The latest major version of Project Portfolio Office’s (PPO) web-base online project management solution is certain to please current users and win an even greater customer base.
“As is Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) custom, PPO users receive frequent software updates, automatically and for free with no need to reconfigure or reimplement each version,” says Estie van der Watt, support manager at Post Vision Technology. “In the case of PPO, these include new major version releases containing multiple user enhancements as well as regular, smaller technical improvements. The most recent enhancements are substantial and add considerable user-friendliness to PPO”.
“Based on user requests, the enhancements to the software are very exciting as they bring many new benefits to existing customers and also move previous backend functionality to the frontend, giving customers greater control of the project management solution.”
One such upgrade is an enhanced search functionality allowing users not only to search within a single entity, such as issues or risks, but also to search the whole of PPO. Users also have the ability to specify a timeframe for their search in order to narrow the search down to items updated in the last two days, the last week or the previous month. Another improvement that should greatly affect usability is the facility to manage subscriptions from within their PPO instance instead of from the PPO website.
“A large change is the deployment on an improved support module, which should be welcomed by users. The support module has now been integrated into the software and can be accessed from the PPO instance. New functionality will allows users to view and track their support calls, and see to whom it has been assigned. Furthermore, users can propose enhancements to functionalities and vote on other users’ proposals for consideration in future PPO enhancements. This encourages continuous improvement of the solution,” explains Van der Watt. “Users can also access the FAQ portal from the support module and will be able to track their enhancements as they are approved and prioritised for development.”
Other highlights include the ability for users to further configure and customise their home page through filters and entities. “The home page filters functionality was not available previously, but we realised that customers preferred to have rights to select the views that best suited their needs. To make this functionality easier, we created filters that can easily be switched on and off – such as hiding all projects on hold, and also included a ‘shared filters’ functionality so that administrators can easily publish preferred views and filters,” she explains.
The software also boasts an additional three custom entities, which can be used for items such as benefit tracking, knowledge management and decision logs, bringing the total to six, which will greatly benefit users.
Clients will especially appreciate the newest PPO ability to e-mail documents to PPO, resulting in the document being automatically uploaded onto PPO. “This saves time and effort for the user,” says Van der Watt.
In addition, users can now import their project plans from Excel – an improvement that is sure to be welcomed by many.
“There are many more enhancements and we will be sending our users communiqués to explain and draw attention to all the improvements so that they are not only aware of these but feel at ease with the software. The software upgrade is scheduled for Monday, 5 December 2011 at 21:00,” says Van der Watt.