One of the most common challenges faced by senior executives is a lack of visibility into ongoing and proposed projects.
When this happens, projects are in trouble beyond rescue before anyone notices; approved projects may not be aligned with the strategic objectives, and good resources can be way under-or over-allocated.
It doesn’t have to be that way!
Here are three portfolio reporting scenarios that will give your senior executives visibility into the project pipeline, project statuses, and resource allocation on SharePoint On-Premises.
3 Portfolio Reporting Scenarios Your Senior Executives Will Love
1. Project request management for selecting the right projects
The idea of managing project requests seems like it should be simple. Is the project going to provide value? Yes? Approved!
But, it’s not that easy.
In many organizations, the process for deciding which projects get approved or dropped is informal and inconsistent. Just because someone has an idea for a project does not mean it is the right project for your organization!
Having the ability to capture and log project requests is the critical first step. How can you rank and prioritize new projects if you don’t even know what they are?
Senior executives need to be able to easily rank, assess, and report on proposed projects. This will enable a consistent and objective project selection process that ensures are approved projects are aligned with organizational goals.
This process is built right into the Project Request Manager template in BrightWork.
In this template, all team members can log a request for a new project. Those requests are then queued up and sent to the appropriate approver (typically a senior executive) for sign-off.
Reviewers can jump into the list of requests, rank using drag and drop, and approve the projects that will deliver the highest return on investment.
The ability to report across all project requests in one system ensures that all approved projects align with the organizations’ strategic deliverables.
The Project Request Manager Template also includes a Resource Allocation List to help project managers estimate resources during planning.
The requester can easily add resources and anticipated hours to a new request.
Reviewers can compare the request hours against other requests and current projects to gauge resource availability more fully.
2. Real-time portfolio dashboards for visibility across all projects
Project updates that senior executives receive can often vary in quality, timeliness, and accuracy. When they don’t have visibility into the health of projects, issues and problems are not known until it’s too late!
No one likes bad news, especially bad news that is late!
BrightWork provides a series of portfolio dashboards in SharePoint with metrics and traffic light indicators, delivering instant visibility across all the projects in an organization.
The beauty of using BrightWork and a hierarchical project structure in SharePoint is that the portfolio dashboards roll up information from all the projects below.
Project managers create a status report at the project level and that update percolates up to the portfolio dashboard used by senior executives.
They no longer have to go chasing updates. It’s all there on the portfolio dashboard in real-time. The dashboards can be built with visually striking charts, KPIs, and scorecards that quickly paint the project picture.
With BrightWork, the reports can even be emailed on request or on a schedule. For example, senior executives may like to receive an email every Friday morning with an update on that weeks’ progress.
Of course, they can check the Project Office site at any time for an update and see the information in real-time as well.
This kind of real-time visibility allows senior executives to easily identify projects in trouble, and drill down into detail specific projects that require attention. All the better to help out on a project before it’s too late!
BrightWork extends portfolio reporting on SharePoint even further with Power BI dashboards.
The BrightWork Power BI pack for SharePoint is a pre-built report with six dashboards for project and portfolio managers.
The BrightWork Power BI pack includes:
- Portfolio dashboards with a roll-up summary of all project sites. The dashboard offers four filtering options: “Project Status,” “By Project Manager,” “By Project type,” “By Department,” and “By Priority.
- Portfolio timeline, a Gantt view of all project sites. Drill down by year, quarter, month, week, and days.
- Project and Task Timeline, a Gantt view of projects and tasks. Filter the data by project name, project type, project manager, and task owner.
- Work Reports allow project managers to check the status of tasks, risks, issues, and goals.
- The Status Report Dashboard includes weekly Status updates, overall status summary, highlights, lowlights, and next steps.
- The Issue Report helps project managers to get further information on issues, including task-owner.
3. High visibility resource management for optimal resource allocation
I think it would be rare for a person to be working on only one project.
It is more likely that project team members are assigned lots of different projects and initiatives at the same time… and they have to do their day job!
Team members with special expertise or scarce skills will always be in high demand. Without the appropriate visibility into how resources are allocated across projects, it is difficult to ensure that the right resources are working on the right projects at the right time.
BrightWork ships with a simple resource report in SharePoint that shows a breakdown of each team members’ workload. Visual indicators will light up when a particular resource, team, or department has more work assigned than they are able to deliver.
Even a simple resource report like this one allows executives to see exactly how much work each team member is assigned. When they see that a particular team member has too much on their plate, they can help divert additional resources to avoid bottlenecks and keep all projects on track.
With these three reporting capabilities enabled, senior executives no longer need to spend time seeking and compiling the information. Instead, they can focus on making more informed decisions, ultimately leading to better business outcomes.
Editor’s Note: This post was originally published in April 2015 and has been updated for freshness, accuracy, and comprehensiveness.