Why You Should Use Primavera for Project Management
Primavera P6 is an enterprise project management tool used for scheduling and managing the execution of projects.
Widely considered one of the best products out there for ensuring transparent, on-time delivery, Primavera has a long history of supporting large and small projects, programs and portfolios around the world.
However, working with this part of the Oracle suite can feel like a daunting choice if you haven’t used it before. Here are 7 reasons why it’s worth seriously considering using Oracle Primavera P6 for project management.
1: Powerful scheduling
Primavera P6 is a powerful scheduling engine, and in our experience that’s why a lot of companies choose to use it. It is a robust tool designed for prioritizing and planning projects, programs and portfolios, with all the scheduling features you expect.
For example, it has advanced dependency management, the ability to implement organizational breakdown structures and work breakdown structures, resources, activity constraints and of course Gantt charts. Basically, however you need to schedule your work, Primavera will let you manage it.
One thing that is worth noting is that Primavera is predominantly a tool designed for predictive (“waterfall”) projects. While you could incorporate milestones and dates for agile iterations as placeholders, in our experience the tasks related to those activities are most often managed with tools better designed for agile teams.
2: User friendly
Despite the fact that P6 is feature-packed, it is surprisingly easy to use. Yes, there is a learning curve like there is with any new tool. But once you’ve undertaken a short Primavera P6 training course you will quickly understand how to use it.
It helps if you already have a basic understanding of project management principles like the work breakdown structure, risk management, change control processes and so on. However, if you attend one of our courses we’ll make sure you leave the classroom with a full understanding of those concepts too.
We find that even students who were initially daunted by the plethora of features and options within Primavera leave our classes knowing how to do their job effectively.
3: Compliant solution
If you work in government projects or in a public sector role, it is likely that you will have guidance criteria to meet. Primavera ticks all the boxes for being a compliant solution because it is pretty much industry standard on large-scale construction, engineering, oil and gas, defense and more. Save yourself time and headaches by using a tool that is designed from the ground up to meet the needs of complex projects and contracts.
If your client expects you to use earned value management techniques on your project, then a tool like Primavera will help you meet those expectations. It can interface seamlessly with your other enterprise tools to provide the right reports and governance.
4: Granular access permission
There are a lot of features, options and settings within the Primavera modules, so it’s important to get permissions set up accurately. That really helps with avoiding overwhelm for users and making sure they can focus on using the features that are most relevant for their own work.
You will need someone who can manage the system and act in an administration role. They will be responsible for ensuring user accounts are created and managed, and that individuals have access to the right role profiles.
5: Modelling and forecasting
Keeping a record of what was planned and delivered is important, but what about forecasting future performance? Earned value management will provide the data for that, but Primavera has some other built-in features that allow you to model projects.
For example, use the waterline in a scorecard as a visual modelling tool to apply a constraining limit and then rank projects into two groups. The workflow engine that comes with P6 EPPM enables business process modelling. All these ‘extras’ help create a strategic forecast for the portfolio.
6: Risk management
Primavera P6 goes beyond scheduling as it also has a range of other features including risk management. Create your project risk register directly in Primavera. Then carry out risk analysis and set up your risk response plans. Activities can link to the project schedule so no task is overlooked. You can even assign a risk to an activity, which helps raise visibility about the potential impact of a task.
When risks are managed in such an integral way to the rest of the work, it’s easier to see what needs to be done to manage them and who is responsible.
7: Better visibility
One of the main reasons why project teams choose Primavera P6 is because it improves transparency and visibility of project data. Reports come out of the box. You can generate reports from within your web browser or export data to other tools for more detailed analysis, for example, earned value reporting.
We know that stakeholders often won’t proactively log in to a system to check a real-time dashboard for project progress. Primavera can create reports to a schedule of your choice and email them to the right people. Automating this data sharing can make it a lot easier to work with customers and show that you are providing transparent project data.
Overall, Primavera P6 provides plenty of benefits for project sponsors, teams and clients. It’s a fully-featured, professional tool that is designed with the user in mind. We’ve been helping organizations like yours get the best out of Primavera since 1999. If you’re ready to make the jump to using this next-level tool, get in touch to see how we can help you set up Primavera in the right way for your organization.