Article #023 FOURTEEN Proven Common-Sense Actions to Digital Transform the Managing, Monitoring, Controlling, Evaluating, and Reporting Capital Projects Delivery


Using a Project Management Information System (PMIS) like PMWeb, capital project owners and other entities involved in delivering capital projects can solve many of the challenges that encounter those organizations today as it relates to having the insight to make better and faster-informed decisions while fulfilling the organization’s growing demand for compliance requirements of internal audit, transparency, accountability, governance, and information technology (IT) security. PMWeb is one of the recommended ready-to-use platforms that project-centric organizations can use to manage, monitor, control, evaluate and report on all project management processes that need to be executed during the project life cycle phases, from initiation all the way to project turnover and closeout as well as the preceding processes for strategic planning and succeeding processes for asset management, if needed.

Key Objectives of Digital Transformation for Managing, Monitoring, Controlling, and Evaluating Your Capital Projects Delivery

  • Help the organization make better and faster-informed decisions about their capital projects to achieve their company objectives
  • Standardize project controls across the organization’s project portfolio to enable the delivery of capital projects with confidence
  • Standardize the processes to plan, manage and control project costs, schedules, and risks
  • Automate project collaboration to enforce accountability when it comes to reviewing, approving, and sharing project information
  • Use construction analytics to help the organization harness data to create insights they can act on
  • Make sure projects are delivered in an effective, timely manner that meets the organization’s expectations and standards of excellence
  • Comply with the reporting requirements for Health, Safety, Safety, and Quality (HSEQ) processes
  • Manage project financials including developing a detailed financial control environment, resources, capabilities, and risks
  • Capture lessons learned and use the knowledge gained from the project’s delivery to continuously improve the delivery of capital projects
  • Eliminate the waste in project management processes by enabling the adoption of lean construction management best practices
  • Help the reduce projects’ carbon footprint by enabling a paperless project environment
  • Comply with the growing demand for transparency and governance by managing project management processes at the needed granular level
  • Comply with the growing compliance requirement for data protection and cyber security

Understanding the Common Sense to Make Better and Faster Informed Decisions

Trust-Worthy Auditable Data. PMWeb is a transactional application for which it will provide a single 100% web-enabled secured platform to capture and gather the data from the different project management processes needed to be performed across the complete project life cycle phases. This will ensure that the captured everyday project data is reliable, relevant, valid, accurate, legible, and complete. The data will be captured at the granular level needed by internal auditors to verify any project-related transaction.

Real-Time Information. PMWeb automatically generates registers and logs across the complete projects’ portfolio to provide real-time information for each project management process managed in PMWeb. Different layouts and reports can be created to display the needed information by each stakeholder in the desired form and format.

360-Degree Knowledge. For each process, PMWeb will enable automating the process by providing the input form, attaching all supportive documents and links to relevant records and emails, workflow to automate the steps from submitting, reviewing, and approving the process, and the output form to formally communicate the process and real-time log of captured information for each process. The output form and reports can be saved in a PDF file format so they can be digitally signed and shared.

Insight for Informed Decisions. Decision-makers and other project stakeholders will have access to a real-time single version of the truth of a project or project’s current performance status to give them the insight to make faster and better-informed decisions. Those decision-makers will have access to this information anytime, anywhere using any device. The predefined workflows for PMWeb processes make sure that the right stakeholders are aware and notified of all made decisions.

Action #01: Digitize the Generation of Project Output Forms and Registers

For each project management process, PMWeb will enable automating the process by providing the input form to capture needed data, attach all supportive documents and links to relevant records and emails, workflow to automate the steps to submit, review and approve the process, produce the output form to formally communicate the process and generate a real-time log of captured information for each process. Access rights will be assigned to the input forms to restrict access to for creating, editing, or viewing those forms. Access rights can be set for the complete form or specific fields within each form.

PMWeb provides the organization with the tools to design all project communication output forms and reports to exactly match the organization’s branding and reporting requirements. Formulas and other calculated fields can be added to those output forms and reports. The output form and reports can be saved in a PDF file format so they can be digitally signed and shared.

