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2017
Alf-Abuhajleh

Upgrade to CA PPM 15.2

Posted by Alf-Abuhajleh Employee Jun 30, 2017

Three Easy Steps to CA PPM 15.2

Step 1:

See what's new in CA Project & Portfolio Management 15.2

CA PPM 15.2 - New Resource Management   Watch Overview [44:26]  |  Visit Page  |  Play Video [2:25]

 

 

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Step 2a:

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Take advantage of the latest advances in reporting, time management and resource planning.

 

Step 2b:

Migrate to CA PPM SaaS 15.2

More than 400 companies already run CA PPM as a cloud-based service to reduce costs, drive adoption and make smarter business decisions.

 

 

Step 3: 

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Return to CA PPM Communities.

We recently spoke to Rick Morris of R2 Consulting about the fusion of agile methodologies, business processes and project management. Enclosed is an excerpt. Watch the full AgilityCast interview here.

 

Q: Why is business agility so important?

A: For so long, in project management, things seemed to take forever. By the time a project was finished we couldn’t really adapt to the market place. So, people started to focus on business agility through agile practices to respond to customer demand, changes in the workplace and the application market, where the time from idea to outcome has become so much faster that you have to react in a quicker way to stay relevant.

 

Q: Are you saying we should use agile in project management?

A: What I am seeing in the market place is what we call “agile theatre.” People are attempting to become agile but they are not looking at it from a top-down approach. They may be able to develop code faster but if they can’t release that code or get it out to the market faster, what good is it to develop faster. Now we can change what we are doing every quarter versus waiting a year to start a new project.

 

Q: Is the change to business agility slow?

A: It’s extremely slow. You are talking about a whole new way of looking at business and business practices. The command-and-control scenarios of most companies don’t allow for agility. That is why a lot of people have become frustrated. Agile isn’t new, it’s been around forever, but we are just now starting to operationalize it. The Empire State Building was actually done with agile: They did a floor a day.

 

Q: Should we use scrum teams and Kanban in project management?

A: It’s different. Project managers are scared of agile. Project managers are still trying to figure out how agile delivery fits into a Gantt chart. Where project managers need to focus now is on how to distribute resources and aligning to strategy and budget – letting some of that command and control go. We’re seeing project managers becoming more of strategically focused, understanding and balancing the portfolios versus getting into the details of the Gantt charts.

 

Q: What are the major benefits from business agility?

A: If you do it properly you’ll definitely see an increase in productivity and revenue. And the reason for that is most people look at projects and think they can do everything. What you end up doing are few projects well, with a lot of failures. If you can work on the right projects at the right time – that’s what portfolio management is all about. The problem with that approach two or three years ago was that every project was a yearlong. So, by the time you’d finished the project the business had changed.

 

Watch the full AgilityCast episode.

 

 

What's your take? Comment below or find me @alfzoo. Alf Abuhajleh works in CA PPM product marketing.

Hi PPM practitioners! The concept of technical debt came up recently with a customer and it provoked quite a discussion. So, I thought I’d share a few insights about this fondly (or not-so-fondly) used term.

 

What is Technical Debt?

 

Technical Debt1Let me start by saying that I don’t profess to be an expert in code design, although I have warm memories from days of compiling PL/1 and Cobol code to get the Assembly machine language to look for code inefficiencies. Anyway, the term “technical debt” has been credited to Ward Cunningham, one of the authors of the Agile Manifesto; he used it as an analogy to describe refactoring they did on a financial application. As he said, “Some problems with code are like financial debt. It’s OK to borrow against the future, as long as you pay it off.” See www.agilealliance.org/introduction-to-the-technical-debt-concept/. Great analogy!

 

Organizations have continued to broaden the use of technical debt as a metaphor for anything from temporary code, outdated code and dirty code to design flaws. No wonder my suggestion that my client had incurred technical debt with their use of CA PPM provoked such a negative response. I think Cunningham’s intent was close to my meaning: In the context of CA PPM, I use the term to mean that making customizations to the as-shipped product that deviate from CA recommended and supported practice will eventually incur operational support costs. Such customizations may require future remediation or refactoring after an upgrade or to become compliant if the customer moves to a CA software-as-a-service (SaaS) architecture. An example of this would be performing direct database updates using a gel process or via data manipulation/definition statements. Technical debt does not necessarily imply poor technical design—rather that one should consider that remediation will likely be needed sooner or later.

 

When Does CA PPM Technical Debt Make Sense?

 

Technical Debt2The answer is ultimately up to each customer. From my experience, it’s always best to minimize customizations, but customers running CA PPM on premise will occasionally employ customizations to support a business requirement. In those scenarios, the customer has carefully weighed the pros and cons of supportability / maintainability and has determined that the value gained from meeting the desired business outcome exceeds operational costs of remediation due to an upgrade, feature redesign, or future decision to move to SaaS. Refer to CA’s customization policy for guidelines.

Readers interested in more detail around CA PPM 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.

Help us serve you better.

Take one minute to answer this incredibly short survey about your plans to upgrade - or not - to CA PPM 15.3, which is coming out later this fall. We appreciate your help.

