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10 Essential Steps To Portfolio Management – Free White Paper

With the start of a New Year, many organizations are realizing the importance of a critical step in the Project and Portfolio Management discipline – Portfolio Planning.  For the average business, Portfolio Planning may be a process well beyond their organizational maturity; however, it is a major component that should not be overlooked in order to increase the probability of reaching 2012 objectives.  The structure in which you execute this discipline may indeed vary depending on maturity, but the basic steps can be followed regardless of the complexity of the processes behind them.

Before we dive into the key steps to portfolio planning, there are several essentials that need to be addressed.  First of all, why define a portfolio?  Organizations will always have projects, they will always have limited resources and they will always need to meet business objectives in order to remain a successful business.  If you are not implementing the RIGHT projects and work to meet strategic objectives, the value you are bringing to the business may be much smaller than its potential.  In today’s competitive marketplace, businesses must bring maximum value to survive.  To read more, please download the attached white paper.  Enjoy!

Download a Free Portfolio Planning White Paper

Other Resources:

Waterfall plus Agile Application – Predictive & Adaptive Planning for the Best of Both Worlds!

I recently read a great blog post that I could strongly relate to.  In his blog post “Predictive AND Adaptive Planning”, Chris describes the benefits of approaching project management in a hybrid approach.  Projects are almost never completely waterfall (predictive), or completely agile (waterfall) and can succeed and benefit from both.  Chris references the success of projects such as the Lewis and Clark expedition referenced as a “startup”, Apollo missions to the moon, and simply building a table in your garage to help visualize the adaptive and predictive elements within each “project”.  In each case, the project is successfully completed and delivered using a range of approaches and/or methodologies.

At EPM Live we cater to all users, all work and all processes.  We don’t believe there is a one size fits all approach to managing projects and work effectively.   Some EPM and PPM tools are rigid and require organizations to adjust their processes to align with the tool.  Because our background includes over ten years of consulting with organizations to successfully deploy Enterprise Project and Portfolio Management solutions, our product has been built to easily adapt to the way you work.

For example, when you create a project workspace, you have the option to select from a variety of pre-built Project Management templates accessed from our App Marketplace.  Our Apps are built with leading industry and business best practices embedded in the configuration to enable rapid adoption and standardization of all types of work.  As we gain insight from our service team, partners and customers, we continually enhance and build new templates for our customers to benefit from.

Some of our most recent additions include our new PM plus Agile Select template.  Essentially, this template is our “hybrid” approach to support using waterfall (predictive) and agile (adaptive) methodologies within one template.

  • Collaborate with team members with requests, team discussions issues and risks.
  • Manage schedules with our online planner, or Microsoft Project along for your predictive needs
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  • Plan iterations and manage your backlog using our Agile Planner for more adaptive and iterative planning.

It is the best of both worlds!  Reality is it doesn’t have to be agile vs. waterfall.   It’s about managing and delivering successful projects in the most effective, efficient method that works for you!

If you’d like to read Chris’s full article:  http://anagilestory.com/2011/11/17/predictive-and-adaptive-planning-2/

Other Related Links

Blog – 5 Benefits of Agile

Blog – How Waterfall and Agile Work Together at EPM Live

Blog – Burn Down Charts – Not Just for Software Development Anymore….

Blog – WorkEngine #Agile Management – Expanding Iterative Planning Outside of Software Development

Sabre Systems Inc. Chooses EPM Live Project Portfolio Management

Thank you for choosing EPM Live Project Portfolio and Work Management Platform! 

Founded in 1989, Sabre Systems, Inc. specializes in providing high-quality Information Technology, Program Management Support, Software Development, Logistics, Engineering Solutions Services and Statistical Programs.

Sabre offers a comprehensive approach to understanding and meeting our clients’ needs through the careful selection and development of a highly qualified professional staff, on-going involvement of senior management in all contractual assignments, and a corporate environment committed to providing superior quality in all our services and products.

Learn more about Sabre Systems, Inc

 

 

Boart Longyear Chooses EPM Live For Their PPM Solution!

Welcome Boart Longyear! Thank you  for choosing EPM Live Project Portfolio Management!

