Mike Gruia

UMT360 Blog

The Enterprise’s Biggest Challenge – Bridging the Planning & Execution Gap

A recent UMT360 webinar attracted about 200 project management professionals interested in learning more about how today’s PMO can bridge the planning and execution gap. Judging from the responses to our poll questions during the presentation, nobody doubts that there is a gap. But it’s clear that many organizations are not quite sure what may …

Enterprise Architects: Mastering Digital Investment Management

We asked the audience attending a recent UMT360 webinar – comprised mostly of Enterprise Architects (EAs) – a few questions. I learn the most when I hear directly from the professionals in our industry, so I thought I’d share a few of the results that I found particularly illuminating. “There is one prerequisite for managing …

Digitalization And The Changing Role Of PPM

I am an avid proponent of the transformative effects of technology. Indeed, digitalizing traditional PPM is core to our mission of helping organizations bridge the gap between strategy and execution. That’s why the recent Q&A with Gartner “Thriving on Digital Chaos” caught my attention. It’s an interesting read, one that touches on the disruptive impact …

Mapping the Road from Investments to Value Realization

(Part five of a series on the forces helping to drive a tactical to strategic transformation of the PMO.) Effective planning and execution of strategic initiatives requires that processes, technology and implementation all be synchronized with company strategy. Organizations that ignore these dependencies risk not being able to implement even moderately complex programs. Project Gantt …

Linking Resource Allocation To Strategy

(Part four of a series on the forces helping to drive a tactical to strategic transformation of the PMO.) For many companies, the allocation of resources is driven from the bottom up. Allocation decisions are often disconnected from business capabilities, are commonly based only on one year of data, or are guided by a simple …

Prioritization – Making The Right Tradeoffs

(Part three of a series on the forces helping to drive a tactical to strategic transformation of the PMO.) A recent Gartner report provides some interesting perspective on the impact that prioritization has on today’s enterprise. Gartner reports that a majority of CIOs agree that non-prioritized, competing projects and programs are an obstacle to implementing …

Connecting Strategy to Execution

(Part two of a series on the forces helping to drive a tactical to strategic transformation of the PMO.) To be truly successful, every organization must have a well-articulated strategy. And it’s crucial that this strategy be tightly aligned with an execution plan. But for many, there’s still a significant gap between strategy and execution. …

Evolving From Tactical To Strategic PMO

(Part one of a series on the forces helping to drive a tactical to strategic transformation of the PMO.) For decades now, the PMO has been typically focused on tactical execution. Which is what made the keynote address at this year’s PMO Symposium – by one of the world’s foremost authorities on competitive advantage – …

How to Overcome IT Investment Roadblocks

Many of today’s processes and methods for managing technology investments were not designed for networked organizations operating at high speeds. Financial management best practices  were not created for programs, portfolios and assets. In a recent webinar, we polled attendees and asked them about which factors are most important in overcoming IT investment management roadblocks. The top top …

Stop Wasting Your IT Spend

Today enterprises waste more money on IT than ever before and it’s not as if the money is going into growing and transforming the business. What, then, is pushing costs into these stratospheric levels? Most of the money, an average 66% according to Gartner, goes into keeping the lights on and more than 6% is wasted …

Digitalized IT Maturity Evaluated at Gartner PPM & IT Governance Summit

Having just returned from Gartner’s PPM & IT Governance Summit in Maryland, I’ve been reflecting on the many great discussions our team had regarding Digitized IT and UMT360’s approach to Enterprise Portfolio Management (EPM).  Because we have long promoted the tenets of integration, transparency and digitalization as key to successful business investment management, it’s rewarding …

Strike & Maintain the Right Innovation Balance

IT and the business knows: The year-to-year viability of a company depends on its ability to innovate. We have learned over the years that innovation comes from three sources. Top Down – Driven by management imperatives (i.e. we have to be in the cloud) Bottom Up – Can originate anywhere in the organization, everyone participates and …

UMT360 Announces the Release of UMT360 Portfolios

UMT360 today announced the release of the newest module in its leading Enterprise Portfolio Management solution – UMT360 Portfolios.  UMT360 Portfolios connects siloed portfolios (e.g. project, application, IT Service and business capability) to build a dynamic blueprint of a company’s operating fabric.  It provides three breakthrough EPM models to help CIOs, Portfolio Managers and PMOs visualize …

Key Digital Models for CIO Management of Applications Investments

Gartner’s recently released 2014 CEO and Senior Executives Survey found that growth and IT are executive’s top priorities and those surveyed are talking about digital.  In Gartner’s announcement of the survey, VP and Gartner Fellow Mark Raskino said the CEO’s who say technology-related change is important to them, must now invest in that insight.  “Make the tough …

The CIO as Chief Investment Officer

I was reading a blog from a while back on the HBR Blog Network called “The Four Personas of the Next-Generation CIO.”   It was amazing to stop and think about how much has changed since the blog was written a few years ago.  While the issues for the CIO remain basically the same as in the …

Debunking the Growth Capacity Gap

In Gartner’s recently released 2014 CEO and Senior Executive Survey, a third of the executives surveyed named growth as their top priority.   Businesses want growth but face a series of challenges when it comes to finding ways to paying for it.   Among other things, the run-the-business investments are eroding capacity, consuming funds needed for growth, …

Three Steps Toward Benefits Realization

Research shows us that businesses rarely get full benefits from their investments.  It’s largely why Benefits Realization is such a hot topic today.  Defined by Gartner as the discipline organizations adopt to maximize the business value of projects and investments, Benefits Realization software allows senior management to see how specific investments align with the business so they’re better able …

5 Principles Essential to IT Cost Optimization

IT investments face a leaner, slimmer future but the companies that master IT investment cost optimization will emerge with better ROI on their investments.  IT investments are positioned as so essential to core operations and integral to business success that they often remain remarkably resistant to cutbacks, even in economic downturns.  Although IT investment budgets …

Should You Shift from a Project to Product-Based Investment Approach?

It’s been a topic of discussion by industry analysts in recent days – businesses making the move from a project to product-based investment approach. What’s the difference? In his latest white paper, UMT360 CEO Mike Gruia explains why the project-focused project and portfolio management (PPM) processes which organizations have used for the last decade are …