IT Portfolio & Resource Manager, Bonfiglioli
Bonfiglioli is a worldwide designer, manufacturer and distributor of a complete range of gear motors, drive systems, planetary gearboxes and inverters, which satisfy the most challenging and demanding needs in industrial automation, mobile machinery and renewable energy. The firm, based in Bologna, Italy, has three main business units—Discrete Manufacturing & Process Industries, Mechatronic & Motion Systems and Mobility & Wind Industries-and operates 21 branches, 14 production facilities, a network of 550 distributors and more than 3,700 employees.
Bonfiglioli has seen record growth for the past three years and expects to continue that expansion for the foreseeable future. The firm has continued to build on its successes in markets beyond Europe, including China, India and the USA. As a global leader in planetary gear drive technology, Bonfiglioli has doubled revenues in these markets for the last two years.
With continual product innovation and new production operations based on Industry 4.0 best practices, Bonfiglioli needed a more efficient and collaborative way to manage the hundreds of IT and R&D projects underway at any given moment. “While our headquarters is in Italy, less than 50% of our employees are based here,” explains Bonfiglioli IT portfolio and resource manager Daniela Liparesi. “We are in 15 countries. We needed a cloud-based project and portfolio management (PPM) solution that would allow greater collaboration and provide a centralized view of available resources and project status.”
Liparesi and her team, with support from the highest levels of management, spent weeks collecting key user requirements and then hired a third-party consultant to review and evaluate available PPM solutions. The consultant provide three options—MS Project, Project Objects, and Clarizen.
“We decided that Clarizen was the Salesforce.com of PPM solutions,” says Liparesi. “We have been very happy with SF.com and that helped make our adoption of Clarizen just as easy. We considered Project Objects because it has a wide user base in Italy; however, the attractiveness of the Clarizen user interface and the availability of a larger number of integrations was important to us.”
Bonfiglioli also engaged with Horsa Plan, a division of Horsa Group, as their consultancy partner for system implementation.
With over a decade of Project & Portfolio Management expertise and knowledge of industry best practices, Horsa Plan supported Bonfiglioli’s Clarizen implementation from start-finish, configuring the system according to business requirements, while taking into account the different needs of the various functions involved.
Bonfiglioli & Horsa jointly decided to split up the implementation in waves, each of which was further divided into phases: starting from business processes and requirement analysis, proceeding with platform configuration, and ending with user training and support.
Clarizen’s functional completeness and friendly user interface were keys in providing a smooth rollout of the system in early 2018 across IT and R&D project planners in Italy, Germany and India. “The first time I saw the Clarizen Roadmap View during a monthly IT meeting it made me really happy,” notes Liparesi. “It’s so intuitive and complete from a user configuration perspective. I’ve heard from users that they love to be able to customize their interface to meet their own preferences—to adapt it to their way of working.”
Today, Clarizen is used extensively across Bonfiglioli’s IT and R&D organization in Italy, Germany and, increasingly, in India. More than 260 users actively use the system to monitor deadlines, provide customer-facing PowerPoint slides with up-to-the-minute project status details, and use project Widgets to share dynamic information with customers that has increased and improved the quality of collaboration.
There are a number of key executives across the organization who need regular status reports on individual projects and entire project portfolios. In the past, using mostly manual processes, staff spent hours each week attempting to collect and compile current project information in order to produce these reports.
Working with Horsa Plan helped Bonfiglioli to implement Clarizen taking into consideration both business requirement and widely spread best practices in the PPM landscape. This led to the completion of important objectives including the creation of a single source of truth for their project portfolio, thereby increasing visibility into project status’, saving time on low value-added activities and improving the productivity of individual contributors. After facilitating the Clarizen implementation in different areas, Horsa’s role continues in providing key support to users, collecting feedback and supporting the company evolving the usage of the solution, for example by creating advanced reporting & dashboards and by enabling new features released.
“I am personally saving the equivalent of 12 days per year by not having to spend up to one day per month chasing the latest project updates and other information,” Liparesi emphasizes. “With Clarizen, project information is continuously updated so that anytime I need to show someone a project status, I simply show them the Clarizen dashboard with KPIs shown and can send regular reports with up-to-the-minute accuracy.”
She adds: “You must develop the right mentality and culture across your organization for any major solution to succeed. The same has been true with Clarizen. It’s important to understand the roles and needs of managers and team members and cover those needs within the tool. We have invested significant time and energy to promote Clarizen adoption.
Headquarters in Bologna, Italy, Plants and Branches in 22 countries on 5 continents
MS Project, spreadsheets, Biquanda, Hi Plan