Acumen Fuse

Acumen Fuse is a customizable metric analysis and visualization software tool which analyzes schedule, cost, risk, earned value, and project performance.  Acumen Fuse uses metrics to pinpoint problematic areas and activities within a project and then provides solutions for improving project plans and execution strategies based on the problematic areas and activities found during the analyses.  

Acumen Fuse Analyses

 Acumen Fuse software provides the following analyses: ribbon analysis, time-phase analysis, intersection analysis, comparison analysis, schedule analysis, forensic analysis, logic analysis, and benchmark analysis.

Patented ribbon analysis compares results between ribbons by WBS, discipline, activity type, and critical/noncritical activities. Fuse Ribbons can either flatten an entire project into a manageable line of data or flatten groups of activities based on a common attribute.

The phase analysis provides trend information and analysis for multiple time segments suh as years, months, or fiscal quarters. For example, Fuse can find all activities with cost overruns within each month of the schedule allowing the user to compare all months and understand which is the most over budget.

The intersection analyzer can pinpoint activities that are within a specific grouping as well as a specific time phase, which are also included in a specific metric result. For example, the intersection could pinpoint all activities with cost overruns (metric result) that lie at the intersection of a specific time-phase and activity grouping, ( i.e. that are planned for first quarter (time-phase) and are critical (activity grouping)).

The comparison analyzer can compare metric results to pinpoint activities which are included in multiple metric results. For example, when comparing activities that are included in the High Float Duration metric result to those activities which are included in the High Float metric result, the comparison analyzer can cross reference both metric results and identify activities found in just one result or in both.

Forensic analysis identifies variances between two or more schedules, cost estimates, or risk models. This analysis can also be used to compare updated revisions of schedules or differences between contractual baseline schedules and as-builts. The Fuse forensic analyzer searches through multiple schedules, or iterations of the same schedule to identify additions, deletions, and modifications made, as well as to calculate variances in cost, duration, float, ect. between the different schedules.

Path analysis can be performed in Fuse by grouping activities into ribbons based on their path. This type of analysis is useful for identifying areas within a schedule which may be accelerated, finding the longest path and the activities within that path, and for comparing critical paths.

The Fuse Logic analyzer combs through a project schedule to identify logic flaws such as open ends, leads, lags, constrained activities, out of sequences activities, reverse logic, and redundant logic. A redundant link is an added relationship between activities which have already been linked together and therefore unnecessary.  

Reporting with Acumen Fuse

Acumen Fuse software generates the following reports: executive briefing, heat map, project scorecard, ribbon view report, and analysts report.

The executive briefing reporting tool provides users with an automated synopsis of the project’s overall quality and health. The synopsis includes a description of the project’s characteristics, trending information, metric results, and suggestions for improvement.

Fuse Heat Maps gives the user the ability to pinpoint a project’s hot spots and high priority issues. The heat map uses a color and size scale that provides a visual comparison of activities that help to prioritize project amendments.  

The Acumen Fuse scorecard provides scores for activities, ribbons, phases, and projects by combining metric results and rewarding an overall score. This allows for comparing project, activity group, or individual activity scores against one another. For example, multiple bidder schedules could be imported into Fuse and critiqued for schedule quality. Fuse would then score each bid allowing the owner to identify and select the best planned, or highest scoring, bid option.

The ribbon view report allows users to publish their ribbon analysis to Excel, Word, or printed to PDF.  The analysts report runs an Acumen Fuse analysis on individual or multiple projects and generates a view of the projects health over time or by activity groupings.

Industry Applications

Acumen Fuse has applications tailored for the following industries: oil and gas, construction, IT,  government and aerospace defense. Acumen Fuse also has analytical support for the DCMA 14 Point Schedule assessment and the GAO 9 scheduling best practices.

 

Background

Acumen is a privately held project management company headquartered in Austin, Texas.  Acumen developed Fuse project management software and specializes in project management training and risk assessment workshops.   Acumen was founded by CEO Dr. Dan Patterson, PMP, and Chairman Steve Cook. 

Patterson is a leader within the project management industry.  Prior to starting Acumen, Patterson was Executive VP at Pertmaster leading the Americas business unit from inception through to acquisition by Primavera.  Patterson is also responsible for developing a now widely accepted integrated qualitative/quantitative approach to risk analysis through facilitated risk workshops. 

Cook has over 30 years of experience in the project management software industry, co-founding Welcom (WST Corp.) in 1983.  He conceived and co-authored Open Plan, the company's flagship critical path scheduling tool.  In the mid 1990s, Cook took the role of Vice President of Sales. In March 2006, while Cook was President/CEO for Welcom, the company was purchased by Deltek® and he remained as Vice President of EPM Product Management until November 2006.  Welcom received a number of awards and recognition including Inc 500 rankings, Entrepreneur of the Year and PC Magazine Editor's Choice. 

 

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Market Place

Primavera P6 and Microsoft Project books, on-line video training courses and training material available from an internationally recognised publisher and PMI accredited REP. Teach yourself using on-line or book based learning or run your own in-house or public PMI accredited courses.
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