Camden National Bank formed their Office of Project Management (OPM) in 2014 after experiencing a period of exponential company-wide growth. The aim was to get a better handle on the strategic portfolio of projects that the company was initiating. Prior to 2014, projects were managed independently along the different business lines; IT, Operations, Retail and Commercial. The level of documentation varied depending on who was managing a project and there were different formats and applications used; Microsoft Project, Microsoft Excel, SharePoint Sites, to name a few. The idea of an enterprise wide Collaborative Project Management (CPM) tool had been suggested multiple times over the years but it was only after the OPM was formed that the company felt it had sufficient resources to successfully roll it out.
Camden National Bank had already been using SharePoint Sites but the sites weren’t consistent. After reviewing and researching multiple options, BrightWork was recommended to the executive team as the tool that would best fit this need for the standardisation of project sites, as well as the content and structures around them.
“We Realised Just How Powerful BrightWork & SharePoint Could Be”
Deployment of the BrightWork collaborative project management tool began in late 2014, with the OPM initially using it for some small projects that were kicking off around that time. These projects were from within the IT and Operations lines and involved using slightly tailored out of the box templates. Four months later, in spring of 2015, Camden National Bank announced it was acquiring another community bank – The Bank of Maine. That integration project was managed entirely on BrightWork and the functionality really got tested.
Ray Jean was part of the acquired bank and his first experience with BrightWork was using it during the integration. As with any acquisition there were a lot of hurdles to overcome, including an issue of having to go through remote desktop servers to access the systems Camden National Bank had in place, such as BrightWork. This initially caused frustration on the side of The Bank of Maine employees and Ray even admits he “spent the first month looking for and demoing alternative solutions to BrightWork”. Later, after delving into the BrightWork solution further, Ray began to work with Tim Pratt to modify the standard template and some of the portfolio views for the senior executives so that it showed exactly what they wanted to see and no more. The OPM began to realise just how powerful BrightWork and SharePoint could be but also how this power and functionality could be daunting to users when they are all “turned on at once.” Realising this helped the OPM to start to tackle user adoption and instead foster enthusiasm for the tool.
Full User Adoption Has Led to a Need for Full Visibility.
Following the successful acquisition and integration project of 2015, the OPM expanded and today it comprises of four people, including Ray Jean and Tim Pratt. This expansion allowed the office to manage the growing project management needs of the business. Camden National Bank has upgraded from 100 to 150 BrightWork licenses. There is full user adoption amongst the executive team and this team now wants complete, real-time visibility on all projects across all business lines; IT, Operations, Retail & Commercial. The OPM are now focused on delivering a full suite of portfolio views to provide this transparency. In order to have the relevant information roll up to these portfolios, each project manager is now required to fill out a bi-weekly status report within BrightWork on each of their projects. In these reports they load their tasks, check off those that are completed or assigned and log any issues. Version control is therefore becoming better and they have eliminated more than 60% of all the extra documentation processes that were taking place outside of BrightWork, with the aim of eliminating 100%.
Bringing BrightWork Full Cycle
Camden National Bank and the OPM are by no means finished with making BrightWork more customised to their needs and are still learning and maturing their Collaborative Project Management process. There are numerous goals and projects on the cards for the future. One such goal is to bring BrightWork full cycle so that project requests and initiations go through the tool. Another aim is to enhance team communications, for example automatic emails when a task is assigned. The OPM are gradually fostering enthusiasm for the Collaborative Project Management process and are increasingly receiving requests for access to BrightWork from executives and teams that it has not yet been rolled out to.
Camden National Bank
Camden National Bank is a full-service community bank that offers state-of-the-art online and mobile banking through a network of 63 banking centres and 85 ATMs in Maine, as well as lending offices in Massachusetts and New Hampshire. With more than 650 employees, and over $3.9 billion in assets, it is no surprise that Camden National Bank is the largest bank in the state of Maine and the largest publicly traded bank in Northern New England.
“The BrightWork Customer Success and Support teams have been phenomenal. We purchased support hours when we initially started and we have gotten an extreme amount of value from them. We are not just told what to do but we are shown and trained so we can do it for ourselves. The monthly free training is where we start a lot of our development. We attend, get ideas, build and break it in our sandbox environment and then eventually come out with an end solution”.
Ray Jean & Tim Pratt, Office of Project Management