Supporting Houston with Project Management Services

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(Houston, TX) – MI-GSO | PCUBED is a project management company supporting the greater Houston area and beyond. With more than 30 offices around the globe, we are the world’s leading consultancy dedicated to project, program, portfolio, and change management.

Our Houston office was founded in 2015 and grew out of the energy industry. We began supporting companies local to Houston, but are growing rapidly to neighboring cities to support new clients’ growth and initiatives. Since M|P’s national founding in 1994, we have expanded to help thousands of clients across the Automotive, Aerospace & Defense, Healthcare, Life Sciences, Transportation, Financial Services, and Public Sectors as they have tackled some of their most complex initiatives. 

Haven’t heard of us just yet? We are sometimes referred to as a best-kept secret in project management. However, looking at lagging overall project delivery track records, that is something we wish to change. Our goal is to help organizations successfully deliver their projects.

So, what makes us unique? To answer that, we caught up with several members of our team to discuss.

Isabel Wallace

Business Unit Manager & Hub Lead

“It’s exciting to hear from clients about how our team is helping to recover projects by resolving issues quickly and keeping teams focused. It’s also extremely encouraging to know our team is accomplishing more than the minimum requirements outlined for a project; they are most often recognized for going above and beyond – doing what needs to be done, instead of simply what is expected.”

Some key challenges that we address include:

  • implementing and enhancing the utilization of project management tools and processes
  • providing change management support to enable transitions from prior to new sustainable ways of working
  • incorporating agile ways of working which are fit for their organization’s needs

“So often today we see large-scale projects at risk of drastically missing deadlines. That was the case for our client, an Oil and Gas major, that found themselves a year into a pipeline scheduling digital transformation project that was not on track to meet its original deadline. M|P was brought on board to provide Project Management as a Service (PMaaS) support and to help manage the recovery of the pipeline scheduling solution. 

In less than three months, our team worked with key stakeholders to correctly define the problem, complete a risk assessment, perform a financial review, and identify and schedule clear and achievable goals. Then, we set up twice-weekly workshops focused on getting the project back on track as well as a weekly re-prioritization workshop. This enabled the team to stay focused on the finish line while also factoring in any rework required in order to deliver on time.

With equal parts teamwork and strong project management practices, the team was able to overcome hurdle after hurdle, in the midst of the COVID-19 lockdown, to meet the go-live date as originally planned. The client now has a standard approach to scheduling, utilizing the tool to visualize necessary changes. They also have the ability to manage forecasting volumes, manage linefill, and daily system inventory.”

“The second key challenge we help our clients address is with Change Management solutions – a growing service of ours. Clients are struggling with minimizing risk to efficient adoption while maximizing benefits. 

Our client was preparing their business for the implementation of an Oracle Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) software and its associated processes. M|P designed and deployed a Change Management approach around a series of change cycles. Packaging up a set of change management interventions and linking those activities to the program Go Live dates allowed the team to improve the client’s Project Management and Change Management maturity.

As a result, all follow-on Go Lives were able to be delivered on time and deemed a success. The successful Go Live and post-Go Live activities received recognition at the highest level of the organization. No negative feedback from the divisions ensured that management perception remained positive on the launches.”

“The third key area we help our clients with is transitioning to more agile ways of working. Our client in the energy sector found that their teams struggled with understanding and adopting agile practices. During their initial attempt at an agile transition, they struggled with communication, guidance, visibility, and collaboration. Ultimately, siloed teams felt the scope of their responsibilities was unclear. 

M|P was brought in to assess the challenges that each team was facing and to redefine and clarify the scope of those teams. Our consultants were able to identify areas causing delays and frustration, address these issues with key stakeholders, and implement the changes across the PMO team. 

The resulting project is in control, the sprints or increments are successful, and the management team has the visibility now to drive the project where it needs to go.”

For help with Project Management Services:

Olivia Laureau Cherif

Business Unit Manager

“At M|P, our team recognizes the value that project management expertise provides to our clients. We understand that by investing in our team, in our community, in advancing technology, and in the success of our clients, we are ensuring the continued successful delivery of future projects. 

With a strong emphasis on teamwork, we know that we cannot do that alone. That’s why we rely on an expansive partner network to help us ensure success. We are a long-time partner of the Project Management Institute. We recently sponsored the PMI Houston Conference & Expo. This conference focused on the changes that have taken place and are sure to continue in how we work, where we work, and the things we work on. 

