Automating and Simplifying Project ManagementThroughout the world of nonprofit organizations, project teams are facing increasing demands but not necessarily getting additional personnel, which often leads to resource constraints. As if the challenges of successful project execution were not enough, many teams are left to manage their operations with a series of time-consuming, manual processes and multiple, disparate tools. However, using a variety of different tools including Microsoft Word, Excel, and others often leads to information silos. For instance, if an updated report is sent by email, but one or more people are accidentally excluded from the recipient list, some will be left to continue operating without vital information. It is not difficult to imagine how this scenario could lead to errors and confusion. Having a single repository for all project-related information breaks down the barriers between data silos.

Having all project data in one place is a huge piece of the puzzle for project teams. Not only is it incredibly convenient when it comes to locating information – it also allows for faster, more accurate reporting and analysis. When combined with capacity planning, automation, and forecasting, teams can go beyond traditional project management and govern the entire portfolio of projects. This is where Project Portfolio Management (PPM) comes into play.

Boston College, a private Jesuit Catholic research university located six miles west of downtown Boston, discovered how PPM supports three key functions.

Proposal Management
PPM provides the ability to analyze proposed projects to determine their requirements and look at if/when adequate resources will be available. This paints a picture of where resources are allocated and for how long, allowing teams to build plans backed by data and recognize bottlenecks before they happen.

Ongoing Project Management
Once a project is approved with an established timeline, continued management is essential to staying on track. With PPM, there is clear visibility into individual projects and groups of projects including scheduling, resource assignment, and reporting.

Managing Non-Project Work
Having a pulse on resource commitment levels helps ensure that work unrelated to or outside side the scope of a project does not threaten milestones and timelines.

Read the full story of how Boston College automated and simplified their project management processes with Project Portfolio Management.

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