Compuware Heats Up PPM Space

Changepoint 12 raises the bar on project and portfolio management.

Compuware on June 26 will continue to assert its leadership in the IT project and portfolio management space when it launches Version 12 of its Changepoint product.

Changepoint, positioned in the leaders portion of Gartners Magic Quadrant for IT Project and Portfolio management along with CAs Clarity, HPs PPM and others, addressed in the new version ongoing portfolio decision making, enhanced collaboration with business constituents on automated business processes and improved resource management.

The PPM market, which Gartner estimated reached $946 million in 2006, has heated up in the past year due to new product releases, acquisitions and new packaging options, according to Gartners recently released Research Note on the space.

Compuware, which acquired Changepoint in 2004 and has put out two major new releases since the acquisition, sought to set itself apart from competitors by managing all types of demands placed on IT, whether they come from the planning, project management, applications development or ongoing operations sides of IT.

/zimages/1/28571.gifRead more here about Changepoint 10.

"With Version 12 weve enabled a dynamic decision-making capability across all IT portfolios," said Lori Ellsworth, director of product management for Changepoint products in Toronto, Canada.

The new release allows IT to "put together different scenarios of work to decide which should be funded, based on what would most effectively serve the business. It allows [users] to build potential scenarios of work that involve all the work, whether it is planned, request-driven or an operational demand. Those scenarios really reflect whats going on in the business at a given point in time," Ellsworth said.

The different scenarios are analyzed through a new graphical interface that provides comparisons through bar, pie, bubble, line and Gantt charts.

"It allows IT to be more effective at decision making and allows them to engage the customer in that process. They can review graphically different scenarios and decide whats best," added Ellsworth.

Compuware also enhanced the Client Portal component of Changepoint to allow business constituents to participate throughout the entire IT business process, including submitting business cases, final funding, change requests and work requests.

"Now [IT] can actively engage [the] business stakeholder in the automated process. As the business stakeholder identifies a new request, they submit it through the portal, evaluate the initiative, provide input and give final approval. If the business stakeholder [initiates] a change request, IT can evaluate the impact of that in terms of cost and risk, and it automatically routes that back to the stakeholder for final approval," described Ellsworth.

Version 12 also enhances fundamental resource management tasks with new support for project dependencies, allowing an IT organization to identify the interdependencies between different projects and automate actions to be taken if a change is made. At the same time, it allows users to be more efficient at allocating resources to different types of tasks.

"We consider all the demands being made and provide the most efficient suggestions on how to apply resources to tasks to be done in a timely fashion," said Ellsworth.

Matt Light, a research vice president at Gartner, believes that "Changepoint 12 has the potential of increasing its impact on the market landscape—the caveat being, if the Compuware sales force can think outside the box, adopt and drive a product new and unfamiliar to them," he said.

Changepoint V 12 is available now.

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