Tuesday Feb 11, 2014

Manufacturing Today—Innovation and Operational Excellence how to Compete in a Global Marketplace

By: John Reichard, Oracle Primavera Discrete Industry Strategy Director

Manufacturing is critical to the global economy. It is driven by innovation and operational excellence, which impacts the economy and international trade—all in a volatile and demanding marketplace; A global marketplace which over the last few years has been strained by economic, political and environmental stress. Economists describe the business climate as gradually improving but still very sensitive to market conditions and customer demands. Or is this really the new normal environment for businesses?

Manufacturers that survived the difficult economy over the last few years, now face a more competitive environment where they must do more with less to win. They will have to optimize dwindling experienced resources, choose projects wisely for improved financial results, and better manage risk to deliver on time in order to thrive. How will you innovate, evolve and compete to win in this new normal global marketplace?

One way for industries to compete is to strike a balance between innovation and process improvement to better align new product development to corporate strategy. This Innovation brings in new streams of value while process improvement provides the back-end insurance that the innovations achieved will continuously deliver competitive value. New innovation will help increase revenue, market share while building customer value. These are very important drivers to the discrete industries. We find that new product introductions contribute significantly to business growth. Companies that invest in development find it is not an optional extra but rather crucial to business growth and profitability. Is innovation a high priority for your company?

To stay competitive, many industrial manufacturing companies are focusing on global efficiency through greater collaboration, and visibility across program and projects worldwide. This transparency helps, in today’s complex product design and manufacturing initiatives resulting in higher customer satisfaction and profit margins. These metrics are vital to measuring a company’s success in bringing the right products to market on time. Cost overruns or late product launches result in the loss of credibility and financially impact to the bottom-line. How does your company ensure that you are designing, building and delivering products as promised and avoiding costly delays when different functional teams aren’t always in sync?

How do you:

  • Drive Innovation–Innovation is considered one of the most critical drivers to a company’s competitiveness. How do you choose which programs or projects satisfy customer demand, and improve market share with the required return on investment?
  • Manage Risk - Risk requires identification and management to mitigate potential quality, warranty, legal and environmental issues. Are you managing change successfully and mitigating its effects?
  • Understand Capacity–Do you have the right resources to match the demand in the markets you plan to grow in?

Each of these questions can be answered and objectives accomplished with the help of an enterprise project portfolio management solution that can streamline operations, improve time to market, increase agility, and provide visibility and transparency with all stakeholders.

If you would like to know more about how to: compete and win in the global marketplace, then I invite you to visit Oracle’s Primavera industrial manufacturing industry page for more information.

Tuesday Oct 08, 2013

Explore the Fundamental Connections Between Stock Value and Project Management

Senior executives are today more accountable, even vulnerable, than ever before to poor share price performance. There are numerous reasons for this, but the increasing negative impact for organizations means that senior executives need to take a more active role in making the right decisions throughout business operations. According to research conducted by the global consulting firm Booz & Co.1, over the last decade the average tenure of a global chief executive has dropped from 8.1 years to 6.3 years. This analysis of the world’s top 2,500 publicly listed companies found that executive turnover had increased from around 12% in 2000 to 14.3% in 2009, with more than a third (36.7%) of departures in 2009 being dismissals rather than part of a planned succession. project and portfolio management on share price and stock value

For project-intensive organizations, there is even more intense pressure on executives to deliver forecasted returns on investment (ROI). With the current economic climate, shrinking margins and increased global competition, the impact of huge capital investment projects extending beyond their scope and budget carries significant consequences. This places even greater emphasis on capital planning, a core business process that remains fraught with difficulties. In a survey conducted by the Economist Intelligence Unit in October 20102, only 11% of companies could claim they delivered expected ROI on major capital projects 90-100% of the time, and 12% reported planned ROI delivery less than half the time. These results highlight that organizations – irrespective of industry sector – are still struggling to manage risks, accurately predict levels of ROI and consistently deliver bottom line growth from their major capital investments. Bad investment decisions can lead to huge financial losses, which serves to place the spotlight firmly on the capital planning process. It also places greater emphasis on executive decision-making capabilities to determine which potential investments deliver the greatest value and reliability, as well as providing the financial stability to attract funding.

The danger of poor evaluation can quickly lead to a significant reduction in the value of the organization’s overall portfolio and compromise long range capital planning goals. From here, it is a short journey to poor share price performance.

Click here and read this full complimentary paper that looks at the intrinsic connection between long-term capital investment and short-term market performance, and how this can in turn affect the profit outlook for project-intensive organizations. Discover existing research undertaken in this area, and highlight case examples where project management performance has impacted – whether positive or negative – the stock price and, in turn, the overall image of both the company and those in the C-suite of these organizations.

Read here and share with your colleagues.

