Leading project management solution; Microsoft Project Online provides organisations with the potential to collaborate and communicate timely, relevant and up to date project information to users across all levels, from Team Members to Executives and everyone else in between.

Whilst Project Online offers these potential benefits, any organisation contemplating its adoption should be aware that it is not an instant fix and that in order for the initiative to take root and deliver the anticipated business benefits its adoption needs to be treated as a project in its own right.

Organisations that have leapt straight in and not invested time in preparing for the adoption of Microsoft Project Online have learnt some painful and expensive lessons and in some cases have failed to derive any business benefit at all from their investment in the solution.

To avoid you encountering the same problems should you be considering adopting the PPM Solution the following have been identified as crucial Success Factors for a Project Online deployment:

  • Actively engage the organisation’s executives
  • Develop a strong business case for the PPM Initiative
  • Allocate sufficient up-front time
  • Develop clear and complete business goals, requirements, and usage scenarios
  • Involve representatives from all user groups
  • Conduct a multi-staged roll-out
  • Provide continuous communication
  • Prepare the users for the deployment
  • Train users at all experience levels

1. Actively EngageSenior Stakeholders / Execs
You need to get buy-in at all levels, but importantly you need the organisation’s execs to lead by example, because if they don’t it’s likely to have a detrimental impact on the overall uptake of the solution(s).

2. Develop a Strong Business Case forMicrosoft Project Online
Assess your current situation and identify how the Microsoft Project Online PPM Solution can deliver real business benefits that will represent a good return on investment and provide tangible benefits to users at all levels. Thankfully we’ve written an eBook on Building the Business Case for Microsoft Project Online to help you out.

3. Allocate Sufficient Up-Front Time
Fail to plan, plan to fail –a bit clichéd but anyone with project experience will tell you that getting ready is the secret of success. Try to avoid being rail-roaded into implementation before the groundwork has been done.

4. Involve Representatives From all User Groups
Engaging the various usertypes from the outset to promote a sense of involvement and engagement in the initiative. Gain their input and understand what they want to see from their perspective. Failing to engage those who are impacted by the solution can result in poor adoption and ultimately a failed implementation.

5.Increaseyour PPM Maturity with a Phased Implementation
Don’t try to boil the ocean, a phased implementation is much more likely to succeed than a ‘big bang’ approach. The requirements (business needs) should be defined and prioritised and rolled out as the maturity of the organisation or department increases.

6. Provide continuous communication
Communicationand effective change management are key ingredients of successful projects. Consistent communication of how the PPM implementation is progressing and the incoming changes & benefits will help engage the user base and prepare users for its adoption.

7. Train users at alllevels
You could have the worlds best solution, but it will not be any good without training. Ensure that the users are trained on both the configured solution from the perspective of their use case and aware of the supporting processes.

By adopting the suggested tips you can significantly improve the chances of success for your Microsoft Project Online implementation.

If you would like to discuss your requirements around Microsoft Project Online and discover how we can assist, then please contact us.

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By: Hannah Francis

Hannah Francis

Published: 30 March 2021

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