Question
Asked 11th May, 2014

What is the best way to create a consistent set of metrics for a project management dashboard?

I am currently researching the best way to implement a high level project management dashboard, composed of multiple IT projects. I need to be able to represent all the main stages of the project life cycle, along with resource and finance. My problem is (along with my inexperience), deciding on how information should be represented. Milestones are currently being used but each project has different milestones. Is there a 'best practice' approach to transforming these into a universal/cross project metric?
Would the MCDA-C approach be useful for this, or indeed are there any methods I should be researching?
I would also appreciate any recommendations for reading. I seem to be reading a lot and learning little.

Most recent answer

9th Jan, 2017
Francois Jean Abbe
ArianeGroup
I would also suggest as Randal and Mohamed described to use the PMI standards as a reference. I agree with  P. Ballesteros-Pérez, "the best metrics to monitor and control Project progress in terms of Time and Cost are encompassed under the "Earned Value Management" topic".
For a Dashboard, a maximum 3 KPI (key perfo indicators) are sufficient. The compliance matrix to requirements a good tool.
PMI France Chapter VP.

Popular answers (1)

11th May, 2014
Mohamed Benmerikhi Ph.D
EDHEC Business School Lille
May I suggest "Agile dashboard metrics". There is a wealth of information on the internet. Alternatively, you may consult the PMI website: www.pmi.org
Create an account in order to able to access the reference documents and standards.
3 Recommendations

All Answers (14)

11th May, 2014
Mohamed Benmerikhi Ph.D
EDHEC Business School Lille
From your question, it seems that you are looking for a "program management tool" rather than a project management tool. "Program management" is a group of inter-relted projects managed in a coordinated way.
2 Recommendations
11th May, 2014
Helen Stevenson
Edinburgh Napier University
thank you Mohamed, i really appreciate you taking the time to answer.
any suggestions in regard to researching these academically, particularly in reference to dashboards?
11th May, 2014
Mohamed Benmerikhi Ph.D
EDHEC Business School Lille
May I suggest "Agile dashboard metrics". There is a wealth of information on the internet. Alternatively, you may consult the PMI website: www.pmi.org
Create an account in order to able to access the reference documents and standards.
3 Recommendations
11th May, 2014
Mohamed Benmerikhi Ph.D
EDHEC Business School Lille
Also if you are part of an academic institution, then they would probably provide you with free access to electronic databases such as Sciencedirect and EBSCO. Mosqt of the project management literature should be there.
2 Recommendations
11th May, 2014
Helen Stevenson
Edinburgh Napier University
Again, i cant thank you enough for your time.
12th May, 2014
Mohamed Benmerikhi Ph.D
EDHEC Business School Lille
You are welcome, and best of luck with your work.
1 Recommendation
13th May, 2014
Mohd Hisham Ariffin
Universiti Teknologi MARA
Try google the word "Portfolio management" "Strategic project management" and "Enterprise project management"
1 Recommendation
13th May, 2014
Helen Stevenson
Edinburgh Napier University
Thanks mohd
13th May, 2014
Scott Breslin
Örebro University
I suggest using project phases and indicators that are used by the Project Management Institute (PMI) see www.pmi.org These are found in their PMBOK guide and standards. This is not an "academic" work but a set of standards that are used almost universally among professional project managers. I just noticed that Mohamed B suggest the same. By aligning to these standards I think your work would find a good niche among project management professionals. Good luck.
1 Recommendation
14th May, 2014
Helen Stevenson
Edinburgh Napier University
Thanks again guys.
14th May, 2014
Dominik Neuner
IU International University of Applied Sciences
I would also suggest as Randal and Mohamed described to use the PMI standards as a reference. Additionally you can also search for the IPMA standard documented in the ICB Version 3 which is the european counterpart of the PMI. Those two organization provide the most common standards in project management.
Additional ressources to find more information about dashboards and project portfolio management:
ISO 21.500 Guidance for people working in project management area
GAPPS (GLOBAL ALLIANCE FOR PROJECT PERFORMANCE STANDARDS)
Kerzner, H. (2013), Project Management: A Systems Approach to Planning, Scheduling, and Controlling, 11th ed., Wiley, Hoboken, NJ.
Schwaber, K., Beedle, M. (2002), Agile Software Development with Scrum, 1st ed., Prentice Hall, Upper Saddle River, NJ.
Best regards and good luck
3 Recommendations
27th May, 2014
Jürgen Münch
Hochschule Reutlingen
I recommend this article as a starting point:
Jürgen Münch, Jens Heidrich. Software project control centers: concepts and approaches. Journal of Systems and Software, 70(1–2):3 – 19, 2004.
As methods for coming up with appropriate metrics I recommend GQM and GQM+Strategies. The following article gives you guidelines on what to consider when customizing dashboards to your project:
Jens Heidrich, Jürgen Münch. Goal-oriented customization of software cockpits. Journal of Software Maintenance and Evolution: Research and Practice, 22(5):381–405, 2010.
The following article helps you to link your project goals with higher-level goals of your organization:
Victor R. Basili, Michael Lindvall, Myrna Regardie, Carolyn Seaman, Jens Heidrich, Jürgen Münch, Dieter Rombach, Adam Trendowicz. Linking Software Development and Business Strategy Through Measurement. Computer, 43(4):57-65, 2010.
Finally, if you want to evaluate your dashboard you can use the following approach:
Victor R. Basili, Michael Lindvall, Myrna Regardie, Carolyn Seaman, Jens Heidrich, Jürgen Münch, Dieter Rombach, Adam Trendowicz. Linking Software Development and Business Strategy Through Measurement. Computer, 43(4):57-65, 2010.
All articles should be on ResearchGate and can be found for download here:
1 Recommendation
4th Sep, 2014
P. Ballesteros-Pérez
Universitat Politècnica de València
In my opinion, the best metrics to monitor and control Project progress in terms of Time and Cost are encompassed under the "Earned Value Management" topic.
I recommend this book where you can find the more up-to-date (and easy to understand) version of these metrics on chapter twelve:
"Project Management with Dynamic Scheduling. Baseline Scheduling, Risk Analysis and Project Control” Mario Vanhoucke. Editorial: Springer. 2012. ISBN 978-3-642-25174-0"
1 Recommendation
9th Jan, 2017
Francois Jean Abbe
ArianeGroup
I would also suggest as Randal and Mohamed described to use the PMI standards as a reference. I agree with  P. Ballesteros-Pérez, "the best metrics to monitor and control Project progress in terms of Time and Cost are encompassed under the "Earned Value Management" topic".
For a Dashboard, a maximum 3 KPI (key perfo indicators) are sufficient. The compliance matrix to requirements a good tool.
PMI France Chapter VP.

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