1Favaro, Ken et al, CEO Succession 2010: The Four types of CEOs. Issue 63 2011. Booz & Co

2“Prepare for the unexpected: investment planning in asset-intensive industries,” Economist Intelligence Unit, January 2011

Monday Sep 30, 2013

Aegion Improves Operations; Gains Consistency; and Increases On-Time, On-Budget Project Delivery

Aegion Corp. is a global leader in infrastructure protection. It provides proprietary technologies and services that protect against the corrosion of industrial pipelines and rehabilitate and strengthen water, waste water, energy and mining piping systems and buildings, bridges, tunnels, and waterfront structures. It is a newly formed parent company for Insituform Technologies, Bayou, Corrpro, CRTS, Fibrwrap, Fyfe, and United Pipeline Systems.

Challenges:

  • Strengthen and standardize project management processes across the organization, starting with the company’s Insituform Technologies group.

  • Increase visibility into project schedules, budgeting, costs, and progress to identify emerging issues quickly and take action to minimize risk.

  • Improve operational efficiency and data integrity, and allow project management teams to focus on strategic priorities.

  • Standardize on a project management solution and integrate it with the company’s legacy enterprise resource planning (ERP) and customer relationship management (CRM) solutions.

Click here to read all challenges

Solutions:

  • Deployed Oracle’s Primavera P6 Enterprise Project Portfolio Management and Primavera Contract Management, Business Intelligence Publisher Edition, and integrated the solutions with the company’s JD Edwards EnterpriseOne 9.0 and Oracle CRM On Demand applications to ensure end-to-end visibility and enhanced control for the company’s pipeline and infrastructure development rehabilitation projects—from new-business wins, through to project completions.

  • Standardized and created a single source for all project scheduling information that improved construction crew utilization, reduced penalties related to delays, avoided rush charges, and improved materials planning and utilization.

  • Gained insight into emerging issues and enabled more rapid corrective action, supporting on-budget and on-time completion of projects, including public sector construction initiatives that require granular reporting.

  • Standardized project scheduling and management processes to help support larger and more geographically dispersed projects.

  • Reduced the need for data re-entry across multiple systems to improve productivity and data accuracy and ensured that project management, ERP, and CRM systems share consistent and up-to-date information.

Click here to read all solutions

Click here to read the complete customer story

Friday Sep 13, 2013

Top Challenges, Implications, and Strategic Solutions for Energy and Utility Companies

The International Energy Agency (IEA) forecasts roughly a $38T capital outlay over the next 15 years for the energy sector. Global energy and utility demand isTop Challenges, Implications, and Strategic Solutions for Energy and Utility Companiesexpected to increase by over one-third in the period to 2035, while the primary energy supply mix shifts considerably to natural gas and unconventional sources. The ability for global power and process owners, operators, contractors, and E&C companies to meet demand will largely depend on their ability to overcome five pain points: a constrained capital market, erratic supply and demand, aging infrastructure, a heightened regulatory environment, and declining global skills.

Iain Graham, director of Process Manufacturing Strategy, Oracle Primavera, hosts a Webcast available On-Demand that spotlights three strategic drivers—operational excellence, financial discipline, and risk mitigation—which are key in driving success and helping to identify, select, execute, operate, and maintain assets in an increasingly complex world. During the Webcast, Iain discusses how financial discipline can help manage capital expenses and focus capital on areas that drive greater shareholder value. Through examples that Iain provides, you can learn how operational excellence enhances efficiency, optimizes resource pools, and reduces waste and inefficiencies. He also covers how improved awareness of cash flow and capital expenditures can help any power and process company better manage and react to uncertainty.

Read the full edition of Engineering News Record’s 2nd edition of Construction Connection to discover more successes and stories in the current and emerging environment in the engineering and construction industry. 

Visit the microsite to read highlight articles from the digital magazine.

Tuesday Sep 10, 2013

Project and Program Management: The Key to Thriving in the Regulation Nation

Written by: Mike Metcalf, Director of Services Industry, Oracle PrimaveraProject and Program Management System for Regulatory Compliance and Control

Between 2009 and 2012, US businesses were burdened with more than $500 Billion in regulation costs. In 2012 alone an additional $215 Billion in final rule costs were added. For financial services organizations, the Basel capital standards, Volcker rule and Durbin Amendment are most often cited as major drivers of additional costs. According to its own reported data, Bank of America spends over $4B on regulatory costs representing almost 3.5% of its market capitalization. In its 2011 annual report, JP Morgan Chase states, "It will take an enormous amount of resources across all of our disciplines – people, systems, technology and control functions (finance, risk, legal, audit and compliance) to get it done right. Over the next few years, we estimate that tens of thousands of our people will work on these changes, of which 3,000 will be devoted full time to the effort, at a cost of close to $3 billion." 

Remarkably, in spite of this explosion of regulations, increasing compliance costs, limited resources and emphasis on change management, most compliance efforts are dispersed across the organization and lack any formalized project and program management controls. As many CIO's have experienced, effective project portfolio management processes and systems can help via their ability to:

  • Communicate and co-ordinate change management activities that span functional and organizational boundaries
  • Improve governance and oversight of business-critical initiatives
  • Identify and eliminate duplicate or rogue initiatives
  • Leverage best practices across the organization
  • Mitigate schedule risks and help control costs

The American Action Forum estimates the total financial services regulatory cost over the last 10 years to be almost $25 Billion and growing. The 2013 Cost of Compliance Survey conducted by Thomson Reuters states that, "The fact that 67 percent of respondents expected their budgets to rise slightly or significantly indicated that those who make budgetary decisions are increasingly risk aware and appreciate the need to have a well-resourced compliance function to mitigate the myriad risks which firms may face in the coming year." It concludes by stating, "It looks as though 2013 will be characterized by the need to juggle a further increase in regulatory communications, to drive the implementation of agreed change and to ensure that senior managers focus on risk management and corporate governance. All this will have to be managed despite a lack of suitably skilled resources."

