Top 5 Reasons to Run Your IT Projects on Salesforce
This interactive eBook explains the top five reasons why organizations like yours already choose to run their projects, processes and workflows on the Salesforce platform. Read on to find out more.
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1. Reduce Handoffs
Managing IT projects can be a time-consuming process. With so many different project types and cross-project dependencies, there’s a lot of information and knowledge that needs to be transferred in a structured – and ideally repeatable – way within your organization.
By running your projects from Salesforce, new projects can be launched from a single click. You can even leverage templates to drive best practices through your company and keep your whole updated on progress by displaying your project status.
This product has helped us scale our services and develop our staff. We can easily see project status at a glance, profit margin, cash and revenue forecasting, expense management, rate cards for clients and projects, resource planning, and client KPIs.
Tim Lockie, CEO, Now IT Matters
One system gives you control
By storing all of your information from across the whole project lifecycle in one single system, you can manage all your stakeholders – and your time – far more effectively. All data is accessible from the same place projects are being managed – meaning there’s no need to switch between Salesforce, spreadsheets or any other form of siloed technologies something that takes time and compromises quality. Everyone is working from the same system, with the same information; anything from client communications through to task assignments, all managed in a single platform.
Salesforce also ensures that everyone has visibility of the project. When delivering client-facing projects you can use an ‘external view’ and communities to bring customers into the picture, allowing you to share project updates in real time, alongside other information like project meeting minutes. Crucially, you can also use permissions to ensure you’re sharing the right information with the right people, at the right time.
2. Process Improvement
By giving your team a way to access crucial data (on anything from needs, history, interests and even their frustrations), your team can serve experiences tailored that meet the needs of your customers. You can see what is working, and why. And, by templatizing the approaches that work, your best practices can be followed every time.
Templating and automating repeatable processes means you’ll be able to follow your organization’s best practices, while also saving time during project creation and set up.
If you’re working on an IT project worth millions of dollars, it’s vitally important that processes are followed correctly – and that means getting approval from the right stakeholders at the right stages of your project.
By running your IT projects on Salesforce, you can ensure that your approvals processes meet the rigorous standards your projects demand, even if multiple approvals are required. You can set approval routing based on certain criteria, and even enable alerts letting you know when something has been approved or rejected.
The approval processes in Salesforce can be used to approve or reject at stage gate checkpoints. The logic behind unlocking records when a gate is passed can be complex though, and making a custom-build integration with Salesforce is likely to be difficult and costly. Some apps, like Cloud Coach, have stage gate functionality built into their solutions. You should be looking for a Salesforce solution that allows you to define your gate process along with what information is required to pass each gate. With the right Salesforce solution, you can:
- Prioritize high ROI projects over low ROI projects leading to better overall fiscal performance for your business
- Minimize wasted spend and effort for you team
- Re-work initiatives to extract repeatable value
Your IT project processes can also be improved by automating aspects of your project. We explain more on automation in the Time Savings chapter.
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3. Resource Management
Managing projects involves managing lots of moving parts. And, with people costs invariably forming a large proportion of your costs, finding the right resources with availability at the right time is one of the trickiest, and most important, aspects to master.
For any project or planned project, it is essential to have a clear understanding of what employees are suited to the task at hand, what level of expertise in the skill each employee has, and ultimately are they available when they are needed?
Optimizing your IT projects through resource management on Salesforce allows your organization to always prioritize high value work with your current availability of resources.
A Salesforce-native solution can help you deliver the functionality needed to plan and execute your projects. With a tool that is capable of capacity and demand management, resource utilization, and can track both time and progress, you can improve resource efficiency and utilization. Ultimately benefiting your business’ bottom line.
Assign your team to projects based on skills and availability
Project execution involves a vast array of team members, carrying out a range of specialized tasks at different times throughout the project.
Making sure you manage your processes as effectively as possible is going to be key to trust, satisfaction and, ultimately, project success. If you’re managing multiple projects and business units, the process of assigning team members to a project can be a daunting administrative task… But it doesn’t need to be.
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4. Time Savings
Although no two customers – or projects – are the same, processes are largely repeatable. In fact, repeatable processes make up over 70% of every companies workload. So how can you help your organization be more efficient when undertaking your IT projects?
There are some great project management apps pre built and available on the AppExchange to get you started. Most of these support the notion of project templates, which allow you to build out repeatable lists of your important tasks. So when you create a new project your team instantly knows what tasks need to be done and by when.
More advanced solutions such as Cloud Coach allow you to template much more than just project tasks, so you can follow best practices and speed up delivery across all areas of your project including requirements, goals, documents, financials and more.
Now you’ve templated your best practices, why not take that performance increase to the next level by automating your processes? You can automate items across your projects including demand intake and requests, approvals processes, or even project priority rankings.
The options are almost endless, and best of all the automation is the same automation your team already uses for Salesforce so there is no need for your admins to learn a second system, you just leverage the existing skills they already have.
Even meetings can be templatized, allowing you to set what should be discussed, so you never miss an agenda item again!
5. Better KPI Reporting
Collecting data is one thing, but presenting it to your management team in a manner that lets them make informed decisions to improve the business is another. In a busy work day, accessing that information needs to be easy, sharing it needs to be simple, and it should be presented in an easily digestible, relevant format.
That’s why your Salesforce IT project solution should come with a set of out of the box reports while also allowing further customization, so all the reports and dashboards that your executives need to make decisions to drive your business forward are always at hand. By running your projects on Salesforce, you can report on all your KPIs in real time, 24 hours a day from any device, and easily share with relevant executives – to same even more time, these emails can be automated to send at a regular cadence of your choosing!
So, you’ve taken a look at how using Salesforce for project portfolio management could be the right step for your organization. The next question you need to explore is: how do I make that happen?
So, you’ve taken a look at how using Salesforce for IT projects could be the right step for your organization. The next question you need to explore is: how do I make that happen?
By leveraging the expertise of your consulting partners, or even your internal Salesforce experts, you may have the capabilities to build a basic project management solution on Salesforce in house if your needs are simple and unlikely to change. Or you might considering buying an AppExchange solution instead. Before making any decision though, there are a number of factors you should consider. Cost, control, maintenance and risk will all need to be carefully evaluated.
There’s a great Buy or Build guide available at Projects on Salesforce to help you decide what makes the most sense for your organization.
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