Business Objective Overview - Project Management
Forward-thinking companies in every market realize that automated project management and collaboration are required to maintain the competitive edge and many of these have turned to Microsoft SharePoint as a viable platform since legacy applications have become prohibitively expensive. Microsoft does provide out-of-the-box tools for SharePoint-compatible workflow automation and project management but the steep learning curve required by these is overwhelming for most non-technical users. Some companies and their contractors pursue custom .NET or Java applications but this leads to the same cost issues faced with legacy platforms. Worse yet, the maintenance cost from this type of project can run 3-4 times the initial development cost. Aside from functional changes, costly code modifications are guaranteed to occur
every time a major SharePoint release is deployed. What companies need instead is a suite of commercial components that can be deployed without programming and combined to create powerful business applications. Bamboo Solution's portfolio of components is designed to meet this need. From workflow and document management to cross-project management and collaboration, Bamboo Solutions allow SharePoint to quickly support a host of critical business applications
- applications configured (not programmed) to your specific needs. Bamboo's Project Management Central application with over 50 other SharePoint components can be combined and configured to support the most challenging project management and collaboration requirements across industries.
- Real Estate Project Management and Collaboration
With urban residential communities in nineteen states under management, a large internal team of industry professionals, and an under-staffed IT department, a property management firm was struggling to keep tabs on the various projects in process at any given time. A formal project management office (PMO) would have been overkill, and spreadsheet-based project management was not getting the job done. One of the biggest challenges the firm faced was the sharing of project-specific information with appropriate users while not sharing it with everyone in the organization. The firm was interested in what could be done with SharePoint out-of-the-box, or with third-party components that would help in controlling costs while enabling the correct solution for the firm. The firm determined that a combination of SharePoint with the Bamboo Ultimate Library would provide an effective solution in much less time and at a fraction of the cost of a fully-custom application.
The new Project Management Information System (PMIS) allowed project teams to collaborate while aggregating important project information up to a dashboard that managers can use to easily check the pulse of active projects and overall resource allocation. Proactive email reminders pushed from the system make sure that project team members don't forget about important tasks and events. They also ensure that the system stays updated by sending reminders when assigned tasks are overdue. The property management firm saves time and money on their development and maintenance projects by increasing visibility, coordination and accountability through the use of the new PMIS.
To further support the PMIS and supplement team training for updated processes, the firm also implemented an online Knowledge Base using SharePoint and the Bamboo library. It was extremely easy to implement and provides answers to questions commonly asked by project managers and project team members. The Bamboo solution provides all the features of a complex knowledge base without any custom development effort. Because users can rate and comment on articles, the content of the knowledge base continuously improves. If a project manager or team member cannot find what they need, they submit a request which gets routed to the appropriate subject matter expert. Responses are monitored to ensure that users don't wait too long for an answer.
SharePoint doesn't provide a Knowledge Base solution out-of-the-box. Configuring a solution like the one offered in the Bamboo library would take a considerable amount of time and effort, not to mention some custom development effort. Instead, the firm was creating knowledge base article content within 30 minutes of installation of the Bamboo product. The knowledge base will quickly grow to hundreds of articles that provide valuable information for the firm's project teams 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.