Boart Longyear is the leading provider of mineral exploration drilling services and drilling products in the world today. The Company is the only integrated drilling services and products provider, combining engineering excellence, global manufacturing facilities and the most experienced drilling services group in the business.  With over 120 years of global mineral exploration expertise and the most innovative products in the market, Boart Longyear ultimately delivers unmatched reliability, productivity and safety to the worksite.

Learn more about Boart Longyear.

Get the SharePoint Advantage by Operating EPM Live Solutions

Running an enterprise successfully requires establishing a fixed set of processes and methods within your organization. In order to manage, supervise and examine varied projects, both internally and externally, many organizations are expanding upon their current SharePoint deployment.  SharePoint is no longer strictly an IT tool, more and more organizations are expanding the capabilities of their SharePoint solution into a fully functioning Project Portfolio Management solution. Leveraging EPM Live’s SharePoint-based Enterprise Project Portfolio and Work Management Software not only helps protect current investments already in place but it gives businesses unprecedented boost in productivity, resource allocation, cost management and overall project portfolio visibility. EPM Live project software is already helping over 5,000 companies simplify and become more effective at delivering projects successfully while selecting the right work for the most profitable portfolio. 

Smart Project Management is the key function towards successfully meeting project deadlines and within budget. EPM Live gives every organization the tools they need from simple online project management to strategic, top-down portfolio planning.  Because EPM Live project software is flexible and intuitive, PPM maturity is no longer an issue with user adoption.

Many organizations today face a variety of work including application creation and maintenance, new product development, project deadlines and service requests.  EPM Live’s WorkEngine solution helps organizations create increased productivity by improving resource visibility, execution and collaboration across all work-types. WorkEngine helps in organizing all types of work and managing schedules, resources, costs, time and other functions which are critical for the business. WorkEngine demonstrates key value additions to an enterprise and provides tools and processes to maximize the resource utilization. Leverage EPM Live WorkEngine’s app marketplace for powerful, easy-to-use, predefined templates that are built with leading industry and business best practices to enable rapid adoption and standardization of all types of work.  

EPM Live’s PortfolioEngine solution provides you with an outstanding tool to simplify project portfolio planning and make informed critical business decisions to choose the right projects to drive the business toward its strategic objectives. PortfolioEngine allows you to manage resource capacity planning, portfolio sequencing and financial target modeling to know which projects will deliver the highest ROI. Intuitive end user interface and pre-built reports and dashboards provide increased visibility into project status for all team members and stakeholders.

EPM Live PPM solutions are all Microsoft SharePoint-based and seamlessly integrate with other business productivity tools such as Microsoft Project, Outlook and Excel. A perfect balance of scheduling options, project and portfolio management best practices, collaboration tools and out-of-box reporting and dashboards provides a simple, yet powerful tool.

EPM Live software is flexible and relevant to meet the needs of every business. Free trials are available for each of EPM Live project solution edition. EPM Live believes in the right to choose the best deployment option to fit your organization, on-premise, hosted or SaaS. Watch an on-demand demo and overview of EPM Live or flip through a slide deck for more information on how EPM Live can change the way you work. If you have to work, work smart!

UK Intellectual Property Office Selects EPM Live For Their PPM Solution

The Intellectual Property Office helps you get the right type of protection for your creation or invention. They are the official government body responsible for granting Intellectual Property (IP) rights in the United Kingdom. 

Intellectual Property Office is an Executive Agency of the Department for Business Innovation and Skills (BIS) and they promote innovation by providing a clear, accessible and widely understood IP system, which enables the economy and society to benefit from knowledge and ideas.

An Intellectual property (IP) is any form of original creation that can be bought or sold – from music to machinery. The four main types of IP rights are patents, trade marks, designs and copyright but there are many other ways to protect your IP

For more information on  the Intellectual Property Office and how they can protect your creation or invention click here!

EPM Live Welcomes FirstSouthwest to it's Valued Customer Profile

 FirstSouthwest is one of the country’s largest diversified investment banks, delivering expertise and insight to clients across varied industry specialties including:

  • Public sector entities in Public Finance
  • Individual and institutional investors in Capital Markets
  • Middle-market businesses in Corporate Finance
  • Broker-Dealers and Investment Advisors in Clearing Services

Known as the Public Finance expert in the United States, FirstSouthwest provides financial advisory, underwriting, asset management and consulting services to diverse public sector entities nationwide. We consistently rank as one of the top financial advisors in the U.S. for tax-exempt issuances of debt, based both on number and par value of bond issues and for the past decade, FirstSouthwest has been the leading registered advisor in terms of par amount and number of issues.

