Tuesday, November 05, 2013

Problem 2- Reporting Instead of Managing

The task of reporting progress of a project to other stakeholders monopolizes a considerable amount of a project manager’s time. The purpose of this reporting can often be unclear as the people who are concerned with it are not actively involved in the project. If these people are actively involved in the project, they are getting their information directly on a day-to-day or a week-to-week basis. Primarily, two things cause this problem:

1.     The adoption of control-based project management methodologies that require reporting for the sake of reporting so that governance models are complied with.
2.     The use of closed systems that cannot be accessed by other people either outside the project team or, in some cases, even within the project team itself.

Prince2 and PMBoK derived methodologies are full of reporting requirements that are excellent at consuming the project manager’s time. With monthly status reports, end stage reports, project management plans etc, these reports integrate the nine functions of project management and therefore, require the project manager to integrate these nine systems to manage their project. This task is tiresome, and extracting the information from a plethora of disparate systems and inserting them into monthly PowerPoint slides is the bane of many a project manager’s existence.

UniPhi's project portfolio software's core design premise is one of transparency. Tacit information needs to be removed from the project environment so that all parties involved (and some that are not) can participate with all the information at hand. This way finds that issues are more innovatively resolved.

UniPhi's software features support all nine functions and, being a web based tool, it is accessed and used by all people within the project environment. All relevant data is captured just once in the tool and is then available for use many times through different views, some focusing on one specific area and others integrating all nine into an overall status for the project.  

UniPhi’s software provides for default views that target the roles of the user. When the user logs in they can see, not only, how projects they’re directly involved in are performing, but also see how other projects they’re governing are travelling. This also allows them to view how all other projects across the organisation are going as they progress.

The ultimate goal in using the tool is to remove the need to report. The achievement of this goal frees up the time of the project manager and allows them to spend more time facilitating the resolution of other issues or the mitigation of risks.

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