POP: Taking stock after 15 months

Sunday, January 1, 2017

15 months ago the POP Centre of Excellence started its operations, so it is time to take stock of the first half of the EU project.

The deliverable D4.2 (“First-year report on Analysis”) provides an overview of the Performance Audit and the Performance Plan services carried out by the POP project partners during the first year of the project. As of 23 September 2016 (at the time of closing this deliverable), we had 63 requests for these services: 53 Performance Audits and 6 Performance Plans. Four requests were canceled because the user did not reply to our mails for an extended period of time or because he/she moved to a different institution or company. We have 35 services in process or currently being communicated to the customer. The deliverable describes and characterizes in detail the cases analysed during the first year of the project, summarizing the findings and recommendations provided to the customers. It also includes the first recommendations for tool developers based on customer feedback.

The third type of service, Proof-of-Concept, is particular successful and shows the highest impact for our customers as can be seen on the success stories about GraGLeS2D from the Institute of Physical Metallurgy and Metal Physics of RWTH Aachen University and the Ateles application from the University of Siegen.

Please see our Success Stories section for further stories, customer testimonials and quotes, and for some reports from successful performance audits. Our quarterly Newsletters also feature a column “Recent Analysis Highlights” summarizing successes from completed POP services.

POP customer feedback also has be very positive. As part of the process providing POP services to end-users, when an audit, a performance plan or a proof of concept is finished, a corresponding survey is sent to the end-user. As can be seen from the following two figures, end users found that the POP experts were very to extremely responsive when questioned about the Audit and found that the answers of the POP experts to their questions were good to excellent:

Deliverable D2.2 (“Customer Feedback Measurement”) summarizes the findings of the work package “Customer Advocate” during the first year of the project in detail.

Finally, on November 23rd, 2016, the project was reviewed by independent reviewers in Brussels. Overall, the reviewers were very satisfied with the progress in the project:

POP has made excellent technical progress and has clearly demonstrated its ability to obtain significant performance improvement, either by providing assistance in restructuring codes or finding more suitable infrastructure. … The work has been of very good quality in all work packages. … In addition to research institutions, SMEs have already been attracted as pilot customers for these innovative services and this was one of the overall objectives of this CoE. … The consortium has clearly demonstrated its ability to improve the performance of a wide variety of codes both developed/used by industry and academia. … The performance optimisation and productivity services offered to industry, particularly SMEs, have already shown innovative results with significant code improvements in some cases.