What is our primary use case?
We have a smaller organization than some of the other organizations. We have 10 project managers. We manage it for the customer experience division for electronic arts. Therefore, we do only projects wrapped around how to improve our customer experience. Anybody who plays our games, we want to manage those projects to make life better for our customers.
How has it helped my organization?
We are able to organize work. Prior to Enterprise One, the organization had no visibility in the projects that we were doing. We had people doing random projects, and we didn't know if they were benefiting the business or harming the business. The fact that we have visibility into the work that we're doing along with the status of the work that we're doing has been incredibly impactful.
The solution’s integrated product portfolio has transformed our organization’s strategy as we continue to roll out different products. We started with Enterprise One. We now have Projectplace and are looking at use Spigit. We are also looking at all the different integrations with JIRA and Workday. It really has transformed the way that we do panel work and approach our work and company.
We use Enterprise One for the formal things in our organization that have been gated. So, we go through our fiscal year roadmap and we have X amount of things approved. All of those things are required to go through Enterprise One. There were some required to do phase-gate exits and all of those principles. Then, we have the Projectplace that is more task-oriented, and we have a ton of users on that. That is more task, activities, and people looking at doing agile work or combined work. We found a way to use these tools together. Hooking them together, we will do some great reporting. There are some cool things that we're trying to do with those two that will really change the way that we will work.
These are two different teams. The people who are on Projectplace were never Enterprise One candidates. The fact that we were able to get them to use one of our Planview tools and see that there is potential in it, maybe in the future they will be the ones who are running these projects and programs. Or, at least they'll have an idea of what the Planview tools can do. So, we feel like we're in a better starting place with them.
What is most valuable?
The most valuable to us is that we have a standardized schedule. We're able to put in our phase-gates and everything that we need to make sure that we're operating and running our projects effectively.
We now use WRK14 reports and are moving to other more complex reports in order to manage our business.
The solution’s integrated product portfolio has transformed our organization’s delivery because people are a lot more accountable. When you have no accountability, then people don't always deliver the way that you want them to. Once you get accountability, they know that somebody is watching and the way that they manage their work changes quite a bit.
It is flexible. We started off where we had a workflow that had about 150 steps in it with gates, because we didn't know any different. We went back and talked to Planview about it, and said, "We are in a really bad way. We need somebody to help us." They came back and helped us change everything. They helped us undo all the mess that we had created. They moved us to about a 15 to 20 step process. The flexibility of being able to create something, then redo it if it's wrong as you continue to evolve and partner with Planview is really important to us.
What needs improvement?
When you get a tool, you have to know your business before you get a tool. We didn't know our business. We put the tool in and tried to wrap the business around the tool. That doesn't really work. So, we need to continue to work with them to figure out:
- What do we need?
- What is the best solution?
- How do we work with this tool when we just trying to figure out our business?
We're finally at a good place. Now, how do we restart with it the way that the tool thinks about work. Sometimes, it's just not the same way that we do. Therefore, how do we manage that within the business? How do we manage our internal customers? That's what we really have to work through.
The first step was to have Planview come in and retrain our organization. That was really helpful, at least to make people not so mad, because they hated the tool. They were really nasty about it. When we rolled it out to the organization, we rolled it out in a way where we didn't ask for their help. So, there was a small group of people at the leadership level who went in and said, "Okay, this is the tool we're going to use." But, we didn't really ask the people who are going to use the product. When you do that, they get angry.
They don't love that knowledge. Then, we had to go back, and say, "Okay, we're going to start over. Tell us what your grievances are." We had to identify whether the grievance was with having a tool or as a grievance with Planview. They are two very different things. Once we identified what their grievances were, Planview was able to come in, help retrain, and get some of the sentiment better just about the tool and using a product in general.
Primarily, we were only focused on the project side of it. This year, we are trying to roll it out to more operational people, which is different from project side. On the project side, these are people who are sort of career project managers, product managers, and program managers. They're willing to work with us a little bit. When you move over to the operations people, this is not their business. They don't know about tools. All they want to do is help the customers. They don't want to have to deal with tools.
Our challenge will be this tool is complex. It is not necessarily easy to start and learn from the beginning. How do you get people who are not professionals to adopt it, use it, and not be mean about it? That's what we're trying to work with.
For how long have I used the solution?
We are on year four of using Enterprise One.
What do I think about the stability of the solution?
We haven't experienced any issues with the stability of it. So, I feel confident in the Planview tool. I feel confident in the employees. This is our third year of attending Horizons. Every time I meet more of the employees, I feel better about everything. I just get an overall good vibe.
What do I think about the scalability of the solution?
There is so much that we can do. They have Spigit, LeanKit, and all of these things which are really exciting to us. I just have to go find the money, but it's pretty exciting. It's really great. In regards to Enterprise One, they have resource management, and we haven't even touched that. We are just now getting into resource management. There is a lot that we haven't even scratched the surface with using the tools that we have.
We have a super small organization using Enterprise One. Right now, we are at 20 to 30 users. We have primarily only focused on the project side of it. Now, this year, we are trying to roll it out to the operational people.
