Project Portfolio Management at HP

We sought to optimize the investment mix between the maintenance and support work, infrastructure projects, and innovation projects that are vital in sustaining competitive advantage and building leadership. We also require project management training for all IT professionals, and we are teaching them what our former chief information officer called "the language of business today, which is not English, French, or Spanish, but Project Management."

Prior to the implementation of the Global PMO and the corporate focus on project management, HP had the following problems common to many organizations:

• No common executive-level program status reporting

• No master plan of HP programs for customers

• Some projects with no real project plans

• Some projects managed with task lists

• Some projects with real and detailed project plans

• Different and inconsistent project methodology

• Employees not trained on project management system

• Project plans not in one database

• Actual project status unknown or unavailable

• Actual project costs very difficult to assess

In addition to resolving these problems, the purpose of the Global PMO is to help answer the following general management questions:

• What is the status of projects in my area?

• Why is this project running late?

• What happens if I reassign resources?

• How effectively are my people being used?

• What has been our performance, and where are we headed?

• Are we meeting our customer commitments?

We use return-on-investment or business case analysis on every project and have implemented a rigorous project approval process that all projects must go through. We evaluate every project along three critical dimensions: the project management effort including the plan, the financial analysis, and an architectural review to ensure it complies with our defined infrastructure and technical requirements. There are two key questions asked for every project: (1) What is the business problem we are trying to solve? (2) What is the proposed solution description?

Most projects, regardless of organization, are being done for a handful of reasons, and we have put these into general benefit categories: revenue generation, cost savings, compliance (legal or regulatory), customer satisfaction, integration (mergers), and infrastructure related.

We start with the strategy, ensuring it is aligned with the corporate business strategy. Annually each organization in the company is responsible for the development of its three-year strategic plan. Based on this plan, every six months, a tactical plan of the major programs planned for the upcoming six-month period is defined. Then tactically we try to launch the right programs from the plan of record. The governance process requires a formal approval of each individual project. The architecture then uses engineering discipline to seize elegance from complexity, and the PMO implements disciplined execution with global collaboration a state-of-the-art EPMS.

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Project Management Made Easy

Project Management Made Easy

What you need to know about… Project Management Made Easy! Project management consists of more than just a large building project and can encompass small projects as well. No matter what the size of your project, you need to have some sort of project management. How you manage your project has everything to do with its outcome.

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