A new level of control and visibility

Posted on September 22, 2017 by Mark DiGirolamo

We’ve had a busy summer and capped it off with a bang! Our latest release includes a handful of really useful enhancements, but we’d like to highlight two.

  1. Improved reporting & dashboarding
  2. More efficient design controls

Improved reporting & dashboarding

A big advantage of Shibumi is how we allow you to organize your information anyway you like, in any hierarchy that makes sense. Shibumi is completely flexible and our customers have taken advantage of this. Everything from simple Program -> Initiative structures, to complex multi-level, matrix’d structures. But, one thing had always been difficult, reporting across the full hierarchy.

Let’s take, for example, a structure like Portfolio -> Program -> Initiative -> Milestone -> Activity. We see there are 5 levels in this structure. Generating a view that included information from all 5 levels has historically been difficult. But, no longer. We now allow you to generate reports and views that include any information from any level.

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Building off the ability to pull in data from any level of the hierarchy is to include it in advanced charts and graphs. With our metric timeframe views you can quickly add data overtime, for instance monthly data over a year, add any columns of data from the hierarchy and group the information into logical buckets. The chart will now respect your groups and add them as stacks in the bar chart. This makes it really easy to flip perspectives and slice the data in any way.

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Both of these features make it much easier to analyze and identify trends in your data and allow stakeholders to make better and more informed decisions.

More efficient design controls

A big part of what makes Shibumi so powerful is how easy it is to get data into the system. With our auto-save features, copy and paste from excel, bulk edit, and others, adding data is a snap. But, we’ve heard from customers they’d like more control over the layout of their forms to make more efficient use of screen real estate. We heard you and love how you think! So, we now offer more layout controls of your forms. Place the form anywhere within a page, size it to your liking and set the location of the field labels. This allows you to create beautiful page layouts that can include forms, charts and tables in a single view.

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* Bonus item for our customers down under!

For some of our larger customers, data sovereignty is a critical issue. For those in Australia, we’ve added a data center in country.

As always, keep the feedback coming. For more information ask your Shibumi admin or connect with us directly!

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Advanced Roles is Here!

Posted on August 4, 2017 by Mark DiGirolamo

We’re excited to announce our release of advanced roles in Shibumi!

This release will support creation of custom roles, assigning access rights, filling roles from lists and views, and more… This release sets us up to greatly streamline how you invite team members in, set their access and visibility rights and capture which role they fill!

But, we’ve worked really hard making this transition seamless. You don’t have to make any major changes right away. You can determine the timeline around how you incorporate this new functionality into your templates. Having said that, there are some immediate changes you’ll see in Shibumi.

Changes you’ll see right away

Follower role is changing to Viewer: Followers will now be called Viewer.

No more Shared With: Shared With was a rarely used feature that allowed an item to be shared with someone, while not giving that person a specific role.

Changes to discussions: Going forward, if you can see an item in Shibumi, you can see its discussions. There is no longer a need to have a formal role on an item to view discussions. 2 points of detail: notifications of discussions will only be sent to people with a formal role and discussion roll-ups will only be visible to people with a formal role.

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Next Steps

We recommend connecting with your account manager to discuss how to best leverage our new roles functionality and plan out how you’ll incorporate it.

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Shibumi announces SSO authentication

Posted on April 26, 2017 by Mark DiGirolamo

cloudFor 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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Simplify your Executive Briefings

Posted on September 16, 2016 by Mark DiGirolamo

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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.

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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.

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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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Introducing the new Shibumi

Posted on February 22, 2016 by Mark DiGirolamo

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.

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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:

  1. It has to be simple and intuitive, no training necessary
  2. Allow me to tailor and configure it to match our existing views and dashboards

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.

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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:

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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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Tell your story using Shibumi

Posted on November 21, 2014 by Mark DiGirolamo

Working with our customers over the last year, we’ve reinforced our belief that effective communication is key to managing goals and initiatives. Teams are constantly spending precious hours updating management on progress and revising expectations.

Most often, people fallback to PowerPoint when they need to do briefingsor communicate progress with a large group; however, ’duplicative work’, ‘instantly out of date’, ‘time consuming’ is what we most hear about PowerPoint.

In response to this we’ve added a suite of features to replace the one off presentations.

Improved Dashboards

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To craft a story, you may want to highlight certain details such as specific milestones, KPIs or status messages. Giving access to the entire initiative or goal can cause information overload for a viewer. Dashboards are meant to simplify the views and display a subset of information. Combined with Shibumi’s custom sections, you have a powerful tool for communication.

Once the dashboard is built, invite others to view it. Presto, no more one off, manually created presentations. As you update your plan, the dashboard updates instantly increasing the timeliness of information and decreasing your workload.  And with Shibumi’s advanced security features you can tell your story internally or externally with complete confidence that you remain in control.

Custom Sections

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Part of being able to tell your story is having control over layout. Being able to highlight goals in the top right, metrics in the bottom left, a scorecard right in the middle. This all plays to guiding a viewer down a narrative.

