UMT360 Blog

Blog Posts from the Leader in Enterprise Portfolio Management

Archive for 2013

Why organizations need more from portfolio management.

Written by Ben Chamberlain on November 4th, 2013 at 7:00 am

In a UMT360 webcast, an industry analyst said that business leaders are now “reaching out to the market again looking for independent portfolio management functionality that will allow them to justify new investments and justify the redistribution especially of funds in order to exploit new business opportunities.”   Today, it can be a daunting process for executives dealing with data and metrics held in silos. They need to see the full picture – a 360° perspective – across their organization.  Independent, or integrated, portfolio management is essential to ensuring that scarce resources – both people and money – are fully utilized and that the business and technology architecture can be continually optimized to provide necessary agility to keep pace with changing demand.

UMT360 is an integrated portfolio management solution that helps organizations to connect business and technology asset portfolios, gain complete financial transparency, collaborate to make smarter investment decisions and successfully deliver strategic initiatives to maximize ROI. Extensive experience working with Global 2000 companies has consistently shown that businesses must better understand the unique inter-relationships between portfolios to improve investment decisions.   At its foundation are three core elements: integration, financial and synchronization.

  • Integration – By standardizing metrics and capturing interrelationships and dependencies between different domains helps you build a dynamic blueprint and effectively orchestrate your business and technology asset portfolios providing a completely new perspective.
  • Flexibility to dynamically aggregate financial data between portfolios helps derive and track the total cost of ownership of each entity and drives financial transparency making it easier to view assets as business investments and make ROI-based decisions.
  • And synchronization helps a business proactively record lifecycle decisions for each asset and quickly gauge the cross portfolio impact of investment decisions.

The analyst noted that the future is in creating a portfolio management solution that once existed 15 years ago but companies weren’t ready for yet… an independent platform that not only brings in the financial aspects but also pulls in data from other third party sources to help provide multidimensional analysis that leads to better decision making no matter what vertical industry you’re in.

The time is now for businesses to identify Integrated Portfolio Management solutions like UMT360 which are able to provide them with the perspective they need for better decision making.  UMT360 is proud to be leading the way.

Want to know more about why organizations today are looking for more than traditional PPM?  Don’t miss a UMT360 video presentation featuring Gartner analyst Daniel Stang which explores what you need to do to get more from your PPM.   Click here to view the presentation.

How often should you evaluate projects?

Written by Ben Chamberlain on October 28th, 2013 at 9:52 am

In a recent HBR article The Hidden Indicators of a Failing Project, author Gretchen Gavett explores why people are reluctant to bring up red flags during the course of a project.  On the list of How to Manage Big Projects Differently are “check and revise your business case regularly” and “monitor what’s not being spent.”  Those are two items that Con Edison’s Frank La Rocca has dealt with over the years as he’s worked to increase project success rates.  It meant having a discussion about how practical it really is to only evaluate projects annually.

In an October 30th webinar, Frank, who is the energy company’s Director of Business Improvement Services, discussed how instituting a “sweep process” allowed his organization to make changes that, in the end, translated into greater ROI.  How do you get started?  Check out Frank’s webinar – the recording is now available on UMT360 or by clicking here.  He looks at how dynamically reallocating project funds will help you optimize capital spend and increase your ROI.

PPM 2.0: How a ‘Sweep Process’ Helps Maximize ROI

Written by Ben Chamberlain on October 25th, 2013 at 10:52 am

Almost two years ago, Con Edison’s Director of Business Improvement Services, Frank La Rocca, instituted a ‘sweep process’ to allow for dynamic budget reallocation.  “It allows project managers to release funds dynamically during the year and we can secure those funds for other projects.  Once we know a project is not going to use that money, we take it, we sweep it away and we invest it strategically in another project,”  Frank explains.  He says that allowed the utility to increase its utilization though it required a culture change early on.  “The sweep process is really where we get a lot of bang for our buck and if I were to describe the process, it’s really breaking the annual budgeting planning mold.  We had so many project managers say ‘that estimate you’re holding me accountable for , we did that so early on when we didn’t really know a lot about the project yet, now that the project is executing, you’re still holding me accountable and that’s not fair.’  What we allow them to do is literally reforecast on a quarterly basis and give up money that we can use for other projects.”

Learn more about how to institute a ‘sweep process’ to maximize your PPM ROI.  View Frank La Rocca’s webinar on dynamically reallocating funds to optimize capital spend.  Click here to view the recording and also to learn more about how incorporating Portfolio Financial Intelligence has helped Frank and his team more successfully manage their project portfolio.


What is PPM 2.0?

Written by Ben Chamberlain on October 21st, 2013 at 8:38 am

UMT360 is focused on delivering PPM2.0 for our customers – the new PPM which provides organizations with the complete perspective they need to make better decisions about projects – decisions which ultimately will translate to more ROI.  But what does PPM 2.0 really mean?

PPM has evolved significantly over the last 15 years.   Organizations have automated their execution oriented PPM capabilities such as schedule management, resource management and time reporting, to create a strong system of record.  But traditional PPM is limited largely because it doesn’t include the integration of financial management best practices which would help organizations gauge the economic impact of decisions and allow them to make adjustments along the way to increase success rates.

The limitations are at the root of disturbing project success stats.  The Standish Group reveals in its CHAOS Report that 42% of projects are delivered late or over budget and 21% of projects fail to be completed or implemented.  Gartner finds that 33% of completed projects experience cost overruns.  Our own experience with hundreds of UMT360 engagements has shown us that companies are failing to realize up to 46% of the planned business value from their portfolio investments.

Today, business leaders want more from their PPM investment; they want more successful project outcomes.  They’re seeking out Integrated Portfolio Management solutions which provide a complete perspective by connecting siloed business and technology asset portfolios to optimize resources – both people and money.  That functionality gives them a way to justify decisions and costs around existing and new investments.

PPM2.0 is the result of organizations combining Integrated Portfolio Management techniques with traditional PPM capabilities.  This smarter PPM helps to better connect the worlds of finance and PPM to gain complete financial transparency across all projects, optimize the capital spend and ultimately, improve success rates and ROI.

Helping You Boost Your Project Portfolio ROI

Written by Ben Chamberlain on October 16th, 2013 at 10:37 am

Today, many companies are failing to realize up to 46% of the planned business value from their project portfolios. The key to recapturing that lost business value is Portfolio Financial Intelligence (PFI).

UMT360 is please to launch a series of three webinars presented by Frank La Rocca, Consolidated Edison’s Director of Business Improvement Services within the Finance Organization.  He will discuss his own experiences at Con Edison and other US corporations; look at the most common business practices contributing to that lost business value; and share a proven framework for creating a strong foundation for PFI.  You’ll learn how to go beyond traditional PPM capabilities to gain complete financial transparency, dynamically optimize capital spend, make smarter investment decisions and ultimately improve project success rates.

In his first session, airing on October 16th, Frank looked at changes businesses need to make today in financial estimating and governance to create a strong PFI foundation.  He covered building robust business cases to evaluate competing requests, aligning capital spend with strategic priorities, establishing baseline metrics to evaluate current performance, and determining and analyzing root cause.

Click here to view the webinar.  We’d also appreciate your feedback on the webinar series.