Skip navigation
All Places > Clarity PPM > Blog > 2017 > March
2017

Hi PPM practitioners—welcome back! In my first blog in this series, I covered the basics of CA PPM Financial Planning by defining core capabilities. In this post (and next one), I will address essential elements of setting up CA PPM Financial Planning.

We will start with the Financial Framework. To support your financial planning model, you should first define the internal structure for tracking financial information, consisting of an entity and its associated locations and departments.

Entity

An entity represents the highest level of the financial tracking structure and is typically the overall organization’s name. You can define multiple entities if your organization has subsidiaries that keep separate general ledgers. Using multiple entities is also an option for companies supporting financial planning in multiple currencies, but use caution, because information cannot be shared across entities and adds additional administration complexity. For most PPM implementations, a single entity representing the overall company is all you need.

Financial Framework

Locations

Locations typically represent the geographical locations where you conduct business and must be associated to a single entity. When multiple entities are created and a location supports both entities, set up two locations. It’s also possible to set up parent/child locations. Locations that you create are automatically added to the location organizational breakdown structure (OBS). Unless you use PPM Chargebacks for inter-departmental transfers and/or establish a rate matrix model for resources with rates that vary by location/region, you can generally establish a single default location.

Departments

Departments represent the company’s organizational units (cost centers) that perform work on investments and/or receive the services. Departments must be associated to a single entity and may be associated to one or more locations. It’s also possible to set up parent/child departments. This is an area that should be thought through carefully with the financial team and kept as simple as possible. As noted with locations, you may be able to get by with a basic structure that represents the organization at a high level and add more detailed org unit breakouts as the need arises. Start with the minimum departments needed to support financial cost center tracking for investments. Be careful not to mix up the need for modeling the cost center structure with the resource pool structure for staffing resources. If they are the same, you can often use the department OBS for both. If not (financial tracking trumps), consider creating a separate resource pool OBS to support staffing.

Prerequisites

A few prerequisites need to be created before building the financial framework.

  • Currency: CA PPM supports single or multiple currencies. If multiple currencies are used, this decision is typically made and defined during CA PPM installation. One currency may be defined as the system currency (home currency) and must be defined before setup of the financial framework. If multiple currencies are used, foreign exchange rates need to be defined from/to each currency supported before processing financial transactions.
  • Location OBS: A location OBS placeholder needs to be defined before creating the entity. Location OBS units are automatically created as locations are defined.
  • Department OBS: A department OBS placeholder needs to be defined before creating the entity. Department OBS units are automatically created as departments are defined.

Entity Definition

Fiscal Periods

Fiscal time periods (not to be confused with time sheet periods) are created to support use of detailed financial plans or chargeback rules and are defined at the entity level. For example, if your investment cost needs to be planned by month, configure monthly periods (beginning with the earliest planning month) through the longest planning period to be supported on investments. Fiscal periods may be created for the following types: 13 periods, weekly, monthly, semi-monthly, quarterly, and annually. Add additional fiscal periods as needed as part of annual maintenance. Once a fiscal period has been used on an investment plan, you cannot modify the period’s dates or deactivate it.

Note: Beginning with CA PPM 15.2, fiscal periods are required to support the telescoping feature in the new Resource Management user experience.

Coming Soon

In my next blog, I’ll cover the key financial classifications needed to support financial planning setup.

In Case You Missed It

 

Taking the Mystery out of Financial Planning – Part 1 (The Basics)

 

 

 

 

 

 

Readers interested in more detail around CA PPM Financial Planning can check out DocOps. I encourage you to participate in the best-in-class CA Communities site, where you have access to your peers, events and support. You can also reach out to CA Services for information about CA PPM and individualized business outcome references and analysis. Feel free to post in the comments section of this blog or contact me directly via email and Twitter @kdobsonppm.

Hi PPM practitioners! I am an architect in the CA Services PPM practice, and former CA customer. Over the years, I have been amazed that many of my fellow practitioners shy away from implementing financial management, thinking that it is too complicated or that they are not that savvy about financials. That’s why I am writing a series of blogs to take some of the mystery out of CA PPM Financial Planning and unravel the perceived complexity.

