TITLE: Agribusiness Develops Innovation Insight with Genius Project

REVIEWER: Ganesan Srinivasan, director of business analysis for Bunge Global Innovation.

BACKGROUND: Bunge Limited is a leading global agribusiness and food company with approximately 32,000 employees in more than 30 countries. Bunge buys, sells, stores and transports oilseeds and grains to serve customers worldwide; processes oilseeds to make protein meal for animal feed and edible oil products for commercial customers and consumers; produces sugar and ethanol from sugarcane; mills wheat and corn to make ingredients used by food companies; and sells fertilizer in North and South America. Founded in 1818, the company is headquartered in White Plains, New York.

PLATFORM: Web browser/SaaS.

PROBLEM SOLVED: Bunge Global Innovation (BGI) is a group dedicated to identifying and implementing new and disruptive technologies that could benefit Bunge’s core businesses. BGI’s projects generally have a two-to-seven-year time horizon. Historically, the project leaders in the group separately managed documentation for their own projects, making reporting on project status and financials complicated and time-consuming, especially when senior executives wanted summary overviews of the full portfolio. To assemble reports, project leaders would send emails and attachments to the Director of Science and Technology, who would spend half a day or more compiling the information into a presentable document. With the Genius Project portfolio management software from Genius Inside, all of our project information is in a central database, making it easy for any member of the team to track our progress as a group, access information for their work, and report it to senior management whenever it is requested.

PRODUCT FUNCTIONALITY
: We have customized Genius to provide senior management with dashboard views that they can access at any time. They will be able to see at a glance the projects we are working on, the status of each project, and the budget for the current and future years. Executives are able to view Gantt charts on any project. The directors in the group can have all the relevant information to monitor the progress and to prepare reports for Bunge’s senior managers.

STRENGTHS: The software is an ideal way to consolidate project information that had previously resided with individual project leaders. Now all data, documents and budget information is in one place and easily accessible to project leaders and directors. Better documentation, achieved through Genius, will allow for better analysis and efficiency in management of our project portfolio.

WEAKNESSES: We had to customize Genius to generate the budget information in a familiar Excel spreadsheet format. We also had to customize project dashboard views.

SELECTION CRITERIA: Since our European R&D offices were on Genius Project, we decided to go with the corporate standard versus considering other software.

DELIVERABLES: Gantt charts indicate tasks and timelines for each project. The Stage Gate funnel displays the list of projects and indicates the stages they are currently in. The Budget view provides budgets by project or by month and has been customized to provide an Excel report of the budget and actual spend by project and month for any given year.

VENDOR SUPPORT: We’ve received very good support from Genius Inside. Whenever we’ve had a problem, we send them a screenshot along with a description of the problem and they get right to work on it. Since their support is based in Geneva, there’s a slight delay there, but overall they’re very responsive.

DOCUMENTATION: The documentation could be improved. On the positive side, Genius Inside did develop documentation for us, which we could probably fall back on if we needed to.

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