 

- CA PPM Team

Kathy Dobson

PPM Insights: OBS Power

Posted by Kathy Dobson Employee Jun 8, 2017

Hi PPM practitioners! I’m sure many of you will weigh in on this topic. It’s one of the basic elements of implementing CA PPM, but I get a lot of questions from customers on how and when to leverage the CA PPM organizational breakdown structure (aka OBS).

 

OBS Defined

Project Properties ExampleThe OBS is a powerful CA PPM feature that enables a hierarchical representation/categorization of data to be defined and assigned to most studio-created data objects (e.g., resources, ideas, projects, portfolios, etc.), including custom objects. It differs from a lookup-type attribute, which is just that—a data point that you select from a list of values. With an OBS, you select from a list of values but can also do the following:

- Grant security permissions to CA PPM users for specific data instances based on their OBS membership. Example, if you want to implement guidelines that enable PMs to update projects within their department only, or resource managers to book projects for their team members only, using an OBS is a perfect way to do it.

- Categorize data object instances such as resources and projects for portlet and report filtering (e.g., by Organizational OBS, line of business OBS, etc.)

 

Should I Use a Lookup or an OBS?

Portlet Report ClusterMy best advice is to consider carefully how you will use the data. If you will use it as common criteria for filtering data instances to be included in reports or portlets, and/or to govern security permissions, consider OBS. Most out-of-the-box CA PPM portlets and reports (and all object list pages) can be filtered by one or more OBSs.

If a custom lookup is defined, portlets created with an object data provider (instead of a query) can be configured to use the lookup. However, query-based portlets and out-of-the-box reports must be modified to leverage the custom lookup. There’s value in both methods.

For older versions of CA PPM that still leverage the Data Mart, a maximum of five OBSs are supported. The flexibility of Jaspersoft/ Data Warehouse removes this restriction, but most organizations have fewer than five OBSs.

 

OBS Components

An OBS is composed of the following components:

  • OBS name: Think of this as an OBS type to specify how the OBS will be used. Common OBS examples include:
    • Organizational (to model the organization’s team structure)
    • Department (similar to organizational, but it models the financial cost center structure and is used by CA PPM financials). This is a required OBS, but default value can be set up if financials aren’t used.
    • Lines of business (to identify the sponsoring or funding org)
    • Geographic locations (to be optionally leveraged in identifying resource rates for costing and used by CA PPM financials) This is a required OBS, but default value can be set up if financials aren’t used.
    • Project types (to model types of work tracked in the organization)
    • Resource pool (to model where staffing should occur)
    • Other customer-specific OBSs (e.g., product line)

 

  • OBS levels: Specifies the structure depth of the OBS hierarchy. CA PPM supports up to ten levels in a hierarchy. For financial OBSs, it’s common to flatten/summarize the cost center structure to fit within CA PPM’s ten levels (e.g., cost center levels 10 and below would be reflected at level 10). An unlimited number of parallel OBS levels (width) can be created in the OBS.

 

  • OBS units: Specifies a specific node in the hierarchy structure. An OBS unit can be an ancestor or descendant in relation to other OBS units. When you reorganize, or make certain OBS units obsolete, you can move them to another branch/level without losing access to the data.

Basic OBS Model

OBS Association

An OBS must be associated with one or more objects to enable the OBS’s capabilities. For example, once you associate an OBS (such as a resource pool OBS) with a resource object, a resource manager/administrator can assign the specific resource pool OBS unit to a resource. When associating an OBS with an object, you may specify whether the association can be assigned to any OBS level/unit or to only the lowest-level unit.

Financial OBS Framework

Two pre-defined OBSs in CA PPM are mandatory when using financials—department and location. The basic framework for processing financial transactions in CA PPM includes entity, location, and department.

  • Entity represents the distinct legal company (e.g., a corporation). Each entity must be assigned to specific departments and locations by assigning the department and location OBSs to the entity in the Financials Setup section of the CA PPM Administration menu.

 

  • Locations represent the second level of the financial structure. When a location is added to CA PPM through the UI (Financials Setup section of the Administration menu), the location is automatically added to the location OBS structure. CA PPM does not permit adding units directly to the location OBS structure.

 

  • Departments represent the 3rd level of the structure and designate the units in the organizational structure of the company. The units typically represent the organization’s cost centers.   Departments must be tied to a location and may be assigned to one or more locations. When a department is added to CA PPM through the UI, it is automatically added to the department OBS. CA PPM does not permit adding units directly to the department OBS.

Customer-Specific OBS Framework

CA PPM supports the definition of other OBSs not directly associated with the organization’s financial structure. The key difference is that for financial OBSs (department and location), CA PPM manages the hierarchical structure, including addition or removal of units in the OBS as new departments and/or locations are added through the UI. The hierarchical structure setup and addition/removal of units for non-financial OBSs must be done via the CA PPM OBS Administration menu. Assignment of the OBS unit to a specific data instance (such as a specific project or resource) may be done on the application side general properties page for the relevant object. A data instance (e.g., Credit Card Processing Enhancement project) can be assigned to only one OBS unit in a given OBS type. However, it may be assigned to more than one OBS type (e.g., Credit Card Processing Enhancement project may be assigned to both the department OBS and the organizational OBS).

