Strategic Project, Portfolio, and Performance Management
HighPoint built its reputation by providing superior project management to its clients. Our legacy foundation in project management means that we approach every aspect of every engagement as a project. We assign a project manager and create a single-page project dashboard to provide real-time status summaries, milestones, issues, risks, and deployment schedules so everyone involved is constantly informed. Our experts have developed our strategy layer upon layer with each project managed. By being one of only 10 organizations participating in the development of International Service Organization (ISO) standards, HighPoint has helped forge the cornerstones of the project management industry, defining the very standards for which it’s measured. HighPoint Global has provided the following services in project and program management:
- Instituted a project management methodologies and program blueprints
- Developed the project status requirements (dashboards) for project performance, reporting, and communication plans
- Instituted the roadmap process for programs’ long-term, strategic vision
- Developed project management processes for CMMI Level 2
- Provided project management training and coaching for new project managers
- Provide project managers who lead project teams for the new releases, key software development, and infrastructure projects
- Managed project training and content teams for technology deployment phases
- Provide cooperation and coordination by leading external project meetings for our clients with various subcontractors
- Developed and managed Project Management Office implementations
HighPoint Global is uniquely positioned to apply project management principles and methodology learned through more than 10 years of superior performance managing project teams. This makes HighPoint a low-risk, high-reward leader for your project and program.
- HighPoint successfully transitioned a $100-million annual project 2 months earlier than the 5-month customer statement of work required.
- HighPoint successfully supported as a subcontractor the quarterly releases of new technology solutions through the development of new workflows, reference materials, training curricula, and job aids. All call center agents now use the new tool to improve efficiency with caller questions and provide more accurate and timely service.
Project Management – Case Study #1
- A federal agency required massive amounts of accounting data to perform its mission on behalf of the citizens it serves. The agency worked with multiple contractors, all of whom had their own general ledger systems. Complicating matters was that the overall system had been designed to accommodate only a certain amount of transaction numbers, all of which were expected to be exhausted within the next several years. Our customer decided that deploying a single general ledger system would achieve economies through standardization, create sufficient headroom, and provide more insight into all aspects of operations. They mandated that all the contractors migrate to the new system on a very tight timetable. Beyond the time and scope pressures, the project involved extraordinary complexity. In addition to all the internal staff and subcontractors located throughout the U.S., it required the cooperation of the company that was maintaining the legacy system, as well as two massive IT vendors. After preliminary efforts for one of the major contractors stumbled due in large part to poor communication, we were brought in to turn that part of the project around and manage its completion. Contract issues between the contractor and one of the IT vendors consumed six weeks of the original timetable, compounding the inherent risk.
Project Turnaround – Case Study #2
- The Client Need: Integrating the infrastructure for separate health insurance companies into a single entity. Divisions of five companies that had been handling processing for a federal government contractor were merged to form a single entity. Each of those divisions had its own infrastructure for processing, as well as its own applications that were integrated with those of the legacy parent companies, making it impossible to share the data and operations that would allow the merger to attain the desired economies. An internal team was given the assignment to decouple all five divisions’ systems from the legacy parent companies and integrate them into a single, consistent environment. Those systems included hardware and other technology, applications, extensive data, security components, and all of the associated infrastructure. Understandably, the effort was a top-three strategic project for the company, and success was critical to continued operation. After nearly six months, management recognized that the project was not progressing at a rate that would allow for completion in the desired time frame. They brought is in to restructure, reorganize, and restart the effort, with a goal of completion in 15 months. Almost immediately, changing priorities within the company trimmed 90 days from that timeline.
Project Management – Case Study #3
- The Client Need: Establish an internal environment and process where successful project management can occur. Insurance companies have a reputation for being so methodical and well-organized that we tend to think of them as staid. But life in the IT department of this carrier was a helter-skelter of conflicting demands, limited resources, and projects that failed to fulfill objectives, deadlines, budgets, or all three. High-priority strategic initiatives for management fell into the chaos and fought with less-critical needs for attention and resources. Staff members struggled to communicate with one another, and rarely had ready answers for executive questions. At management’s request, we studied the department to identify the flaws and develop practical strategies for improvement. It was clear that the project management and software development processes were unstructured and inadequate, which was compounded by a lack of project management experience on the part of the staff. Without a sound framework, there were significant inconsistencies between projects. Additionally, projects were pursued independently, without much thought given to their interrelationship with other projects that were underway.
Project Turnaround – Case Study #4
- The Client Need: Restart a failing health insurance carrier’s high-priority project. To centralize, protect, and streamline data on its policyholders, a health insurance company decided to develop a state-of-the-art data center from the ground up. The multi-million-dollar project was critical to the company’s operations and integral to minimizing liability exposures. Multiple call centers would rely upon information stored in the data center to handle customer questions and issues quickly and accurately. Management determined delivery dates and began to plan around the expectation that the center would be in operation by those dates. However, the project lacked real schedule dates and a clearly understood scope. In addition, while the executive team recognized the importance of the call center, there was not a real sponsor within the company. The project began in an ad hoc manner, and started stumbling almost immediately. Communication was poor, and leadership was not well-defined. As management watched the project team struggle, they realized it was likely that the delivery dates would be missed. We were brought in to get the project back on track, and our first step was to apply a proprietary assessment model that helped us determine the current state of the project, what would be required to get it moving forward efficiently, and realistic expectations for delivery. After presenting a summary of our assessment, we developed an aggressive plan for completing the project, and presented it to the insurer’s CIO to ensure that we had executive-level support. With that support, we created new baselines for the project and developed realistic schedules for each step. We placed an emphasis on improved communication, and established a structure to facilitate sharing of information across the team and to executives. We tracked the plan through every step, right to completion and closure. In the end, the project was completed on time and under budget. The data center went into use immediately, operated as designed through testing and rollout, and continued to serve as the company’s backbone years later.
Project Management – Case Study #5
- The Client Need: Improve their CMMI level to allow bidding on more government projects. As potential government clients become more selective about who should handle major IT projects, a contractor recognized that it was missing out on opportunities. Specifically, prospective clients were expecting contractors to attain at least a CMMI Level 2 rating before they would even consider doing business with them. Well aware of its own lack of expertise with the CMMI process, the unrated contractor turned to an outside consulting firm to help it reach the desired level. But as they stumbled through the process, the contractor realized that the consultant lacked the experience and understanding to drive the effort to a successful completion. “It seemed like the firm was only a chapter ahead of us in the manual,” the contractor’s lead recalled.