PPM Tips
Expert Tips To Accelerate Your PPM Tool Implementation Time
November 18, 2020

“We need a tool!” 

“We need a system that will make sense of this for us” 

“We need help figuring this out” 

“How do we track this?” 

The right PPM tool can help address all these statements and more but, the question then becomes, how do you go about setting it up correctly for your organization?  

Getting Prepared for Your New PPM Tool 

Kolme Group has some expert tips and questions for your consideration to prepare for your PPM implementation. We answer the “how to prepare” question so you can get your organization ready for project management tool implementation.

Outline Your Main Goals for Implementation

  • What gaps or pain points do you have now that you’d like to address?
  • Decide on the expected outputs.  What do you want from a PPM tool?  Even more importantly, what do you need from a tool? 
  • What will a successful implementation look like? Set these goals and consult them to ensure that you stay on track and aligned with the original vision. 

Create a List of Criteria to Consider & Prioritize for your Implementation

  • This prioritized list of Must Haves and Nice to Have will help drive the implementation phases. 
  • Will project initiation & prioritization/selection be part of the implementation?  How will priority be determined?  How will budget, scope, and capacity/resource utilization be evaluated?  What metrics are required to guide those decisions?  Are there approval steps and permissions that I need to consider?  What are the KPIs to be tracked?  Most PPM systems include reporting capabilities so it’s important to ensure that the right data points are part of the inputs so that they can be measured and reported on. 
  • Do I want my PPM software to be cloud-based or locally hosted?  There are management considerations to make here. 
  • How many users will be using the platform?  Will they be internal employees only or external clients or both? 
  • Do I care about how the user interface looks?   
  • Cost of the PPM tool as well as any licensing, customization, or integration costs 
  • Consider ongoing management, updates, and changes to the platform post-implementation.  Will this require professional service hours or can this be managed internally? 
  • Envision the training needs of your teams.  Factor this into the phases.
  • Start small and work in phases.  A Big Bang approach is seldom suggested and will take much longer to roll out.  The change impact on the organization will be greater as will the training effort and adoption curve.  Implementing and releasing smaller pieces of the overall solution as part of a phased approach is usually more effective and more positively received.  This approach will also allow the implementation team to gather feedback and learnings and apply them to future phases as we advance as well as make adjustments to the criteria or priority, if necessary 

Gather Processes

Gather Business Process for PPM Tool Implementation

Gather Business Process for PPM Tool Implementation

  • Know your current processes.  Are the processes documented or formalized?   
  • Pull together the current processes, understanding who is using them as well as the inputs and outputs of each of them.   
  • Are they being followed today?  Understanding existing processes or establishing new ones will help guide the implementation.  Current, lean processes are an important input of a successful workflow within the PPM.  It’s a good use of time to see if they are as efficient as they can be. 

Gather User Input and Feedback

  • The involvement of user champions should be leveraged to represent their voice when implementing a PPM.  Simplestraightforward steps, views, and even labels make a big difference to the end user and the adoption of a new system.

Create A List Of Your Integration Needs

  • Is there information in other systems that you’d like to include?  Is the new platform replacing legacy tools?  If so, review and decide on what data, if any, will be migrated over.  It’s important to ensure that any data that will be migrated is accurate and robust – you’ve heard the term garbage in, garbage out – either take the time to cleanse the old data or leave it out altogether.  Integration of data will also help to minimize the need for users to consult multiple systems to complete steps in a process.   
  • Single source of truth.  Many organizations have different versions of the same information in multiple places which can lead to duplicative efforts and confusion.  Integration of this data will help to leverage the required information while maintaining a single source of truth. 

Create Your Change Management Plan

Change Management PPM Tool Implementation

Change Management PPM Tool Implementation

  • This is also referred to as the people side of change.  The importance of change management and planning it into your implementation plan cannot be underestimated.   
  • Pull together a team of user champions to provide input and feedback.  Project champions will facilitate user views, needs, and feedback throughout the implementation.    
  • These champions will be part of the communication plans, internal marketing campaign, and even training of the new system.  This will positively affect user adoption and support of the platform 
  • Learn more about Change Management from Prosci
  • Learn how Kolme Group can help support your business with a change here

At Kolme Group we care and want to help you get the best out of your PPM Tool. Contact Us for a Free, 30-minute consultancy to discuss your PPM Tool implementation needs and https://kolmegroup.com/contact-us/best steps forward.

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