How M|P’s Digital Lab is the Future of PMO
The Digital Lab was created by MI-GSO | PCUBED in early 2019 with a clear vision: Digital as the foundation for the PMO of the future.
Our mission is to create innovative solutions for our company and for the projects of our customers by using existing project environments. Our goal is to provide added value.
We recently sat down with our Digital Lab Manager, Gaël Gueguen, to learn a little more about digital’s bright future.
Birth of the Digital Lab, and Successes & Failures
M|P: Gaël, you participated in the birth of the Digital Lab over a year and a half ago. What were the triggers for the creation of this service?
GG: We created the Digital Lab to meet the growing need for data exploitation within our customer engagements. In the last few years, the volume of information available has skyrocketed.
This presented both a technical and organizational challenge, but also an opportunity to manage our projects more efficiently.
The Digital Lab was founded around three distinct axes: The first was to provide operational digital support to both our customers and our consultants. Next comes support for digital projects which are to be carried out in-house. And finally, the third axis is around innovation – the way in which we propose new tools and uses based on the most recent technologies.
M|P: What were your first actions, successes, failures?
GG: We started by offering counselling sessions with our MI-GSO | PCUBED PMO teams to help them to understand how to get the most out of their data. As we began to better understand the different ecosystems of our customers, we were then able to propose realistic solutions adapted to their needs.
As such, we were able to achieve significant productivity gains, not only for our PMO but also for our clients’ project teams.
Many times you are limited by a client’s internal software constraints. We strive to put in place the most appropriate solutions taking into account their specific applications and ecosystems.
M|P: It already seems so long ago. The team has grown as your initiatives have diversified. What does the Digital Lab bring on a daily basis to MI-GSO | PCUBED and its customers?
GG: The Digital Lab teams are now mobilized across multiple sectors supporting different clients and varied consulting engagements in a more operational way.
When we engage, we intervene to redesign their data models and associated tools to net productivity gains. Essentially our solutions free up time while allowing for better analysis through enhanced data processing.
In addition, we have also strengthened our involvement in internal digital projects, ranging from consulting to solution development.
Visions vs. Activities of the Digital Lab
M|P: Many companies rely on internal Digital Labs now. How are the vision and activities of our Digital Lab different?
GG: For me, it’s the fact that we have leveraged our strong understanding of our customer environments and how their users need to be able to use the data.
This allows us to provide pragmatic and consistent solutions, avoiding the implementation of too technically advanced solutions that are separated from the real operational needs of the customer. Digital maturity for us presents itself at the service of the PMO and therefore of the customer.
M|P: Can you give us an example of a solution that you’ve created?
GG: I’d love to. For one of our clients, we overhauled the way that data was managed. We put in place processes and tools to both collect and process their production data.
This allowed us to largely automate reporting and set up an interactive dashboard providing a 360° view of the entire operation. We were able to reduce the time it took to produce the daily report from 6 hours to a less than 5 minutes!
M|P: Working in the Digital Lab sounds cool, albeit challenging. How would you describe your job?
GG: Indeed it is an exciting place to work! We rely on understanding how to use the latest technologies in order to effectively and efficiently respond to the problems posed to us. We learn more and more each day – and each step is a small victory!
M|P: How do you see the evolution of the Digital Lab over the next two years?
GG: Over the next two years, we will focus primarily on exploiting data through artificial intelligence technology. We believe in the potential of leveraging these algorithms in customer environments to drive additional value.
M|P: In closing, do you have any lessons worth sharing?
GG: Of course! Just recently, we were implementing a relatively complex solution. We were constantly receiving the same error message – which was annoying. After more than two hours of investigation, we finally realized that it was just a misplaced character in our code. It just goes to show that a complex solution can be spoiled by the tiniest little thing, so it’s best to keep things as simple as possible.
Thank you for taking the time to speak with us, Gaël! We wish you nothing but success in your continued journey with the Digital Lab.
Want to learn more about automated dashboards? Listen to our Introduction to Project Dashboards podcast or check out our case study on Developing Automated Cross Program Dashboards.
Digital Lab Manager
@ MI-GSO | PCUBED France