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2016

This blog supplements the BrightTALK “Resource Management in a Busy World: Delivering Results, Extending PPM Maturity.” My collaborator on the webinar is CA Services partner itdesign, which created two powerful CA PPM packaged work products (PWPs), Assignment Editor and Allocation Editor. These PWPs enhance project and resource managers’ visibility and editing options, helping them assign and align resources to projects, evaluate and normalize demand, and better understand available skills. The image below is an example of the information shared in the presentation of the tool:

 

 

The webcast describes the system, so I will focus on the processes that enable the tool to deliver the overall solution. Resource management (RM) is a relatively straightforward process, but CA PPM practitioners sometimes struggle to achieve expected outcomes. I maintain that the CA PPM system and PWPs provide working functionality, and that an enhanced tool may increase usability—a common theme in my PPM Insights blog series—but will also point out a few gaps in the process that can undermine success. So let’s explore some concepts and techniques I’ve used as a CA Services PPM architect, and garnered from PPM implementations, customers, colleagues and educational material.

 

First off, RM is imperative to understanding skills demand of prioritized investments, and can be an organizational differentiator by enabling portfolio capacity planning, resource optimization and even creating an agile structure; but seemingly modest functions like these are not always operationalized and matured:

 

  • Understanding effort investment: reporting on actuals/time entry
  • Managing assignments: identifying what the projects team members are working on/allocation and priority
  • Improving planning: seeing discrepancies between allocations and actuals
  • Informing decisions: staffing around investment priorities and demand v. capacity constraints

 

While examining the cause of this, I have put together a few constraints that I find myself addressing when designing a PPM RM strategy, as can you within your groups:

 

  • Missing holistic solution oversight due to lack of transparency and consistency among multiple processes that interact with each other, for example 1) project RM v. operational support RM and 2) internally facing v. externally facing projects. . .
  • Poor data quality due to a lifecycle that includes records passing between many sub-processes and groups with different standards, such as EPMO, satellite PMO, traditional waterfall, agile development, finance, executive planning, other work/ongoing investments . . .
  • Process maturity deviation between teams, like with 1) a project management team with a vetted lifecycle v. a project staffing team with no KPIs and minimal policies or 2) a portfolio planning team that uses role data from a team with mature rough order of magnitude (ROM) estimates for waterfall projects v. an agile team with non-dedicated team members. . .
  • Lack of organizational readiness strategy encompassing the entire solution ecosystem, often enabling a politically charged business value matrix where indiscriminate desired outcomes and solutions are supported, or not. . .

 

Below shows some simple/high level data input points of a RM process into the system, which will directly impact your ability to gain desired outputs. If any of these aspects breaks down, the overall ability to deliver is greatly undermined:

 

 

The point here is, that even when using a best-in-class tool, we still need the process to run smoothly, since many actors, policies, cadences, inputs and outputs are interconnected, so we need to address issues that can derail a PPM RM implementation holistically.

 

When I engage with customers, I formally and informally assess their risk factors, generally focusing on the concepts discussed here. I address the entire PPM RM strategy and all directly or indirectly impacted components in my designs for a new process, system implementation, maturing investment, simplification requirement, or cutover. This all-inclusive view of the flow reveals that the solution is only as valuable as its “weakest link”.

 

PPM RM value realization, most often comes from reporting, is delivered at the level of its process and system “weakest link”. In other words, we can’t report rich information if the data is poor. This chart visually describes the ability of the process, by function and group, to deliver the overall capabilities:

 

 

This “weakest link” model is especially visible with PPM RM, because of the many interactions, and if one set of actors or one process sub-set lacks quality, the entire solution is pulled down to its lowest common level. Below are tips and tricks I use when designing to mitigate this risk:

 

  • Document a high-level PPM purpose and process flow with owners and all RM inputs and outputs. If this is not as-is, I document best practices and review the as-is flow with the customer and require sign-off as part of the system design. Gap analysis by leveraging a best practice framework is often the driver of positive change.
  • Create a cadence and context calendar. This includes schedules that tie in-process investments and system inputs to outputs, as well as a data integrity audit. I use several homegrown concepts for this that mainly focus on clearly traced process action to value proposition (“from cog to cognizance”) and requirements that only include inputs that are tied to clear and present outputs (“organic audit”).
  • Build clear rules of engagement, policies, decision points and artifacts/deliverables for the process, and include them in relevant communications.
  • Implement an organizational readiness plan including, a formally structured communication methodology matrix, detailed schedule, and success measures.

