You have outgrown using multiple spreadsheets to manage your project and have identified the need for PPM software. Your next step is to convince Senior Management of the need to invest in a PPM Solution.
In her first blog Lydia Quan, our Vice President of Client Engagement for North America, offers five benefits of utilizing a PPM Solution that you can use when building a business case to invest in a PPM Solution to your SMT.
1. Centralize your project data
You need to centralize project information. Only when you have a centralized tool can you guarantee full visibility on your portfolio of projects. It saves project managers from having to badger colleagues for information. If they want to see the status of their enterprise portfolio (Which projects are doing well? Which projects are doing poorly?) they can immediately go in and see from dynamic dashboard views that data from visualization. They have all that project information in one place. It’s very easy for them to see required data without having to get into the nitty gritty of all the project detail or wait for a status report from a project manager – it’s already inside the PPM tool. That’s an invaluable resource.
2. Digitize your business processes
Having an MS Excel spreadsheet and sending it back and forth doesn’t cut it anymore in a complex business process environment. Info will inevitably fall between the cracks. It will be out of date quickly. It will slow up reporting. You need a digitized solution that you can log into so you can easily check status information if needed. The beauty with digitization is that you can, for example, submit a project idea, track the ideation lifecycle, see it come to fruition – without getting bogged down in time-consuming, manual processes.
3. Benefit from inbuilt workflow
Get business processes which have in-built automated workflows so you’re not delaying a project lifecycle. If your processes are based within a workflow, project staff won’t have to chase down colleagues for, say, approvals on budgets. Instead they can get pinged easily and quickly. As soon as an approval is submitted, it can kick off an email alert to the person who’s responsible.
Let’s take an example. Say you’re part of a large organization and you’ve the idea for a project that is going to help your org save money with, say, a global cost improvement program. If you can digitize your processes, your organization staff can go in and submit an idea like that; save documentation as it progresses on the PPM platform; avoid having to hassle colleagues for updates, instead knowing it is all being gathered and tracked within the PPM solution; and when it comes time for senior management to make a “go” or “no-go” decision on the project, they can do that rapidly and with confidence. It results in better decision-making.
4. Faster reporting saves dollars
If you have a PPM platform in place, rather than laboriously putting together reports – and storing them inside, say, MS Excel spreadsheets – look at the time you save with a PPM solution that can generate those reports automatically. You have measurable reasons to install a PPM solution – saving time on reporting, cutting report generation from weeks to minutes, is one of those standout benefits.
There are knock-on benefits to consider, too. If you’ve to manually create reports in MS Excel – that’s time you’re wasting. Every week you might be spending – at a conservative estimate – eight hours reporting a week. You can do the maths quickly, as to how that relates to salary payments for your project teams across the organization. If every project manager is wasting eight hours a day at a rate of $70 per hour how much money is the organization frittering away?
If you’ve a PPM tool in place that is capturing project data – and generating automatic reports; where colleagues can log in and see it right away – that is eight hours a week that each project manager is getting back to work on higher-end work, not to mention the dollars the organization is saving by implementing an effective PPM platform. It’s something measurable for management.
5. Free up time to focus on value-add project work
Let’s flesh this out. One of the big benefits of a PPM solution once it matures – and this can be within a matter of weeks – is that you can re-purpose your project staff. The roles of your project managers and their teams can transform from data capture & entry to more value-added data assurance and actual project management, which is what you’re paying them for. This cannot be stressed enough. If they can instead spend their time actually managing project portfolios, managing stakeholders, then on-time delivery will improve significantly. Things like cost overruns and the burden of projects reduces because they’re able to spend time managing projects rather than doing basic data entry.
Let’s look at some examples of how a ppm solution can free up time.
If you think about what typically goes wrong with projects, risks & issues is always going to be a key attribute for a project manager. If they’ve the time to be able to identify issues, to manage them, to mitigate risks, that will have a knock-on effect for the success of the project. You’re also reducing costs on projects because you remove delays.
Take resource management. Every organization has a constraint on resources. Everybody is constantly being asked to do more with the same or less. If you’ve got time to be more efficient with those resources and free them up for those higher-end parts of the business or service where they’re going to actually improve the project portfolios’ performance – that will be the best use of resources.
A lot of organizations needlessly spend time just preparing reports that are out of date the second they’re issued. If you radically cut that time down, it means your project teams will spend time managing projects rather than trying to pull reports together.
If you want to invest in a PPM Solution and would like more advice why not reach out to me via email – firstname.lastname@example.org and I’d be happy to assist. To see how Cora PPM compares to other PPM categories click here.