Project Management - News

MasterControl Announces Upcoming Release of Project Management Application for Life Science Companies s

SALT LAKE CITY - May 7, 2007 - MasterControl Inc., a global provider of GxP process and document management software solutions for life science companies, today announced the upcoming release of a powerful application designed to automate project management and connect project team members to ensure improved communication, better control, and faster project completion.

Whether a project is part of a GxP compliance initiative (e.g., design control, computer validation project, etc.) or a new business strategy, every project manager's goal is to successfully implement it in a timely manner and within budget. Many life science companies manage projects with spreadsheets and other tools that require extensive manual effort and prolong a project unnecessarily.

MasterControl Projects™, a part of the MasterControl™ GxP process management software, connects the project plan to assigned tasks, providing automatic updates as soon as tasks are completed. This module manages document-oriented or process-based tasks, including tasks external to MasterControl. It automates task assignment, routing, escalation, and tracking. MasterControl Projects is scheduled for release this summer.

In addition to its robust software solutions, MasterControl offers a continuum of computer validation products and services that address different levels of validation needs based on individual risk assessment. MasterControl makes ?continuous validation? possible for life science companies by dramatically cutting the time, pain, and cost involved in validating a system, reducing the risks of project implementation, and making it easier to validate software upgrades.

Here are the key features of MasterControl Projects:

  • Project Template: Most companies carry out similar projects time and again. For example, a medical device firm would have design control projects for every product line with similar steps involved. MasterControl provides the ability to create a preconfigured template for each type of project to help reduce the time involved in starting a project and for smoother project management. The template automatically includes basic information about high-level project groupings such as design, development, pilot/test, launch, and manufacturing/deployment, with each grouping depending on the prior one. The template includes basic tasks as well as document-based or form-based tasks typically required by the project.
  • Microsoft Project File Import: To optimize the project management process, life science project managers can use MasterControl to complement Microsoft Project. They can create a new project in Microsoft Project and then manage it in MasterControl, including tracking of tasks and monitoring of milestones.
  • Microsoft Outlook Calendar Integration: As project tasks are assigned to users in MasterControl, they can be configured to automatically appear in the user's Outlook calendar. By synchronizing MasterControl project tasks with Microsoft Outlook, users can have a consolidated view of their pending appointments and tasks.
  • Best-Practice Workflow: MasterControl incorporates the different steps of a typical project, a capability critical in projects related to GxP compliance, such as design control and computer validation projects. Through this workflow, a user can:
    • Define a new project;
    • Define tasks and group them accordingly;
    • Define tasks that are dependent on other tasks;
    • Schedule tasks;
    • Assign tasks to users;
    • Assign target date for each task;
    • Escalate tasks after a period of inaction;
    • Route the tasks electronically;
    • Track and monitor tasks electronically; and
    • Approve and close completed project.
  • Project Lifecycle Management: A project typically involves several phases: project definition, planning, execution, and completion. MasterControl provides virtual vaults for effective management of the project lifecycle.
    • Definition and Planning: A new project resides in the draft vault, which allows editing of tasks, schedules, dependencies, etc.
    • Execution: A project in the execution phase moves to the release vault, where tasks are automatically assigned to the appropriate users as defined by the project. Tasks and milestones can be added and modified as needed throughout the execution phase.
    • Completion: When all tasks are completed, the project moves to the archive vault. Completed projects will be available for review as needed.
  • Project Workspace: A user can view a hierarchical tree of tasks and groups of tasks through the workspace. The user can add, delete, and make changes to tasks, dependencies, and target dates. The project workspace also allows the user to easily determine the current status of tasks and project milestones.
  • Filtering Capability: A powerful filtering capability allows users to view tasks by categories: tasks on the critical path, overdue tasks, tasks assigned to a specific user, etc. This feature serves as a critical-path planning tool.
  • Capability to Baseline a Project: Project managers will be able to see how their projects have evolved or expanded because MasterControl archives all changes for easy comparison of the current project with any prior baseline. This can be critical in projects that involve frequent changes such as in design control.
  • Gantt Chart View: This important tool will provide a visual representation of a project's progress. It will illustrate a project's schedule, including start and finish dates, and also show a work-breakdown structure of the project.
About MasterControl

MasterControl Inc. is a global provider of GxP process and document management software solutions for life science companies. The MasterControl™ suite is easy to use, easy to deploy, easy to validate, and easy to maintain. It incorporates industry best practices for automating and connecting every stage of the product development cycle, while facilitating regulatory compliance. By combining an integrated platform with a continuum of risk-based software validation products and services, MasterControl drives down the total cost of ownership and enables customers to extend their investment across the enterprise. Hundreds of companies worldwide use MasterControl for easier compliance, faster validation, and better process management. For more information, visit, or call 800-825-9117.