With Projectplace, about a year ago, we had one user. Now, we have 108 users on it. For us, that is a huge win when we had to fight for every user on Enterprise One. We're not having to do that for Projectplace. Projectplace is now going out and selling itself into the business. So, we have parts of the businesses which are using it that are telling other person's business.
A specific example is the customer experience support: It is all about making it easier to get back in the game and play our games. We have a group that takes our customer escalations and they're able to take those and look at them in Projectplace. They can get cards and match everything up. We're solving their problems faster. We know what their problems are. We're able to group all of their problems together. These are big wins for us in terms of things that we couldn't do before because we were having to do it much more manually before we had Projectplace. So, it really changed the way that we do business.
How are customer service and technical support?
I would rate technical support as a 10 out of 10. We have the benefit of being right down the street from Planview. That helps us quite a bit. We have had no shortage of people willing to help. It's been no secret that we did not start off in a good place, but they helped us. Together, we admitted our flaws and they admitted their flaws, then they helped us get back on track.
We were about to quit because we were so frustrated. They came in and helped us. They did things for free that they probably weren't supposed to do. But, they came in and really tried to save us as a customer to understand what the problems were, what we were dealing with, and help us solve the issue, probably to their detriment financially. This was to make sure that we didn't leave and to help us tell the story. I think that signifies a pretty good company.
Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?
Prior to Enterprise One, we did not have a solution in the business. So, people could use Excel or anything that they wanted.
We also had no reporting. Or, any reporting that we had, it wasn't manual. It was whatever somebody thought it was.
I was hired. We had had six tools come into the environment prior to me coming onboard. So, the company knew that they needed something to organize the work, but they didn't know what. They didn't know why they needed it other than they heard that they needed it.
It was, "Well, we have to have this, and we need it right now."
"Why do we need it right now?"
"Because we do."
Now, we are able to be more structured. We had no structure nor accountability. With the manual reporting, we had no idea if we were on track, behind, or how much we were spending. We couldn't track the way that we did our business. To be able to understand our business and make progress towards our goals, this has been incredibly important. The tool allows us to do that.
How was the initial setup?
The initial setup was super complex. We were being asked questions that we didn't understand. It was pretty clear that we didn't understand. It just wasn't a great experience. We weren't ready for it. It was more complex than what we could take in the environment. We were answering questions on behalf of the entire organization when we didn't know what the organization's needs were. It was complex and compounded by the fact that we didn't know anything, making it incredibly challenging. Some of that was on us and some of that was on them.
If they could walk you through step by step:
- What is it that you're doing?
- What is it that we're doing of this stuff?
- You are making decisions.
We didn't understand the downstream impact. Nobody told us this is a critically important decision, and if you make this wrong, we're going to set up the whole tool wrong. It felt like there were a handful of those. If someone would've said that to us, maybe we would've been like, "Oh yeah, hold on a sec." We probably would've at least paused, which we didn't do.
What about the implementation team?
We did the initial deployment with the help of Planview. We went in and gave them the parameters, and they implemented the parameters that we asked them to do.
What was our ROI?
We have seen ROI with just being able to trace everything, do the reporting, understand the status, the accountability, etc. We have already renewed our contract once. Spending the money on this is a really big investment for us, where with other companies it might not be as much. However, it's a big percentage of our budget. The fact that we've been able to renew is a pretty good indication that the leadership team is seeing value in it.
What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?
I think all in we are at $33,000 a year and that includes Projectplace and Planview. We used to have the integration to JIRA, but we don't pay for that anymore.
Which other solutions did I evaluate?
We did an RFP where we selected Planview. It was an RFP for probably 10 vendors on the list. Workday was on there, for sure. However, we did not look at Microsoft Project because we are an Apple shop. That wasn't anything that we ever wanted to do.
The main reason that we went with Planview was something we haven't even used, which is ironic is we wanted it for the prioritization. With the prioritization, we can move things up and down within the tool. We could show our leadership team because prioritization was taking us like a month and a half. We felt with the tool, it could take us just a few hours. We still use it, but we just don't show it to the leadership team. But, it has helped us.
What other advice do I have?
The tool is a nine out of 10. Mostly, because I don't give anything a ten. There is always areas of improvement. We have had a lot of pushback when people started up in Planview. I think we're past the cultural part of it. I don't know what makes it difficult. I think it's more difficult than other tools that people have used. I hear over and over that it's not intuitive. Some of it is counterintuitive to the other tools that they've used. Once they get going on it, they're better. The word within our user community is that features are great, but the user interface seems to be very difficult for our team to use.
The problem is a lot of them came from Microsoft Project, which is really easy to use, but you also don't get any of the reporting. There are just some things with the parent-child relationships and how you link them. Also, there's something with start and end dates and the rolling of them, which really angers them. They just don't fundamentally understand it.
We were not ready for the tool when they bought the tool in. I would encourage people to know their business, have their processes in place, and understand what they're trying to achieve before they go out and buy the tool. Then, they will be better suited for it. It doesn't matter how amazing the tool is, if they don't have the processes and things in place that they need to do, then it's never going to be successful.
Which deployment model are you using for this solution?
If public cloud, private cloud, or hybrid cloud, which cloud provider do you use?