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Program Manager at a healthcare company with 1,001-5,000 employees
Real User
Top 20
Reports and dashboards allow us to have more flexibility but it is lacking the ability to edit items in bulk and save drafts
Pros and Cons
  • "PPM Pro is really great at the portfolio level like seeing what projects are in flight versus complete, or maybe not started. The portfolio level view is good for stage-gate management specifically."
  • "It takes more time than it should to create a new project because we can't bulk edit things very easily. That is definitely an area that has room for improvement."

What is our primary use case?

My primary use case for this solution is for research and development projects.

How has it helped my organization?

PPM Pro is really great at the portfolio level like seeing what projects are in flight versus complete, or maybe not started. The portfolio level view is good for stage-gate management specifically.

What is most valuable?

The most valuable features are: 

  • Projects 
  • Portfolios
  • Reports
  • Dashboards

We track all of our development projects in the system so it's good to have visibility across multiple projects instead of just having Microsoft projects being used on local computers. And then the reports and dashboards allow us to have more flexibility or more consolidated views for different types of users.

It enables us to create reusable project templates that reflect our project management life cycle. It has made our project management process a lot less manual.

PPM Pro is good for viewing projects and timelines. You can see a Gantt Chart, but again, there's no visual, so we have to export the project and get a visual or use an office timeline or other forms of a timeline visual. That's a really manual process.

To an extent, it provides managers the insight they need to empower decision-making. The lack of robust resource planning is not good and that's difficult to manage.

It has helped to reduce project delays by roughly one to three months.

It doesn't help us to increase the number of projects in my company but that's not a bad thing because we were doing too many before. 

What needs improvement?

It takes more time than it should to create a new project because we can't bulk edit things very easily. That is definitely an area that has room for improvement. 

I would like to have the ability to edit items in bulk and save drafts. It's one or nothing. You can't save drafts.

Another area of improvement is the system's slow for projects with more than 600 line items.

There is also no timeline visual, it's only a Gantt Chart.

Resource management and planning are difficult at the headcount level. In the next release, I would like to have better scenario planning for resources and portfolios.

The process for building a team within a project is manual and difficult. The system doesn't provide recommendations. Creating a new project can take a week. 

I also find their task management features to be poor because we don't have the ability to bulk edit or scenario plan. You can't save drafts. The spreadsheet editor doesn't allow you to edit all of the fields, only a subset of fields. And the spreadsheet editor is the recommended workaround solution, but it's not robust.

For how long have I used the solution?

I have been using Planview PPM Pro for about two and a half years. 

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

Stability is not great. We often find a lot of issues and the timeframe for issue resolution is longer than is ideal or to be expected.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

I am neutral about the scalability. That's not something we really have spent too much time diving into.

How are customer service and technical support?

I would rate their technical support a six out of ten. It's slow. Oftentimes it would be faster to just speak with somebody in the technical team, not an account manager. I would give their technical team an eight out of ten. 

How was the initial setup?

The initial setup was straightforward. We had a really good implementation team but unfortunately, our account manager who started with us is no longer with Planview.

It was really fast, it took around a month. We had a full project plan for it that we worked with Planview on creating.

Three hundred people in our company work on PPM Pro. You could call them the development team, project managers, portfolio managers, executive leadership managers, and cross-functional teams. It's just myself and a partner who work on the maintenance. 

In terms of the number of projects that we use PPM Pro for, it's adapted 70% and we do have plans to increase usage. 

What was our ROI?

I have seen ROI but I don't know the amount.

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

We also looked at CA Technologies and Daptiv. 

The fully integrated solution that PPM Pro said they had between PPM Pro and Projectplace was not a true statement after implementation. So we've been working with them on making that happen. Other platforms were very stale and out of date. The visuals that we were shown for PPM Pro were actually, Enterprise One, not PPM Pro, so that was a bit misleading.

We also use Microsoft solutions for project management. They are doing far better than Planview is doing right now.

For individual projects, I would give a nine out of 10 for Microsoft versus Planview being a six or seven out of 10. And then for portfolio analysis, it doesn't really provide much of an option there. Planview has got that, PPM Pro is better in that regard.

What other advice do I have?

My advice would be to know your business case and make sure you test that in the sandbox environment.

The biggest lesson I have learned is that the current editing capabilities and the task list are really difficult and arduous and that it's much easier to build out a project plan in Microsoft Project first and then upload it once it's completely finalized. So it's not really somewhere to build a project.

I would rate Planview PPM Pro a six out of ten. 

Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

On-premises
Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
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