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Health Care Project Portfolio Management

Health care project portfolio management software from Automation Centre helps health care organizations to more easily manage their project portfolios and identify the value of projects.

The ability to manage projects and their resources, measured against their status and estimated benefits, allows organizations to identify value projects and effectively budget and allocate resources. Using project portfolio management in tandem with an earned value measurement system, health care organizations can ensure that valuable projects have the time and resources they need to succeed, while projects of lesser benefit are re-scheduled or scaled back accordingly.

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For example, the Department of Veteran Affairs saved over $54 million dollars in its 2010 fiscal year1 by reviewing the value and costs of computer projects in its portfolio, and stopping those projects deemed too far over budget or behind schedule.

Defining Work and Assigning Value

Utilizing TrackerSuite.Net, health care organizations can thoroughly define the purpose, goals and value of their work, at both the project and individual task level.

Using a project definition document, project managers can outline the project's place in the health care organization's programs and its technical objectives, as well as its stakeholders, key dates, cost center, priority, resources and budget (TrackerSuite.Net allows project budgets to be set at either the project or task level).

The next step is to create the tasks (also referred to as 'terminal elements' in earned value systems). Like projects, tasks have a task definition document which contains a description of the work required, its priority, expected completion date, budget category (such as capital or non-capital) and most importantly, its budgeted time. Using the time scheduled for the task in conjunction with the hourly cost rates of the resources assigned to the task, an initial Planned Value for that task can be determined.

These tasks are organized in a Work Breakdown Structure model that supports dependencies and task linking. In defining the project's process within the WBS with the assignment of responsibilities and metrics such as milestones and completion percentages, a Performance Measurement Baseline can be determined by totaling these processes.

Tracking Status and Progress

Once a project is underway, managers submit periodic status reports on its progress. TrackerSuite.Net sends automated reminders for late reports, encouraging timely submissions. The data from these reports is rolled into color coded project dashboards, which along with milestone grids, provides an at-a-glance review of the health care organization's project portfolio. To drill down into the health of the project portfolio, users can also utilize a project portfolio dashboard report in the Tracker Data Warehouse, offers a with filters and pivot tables.

Measuring Performance and Value

TrackerSuite.Net provides several measurements of assessing a health care projects adherence to schedule and expected costs.

  • A Schedule Variance (SV) provides a cost differential between the Earned Value and the Planned Value of the work .
  • A Schedule Performance Index (SPI) provides a qualitative assessment of the project's schedule.
  • Using Cost Variance (CV) and the Cost Performance Index (CPI), health care organizations and review the project's performance against costs.

TrackerSuite.Net provides an at-a-glance review of these values in an earned value project portfolio report, a color-coded dashboard that highlight projects that are off schedule or over budget. TrackerSuite.Net also provides an Estimate to Completion (EAC) value that forecasts the costs required to complete a project or task, based on existing Planned Value, Earned Value and Actual Cost data.

Color coded project dashboard

Project dashboards for at-a-glance reviews, with color coded warnings for budgets and schedules

Earned Value Report

Review the earned value metrics of projects

Project WBS

Assemble project tasks in a Work Breakdown Structure with linking and indenting

  • 1 Molly Merrill. "VA saves $54M by boosting management, accountability of IT projects". Healthcare IT News (February 24, 2010).