Netgear: Centralizing Data for Better Worldwide Collaboration
Global Networking - Interview with Mr. Ken Rheaume, Director of Program Management
Netgear is a global networking company that delivers innovative products to consumers, businesses and service providers. For consumers, the company makes high performance, dependable and easy to use home networking, storage and digital media products to connect people with the Internet and their content and devices. For businesses, NETGEAR provides networking, storage and security solutions without the cost and complexity of Big IT. The company also supplies top service providers with retail proven, whole home solutions for their customers. NETGEAR products are built on a variety of proven technologies such as wireless, Ethernet and powerline, with a focus on reliability and ease-of-use.
What were you looking for in a Portfolio and Project Management Tool?
We wanted to combine all components of our portfolio into one easy-to-use program that was flexible, but not rigid and could be customized to meet our specific needs. We also wanted a tool that offered scheduling capabilities and Sciforma has that.
What issues did you want to solve by purchasing a Portfolio and Project Management tool?
Our primary goal was to consolidate information from multiple systems into one place with easy access and instant availability – information that was readily available just in time.
Who in your company benefits the most from Sciforma? How and why?
We used to spend every Friday consolidating data from different systems and preparing reports for senior management. We used Excel to track the status of projects, MS Word for generating reports and MS Project to help schedule and track projects. Using different programs for manual updating and duplication created room for error. Additionally, the product line manager would have to ask to enter into the record reports. Now that we are using Sciforma, all the data is stored in one place. It is a collaborative tool that is easily accessible, even to Netgear managers who are in remote locations around the world. The program makes it very easy to generate reports for company executives and there is no more cutting and pasting to produce different types of reports for different people.
Why did you choose Sciforma?
We set up a list of criteria that our project and portfolio management tool needed to address, including ease of use, reporting, project planning, ability to handle schedules, scalability, production release application integration, and strength of the company providing the tool. We carefully evaluated three vendors and chose Sciforma as it addressed each of our criteria.
Who would you recommend Sciforma to?
I would recommend Sciforma to anybody who manages any scale of project, and specifically program managers who run cross-functional teams.
What issues did Sciforma solve?
As a Project Tracking Tool, Sciforma provides consistency, automation and efficiency. It brings structure to our processes, and allows for integration and collaboration. Furthermore, it offers standardization, control and monitoring.
Was Sciforma able to adapt to your own processes?
The Sciforma consultants worked very closely with us to customize the program to meet the needs of our portfolio. We were particularly impressed with how well the consultants understood our project management goals. The training process was seamless because the program itself is very intuitive. We were able to go live quickly and without any glitches.
How does Sciforma facilitate team collaboration?
The collaboration tool is extremely valuable. We are able to set up a workflow so that each team member is responsible for his or her specific part. The program provides high visibility to everybody, which facilitates monitoring the status and progress of projects. This is especially useful to senior management for budget tracking, managing risk and managing decisions.
How does Sciforma help your company become more effective, innovative and competitive?
Streamlining projects with Sciforma has saved Netgear product managers a great deal of time and eliminated a great deal of frustration. We are a large corporation with a large portfolio of projects. Having immediate access to project status that is consolidated into one place has removed the human error component. It has provided us with at-a-glance status, to-do lists, deadlines, reports and more. These features are even more critical when you factor in international operations that must be managed and tracked.