At Education Development Center, Inc. (EDC), they believe that education is the liberating force in human development. They have been working for over half a century to address the most pressing problems in education and economic development. The non-profit company conducts 250 projects in 30 countries around the world. This massive effort involves a huge amount of content, and synthesizing all of it efficiently and effectively is daunting. Bob Spielvogel, VP Chief Technology Officer at EDC, knew that effective project management was required to keep EDC projects on track and moving forward. “Here at EDC we’re actively working to build a culture of project management,” he said.
Imagine being told that you will never walk again. Ekso Bionics took this worst-case prognosis as a challenge, and made it their mission to help people paralyzed by spinal cord injuries get to a different answer—that they could walk again.
The California-based company was founded in 2005 and is currently taking on the lofty—and admittedly, immensely complicated—endeavor of creating exoskeletons that help paraplegics stand up, walk, and get out of wheelchairs. In the beginning, Ekso used Mindjet to guide the design of their product.
“We needed more than a document repository; we needed a solution that helped us shine a light on potential issues and then map an execution path. Mindjet helps us choose the best design direction to balance safety, design, and schedule risks,” said Karl Gudmundsson, Ekso Bionics’ VP of Marketing.
SensorLink has been manufacturing high-voltage sensors and monitors for utility companies for 25 years. As it grew, they took on more people, customers, and products as they became a global leader in high-voltage monitoring. This growth presented some new challenges. Over 25% of SensorLink’s revenue was coming from overseas, and that meant that getting ISO (International Organization for Standardization) certification was more important than ever. The prep for ISO certification is paperwork-heavy and requires participation from every department. To navigate the process, they needed a solution to dramatically improve communication and collaboration across the company.
Master Black Belt and Technology Leader Chris Haney has been tasked with continuous improvement of the global Six Sigma curriculum at The Dow Chemical Company. Their Diamond Value Consulting Group has been requested to conduct external trainings, demonstrating their reputation in the industry. Haney sought to make brainstorming and project planning across the global organization easier by providing people a common tool for both virtual and in-person meetings. Haney and his colleagues based their decision on the desire to have one platform for the exchange of ideas and the overall time savings that would be realized through efficient processes. “It was an easy decision. Why would I spend my time building the visual components of a map, when Mindjet does that for me already? Other tools are simply inefficient in this regard.”
With its rates capped by government regulators and facing a tight economy, Consolidated Edison Company of New York, Inc. (Con Edison) embarked upon a program to find cost savings through a deep analysis of its internal processes. Discovering all variables affecting workplace process flow would enable targeted, specific, problem-solving improvements to be quickly devised and implemented. The objective was to capture and document all these elements. Using Mindjet mind mapping software to create a Zero-Based Budgeting (ZBB) toolkit was the project management solution.
Scientist Todd Becker leads Genencor International’s Delivery Systems Group, and reports the department’s biggest challenge is managing the ongoing deluge of vendors offering complex and expensive information management solutions. Becker realized that his staff wanted a flexible tool that captures and organizes complex information to disseminate to multiple audiences. It was soon discovered that the need for project management tools extended beyond the R&D department. “We hold a lot of cross-function meetings. Scientists work with business people. Business people, with manufacturing teams. It’s important for us to have the right tools to present new and often complicated ideas to many departments in a format that everyone can understand.”