UMT360 Blog

Blog Posts from the Leader in Enterprise Portfolio Management

Archive for February, 2014

Microsoft Project Server & UMT360

Written by Ben Chamberlain on February 10th, 2014 at 4:42 pm

The  Director of Development for Microsoft’s Project Server Ludovic Hauduc was in the UMT360 offices recently and took a moment to talk about UMT360 as a Microsoft Partner and how our product is helping Project Server customers get more value from their PPM investment.  UMT360 is the only Enterprise Portfolio Management solution built on SharePoint with seamless Project Server integration.

 

Click here to learn more about how UMT360 is helping Project Server customers get more value from their PPM investment.

How to get Started Integrating Project Financial Controls

Written by Ben Chamberlain on February 6th, 2014 at 8:22 am

At this week’s Microsoft Project Conference in Anaheim, attendees packed into the session about Benefits Realization wanting to know what they can do to better achieve project and portfolio benefits.  UMT360’s Ben Chamberlain presented the Benefits Realization session and told the crowd that it is essential to start looking at projects as business investments.  That means you have to begin to integrate financial management capabilities with PPM so that financial controls are in place to make you aware of issues so you can make needed adjustments throughout the life cycle to ensure benefits realization.

Ben suggested that organizations take a phased approach to integrating financial controls:

  1. Establish the Financial Management Foundation – Establish your financial structures, cost benefit, investment governance, controls and integrate within your PPM system, your planning and execution system.  Have the data related to your strategic initiatives in one place.
  2. Integrate with System of Record – The ERP system plays a very important role in providing the actual cost information for a project.
  3. Automate Management Reports – Time taken to build reports takes time away from analysis so automating the reports allows the PMO to focus on more strategic elements of the process.
  4. Analyze/Optimize Capital Spend – Use variance analysis to help you dynamically reallocate funds based on the overall project performance to continuously maximize value and the ROI you’re getting from your portfolio.

Ben’s presentation is available here.  Want to learn more?  Contact UMT360 for a free demo to see how it works.

Talking Benefits Realization at the Microsoft Project Conference

Written by Ben Chamberlain on February 5th, 2014 at 4:22 pm

In a packed session in this week’s 2014 Microsoft Project Conference in Anaheim, UMT360’s Chief Product and Marketing Officer Ben Chamberlain talked about the importance of benefits realization and how UMT360 is helping organizations better achieve that.

Industry analysts agree that there’s an issue with organizations not realizing benefits from their investments – PPM is simply not delivering anticipated results.  Ben told the crowd that he feels one of the key reasons for this is the failure to look at projects as business investments.

“Today’s PMO tends to be more focused on some of the tactical aspects of the project such as resource management, schedule management, issue risk management and so forth… I’m not downplaying the importance of those metrics and activities. What I am saying is that if we believe these things to be business investments, we have to up level the importance of financial management and financial intelligence.”

Integrating financial management capabilities with PPM helps businesses effectively gauge the economic impact of under-performing projects and take corrective action.  Ben noted that one of the barriers to entry is the use of inadequate tools to integrate financial management and PPM including Excel, ERP systems and PPM systems themselves.

“Excel spreadsheets are disconnected, error prone, difficult to govern, report against and so forth.  ERP systems are still the system of record and should be treated so, but it’s really designed for the finance team not to provide the PPM teams with the financial views they need.  And traditional PPM systems are designed for strong execution oriented PPM capabilities but often lack the sophistication needed to effectively manage project and financial controls.”

UMT360 eliminates the need for Excel and better connects the ERP and PPM systems to provide integrated project and portfolio financial controls across the entire life cycle.  It helps build investment governance across the life cycle to manage costs, benefits and other needed financial structures; it helps build more reliable business cases and improve portfolio selection; and finally helps to more effectively track costs, look at variance analysis.

UMT360’s dashboard looks at the portfolio level and reveals whether an organization is achieving benefits – you can see where you are from a benefits realization perspective with respect to forecasts and which projects are under-performing from a benefit point of view.   Want to see what that looks like?  Click here to see Ben Chamberlain’s presentation which includes a mini-demo of the benefits realization features.

Reflecting on Microsoft’s 2006 Acquisition of UMT Innovation

Written by Ben Chamberlain on February 3rd, 2014 at 2:51 pm

The UMT360 team is enjoying a great first day at the Microsoft Project Conference in Anaheim, CA.  An energetic response to this morning’s keynote presentations from the GM for Microsoft Office Jared Spataro and the Director of Development for Project Server Ludovic Hauduc. Among highlights, talk about how these are days of rapid innovation and it’s time to look at how project and portfolio management fits in.

Also part of this morning’s conference opening was a look at Microsoft Project and the UMT-developed portfolio optimization capabilities that Microsoft acquired back in 2006.  Ludovic Hauduc commented on the 2006 acquisition recently saying, “What [the acquisition of UMT technology] did to the team was… to bring years of talent and expertise in the portfolio and project management area which to this day is something that is paying off in helping us understand the deep scenarios that allow customers to increase ROI, increase the value of their investment, and also continue delivering capabilities in the product such as Project 2013 which we released last year and Project Online which is available today as part of 365.”

Today, UMT360 is continuing to help Microsoft customers get more value from their PPM investments.  Visit us at Project Conference to learn more or email us at sales@umt360.com.

Announcement from UMT360 Partner – Project Hosts

Written by Ben Chamberlain on February 1st, 2014 at 5:01 pm

UMT360 partner Project Hosts today announced it has Private Custom Clouds available for UMT360’s complete line of Enterprise Portfolio Management Solutions at Project Conference 2014.  You can read Project Hosts’ full press release at http://www.digitaljournal.com/pr/1714870.    If you are attending the Microsoft Project Conference in Anaheim starting tomorrow, visit UMT360 at booth 501.