In this initial blog, I will define PPM Financial Planning’s core capabilities. This will give you a sense of where to start your journey. In later blogs, we will explore the capabilities in further detail (the good, the bad and the ugly).

The Basics

It will simplify things to break down PPM Financial Planning into 5 basic pillars, along with a supporting setup structure. This will help you figure out which core capabilities are more critical to your organization's desired outcomes and establish a maturity roadmap. In this post, I’ll assume that you are ready to move beyond the general financial cost/budget on the investment’s financial summary page to explore the value-added capabilities of CA PPM Financial Planning.Financial Planning Pillars

Pillar 1 - Investment Cost

Pillar 1 is about planning and tracking the cost of your investments. The major sub-components are forecasting, budgeting, benefit planning, and capturing actual cost. At a minimum, I suggest you plan/forecast  the expected cost of your investments (projects, applications, assets, services, products and other work). Start with projects in which you are already creating Excel-based requests for expenditure - don't try to undertake everything at first - give yourself time to learn and optimize. (My mantra is “Do the basics well and then build out.”) You can forecast (via CA PPM Cost Plan) as a simple breakout by period of basic investment expenses you need to track, such as labor, hardware, software, travel, etc.

CA PPM Cost Plan Details

It is also important to capture an approved budget for tracking spend performance throughout each investment’s lifecycle. Forecasted spend may vary from month to month, but ideally not beyond the approved budget limit. CA PPM supports re-forecasting spend by period without touching the approved budget. During the open planning cycle, or as authorized by your organization’s change control procedure, you can submit a revised budget for the investment(s) for approval while retaining budget history.

CA PPM Budget Plan

As your organization matures, you may also want to forecast expected benefits to be received from investments. This enables leadership to better assess expected return on each investment, a critical element of sound portfolio planning. You want to spend resources (money and people) on the right investments.

CA PPM Benefit Plan

To maximize value from planning investment cost, it is important to track actual cost incurred by each investment (labor and non-labor expenses). Actual cost may come from time entry, manually entered actual cost transactions (via transaction entry) and/or transactions imported from an external source. Actual cost may be viewed from the Cost and Budget Plans as shown above and in other Portlets within CA PPM. Below is example of the investment Hierarchy view showing comparison of actual to planned, budget, and benefit. The second view shows a list of the detailed transactions making up the actuals posted against the investment.

CA PPM Hierachy Actual vs Plan and Budget

 

CA PPM Posted Transactions

Pillar 1’s final element is a period-driven rate matrix (aka rate card) that defines how resources should be costed. This can be as simple as a single fully-loaded blended rate for internal resources or roles, or it can be broken out with different rates by type of resource/role, location, etc. The rate matrix is particularly helpful in automatically monetizing planned resource labor on investments for forecasting purposes, translating time entry into resource cost and/or costing out imported transactions.

CA PPM Rate Matrix

Pillar 2 - Time Tracking

At first glance you may question why time tracking is part of financial planning. I’m glad you asked! Time tracking is the simplest way to capture labor cost on an investment, not to mention foundational to effective schedule management.

CA PPM Timesheets

Pillar 3 - Capitalization

Many organizations need to track capitalized expenditures separate from operating expenses for financial reporting and compliance reasons. CA PPM supports this using the Cost Type feature. While there are various ways to do this, the most basic is to categorize costs as capital or operating by default at the project level (e.g., if the entire project is operational cost), task level (phase/type work varies between capital and operating) or team level, where each resource may specify a flat percentage of capitalization.

CA PPM Gantt View with Cost Type

Pillar 4 - Cost Allocation and Recovery (Chargebacks)

CA PPM supports the ability to inter-transfer (allocate/debit) investment cost back to other departments for their share of the cost, for specific period(s), using the Chargeback functionality. A corresponding recovery (credit) is issued to the departments that performed the work. The debit rule for the inter-transfers may be set up at the system or investment level. Charges may be applied to a single department or spread across multiple departments by percentage and period based on qualifying rules. Credit rules are applied at the system level only.

