Tuesday Jun 28, 2016

Learn How Oracle's Primavera Smart City Projects Solution Can Reduce the Risks of Transformation Initiatives

Cities throughout the world are facing similar pressures—growing populations and heightened expectations among constituents are spurring planners to introduce a wide range of modern citizen services. Smart City transformation initiatives are one answer, but they also present significant hurdles.

"To implement a transformation roadmap, leaders must orchestrate many interrelated projects and initiatives," says Werner Maritz, Oracle Director of Public Sector and Infrastructure Strategy. "They often span multiple areas, including transportation, energy, water, education, healthcare, safety, and security. As a result, planners must successfully manage complex project portfolios."

It's no wonder that cities are struggling with all this complexity. For example, to ensure maximum value creation for the citizens, city leaders must select the correct projects to implement from the large number of possible opportunities available to them. Second, these stakeholders must secure adequate funding for all projects selected, either from public or private sector sources. Lastly, leaders must accurately track how these funds are being allocated to specific projects in the city, thereby ensuring financial governance across the Smart City project portfolio.

A new interactive playbook, "360° Overview an Oracle Primavera Framework," explains the forces fueling Smart Cities transformations and offers practical advice and case studies to guide the creation of successful implementation strategies.

The playbook also provides insights into Oracle's Primavera Smart City Projects Solution, which draws on the extensive capabilities of the Oracle technology platform. The solution deals effectively with the complexity of working across multiple verticals or responsibilities in the city through its easy to use web based interface. The solution's ability to manage a program level critical path schedule across multiple projects simplifies the co-ordination of delivery dates and milestones between various contractors and suppliers, provides visibility of relevant project information to all stakeholders involved in bringing the Smart City transformation initiatives to citizens. Post-build Oracle's Primavera continues to deliver visibility, providing full infrastructure management across the entire lifecycle.

"The modern city leader understands that a technology platform like Oracle Primavera could assist them in managing the complexity and delivering real value to their citizens in exchange for the taxes levied by the city," Maritz says. "We can help with the processes and systems to assist the people in building their capabilities in this area."

Download the Interactive Playbook: 360° Overview An Oracle Framework. Take advantage of additional Smart Cities resources, including whitepapers, videos, and solution briefs.

Friday May 20, 2016

1: IDENTIFY - what to build and where to build it

Written by: Werner Maritz, Director Public Sector and Infrastructure Strategy, Oracle Corporation

The physicist William Pollard said that “those who initiate change will have a better opportunity to manage the change that is inevitable.”

This is essentially the approach that smart business, technology, and political leaders are taking when it comes to considering the future of cities across the globe. The world’s population currently stands at 7.5 billion – and 54% of it is urban. By 2050 the UN predicts that another 2.5 billion people will have been added to urban populations, adding further strain.

This is increasing the sense of urgency for smart city visionaries to turn their plans into reality – and they also need enough time to test and learn before an urban crisis takes hold.

The first step in planning a smart city project is to identify the constraints on urban populations, followed by defining the concepts and visions that can address these constraints. Once the problem and apparent smart solution has been formulated in initial planning, the project must be cross-examined using all the data available. Smart city projects may seem smart today but do data forecasts also indicate that the project will be fit for purpose after completion? Tomorrow’s critical issues may be different or more pronounced, and your smart city project must be able to cope to avoid becoming redundant or failing to deliver the cost savings that smart cities are capable of.

It’s this future-gazing approach to problem solving via smart technology systems that will define the projects worthy of investment from the rest of the pack.

Another crucial element of the project identification process is finding out who can support and build these projects, and be under no illusion - there are huge risks involved, especially when projects are funded with public money.

Even with the best intentions, overhauling a public system will come under intense scrutiny so it’s vital that the right contractors, materials and project ‘owners’ are identified from the start.

The fastest growing sector for smart initiatives is the automation of industry – but today there are projects that range from NFC enabled parking guides which reduce traffic congestion, to open data schemes that give citizens access to better information about their city. All successful smart city projects – big or small - start with a bold, but thoughtful, vision and must sit on a foundation of careful research.

Oracle Primavera’s SMART City Projects solution helps cities manage these challenges using modern collaborative, social and mobile tools, backed with disciplined project management and analytical applications at the core. To find out more, visit our interactive playbook here https://goo.gl/1rxGdc

Thursday Mar 03, 2016

How can I deliver better projects in my Smart City?

By: Werner Maritz, Public Sector and Infrastructure Industry Strategy

The world is watching - 10 Game Changing Characteristics

Globally city managers are faced with an ever-increasing city population and a decrease in financial and human resources to deliver adequate services across the city region. The challenge of ensuring the city’s sustainability must be seen against a backdrop of increased environmental and social awareness, economic pressure and competition for public and private investment in and around the city. City managers are often faced with challenges related to ensuring basic human rights, dignity, safety and security for the poorest of residents while delivering on the life style demands and expectations from the richest of residents. Often these diverse groups are living in close proximity of each other and resources must be allocated and shared. Given this familiar situation, city management need to prioritize capital and social investment to deliver on the strategic objectives of the city, a fine balancing act indeed.