It is clear that we have entered an era of financial services re-regulation and that these challenges will continue for many years to come. It's time for risk and compliance officers to adopt proven solutions such as project portfolio management to manage the large and growing number of change initiatives resulting from these new regulations. Organizations that excel at managing regulatory compliance will minimize compliance costs, avoid penalties, and leverage regulatory mastery for competitive advantage. 

Monday Sep 09, 2013

Why Government Agencies Need to Prove Value by Producing Incremental Value

For years, government agencies have undertaken ambitious, multi-year projects often without a step-by-step project plan or documented ROI. This inevitably led to waste, a frustrated Congress, and a confused public. Now, government agencies must show their programs will achieve value from the very first stage of development.

By shelving expensive, multi-year IT programs for smaller projects that can show incremental value, agencies can prove to Congress real ROI. This makes it more likely that the agencies will receive continued funding and the projects can continue. Another benefit is that by breaking large projects into smaller ones, agencies can ensure that each phase works properly and will deliver the expected ROI before advancing to the next phase. If progress is not delivered, that project can be canceled or put on hold, without much lost. As Tom Davis, Director of Federal Government Affairs for Deloitte & Touche LLP notes, "significant amounts of government funding have gone to waste due to agencies trying to tackle too much at once." While this thinking is not necessarily new, the current fiscal environment has convinced many that "agile" is the right approach to successful programs. 

"Flat is the new up" may not be an ideal situation, but it is the one government agencies have come to know. To adjust, they will need to become more innovative in the way they extract efficiencies and cost savings out of their operations. Moreover, they will need to prove, every step of the way, that their programs are valuable. In a time of constrained budgets, failing to do so may result in reduced funding.    

Oracle's Primavera provides enterprise investment management technology that allows government agencies to propose, plan, and control investments that present the greatest value to both the agencies and the public they serve. With Primavera enterprise project portfolio management solutions, national and local governments can effectively manage time, costs, resources, contracts, and changes to all types of projects or programs—including management of IT investments, grants, military systems, capital facility projects, maintenance and improvement programs, and more. Learn more here

Thursday Sep 05, 2013

Transform your business with Oracle Primavera

If you use Oracle’s Primavera solutions, and you're attending Oracle OpenWorld, then the Primavera sessions are for you. Featuring 18 sessions, hands-on labs, demos, meet the experts and exhibits. The sessions are designed for you to gain valuable information on how to drive innovation, enhance operations or manage finance & risk, and effectively use our solutions to support both short and long-term growth through better formulation, alignment and execution of corporate initiatives and projects.

Add these ten essential sessions to your schedule:

  • What’s New and the Planned Roadmap: Primavera P6, Primavera P6 Analytics, and Primavera Gateway
  • Improving Productivity Throughout the Capital Asset Lifecycle
  • What’s New and the Planned Roadmap: Primavera Unifier and Instantis EnterpriseTrack
  • Instantis EnterpriseTrack Cloud Service for IT and Enterprise Project Portfolio Management
  • Primavera PPM Solutions for Manufacturing Projects
  • Leveraging Oracle’s Primavera Across the Enterprise at Pacific Gas & Electric
  • New Product Update: Maximize the Effectiveness of Your Scheduling Process
  • Primavera PPM Solutions for Maintenance Projects
  • Primavera PPM Solutions for Capital Projects
  • Qualcomm Streamlines Its Design and Manufacturing Process with AutoVue/Agile Products

In practical self-paced learning sessions covering everything from Oracle’s Primavera P6 solutions to Primavera Portfolio Management, Primavera Capital Planning and Instantis Enterprise Track and Unifier, you’ll discover new ways to derive maximum benefits from your Oracle software.

(Seven labs to choose from - see Focus on Oracle Primavera for more information)

Download the Focus On Oracle Primavera guide (pdf) and stay connected via Twitter.com/@OracleEPPM, LinkedIn, and Facebook/OraclePrimavera.

Tuesday Sep 03, 2013

Accelerating Speed to Market in the Highly Competitive Automotive Industry

In the auto industry, introducing new products to market can cost up to $1 billion depending on the product’s complexity. Getting these products to market on time is crucial in order to realize ROI during the full lifecycle of the product. Without a timely launch, OEMs aren’t only affected, but suppliers, dealer sales & services and aftermarket ecosystems lose out, as well.

Earlier this year, we saw new product launches that struggled and experienced recalls, with the potential loss of thousands of units in sales and corresponding loss of market share and customer confidence -- something that in this competitive environment is hard to win back. Studies also suggest that for every day an automotive launch was late, an OEM missed out on a million dollars in sales.2 One OEM believe