In support of this the Shibumi interface is now based on custom sections. Custom sections give you complete control over how the page is layed out and where information appears so you can determine what, when and how your viewers are consuming the information you want to share.

With custom sections you can resize, drag and drop, add custom labels and more.

Get started by creating an initiative and clicking the ‘Add Section’ button.

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Advanced Reporting has come to Shibumi

Posted on October 1, 2014 by Mark DiGirolamo

Every organization struggles with how to make sense of and manage the massive amount of information generated each day.  This information includes your strategic goals, the measures you use to determine success and the initiatives your working towards. With the latest release Shibumi makes it simple to generate tabular reports and heatmaps to analyze this information and make it actionable.

Advanced Reports with a few clicks

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With advanced reports in Shibumi it’s easy to create tabular reports with a few clicks.

  1. Select what you would like to report on (Goals, Initiatives, Projects, etc…)
  2. Define any additional filters you would like
  3. Add/Remove any columns of data in the report
  4. Click Save

Adding and removing columns is a snap. Click the (+) on the far right on the label row and pick which ones you’d like to add. Shibumi scans the contents of the report and presents you with all the available columns in a simple pick list.

Reports + Templates: Creating powerful management views

When you combine our recently added templating functionality with reporting you get a powerful combination. As you define items in Shibumi based on templates, the reports are even easier to generate, because they all share the same basic attributes.

Take, for example, a project template. Projects can share the same phases and health measures such as budget, scope and timeline to ensure a standard method of evaluation. As you add projects into the portfolio, the reports can automatically pick up your new metrics to give you enhanced visibility into performance in seconds.

Using reports to create tailored lists

Another use of reports is to create tailored views into Shibumi for each user. A user has a set of goals and initiatives she’s responsible for. She has identified the key metrics she uses to gauge performance and she would like all this complied into a simple grid for a one-stop view into her world.  With reports she can now have that exact view, making it much easier for her to interact with all of her relevant data in one place.

She can even manage the data directly from the report with inline editing and our recently introduced preview pane, saving her time and effort and letting her see how changes impact her results.

A game changer

Advanced reporting in Shibumi represents a leap in the types of insights and views that can be generated.  Take a look for yourself. Click ‘Reports’ on the left to get started.

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Introducing, the Preview Pane

Posted on July 21, 2014 by Mark DiGirolamo

A major aspect of Shibumi is the business context it provides our customers. When things are organized and logically related to each other, the entire organization has a better understanding of the larger picture.

We’re always working on new ways to better provide context and that’s why we’re so excited about the preview pane. The preview pane, simply put, is a way to preview an item without leaving your current view.

It’s all about context

Let’s say your looking at a partner plan for the organization. This plan may include some business metrics around leads and sales from partners and a list of current partners. You see the leads metric is trending down, which prompts you to want to look through a few individual account plans.

Without having the leave the overall partner plan, the preview pane let’s you take a peak at each individual account plan, while still providing the full context.

The benefits of this are two fold. One, it allows you to get to information much faster, previewing a list of items can be done in seconds. And two, it better supports the thought process of most people. You see an at risk item, preview it, get your answer, move onto the next item.

Initial feedback has been great, and we’re sure you’ll love it too! Take a look now.

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Shibumi just got a whole lot faster!

Posted on July 21, 2014 by Mark DiGirolamo

You’ve been asking for it, and now, it’s finally here. Multi-select!

We’ve seen some pretty impressive things from our customers. The amount of stuff they’re managing in Shibumi has been amazing.  As a result, the ability to manage all that stuff in a faster more effective way has been high on the enhancement list. The single most requested item has been multi-select to perform the most common actions on many items at once.

Give it a try for yourself! You can now mark complete, move, copy and delete en masse!

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Jumpstart your Initiatives with Templates

Posted on July 21, 2014 by Mark DiGirolamo

Repeatability is a mantra we often hear, and for good reason. Defining a consistent approach allows a company to scale, sets expectations, and empowers all involved. When talking about the initiatives a company is targeting, repeatability is critically important.

To support this in Shibumi we’re releasing templates. Templates will allow you to capture your best practices into a package that can be used over and over again.

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Anatomy of a Template

Templates in Shibumi are extremely flexible and meant to capture all aspects of an initiative. They include:

  • The standard set of participant roles
  • The performance measures used to gauge progress and health
  • The best practice set of activities needed to execute
  • Additional next level template definitions

Applying this across the organization

The last item is really where the power of our templates is exposed. Let’s take a simple example of a program portfolio.

  • The Portfolio – This can be based on a template that includes standard metrics such as budget, cost and ROI.
    • Initiatives / Projects – Each initiative or project in the portfolio can be created using one or more templates containing standard metrics that roll up to the portfolio level so tracking progress is a breeze.
      • Phases / Milestones – The initiative and project templates can contain standard phases or milestones so that your best practices are followed.

This is just one example, but we at Shibumi are applying this to many types of organizations.

Along with our consulting partners, we’re defining templates for:

  • Sales
  • Marketing
  • Operations
  • Finance

Really, the possibilities are endless. If you’d like to know more contact us and let’s start defining your standard approach!

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