Why EA Portfolio Manager is a game changer for Project Managers
Early, high quality, critical information
All project managers know that the three classical dimensions of project management – time, cost and quality – are all subject to risk.
And one of the biggest risks when working in a large complex organization with lots going on all the time, is that individual projects interfere with, delay, or compromise what other projects are doing.
Often those risks don’t become visible until late on in the project lifecycle – at which point they are issues to be addressed. Which can lead a project needing to do extra, unplanned work. Either changing the scope of the project, or redesigning the solution. In both cases, leading to delays and/or extra costs.
Portfolio Manager can’t eliminate all your risks (sorry!) but it will give your EA modelers early awareness of:
- Which other projects are working in the same parts of the business?
- Are their changes likely to impact me?
- Do I need to wait for them to finish before my project can go live?
- Who do I need to talk to to get more information?
EA modelers using Portfolio Manager will be able to provide this information to their project managers as soon as the modeling starts and at any point thereafter.
The Project Dependency diagram
The simplest, and yet the most powerful (IMHO) EA diagram that Portfolio Manager creates.
This shows which projects are connected to yours – whether they have a co-dependency (we are both thinking about making changes to the same elements of the model), or a direct dependency (my project requires your project to deliver before it can complete. Or vice versa.)
The modeller can easily find exactly which ‘things’ in EA are leading to those dependencies, and then you, or they, can start the conversation with your opposite numbers.
Of course when those conversations happen, it could be that you don’t just avoid bad things happening (rework, delays, redesign). It could be that synergies are discovered, or better solutions uncovered, that benefit both projects.
This level of visibility, at ALL stages of the project, means you should avoid being ‘ambushed’ at the end of the project with previously unrecognised problems. Which means happy stakeholders.
Waterfall? Agile? Hybrid?
Portfolio Manager has been designed to be deliberately ‘light touch’, maximising the value for project teams and modelers whilst minimising the impact on your project lifecycle and governance processes. For more thoughts on how this could work with different approaches, see Project Lifecycles and Portfolio Manager