CA PPM Review

A single source to capture all IT project information. Easy access for global teams.


What is most valuable?

The best thing is one single source to capture all our IT project information. We are a very big company all over the world. We have all the data in one spot. The product is easy to access, easy to compile and pull up reports, with everybody working to the same tool. Training makes it easier. There are other things that we can add-on or we can expand upon. Because we're going to be implementing Agile, Agile Central, there are benefits of using the software as a service (SaaS) as a service platform We don't have to accommodate physical infrastructure for it. It's maintained on the cloud. People can access it anywhere. It makes it a lot easier too. We have people all over the world. I'm sure cost is probably a big benefit as well for us overall.

How has it helped my organization?

We are still early on. For the leadership, they see it as, perhaps, a more accurate way of gathering information for their decision making and as a single source. They don't have to go to every site and ask questions, try to gather and compile data from different sources or different Excel spreadsheets. We can collaborate with various teams running projects or portfolios around the company and we can gather data in different ways. We are using fields such as master programs. If we have major programs for the entire corporation, then we can compile and see what everybody is doing that is actually effecting, or not effecting, those programs. We make sure that we leverage resources and that we're not doing redundant work. If we have people working on the same things, why do we have different teams working on similar items? Maybe we could just put them together or maybe we can reapply those resources.

It helps us align to the overall business IT strategy. We had a bit of a restructuring and reorganization. We also try and demonstrate to the business the added value that IT has. I think this is a good way of being able to manage our own resources, and show that we are adding value to the organization.

What needs improvement?

We're pretty new so I don't know all the capability that the tool has. From what I'm hearing here, I see there's a lot more capabilities. We are running with version 14.3, straight out of the box. I don't think I've explored everything it can do. I think one of the things that I would like to see is more workflow. I would like to see more ability to send out communications from the tool, feedback to remind people, and let them know the things that they need to do. That would be very helpful. There are a lot of fields in the tool. When people first see it, they are overwhelmed by the magnitude of it. It probably could be more customized and configurable to the site so that we don't throw the stuff out there and people get overwhelmed by it. At the same time, I know it gives flexibility. I think it probably can be managed. I just don't have the technical side of it to see if we can do that.

For how long have I used the solution?

We just started using it in May.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

I think the stability has been pretty good. I really haven't had any issues with it. I see, from coming here to this event, that it's very widely used. I didn't grasp the magnitude of it. It has been used for many years by many companies. It's something that's been around and it's not something new. It's been proven and tested.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

I think scalability has been easy. I think it works well. We have almost 3,500 users and licenses around the world. I think it was an easy transition to do that. I look forward to see how we can do this with Agile Central because that's the direction we are going now.

How is customer service and technical support?

We have folks inside our group, our liaison, that deals with technical support. I haven't had to directly deal with the folks in CA. I think our folks, internally, are doing a good job. I think we probably need more internal resources or maybe have a direct link to those technical resources. I think that was, maybe, an internal way that our company is trying to handle it. Instead of having everybody going directly to CA, we want to have a middleman to whom we can funnel our issues.

Which solutions did we use previously?

We were using a SharePoint site in our Aerospace Group and our SBG, our Strategic Business Group, which is Aerospace. We had another couple of homegrown applications, the ones that were used for the financial piece of it. Now that we're going to this tool, it's great because it offers a lot more flexibility.

How was the initial setup?

I was involved a little bit towards the tail-end of the installation. I was definitely involved in delivering training to our users because we had different business groups.

What about the implementation team?

in-house team

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

There were some other tools we tried. I was not at that startup. I think it we looked into Accolade because I think that's being used by the Aero Engineering Group. We do have JIRA. We've tried moving to JIRA and I don't think JIRA had all the flexibility and the robustness that CA PPM does. To me, why even go there?

What other advice do I have?

I think we moved to it fairly quickly once we got going. I think it's easy to move to. It seems to offer a lot of advantages, tools, and functionality. Just try it out. The company has been around and the solution has been used for a while. It's been proven and tested. It's not something new. Just give it a try.

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