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how is data analysis transforming project control?

Project Controls
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In project management, project planning and control are two key steps in structuring processes, allocating tasks and monitoring effectively. Today, it is possible to streamline these processes and thus optimise project performance thanks to data analysis and Business Intelligence (BI).

Data is a precious resource which, when properly analysed, can reveal important information about a project’s lifecycle, enabling you to take full control of its development and make informed decisions.

In this article, we will look at how Business Intelligence, along with its tools and methods, enable this data to be analysed in a concrete manner to optimise project management.

Back to project control

Project control starts with project planning. During this first stage, the objectives, key stages and resources are defined by the project manager in order to comply with the three constraints formed by the Golden Triangle (deadlines, cost and scope). Project control comes into the next phase, right through to the end of the project and handover of the deliverables. It involves constantly analysing each stage of the project to ensure that it is moving in the right direction and achieving its objectives.

The advantages of project control are:

  • Monitor the project effectively: track the status and progress of the project at all times.
  • Optimise resource management: effectively manage time, money and staff to maximise profits.
  • Detect problems early: identify cost and time variances at an early stage so that corrective action can be taken swiftly.
  • Ensure project quality: maintain a high level of quality by monitoring and complying with standards.
  • Be transparent with stakeholders: keep stakeholders informed to build trust and satisfaction.
  • Support decision-making: provide the data needed to make strategic decisions, such as expanding projects or allocating resources.

Project control is now made easier by the integration of Business Intelligence. This process uses tools for reporting accurate data regarding the status of the project at time T, and above all facilitating the risk management process. Now we will take a look at what this data is and how it is analysed.

Analysis of key indicators

There are several key indicators relating to project control that can be analysed to reveal valuable information about the progress of the project. To make informed decisions, and if necessary take corrective action, the project manager and their team will be able to take advantage of these different sets of data:

  • The cost variance : i.e. the difference between the budget initially planned and that actually spent at time T.
  • The schedule variance: i.e. the difference between the initially planned schedule and the actual schedule at time T.
  • Remaining activities: i.e. the tasks still to be carried out in relation to the planned work. This gives a concrete idea of the progress of the project and the remaining workload.
  • Use of resources: these can be human or material, and their level of use enables us to analyse whether one of them is perhaps overburdened and slowing down the project, or whether, on the contrary, it could better employed to improve performance.
  • Stakeholder satisfaction: stakeholder satisfaction is another important key indicator of whether the project is on track. If the stakeholders are unhappy, the manager will have to readjust the project to ensure that it achieves its objectives.

Tools used to analyse the data

Business Intelligence makes use of project management software such as Microsoft Project or Oracle Primavera P6consisting of numerous tools that facilitate the analysis of key indicators.
The various project management tools enable data to be viewed and analysed in real time so that informed decisions can be taken swiftly. They improve risk management and promote predictive analysis to detect opportunities as well as problems. They are therefore of particular use in today’s projects, which are becoming increasingly complex and evolving in constantly changing environments.

These tools include:

The project dashboard

The project dashboard is an essential project control element. It provides an overview of the project’s progress at a glance and reflects the most important key data, namely milestones, task progress, and deviations from costs and deadlines. They offer a wide variety of key performance indicators (KPIs) for monitoring and evaluating project performance.

The project portfolio

The project portfolio gives a quick overview of the progress of all your projects, enabling you to analyse which are the most critical and need to be prioritised.

Risk matrix

Risk management, and more specifically the risk matrix, is used to analyse the severity and probability of all the risks identified. This means that corrective action can be taken quickly if any of these risks come to pass.

Resource management

Data analysis makes it possible to bring together different resources and analyse how they are used. The data collected can be used to develop better resource management, in particular by reviewing allocations and acquisition procedures.

Data analysis, a real competitive advantage

Adopting Business Intelligence methods for data analysis offers a host of benefits for organisations. They increase productivity by generating reports, improving process visibility and identifying areas requiring particular attention. They also provide an overview of the project in progress thanks to project management software and dashboards. Operations are streamlined by simplifying processes and automating predictive analysis and computer modelling. Business Intelligence represents a major asset for any organisation seeking to optimise its performance and competitiveness in the marketplace in terms of project management.

Choosing PROPRISM to ensure controls of your projects

PROPRISM deploys its expertise in Project Controls to offer you solutions tailored to the management and control of your projects. We have a team of experts capable of improving the quality of your projects, promoting productivity and strategic alignment, as well as reducing costs and ensuring deadlines. PROPRISM operates in the pharmaceutical, marine, construction, engineering, transport and infrastructure, and chemical industries.

Our experts play a key role in the success of your projects. Their experience is employed to ensure that resources are properly allocated and that budget forecasts are adhered to. Using agile methods and project management tools that encourage adaptability and responsiveness to change, they encourage improvement and productivity in project management. PROPRISM also plays an essential role in providing advice and assistance, and supports your teams throughout the project life cycle with ongoing training. We also ensure coordination and motivation throughout the project to guarantee its success. Thanks to our solid expertise and essential teamwork, we can work with you to make your projects successful.

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