Project Management Office (PMO) and Information Management and Technology (IMT) Project Management

270 FW 2
FWM Number
Originating Office
Information Resources and Technology Management



2.1 What is the purpose of this chapter?

2.2 What is the scope of this chapter?

2.3 What terms do you need to know to understand this chapter and the accompanying handbook?

2.4 What is the overall policy?

2.5 What are the authorities for this chapter?


2.6 Who is responsible for governance of Information Management and Technology (IMT) projects?

2.7 Who is responsible for managing the Service’s IMT projects and the IMT portfolio?

PROJECT REVIEW AND APPROVAL2.8 How are IMT projects reviewed and approved within the Service?


2.1 What is the purpose of this chapter? This chapter:

A. Ensures that the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s (Service) Associate Chief Information Officer (ACIO), other members of the Information Resources and Technology Management (IRTM) leadership team, and key mission and business stakeholders have adequate oversight and control over Information Management and Technology (IMT) projects;

B. Describes how the Service identifies, inventories, manages, and closes its IMT projects to best meet organizational objectives while complying with applicable Department of the Interior (Department) and Office of Management and Budget (OMB) requirements;

C. Establishes the Information Technology (IT) Project Management Office (PMO) to ensure compliance with and accountability for the Service’s IMT project management process and to help IRTM manage the Service’s IMT portfolio; and

D. Ensures employees who are involved with funding and managing IMT projects and initiatives are aware of their roles and responsibilities and comply with the necessary review processes that the  IMT Project Review and Approval Handbookdescribes.

2.2 What is the scope of this chapter? This chapter applies to:

A. Service employees who procure, develop, modify, or manage information systems and other types of IMT projects; and

B. All Service IMT projects, including proposed projects and projects included in the IMT project portfolio.

2.3 What terms do you need to know to understand this chapter and the accompanying handbook?

A. Application (or software application). A software program, hosted by an information system, that performs a specific function directly for a user and can be executed without access to system control, monitoring, or administrative privileges.

B. Business Lead. Person(s) who define and provide the requirements, necessary authorizations, and functional know-how of the business processes, roles and responsibilities, and workflow involved with a project. They represent a group of end users who will use the project’s output. A Business Lead may also be known as a Customer Stakeholder or Business Process Owner.  

C. Executive Sponsor. A senior executive at the Directorate level who is responsible for the success of the project (sometimes called a Project Sponsor or Owner). The Executive Sponsor is responsible for the overall procurement, development, integration, compliance, and operation of an IMT project. The Executive Sponsor represents the business side of a project and works with the PMO to ensure the project has adequate resources (including funding) throughout its lifecycle. In most cases, once the project enters the execution phase of its lifecycle, the Executive Sponsor becomes the System Owner or designates another employee to serve in that role.

D. Information Management and Technology (IMT).

(1) Information management is the collection, organization, and control of information from one or more sources and distribution of that information to one or more audiences.

(2) IT includes, but is not limited to, any services, equipment, or interconnected systems or subsystems of equipment that we use to automatically acquire, store, analyze, evaluate, manipulate, manage, move, control, display, switch, interchange, transmit, or receive data or information.

E. IMT project. A temporary endeavor (with a defined start and end) with specific objectives to develop, modernize, enhance, dispose, or maintain an IMT system or investment. A project may consist of one or more components and may involve one or more acquisition- or development-related activities. This does not include technical activities done to maintain existing technical infrastructure or systems, such as configuration changes or repairs that fall into the category of operations and maintenance. The IRTM PMO, which is within the Program and Project Management Branch, manages all IMT projects and organizes them into the IMT project portfolio.

F. IMT project portfolio. A group of IMT projects and the processes by which they are selected and managed. The ACIO strategically selects our IMT project portfolio to advance the Service's organizational goals.

G. IMT project review process. Actions the Service takes to ensure that IMT projects comply with our technical and compliance requirements, including compatibility with the Service’s existing IT infrastructure and architecture. The review also helps ensure project proposals are aligned with specific mission and program needs, there is no overlap with existing projects, and the project will result in demonstrable benefits.

H. Information system. A discrete set of information resources organized for the collection, processing, maintenance, use, sharing, dissemination, or disposition of information.

I. IT capital planning and investment control. The strategic structuring of our IT investments and an integral part of IMT project management. The Department tracks, captures, and reports estimated and actual IT spending. We collect all IT fiscal year estimated costs and use that information to formulate OMB reporting estimates. The portfolio management process ensures that the IRTM Investment Management Branch properly catalogs IT investments and that they can track and report them to the Department and OMB.

J. IT project management. The process of planning; organizing; controlling delivery, cost, and schedule; and determining responsibility for completing an organization's IT goals. In the Service, project managers, in coordination with Executive Sponsors, Business and Technical leads, and other stakeholders, perform IT project management activities.

K. Major IT investment. The Department’s capital planning and investment control policies and guidance determine which IT investments are major. Major investments require special management attention and reporting because of their:

(1) Importance to the Service mission;

(2) Alignment to the Department’s strategic goals;

(3) High development and operation and maintenance costs; and

(4) High risk to the administration of Service programs, finances, property, or other resources.

