News and thoughts from CS Odessa, maker of the ConceptDraw product line: ConceptDraw PRO, ConceptDraw PROJECT and ConceptDraw MINDMAP.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Resource Management Using ConceptDraw PROJECT

ConceptDraw PROJECT makes it easy to change and adapt project calendars
Management of people resources in any project is a titanic task. As your team grows it is difficult to track all of your resources and their availability. With a growing number of resources the likelihood that all members of your team will be working 8 to 5, five days a week is a flight of the imagination. The product management solution you select needs to be flexible enough to accommodate whatever your project schedule is. Maybe your team for a project adopts 6 day work weeks during a critical project period, or maybe there is an individual who is only available for 4 days a week. Or your team works 10 hours a day 4 days a week during a project phase. No matter what your teams’ schedules or individuals’ schedules are, your project management solution needs to flex matching the resources you have available. Without this flexibility your projects will veer from their planned trajectories quickly, and projects that exhibit this behavior are seldom successful.

ConceptDraw PROJECT has the ability to maintain calendars that reflect the schedule of an overall project, a team and its availability for projects, or the work schedule of an individual. In the screen image you can see that the calendar that is associated with Tom S and how it has been modified from a standard schedule. Tom is available for work on a Sunday, but he will not be available on the 16 through the 19th. Once the calendar has been selected it is easy to make the necessary changes to Tom’s days and even the hours he can work. You can see that Tom’s calendar has been changed to show that he is available on the 12th. Once his calendar has been changed, you can then see on the Gantt chart, in the background, that a task assigned to Tom now starts on Sunday the 12th. Unless you made the change in Tom’s availability in his calendar, you could not have scheduled him to work on a Sunday.

ConceptDraw PROJECT has incredible flexibility that adapts to how you and your organization work. This plasticity in project workflow, improves the efficiency of you and your team. Efficient use of resources is critical in maintaining your projects on their planned path to successful completion.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

ConceptDraw PRO Has An Easy and Powerful Export to HTML

If you are looking to produce custom professional business graphics in HTML format, look no further then ConceptDraw PRO. With ConceptDraw PRO one can easily export a single page or multipage document with just a few clicks of a button. Above is an example of a 3 page test document that was exported using the HTML export wizard that is available in ConceptDraw PRO. The template selected of the export automatically adds a header which displays the name of the file as well as placing navigation buttons, making it easy to move to any page in the document. The page thumbnail images on the left of the main viewing area in the above example indicates the page being viewed, by selecting a different thumbnail image the new image is then displayed in the main viewing area. The page being viewed and its relation to other pages in the document can be easily identified in the column of thumbnail images on the left, a visual display indicator indicates the page selected. It is straightforward for anyone of any skill level to generate professional graphics in HTML format when using ConceptDraw PRO.

ConceptDraw PRO comes with many templates that span a wide variety of subject areas from flow charting to room layout, also included with ConceptDraw PRO is an extensive image library that is easy to use and modify. ConceptDraw PRO is a powerful solution that is right for your business and personal needs.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Business is all about Accomplishment. ConceptDraw Office is all about Business.

To accomplish something, is to bring about a desired result. The individual components of accomplishment can be broken down as either tactical or strategic. Tactical is often viewed as small-scale actions that contribute to a larger purpose, while strategic accomplishment is more focused on the integrated planned effect of a company. Strategy comes in many shapes; likewise there can be varying levels of impact. The one given is that attaining a successful strategy is critical to any business.

A Strategic Accomplish Map can be used for keeping your strategy visible at all times. This example [] may be used as a template. A company’s strategic plan must be broken down to department and individual levels. If this is not done, the company’s strategy may never be effective, as participants will not understand their roles.

“If the building blocks are clearly defined, the essence of even the most complex strategy can be expressed on one page.” ----An excerpt from, Execution. The Discipline of Getting Things Done.

At CS Odessa our version of this quote is:
“If the building blocks are clearly defined, the essence of even the most complex strategy can be expressed on ONE MIND MAP. “

Mapping Strategy Implementation
Many times strategy, after the initial planning stage, is elusive in its identification and implementation. Mind mapping is a great starting point to sort through this, as many of our customers use ConceptDraw Office to assist them in attaining their goals.

ConceptDraw Office is a business solution that combines business productivity methods and data visualization with project management technologies. There is no other product on the market equipped enough to enable one to observe and analyze accomplishment processes inside and out. ConceptDraw Office makes it a snap to plan, develop, manage, and document quality processes. ConceptDraw Office is comprised of ConceptDraw MINDMAP, ConceptDraw PROJECT, and ConceptDraw PRO and is packaged as one seamless software tool kit.

ConceptDraw MINDMAP
ConceptDraw MINDMAP is an excellent tool to record observations and development of goals. Moving from observation stage to early process development is as easy as dragging-and-dropping items or objects that can be used to structure a process and then immediately assign resources.

ConceptDraw PROJECT
With a single push of a button, all observations and task information are automatically moved over from ConceptDraw MINDMAP to ConceptDraw PROJECT. From a project vantage point it is then easy to manage all the resources available to you and ensure proper management of all the processes put into place.

ConceptDraw PRO
ConceptDraw PRO is a professional business graphics and drawing tool that is an integral part of ConceptDraw Office. ConceptDraw PRO is well known for its ability to produce eye popping business graphics and flow charts in professional formats, and to build score card documents that report on project status.Plan, Do, CommunicateConceptDraw Office is a proven and powerful software solution that can assist you in the common challenges you are faced with when working towards accomplishing your company’s defined goals.

Works Cited
Bossidy, Larry, Ram Charan, and Charles Burck. Execution The Discipline of Getting Things Done. New York: Crown Business, 2002.
Hunger, J. David, and Tom Wheelen. Essentials of Strategic Management (4th Edition). Upper Saddle River: Prentice Hall, 2006.