Their unique corporate culture attracts highly experienced talent and encourages long-term commitment to their firm. Twenty-five percent of their 350 employees have worked for FirstSouthwest at least 10 years and some have worked for the firm as long as 40 years.

Known for an expertise in personalized client service, their people build trusting and durable relationships with clients. With 63-years of success, broad range of experience, proven track record and dedicated employees distinguish them from their competitors.

FirstSouthwest is a registered broker/dealer with the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA), regulated by the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and adhere to the rules of the Municipal Securities Rulemaking Board (MSRB). The firm is a member of the Securities Investor Protection Corporation (SIPC).

Click here to learn more about FirstSouthwest

 

Meet the Increasing Demand Placed on Your Service Teams – Service Management for SharePoint

Organizations often overcomplicate their initiatives by introducing tools that offer more capabilities and command more change than what organizations today are prepared to support.  The EPM Live’s “Service Management App” is a lightweight flexible template complete with pre-built lists to help your service organization effectively monitor, manage, control and execute on service requests.  Our mission is to help organizations at any level meet the increasing demand placed on service teams.

The EPM Live Service Management App will support your service team’s capability to ensure maximum employee productivity and achieve higher levels of customer satisfaction.  This template includes capabilities to help your service organization effectively monitor, manage, control and execute on all service requests.

By managing your Service Requests with your EPM Live solution, you can incorporate the platform’s features including process management, time management, resource management and cost management.  Easily convert Service Requests to Projects for those items that evolve into a larger project.  Help your teams to work effectively and efficiently to provide all technology delivery services.

 

 

Service Management App” Highlights

  • Incident Management

 

  • Work Log – Quickly log time within a simple status interface

  • Collaborate on Service Requests using EPM Live Comments Feature

EPM Live has many templates to choose from to meet every work management need!  To learn more contact us!

PMBOK Template for SharePoint – Following the PMBOK has Never Been Easier!

The PMBOK is an internationally recognized standard providing fundamentals of project management that apply to a wide range of projects. The processes that are defined in the PMBOK are outlined in the PMI Framework. If you are a PMP then you know how difficult it can be to ensure your projects are properly aligned with the framework. For this reason, EPM Live is offering a PMBOK SharePoint Project Management template. This template gives project managers the tool needed to meet PMBOK compliance for all projects. Use the easy to use check list to view all inputs, outputs, tools and techniques for all process groups and knowledge areas. Following the PMBOK has never been easier!

 

 

 

 

PMBOK Highlights:

  • Project Scheduling & Task Management – leverage multiple scheduling tools to meet every scheduling need

 

 

 

 

 

 

  • Issue, Change, & Risk Management – easily convert items (ex. convert a change request to a task or issue)

 

 

 

 

  • PMBOK Checklist & Compliance Dashboard- leverage out of the box dashboards to monitor compliance

 

 

 

 

 

 

  • Integration with Microsoft Project – in addition to online scheduling tools, you can also connect with Microsoft Project

 

 

 

 

 

 

  • Visual Reports with Dashboards – leverage out of the box reports for simple project reporting

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Easily practice the PMBOK methodology as you manage your projects with EPM Live’s out of box PMBOK template!

PPM for Government – How Government Agencies Can Leverage EPM Live to Reduce IT Spending

Last week, Federal Chief Information Officer, Steven VanRoekel released the following statement in his blog, “This week, we released the details of the FY 2013 IT Budget request totaling $78.8 billion. This is a 0.75 percent decrease from the FY 2012 enacted level of  $79.4 billion – and is noteworthy given the historical growth of Government IT spending. In fact, from FY 2001 through FY 2009, IT spending nearly doubled, growing at an annual rate of 7 percent.”  He then went on to say, “We are seizing on the power of 21st century technology to consolidate data centers; move to lightweight, shareable technologies, such as cloud computing, while also directing agencies to consolidate commodity IT services; and shift to shared services. For example, the Department of Defense (DOD) is saving up to $300 million in FY 2013 from the closure of 100 data centers and the President’s Budget proposes close to a $1 billion decrease in their IT budget.”

