10 unique elements in MPI


10 Break-throughs in our Planning Intelligence solution

We have created a comprehensive and well engineered  solution around a carefully designed database to overcome the drawbacks of existing tools and to adapt to each organization’s culture, maturity level and different needs of people depending on their roles and responsibilities.

We offer one standard platform from which you can combine functions and displays in any way you want. We deliver a number of templates which can serve as inspiration and a starting point. We offer help and support to guide you to a fast and rewarding implementation.

The uniqueness of Marstrand Planning Intelligence (MPI) is in the innovative and practical combination of functions and concepts. Take a few minutes to go through the 10 most important.

 Picture1  Perspectives, configurable for all users

Configure layout of any user dialogue and save it in your menu tree or tiles. Views (grids, table views, graphical interactive charts, Gantt, reports, dash boards etc.)  are combined and placed on the screen (“dock”) and the layout is customized with column chooser, position, naming, command lines etc. And  you can choose to save any parameter e.g. filters, groupings, calculations, choice of accounts, time resolution, etc.

Perspectives support roles throughout the organization, whether you’re an individual, project manager, resource manager, or top/financial management. Views are combined and placed on the screen (“dock”) and configured with columns, data filters, sorting, calculations etc. The perspective is stored in a personal or common menu. Access rights can be defined by administrator.

Also command lines can be customized in the perspective. From ultra simple to advanced.

Next time a click on the perspective in the menu and you will see exactly what you defined.

 Picture2  Flexible time line. One standard solution for all purposes

MPI integrates portfolio, project and resource management in one solution. Strategic planning, portfolio, based on forecasts and pipeline for Projects as well as execution and analysis..

This is possible because of the unique  MPI  option to change time resolution with a click for any  assignment. MPI handles combinations of time resolutions in one environment. You simply increase resolution as needed when an activity comes closer to execution and more detailed control might be needed.

This flexibility also means that all calculations of load, budgets etc. automatically are correct when you zoom in on weeks and days from months.

 Picture3   Assignments. Visual scheduling

You assign persons / teams / budget resources to jobs based on capacity available and match of competences.

Easy, safe and realistic assignment of resources (people, budget resources, materials, etc.) to jobs. Find the right skills to fit the job at the right time, create ideal teams, be more precise. Use filters to find needed staff, the best combination of competences, time, tasks, priorities. You click and enter the hours or percentage of capacity in ”time cells” directly in Gantt.

Work with reality: sick days, conferences, vacations can all cause havoc with planned projects. Shift schedules, adapt to changing requirements, tweak projects, move from details of employee scheduling to overview of the project seamlessly.

You can control the start and end by smart scheduling functions, forward, pull up, step by step or entire project networks respecting capacity constraints and dependencies. You can observe any change and consequence directly in the synchronized Gantt charts.

Picture4   Visual Planning work bench. Synchronized Resource and Project Gantt

MPI is the unique tool with a full generic resource dimension. Essential for realistic planning & execution.

The Resource Gantt synchronized with Project Gantt offers the unique planning workbench incorporating the 3 dimensions of jobs, resource, time and consequences in one function.

It is easy and visual to define and view assignment load, cost and other data by period in Gantt charts. You simply open  “Time Cells” directly under each activity block. You decide the periodization, day, week or month, see point 3 above.

The Resource Gantt will show you load, capacity, delivery, economy etc. for any type of resource, people, equipment, materials, Money. It will color bottlenecks, and other values by period.

Standardize the way you Work. Templates for projects and parts of projects makes it easy to create new projects and consistent access to resources from either an overview or detailed perspective with the ability to shift between days, weeks, or months gives you the flexibility you need.

Picture5  Control of deliverables. Visual Portfolio Leadership

Prince2 and PMI recommends that you focus your project mangement on “products” and deliverables.

MPI is the first application which fully integrates product design with traditional project management.

Graphical definition of Product Break Down (deliverables), and Product Flow (dependencies) (PRINCE2). MPI generates automatically the Project Break Down and Project Gantt. The project plan links backwards to Product Break Down.

Issues, warnings, risk and RAG signals are shown as traffic lights in the deliverable chart. This gives a clear overview of the situation for steering comittee meetings and timely action can be taken on the spot with responsible and deadline.

We call it Visual Portfolio Leadership.

Picture6  Spread sheet booster.  Data interfacing

Spread sheets can be hell. Excessive maintenance, inconsistent, insecure and limited communication.

MPI’s offer the structure and secure accessability to the common database. It offers a calculation and planning engine which is always correct.

Input: MPI takes input from Excel in 3 ways :

–   Cut from existing Excel and paste directly into MPI. Database references are solved automatically.

–   Take an Excel sheet and define data mapping from fields into MPI fields. Excel works as an external input medium with your own calculations.

–   Define a control file to control data mapping for batch jobs.

Output: MPI comes with an advanced spread sheet designer. You can export any MPI spread sheet to Excel or on the web.

This Means easy implementation. because  you can communicate precisely as your people are accustomed to.

MPI also offers other advanced means of data interfacing, e.g. with ERP systems.

Picture7  Powerful calculation engine. Groupings, accounts

MPI is a great vehicle for calculations, horizontally over the time line for any value type combined with vertical summations up through Work Break Down structures and groupings in grids.

Lines in grids and tables can be grouped on any value and parameter you want, e.g. business unit, department. organizational roles, status, priority etc. Grouping can be nested by level. just by dragging column headers.You can click on a group line and fold out to see the underlying details by any period. The smart thing is that every calculation automatically sums up on grouping level.

The account dimension offers you free definition of values you might want to operate with on the time line, associated to assignments. MPI comes with standard accounts for e.g. planned and reported hours, budgets for cost, revenue, and many more. You can define your own accounts and calculation rules, e.g. KPI’s and financials.

In this way you can set MPI up to do almost any imaginable consequence calculation.

Results can be put into Dash Boards, spread sheets or advanced diagrams. Accessible via web.

Picture8  Flexible reporting . Active Dash Boards

MPI has a rich and easy dash board functionality for management information.

You just click to set up links to MPI database as well as external databases. It is saved as a perspective,

The online dash board updates itself automatically.

You are in personal control of your offline dash boards. You take snapshots with a click at any given moment. Data from snapshots are presented in trend lines for any performance parameter e.g. budget.

Picture9  Scenarios and their consequences

Handle the unexpected. When the unforeseen happens, like more effort needed, illness, external demands and, delays in deliveries, you must make difficult decisions about priority, move milestones, reassigment of resources, change of scope etc.

Many decisions are complex because of so many dependencies, between tasks, projects and resource avaliability.

A good way is to prepare scenarios and compare them on a set of parameters.

MPI has uniquely powerful and easy controllable scenario capabilities.

Picture10  Context based learning

 Unique on-line wizard/guide system that works with you, creating your projects, charts, assigning resources, and helping you to do what you need to do, now.