Hackensack Meridian Health


As a leading not-for-profit healthcare organization, Hackensack Meridian Health has been redefining how ‘health’ and ‘care’ work together to better the local and global community.

Hackensack Meridian Health took form after 2016 merger between two major hospital networks. Boasting 11 hospitals across 7 counties, including two children’s hospitals and 120 other locations, Hackensack Meridian Health provides accessible healthcare to millions.


Despite it’s significant size of over 34,000 employees, Hackensack Meridian Health lacked a defined Project Management Office (PMO). With the pending merger on the forefront, there was a strong demand internally for a project and portfolio management platform capable of supporting the new PMO function to gain oversight into projects across the organization.

The newly established PMO was tasked with improving consistency across projects, establishing project governance, better communication within and across teams and by reinforcing PPM and PM best practices.


As an experienced group managing many projects, adoption and ease of migration were crucial in any solution for Hackensack Meridian Health. Their current project list contained over 150 projects containing 20,000 tasks across the organization. With the size and scale so rapidly increasing, usability was critical factor in their tool selection process.

“We had used a variety of project management tools and wanted something that was easy to adopt”                 – Chris Papaleo, HackensackITO Project Manager

The incoming PMO had experience with many of the tools on the market, but internal requirements dictated Project Online as the core PPM software.

“It had the PMO a bit apprehensive. It’s a good project by project tool, but it wasn’t a PPM tool. The first week, I looked and was surprised how far it’d come since I last used it 10 years ago but it wasn’t 100% what we needed. I looked at companies like yourselves to bridge the gap.” – Chris Papaleo

After research into PPM software to bridge the gaps in Project Online and a thorough evaluation of companies experienced in migration support, Hackensack Meridian Health found the perfect solution in Project KickStart for their PPM needs.


Hackensack Meridian Health leveraged their strong project management experience and reached out to Wicresoft for a comprehensive PPM platform.

The rollout began with a detailed walkthrough of functionality in Project KickStart and Project online as it maps to the PMO requirements. Wicresoft Architect worked closely with the team to install and configure Project KickStart solution on O365 with Project Online. The Architect acted as a trusted advisor to assist with best practices and configuration decisions. Once the configuration was complete, the Architect conducted training for Project Managers and team members. Within a week of training, the PMO could take the core of Project KickStart and adopt it. Implementation was an iterative process that stimulated the project management processes and provided additional opportunities. As their experience with the platform increased, additional teams adopted the platform across different departments.

 “I am used to implementing new PMO solutions. I’ve seen a lot of it and there’s always been a lot of challenges with it. Project KickStart was on the other end of the spectrum.” – Chris Papaleo


The previous PPM platform was unreliable, crashed on a regular basis, and lacked uniformity within different work groups. Through implementation of Project KickStart in combination with Microsoft Project Online, there has been significant cost savings, both financially and in work hours saved. The increased efficiency has also improved communication, consistency, and quality amongst projects.

As with all new program rollouts, there was a learning curve. The seamless implementation shortened the adoption loop with the first team fully functional within two weeks. The PMO has found a great rhythm managing 20,000+ tasks with 100s of registered users.

The implementation led to SharePoint integration being added across all business units. The client is hoping to add additional reporting capabilities and analytic monitoring in the next six months.


Office 365

Microsoft Project Online

Project KickStart