Deltek has just released Acumen Touchstone which is a great tool for automating the schedule submission process. Deltek Acumen Touchstone provides a web portal for the automated collection, scoring and benchmarking of project schedules. It’s central repository stores and evaluates schedules including updates and is able to automate reviews and approvals.
Deltek Acumen Touchstone takes submitted schedules and then automatically processes them to make sure they adhere to your schedule quality criteria and standards. These criteria and standards can be defined by your organization and are all under your control. Any submitted schedule that does not meet these standards and score threshold, is automatically returned to the submitter with details as to why it has been rejected.
This is a great concept, as many man hours are spent reviewing schedules and if rejected, re-reviewing them again (and again). This cycle frees up this effort, drives consistency while moving the responsibility for submitting a quality schedule to where it belongs…the contractor, vendor, internal supplier, etc.
Submissions are accepted or rejected based on client threshold scores and metrics. And, all submissions receive details on what is needed to fix any quality issues thus improving turnaround time.
You can create and customize both quantitative and qualitative metrics to suit different types of projects. In other words, different types of projects may require different sets of metrics.
Acumen Touchstone is web based and is installed on customer premises, although Deltek may offer its own hosting as another option in the future. It uses a technology that Deltek calls Project Intelligence Cloud (PIC) and this is the first Deltek product to use PIC. In the future, Deltek does plan to create or enhance existing products based on PIC to include cost, schedule, risk management, analytics and workflow.
Deltek Acumen Touchstone Benefits
Automation – Receiving and reviewing many schedules, whether it’s weekly or monthly, is a time-consuming task. Acumen Touchstone automates this process and analyzes each schedule based on your metrics and standards. Each schedule is saved in your database along with the scoring report and essential information including the current finish date, project percent complete and cost.
If a schedule does not meet your standards, the submitter is notified via email as to the score and any deficiencies that need correcting. The submitter can then correct the deficiencies and resubmit. This cycle can be repeated as many times as necessary and is all fully automated.
Configuration Management – You always want to be working with the latest and official version of a schedule. Acumen Touchstone stores every schedule by period. At any point in time, you can see the latest version, view prior versions and can download any of these snapshots.
Visibility – Acumen Touchstone allows you to define each project’s reporting periods and upload window for schedule submissions. You can see what schedules are missing, what have been approved or rejected. This saves a considerable amount of time and allows you to be more proactive.
Deltek Acumen Touchstone automates the schedule submission process, all while adhering to your organization’s best practices and quality standards. In short, Acumen Touchstone can save an organization massive amount of time, drive consistency and simplify the whole process. Who doesn’t want that!