Article #265 How Can Project Owners Ensure a Single Version of the Truth When it Comes to Monitoring, Evaluating and Reporting Capital Projects’ Portfolio Performance for Projects Having Their Own Project Management Information System (PMIS) Instance?

It is a given fact that the performance of every capital project, regardless of its size, type or location, needs to monitored, evaluated and reported on. Nevertheless, it is also a fact that the approach adopted in monitoring, evaluating and reporting capital projects performance varies from one project to another. This is mainly because of the fact that monitoring, evaluating and reporting projects’ performance is largely influenced by the requirements of the key stakeholders of each project even with the same organization. Those include the project owner or employer representative, the project management consultant, the EPC or general contractor project manager among others.

This can become even more challenging when there is a requirement that projects need to have their own instance for the Project Management Information System (PMIS) like PMWeb to manage the everyday project management processes. Having standalone PMIS instance at each project could be a contractual requirement given the fact that the entities involved in delivering a project could differ from one project to another as well as their contractual obligations for managing the project delivery could also differ.

To overcome those challenges that could prohibit the project owner to have a single version of the truth projects performance reporting at macro and micro level, the project owner needs to have a documented standard operating procedure (SOP) for monitoring, evaluating and reporting capital projects’ performance. Having this SOP will eliminate the differences in selecting what to monitor, when to evaluate and which format to report performance. The SOP should also specify the PMIS to be used across all projects to ensure that monitoring, evaluating and reporting projects’ performance at macro and micro levels are based on the same projects’ data source type.

The SOP will also detail the macro level reporting requirement which will focus on the projects’ portfolio performance and the micro level will be specific for a single project performance. This in turn will ensure the project owner organization will have at all times a single version of truth monitoring, evaluating and reporting of projects portfolio performance.

Similar to all other contractual requirements, the monitoring, evaluating and reporting requirements will be detailed under section “01 30 00 Administrative Requirements” of the contract’s specifications for those who are using the Construction Specification Institute (CSI) Masterformat. The specification will detail the different processes that need to be managed, monitored, evaluated and reported on as well as the details of the web-enabled Project Management Information System (PMIS) to be used like PMWeb for example. The specifications should also clearly specify the ownership of the PMWeb database for which it will be always owned by the project owner even after the project’s closeout. This is a common practice for all Common Database Environment (CDE) applications as it will enable the project owner to access this database whenever there is a need to do that.

The SOP will also detail the forms, reports and dashboards templates that will be provided by the project owner for each project’s PMWeb instance. This will expedite the process of launching the PMWeb PMIS and enforce the project management processes standardization as detailed in the SOP.

One of the reports that will be included in the standard reports set is a report that will be titled “Consolidated Weekly Performance Report”. This report will capture all periodical progress details that will be needed for the project owner or employer macro performance reporting. For projects that either does not have a PMIS in place due to the fact that the specifications did not have this requirement or is using a PMIS other than PMWeb as on some projects, the project owner cannot specify a single source for the PMIS or was implemented before the PCS specifications were enforced.

To ensure accountability and governance, the “Consolidated Weekly Performance Report” needs to be formally submitted by the authorized project manager to the project employer. This will be done by using a custom form created in the PMWeb instance that the project employer has. Each project manager will use this form to attach and submit the updated Consolidated Weekly Performance Report.

The macro performance reporting tool which could be MS Power BI or any other data visualization tool, will be configured to read the “Consolidated Weekly Performance Report” directly from PMWeb or any other PMIS instance including MS Excel files for projects that do not a PMIS in place.

To improve the reporting in MS Power BI, it is recommended to have a MS Excel file that will map the projects’ portfolio breakdown structure (PPBS) also known as the Enterprise Projects Structure (EPS). For each project, the file will include the fields for country, region, GIS coordinates, type, ESRI Shapefile OBJECTID and other details could improve the visualization of the performance dashboard. Those values are fixed for each project and will not be changed from the data the project was first created until it is closed. Since the project number in this file will be identical to the project number used in the “Consolidated Weekly Performance Report”, those data tables can be easily associated.

The SOP will ensure that all critical project objectives that matters most to the project owner are formally monitored, evaluated and reported on. Those would include performance measures that are based on the data captured for performing the different processes for managing the project scope of work, schedule, estimated cost, baseline budget and adjustments, quality assurance and quality control, site management communications, risks and issues, procurement of contracts, contract management, contractual obligations and entitlements, change management, interim payment certificates (IPC) and actual payments of approved (IPC), interface management, health, safety and environment (HSE), claims and disputes, sustainability among others.

The data from the

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 in excess of US $5 Billion. Those projects included Commercial, Residential, Education and Healthcare Buildings and Infrastructure, Entertainment and Shopping Malls, Oil and Gas Plants and Refineries, 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 in 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