Cascade Strategy is a cloud-based project management (PM) solution for businesses of a variety of sizes. The solution is a suite of integrated strategy modules with features such as strategy planning, goal and project management, dashboards and reports, surveys, performance management and human capital management.
Cascade Strategy comes with a strategy planning wizard and a variety of visualization templates that can be customized to fit the project. Users can create and customize a strategy framework and assign goals and projects to individuals. The solution is able to track various parts of a project such as goals, risks, issues and engagement.
Cascade Strategy can be purchased on a per-user, per-month basis. The solution comes with a free collection of training guides, ebooks and templates.
I have been using Cascade Strategy for some time now and I have been very accustomed to it. Cascade Strategy is easy to use and does more than just strategic planning. The simplicity of the software’s layout allows its users to learn it easily. The task management, collaboration, workforce management and project management features are a great plus. Overall, a lot can be done with a single software.
It might be better if the software can be used in different other languages since it can only be used in English, but, it is a small negativity of the software that can be greatly overlooked.
Jim from Texecom Ltd.
Employees number: 201-500 employees
The customer service engagement was what really sets Cascade apart. The team are helpful and quick to reply. They have a very clear set of behaviors that align with their values.
The software is very powerful and flexible. I've not found a platform that consolidates such a wide range of strategy and talent alignment and management tools into one place.
The interface feels a bit dated perhaps.
I spent quite a while evaluating different strategy execution software options. My main issue was that hardly any seemed really designed at strategy, but rather project management. Since Cascade is built for strategy, you don't have to spend time building your own framework before implementing your strategy. It literary took me a few hours from signing up until I had implemented a five-level hierarchy from a business focus-area, down through sub-goals and into actionable steps. Including goal-tracking.
I can honestly say that Cascade is the most promising software tool that I have seen in years.
Ease of use
Seamless integration between higher level strategy and actionable steps
Dashboards and status-snapshots
Very many options and variables, can make some things feel overwhelming.
A little weak on the planning side, would like to see SWOT features that can convert into objectives/goals.
I love how easy and quick it was to implement, and with the available training, it made the process even simpler
Like to see expanded features like multilingual functionality, but I may have not spent enough time exploring it yet
Ross from Russell McLeod Limited
Employees number: 2-10 employees
Introduced significant efficiency gains in relation to performance management and reporting.
tool agility enabled configuration to develop strategy for multiple circumstances (organisation strategy, channel management and joint venture partnership)
Supports engagement, establishes visibility and secures performance accountability, all of which combine to underpin workplace innovation and retain focus on strategy implementation. Reporting environments are agile and facilitate real-time understanding of performance status. Human capital management features enable creation of robust link between contribution and reward.
It is so easy to get started on cascade, set up is pain free - so different compared to the software I've implemented in the past. It immediately combines strategy, accountability, progress, reporting, risk and governance so that you get a quick holistic view of the current status. No other software I've seen does this as effectively.
I think it would benefit in having more 'wins' for the end user. I'm not sure I know what these would look like... but i think it is important to keep working on the end-users experience as well as improving the management view.
The user interface is intuitive and allows for the creation instant, real-time outputs that can be used to assess/track/discuss business strategy without creating standalone PowerPoint slides.
The tool allows for business strategy to be discussed and embraced by the organization, creating clear alignment of goals to strategic pillars and thus allowed for the broader business discuss, interrogate and contribute to the strategic direction rather than having it handed down.
The tool isn't something that can be used half-heartedly. To realize the benefit, it needs to be embraced by the entire organization where possible. This isn't a criticism of the tool itself, more an observation that it needs the buy-in of the organization to make it effective.
Zwanyanya from Mercedes-Benz South Africa
What I liked most about this software is that it can send notifications to everyone that is responsibility for actions and makes them accountable for deliverables.
It is not easy to navigate, especially if there are corrections and updates that need to be made on actions.
will from Cook Medical Australia
as expressed previously...
Anecdotally, I hear that there are so many great features and so much to learn and just NOT enough time to devote!
I'm therefore keenly aware, via, a previous employee here at CMA who was instrumental during the initial rollout of cascade ... that I have a Ferrari at my disposal and I'm driving it like a Holden :)
Its very intuitive and allows the user to comfortably navigate many platforms without being anxious about making irreversible mistakes!
Please be aware that, "these are my personal views and not those of Cook Medical"
Carlos from Quifatex
Employees number: 1,001-5,000 employees
The alignment between strategy and projects, its very easy to understand how the strategic objetives align with the projects.
