Information Technology

Consumer Packaged Goods Merger: IT Master Plan


When two of the worlds largest food manufacturers merged, the IT organizations were charged with supporting the new enterprise and enabling its success. They faced the enormous challenge of bringing the two companies together. This scenario resulted in over 250 projects being started to accomplish the merger while continuing to support the business’s growth goals and innovation strategies.


BusinessForward delivered an IT project portfolio management solution. The four phased approach towards solution design included:

  • Plan – Gather all existing project information, centralize into a PPM (Project and Portfolio Management) Tool (in this case it was Plainview) and analyze in order to assess: Collision Points, Dependencies, Overlaps and Opportunities to Improve
  • Execute – Design a set of reports intended for Senior Level Management to use in order better plan for and execute projects
  • Communicate – Engage and collaborate with the people who will be creating and using the reports in order to ensure adoption. Make sure that the reports are easy to create and use. Make sure they are easy to understand and only include the most important and valuable information.
  • Build – Operationalize the plan so that it can be created once and continuously updated. The problem with efforts like this, is that they are done once a year and the process is very painful to reproduce. Our goal was to build a dynamic model that would be constantly updated so that executives can keep their fingers on the pulse of project activity.


Our solution provided the following benefits:

  • A Central Repository – Now all project details are centralized in one PPM tool, Planview, making it easier to create the visibility needed to plan for and execute projects
  • A set of high level, strategic reports that senior leadership can use to not only plan better for projects, but also enable them to better manage ongoing projects and make adjustments where necessary.
  • A continuous portfolio management program instead of the previous annual approach that would fall out of date after a couple of weeks.
  • Improved communication and collaboration between the people working on the projects, the people supporting project operations, the leadership team and the project stakeholders.
This project was a real challenge because we had so many executives and members of the leadership team on the Steering Committee. Everyone in the room had their own agenda and everyone’s opinion carried equal weight. BusinessForward did a great job of managing expectations and delivered a solution to meet everyone’s needs.” – Executive Sponsor

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