Business Case Builder: How to Build a PMIS Business Case
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“Where do I sign?” How to Build a PMIS Business Case for Executive Buy-In

Monday March 12, 2018      |      By: Alyce Menton

Your organization needs streamlined processes, they want improved project management tools and real-time visibility into project data, and you know how to make it happen – a centralized enterprise-wide project management information system (PMIS). Now, how do you get your senior leadership to agree to make the investment?

It will likely take more than industry metrics showing clear value of streamlined processes, improved communication and collaboration and greater productivity. The answer is to appeal to executive needs, which usually circles around the need for real-time strategic data, both financial and project focused. They want access to current information so that they can make informed decisions. A PMIS is built for that purpose with dashboards and automated reports. 

Second, spotlight the people advantage. Vital to every successful PMIS implementation is the direct involvement of stakeholders in the adoption process and a clear understanding of how a PMIS can save time and money. Gary Taylor, Director of the Pennsylvania Department of General Services (PADGS) Public Works Bureaus, Bureau of Pre-Construction summed it up nicely when asked about the people aspect of modernization. He said, “All the tools don’t make a difference if you don’t have the right focus with the people and make that work.”

Third, estimate as accurately as possible the anticipated time savings and the opportunity for your project teams to spend less time compiling schedules and reports and more time moving projects forward. And talk about workflows. Every large organization has struggled with workflow standardization and data consistency at some time.  Document the value of a structured process and how a PMIS can help create a foundation for consistency.  This step is critical to the executive team, as they will want to know the impacts to the bottom line in dollars and time savings. The more you can quantify into numbers, the more decisionmakers will support your cause.

Fourth, make a plan and manage expectations for PMIS implementation.  While implementation doesn’t happen overnight, the more precise you are about your requirements and needs, the smoother the journey will be. Nasser Fakih, Assistant City Engineer within the Engineering Division for the City of Sunnyvale Public Works Department (SPWD) notes, PMIS implementation is a journey. He says, “Completely reworking your business practices while adopting a digital workflow is a learning process.”

Finally, build a tribe of project champions to support you along the way. Fakih reminds us, “It requires commitment by everyone and support from the PMIS provider to get it right. But once it’s in place, the benefits are amazing.”

For more in-depth discussion about gaining executive buy-in, see the Strategies for Executive PMIS Buy-In whitepaper, downloadable here.


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