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PTC Member Spotlight Shines on VPO

Profile Submitted by VPO

PTC Member News

Since 1984 VPO has worked with clients from a variety of industries, whose businesses are project-intensive. VPO has enjoyed demonstrating that improving the way it manages its projects can dramatically improve its bottom line. Many of VPO's customers have been consulting with them for over thirty years, benefiting from its experience and expertise with Microsoft and Oracle Primavera solutions.

VPO realized that its clients’ project information was not being organized successfully for collaborative use. Many project team members were storing vital documents in disparate places–on a file server, their desktop, an FTP site, in email. . .on cocktail napkins!

And the challenge it found even more interesting was that project information didn’t only need to be shared logically among people on a customer’s internal project team. It was often external collaborators whose project information required the most re-organization.

VPO's approach? Make it simple. In keeping with its company name, Simplex, we simplify the complex.

What VPO's Become

VPO is a secure, easy-to-use, Web-based workspace that project stakeholders use for viewing, privately publishing, and logically routing up-to-date information, and for measuring progress—while streamlining cumbersome processes that commonly diminish success on projects.

By leveraging leading Cloud-based solutions from Microsoft’s Office 365 suite, and combining them with our project management expertise and content, we’ve packaged a scalable project management system that works for small, fast-paced projects as well as for large, complex projects–and for a combination of both. We’re able to deploy VPO quickly by using proven content that can be customized for the client and enhanced over time, to develop a system that is truly built for the customer.

And we take a hands-on approach throughout, to set up our customers and the people they invite into their systems for success, through training and support. We want our clients to be able to focus on what they do best–managing their projects–and leave the administration to us.

The Pittsburgh Technology Council wanted to learn more about VPO. Here's the scoop:

1. Give us some details on VPO Cloud and how it got a focus on project management for the construction industry.

VPO’s first project was Uniontown Hospital, with Burt Hill, and the Pittsburgh team from Stantec. They’d been trying to use off-the-shelf software from Oracle Primavera which we resold at the time and for which we delivered consulting and training services, but we saw that they needed a more collaborative solution. We used our experience and expertise with Microsoft SharePoint to build a new solution that met their needs and exceeded their expectations.

2. Tell us how the platform works and what sets it apart.

VPO is easy to use, because it’s built on the Microsoft 365 platform which many people use regularly anyway. That access point combines with our decades of experience and expertise in project management to produce a solution that facilitates successful collaboration for teams, projects, and portfolios of any size.

3. Has the pandemic/working from home grown interest in the platform?

Since VPO has been Cloud-based from the start, our longtime clients like the University of Pittsburgh have appreciated that their team members were already set up for accessing and routing vital documents and information from home or job sites. It’s made for a smooth and seamless transition—which has been appealing and helpful for new clients as well.

4. What's Your CEO Laura Nee's story and inspiration for founding the company?

Laura was inspired to use her background in software development to provide a creative and customizable solution that would serve the engineering and construction clients we’ve had since 1980s, and help them to grow and thrive.

5. Thoughts on Pittsburgh as a good place to grow a tech company?

Thanks to strong tech-space investment by organizations like the University of Pittsburgh, Carnegie Mellon University, and Google, many people are benefiting from Pittsburgh’s affordability and high quality of life—especially in this time when more and more workers can choose for themselves what the home base for their remote work will be.