Project Management

Project Management Central

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Topics: Business Analysis, Construction, Organizational Project Management
Enterprise PM Software
I am setting up the Project Management for our company and need some advice on software packages for organizing and managing all of it. We will be using SAP as our ERP software so integration with SAP is a plus. Our business is large equipment manufacturing with project production cycles of approximately 6 months and include Engineering, Procurement, Manufacturing, Shipping and Installation. In addition, we are performing large scale infrastructure improvement projects. I would like to manage these two project groups separately from the same software but have the financials roll up into a common report which pulls labor and material costs from SAP. Upward and downward reporting capabilities are a must. What are your thoughts? Please let me know your experiences with the products available on the market.
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Your turn-key requirements are driving to a MS Project Server. There would be some cost to integrate Project to SAP.

If you are able to break it down to must-haves and nice-to-haves requirements - then you'd probably be able to find less expensive and man-power intensive product.
I work on a similar SAP ERP project, our implementer uses SharePoint to plan, communicate, and document requirements, we are using stand-alone MS Project plan to manage each phase of the project.
Andrew - Thanks for the response. Does your system allow multiple users to modify the information simultaneously and update the system in real-time? I am trying to use the planning, purchasing, cost and production information input into SAP by those sections to drive schedule decisions without a ton of manual input. For our Production work, we have developed an equation that takes Engineering data and outputs a man-hour or lead time number that should be sufficient to make a basic schedule without much additional information. With all of that being said, below are the must-haves and nice-to-haves.

Must haves:
multi-user interface
easy to digest format
integrates with SAP
scalable
simple operation once set up
multi-project visibility

Nice-to-haves:
Simple to set up
onboard reporting templates
email push notifications

Thanks again
You did not describe your functional requirements like resource leveling capabilities, cash flow management, etc.
I expect that Oracle Primavera P6 can fit to your requirements.
If not look at Spider Project.
Like Vladimir noted, Primavera will do as great job as Project for your requirements.
Note that it appears that you don't have either tool and your staff is not trained on them, which translates to your projects costs at approx. 100K to 200K in the first year.

In terms of project management tool; do not fall in to false belief that it will solve your problems with reporting, calculating costs, multi-product management. It WILL emphasize the problems. Most of them are business or leadership problems.

SAP allows mutli-user, multi-level access. All you need is to have an architect & configurator to set it up for you. There are many firms on the market that can do it for you (if your current implementer doesn't do it already).
SAP itself has a project management module. I used it in lot of companies. If not, in my current company where we have SAP, we use Clairy and Azure Devops for all type of project. My recommendation is integrate insted of dintegrate and take into account that the critical success factor is a tool that supports your current project mangement defined process.
I worked with SAP project management module and we found it too inflexible, since we are MS shop, and used MS Projects for other projects, so we stuck with MS Projects tool.

I want to caution that people will choose a tool, then try to fit the tool into their methodology, then try to fit the tool & methodology into their org structure, and lastly they try to fit tool/methodology/org structure to work with their products/services. So wrong.
First understand your customer, then what product/service customer need/wants, and your org structure. Then choose methodology and lastly tool that fits all these criteria.

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