L. Modification. As used in this chapter and the handbook, projects and activities that change existing information systems to improve capability or performance, implement new legislative or regulatory requirements, or meet leadership requests. We cover these projects and activities under this chapter if they require new expenditures and will lead to new privacy, security, accessibility, or other compliance-related considerations. This would generally only be necessary for major modifications, such as upgrading a legacy system to a new technology platform.

M. Technical Subject Matter Expert. The employee responsible for guiding IT engineering and development efforts and ensuring compliance with applicable technical standards and expectations.

2.4 What is the overall policy?

A. It is Service policy to:

(1) Align IMT projects with organizational mission objectives and strategic goals;

(2) Only invest resources in IMT projects that:

     (a) Reduce operational costs, enable mission capabilities, or are mandated (such as for security reasons); and

     (b) Do not duplicate functions or capabilities that another IMT project or investment within the portfolio provides;

(3) Ensure IMT projects are appropriately funded to include costs for operation, security, and decommissioning and to track ongoing costs throughout their lifecycle;

(4) Ensure that projects meet requisite privacy, security, Section 508, records management, Paperwork Reduction Act (PRA), and all other applicable compliance requirements;

(5) Review all proposed IMT projects and major modifications to existing IMT investments through the IMT project review process as we describe in the IMT Project Review and Approval Handbook. See section 2.8 for more information;

(6) Assign a qualified project manager to IMT projects within the IMT project portfolio when doing so is in the interest of the Service;

(7) Ensure IMT projects that solicit, collect, and store information from the public are reviewed by the Service’s Information Collection Clearance Officer (ICCO) in accordance with 281 FW 4, Information Collection Program and Budget and 281 FW 5, Information Collection Clearance Procedures; and

(8) Terminate IMT projects that no longer meet the criteria described in section 2.4A(2), either through immediate cancellation of funding or gradual phasing out of activities aligned with a service or system lifecycle.

B. The Service has established the PMO, a team of project management professionals within the IRTM Program and Project Management Branch, who, under the direction of the PMO Manager, perform the following project management functions:

(1) Use a standardized approach for managing and documenting project-related activities;

(2) Advise the ACIO (i.e., the Assistant Director - IRTM), program and Regional stakeholders, and applicable IMT governance bodies (see section 2.6) on the initiation, selection, modification, and continued operation of IMT projects in the Service’s IMT project portfolio;

(3) Share resources, methodologies, tools, and techniques related to project management;

(4) Manage the projects within the IMT project portfolio, as assigned, until the information system or technical solution is deployed and transitioned to the appropriate operations and maintenance support function;

(5) Coordinate with IRTM Division and Branch Chiefs to prioritize and assign resources (e.g., staff, equipment, etc.) for completing projects; and

(6) Maintain an inventory of active IMT projects.

C. Employees who are key stakeholders in the process of initiating and managing an IT project, such as Business Leads, Technical Subject Matter Experts, and Executive Sponsors, must:

(1) Work with applicable IMT governance bodies and the PMO, as appropriate, to develop and provide the rationale for the initiation, selection, modification, and termination of IMT projects;

(2) Ensure that IMT projects have the resources to meet necessary compliance and operational requirements throughout their lifecycle;

(3) Help develop project management plans and other necessary documentation for each approved IMT project proposal in coordination with the PMO;

(4) Coordinate with the PMO to establish performance expectations and measurements;

(5) Take an active role in managing their projects, in coordination with the PMO and in accordance with all applicable Departmental and OMB guidance; and

(6) Assist the PMO inperiodic verifications of IMT project portfolio inventory records, updating or deleting those that are outdated or obsolete.

2.5 What are the authorities for this chapter?

A. E-Government Act of 2002 (Public Law 107-347).

B. Federal Information Technology Acquisition Reform Act (FITARA), which is part of the Carl Levin and Howard P. “Buck” McKeon National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2015 (Public Law 113-291).

C. Information Technology Management Reform Act of 1996 (Clinger-Cohen Act) (Public Law 104-106).

D. OMB Circular A-130, Managing Federal Information as a Strategic Resource.

E. Paperwork Reduction Act, as amended (44 U.S.C. 3501 et seq.).

F. 112 Departmental Manual (DM) 24, Office of the Chief Information Officer.


2.6 Who is responsible for governance of IMT projects? The ACIO exercises governance of IMT projects through the Requirements Management Board (RMB), IMT Requirements Committee (IMTRC), and IMT Executive Board, as established in 270 FW 1, IRTM Senior Leadership and Governance. For more information on these governance bodies, and the overall IMT project review process, you can review their respective charters and the IMT Project Review and Approval Handbook.

2.7 Who is responsible for managing the Service’s IMT projects and the IMT project portfolio? See Table 2-1.

Table 2-1: Responsibilities for Project Management

These employees…Are responsible for…
A. The DirectorApproving or declining to approve Servicewide policy.
B. Directorate members

(1) Ensuring that their staff members follow the requirements in this chapter,

(2) Ensuring IMT projects within their areas of responsibility have the appropriate resources throughout their lifecycle,

(3) Serving (or designating other employees to serve) as the System Owner for projects within their areas of responsibility once they enter the operations and maintenance phase of their lifecycle and working with IRTM Investment Management Branch staff to meet Capital Planning and Investment Control (CPIC) requirements.