CA PPM Cost Allocations

Pillar 5 - Financial Reporting

Several out-of-the-box reports provide a great starting point for financial planning and tracking. Some reports enable planning or budgeting vs actual cost analysis, and others support capital/operating expense analysis. One report lists actual cost transactions by investment / resource / date. An exciting element since the Jaspersoft reporting engine was introduced in CA PPM 14, is the ability to easily create other ad hoc reports with the convenience of CA PPM Data Warehouse (DWH), which comes with ready-built domains for reporting and supports inclusion of custom attributes in DWH.

CA PPM Transaction Inquiry Report

Coming Soon

In my next blog, I’ll explain the foundational financial setup, discuss the various classifications and show how they support financial planning.

 

Readers interested in more detail around CA PPM Financial Planning can check out DocOps. I encourage you to participate in the best-in-class CA Communities site, where you have access to your peers, events and support. You can also reach out to CA Services for information about CA PPM and individualized business outcome references and analysis. Feel free to post in the comments section of this blog or contact me directly via email and Twitter @kdobsonppm.

am1

5 Awesome Features of 15.2

Posted by am1 Champion Mar 13, 2017

15.2 is finally out and there are so many good new features, especially for the resource manager.

Here are 5 of the best. Enjoy

 

Don't forget to read through the CA first look blogs too.

PPM Insights: FIRST LOOK at CA PPM 15.2’s Enhanced Time and Work Transparency 

PPM Insights: FIRST LOOK at CA PPM 15.2’s Resource Management 

PPM Insights: FIRST LOOK at CA PPM 15.2’s Adaptive Project Management and Conversations 

The specified item was not found. 

 

1. Improved conversations

We can now reply back to a conversation and even mention a user

Notification appears for the user and can navigate to project easily

 

 

mention @team to notify all of the team

 

 

2. Resource Management Telescope

A new feature added is the "telescope", this makes it easy to find over and under allocation and even drill into the problem period(s). 

It can be configured for different tolerances by the user.

 

3. Password reset module

In the new UX we finally have a password reset ability, that doesn't involve contacting support. (non SSO)

 

enter your username and press "send email", simple.

 

4. New document management

 

In the project we now have a way to share and organise documents

we can tag and even search

 

5. Resource Management - Pinning resources

The new resource management makes it easy to update and manage allocations, it makes it even easier with the ability to pin resources.  Think of these as your favourites which need frequent intervention.

 

simply find the resource and pin

 

 

Hope you enjoyed this quick round up of best features, but there's so much more in this release. Please take a look at the full documentation

CA PPM - CA PPM - 15.2 - CA Technologies Documentation 

It’s alive! The latest CA PPM release (15.2) is now public. This blog series is our first look into the solution’s enhancements and how they help us deliver desirable value outcomes to our organizations. Other blogs in this series include:

  • Adaptive Project Management and Conversations
  • Reinventing Resource Management
  • CA PPM and Agile Central Better Together

 

Check them out here.

 

This post focuses on PPM timesheet transparency, features that respond to customer requests by expanding the timesheet user experience, and include the ability to:

  • Enter and submit time for others
  • Approve time for others and improved filtering

 

We’ve taken PPM’s simple and intuitive time entry navigation, which is imperative for user adoption and quality data, a step further. Designated resources can now enter, submit and approve time for others, allowing security enabled resources to take actions on behalf of timesheet users and managers as to ensure governance.

 

Enter and Submit Time for Others:

 

Upon authentication, Derrick, a designated resource, lands on current time period. Derrick can enter his own time; he can also “Select resource to enter time,” an icon that is displayed only on the screens of users who have the appropriate security rights.

 

 

The next screen displays the security-enabled list of resources for whom Derrick may enter time. The pre-populated time period is the same as the time period Derrick selected on his own timesheet. This may be changed from the date ribbon on the subsequent time entry screen. Filtering on resource name is also available.

 

Note: If Derrick is not required to enter time himself, but is tasked with entering time for others, he would navigate directly to this screen rather than his own individual timesheet, as shown in the previous screen.

