Encouraging exec engagement with exec-ready portfolio and project information

by Rupert Taylor, Co-Founder of Kivue / 3/13/2019 1:42:02 PM

Ensuring senior executives are engaged and actively involved in their portfolio of projects is an ongoing concern for businesses of all shape and size. Gaining senior leaders’ involvement is crucial to the success of the portfolio as well as any individual project and execs are increasingly keen to be as involved as possible. However, making it happen remains a struggle for the vast majority of project managers and PMOs.

Businesses must make it as easy as possible for their execs to quickly and easily understand how their portfolio is performing. Senior execs want to receive concise, visual information they can digest in minutes, yet they continue to be supplied with long-winded project reports and slide packs in various formats – which understandably leaves them frustrated.

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Discover more

To find out more about the growing gulf between project managers and their exec teams and the impact this is having on the business world, sign up for our webinar The Project/C-Suite Communication Chasm.

The webinar, which begins at 12.30pm on Tuesday 19th March, will further expand on Kivue research into execs’ reporting preferences and the information that project managers are delivering.

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Project managers and PMOs find it a huge challenge to provide the level of information required in the formats that engage senior executives with the tools they have at their disposal. Furthermore, many of the people who are delivering and reporting on projects are either external contractors or just normal operational people who often won’t have specific project management expertise or appropriate training in the PPM tools within the business.

Enhancing exec engagement

Meeting senior execs’ needs and requirements is reliant on PMOs and project managers providing concise, business-critical data that stimulates exec level engagement and delivers actionable insights. This requires a solution that eases the reporting process, simplifies communication and rids them of ineffective methods and tools.

Simplifying the reporting process provides fingertip control to the project manager – boosting collaboration and encouraging quality across all areas of portfolio and project management. Project managers are able to provide execs with insights on their iPad or smartphone, which allows them to explore that information in the level of detail they require.

Rather than becoming frustrated with inconsistent processes, senior execs can look forward to drillable and concise reports that enable them to quickly understand how their portfolio is performing and what support they need to inject, whenever and wherever it suits them.

The value of visual

Engaging senior execs to support the delivery of successful portfolios of projects is dependent on providing highly visual and dynamic views of data. There is, therefore, a significant opportunity to transform project and portfolio reporting from text heavy and detailed reports into concise, visual and dynamic overviews.

The majority of execs don’t have the time to pick through in-depth, complicated documents. They don’t want to have to fight to find the information they need, which is often hidden within unclear, text-heavy spreadsheets and slide decks.

Instead, the modern exec requires concise, highly visual information that provides the full history of milestones, deliverables and project risks in an accessible, visual, easy to understand view of their portfolio. Yet very few are able to enjoy this luxury.

Keep it simple

PowerPoint and Excel have become the de facto, go-to format of choice for project reporting. The main contributing reasons for this are project managers finding their PPM tool too complicated, people running projects not being trained project managers so revert to what they know, and businesses employing large teams of contractors struggling to encourage the universal use of their PPM tool.

But this widespread use of tools that aren’t fit for reporting purposes inevitably encourages inconsistent formatting that goes against everything execs want. Project managers aren’t employed to create visual reports, they’re good at delivery so they need a tool that enables them to deliver on execs’ demands.

Time is precious

Providing reports that don’t meet execs’ needs and preferences not only serves to frustrate them, it also sees project managers’ valuable time and resources wasted preparing and updating reports to respond to exec-level queries. Recent research by Narrative Science found that two-thirds of respondents (66%) spend more than half of their weekly working lives on manual reporting tasks, while one third (32.5%) spent three-quarters of their working day simply compiling reports.

Rather than exhaustively wrestling with ineffective tools that aren’t fit for requirement and don’t present the clear and concise information that execs require, portfolio managers need a tool that brings reporting into the modern day and makes their lives easier. By using smarter reporting processes, delivery teams can halve the time spent on reporting and double their focus on delivery and driving value to the business.

This more efficient approach to reporting can bring the time required to complete weekly reports down to just 10 minutes, while a monthly report can be done and dusted in just 20 minutes. The data entered in these reports can then automatically populate concise, consistent and visual exec ready views of the portfolio and governance meetings can be delivered straight from the tool – putting an end to the use of endless PowerPoint slides and high maintenance Excel spreadsheets for portfolio review meetings.

Time to perfect your reporting

Kivue Perform provides a solution to the issues outlined above, enabling project managers to keep things simple. The tool helps deliver a highly visual overview of your entire portfolio of projects. Execs can access the status of projects and identify the issues that demand their attention whenever and wherever it suits them. And the project manager can focus on what they do best, delivering successful projects rather than time-demanding reporting processes.

Kivue Perform can either work in conjunction with existing tools, such as finance systems and your enterprise PPM tool, or it can operate on a standalone basis. The immediate visibility and transparency that Kivue Perform gives to data that has been entered into the PPM tool enhances the quality of the input and the value derived from the enterprise PPM tool thereafter.

The Kivue Perform portal enables project managers to easily roll-up business critical information through visually engaging, attractive reports. Execs are able to access it via their iPad or smartphone, quickly understand the performance of their portfolio, and explore and drill into it as and when they need to.

It’s time to wave goodbye to soulless PowerPoint slides and Excel spreadsheets and usher in consistent, concise reporting that provides the level of information that encourages execs to take an active involvement in your projects.

Discover more

To find out more about the growing gulf between project managers and their exec teams and the impact this is having on the business world, sign up for our webinar The Project/C-Suite Communication Chasm.

The webinar, which begins at 12.30pm on Tuesday 19th March, will further expand on Kivue research into execs’ reporting preferences and the information that project managers are delivering.

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