Project Management for Communications Services

Axia NetMedia

"Project Insight has helped us manage all of the projects related to the system upgrade program… One of the main reasons we selected Project Insight is because we felt that their customer support is superior to all the other companies that we were evaluating."
- Director of Costing and Special Projects

Main Challenges

Prior to Project Insight, the Project Management Office (PMO) relied on Microsoft Project desktop, Excel and Word to manage projects and project-related documents. There was also a separate in-house tool to perform any tracking, filing, costing, and creating customized reports. Because of these different systems, there was no way to view all project schedules from one place. It was also difficult to locate various documents related to multiple projects.

  • Experienced difficulty tracking multiple project schedules as they were managed in Microsoft Project desktop, a single-user application
  • Lacked a central location for all team members to access all project documents
  • Required a way to standardize projects for rapid re-use

The company needed a more standardized process and a simpler way to initiate similar projects without having to reinvent the wheel. Moreover, there wasn't a way to give new team members or junior project managers the ability to look back at the history and learn.

Why Project Insight

When the Project Management Office (PMO) decided to search for web-based project management software, they agreed to evaluate only best-of-breed software solutions. The PMO's director rounded up his team and, after analyzing the various options, determined Project Insight was the best application for managing large projects.

  • Offers a web-based solution that can be accessed from any location via any web browser
  • Provides full visibility into all project schedules from one place
  • Supplies project templates to help standardize processes and initiate projects with ease
  • Allows custom fields for customizing project software to fit an organization's business process
  • Provides various reports that can be customized to present preferred information
  • Includes the ability to share selective information with clients and subcontractors

Being web based was one of the main reasons Project Insight was selected. Its cloud-based software allows team members to access, view and update projects and tasks from any browser, anywhere, at any time. Previously, project managers were repeatedly rebuilding similar projects. "The trouble with performing this in an Excel or Word document is you don't reuse intellectual capital," the director explains. "Now I'm using Project Insight as a way to create a repository for intellectual capital so new staff or junior project managers can go back and look at what we've previously done. This eliminates the need to reinvent what is already being used."

In addition, Project Insight allows teams to create and build project templates to help standardize their business processes. An unexpected benefit was Project Insight's document management features' ability to create a centralized archive. Now project documents, data and plans have a single location where they can be easily searched and reused. The differentiator that set Project Insight apart from other solutions, however, is its ability to easily create a great number of custom fields within the project software. The team was impressed with how easy it is to create custom fields, forms and reports. Axia's director of costing and special projects uses this capability to develop customized reports for each team and shares them accordingly. This allows team members, with just a couple of clicks, to run reports with information that is pertinent to them. Custom fields created to fit Axia's business process on a task level are included in these reports.

The Results

Project Insight Edition

  • Full visibility of project schedules
  • Centralized document and data repository for any project assets or file
  • Customized project software with fields relevant to the organization's projects and business process
  • Ability to share pertinent information with third-party customers and subcontractors using permissions

Axia uses Project Insight project management software for large projects, bids and service development. The software's web-based capability allows project managers to access all project schedules in one place from any web browser; they no longer have to track down the latest version of the project schedule, which improves productivity. Axia utilizes custom forms and custom fields to their fullest capabilities. In addition to using project templates to instill a standardized process, the director has created custom fields containing project management and industry-specific acronyms, which are included in reports, run on a weekly or as-required basis. Project Insight has also proven to be a huge time saver when it comes to weekly meetings. Network engineers currently update all essential information within the project software prior to weekly meetings. Because all information is ready and up to date, meetings that used to be one hour long have been reduced to fifteen minutes.

Recently, Axia had to review and comment on over 200 contractor documents within a one-week window. The traditional method had consisted of passing a spreadsheet around to collect comments. Now, by using a custom form in Project Insight, various subject matter experts concurrently input their findings and generate real-time reports as the work proceeds. As the director explains: "By enabling Project Insight's comment log option, Axia was able to remove the effort of having to manually record who made each comment and when. This feature makes it easier to see the complete history of a discussion." When Axia brings fiber optics into residential homes, they work closely with the customer and other third-party subcontractors. The director has leveraged the powerful permissions available in Project Insight to allow customers access to only their project and subcontractors as well as the ability to see only a subset of the project. "Being able to provide various users with different privileges and permissions has been great for integrating people outside of our organization too," the director shared.