Case Study: Utilizing roadmaps to reduce data loss

Industry: Multinational Manufacture
Company Size: 200,000+ Employees

The Customer

In 2021, this large publicly traded multinational manufacturing company sold over 25 million units, processed sales of over 100 million, and employed over 200,000 people. The organization includes over 400 affiliated companies that support the development, manufacturing, and sales of motorized products such as vehicles, generators, lawn maintenance equipment, boat engines, and aircraft.

The Challenge

While this organization had been thriving for over 70 years, much of its project budgeting data was still being held in Excel. Many resource hours were utilized to manage the spreadsheets, budgeting reports, and updates. They were also struggling with quality issues since many people were handling the data, and the data was not dynamic. If changes were made on one spreadsheet, those changes had to be communicated to the other team members. Additionally, they were challenged with managing simple errors such as a typo that would render a report incorrect.

These issues created a frantic work environment where people were continually worried about gathering the pertinent data required to meet deadlines.

The Solution

With the assistance of Rego experts, the company created a list of objectives and action items to reach those goals. The objectives were designed to help the organization move towards “portfolio” thinking, utilizing the roadmaps for fiscal planning, and shifting from “project” thinking to focusing on value. The solution included changes in how they used business solutions and how they changed their way of thinking, training, and planning.

The plan included,

  • Changing the way people thought: Efforts were initially centered around getting the teams to evolve from project or product thinking to “portfolio thinking.” After this concept was grasped, the teams evolved into roadmapping using Clarity.
  • Creating a roadmap for the fiscal year: Once the first roadmap was created, the team stretched to planning three years ahead.
  • Focusing on value: Utilizing newly discovered data and roadmaps, the organization focused on value streams and providing customer value over “product” based goals.
  • Monthly topic-based training: The organization hosts monthly recorded PMO training sessions. The training sessions are posted for sharing and rewatching.
  • Train-the-trainer training: To keep everyone up to date on new practices and to support onboarding, they created a train-the-trainer program.
  • Creating a group of advocates: The advocates are selected from five divisions to improve engagement and support for new protocols.
  • Scheduling of quarterly, four-week forecasting events: To take advantage of the decreased time required for creating reports and decision-making, they added additional applicable training sessions during the forecasting event.

The Benefits

The most impactful benefits resulted from moving annual and quarterly budgeting out of Excel and into Clarity Roadmaps. This shift instantly improved accuracy and decreased the resource hours required to maintain data and create reports. In the past, it took many hours to keep data updated. After full implementation, people could update data in real-time and see their reports change immediately, even live within a meeting.

Other improvements included,

  • Accountability across the teams: Using Clarity, development hours and efforts are tracked, plus leadership efforts can be gauged and reported.
  • Increased accuracy: Significant decrease in “user errors” such as typos or information “lost” in email, chat, telephone, or in-person conversations.
  • More time for training: With workloads reduced, they found more time for training and finding ways to improve their usage of Clarity and other business systems.
  • Improved onboarding: Utilizing monthly sessions and onboard training, they found it easier to onboard new hires or those changing roles.
  • Increased time to focus on value: After greatly reducing time spent on maintaining and planning, they shifted their focus to value and improvements.
  • Decreased stress on leadership’s time: With dynamic roadmaps, leaders could focus on value rather than chasing data from multiple sources to create reports and build budgets.
  • Ability to create improved workflow processes: Using out-of-the-box features, they were able to show time-scaled value and demonstrate projected costs as far as three years ahead.
  • Capability of pivoting from Hierarchical Budgeting (divisional silos) to Value Streams (cross silos) as a steppingstone in Project-to-Product planning using Roadmaps.