Action #02: Digitize the Capturing of Everyday Projects Data

When it comes to managing capital projects, there are hundreds of forms and reports that are generated using applications such as MS Excel and MS Word. The data captured in those applications will generate thousands of data silos stored at uncontrolled locations where the organization has its projects. Much of this valuable data will be lost or end misplaced when the project comes to completion.

PMWeb comes ready with most of the forms needed in managing capital projects. These include the forms for Request for Information, Meeting Minutes, Safety Incidents, Punch List, Submittal, Transmittal, Timesheet, and Risk Register among others. Also, PMWeb comes ready with the forms needed to manage the project cost including a cost estimate, budget, budget adjustments, commitments, potential change orders, change orders, progress invoices, and funding requests among others.

In addition, the PMWeb custom form builder allows the organization to create any additional form that they need to have in any language they want. For example, those could include Project Charter, Non-Compliance Report, Gate Passes, and Work Permits among many others.

Further, the PMWeb custom form builder allows the organization to create all the checklists that are needed to inspect and enforce formal reviews of the completed works or tasks to be performed. The hundreds of checklists that the organization will create using PMWeb represent the knowledge and experience that the organization has acquired and accumulated over the many years in delivering capital projects.

Since PMWeb is a zero-foot-print application, this means that users with authorized access rights can access PMWeb from any web browser using any mobile device. This will allow the users to complete PMWeb input forms from anywhere with an internet connection such as the construction site. In addition, the user to take and attach pictures to the form as long as the mobile device has a camera. Further, the user can have the option to complete the form by using the “Speech to Text” option where the input text will be typed into the selected form field as the user speaks to the device. Since PMWeb is responsive, the form size will be automatically adjusted to the device screen display size.

Action #03: Digitize the Standardization of Terminology Used in Managing Projects

The advantage of having predefined forms for capturing the everyday project information is that fields can be created for those forms where values need to be selected from a predefined list of values. Some of those fields can be set as required fields for completing the forms while others can be set as optional fields. In addition to the many predefined lists that come ready in PMWeb, PMWeb allows the creation unlimited number of lists that can be specified for each default PMWeb form or newly created form using the PMWeb custom form builder. This will ensure that the organization’s complete projects portfolio uses single terminology when it comes to communicating project information regardless of the project type, size, or location.

Action #04: Digitize the Projects’ Filing Cabinets

All capital projects require maintaining hard copies of all formal communications and contract documents to fulfill the contractual requirements of the executed contracts as well as to comply with the country’s laws should the project be subject to litigation. Most of those documents will be formally turned over to the project owner when the project is closed out. PMWeb Document Management Repository allows mapping the exact project filing structure to enable uploading soft copies’ versions of the same hard copies’ version physically stored in the project’s filing cabinets. Access rights to those folders will be restricted as per the project’s policy. In addition, automated notifications of newly uploaded and downloaded documents among others can be subscribed to. PMWeb document management repository allows creating attributes that are specific for each folder as well as allows document version control.

Action #05: Digitize the Distribution of Project Documents and Records

PMWeb allows having a unique workflow process for every project management process. The workflow uniqueness is a result of the fact that different project individuals could be involved in process review and approval steps, the sequence could differ, the time allotted for each workflow step could differ, the decisions for returning and rejecting workflow could differ and the authorities approval levels could differ depending on the values of each project management process. The workflows can be projected or program specific or could be common to all projects managed by the organization.

By having details of all workflow review and approval tasks for every project management process transaction managed using PMWeb, the organization can generate a consolidated report to monitor and identify delays in reviewing and approving tasks assigned to the project team members. The report will highlight due as well as delayed review and approval tasks which can be grouped by process, and project team members among others. The report can be designed to show delayed workflow tasks in red, while those that are most late in cyan and those that are still within the acceptable time frame are in green.


