EPM Live is a cloud-based enterprise work management solution by Upland Software. This leading project portfolio management program was originally created by LMR Solutions in 1999. The Microsoft SharePoint-based software was developed to ensure that businesses operate at peak proficiency through improved productivity levels. The company also provides an on-premise solution and works for all business types and sizes.

Over 5,000 customers worldwide currently use the software. Big-name clients include:

  • Jack in the Box
  • Toyota
  • FedEx
  • NASA
  • McGraw-Hill
  • Kossuth Regional Health Streamlines

EPM Live received the "Microsoft Partner of the Year" award four times for its excellence in best practices and competency regarding project management solutions.

EPM Live was one of the first companies to build and offer project management software. As such, it is well versed in what it takes to for teams and companies to effectively see a project through from start to finish.

Headquartered in Austin, Texas, with a secondary headquarter in London, England, and with operation centers located in:

  • Carlsbad, California
  • San Francisco, California
  • Lincoln, Nebraska
  • Cambridge, Massachusetts
  • Iselin, New Jersey
  • Laval, Quebec, Canada

The software allows for portfolio management, scheduling, cost management, resource management, risk management, project change requests, time tracking and service requests.

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The Good

  • Custom processes
  • Integrations
  • Built-in timer
  • Communication
  • Free trial

The project management tools offered by EPM Live supports a number of custom processes. These tools will depend on which version you use of the platform. There are 3 version choices: online, dedicated, and on-premise.

EPM Live features a complete app store with third-party applications that can be fully integrated into a user's account. Most apps are free with only a few that come at an affordable cost. Paid additions include Visio web access, audience targeting, user analytics, custom forms, and advanced business intelligence tools. This gives users the ability to customize the platform to fit their unique needs.

Basic project management tools offer Microsoft Office integration, Gantt charts, document management, task lists, resource management, and alerts and notifications. The Professional version of the software offers administration tools to manage schedules, assign resources, create communities, access API and create reports. The Enterprise version provides what-if modeling as well as cost and resource-capacity planning.

EPM Live also provides a built-in timer for tracking hours. Time may be recorded in different categories, such as billable and nonbillable hours. Once a timesheet is completed, a user can generate a report to submit to the project manager for approval.

The platform also provides "What-if" modeling for resources and finances to determine the impact a particular project will have on a company's budget and employees. Targets can be created for these two areas in order to make decisions on how to handle upcoming projects. Managers can create custom dashboards for clients with certain permission levels so reports can be exported and shared with them.

Managers can communicate effectively with team members through activity feeds, shared calendars, project wikis, announcements, and alert notifications. Team members can comment on specific items, contribute to project wikis, and contribute to conversations on the discussion boards.

The company provides a free trial. Plans are affordable, starting at $6/user/month. EPM Live also provides professional services to assist customers with implementation, process development, and more. Deployment services feature quick start success and custom business strategy workshops. The company also provides 24/7 help support by phone or email.

 

The Bad

  • Task setting
  • Product quality
  • Immediate access
  • Learning curve
  • Mobile

Tasks can not be set on a recurring basis nor created via email. Private messages cannot be sent to other users in the platform. The software is also limited in its language capabilities. English German, and Russian are the only supported languages and these vary across the mobile and desktop versions. There are no central file management storage capabilities within the platform or with third-party integrations.

Overall product quality has been a concern for some users. Many modules have defects and are waiting on future improvements. The MyWork component can become unable to load or get caught in bad javascript when more than 50 items are listed in this system area. Users in the past have stated the support team could do better with customer care.

EPM does not give access to its software program to new users immediately. New subscribers have to wait until the company contacts them concerning their order. This can take longer than expected for some businesses, sometimes up to a week.

The software does have a considerable learning curve due to its overwhelming number of add-ons and features. Many users end up dividing their accounts into several community sections that have various capabilities and functions. It will take time to get used to the software effectively. But once you get established, the platform is relatively easy to use on a daily basis. If you are highly familiar with Sharepoint, the learning curve will most likely not be a problem.

Subscriptions for the platform are renewed automatically. These subscriptions must also be purchased through a major credit card. If you forget to manually cancel, you could be charged unnecessarily for unwanted services.

The platform relies heavily on Microsoft products. The company also does not provide mobile applications. Users that are constantly out of the office may find other similar competing project management solutions more suitable for their needs. The only way for mobile users to access the platform while on the go is through the company's website.

The Bottom Line

EPM Live is a robust cloud-based enterprise work management solution for medium-sized or larger business enterprises. The privately held company provides a free trial and plans are affordable for these business types. The Microsoft SharePoint-based project portfolio management software features a complete library of built-in connectors and third-party applications to ensure that businesses operate at peak proficiency through improved productivity levels. The project management tools provided depend on which version is used of the platform.

EPM Live could stand some improvements in minor areas. Certain modules get glitchy but the company is aware of them and working on improvements for future release. The company does not provide mobile applications and would benefit greatly by offering these tools. However, the company is trusted and reliable with 16+ years in the industry.

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