Organizational strategies result in the definition of comprehensive programs, projects and initiatives to achieve desired objectives. By necessity, these programs are monitored at a tactical level to ensure that each detailed milestone is reached to progress the overall strategy forward.
Unfortunately, monitoring at a tactical level makes it challenging to understand status of the higher-level strategic objectives. Today, many companies address that challenge with significant manual effort. Tactical project managers provide details about their specific areas of ownership and the Program Owner or PMO aggregates content from all projects to prepare executive briefings. The effort to produce these executive briefings is time consuming! In fact, a study completed by Bain & Company estimates that companies spend 300,000 hours a year supporting weekly executive briefings.
While that volume of time is staggering, the more detrimental issue is the delay in providing information to the executive team. Strategic decisions are made based upon dated information. By the time the aggregated information reaches the executives, it is often too late to course correct, to help their teams clear hurdles, or to take advantage of new opportunities. This inability to make quick decisions is a critical issue and contributes to the strategy execution gap.
In reviewing this challenge, Gartner’s Donna Fitzgerald raised this key question: what approach must organizations implement to help executives make better, faster decisions so that they can pivot quickly to achieve greater strategic results?
The answer is that companies must work smarter, not harder. Gone are the days of brute force use of spreadsheets to track information, presentations to communicate it, and an army of people to maintain it. The smarter, more agile company connects the strategy with the performance information real time and generates always-current briefing decks.
As competition increases and resources become more constrained, it will be the smarter companies that succeed. Providing accurate information faster to drive executive decisions will be a powerful competitive advantage and will help to close the strategy execution gap.
Learn how Shibumi enables the smarter enterprise. Contact us today.
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Strategy execution platform transforms how organizations execute strategic initiatives to deliver better results
Shibumi.com, the platform designed to execute strategy and deliver results, today announced that it has been named as a cool vendor in the “Cool Vendors in PPM, 2017” report by Gartner, Inc.
According to Gartner, “Through 2020, solutions like these will help PPM leaders decide among complex, bimodal trade-offs, striking the right investment balance between advancing future business goals and keeping today’s operations running smoothly.” Shibumi provides a single flexible platform to enable strategic execution. PPM leaders involved with enterprise program management offices, strategy realization offices, and business transformation offices should care because Shibumi is essentially the first offering directed for their needs.
“We are honored to be recognized by Gartner for the innovations that we have brought to market. Shibumi is changing the way executives, PMO leadership, and advisors execute and report on their most critical strategic initiatives,” said Bob Nahmias, CEO of Shibumi. “We are working with some of the largest enterprises and advisory firms globally to transform the way they deliver value from their strategic initiatives. We believe this report validates our vision and how critical a platform like ours is in the digital age.”
The Gartner report authored by Robert Handler, et al was published on May 22, 2017. The complete report may be found at https://www.gartner.com/document/3723717.
Founded in 2012, Shibumi is a platform that allows organizations to define, optimize and accelerate strategic initiative delivery. Enterprise leaders and their advisors leverage Shibumi to rapidly productize their methodologies, leading to better reporting and more informed decisions. Headquartered in Stamford, CT, Shibumi is a privately-backed company. To learn more about Shibumi, visit www.shibumi.com.
Gartner Disclaimer: Gartner does not endorse any vendor, product or service depicted in its research publications, and does not advise technology users to select only those vendors with the highest ratings or other designation. Gartner research publications consist of the opinions of Gartner’s research organization and should not be construed as statements of fact. Gartner disclaims all warranties, expressed or implied, with respect to this research, including any warranties of merchantability or fitness for a particular purpose.
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For any large company, enterprise-class IT requirements must be met prior to widespread implementation and adoption of software solutions. Shibumi is proud to announce that we have released enhanced SSO capabilities. Now, the IT requirements related to account management and user authentication are more easily addressed for Shibumi implementations.
