Industry: Utility | Power Grid Operation
Location: New York
Revenue: $40M

FasTrack Microsoft PPM

“The NYISO was very satisfied with our onsite training and deployment for MS Project Server. Although we had a very aggressive schedule, the knowledge and expertise of EPM allowed the NYISO to easily transition what we needed and wanted into manageable project files and templates. Wayne did a terrific job of researching our needs in detail, and giving the NYISO feedback on our business objectives and the Project Management Department insight on all facets of PPM.”

Project Manager


Microsoft PPM Meets Six Sigma Quality Management at Major New York Energy Utility


The New York Independent System Operator (NYSIO) reliably manages New York’s power grid and its competitive wholesale energy markets. It does so by coordinating and directing the flow of electricity over the state’s high-voltage transmission system which consists of 11,000 circuit miles, 760 power generation units, and 1,400 mega-watts of additional power created through improved generator ability. NYISO is charged with meeting the most stringent standards in the nation, under strict regulatory oversight. It plans the power system for the future, over one, five, and ten-year studies, to maintain long term reliability, reduce congestion on the transmission system, and meet public policy needs calling for new transmission, such as lines to bring renewable resources to customers. Accordingly, the Project Management Office (PMO) within NYSIO manages many critical public works projects that must maintain the highest levels of quality assurance and control to achieve all of the above business requirements.

Client’s Challenge

Build Six Sigma Quality Management into Prospective PPM Technology

The PMO at NYSIO wanted to streamline its project management efforts by placing all its vital initiatives in a centralized repository using Project Server—the on-premise solution delivered by Microsoft Project Portfolio Management (PPM). But, it had one major reservation: the utility was managing its quality control process using a data driven improvement cycle—Six Sigma—and they needed a PPM technology that could seamlessly and effectively incorporate this process in Project Server. Six Sigma is a set of techniques and tools for process improvement made popular by Jack Welch as his central business strategy at General Electric in 1995. It seeks to improve the quality of the output of a process by identifying and removing the causes of defects and minimizing variability. Each Six Sigma project carried out at NYSIO was required to follow a defined sequence of steps emphasizing an iterative Six Sigma cycle known as DMAIC—Define, Measure, Analyze, Improve, and Control. It was very important to the stakeholders at NYSIO that any PPM technology adopted by the organization have this quality management process baked right in.

The Solution

Wrap Microsoft Project Server with a Six Sigma

To deliver a fully integrated Microsoft PPM solution with Six Sigma quality management, NYSIO turned to EPM Solutions for assistance. Greg Winterhalter, VP of Professional Services, recommended that NYSIO implement Project Server with a seamless customization that he believed would work perfectly to achieve the Six Sigma requirement. “We were very excited about a tool that Microsoft developed that could deliver all the quality management features that NYSIO had in mind,” Greg recalled. The specific tool provides an integrated set of software components, templates, and best practices guides customized for implementing Six Sigma initiatives across an organization. Leveraging the power of the Microsoft Office System, the software helps quality management professionals more effectively manage large numbers of Six Sigma projects concurrently. while generating combined business intelligence that related Six Sigma data to all corresponding projects in the enterprise.

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