 

OBS Filtering for Portlets and Reports

Portlet Report ClusterAs noted earlier, OBSs are available for filtering CA PPM portlets and reports based on whether they have been associated with the data object. For example, when filtering for resources, all OBSs will be available in a “Show OBS” drop-down list at the top of the “Select OBS Unit” browse window. Once the OBS type has been selected (e.g., department OBS or resource pool OBS), the specific hierarchy and values for that OBS will be displayed for selection.

 

 

 

Share: Let's hear what other PPM practitioners are doing with OBSs!

 

Readers interested in more detail around CA PPM OBSs 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.

I have just completed attendance of the 2017 Gartner Program & Portfolio Management Summit and hope to have been your eyes and ears - directly participating or not. I had been Tweeting from @PPMWarrior and @CAPPM with the additional support of Kathy Dobson; a CA Services peer and highly regarded thought leader posting from @KDobsonPPM. She and her contributions to this blog series has taught me so much and I hope this community stays up to date with her insights. Together we brought illumination to PPM practices and had an impact as communication leaders all 3 days!

 

 

I will close this run of blogs the same way the event coordinator did; with a retrospective of top concepts and purposefully want to show organic images as to show a sense of each room. Throughout the entire seminar the "Why" was highlighted. This is the overall focus on Business Outcomes of our PPM investments and is the mapping to practice organizational value.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

For readers interested in more detail, the Gartner Agenda has been published here. I also encourage you to participate in the best-in-class CA Community site, where you have access to your 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 Twitter @PPMWarrior.

Earlier this week, Gartner released the 2017 Magic Quadrant for Project Portfolio Management, placing CA Technologies, Changepoint and Planview in the leader square. Here are five takeaways from the report.

 

1. They got it! Combining the cloud-based and self-hosted PPM reports shows Gartner finally understands today’s software-as-a-service market. One of the fastest growing cloud companies, ServiceNow, isn’t SaaS. It’s advanced managed hosting. Salesforce, Workday and Google, on the other hand, are pure SaaS players, with one multi-tenant instance for all users. However, from the customer’s perspective anything hosted off-premises is considered cloud. The rest is semantics.

 

 

2. Who says elephants can’t dance? CA Project and Portfolio Management, which has been around for a while, is considered to have the greatest ability to execute. That is, “ease of use, balanced with functional depth, and cost-effective pricing,” especially as it relates to the project management office. This staid old firm also flaunts the third-best product vision, leaving you curious about what all those startups are working on?

 

3. Where’s the beef? The report’s leader, Planview, had three peculiarly identical strengths: To target all sizes of companies, it bought a slew of solutions, which it is trying to integrate. Not very original.

 

4. Show me the money. Gartner pegs the global PPM market at $2.3 billion. That’s almost double the $1.2 billion market IDC painted in 2015. Even at a healthy 11% annual growth, according to Gartner, it’s hard to reconcile the numbers.

 

5. Welcome to the party. Open-source Project.net and cloud-based LiquidPlanner fell out of this year’s report, while Innotas disappeared into the bowel of Planview. Filling the gap are London Stock Exchange-listed Sopheon (Challenger) and Minneapolis-based KeyedIn Solutions (Niche Player). Bet on the churn to continue as project management apps modernize.

 

What's your take? Comment below or find me @alfzoo. Alf Abuhajleh works in CA PPM product marketing.

As my previous posts, I am currently attending the 2017 Gartner Program & Portfolio Management Summit and plan to be the eyes and ears for many Practitioners - directly participating or not. If you are here, let's connect - grab tea/coffee:). But even if you are not, forward any comments or questions that I can relate. I will be live Tweeting and Periscoping much of the event from @PPMWarrior and @CAPPM . Also, I want to give a big shout out to Kathy Dobson (a contributor to this blog series) for her participation in the event via @KDobsonPPM!

 

 

As expected, there have been a number of PPM themes discussed. I was most surprised about the Project to Program migration. I was happiest to hear the People side of Processes and Change. And I heard most consistently the concept of Business Outcomes being the Investment Drivers / the "Why". Below is some of the most popular content. You will probably notice that much of it is not sorted by key topic listed above, as many of the presentations crossed concepts while still being consistent to the overall conference:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

For readers interested in more detail, the Gartner Agenda has been published here. I also encourage you to participate in the best-in-class CA Community site, where you have access to your 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 Twitter @PPMWarrior.

I am currently attending the 2017 Gartner Program & Portfolio Management Summit and plan to be the eyes and ears for many Practitioners - directly participating or not. If you are here, let's connect - grab tea/coffee:). But even if you are not, forward any comments or questions that I can relate. I will be live Tweeting and Periscoping much of the event from @PPMWarrior and @CAPPM and am very proud to have already been recognized!

 

 

Below are some of the most impactful messages coming out of the conference so far:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

For readers interested in more detail, the Gartner Agenda has been published here. I also encourage you to participate in the best-in-class CA Community site, where you have access to your 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 Twitter @PPMWarrior.