Seamless authentication and account management
With Shibumi SSO, companies (and IT departments) can take advantage of the configuration capabilities exposed through their selected identity management service provider. This includes requirements related to password strength, frequency of password change, account lock outs, etc. Once SSO is implemented, users invited to Shibumi are simply redirected to their company’s login URL or service; there is no need to maintain separate Shibumi-specific account credentials!
For large organizations with hundreds (or thousands) of employees, this ability to consolidate the maintenance of employee system access into a single identity provider is essential.
Standard based consistency and ease of implementation
Shibumi’s SSO authentication adheres to the SAML (Security Assertion Markup Language) 2.0 standards. By adhering to this standard, Shibumi can easily integrate with many of the leading identity management service providers. In fact, we worked closely with Ping Identity, Okta, and CA SSO throughout the SSO development effort.
Shibumi will continue to grow our library of reference implementations to streamline the effort associated with configuring Shibumi SSO with your selected service provider.
We know that you trust Shibumi with critical data, and we want to make it easier for you to quickly and confidently grant everyone in your organization access to Shibumi solutions. Shibumi SSO ensures faster solution implementation and employee onboarding which allows your team to begin collaborating quickly and securely.
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Thank you very much for making 2016 one of Shibumi’s best (and busiest) years yet!
Our company has grown significantly to serve you better and our application has matured with clients all over the world relying on Shibumi to execute their transformative programs. These clients have provided fantastic, from-the-trenches feedback – much of which has resulted in enhancements that we’ve already incorporated and introduced via product releases throughout the year.
As you have likely noticed, we focused much of our time on enhancing customization and visualization options to ensure Shibumi matches the style and method that teams are accustomed to when reporting their critical data. These include formatting the header bars on your lists and views, viewing your tabular data in chart format, representing organizational charts from your team’s Salesforce data, and more!
Another key enhancement was the ability to show History. You no longer need to annotate multi-line text fields with author initials and dates to reflect the history of changes within a field. Instead, you can now include a History view showing an audit of your Shibumi content.
We continue to work on enhancements and functionality to let teams better capture and communicate critical program data. One of the most transformational capabilities we introduced this year, was Presentations. With Presentations, you’ll be able to take back the hours you spend aggregating data then tediously copying and pasting content into PowerPoint each time you produce a status report. Once you’ve set up a presentation in Shibumi, the slides stay current with your solution content, ensuring that your information is always accurate and up to date. You can lock the content at any time and publish the presentation – which produces a downloadable PDF that can be shared outside of Shibumi.
As you navigate through Shibumi, you’ll discover many subtle changes and improvements to the product and we’d love to tell you about them all!
We invite you to attend a webinar highlighting the key 2016 Shibumi product releases. Join us to hear how you can take advantage of the new capabilities and learn a few tips, tricks and shortcuts to enhance the value you’re getting from your Shibumi solutions. Click on the link here to register and to add the event to your calendar.
Whether you join the webinar or not, keep the feedback coming! We love hearing from you and are eager to continue improving the product in order to enhance the benefit you’re getting from Shibumi in 2017!
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As many companies attempt to accelerate growth programs, seize market opportunities or re-organize to align to new strategies, they’ve been hindered by the inherent limitations of PPM solutions. These challenges have resulted in the recent emergence of the Enterprise Program & Portfolio Management (EPPM) market space. EPPM goes beyond the PPM tracking of budget to burn and cost allocation; it attempts to connect business benefit realization to the programs a company executes. While EPPM does share many of the capabilities that IT PPM software exhibits, EPPM is focused more broadly across the enterprise rather than focusing success on the completion of an isolated or small group of related IT projects.
Because EPPM solutions facilitate effective strategy execution and business transformation, the software is often used by enterprise program management offices or business transformation offices.
