A Project Portfolio Management, MI and BI solution for the world’s largest STM publisher

The Context
Our client, Elsevier (part of RELX), works across ~280 offices in 47 countries. The business is split in to 5 divisions and faced challenges in the timeliness, quality and consistency of its project portfolio MI. Mirabilis was contracted to develop a data-driven solution that would meet the requirements of a wide range of stakeholders across the business, and to design and implement a change management plan that would realise the intended benefits.

The Client Aims

Elsevier decided to use Microsoft Project Online (POL) as its project portfolio management platform, using Microsoft Power BI (PBI) to provide MI and BI up to and including c-suite stakeholders. Its aims were to:

  • Configure a scalable and replicable PMO solution based on POL and PBI
  • Produce a suite of MI reports linked to multiple datasets across the business
  • Create a POL / PBI Centre of Excellence (COE)
  • Deliver a Change Management plan, including training, support and marcomms

The Service Engaged

Mirabilis provided expertise in POL and PBI configuration, training and support, the development of the COE, including its training and support resources, and Change Management expertise including the development of a network of PMO Champions and a Guild intranet site for training and knowledge transfer purposes.

Management Information and Business Intelligence

Our MI and BI Service is bespoke, and can form part of our Services in Change, Programme and Project Management, or Market Research, or can be commissioned for bespoke purposes. The expertise drawn on for this project included:

  • Management Information reporting
  • Business Intelligence dashboards
  • PMO platform design and build
  • MS Project Online implementation
  • MS Power BI implementation
  • Big Data Analytics
  • Data Transformation
  • Change Management, training, and support for each of the above

The assignment was successfully completed with the following deliverables:

  • 4 active (and linked) divisional PMOs
  • >800 POL users
  • ~ 450 projects being managed across all PMOs
  • Suite of MI and BI dashboards used for variety of daily, weekly and monthly reporting
  • POL Centre of Excellence
  • Growing network of POL and PBI champions
  • Rollout of PBI to ~25,000 users across RELX
  • Creation of a COE online Guild for ongoing training purposes


Elsevier achieved its desired outcome of a tech-centric project portfolio management solution that linked disparate datasets to serve the needs of a large group of culturally-diverse and geographically-dispersed beneficiaries. This led to significant efficiencies in reporting and a quantifiable ROI through its ability to redeploy a number of staff into higher value activities.