C. Associate Chief Information Officer (ACIO) for the Service (i.e., Assistant Director - IRTM)

(1) Reviewing and approving (or delegating approval for) the Service’s IMT projects in accordance with the authority delegated by the Department’s CIO and applicable guidance;

(2) Providing project management and technical support for approved IMT projects and assisting Regions and programs with planning and executing those projects;

(3) Establishing policy for discovery, assessment, management, and inventory of all Service-owned systems and IMT projects; and

(4) Working with the PMO to establish and manage an IMT project portfolio that supports current and future organizational objectives.

D. Chief, IRTM Division of Policy and Planning

(1) Overseeing the PMO and the IRTM Investment Management Branch to ensure proper alignment of the IMT project portfolio;

(2) Fostering open communication among IMT governance bodies, IRTM leadership, and the PMO; and

(3) Working with the PMO Manager to control project risks and to design and deliver project management reviews for the IMT governance bodies and IRTM leadership.

E. PMO Manager (Chief, Branch of Program and Project Management in IRTM)

(1) Developing, maintaining, implementing, and documenting the IMT project management framework, methodology, forms, tools, and templates in line with Project Management Institute (PMI) guidelines;

(2) Providing a core team of professionals certified by the Federal Acquisition Certification for Program and Project Managers (FAC-P/PM) program to manage IMT projects;

(3) Working with other IRTM personnel to ensure that the projects in the IMT project portfolio are meeting Service and Departmental requirements;

(4) Advising the ACIO and IMT governance bodies about assigned IMT projects and apprising them of the status of those projects, which includes:

     (a) Acting as an integral stakeholder throughout the lifecycle of each assigned project by recommending continuing, terminating, or taking other actions on projects, as required, so the project remains aligned with organizational objectives;

     (b) Participating in the selection, management, and deployment of shared IMT project resources and working with the applicable IRTM Division or Branch Chief, or both, to prioritize how those resources are expended;

     (c) Using data from the projects to evaluate how the Service is fulfilling higher level strategic objectives; and

     (d) Participating in management reviews of projects and investments at the discretion of the ACIO or applicable IMT governance body;

(5) Facilitatingcommunication among project managers, Business Leads, Technical Leads, and other stakeholders;

(6) Assisting project managers with implementing established project management guidelines;

(7) Ensuring that project managers maintain a complete and current project inventory that includes:

     (a) Periodic verification of system/project records, and

     (b) Prompt updates to the project records after achieving significant schedule milestones;

(8) Developing and promulgating performance measures for Service projects;

(9) Creating documentation, project management tools, and guidance, and making them available to Executive Sponsors, Business Leads, Technical Subject Matter Experts, and other employees; and

(10) Coordinating with other project management professionals and groups across the Service to share best practices, standards, and guidance.

F. Project Managers

(1) Ensuring that project management tasks are completed according to the project schedule, scope, and within budget;

(2) Communicating with stakeholders about project progress and about any anticipated significant variances from schedule and changes in project costs as determined by established project measurements and goals;

(3) Applying FAC-P/PM-recommended project management practices to their projects;

(4) Coordinating with the IRTM Investment Management Branch to keep all relevant investment artifacts up to date, at least quarterly, throughout the lifecycle of the project;

(5) Ensuring that investment artifacts in the Department’s approved investment management and reporting system are signed;

(6) Working with IRTM and Service employees to ensure that each project meets compliance requirements and that those requirements are incorporated into solicitations, contracts, and other related agreements, as needed;

(7) Ensuring that each proposed project has an Executive Sponsor responsible for funding the project throughout its projected lifecycle; and

(8) Coordinating with the Associate Chief Information Security Officer to appoint a qualified Information System Security Officer for each project that requires continued security monitoring once it reaches the operation and maintenance of its lifecycle.


2.8 How are IMT projects reviewed and approved within the Service?

A. Employees who want to purchase, develop, acquire, or make a major modification to a new or existing information system or technological solution must:

(1) Formulate (or work with the Requirements Management Board (RMB) to formulate) an IMT project proposal and present it to the appropriate IMT governance team(s) for review and approval prior to expending funds; and

(2) Document a business case to justify funding the IMT project. The business case must include an analysis of benefits, costs, risks, and mission impact. The business case also must include assessments of privacy, security, accessibility, records management, and other applicable compliance requirements. See the  IMT Project Review and Approval Handbook  for more information.

B. The ACIO is ultimately responsible for providing approval for IMT projects after they have been through the IMT project review process. The ACIO delegates approval for certain IMT projects to the RMB, as outlined in the RMB charter. Projects that represent potential major investments require approval from the IMT Executive Board. See the IMT Project Review and Approval Handbook for more information.

C. Once approved, the PMO adds a project to the Service’s IMT portfolio, and the PMO Manager assigns a project manager from the PMO, if necessary, to assist Executives Sponsors with managing the project throughout the rest of its lifecycle.