City managers need to take a holistic approach in planning the future growth and improvements across the city to ensure not only cost-effective services delivery of and new infrastructure but also ensure synergy across the city responsibilities related to Built Environment, Economic and Social Infrastructure to ensure the economic, environmental and social sustainability of the city. From breaking down the traditional silo approach of the City departments to having real-time insight of the transversal infrastructure demand and backlog across these departments is critical to effective investment planning in the city. Eliminating duplication of effort between departments and leveraging synergy to achieve common objectives is key to a successful Smart City Transformation Roadmap.

Leveraging continuous technology advances and improving cost-benefits ratio of technology to improve the productivity of the city’s infrastructure, city managers face an ever-increasing portfolio of new projects to be delivered across the city. Often these are complex, long term programs consisting of multiple sub-projects to plan, co-ordinate, and implement with due regard to operational effectiveness improvements in the process. Monitoring performance and taking timely corrective action is critical in delivering these long-range programs on time and within budget in a complex delivery environment with multiple stakeholders.

Effectively transitioning the city’s new assets into the operations and maintenance phase is critical to ensure early value generation from these investments, and to manage and maintain these assets at their design capacity and capability over many years to come.

 

Oracle Primavera Smart City Projects Solution

A significant challenge in the implementation of Smart City Transformation Roadmaps across the world is related to securing adequate funding for the projects on the roadmap. Development Financing Institutions (DFI) and potential Public Private Partnerships (PPP) indicate that adequate funding is available to realize the Smart City Transformation goals but they have two main investment decision considerations:

  • The availability of investment grade project opportunities, and
  • The assurance that adequate financial control and governance processes are in place during the project implementation phase.

The Oracle Primavera Smart City Projects Solution delivers 10 characteristics, which will significantly contribute to meeting these requirements:

1. Implement a detailed project portfolio management process to show the alignment of the investment opportunity with the overall strategic objectives of the city. Track the development and approval of deliverables across project development phases. Show how the business case for the project supports the longer term vision of the Smart City transformation roadmap and how benefits realization will be tracked once in operation;

2. Establish a standard platform for program and project set-up, project management and project close-out processes. Ensuring predicable and repeatable project processes and structures facilitate effective project administration;

3. Set a standard for project performance monitoring and reporting. Standard performance reporting across all projects enables decision makers to take early corrective action based on real-time metrics indicating deviation from planned cost and schedule objectives. Poor performance from contractors and suppliers is a leading cause of project failure

4. Enforce project and financial governance processes through configurable workflow for change requests and financial approvals. Ensure the auditability of actions taken by project team members and tracking of contractual deliverables;

5. Implement a formal project scope and contract change management processes. Align the interim contract payments with a formal schedule of values under the contract terms and conditions. Only make payments for work actually completed and certified;

6. Enable electronic correspondence management, document tracking, document control and electronic document handover across all project team members, city operating divisions and external stakeholders. Create a full electronic record of the project to ensure proper project hand-over, close-out and dispute resolution support;

7. Leverage transactional control data in the City’s ERP to enable informed cost and cash-flow management and forecasting. Integrating the Oracle Primavera Smart City Project Solution with the City’s ERP solution will promote operational efficiency and financial data integrity.

8. Implement a formal program and project risk management platform, integrated with the cost and schedule management of the project. Effective program and project risk management is one of the most under-estimated forward looking management tools within the overall project governance framework;

9. Establish a collaborative environment between the city project owner’s team, engineers, consultants, main contractors and sub-contractors. Clear and timely communication between team members reduce project schedule delays due to delayed decisions caused by slow communications;

10. Implement a formal post contract award management environment in support of the chosen contract format. This will facilitate contracts administration, contract change management, interim payment certification, partial and full contract deliverables handover and acceptance. Ensuring compliance with the conditions of the contracts between the city and the contractor will reduce the project cost growth due to uncontrolled contract changes. Preventing litigation related to contested contract changes is an effective manner to contain cost growth and wasteful expenditure on a project

 

Easy to deploy

In todays fast passed city environment the deployment of integrated management systems need to provide the agility the Smart City Transformation Roadmap demands. Unfortunately city IT managers often face challenges to deploy any form of integrated management systems to stakeholders outside of the city administration. In part, this may be due to cost consideration, the city’s procurement policies or data security considerations.

The Oracle Primavera Smart City Projects Solution is a fully web based solution which can be deployed as a Software-as-a-Services (SaaS) solution from Oracle or as an on-premise solution in the city’s own IT environment. The Oracle Primavera solution is designed for the extended enterprise. Cost effective licencing models put the solution within reach of all project stakeholders. The user access and security model is designed to enable deployment outside of only the city administration, allowing the operational efficiencies of a truly integrated project delivery platform across the city and its stakeholders.

The Oracle Primavera solution supports the use of mobile devises to facilitate a productive workforce across the city. Leveraging the city’s communication networks allow project team members and stakeholders to access project planning and contract information, status activities and contracts, and access reports and dashboards while on the go from their mobile devices.

 

1PPM for Intermodal Transportation & Infrastructure Organizations: Select, Manage and Maintain Transformative Projects. Aberdeen Group, March 2015

 

Monday Aug 26, 2013

NEW! Oracle's Enterprise Project Portfolio Management (EPPM) Webcast Center

We have just launched Oracle's new EPPM Webcast Center, a single console where you can search and watch all EPPM related OnDemand webcasts and register to attend upcoming live webcasts.

These webcasts provide updates on new product features, best practices, customer case studies and more.

Simply log-on to the webcast center where you can filter by products and industries that you are interested in.

Click here to visit the webcast center now!

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