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Deploying PPM Solutions for International Packaging

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MI-GSO | PCUBED, a long time Microsoft Gold Partner, was chosen to support our global packaging client, DS Smith, as they embarked upon a journey to replace their current PPM (Programme, Project Management) tool with Microsoft Project Online. DS Smith required a complete solution deployed with simple click-through, and easy to access reporting around their investment portfolio of initiatives.

The Challenge

Our client’s IT function was looking to deploy a complete solution and to design, develop and deliver a simple, easy to access reporting so that all stakeholders could access the trusted facts around the portfolio of initiatives and projects that were being invested in. Microsoft Project Online was chosen as an enabler for a wider journey of PPM capability enhancement supporting their overall corporate business strategy.

The existing PPM tool was being decommissioned within one month of project start which meant 250+ projects contained within the tool needed to be migrated to an alternative tool as an interim solution whilst Project Online configuration activities were underway.

DS Smith were also re-developing their project framework in which both IT & M&A projects operated, so Project Online needed to be configured to align with the new process and ways of working.

Other Key Challenges included:

  • Geographical spread of end users
  • New working processes to be adopted, in different cultures with multiple languages
  • Different learning gaps and styles amongst Business Groups
  • New technology under-pinning and driving new processes

The Solution

MI-GSO | PCUBED was invited as one of Microsoft’s leading Gold Partners specialising in Enterprise Project Management solutions to review the urgent requirements to rapidly deploy a robust, scalable and fit for purpose project management information system.  Our team was chosen to deploy a PPM solution based on the Microsoft product suite coupled with the unique MI-GSO | PCUBED Reporting Tool (DeliveryHub). 

In the first phase, we established high level user and business requirements, confirmed scope/functionality of the required solution and created an environment for successful adoption of the solution. During the second phase,  our team held a series of detailed Sprint sessions to fully define the required configuration of the tool including reports and detailed gateway review workflow for IT projects as well as M&A projects.

By utilising the MI-GSO | PCUBED Reporting Solution the client was able to automatically generate the key management reports in a fraction of the time required by the previous tool. Our Reporting Solution has been built to allow access to Project Online data (with the option to interface with additional external facing data sets) via a single source to be output into practically any possible format. 

The Result 

Prior to the deployment of Project Online, IT PMOs and Project Managers manually developed the necessary project management reports which wasted time and effort. After the deployment the time now spent across the hundreds (and soon to be thousands) of projects managed and tracked in the solution has been reduced to less than 30 minutes per reporting cycle. This is a substantial saving of time, but more importantly allows project managers to increase their time on the actual activity of managing project delivery. 

MI-GSO | PCUBED  supported the delivery of the solution by utilising a very small team of technology and business experts over the life cycle of deployment. Working directly with only three of our experts provided continuity, allowing DS Smith to focus their attention and work with us to develop a good working relationship. The collaborative approach used by both  MI-GSO | PCUBED  and DS Smith ensured this large deployment was delivered in record time.

Other benefits included: 

  1. Common approach to Processes & Standards 
  2. Visibility of accurate and relevant data 
  3. Improved decision making 
  4. Improved focus maximizing the business value of all projects  

In May 2017, following the success of the Project Online deployment to IT in March, other departments saw the benefit and DS Smith engaged our Solutions Team to roll out Project Online to the Procurement department.  This project included two new reports, a gateway review workflow and additional configuration to tailor the solution to their needs.  

DS Smith further engaged our company to further enhance the capability for IT and Procurement departments by implementing Programme Management Functionality with Project Online.  Both of the follow on projects were a result of the success of the first implementation to IT.


For further information on this article and MI-GSO | PCUBED



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