Enterprise Program & Portfolio Management (EPPM)

Posted on September 26, 2016 by Mark DiGirolamo


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:

  • Establishing alignment of multiple teams and executives. While objectives are often communicated through the hierarchy of organizations, horizontal silos optimize according to their own understanding, resulting in misalignment.
  • Providing agility and adaptability of strategy. Simply planning a strategy is insufficient. Strategy must be flexible to withstand setbacks and to support revised priorities.
  • Reaching consistent “understanding”. The simple objective of “communication” is insufficient when it comes to EPPM strategy execution. The true goal should be to ensure that “understanding” is achieved. According to a March 2015 article in the Harvard Business Review, less than one third of senior management report that they fully understand how their organization’s top priorities align with their strategy.
  • Assigning credit where it is due. Recognizing the people who enable successful business transformation is critical to gaining team commitment to results.
  • Enabling executive input on day-to-day details. While escalating every decision to top management is inefficient, key day-to-day decisions require executive input to successfully achieve change.
  • Establishing cross functional agreement. The need for cross team communication and agreement is critical to strategic decision making but this can be difficult when disparate organizations are unaware of who is sufficiently connected to facilitate the agreement.

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 info@shibumi.com.


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Simplify your Executive Briefings

Posted on September 16, 2016 by Mark DiGirolamo


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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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.



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.



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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Quarterly Business Reviews that don’t Suck

Posted on September 16, 2015 by Mark DiGirolamo

Status Quo:

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.

Necessary Evil:

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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Help New Reps Navigate Internal Sales Processes to Speed Time-to-Value

Posted on August 27, 2015 by Mark DiGirolamo

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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Developing a Repeatable Sales Plan to Drive Revenue Growth

Posted on August 18, 2015 by Mark DiGirolamo

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.

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.

1.  Create a Sales Plan Template

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.

2.  Measure your Results Continuously

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.


3.  Adapt your Approach

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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Shibumi Helps Sales Teams Reinvent Quarterly Business Reviews

Posted on April 1, 2015 by Mark DiGirolamo

Shibumi’s sales execution platform is transforming static QBR presentations into actionable plans for driving growth.

Shibumi, the cloud-based leader in business execution, introduced a new turn key sales execution app this week that leverages key sales data from the industry’s most widely-used sales tools. This new app gives sales and marketing leaders increased insight and tools to develop action plans that drive increased pipeline and revenue. Shibumi helps create a consistent approach to execute revenue growth initiatives as well as territory, account and opportunity plans that exceed objectives.

“Having run sales organizations for most of my career, we had success using used our CRM platform to store and manage account, opportunity and forecast information. However, I was always amazed that we were still relying on manual presentations, spreadsheets and documents to do Quarterly Business Reviews, Account Plans and Opportunity Close Plans,” said Bob Nahmias, CEO of Shibumi. “Sales teams are running at 110 percent, they don’t have time to waste. Shibumi automates the aggregation of Salesforce.com data into views relevant to Strategic Initiatives, QBRs, Account Plans and Opportunity Plans and gives sales teams a simple way to communicate a plan to grow pipeline, drive revenue and execute objectives for the current quarter and beyond.”

Salesforce is the world’s No. 1 CRM company and an integral technology for many sales teams. Shibumi’s integration with Salesforce empowers its customers to leverage their pipeline and forecast data on one of the most advanced and scalable platforms for business productivity.

Make QBRs actionable with dynamic plans that drive increased pipeline and revenue

Users of Shibumi are now able to view their sales and pipeline data side by side with dynamic action plans. This unique approach allows organizations to use real time performance insights to refine a plan of action that will improve results. “With Shibumi and Salesforce, I’m able to measure the effectiveness of our region and territory plans and analyze trends to see what is having the biggest impact on our pipeline and revenue. Our sales leaders use this insight to coach our reps on the best practices that will result in consistent performance,” said Chris Lynch, VP, Sales at Alfresco Software. “Our Region and Territory Plans are now active dashboards and action plans that we use to manage the business rather than our old static QBR decks which were quickly out of date and stuck in a folder.”

Increase your ROI on revenue growth initiatives

Every year organizations invest significant resources in key growth initiatives with the expectations of improved performance. Everyone from the executive team to marketing to product development needs to understand the objectives, metrics and action plans that will determine success. With the new integration with Salesforce, Shibumi can help teams across an organization collaborate, track status, automate reports and update plans around key corporate initiatives and teams can get instant feedback on the impact their efforts are having. “Shibumi has allowed us to communicate objectives, collaborate on action plans and measure performance of some of our most important growth initiatives. Prior to Shibumi our team wasted time managing and reporting initiatives in multiple spreadsheets and presentations. I now have more timely information on what’s working to drive sales and we can spend our time executing programs instead or reporting their progress,” said Sandra Moran, Chief Marketing Officer of INTTRA.

Shibumi finally provides a central location for executives, sales and marketing teams to collaborate and visualize the impact of their efforts on their organization’s top line without resorting to countless emails, status meetings and disjointed spreadsheets and presentations.

To learn more visit http://www.shibumi.com

About Shibumi

Founded in 2012, Shibumi is a cloud-based application that provides a secure, central location to manage initiatives and deliver better results. Shibumi reduces the need for time-consuming manual effort coordinating status, impact assessments and performance results and helps teams focus on their most important job – executing. Whether driving new sales opportunities, executing cost optimization or managing a change portfolio, Shibumi helps accelerate the actions that will produce measurable results. Headquartered in San Francisco, Shibumi is a privately-backed company. To learn more about Shibumi, visit www.shibumi.com.

Salesforce and others are trademarks of salesforce.com, inc.