For readers interested in more detail, check out DocOps and my Blog SeriesI encourage you to participate in the best-in-class CA Communities site, where we have access to our peers, events and support. You can also reach out to CA Services for individualized business outcome references and analysis. Feel free to post in the comments section of this blog or contact me directly via email and @PPMWarrior.

Our CA PPM team is looking forward to seeing our customers at CA World 2016. We have a full schedule with a dozen pre con education sessions led by CA pre-sales and partner experts, 12 CA product management sessions focused on the value and vision of CA PPM, 8 demo pods, as well as over 15 customer and community member sessions from our vibrant PPM community!

 

I have the fortunate opportunity to help manage our PPM presence at CAW and I’m pleased to represent the hundreds of CA team members creating a great customer experience. Here are a few reasons why I’m excited about our 2016 agenda designed to help you, our PPM customer achieve success:

 

  • Get “hands-on” with CA PPM’s newest release, 15.1, and test drive the latest innovations for enhancing the end user experience
  • Attend product innovation sessions where you’ll have first-hand input into future PPM capabilities and direction
  • Listen to sessions from our PPM community on different use cases for CA PPM, ranging from capabilities like resource and demand management to portfolio management, as well as business initiatives like M&A and ePMO
  • Hear from customers who have migrated to the cloud, capitalizing on their investments
  • Watch our user group presidents discuss best practices for user group meetings on how to engage, reach and involve local PPM communities
  • Meet with CA Services personnel and our partners to understand how to drive more value out of your CA PPM investment
  • Meet with senior leadership of the CA PPM support, development, services and sales teams
  • Join several tech talks from the PPM product management team discussing the latest solution capabilities including the 15.1 release
  • Visit our demo booth and pre con ed sessions to understand in-depth technical and functional aspects of the solution
  • Understand how to capture Agile execution information to support a growing portfolio of traditional + agile projects & programs
  • See Kurt Steinle present our CA PPM roadmap and vision

 

I speak for our entire team when I say we look forward to seeing you in Las Vegas this November.

 

Our Agenda Builder is now live and here’s some quick instructions for building your agenda*. (attached to this blog is a document on agenda builder instructions as well)

 

Sign into access the Agenda Builder: https://www.travelhq.com/events/caworld16/registration/registration-login2.mtc

  • Please have your confirmation code ready
  • You can search sessions by using the filters on the left hand side of the catalog (content area = Agile Management and interest = Project & Portfolio Management
  • To add sessions to your agenda, click on the plus button
  • Once you have created your agenda, you have the option to do the following; ‘Print My Agenda,’ ‘Email My Agenda,’ and ‘Add My Agenda to Outlook.’

 

Regards,

 

Jeff Moloughney

 

*ONLY registered attendees can access the Agenda Builder and create an agenda. For registered attendees, build your agenda by logging into the registration site using your confirmation code and selecting ‘Agenda Builder.’

To follow up on my previous reporting blog, which focused on purpose and process, I will delve into system “Advanced Reporting” as it pertains to your organizations now and as you continue to follow your roadmap.

 

Insightful reports are essential to gain desired outcomes from CA PPM. While meeting with practitioners, customers and fellow consultants, I’ve seen increased buzz around the CA PPM’s built-in Jaspersoft interactive reports and dashboards engine. Much of this excitement is justifiably centered on the user-friendly, powerful features.

 

Many organizations are upgrading or planning their roadmaps to leverage CA PPM’s latest release (15.1), including recreating and enhancing existing reports and dashboards to align with the updated tool. In this blog, I’ll discuss my experiences as a road warrior using CA PPM 15.1 and Jaspersoft 6.2.x, and if you’ve followed my previous posts, you know that I often focus on the features’ process and system usability aspects.