Many companies are facing challenges when executing effective EPPM strategy, with some not even recognizing its availability and trying to stretch inadequate PPM tools to support their strategy execution. The challenges include:
Shibumi provides a customizable EPPM solution that helps you successfully navigate through these challenges. With Shibumi, you can generate a clear dashboard of business metrics that all members of an organization can access. This comprehensive dashboard aligns projects and portfolios, creating discipline around how connected parts come together. The ability to track these business metrics in a collaborative environment enables long term, strategic initiatives and goals to be monitored and executed more effectively.
For more information about Shibumi, please contact email@example.com.
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We’ve all been there, on a Friday, working on a presentation to brief executives on status and progress of a major program. Pulling data from email and spreadsheets, formatting into a set of slides, emailing it to multiple team members for feedback and validation. Typically, this is a monthly or sometimes weekly report. It’s crucially important to communicate, but the whole process wastes huge amounts of time that could otherwise be spent working on the actual program.
From the start, Shibumi wanted to solve this problem. Provide an easy, efficient way to manage the program, from status tracking, to collaboration, to monitoring the business benefits. Building on our enterprise program management platform, we’ve developed Presentations.
Presentations are a native ability to pull data from portfolios, programs, initiatives, really anything being tracked in Shibumi, and place it into a set of slides. You can create template presentations that include as many slides as necessary. Now, your monthly presentation is live and connected to your data. Sharing it with executives is a single click away.
You have full control of what gets shared
One advantage of manually creating these presentations is the control it provides. By creating them manually you know exactly what data is being shared and how it looks. We made sure you still get that same level of control.
Each slide in a Shibumi presentation can be locked. Once it’s locked, even if the source data changes, it won’t change in that slide. In addition, slides can be locked at different days and times. So, similar to how it’s done today, you can finalize the deck over time.
Once the slides are locked and ready, the entire presentation is Published. Once published there is a unique link generated. This is what you send to your audience. This is the final version of the presentation, the one that has been reviewed and validated by the team.
Create engaging presentations
Another advantage of manually creating a presentation is the artistic control you have. Highlighting information, calling out key points and adding graphics and charts. These all help you tell your story and communicate in an engaging way.
Building on our already great formatting and charting features, we’ve added even more. You can already format your tables, add color and various charts, but now you can also add images and have even more control of text formatting. This is all controlled from a canvas that allows you to place these elements exactly where you want in the slide.
Promoting consistency and saving time
Based on initial feedback from beta customers this has saved days from their reporting cycles, all while providing a consistent approach to briefings.
For more information ask your Shibumi admin or connect with us directly!
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We’re excited to share some changes we’ve been working on at Shibumi.
This past year has been ground breaking for us and our customers. Shibumi has been adopted as a standard in many organizations. The way customers are using the platform has become more diverse, providing us valuable insight. We have been very busy incorporating all of your feedback over the past few months, culminating in our upcoming release.
We’ve made improvements to just about every aspect of Shibumi, but we’d like to highlight a few key areas that you’ve asked about.
When working with customers, what we’ve heard time and time again is:
So, we started with a reimagining of the interface. We wanted to strip away what’s unnecessary and hide what’s rarely used, leaving our customers a concise, simple to use interface.
This is most obvious in the top bar and (lack of) the left navigation. What used to be a text-heavy set of navigation links on the top of each page is now a slim bar of icons, providing the same options.
This allows your information to take center stage, with navigation links taking minimal space.
As you navigate through Shibumi, you’ll discover more subtle changes and improvements to the aesthetics and usability.
We’ve also spent long hours adding more customization options. This includes everything from viewing your data in charts and graphs to controlling the structure and layout of your views in addition to improved formatting options like background and font colors.
Take our new list customization options as an example:
You can now select a set of columns and format them as if you were in a spreadsheet. Text rotation, colors, size, number format, also can be customized.
Given that the vast majority of our customers are coming from existing office tools, we strive to give them similar flexibility in Shibumi. But of course, with all the power of a database driven platform behind it.