Only 1 language, its a great tool, I think its very important to expand to languages like spanish or french.
Transparency of goals, and alignment of priority. It also enables better accountability for all staff.
The Cascade program aligned strongly with the needs of our business. We needed a tool to help us manage our business strategy across 20 different functional departments. We chose Cascade as the concept of cascading goals matched the way our business performed strategic planning. The system allows each of the areas to manage their own strategic plan, whilst enabling visibility and accountability of alignment with the high level business strategy. The transparency of the system is one of it's biggest benefits. At the click of a button you are able to assess the health of the organisation according to its strategic objectives and associated goals. It is very user friendly and easy to customise. In a matter of minutes, anyone can set up team dashboards to use in meetings or as a general communication tool. The snapshot reports are great for sharing with others outside of the system and provide an up to date gantt chart of project status. I would highly recommend this tool to anyone.
Occasionally you will stumble across features that don't exist in the system which would be useful. The chat function allows you to communicate directly with the Cascade team and get a real time response to any issues you might have or any ideas for improvement. This is really great for efficiency, as you can just continue working through any challenges with the help of the Cascade team. They take the feedback on-board, and we have already experienced a number of system optimisations which have been rolled out as a result of our company's suggestions. It is empowering for the team to have that kind of influence on the software, and really aids in employee engagement.
Matthew from C Smart International
Cascade is easy to use, applicable to all staff and allows each staff member to see and track how they contribute to the company strategic goals.
David from The Mac Credit Union
Employees number: 11-50 employees
All my staff have access to see our plan, goals and projects. That has greatly assisted their knowledge of the bigger picture and how they can contribute. The reporting functionality is excellent for Board reports, management meetings through to controlling my own tasks or that of my reports.
easy to use, provides capacity to view projects at high level or to drill down to the weeds, very flexible with reporting options, allows various User permissions, brilliant support service and priced in the sweet spot
Greg from Reisa
Employees number: 11-50 employees
Ease of use and with the training videos released more recently it is even easier to understand. The power to change the culture to one of accountability is simply sensational
Worth every minute to set it up. Play around with it and don't be too scared to stuff it up at the beginning. The training videos and webinars are an absolute must to view. It really does to a-z and the biggest challenge is seeing how the a-z works together
Jason from JDGray Group LLC
Employees number: 2-10 employees
Mainly, we use Cascade Strategy with our clients that don't want their strategic plans to become BOTS (Books On The Shelf). Cascade allows for constant updating, new goals & initiatives, real-time reporting, etc. It provides an easy-to-use platform to keep the plan alive and active throughout the life-cycle of the plan.
Cascade Strategy Execution SaaS takes the complex area of generating accountability around strategic initiatives and makes it clear, concise, and transparent. The thought that has been put into the structure of getting it set up essentially forces you to consider the alignment of your goals, objectives, focus areas and ultimately vision. Cascade is one of the few that gets that the fundamental unit of strategy implementation is NOT individual goals or tasks - it is people, and Cascade re-emphasizes this point subtly throughout the platform.
The platform is quite elegant on the screen, but Cascade still has some work to do around the printed reports. Its a bit of a conundrum as showing the sometimes complex and always multi-layered relationships between people, tasks, goals, vision, etc is likely impossible given the static format of the printed page - but I do feel like it could still probably be a bit better than it is. Most importantly, if you go down the path of using strategy management software, just realize that the dynamic connections that you are able to create with the platform will not always easily translate to the printed page.
Jeff from Santa Fe Way
Employees number: 1 employee
What do you like best?
Finally, an app that takes the big picture seriously. I've been looking for a project portfolio management app for a management-by-projects approach that begins with strategic planning.
Cascade is a holistic strategy app, integrating strategy planning and strategy execution, two aspects or dimensions of strategy that should not be dissociated or bifurcated into separate apps to begin with.
What do you dislike?
Nothing to dislike so far. Although it offers Zapier integration with other apps, a must in today's web app world, I do wish it offered native integration with Google Apps, especially Google Calendar, Google Tasks, and Gmail, perhaps through a Chrome Extension.
Recommendations to others considering the product
Try it, you'll like it. I liked it so much I subscribed two days into the trial.
What business problems are you solving? What benefits have you realized?
Holistic closed-loop strategic planning & execution.
Tom from Sustaina Solution
We implemented Cascade because we are a remote team and found it hard to stay focused on a common goal. We found it pretty easy to create our strategic plan and then use the software to report on progress each month. The support team are great.