Project Management Process and Tools Can’t Be Too “Big” for Small Projects

While browsing through the latest edition of PM Insider*, a newsletter from ProjectManagement.com, the following question and correspondence caught my eye.

Question:

I have a short project coming up that seems too simple to need to go through all the usual processes. Is there a quick way to ensure that the project plans are baselined and tracked in my automated software? My boss will still want(s) effort, schedule and cost captured and reported and the usual PMI processes honored?

 Provided Answer:

A. Collect cost receipts in a manila folder and ask team members to write down the time they spend on each task. You can figure out a report at the end.
B. Go through all of the steps, including your automated software files, just as you usually do. Short projects should be planned, documented and archived exactly as longer ones.
C. Use a quick plan with lighter documentation, but involve your team in close communication on a daily basis.
D. Pull a similar electronic project file from your archives and change its name to the name of this project. Submit this disguised project at the end.

This is a great question and evidence of an endemic issue for many project management professionals, which is really – my project management process and “automated software,” be it PPM or something lighter, is clunky or actually “not automated enough” so it’s a hassle and feels like a waste of time to go through and use for “minor projects.”

I concur with the sentiment of the answer provided that if the project – major or minor – is worth doing, then it’s worth tracking, which means the investments you’ve made in project management processes and tools should be leveraged to do so. And if those tools and/or processes make it overly cumbersome or time-consuming to do this for minor projects, then the process and/or tool(s) should be adapted to accommodate managing smaller projects easier.

A 200 hour departmental project should be easier to manage than a 20,000 hour enterprise project. That’s intuitive enough, but not always the case when processes and tools have been designed and implemented to manage, track and measure high investment projects. If employing the same processes and tools to manage and track smaller projects makes it unnecessarily complex and time consuming, is it really worth it?

Hello rogue projects.

Hello bad habits.

Hello failed investments in project management process and tools.

Processes and tools should be flexible to accommodate this delineation without sacrificing management capabilities or tracking requirements. If it’s too much work, it probably won’t be done if the perceived value/return of using the process/tools doesn’t correlate with the scope of work or time required to manage a seemingly minor project.

 

*ProjectManagement.com Newsletter 12/4/2013

BioBridge Global Gets Competitive Edge with Daptiv’s PPM Solutions

We are excited to announce that with the help of Daptiv’s innovative PPM solutions, BioBridge Global (BBG) was successful in aligning its multiple business lines, streamlining complex processes and standardizing projects across the organization. BBG is a non-profit company that oversees and supports the South Texas Blood & Tissue Center, QualTex Laboratories, GenCure, and The Blood and Tissue Center Foundation.

For an organization catering to a highly regulated industry, the road to smooth planning and execution needed a lot more than just a PMO. Operating in the heavily regulated Healthcare industry with changing government strategy, policies, and meeting multiple audit requirements, BioBridge Global was in need for a dynamic project portfolio management (PPM) tool that would help them keep up with changing requirements at the project level without adding excessive time and cost.

In collaboration with Daptiv, BioBridge Global created several custom applications using Daptiv’s Dynamic Applications, including a report-building scorecard and applications that provided visibility and cost/benefit analysis. Daptiv’s report building mechanism enabled BBG’s governance committee to take critical business decisions as it grew its business operations across the state. Additionally, Daptiv’s insight has helped BBG determine a project’s fit in supporting the overall business by identifying costs, potential risks, resource issues and more before a decision is made to green light a project.

To know more about the announcement, click here.

Daptiv UK Hosts Customer Day in London to Discuss Best Project Management Practices

This month, we hosted an exclusive daylong roundtable for our customers in London. This meeting was designed to bring together project managers and senior executives to discuss their changing roles, challenges and how they were using Daptiv solutions to enable them to achieve optimized efficiency within their organisations to compete, grow and facilitate change inside their businesses.

The roundtable focused on the topic, ” Evolution & Innovation”. Issues raised at the meeting included implementing corporate strategy with limited resources, optimizing strategy delivery, using Portfolio Management to achieve the correct balance of projects, and why Project Portfolio Management matters. Attendees discussed a range of topics including change, transformation, strategy, prioritization and share some useful hints & tips to use Daptiv solutions more efficiently. Additionally, our guest speaker Richard Trett, IT Portfolio Manager and Process subject expert shed light into utilising process and process methodologies through an interactive presentation with our gathered audience.