These changes are just the beginning and we’re excited for 2016 and the opportunities we have in front of us. Stay tuned for more exciting announcements and as always, keep the feedback coming.
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Sitting on a plane en route to Dreamforce this year, you couldn’t help but overhear the chatter from dozens of sales execs, partners and others. Everyone was excited to tell their war stories about time in the field, customer hassles and internal roadblocks they had to face while trying to close a deal. Striking up a conversation with the woman sitting next to me was a good chance to ask about the pain points in her organization and at the previous companies she worked for. While there are many stories that will make an account executive cringe, few garner the reactions you’re bound to get when you ask about a company’s quarterly business review (QBR) process.
While many AEs cringe at the thought of prepping and sitting through their QBRs quarter after quarter, the process provides value to the organization. Sales leaders get the opportunity to review performance, discuss goals and engage in sales territory planning. Quarterly Business Reviews give a great excuse for coaching on the ways and means to execute sales processes more efficiently in the coming quarter. Unfortunately, the process has become a time suck. Reps waste days out of the field and valuable selling time pulling reports, parsing data and producing presentations that are likely never looked at again after the hour long review. Look familiar?
The data becomes stale before you even start the review and it’s only valuable for the immediate discussion. You may come up with some great ideas for expanding your territory or get some great tips, but where’s the follow-through? Too often, QBRs lead to increased insight into what a rep could and should be doing to grow their business only to have the next quarter’s QBR seem like groundhog day as all of that insight gets buried in a file folder somewhere.
It gets worse if your QBR isn’t as simple as the example shown above, it’s not uncommon to see company’s with QBR decks that span 20-30 pages. As more data and more views are required, the time and pain to complete a QBR jumps exponentially for members of the sales team. You’ve already input all of the data into Salesforce – shouldn’t that count for something? It’s time for a change.
Make your QBR Useful:
Having been through the process ourselves, we think there is a better way to leverage data you ALREADY have to give managers the insight they need. Shouldn’t you focus more time on actually strategizing how you should grow your territory instead of spending frustrating time pulling reports and formatting PowerPoint?
Utilizing Shibumi for your sales execution cuts down on time preparing by automatically integrating with all of your Salesforce data and account information. Quarterly Business Reviews become less static and are able to be monitored and reviewed throughout the quarter to ensure you get the coaching you need to stay on track. Automation has been working throughout every aspect of the sales process to speed onboarding, document delivery, customer education and countless other tasks – don’t you think it’s time you took a step to automating your QBRs too so you can spend more time driving revenue growth for your territories?
See how Shibumi can save you time and money and turn your Quarterly Business Review into something that helps you and your team succeed throughout the quarter.
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One of the most difficult parts of building a sales force is bringing new account executives up to speed on your company’s sales process. As we mentioned in a prior post, having an established sales process is critical to your ability to measure your sales effectiveness and try new approaches. A written sales process also allows you to efficiently and effectively transfer that knowledge rapidly to new reps. Your team may possess raw sales talent, but if they’re not trained on your process, a lot of that talent may go to waste.
When a new sales rep is brought onboard, every company spends (or should spend) a considerable amount of time coaching and training on the product. Naturally, this makes sense and will be crucial to unlocking the talent of the rep. You shouldn’t anticipate closing many sales unless your reps have a firm understanding of the product, the customer’s pain points and the competition’s offerings. Often overlooked in training though is the process your company has established to actually close a deal and recognize the revenue.
As almost all sales reps can attest to, their first few deals always progress slower than they should. New reps inevitably struggle navigating all the hurdles put in place to actually recognize a deal. Getting the customer onboard is just one aspect, understanding the batch of forms, approvals and other legal and finance-related steps is another. While a new rep is selling the product, they also have to run a gauntlet of internal processes. Running a parallel process can be the difference between closing a deal by quarter-end and having it slip. As most have learned, time kills all deals.
What do I do now?
