Manitou: Furthering Product Innovation & Development with PPM Solution
By implementing Sciforma 7.0 PPM, material-handling equipment leader Manitou is streamlining development projects and getting new products to market faster.
The Manitou Group is a world-leader in all terrain material-handling equipment for construction, agriculture, and a broad range of industries. Through its core brands – Manitou, Gehl, and Mustang, the group designs, manufactures, distributes, and services over 200 models. These include telehandlers; all-terrain, semi-industrial and industrial masted forklifts; skidsteers; track loaders; articulated loaders; access platforms; truck-mounted forklifts; warehousing equipment; and attachments. With over 3000 employees in 240 countries and 1.3 billion euros in annual sales, Manitou counts on constant innovation from its team of 225 engineers. In addition to maintaining a steady flow of new models, the team is always pushing for new technical and ergonomic improvements (things like hydraulic joysticks, stop & go, and better ergonomics) on existing models and parts. The team is also tasked with finding new ways to reduce the cost of ownership, energy, and carbon footprint while delivering the highest value for its customers.
Project Management Challenges
- Time tracking across projects and departments (R&D, design, testing, prototyping, product management, finance, upper management) couldn’t be consolidated.
- No one had an easy way to get a bird’s eye view of planning across departments and projects.
- Monitoring budgets was complex.
- No one was using a solution that could scale across all the teams involved in getting new products launched.
The challenge: find a tool that would consolidate project data in real time across all project portfolios, facilitate real-time reporting, and be fully scalable across the company.
The Solution: Sciforma 7 PPM
The Manitou group chose the Sciforma 7.0 PPM tool for project portfolio management, resource management, and time tracking. Sciforma was a tool that adapted to both their existing and future requirements.
The features of Sciforma 7.0 PPM were an excellent match for the needs of all teams, and the purchase and deployment costs aligned well with their budget. The Sciforma solutions Manitou chose are:
- Project portfolio management
- IT project management
- Product management based on Phase Gate methods and work packages
- Time tracking
After a thorough assessment of Sciforma 7.0 PPM, Manitou’s team realized that by deploying it beyond R&D, the new tool would open doors to looking at time and project data from new perspectives. They decided that Sciforma 7.0 PPM should also be used by the project management office, the IT department (which wanted a web solution without a java component), and project teams across all the design sites.
Deployment of Sciforma 7.0 PPM was fast. The first implementation began at the end of June 2015, and the IT department was up and running a few months later. The product side quickly followed. In 2017, Manitou rolled out Sciforma 7.0 PPM to more sites and departments.
Manitou management cited a number of advantages that make deployment fast and smooth:
- The relationship. Manitou worked closely with ASI Informatique, Sciforma’s local certified partner.
- Ready-to-use. While the Sciforma solution can be customized, Manitou opted to use the built-in extensions, methodologies, and Phase-Gate configuration to reduce implementation time.
- Training. Sciforma trained the Manitou IT and project administrators. Workshops with ASI Informatique and regular follow-up meetings between Manitou and Sciforma further accelerated deployment.
Implementation Across the Company
Sciforma 7.0 PPM is currently used at Manitou by over 300 people (including 20 project directors). It covers the planning of 10-15 simultaneous projects lasting from 6 months to 3 years.
Faster, more precise, and global reporting.
- Project directors have more precise and accurate tracking of their projects within and across departments – which allows for faster, more dynamic course correction.
- Managers are now able to consult all programs and monitor alerts and load requirements.
- Time tracking for project personnel (and their schedules for the next three months) are available for each project.
- Access to project tracking reports can be granted to those who request it, even customers.
- All users benefit from improved ergonomics, availability across all sites and rapid access to information.
With Sciforma 7.0 PPM, Manitou is seeing the results of improvements in project management:
- Reporting is now faster, collaborative, and done in real time.
- Fixed pieces of projects can be incorporated more rapidly into due-date planning.
- Day-to-day management of generic resources and load optimization is easier.
- Resource needs are clear and easily shown.
- With real-time reporting, resources can be optimally allocated to ensure timely delivery.
- With both bird’s eye and detailed views of ongoing projects – from the development phase through prototyping and testing – Manitou managers are able to significantly streamline the development cycle. That means new products get to market faster.
In fact, Manitou is so pleased with the results of Sciforma 7.0 PPM, they’ve now moved into a pilot project for broader portfolio management across the company.