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myProjects: a P3M system for project managers, by project managers

RPS General Manager and P3M software lead Paul Taylor on RPS' journey to develop myProjects - a project, program and portfolio management solution with a difference.

Evidence-based, purpose-led consulting solutions > Explore our insights

21 November 2023 | 1 min read
Paul Taylor

Australia

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Made by project managers, for project managers

In the world of professional services consulting, investing in proprietary technology could be seen as a risky move. But in the case of myProjects - RPS’ custom-designed portfolio, program and project management system – it’s a risk that’s paying big dividends.

Here, myProjects lead Paul Taylor shares the little-known backstory of a system made by project managers, for project managers, and the impact that myProjects is having for RPS client portfolios, from his home-state of Queensland to the UK, United States, and beyond.

Paul Taylor, Practice Lead - Capability Systems, QLD

Q Where did the story of myProjects begin?

The origin story began in two (very different!) places actually – in Norway, and here in South-East Queensland.

Back in 2018, RPS ran a professional exchange program where one of our project managers from the Gold Coast travelled to Oslo to spend time learning from colleagues at RPS-owned business, Metier. In return, we welcomed a Norwegian project manager for three months, and as part of that process got a demonstration of the project management system that Metier had developed for use with clients in Norway.

The timing was perfect, as we had already been looking at technology solutions to support some of the really large programs of work we had under management at that time. We saw a real opportunity to work with Metier’s platform and adapt it to suit the needs of clients here in Australia.

 

Q What did the local development process for myProjects look like?

Once the decision was made to take the system international, colleagues from Metier came over to Australia to familiarise our team with the original product and define how we could introduce it to local clients.

We deployed it for the first time with the Queensland Department of Education on its Advancing Clean Energy Schools (ACES) program. There was a huge opportunity there as the ACES program involved $168 million in sustainability upgrades across more than 900 schools all over the state – it was a truly P3M (portfolio, program and project) management endeavour.

Through that engagement we were able to learn and test the value we could provide through myProjects. And so began a process of developing, refining and shaping the system for the local market – a process that has continued ever since!

Q What kinds of clients are using myProjects?

Well, we still have our original client the Department of Education Queensland onboard, so that’s a great sign! Currently we have more than 9,000 projects running out of the system with a combined capital spend of around $10 billion.

We’ve got clients in Australia, the United States and the UK and the scope to service anywhere in the world. There are users in government and defence, corporate clients, and we are working with property investorsrenewables organisations, and resources companies…the list goes on.

Q What adaptations did you make to myProjects for the Australian market?

Metier had developed the original system with specific clients and requirements in mind. Because of that, the focus was largely on enterprise-level, whole-of-organisation deployments.

We can absolutely do enterprise and PMO rollouts with myProjects here in Australia – it’s built for that – but we saw opportunities for agile, smaller scale and lower-cost deployments as well. Perhaps introducing myProjects on a single program first, but having the ability to scale up to cover your entire portfolio at any time.

What it requires is flexibility, and the ability to stand up an environment quickly, without all of the technical complexity and longer timelines that come with enterprise system rollouts in terms of integration, hosting, maintenance etc.

So, we went on a journey to develop a solution that is purely cloud-based, modular, rapid-to-deploy and can be hosted as a service for our clients. Today, we can stand up a new myProjects environment and have clients using the system in days, not months.

Here in Australia and New Zealand, RPS has a team of more than 500 project managers working across a wide range of sectors and project types. We wanted myProjects to be entirely sector agnostic. At its core, myProjects is built on foundations of great project management – what it takes to govern, report, control and manage a program successfully.

A core principle of all of the development work we’ve done is that it has to be easy, and drive value quickly. It has to work no matter what you’re trying to deliver or the scale you’re working at.

We wanted myProjects to be entirely sector agnostic. At its core, myProjects is built on foundations of great project management – what it takes to govern, report, control and manage a program successfully.

Paul Taylor

General Manager - Capability Systems

Q What’s next for myProjects development?

From the beginning, we wanted to ensure myProjects didn’t depreciate over time like other technology products do.

All clients operate on the same version and have access to all system modules and capabilities. They may not choose to use them all, but they can turn things on or off at any time to suit the requirements of their business.

We are constantly working to refine and develop new modules based on client feedback so when improvements are made, the benefits flow through to all clients and users. One of our recent developments includes a prioritisation module, whereby we can capture, score, weight and prioritise potential projects.  

Upgrades are rolled out system-wide, so the value of a client’s investment is always going up, rather than down. Our approach is all about working with organisations to understand what they need from the system, how that function or integration could benefit all users, and ultimately directing our development to those value opportunities. 

Q You’ve been a core part of myProjects’ story from the beginning, what’s the experience been like for you?

myProjects has been a great experience. We knew technology was going to drive our PMO and project management business moving forward – and this was our opportunity to adapt and create a product that really responded to the challenges and opportunities we were seeing clients face.

I think one of the great things about the whole process has been the approach we’ve taken to it. We’ve committed all along to keep seeking feedback and adapting to the market. Our primary goal has always been to stay close to our clients and refine myProjects in response to their needs.

We’ve now got a great product that’s driving efficiency and value – you can’t ask for much more than that!