As a sales manager, even with naturally talented reps, this is the question that will continually arise during the first few sales cycles for all of your new reps. If it’s not your time that is being requested, it will invariably be that of several other reps in your company that are taking time away from their selling to help navigate the process for the new hire.
Sales execution platforms like Shibumi can help tie all of this together and save your team a ton of time while tying everything back to your existing Salesforce.com data. Further, you’ll be in a position to determine where bottlenecks or unncessary steps might be in your process that are hindering your reps’ ability to do their jobs effectively. Yours deals should close more smoothly and your reps will be confident in the process.
See how Shibumi can help you onboard faster and keep your new reps asking the question “Who do I close next” instead of “what do I do now?” Try Shibumi’s built in sales templates or develop your own to keep your team focused on what matters most – closing the deal.
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As any sales veteran will attest, having a repeatable sales process is a huge benefit. While many rely on natural skill, a sales plan honed from experience is the most effective way to win business. Bottling up what has worked and avoiding what hasn’t greatly increases the chances of winning more customers without wasting time or money.
A Harvard Business Review article from earlier this year by Steve W. Martin highlighted a survey showing the techniques employed by high-performing sales team. Notably, among the high performers, was the presence of a structured sales process – which also tended to be absent from the underperformers.
Establishing a written sales plan turns a hunch into a highly repeatable and data driven process that can be refined and scaled to maximize your sales growth. Taking three easy steps that form the basis for Shibumi’s sales execution process can have you on your way to joining the ranks of the high performers.
Whether you know it or not, you probably already have a sales plan. If you’re a small organization, it might be based on that hunch that has helped your first few reps sniff out deals and get them across the finish line. Don’t waste that knowledge! Putting down the concrete set of steps, actions and interactions that helped you win that first deal can be critical to winning more. It can also be critical to helping you clone your top performers and bringing new reps up to speed much more quickly as you scale to become a larger organization.
If you’re a large sales organization without an established process, congratulations – you’re one of the few. If you have one, however, there still may be room for refinement and improvement to tweak multiple approaches for different products and environments. Having a plan is the key to improving and leads us to step 2.
The adage that “you can’t improve what you can’t measure” rings as true in sales as it does in every other line of business. Now that you’ve established a solid plan based on some experience, it’s time to validate it. When used properly, Salesforce.com and other CRM solutions are incredible tools for collecting data on your prospects, opportunities, pipeline and sales cycle. Now is the time to put that to use.
Having the data at your fingertips to slice and dice based on changes in your approach is key to understanding the critical elements of your plan. For some organizations, increasing your closed won will be the only metric that matters and data will be easily available to report on. More complex metrics that involve multiple parties or roll-ups may require a little more digging. Fortunately, with many tools available to pull data directly from your CRM, the old days of manually running reports and running the calculations by hand are gone.
You may be surprised by the correlations or trends you’re starting to see. Do you close 70% of the deals where your reps got real world data from your customer (step X in your close plan) but only 20% when they don’t? This is incredible insight into how prospects see value in your product and how you may be able to nurture deals that will happen and cut loose the prospects that are just wasting your time.
A diagnosis of what’s working (or sometimes more importantly – what’s not) is great to show you where you have room for improvement, but unless you adapt more of the good stuff you may not see your numbers growing as quickly as they can. As new reps join with ideas of their own or you launch new products or into new markets your plans and strategies will necessarily change. Having a plan with quantifiable data and key performance indicators (KPIs) backing it up allows you to experiment and expand on the parts that are working. Having the data that proves something is making a difference provides a tremendous opportunity for coaching your reps. That data also allows you to continuously assess and rework your plans to hit your revenue growth targets quarter after quarter.
Lather, rinse, repeat.
Take a look at Shibumi today to see how we can kickstart your process into high gear! See results instantly with our pre-designed sales plan templates or customize your own. Shibumi will help you leverage your CRM data more effectively and drive the results you expect from your team.
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