While CIOs have long understood the importance of project and portfolio management (PPM), they struggle with whether to embrace Microsoft Project and SharePoint project management tools, go with lesser-known lighter solutions or Software as a Service (SaaS) options, or ditch the formal plan altogether and create a hybridized PPM solution without going through the formal PMO process.
In this briefing, you'll find resources to help you get started with SharePoint 2010 installations or the inspiration for adopting best practices of PPM without giving up the autonomy and creativity that an open structure offers. You'll also find what not to do when embracing a PPM position and how to avoid pitfalls associated with bad project management.
This guide is part of SearchCIO-Midmarket.com's Midmarket CIO Briefings series, which is designed to give IT leaders strategic management and decision-making advice on timely topics. For a complete list of topics covered to date, visit the
- Poor utilization gives PPM a bad name
- Making do without a PMO
- SharePoint project management success stories
- More resources
| Poor utilization
gives PPM a bad name
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Some industry pundits have declared PPM to be an antiquated technology. Most CIOs, however, would disagree and assure that PPM is still a vital tool for managing teams and initiatives, especially as shrinking staffs try to do more with less money.
Our featured expert Jonathan Hassell looks at the importance of PPM as a governance strategy rather than an IT initiative, emphasizing the need for interpreting PPM tool results by the right individuals. The industry must also consider where it is on the scale of operational maturity and execution before understanding how to define "success" of a given project.
PPM software is often touted as a magic bullet, but PPM can position a team for success. Similarly, when misused, SharePoint project management tools alone will not save a poorly managed team from crashing and burning.
Learn more in "Your PPM solution is no longer relevant? Maybe you’re doing it wrong." Also:
with a PPM solution, IT project and portfolio challenges remain
Companies often adopt PPM to solve their woes but still struggle with many of the tenets of agile management and ensuring ROI without dedicating new resources to the project. Sometimes ROI isn't the right measurement, as some companies have learned.
PPM software, not just MS Project, finds place in midmarket
Microsoft Project dominates among project and portfolio management options at midsized firms, but some are adopting higher-end PPM software. Learn why.
| Making do without a
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While adopting PPM is an ideal scenario for many CIOs, sometimes the IT shop just isn't ready for that level of adaption and commitment. Our resident midmarket CIO, Scott Lowe, has taken some best practices from the world of PPM and helped his team become more tactical without engaging a coordinated PMO .
By adopting improved business justification measures before beginning a project, Lowe's organization has streamlined project implementation. Additionally, the CIO engages with various leaders from other areas of the college as he walks through resource assignment, portfolio management review and eliminating project roadblocks.
Learn more in "IT portfolio management on the cheap: Manage projects without a PMO." Also:
portfolio management: Strategy matters more than software, CIOs say
While most larger companies adopt PPM discipline, only a third actually use PPM software, citing strategy over tools as the biggest marker for success.
project management software options for when Excel isn't enough
Midmarket organizations outgrowing Excel may still need simple project management software. Luckily, there are a number of low-cost, straightforward options available.
project management success stories
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After going through the arduous task of choosing your PPM solution, the next conundrum is where to get started with SharePoint. Our PPM experts, Danielle Ruest, Nelson Ruest and Marie-Andree Furlong, walk you through an ideal SharePoint adoption. Start with identifying your department's pain points by talking with users and subject-matter experts to understand exactly what you'll need SharePoint to accomplish for your business. This exercise will underline the requirements for your project and, more importantly, give you a bull’s-eye to shoot for when communicating the success of your SharePoint adoption back to the business.
The next step for SharePoint installation involves a comprehensive inventory of all document and information assets that will be covered by the SharePoint implementation. Our experts give tips for this process, including hints of where important data might be hiding in plain sight. Finally, we outline important considerations for designing the SharePoint homepage that your users will see when they access this management system. Your primary goal is to create a positive user experience to assure company-wide adoption and usage.
Learn more in "Get started with SharePoint tips for project and portfolio management." Also:
project management can't keep pace with uncertain economy
CIOs have stepped away from the usual PPM tools to adopt lighter SaaS options, such as Basecamp, LiquidPlanner and a redesigned, more intuitive Microsoft Project.
SharePoint implementation tips, training and more
Whether you're using SharePoint currently or want to dip a toe into SharePoint 2010, we've got you covered with a jumping-off point for getting the most out of SharePoint.
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- Resource Center: IT project and portfolio management for the midmarket (SearchCIO-Midmarket.com)
- Resource Center: SharePoint and Web 2.0 technology for the midmarket (SearchCIO-Midmarket)
- Website: SearchContentManagement.com
This was first published in June 2011