#AmazingPM, ALLinPPM, News, Partnership, PPM, Project for the web, project management, Project Online, work management

Looking back at 2019… and ahead to 2020

2019 was a great year for Innovative-e and its partners! Join us for a walk down memory lane to revisit the most memorable events and happenings of last year!

Innovative-e was selected as a finalist in the Microsoft 2019 Partner of the Year Award for our work in Project and Portfolio Management. This honor recognized Innovative-e for providing outstanding solutions and services in Project & Portfolio Management (PPM).

See what Mike Taylor, President and CEO of Innovative-e, had to say when we were named as a Partner of the Year finalist.

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Innovative-e renewed its partnership with Microsoft in early December. We have been a Microsoft Gold partner for more than a decade and are certified in the following areas:

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These partnership levels highlight the strengths we bring to our customers and partners. Maintaining Gold or Silver partnership with Microsoft requires expertise in the competency areas, certification of our SMEs and compliance with the high standards to which Microsoft holds its partners.

As a key Microsoft Partner, Innovative-e provided strong support and a robust thought leadership role when Microsoft rolled out its major update to Project in October 2019, unveiling Project for the Web to bring better work management to pro project managers as well as team members whose work entails everyday, ad hoc project management.

At Innovative-e, we believe in #PMforALL, whether you’re a Contract Manager, HR Professional, or you fill another job role in which a robust, easy-to-use project management tool will boost your productivity and efficiency – even if you’re not a formal project manager.

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https://youtu.be/5hJMzf0qD_U

If you haven’t seen how flexible and easy to work with Project for the web is yet, we’d be happy to sit down with you and show you around the tool. Drop us a note and we’ll sync up to give you a demo!

You may have noticed, when browsing our ever-growing library of knowledge pieces, a fresh face.

mike and bryan

The gentleman on the right is Bryan Quick, our Director of Sales. Bryan spent years with Microsoft as a Solution Sales Professional and is now leveraging his expertise in Microsoft’s work management suite to  improve our customers’ day-to-day work life with increased visibility, agility and control. We’re thrilled to have Bryan sharing his knowledge and positive energy with the Innovative-e team!

Microsoft isn’t the only partner we’ve worked closely with during 2019. We’ve partnered with edison365 for years and have watched them grow their suite of tools, built to work seamlessly with Office365. In 2019, edison365 announced major upgrades to:

We helped our customer, The Guthrie Clinic, implement all three edison365 products in 2019, and enabled them to achieve success with an end-to-end solution that took Guthrie from idea conception to project execution:

“We had a pretty good foundation in place for project management and we were looking to take it to the next level. Microsoft Project Online got us there and now, with edison365ideas, businesscase, and projects added on, I’m in love! – Gail Strausser, Application Manager, The Guthrie Clinic

We also produced several webinars and other knowledge pieces with edison365 during 2019, the better to show you these fantastic tools that make it easier for you to work smarter, not harder.

The edison365 folks also launched a great new podcast, Innovation Brew, late in 2019. We’re so grateful to be partnered with Ivan Lloyd, Tad Haas, and the other marvelous members of the edison365 team! Thank you for a marvelous 2019 – we look forward to even greater successes in the coming year!

We had a great year with one of our other partners, Bravo Consulting Group, which works largely with government customers to leverage Microsoft products for strategic, technology-enabled innovative solutions. While we do a lot of behind-the-scenes work with Bravo to enable our customers (and theirs!) with work management solutions that improve collaboration, effectiveness and visibility, one of our most popular joint ventures was a webinar, “All in – 3 Steps to Digital Transformation. It’s win/win!” that was such a hit that we did it again a few weeks later. Shout-out to Gino Digregori and his team for years of successful partnership in bringing digital transformation and cloud services to our customers! 2019 was amazing, and we think 2020 will be even better!

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Looking forward

Sure, we packed in a lot of success with our partners and customers in 2019, but we’re not stopping there!

Innovative-e is in the process of developing an expanded selection of educational offerings for 2020, and broadening our offerings with DIY-style content to help you beef up what you can do on your own with the expansive work management tools from partners like Microsoft and edison365. We’re also deepening our offerings for project and portfolio managers; for years, we’ve provided solution-specific training to our customers, but we’re adding PM skills training and other work management-related courses to our curriculum.

We’ve already loaded up our editorial calendar to keep bringing you (free!) thoughtful and practical content in 2020 to help you improve your work life with more effective work management practices and tools. We and our partners like edison365 and Bravo Consulting Group are eager to share new e-books, whitepapers, articles and infographics in the coming year, so keep an eye on our blog, our YouTube channel, and our website for more knowledge pieces. Don’t forget to follow us on LinkedIn, Twitter, and Facebook – and subscribe to our newsletter! –  so you can see when we or our partners drop info that will make work management easier for you no matter your job role.

If your 2019 was as good as ours was, then you’ve had a very good year, indeed! We’re looking forward to an even more successful 2020, and we’re glad to have our partners – and you! – with us for the coming new year!

#AmazingPM, project management, Project Online, PS+

Project Raise Slow Ride – Preparing to Do the Thing

slow ride prepIn our last several Project Raise Slow Ride videos, Mike has  pretty meticulously planned the raising of Slow Ride from the water. Good planning, risk assessment and mitigation, and preparation for a project are all critical to managing a successful project.

Time is of the essence, though – being submerged for so long is damaging Slow Ride, and the longer it takes to pull her out, the worse the damage will get. After putting together a solid plan, it’s time to actually do the thing.

