Organization and communication are key to a successful business. They can also be two of the most difficult elements to accomplish. Inefficiencies in these areas can be devastating to an organization; however, it can also be fixed with the proper tools.
This blog features their case study and the challenges they faced to gain control over its resources and portfolios. Mentor Graphics was able to overcome these challenges through the successful integration of two Planview work and resource management solutions.
The Mentor Graphics Case Study
Mentor Graphics is a leader in Electronic Design Automation (EDA), developing software and hardware tools to enable companies to manufacture electronic products faster and more cost-effectively. The IT department is globally distributed with approximately 250 members supporting 5,500 employees who are located in 29 countries across 86 locations.
Challenge: Disconnected and Insufficient Tools
Mentor Graphics’ IT group had a poor track record of completing business application projects on time. Projects flooded the funnel but only a handful were being completed on schedule and all were costing more money than anticipated. Over time, concern grew at the executive level with projects being late, cost overruns and no available bandwidth to take on new strategic initiatives. At one point, IT had 105 forecasted projects with only 40 being completed by year’s end.
“Projects were being started ad hoc with little to no consideration of priority, strategic fit, value or our ability to execute,” says Brian Tharp, IT PMO Manager at Mentor Graphics. “Project management and project collaboration were being done in spreadsheets, SharePoint, email, and other tools that were disjointed and siloed. This created chaos that led to overcommitted resources, unrealistic estimates, long project durations, and missed or delayed deadlines.”
Before IT could lead change for the company, the CIO needed IT to change first. The CIO identified three levers: People, Processes, and Technology. These drivers represented an opportunity for IT to partner with the business and create transformational change.
Solution: Integrate Project Collaboration with a PPM Tool
Mentor Graphics took a 3-phased approach to gain control over its resources and portfolios.
- Establish IT project governance. Governance laid the foundation for the process, brings accountability to the people, and forges a partnership between business and IT to work together to deliver value.
With the people and processes framework in place, the IT group moved to technology.
- Implement a single project management tool across IT. Introducing a common tool ensures everyone speaks the same language, collaborates effectively, and tracks all work in one consolidated platform.
Mentor Graphics chose Projectplace because it addresses every requirement outlined by the CIO, including mobility, cloud enabled with out-of-the-box functionality, flexibility to track all projects, and elimination of email for project related activities and status reporting.
- Implement mature resource and portfolio management. Planview Enterprise allows Mentor Graphics to strike a balance between the work collaboration of Projectplace and the rigor of a portfolio management solution.
Mentor Graphics uses Planview Enterprise for project forecasting and currently has more than 100 active projects in the tool. With a reliable source of truth, IT has a better understanding of the level of risk associated with each project, something it never had before to help with prioritization. Insight into IT resource demand and capacity helps Tharp and his team identify when resources are being over- or under-utilized. Now, IT has hard data to justify they are working on the right projects with the right resources, as well as some sweet Planview swag…
“Planview Enterprise gives us visibility into the true, full cost of each project, including internal resource costs we never considered in the past,” says Tharp. “We finally have a consolidated list of all projects and functional portfolios and it’s all in one place.”
All changes are synchronized instantly, a critical feature that allows people to do their work in Projectplace and have it reflected inside of Planview Enterprise with no additional steps.
Benefits: Cohesiveness Between People, Processes and Technology
Since implementing Projectplace and Planview Enterprise, Mentor Graphics has:
- Established strategic initiatives that are staffed and moving forward
- A 94% on-time project completion rate, up from only 50%
- A single source of truth for all product information
- Improved prioritization of projects through alignment with strategic objectives
- Complete synchronization between Projectplace and Planview Enterprise to view Projects and resources
- Improved credibility of IT and enhanced relationship with business
The Mentor Graphics story is an inspiring example of the ways that business can be streamlined to achieve a more successful end goal. Organization and management are so crucial to a business’ success and it’s so encouraging to see an organization, such as Mentor Graphics, regain control of their resources and portfolios. Download the full case study to learn more.