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Shibumi selected for Phorum 2015 Demo Pit

Posted on March 18, 2015 by Mark DiGirolamo



Bring on the cheesesteaks and pretzels! We’ll be in Philadelphia at Phorum 2015.

Shibumi has been selected as one of eight finalists to demo at Phorum 2015. Phorum is an annual technology strategy conference hosted by PACT. The conference features presentations and panel discussions by industry analysts, technology visionaries, and business executives that looks at how emerging technologies such as big data, mobility and cloud strategies factor into the integration of systems, technical support and global security policies.

This years theme, From Silos to Systems: Transforming the Enterprise through Emerging Technology, is exactly what we’ve been working towards since we started. Breaking down silos and fostering collaboration is at the heart of what we do. It’s an honor to be chosen as a finalist and we can’t wait to see what the other finalists have to offer.

Click here to view the full press release and read about the other demo pit finalists.

We can’t wait to meet everyone in Philadelphia April 14th!

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Strategy is nothing without execution

Posted on February 25, 2015 by Mark DiGirolamo

The difference between a wild success and a novel failure is the ability to execute against strategy. In many cases, even if the strategy is flawed, the organization that executes best, wins. I’ve read this so many times that it’s almost become a cliché.

The mechanics of strategic execution is what I’m interested in. And it turns out it’s not that complicated. Ultimately it consists of three simple concepts.

  1. Alignment
    This is where a solid strategy comes into play. If everyone is marching in different directions nothing gets accomplished. Set your goals and get everyone working towards them.
  2. Transparency
    People need to collaborate, stay informed and understand what others are working on. Without transparency you get waste, lots of duplicate effort and even more frustration.
  3. Accountability
    Everyone needs to know what’s expected of them. This means making sure they follow through on what they say, and they know how success will be measured.


Putting it to practice

Taking these three concepts and putting them into practice should be simple and straightforward. For successful execution, everyone has to participate and feel empowered.

  1. Define and communicate the goals & objectives. Make sure they are clearly communicated and that teams and individuals can expand on them and make them their own.
  2. Capture and track the metrics & KPIs. Once the goals have been identified, use metrics to track progress and set your targets to determine success.
  3. Coordinate and manage all the business activity. Marry the goals and metrics to the action plans necessary to realize success.

As a summary, remember: Goals – Metrics – Action Plans

We’ve put this to practice at Shibumi and have done some pretty incredible things.

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Shibumi & Prolocity Consulting Announce Partnership

Posted on February 24, 2015 by Mark DiGirolamo

Actionable insight to how your BPM program should be defined, deployed, measured and monitored

SAN FRANCISCO, CA — Shibumi.com and Prolocity Consulting announced a partnership to deliver a series of offerings that will enable business and IT to accelerate the adoption of Business Process Management (BPM) throughout the enterprise.  Combining the power of Shibumi’s cloud-based business execution platform with Prolocity’s knowledge and expertise for deploying the BPM management discipline, business and process professionals now have a single place to define, measure and manage the execution of BPM initiatives.

“We have observed that the majority of companies struggle to efficiently and effectively deploy their Enterprise BPM program as they progress throughout the plan year.  Timely communication, disciplined oversight and improved reaction time to key program indicators are the essential ingredients that allow our clients to understand why they are not meeting their program objectives and deployment targets,” said Tom Dwyer, Partner at Prolocity.  “It is for this reason we are excited to announce this powerful capability using our proven approach to practicing the BPM discipline, combined with the industry-leading business execution platform to enable our clients to achieve the objectives of their BPM adoption program.”  “Having a firm like Prolocity deploy its expertise in conjunction with Shibumi’s capabilities is a huge win for any organization serious about improving its processes and making sure the changes stick,” said Ken Pellegrino, Chief Strategy Officer of Shibumi.

Defining, Developing and Deploying Strategic BPM Initiatives

Throughout 2015 Prolocity Consulting will demonstrate their approach for introducing the many practice areas that comprise the BPM discipline.  Each practice is defined by clear objectives, critical performance targets and key indicators.  Those practice areas include:

  • Aligning Process Performance to Business Strategy
  • Defining an Enterprise Business Process Architecture
  • Strategic BPM Planning and Adoption
  • Process Discovery, Measurement, Assessment, and Improvement
  • Process Governance

To assist clients with the design, deployment and management of Prolocity’s BPM services, Prolocity and Shibumi will provide service elements within the Shibumi business platform.  For each BPM Service, these service elements consist of goals, objectives, initiatives and tasks with their associated performance targets.  Availability of the Shibumi support for each of these BPM Services will be the subject of future announcements in 2015.

Map key business processes to strategy. Easily communicate process improvement objectives. Define performance targets and initiatives.  Increase transparency and program accountability. Deeply cascade performance targets. Track progress and react to changes in your business and the market.  Gain command of your strategic goals and transform them into actionable components that can be measured and monitored.


Contact your Prolocity or Shibumi Sales representative today to find out how we can enable you to ensure success.


About Shibumi
Founded in 2012, Shibumi is a cloud-based application that provides a secure, central location to manage initiatives and deliver better results..  Shibumi allows enterprises to stay focused on achieving their goals, collaborate, measure impact and adapt plans as circumstances invariably change. Headquartered in San Francisco, Shibumi is a privately-backed company.  To learn more about Shibumi, visit www.shibumi.com.

About Prolocity Consulting

Prolocity Consulting provides business transformation services which align job activities, processes and organizations to enable innovative “process thinking”, operational improvements and alignment of process performance to corporate strategy.  Utilizing BPM as a management discipline, our approach improves company performance by improving the performance of the processes that run that company.  We help our clients meet expectations for a process from both the customer’s and the company’s point of view.  Prolocity Consulting has offices in Sacramento and Boston.  To learn more about our services please visit www.prolocityconsulting.com.

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