Robert C. McCue, P.E.
Recently, MDC Systems® made the jump from Primavera P3 (version 3.1) to P6. However, the landing was a little rough- initially, erroneous information was received from a Primavera representative and then outside IT consultants had to be brought in to resolve issues with the server installation. If the installation experience is any indicator, it seems likely that P6 will require more IT overhead on an ongoing basis. This is in addition to the learning curve for the new features and capabilities of P6.
MDC Systems® has been using Primavera to analyze and manage projects since the days of DOS (Disk Operating System for non-geeks and newbies). The advent of Windows and the GUI (Graphical User Interface) versions of Primavera Project Planner, through version 3.1, afforded an easier scheduling experience for the user. It is this experience which has allowed Primavera to grab the lion’s share of the market for project management software.
Currently, P3 has a huge base of users who hesitated to make the jump to P4, then P5 and now P6. The reasons vary, but likely center around not wanting to change for the sake of change, especially when the current program is familiar and more than satisfies the needs of the organization. In addition, a company will have to weigh the pros and cons of converting its P3 schedules to P6 format. Making the decision to jump to P6 is not easy. Some may decide to wait until Primavera releases P7 or P8 or P?. But, for those that make the jump, it would be prudent, for now, to keep one foot in P3.