NEXUS United is a business unit at Valantic, Germany, responsible for the development of technically complex IT projects with a focus on digital commerce. The range of services of the NEXUS United is primarily aimed at midsize and family businesses that rely on technology-based and highly individualized business models.
Often times, businesses refer to NEXUS United for a completely new digital touch to their online shops, including further development, robotic process transformation, and other equally important services. Around 125 experts from the areas of backend development, frontend development, digital transformation, creative services, and digital marketing work in dedicated teams that are allocated to sophisticated eCommerce projects of all kinds.
Founded in 1998, they can now look back on over 500 successfully implemented projects. The growing portfolio of projects have generated a need for a platform that allows for a better perspective on budget and easy track of operations in order to make critical business decisions. As the company with a technical mindset, they'd managed work primarily in Jira. A system was well-esteemed, but it was lacking important reporting elements. Forecast stood out among other solutions, such as Wrike and HelloHQ, for its two-way integration capabilities with Jira and transparency Forecast provides across teams, projects, and operations overall.
Hasta la vista spreadsheets, hello Forecast
In order to scale and grow, NEXUS United knew that they needed a solution that would provide visibility into every detail of the projects and company financials. They were very aware that Jira might not work for the entire company. While many developers love the tool and stay loyal to it, it clearly wasn’t enough for management. In Forecast, they found a solution that catered for collaboration across departments.
To learn more about why NEXUS United has chosen Forecast, we talked to Jurij Pfeiffer, Head of Development with a background in software engineering for larger global companies, such as Siemens and Saatchi. Joining the company, Jurij first turned to spreadsheets to organize the development work and try to get an overview of what was going on, but this wasn't a great long-term solution.
“The bigger picture of how the projects progress according to the plan and budget was nowhere to be found in Jira,” recalls Jurij. “You can’t see where you stand and what part of the project has been delivered either. Trying to fill these patches, we used to resort to spreadsheets, but I knew it would get messy over time.”
Resource management was previously done in spreadsheets – one spreadsheet per team. We needed a system that would replace spreadsheets completely and seamlessly integrate with Jira to provide us with transparency and a real-time overview of our developers.
Driven by these obstacles, Jurij was in search for a platform that could help him get one connected real-time view. The list of requirements wasn’t long, but the overall goal was two-way sync with Jira in order to keep his teams as productive as possible.
Transparency across the project portfolio
NEXUS United consists of several dedicated teams that work on different projects and register time in Jira. Leaving spreadsheets behind and choosing Forecast, they got a single source of truth with a unified view across all their projects that seamlessly connects with Jira.
Now, the projects are connected and instantly reflected in both platforms. All the work developers do and register in a Jira sprint is instantly reflected in Forecast and visualized in rich digital dashboards you can’t find in Jira, such as the Timeline, the Schedule, the Budget, and Reporting. Each perspective has a navigable path so the project manager can drill down to a micro-level if necessary to see the relationships between costs and roles, for example.
NEXUS United management finds the Schedule Project and People view especially helpful to track progress and balance the workload.
Before Forecast, I often needed to ask my team or project managers if things are going according to plan and inquire what the status of the project was. Now I can just look at the platform and get the insights when needed.