This topic brought our focus toward soft skills in the workplace, something we are emphasizing during our interviews with new hires and looking to cultivate for our team members. This event was also a great opportunity for us to give back to our community; we provided gift cards for raffle winners to Houston Restaurant Weeks, in which proceeds are donated to local food banks. 

With M|P’s global headquarters in France, we also partner with the French American Chamber of Commerce (FACC), a non-profit organization that acts as a facilitator to develop business connections with key industry players for its members and is dedicated to furthering business opportunities between Texas and France. Leveraging our project management expertise in this community allows us to connect with members and share experiences, and to understand and enable greater business success.”

“Our lengthiest partnership though has actually been with Microsoft. We are a Microsoft Gold Partner, with in-house PPM Solutions expertise, helping to make Office 365, Teams, and Microsoft Project implementations more successful.”

“We work with our partners like Planisware to ensure that our team is certified, our clients can make the best use of the features available, and that we can use stored project data to keep projects on track.

Finally, just last month we announced our investment and partnership in a start-up Meeting Assistant technology company Sembly AI. We recently integrated Sembly AI’s software into one of our client organizations. The client found that a considerable amount of time was being devoted to capturing notes, issues, actions, and decisions during meetings, and additional time was dedicated to summarizing the notes and distributing the information to stakeholders. 

To better utilize their employee’s time and resources, the team implemented Sembly AI, a technical solution that records, transcribes, and generates smart meeting summaries across platforms offering significant benefit to project teams. 

Our team found that this solution led to a 17% increase in meeting efficiency due to a reduction in minute-taking and detail-capturing by the employees. A 50% drop occurred in the number of meeting attendees without a loss of knowledge-sharing or efficiency; only relevant attendees are now required as accurate transcripts and summaries are being produced through automation. And, the transcripts were found to be 98% accurate and reduced the time needed for editing and reviewing meeting minutes.”

“This not only shows how M|P is able to cater solutions to specific client needs, but also how much the Project Management field is innovating and advancing right now.”

Shawanna Deaver

Talent Acquisition Partner

“To meet the needs of our expanding staff, as well as to modernize the office, we moved to a newly renovated office space in downtown Houston. During the search for a new office, we focused on spaces that had prominent collaborative areas and co-working locations. This allows our staff the flexibility to comfortably transition between remote, in-office, and client-site work.“

“I feel that in the past year, this space has become a home for our M|P team. While many of our consultants are on client sites, this central and communal space affords us the opportunity to bring the team together more often. Now more than ever the team can gather, collaborate, catch up, and meet new team members. 

This space also warmly welcomes newcomers as they learn who we are and what we do, so they feel confident when they leave the nest for a client site; it also gives them a place to come back to when they need other things like connection, collaboration, and celebration. 

With an emphasis on connection, our office frequently hosts events to bring the team together. We’ve recently hosted multiple baby showers for our team members, and hosted a Women’s History Month event. In March of 2022, our team visited the Frida Khalo Immersive Experience and went to a team dinner at a women-owned restaurant afterward to spend time outside of the office to meaningfully connect.

Our organization also recognizes the importance of community and having a giving spirit. That’s why we recently made a donation in support of a client-sponsored United Way Campaign and sponsored two of our employees as they ran marathons in support of charity organizations of their choice.”

“Our location in downtown Houston prepares us to deploy consultants to areas around Houston,  with a large network of clients even in suburban areas. Houston continues to grow and we know that we are prepared to deploy the PM services needed. 

Ultimately, I’m so impressed with our team’s dedication to excellence. Whether that be our consultants in their effortless shift to a hybrid work schedule while continuing to offer excellence in service to our clients; or to our internal team for continuing to invest in our people, our practices and methodology, our technology, and our infrastructure. It’s people like this that have helped us become a trusted partner to leading companies. It’s what keeps me excited about our future.” 

Whether your business is looking to start new projects, recover past projects, or simply wants a dedicated partner to help achieve your goals, MI-GSO | PCUBED can provide the resources, experienced team members, and unparalleled support to help you deliver organized, efficient, and successful projects. Contact us to learn more.

Interview with:

Isabel Wallace
Business Unit Manager & Hub Lead

Olivia Laureau Cherif
Business Unit Manager

Shawanna Deaver
Talent Acquisition Partner

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