 

 

Upon selecting Tony Trainer, Derrick finds Tony’s name in the header bar; the date ribbon is pre-populated to the current week. From here Derrick can copy a previous timesheet, add assigned tasks or selectively add specific work. If there is a previous timesheet, Derrick has the option to copy previous time entries, with or without copying hours. Note: The system does not copy hours entered on non-working days.

 

 

On the banner for Tony Trainer, Derrick can go back to “Select Resource” or “Close.” If there are current task assignments, Derrick has an option to add all assigned tasks for the period. There will always be an option to add “Work” to an empty timesheet. Derrick can also see how many hours have been recorded and what percentage of recorded time is charged to projects. Many organizations have project time goals for their team, so this feature helps us stay on schedule.

 

 

The list of tasks available to select are shown for all investments for which Tony is a team member, and we can use advanced filtering to find the tasks that we need to enter time for.

 

 

Upon confirming the correct tasks, Derrick may add “Details” and “Notes.” When Derrick selects a value, like “Charge Code,” options will automatically display for browsing. As Derrick starts to enter values, auto suggest will narrow the list. Previous functionalities such as “Duplicate Task” and “Delete Task” are still available. When this window is closed, Derrick may submit the timesheet.

 

 

Approve Time for Others and Improved Filtering:

 

To approve time, Derrick selects the “Review & Approve” tab, which is available because he has approver rights. By default, his direct team members are displayed, but Derrick can also filter on Resource Manager. This will display all the resources Derrick has rights to. This enables him to take action for a Resource Manager who has allowed Derrick to act as his/her behalf.

 

 

The above functionalities can be key features for organizations that rely on time entry and/or approval proxy. Like many of my posts, this focuses on how usability enables governance, and is a great example PPM Practitioners can leverage.

 

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.

The CA PPM Practitioners have spoken, and CA has been listening! The latest CA PPM release (15.2) is now public. This blog series is our first look into the solution’s enhancements and how they help us deliver desirable value outcomes to our organizations. Other blogs in this series include:

  • Enhanced Time and Work Transparency
  • Reinventing Resource Management
  • CA PPM and Agile Central Better Together

 

Check them out here.

 

This post focuses on adaptive project management and conversations, some very exciting features that enable teams to communicate more effectively! Our key topics are below:

  • Enhanced conversations
  • @mention Notifications
  • “My Tasks” filter
  • PDF Status Report Generation (introduced in 15.1.0.1)
  • Document Management

 

Throughout the following screen shots, we will review updates within CA PPM that allows us to focus on our teams and what matters most – the delivery of work. In addition, it is mobile by nature. We can open this on smart devices and can scroll through sections to get the information we need.

 

Traditional PPM solutions have required significant training which extends our time to productivity.  CA has transformed an on-boarding process that might have taken days or weeks, and gotten users productive in minutes.  This is an immediate ROI and we haven’t even left the first screen:

 

 

When we click into a project, governed by security, we can see key project activities, including conversations, tasks, status and documents. Also, just as the previous release, the capability function icons are on the left-hand bar, including toggling back to “Classic PPM” and a ribbon on top with effort spent, budget spent and finish date. In addition, key milestones are displayed.

 

 

One of the most exciting features is conversations. Within our project team, we can have discussion treads, leveraging @mentions and notifications. Resource lookups are also available here.

 

 

Upon creating content, we can edit and delete.

 

 

In addition to the conversations wall, we are notified in the top right and can scroll all mentions and discussions that we are a part of.

 

 

We can click into the notification for more detail and actions.

 

 

These notifications are also listed in the “Classic PPM” view, so even if we are not actively using the new user experience, we are still able to stay abreast of the activity.

 

 

The next section is tasks; where we can filter, add, assign resources and manage project tasks.

 

 

The status section further enhances the previous version with the ability to preview current reports.

 

 

This preview enables us to view the pre-published version, as well as download and print to PDF.

 

 

Last but certainly not least is the documents. This simplified user experience allows project teams to search, add, modify, download, delete and tag documents within a simple folder structure.

 

 

The visual folder structure is another way to navigate to the contents.

 

 

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.