Action #06: Digitize Email Alerts and Notifications

PMWeb can be set to send automatic email alerts and notifications to PMWeb users as well as non-PMWeb users based on the pre-defined settings. The first of those notifications is the workflow notification where emails will be sent to individuals who are part of a workflow process. Different email notification templates can be designed depending on the workflow action type. Those for example would usually include Submit, Approve, Final Approve, Reject, Return, Withdraw, Resubmit, and Branch. The setup allows also to select what documents should be attached and links to the email notification when it is sent to enable viewing those documents even when there is no access to PMWeb.

In addition, PMWeb allows sending email notifications for overdue workflow actions, reminders, notifications, invitations to collaborate, subscriptions to document management folders, and system events such as delegation start date and end date of responsibilities, permanently replacing users assigned to workflows and summary of events. The setup allows also you to select what documents should be attached and links to the email notification when it is sent.

Action #07: Digitize the Review, Comments, and Markups on Project Drawings

PMWeb comes ready with its redlining and markup tools needed when project drawings are reviewed. PMWeb markup tool allows having multiple review layers for each reviewer as well as linking PMWeb records to the drawing being reviewed. In addition, PMWeb provides integration with Bluebeam Revu to provide the drawings review team with access to the industry-standard application when it comes to reviewing and comparing project drawings. PMWeb allows importing, storing, and reporting on all comments and remarks made by the reviewers using Bluebeam Revu.

Action #08: Digitize Project Information Registers and Logs

For each project management process captured in PMWeb, there will be real-time registers available for PMWeb users. PMWeb allows creating an unlimited number of layouts to present those registers with the option to group, order, and filter the displayed information.

For organizations who are using PMWeb on all of their projects’ portfolios, the information displayed in those registers can be limited to a single project, group of projects, or all projects. This ability to view the information across multiple projects will provide the organization with many benefits including but not limited to the consolidation of values for selected data fields, leveraging knowledge from one project to another, and identifying trends and variances, among others.

Action #09: Digitize the Search for Project Records and Documents

PMWeb allows searching for records captured in a single project or multiple projects that include “words” that the authorized PMWeb user needs to locate all records that could be of relevance. The user can select if the search is to be across all project management processes managed in PMWeb or selected ones. In addition, the user can select the search to be limited to project records that their status is “approved” or any other selection of record status. Selected records can be stored in an electronic issue file to enable the user to review and determine if the record is of relevance or not. The user can create new issue files or append newly found records to an existing search issue file.

In addition, PMWeb allows search for uploaded documents in the document management repository by the file name and document attributes as well as has the option to search the content of the document itself.

Action #10: Digitize Projects Performance Reporting Via Dynamic Dashboards

The information captured and gathered across the complete project’s life cycle phases for each project that the organization is executing, planning to execute, or completing, will become available to be analyzed to predict and constructively influence the time, cost, and other important objectives of the project. This information will also provide the project team and stakeholders with a real-time single version of the truth of the project’s performance status that can be reported on in the desired form and format. The dynamic dashboards will be automatically updated with real-time data to provide a single version of the truth on the projects’ portfolio performance. The user can drill down to the data source to investigate the reported information when needed.

Action #11: Digitize Project Management Processes Interfaces with Third-Party Applications’ Processes

Commonly, project management processes and captured data could be required to manage other processes in other applications especially when it comes to cost-related processes. The opposite is also true where PMWeb might need data from third-party applications. Using PMWeb Integration Manager or PMWeb APIs that support both SOAP and REST protocols, the organization can integrate PMWeb with other third-party applications to eliminate data input redundancy and ensure sharing of the right data in the right format at the right time.

In addition, PMWeb comes ready with other interfaces that are always a requirement when it comes to delivering capital projects. For example, PMWeb comes ready with the interface to import the project schedule and WBS created in Oracle Primavera P6 or MS Project. In addition, PMWeb comes ready with MS Excel import for companies register, cost estimates, submittal logs, and drawings registers among others.