As with many organizations, the administration is looking to IT to help reduce costs and maximize efficiencies. By consolidating systems, leveraging cloud computing and bettering Project and Portfolio Management processes, government agencies can make these goals a reality.

Achieving operational efficiency while running large-scale programs effectively are mission critical disciplines that many organizations must conquer to receive the true benefits of IT. EPM Live has had the opportunity to work with many government organizations in the last 10 years.  During the current recession many government leaders have been instructed to cut IT budgets. That being said, they are also looking to IT to reduce costs as a result of IT initiatives. So how can government leaders do more with less?  EPM Live’s strategies that have been implemented via government contracts  including Federal civilian, department of defense as well as state and local governments include:

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  • Eliminating Redundant Systems and Segregated Silos of Information – Government agencies have a tendency to build custom solutions that are disconnected from other IT platforms.  The escalating trend and popularity of SaaS (software-as-a-service) and cloud services can help these government organizations bring systems to market quickly, less costly and without the overhead and infrastructure typically required to implement new systems, not to mention the maintenance that follows. Because EPM Live is an “all work” platform, eliminating unnecessary legacy systems is a reality.  Managing all work within an organization including projects, operational work, products, etc. on one system is now possible. Just like any other business in the world today, these government agencies must not lose site of innovation, new technology and new ways of managing work in order to keep a competitive edge. Data center growth can now take a back seat and data consolidation can bring to light the significance of having more resources available to work on the initiatives that will bring more value to the organization.
  • Implementing Project Portfolio Management (PPM) – Resulting in Better Decision Making and Positive Project Outcomes– Over the years many government projects have been evaluated and processes have been modified as a result. Over the years, the budget plans have reflected the need to cancel and cut projects that are severely over budget and behind schedule. They also require detailed business cases for initiatives that will likely bring more value and attract new funding. To support these efforts, PPM technology is essential. EPM Live has helped government organizations evaluate their projects and programs by allowing business case creation, scoring criteria, ROI analysis and what-if modeling. These organizations can ensure the right projects are being implemented. It has been stated that many government projects weren’t realizing value for years. By that time, the fast-paced world we live in today has changed dramatically, the original benefits of the project were no longer valuable and the needs have changed based on technology drivers, environmental factors, or economic conditions. Implementing PPM technology that will show ROI, timeframe, cost estimates and resource plans along with the business drivers is essential to ensure this type of planning doesn’t consume investments. Choosing the right projects and ensuring a short term value realization can help government leaders make the right strategic decisions to align with objectives, and just as importantly, reduce the risk of potential failure.
  • Improving Organizational Maturity– As mentioned above, one of the best ways to cut costs is to improve Project and Portfolio Management processes. EPM Live helps government organizations align their current processes to a toolset which in turn brings a familiarity to the system creating fast adoption rates and usability. Once the current processes are mapped and usage of the system is high, maturity growth is natural and the risks of overcoming change is minimal. Because we design our products to accommodate all users at all maturity levels, there is a sense of accountability that comes with individual ownership of a tool that can only be present if the users feel as if the system was built with their processes in mind. EPM Live provides many tools for collaboration that help users share best practices, create repeatable processes and work towards maturity improvement goals. As processes improve and maturity levels increase, productivity increases and overall efficiencies begin to unfold.  To join a webinar on “Implementing PPM for a Multi-Maturity Organization” register here.
  • Increasing Project Transparency and Awareness – It is becoming more and more evident that providing constituents with data insight into government project spending and status is critical to running projects effectively. The degree in which the government serves its customers is crucial to its success just as it is to all consumer focused businesses operating today. The government has taken many steps to improving project transparency over the years. In 2009, an IT dashboard was launched to give the American people insight into how government funding was being spent and how those initiatives were performing. Later, the government launched a program in which they would conduct program reviews and would allow for termination of programs that were not producing dividends for the American people. EPM Live has implemented these dashboards
    within many government agencies to increase transparency, generate awareness, bring to light potential risks before they become major issues and to create timely solutions to the visible problems that persist. Awareness simply gives businesses the ability to react quickly and respond to the issues that often manifest within projects due to delayed resolution.

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There are many steps that government agencies can take to realize full benefit of IT.  To learn more about EPM Live and its Government solutions, please contact us for more information.