The CA PPM Practitioners have spoken, and CA has been listening! The latest CA PPM release (15.2) is now public. This blog series is our first look into the solution’s enhancements and how they help us deliver desirable value outcomes to our organizations. Other blogs in this series include:

  • Adaptive Project Management and Conversations
  • Enhanced Time and Work Transparency
  • CA PPM and Agile Central Better Together

Check them out here.

This post focuses on the new User Experience (UX) expansion to include Resource Management. I am so excited to share some of the highlights of this functionality with you! Customers have long requested many of these features and they have arrived.

Resource Management New UX

Logging into the new UX brings us to the Projects landing page. Clicking on the Resources icon (outlined in red) takes us to the Resources landing page. The top of the page shows resources we have booking rights to or who are our direct reports. The bottom of the page shows requests for roles that need to be filled.

Two views are available – Investments to Resources and Resources to Investments. We can switch between views by clicking on Investments to Resources or Resources to Investments in the upper left corner.

Resources to Investments View

This view shows the resource allocation information in a time-scaled view. Because allocation data is color coded, we can easily see under-allocated resources in green and over-allocated resources in red. The blue and white circles let us know there are soft bookings. Both of these indicate places we need to focus.

We can resolve allocation issues, hard book resources, and balance our team’s workload. Filtering this view by Resource Manager allows us to focus on our own team.

Investments to Resources View

This view shows investments we have view or edit rights to and resource allocation information. From here we can update resource allocations to specific investments.

Expanding the arrow by the investment will show us of resources and roles allocated to the investment. If we have rights, we can replace roles with resources, change allocation information, add roles or resources, etc. in this view. This is also useful for Project Managers to find and add roles or resources to their projects.

 

Requests

As an example, we can add a Systems Analyst to the project, then add detail to the request by clicking on the role name. The detail includes the start and finish date of the allocation, the forecast rate for the role (the target rate for cost), and the Resource Manager who should fill this role.

Clicking on the Conversations tab allows us to add more information about the request, tagging the Resource Manager so he/she is notified.

The tagged Resource Manager can log in and review the conversation, look at the request, add to the conversation, and fill the role with a resource.

Telescoping and User Settings

Since we always look at staffing for a rolling time horizon, we need to define the scale of the time periods looking forward. We can adjust the time periods available for selection by clicking the down arrow by our name, then clicking Settings.

In Settings, we select the start period, and the number of periods for each type. Time periods are based on fiscal periods created in CA PPM. Below we see Monthly, Quarterly, and Annually have been created and can be selected.

Also on this screen are the allocation threshold, units, and decimal settings that we can adjust. Updates are automatically saved, and clicking Close takes us back.

Next we can select the time periods are shown on the screen by clicking on the telescope icon (outlined in red).

The next screen displays the configured time periods – 11 months, 4 quarters, and 2 years. The light green color identifies under-allocation, the red color identifies over-allocation, the white color is the sweet spot between under and over allocation, and the bright green identifies no allocation. Blue indicates the selected time periods to show in the view.

Pinning and Filtering

Clicking in the space before the ">" value adds the pin icon next to resource names. We can then narrow our focus to these resources by clicking the "PINNED" tab.

Now we can fix the resources/ under/over-allocation issues, then click the "ALL" tab to see the whole list again. We can then unpin these resources by clicking the "X" and selecting a new set of resources to focus on.

Select, Copy-and-Paste and Select-and-Delete

Making changes is even easier with copy-and-paste. We select a cell (outlined in blue) and press CTRL-C to copy the value. Or we can copy values from a spreadsheet.

Then we select the cells (outlined in blue below) we want to change.

Press CTRL-V to paste the value into these cells.

Visual Indicators and Icons

The new UX has many visual indicators and icons that show us what we need to do. Below is a graphic with this information for you to reference.

Setup

Setting up the new user interface is done by our CA PPM administrator and includes running a few jobs, setting up some financial information, and adding security rights to correct groups.

For readers interested in more detail, check out DocOps. I encourage you to participate in the best-in-class CA Communities site, where you have access to your peers, events and support. You can also reach out to CA Services for information about CA PPM Release 15.2 upgrades/implementations, and individualized business outcome references and analysis. Feel free to post in the comments section of this blog or contact me directly via email and Twitter @janetulrich.