Action #12: Digitize the Localization of the Project Management Information System

Although the English language tends to be the standard communication language for capital projects delivery, nevertheless for many organizations, especially those in the public sector, in the Middle East, Asia, Europe, Africa, and South America have the requirement to have the Project Management Information System (PMIS) use their official language for all or part of the project management processes. Those languages could be Latin or non-Latin languages like Arabic, Mandarin, Thai, Urdu, and Russian among others. PMWeb allows the organization to have the application interface in their desired language as well as have the option to add data in their preferred language.

In addition, PMWeb allows the creation of output forms, reports, and dashboards in Arabic. Similar to other forms, reports, and dashboards, the layout will be fully customizable by the organization using PMWeb. Those reports and dashboards allow drill down for more detailed knowledge of reported information.

Action #13: Digitize the Project Management Information System Knowledge Sharing

Organizations that have committed to digital transforming their capital project delivery, need to provide the users of the Project Management Information System (PMIS) with 24X7 access to the knowledge needed to learn how to use and operate the newly introduced solution. PMWeb provides comprehensive yet easy-to-use online help for all modules for all authorized users. The online help can be customized, if required, to include terminologies and examples that are specific to each organization.

In addition, PMWeb University provides online access to a library of videos, workshops, and exams for the different PMWeb modules and other PMWeb new product release events. Authorized PMWeb users can have 24X7 online access to all this knowledge to continuously improve and grow their knowledge of using the different PMWeb modules.


Action #14: Digitize the Organization’s Business Performance Reporting

The data captured in the PMWeb Project Management Information System and the many other applications that the organization might have to manage another line of business are needed to be monitored, evaluated, and reported on a corporate level. Some of those data sources have interfaces to other data sources it is not necessarily that those interfaces are integrated. Also, some corporate performance measures could depend on the data captured from different data sources. Using applications like TimeXtender, organizations can extract, load, transfer and blend data from any data source to create common tables and measures that can be monitored, evaluated, and reported on using corporate business intelligence and data visualization applications like MS Power BI, Tableau, Qlik among others.

By having access to this massive big data across the different organization’s business units and other external data sources, the organization can analyze, monitor, evaluate and report the performance of their organization an overall and use this data to predict the impact that current business performance could have on future results. Using advanced business intelligence and data visualization tools like MS Power BI, Tableau,d Qlik, there is virtually no limit to the reports and dashboards that can be created and shared. Those reports and dashboards can be accessed using different platforms depending on the stakeholder requirements.

About the Authorfounder

Bassam Samman, PMP, PSP, EVP, GPM is a Senior Project Management Consultant with more than 35-year service record providing project management and controls services to over 100 projects with a total value of over the US $5 Billion. Those projects included Commercial, Residential, Education and Healthcare Buildings and Infrastructure, Entertainment and Shopping Malls, Oil and Gas Plants and Refineries, and Telecommunication and Information Technology projects. He is thoroughly experienced in complete project management including project management control systems, computerized project control software, claims analysis/prevention, risk analysis/management (contingency planning), design, supervision, training, and business development.

Bassam is a frequent speaker on topics relating to Project Management, Strategic Project Management, and Project Management Personal Skills. Over the past 35 years, he has lectured at more than 350 events and courses at different locations in the Middle East, North Africa, Europe, and South America. He has written more than 250 articles on project management and project management information systems that were featured in international and regional magazines and newspapers. He is a co-founder of the Project Management Institute- Arabian Gulf Chapter (PMI-AGC) and has served on its board of directors for more than 6 years. He is a certified Project Management Professional (PMP) from the Project Management Institute (PMI), a certified Planning and Scheduling Professional (PSP), and Earned Value Professional (EVP) from the American Association of Cost Engineers (AACE) and Green Project Management (GPM).

Bassam holds a Masters in Engineering Administration (Construction Management) with Faculty Commendation, George Washington University, Washington, D.C., USA, Bachelor in Civil Engineering – Kuwait University, Kuwait and has attended many executive management programs at Harvard Business School, Boston, USA and London Business School, London, UK.


Contact us