In our next video in this series, Mike talks a little bit about the prepwork for actually pumping the water out of Slow Ride. Notice in the video that Mike pulls up Microsoft Project on his phone to make some tweaks to the project on the go. With mobile access to Microsoft Project, you can manage projects about a boat, near a boat, or on a boat!

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The moment of truth is nearly upon us – will Mike be able to save Slow Ride? Stay tuned to see if he’s able to get the boat out of the water, and if he’s able to get the water out of the boat.

Playing catch-up? Here are the other videos:

 

#AmazingPM, project management, Project Online, PS+

Project Raising Slow Ride – Risks, Mitigation, and Simulation

In our last installment of “Project Raise Slow Ride,” Mike began planning the whole thing out in Microsoft Project, with PS+ overlaying even more functionality to the already robust capabilities of Project.

One of the biggest pieces in planning a big project is the risk assessment. Once you determine what the potential risks are, you need to figure out how to mitigate them. In our latest video, Mike discusses some of the risks of raising the boat out of the water, and how to mitigate those risks. In the case of raising Slow Ride, electrical shock is a very real consideration, so Mike talks about some of the specific measures he’s taking to ensure nobody gets hurt.

Another risk of raising the boat is that, when Mike pumps the water out of the boat, the boat could roll over in the water, which, because Slow Ride is a pretty big boat, would be disastrous.

slow ride simMike runs a highly detailed (and really cool) simulation of how he thinks the boat sank, and then simulates the pumping process to see how the boat is likely to behave once the water is being pumped out of it. Once Mike has projected how he thinks the boat will move when the water is being pumped out of it, he’s able to mitigate the risk of the boat rolling over  in the real world with measures that will stabilize it as he pumps.

Thorough and specific planning for the likeliest risks in any given project is essential, and knowing exactly how you’re going to minimize or address those risks is critical to the success of the overall project.

Will all this planning help Mike get Slow Ride out of the water? Keep watching to find out!

Though attention has shifted to Puerto Rico’s damage from Hurricane Maria, folks in Texas and Florida are also still in the recovery process from this brutal hurricane season. Here are some resources if you’d like to help.

#AmazingPM, project management, Project Online, PS+

Using Microsoft Project & PS+ to Plan “Project Raising Slow Ride”

You’ve seen the boat and you’ve seen the whiteboard.  Now it’s time to crunch some numbers and leverage Microsoft Project and PS+ to plan at a whole-project (but still granular) level. Good planning is critical in making a project successful!

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In this video, Mike creates “Project Raise Slow Ride” using Microsoft Project and PS+ (soon to be renamed Edison365 Projects, with added functionality to help you see your project through from ideation through execution).

The start of the video may look familiar to you: creating a new project in Microsoft Project. But then Mike demos some super-neat stuff that PS+ can do in tandem with Microsoft Project to help assess project risks and escalate them to issues with one easy click.

Mike also shows off the project benefits page – it’s important to know the WHY of the project you’re mounting to help you stay focused on what matters through the course of the project.

With all this planning, will Mike be able to raise Slow Ride? Stay tuned…

#AmazingPM, project management, Project Online, PS+

Project “Raise Slow Ride” – The Whiteboard Session

In our last post, following the submersion of houseboat Slow Ride during Hurricane Irma, we wondered if project management can raise a boat. The next step after wondering if something can be done?

Planning how it should be done.

In this installment of Project “Raise Slow Ride,” Mike sciences his way to some estimates for pumping out the water that has infiltrated Slow Ride and plans how to raise the boat above the waterline. Watch the short video of the whiteboard session here.

Stay tuned to find out if applying project management manages to get Slow Ride out of the drink…

raise slow ride whiteboard

#AmazingPM, project management, Project Online, PS+

Can project management raise a boat?

irmaWhen Hurricane Irma set its sights on Florida, the Innovative-e team was on high-alert, since Innovative-e President Mike Taylor lives on the east coast of Florida. Mike and his family weathered the storm – though not without some difficulties, like days without running water – but the family houseboat, Slow Ride, didn’t fare so well.

Because Irma ravaged pretty much the whole of Florida, pro boat salvagers are, as you can imagine, a little busy these days. But if Slow Ride or any of her parts are to be saved, she has to be raised out of the water soon. Mike decided that he’ll try to raise the boat himself instead of waiting for the schedules of professional salvagers to clear weeks from now.

slow ride.pngMike is tackling this boat salvaging project as, well, a project. He’s using Microsoft Project and PS+ to help him plan, assess the risks and identify issues, establish and maintain a budget, track his resources, and otherwise manage this project as he would manage a work project from behind his desk.

Will it work?

We don’t know yet. This project is still in process. Follow along  in this video series as Mike documents his attempt to save Slow Ride.

Want to help victims of Hurricane Irma, many of whom lost far more than a boat? Here are some resources:

 

#AmazingPM, Microsoft news, News, PPM, project management, Project Online

30K Projects!

Innovative-e, a Microsoft partner with a Gold PPM competency, is always on the lookout for ways to make #AmazingPM even more amazing for our customers. Microsoft is continually improving, too. Recently, Microsoft announced some exciting improvements to Project Online.

30K projects Proj Online

  • Project Online was previously limited to 5,000 projects – that max has now been raised 6x to 30,000 projects!
  • Additionally, project sites were previously capped at 2,000. That limit has also been bumped to 30,000, and will scale on a 1:1 basis with the number of projects in the PWA.
  • More fine-tuned control over where project sites can be provisioned is now available. For example, different site collections can be specified for different EPTs so that project sites can be logically segregated.
  • Some OData performance enhancements have been made, which should improve SSIS pulls.

Learn more about these enhancements to Project Online at the Project Online blog, here.