How to Manage New Project Requests with BrightWork 365
BrightWork 365 is a flexible project and portfolio management solution, deployed on the Microsoft Power Platform in your Microsoft 365 cloud environment.
BrightWork 365 combines the best elements of Microsoft 365, such as Microsoft Teams, Microsoft Power BI, and Microsoft Power Automate, with our proven project management processes.
Using BrightWork 365, teams can log requests, manage projects, and control programs and portfolios in one place.
In this series of articles, I’ll explain how to use BrightWork 365 to reach your project and portfolio management goals with Microsoft 365. We’ll start with Project Request Management.
The Project Request Process in BrightWork 365
BrightWork 365 ships with four levels of request approvals. The levels relate to the number of approval stages a project request will go through before project creation.
- Project Request 0 Stage: A project is created without approval. This is ideal for organizations that don’t need a formal approval process but want to track the launch of new projects.
- Project Request 1 Stage: The request is received and approved by a receiver. At this level, the request goes through four stages: Draft, Accept, Approve, and Create Project.
- Project Request 2 Stage: The receiver accepts the request and sends it to nominated Approvers for approval and subsequent project creation is received and approved by a receiver. The request goes through the above four stages (Draft, Accept, Approve, and Create Project).
- Project Request 3 Stage: The Receiver accepts the request and sends it to the Reviewer for review. If they accept the request, it gets sent to the nominated Approvers for approval and subsequent project creation. Here, the request is worked through five stages: Draft, Accept, Review, Approve, and Create Project.
BrightWork 365 includes three templates to support different types of project requests:
- Product Update: This template is used to manage maintenance-related projects generated from support request submissions. The Product Update template is used for Project Request 0 Stage.
- Project Standard: This template follows a semi-structured waterfall process and is suitable for any team or department. The Project Standard Template is used for Project Request 1 Stage, 2 Stage, and 3 Stage.
- New Product Introduction: This template provides a structured process for developing a new product and is used for Project Request 1 Stage, 2 Stage, and 3 Stage.
The submit-review-approve process varies slightly depending on the type of request.
In this article, we’ll use the ‘New Product Introduction’ template, which follows the five-step request process.
A new project proposal is submitted for initial consideration. An email is automatically sent to the request Reciever, starting the approval process.
Accept and Review
The reviewer can:
- Accept the request and send it for approval. To do so, the reviewer simply updates the Approvers field. The Approver will receive an automated email with details about the request.
- Send the request back to Draft to get more information from the requestor.
- Reject the request.
The original requester is notified about the decision via email.
Approve and Create Project Site
The idea is either approved or rejected. If the idea is approved, the requester or approver can create a new project site using the business case.
Let’s take a look at this process in action.
How to create a new project request in BrightWork 365
Understand the status of project requests
Select ‘Requests’ in the left-hand menu to access a list of all requests. Think of this area as your ‘Project Request Management Command Centre’.
It’s a useful way to get a snapshot of all requests in one place.
Use the drop-down to sort and filter requests as needed, for example, active or rejected items.
Create and submit a draft idea
Next, click ‘+new’ in the top menu to add a new business case. Give your project a name and pick the right template for the request.
Add as much detail as possible under two tabs:
- Idea Details. Add key information such as a description and customer needs.
- Project Details. If available, add details about project execution like the assigned project manager.
When you’re ready, submit your idea for initial review.
Leverage automated notifications and reminders
At every step, the requester, the reviewer, and the approver receive automated emails.
Reviewers and approvers can act on the request directly from the email. A Power Automate workflow automatically updates the status of the request in BrightWork 365.
Requesters can easily track the status of the request and comments shared by the reviewers and approvers.
Move from idea to approved project
If the project is approved, a project site is automatically created based on the associated request template.
In the next article, you’ll see how to set up your project in BrightWork 365.
Next Steps: BrightWork 365 for Microsoft 365
BrightWork 365 brings the best elements of Microsoft 365, such as Microsoft Teams, Microsoft Power BI, SharePoint Online, Azure Active Directory, and Microsoft Power Automate, into a single collaborative hub.
BrightWork 365 allows project teams to work with their preferred Microsoft 365 apps whilst giving senior executives instant visibility and access to project data.