Various studies conducted by firms such as Forrester Research, Gartner and Software Engineering Institute (SEI) state that 60 to 80% of project failures can be attributed to poorly defined requirements. Organizations have long acknowledged that requirements management best practices are critical to project success. However, many have been slow to change due to misconceptions or ingrained beliefs about the role of requirements in the project management life cycle. This roundtable introduced the requirements for management process and provided a practical implementation approach to ensure successful project delivery. In the current economic environment, there is tremendous pressure to drive down operating costs, increase profits and to become more effective in driving the strategy needs of organizations, while managing constant global change and increases in regulatory and compliance requirements. Having used Daptiv solutions, all our attendee were of the opinion that without PPM processes and a common approach to the management of projects, there will be multiple views on the right methodology, only leading to money, time and resource leakages.

Because portfolio management is a holistic system that requires involvement by project managers, project teams, executives, managers, supervisors and front-line employees, this session highlighted the importance of tools in implementing PPM and attendees demonstrated how to best utilize PPM processes to meet executive demand.  It was interesting to witness the different ways in which our customers are implementing Daptiv.

Some of the key takeaways from the roundtable were:

  • Speed to innovation is accelerating
  • Executive sponsorship of PPM programs heightens success
  • Process methodology narrows the gap between ideation and innovation
  • Daptiv allows our customers to make good decisions
  • Allowing our customer to do the right projects right

Daptiv honored as Bronze winner in the 5th Annual 2013 Golden Bridge Awards

 Only Project Portfolio Management Vendor To Be Recognized In The Mobile Product Innovation Category

This month, Daptiv earned the Bronze status in the Golden Bridge Awards for its Daptiv Mobile solutions. We were the only PPM vendor to be featured in the Mobile Innovation category. More than 40 judges from a broad spectrum of industry voices from across the world participated and their average scores determined the 2013 Golden Bridge Business Awards winners.

The annual Golden Bridge Awards program encompasses the world’s best in organizational performance, innovations, products and services, executives and management teams, women in business and the professions, innovations, case studies, product management, public relations and marketing campaigns, and customer satisfaction programs from every major industry in the world. Organizations from all over the world are eligible to submit nominations including public and private, for-profit and non-profit, largest to smallest and new start-ups.

Daptiv Mobile makes it simple for enterprises to deploy and for project managers and team members to use. Since Daptiv Mobile leverages HTML5, there is no application to install or maintain. Daptiv Mobile is accessed on the user’s smartphone browser and the application automatically syncs any updates and changes made on a mobile device with Daptiv PPM. Unlike other mobile PPM offerings that are iPhone or Android-specific applications, a single version of Daptiv Mobile caters to clients across multiple mobile platforms – including iOS, Android and Blackberry. This ensures that users experience the same interface across multiple devices.

Daptiv Mobile, a HTML5-based Web client that enables users to securely manage timesheets, tasks and approvals anywhere from a mobile device. This application complements Daptiv’s cloud-based PPM solution and gives users more choices on how to use Daptiv PPM away from their offices and computers.

To learn more about Daptiv mobile, please visit: http://www.daptiv.com/products/daptiv-mobile.htm

 

Survey Finds Resource Management is the Top Business Challenge for Senior Executives

We recently surveyed 100 senior IT executives at the Gartner PPM and IT Governance Summit from May 20-22, 2013 to gauge and analyze the key business challenges faced by organizations in today’s economy. Interestingly 67% of respondents considered resource management as their top business challenge, 28% of them found it difficult to justify the value delivered by the Project Management Office. 22% stated that keeping track of time and money leakages was a concern. Only 5% considered delivering change without overburdening their staff as their main issue, which can likely be attributed to their usage of PPM software and resulting benefits.

“67% of Senior Executives Identified Prioritizing Work to Fit Available Resource Capacity as Their Biggest Business Challenge”

Project Management Offices are increasingly seen as custodians of the resource management process within organizations, and this is validated by another study conducted by pmsolutions research – “The State of the PMO 2012”.  The study looked at a broad spectrum of companies across the globe and found that the number one priority for the PMOs is to “Improve Resource Planning and Forecasting Process.” Pointing towards similar findings, both the Daptiv survey and the pmsolutions’ study reveal that overcoming resource management challenges will be vital for PMOs to justify their value in the future.

You can find the details of the survey here.