Content and Presentation
- How Agile Methods can easily be combined with CCPM
- Case Study 1 (R&D): a complete CCPM Implementation in combination with Agile Methods –projects throughput increased by a factor of 3.7
- Case Study 2 (new product industrialization): a very high speed CCPM Implementation – in 31 working days
Both case studies are about CCPM implementations with Endress+Hauser (http://www.endress.com/en) They produce field testing instruments for automation and control of processes (Sales US$2.2 billion, 13.000 Employees).
E+H is a stable a well-established company active worldwide. E+H has continually invested to improve their project management. Due to ever shorter innovation cycles and increasing global competition the pressure for short new product time to market grew steadily. To accelerate their R&D (250 employees worldwide) E&H decided to implement agile methodologies – mainly in software development. Despite serious effort, friction between software and electronics/mechanics teams increased which then resulted in poor due date reliability and even increased lead times.
After struggling, with inadequate success, to reduce lead times to something more competitive, E+H chose to implement CCPM in conjunction with agile and existing project management.
Once R&D implemented CCPM their bottleneck moved to new product industrialization (150 employees). This group could no longer stay ahead of the rate at which new products arrive at their part of the operation. It became evident to all that CCPM was necessary in industrialization too. Not only was CCPM necessary, but it also needed to be up and running quickly.
A complete CCPM Implementation based on the projects Strategy & Tactics described in the revised edition of “Projects that Flow” from Uwe Techt.
Agile teams were maintained and integrated in the new CCPM system at a work-package level as described in the presentation “Agile Project Management: Critical Chain and Reliable/Ultimate Scrum equals an Agile Enterprise” from Wolfram Müller on the TOCICO 2013.
The agile teams work on (software) ‘releases’ that are the equivalent of a work package in the CCPM plan. All agile artefacts, roles and meetings were kept – for agile teams the only new thing is to regularly report remaining durations (for a release) to the CCPM project. This integration of agile and CCPM we call “Reliable Scrum”.
Further on flow was improved by preventing multi-tasking at the software engineer/programmer level. This is done with a simple task board (TameFlow-Board/Ultimate Scrum). The Task-board limits WIP at the person level and reduces task or sub-task durations of subtasks to less than a day. These actions cause all disruptions to emerge quickly and so they can be eliminated immediately. The result is one-piece-flow on employee level.
Results have been publicized. To get an impression of the scale of their success here are a few public number (“()” are the real numbers ;-):
- Reduction of the average delay per project from 50% (100%) down to 25% (10%)
- Increase of project throughput by a factor >3 (3,7)
- Reduction of the project lead times by 25% (50-60%)
In R&D the task delivery rate jumped by +60% within 12 weeks.
The full CCPM implementation (all S&T nodes below node 3.1.1) started 15.01.2015 and took 6-months of intensive change work and 6 months to stabilize the process.
Important to recognize is the speed of the second step (industrialization). The whole change took just 31 working days or two months for the complete CCPM change – at full operational load.
Side note: An additional challenge for the customer was the switch to a new project management software. The software in place should have been CCPM able. But, just as the company was ready to go live with the new process their software supplier implemented a major release. The new release did not function and it appeared that fixing the problem would take a long time. After several weeks of trying to solve the problem E+H decided to switch to another system. Purchasing, installing, training and moving all projects to the new system – was all completed in 3 weeks.
The implementation team never thought that the results could be so great nor that the software change could be done so quickly. They are justifiably proud of what they have achieved.
VISTEM invested a great deal of effort to stabilize and improve the CCPM implementation process. VISTEM’s starting point is the 2010 “projects S&T”. Most of the VISTEM’s learnings and best practices are now documented in the book “Projects that Flow” by Uwe Techt.
To Integrate Agile an additional node was introduced, placed directly after the 5.111.2. The TameFlow-task-boards (s. above) are introduced in critical most loaded teams to eliminate damaging multitasking. In node 5.114.1 task-boards included as a best practice in order to more easily determine the remaining duration.
These changes have been implemented in over 10 implementations, all with similar results. The process is proven and working well. But it is not the end of the improvement road!