 

This blog is not meant to be a demo, but I have included a few images of the Jaspersoft interface from within CA PPM. When you’re in the application, you’ll find brief overviews with links to formal tutorials at each title: “Ad Hoc Views,” “Reports” and “Dashboards.” Please note that access to functionality is managed through the security model:

 


 

It’s important to highlight that going forward  (starting 14.4), CA will support only Jaspersoft as CA PPM’s internal advanced reporting engine. This means that customers who want to stay on the latest version(s) of CA PPM, whether it’s SaaS or on-premises, need to convert to Jaspersoft or externally manage non-Jaspersoft reports and dashboards. This investment in system maturity will enable PPM practitioners to deliver key benefits to their organizations.

  

So . . . if you have not yet cut over to Jaspersoft or you’re interested in expanding its capabilities, below are some compelling features that I’ve seen in the field:

 

Ad Hoc data analysis, similar to a pivot table, enables simple reports to be created on the fly by users, system admins and reporting teams. This gives you the power to build views and insights around data, as you need it. In addition, these can be saved for future use, with the ability to convert to reports for full exporting, scheduling and dashboarding functionality:

 


 

Scheduling and Exporting delivery of reports sent in a number of formats via email or output to repository (saved online in Jaspersoft for future reference) is also key. This expands the opportunity to leverage reports via a “push” model, often times benefitting those who are mainly outside of CA PPM, but still rely on the reporting, like executives. This is a strategic component to be considered when building your cadence and context requirements, as discussed in the previous reporting blog:

 

 

Dashboards built from groups of simple to sophisticated reports that tell an impactful and concise story in a single view is also available. Here users can display charts, tables, text and other content that gives a rounded understanding of the data, with the intent to gain further insights:

 

 

Data Warehouse for reporting improves performance by reducing strain on the system and lends itself to trending, benchmarking and analytics. Technically, this is a big win and I want to identify it, as we have discussed reporting roadmaps and the ability to mature.

 

With these new features, users have access to a simple yet powerful experience. As we all know, usability is imperative to user adoption, which in turn drives an organization’s desired outcomes. As PPM system and process practitioners, we can greatly improve a solution’s value by enabling the people who use the tool. I hope the information I provide here and in my previous blogs helps you do just that.

 

For readers interested in more detail, CA World is the perfect time and place to see presentations and demos. If you haven’t registered yet, you can do so here. I also encourage you to participate in the best-in-class CA Communities site, where you have access to communications, events and support. In addition, you can reach out to CA for individualized business outcomes, references and analysis. Feel free to post in the comments section of this blog or contact me directly via email and Twitter @PPMWarrior.

am1

5 Awesome Features of 15.1

Posted by am1 Champion Sep 7, 2016

15.1 is finally here and with it comes a great new UX, so no surprise in my top 5 they feature highly!

 

what features are you most excited for?

 

1. New UX - An interactive status report

The user can re-arrange or hide the status widgets as they want. 

This is great and I'm looking forward to how it will evolve over the coming releases

Before

 

Re-arranged

 

Oh and it auto saves

 

2. New UX - Timesheet populate options

When you go to complete your timesheet you now get an option asking you what you want to do

Which results in the timesheet completed like last week

 

3. New UX - Timeshet Approval Kanban

In the new UX we not only have a great new timesheet but an even easier to use timesheet approval area. 

  • We can see the timesheets across their various states and send reminders

  • Have conversations with the resource about the timesheet

 

even view a little summary of the resources timesheet

 

 

4. New UI - Ability to have conversations in the project

The team can collaborate via conversations in an easy way. 

This is looking great, but i'd like to see this implemented too.New UX - Ability to link/reply to conversations 

 

5. Ability to turn on user tracing with zero effort

You can now turn user tracing on by simply navigating to the user account and setting the required value

a tracing log (app-trace.xmlis then populated in the log folder and can be used for investigation

 

*this can have a performance impact so as per the warning,  use only under the direction of CA Support.

 

 

 

Release notes

You can find the full release notes of all the new features and changes here

Release Notes - CA PPM - 15.1 - CA Technologies Documentation