Growing your business requires more and more contracts to be signed. However, just signing more contracts itself is never enough for growth. In order to make the dreams come true, you need to have the right project and portfolio management systems in place to manage material, machinery, and labor resources efficiently in today’s competitive environment. Project portfolio management software tools give you the ability to plan a group of projects and collect data in order to manage schedules, risks, costs, and resources. Here we gather up the best project portfolio management software tools to give you a brief overview.
Project Portfolio Management
A portfolio may include many projects and programs which can be related or nonrelated. Business, profit, non-profit, government, construction, IT, security, etc. projects may be kept under the same portfolio. Portfolio management aims at identifying, prioritizing, authorizing, and managing projects and programs to achieve the organization’s operational and financial goals.
Project Portfolio Management refers to manage a group of interrelated, dependent, and connected projects. PPM seeks to obtain the highest level of benefit by prioritization and sequencing projects. Although the projects of an organization are often considered as discrete and independent units, in fact, they are interdependent. Projects often affect each other in different levels considering the shared resources and funds.
Assume that your organization has 10 ongoing but different types of projects which are all overlapping, most of them are using the same equipment and some of them will be built for the same client. Without having a proper Project Portfolio Management system in place, it will be difficult to deliver them on time and budget.
Making good decisions often carry an organization forward and helps to stand out among its rivals. On the other hand, bad decisions and mismanagement are common causes of project failure. That’s why effective Project Portfolio Management plays a key role in both project selection and execution process.
What Does a Project Portfolio Manager Do?
A project manager deals with only one project, however, a portfolio manager deals with a number of projects that are kept under the same portfolio. A portfolio manager plans and controls the projects and programs of a portfolio. Therefore he/she requires a set of skills to properly manage the team and complete the projects successfully.
What is Project Portfolio Management Software?
Project portfolio management software are advanced tools to plan and manage a number of projects based on key characteristics. They are used to specify the optimal resource usage and schedule for projects to achieve organizational efficiency.
It will be better for you to ask the below questions yourself before choosing a Project Portfolio Management Software.
- Why do we need this software?
- Is web-based software necessary for our organization?
- Does non-web-based software provide enough solutions?
- Does this software provide worldwide solutions?
- How many people are using this software?
- Is it user-friendly?
The answer to these simple questions provides you a general overview of the type of Project Portfolio Management Software that you should use. Thus, you will understand what solutions and tools you will require.
What is the Best Project Portfolio Management Software?
Although the software tools on the market provide similar solutions, their capabilities and power are different. For example, one software may provide advanced cost management solutions, but it may be difficult to use. Therefore the term”best” is very subjective considering the various requirements of organizations.
Below are some of the project portfolio management software available on the market
- Oracle Primavera
- Genius Project
Microsoft Project also has project portfolio management capabilities if it is used with the Project Server.
It is a good idea to check out the demos and try the free trials offered by many project portfolio management software developers before making an investment. When you analyze different types of software maybe you will decide to buy a project management tool instead of a Project Portfolio Management Software. Some of the project management tools have limited PPM capabilities like managing activities and resources across multiple projects.
Note that this article is not a product review. Therefore, our purpose is to provide you a general idea to select a project portfolio management software rather than giving names.
Benefits Of Using a Project Portfolio Management Software
Using software tools provides many benefits to portfolio managers and organizations such as prioritizing and managing high-value projects among others. Regardless of how well your organization performs projects, you need project portfolio management software to determine the over-allocated resources.
Below are some of the benefits of using a project portfolio management software
- PPM Softwares help to plan and deliver multiple projects using Scrum, Gantt, Kanban, Waterfall Methodology
- Web-based PPM Software tools enable to manage projects in real-time.
- Most of the web-based PPM Software have a mobile app that enables you to manage your projects and collaborate on the go.
- Most of the PPM Softwares enables to use of Excel spreadsheets to import or export data. This function helps to make updates quickly.
- PPM Softwares have advanced reporting capabilities which support decision-making.
Project Portfolio Management Software Selection Criteria
While choosing software, the below selection criteria will help you for choosing the best one.
- Resource management: Resource management tools of PPM Softwares help you to schedule the resources and determine the over-allocated resources.
- Cost management: A PPM Software must be capable of supporting financial decision-making. Almost every software has cost management tools, however, the one which has advance financial projection capabilities is the most useful.
- Risk management: There is no risk-free project available in the world. Risk management tools of PPM Softwares help you to classify and manage risks across multiple projects.
- Reporting Features: Financial and schedule reports provide invaluable information regarding the performance of the projects. PPM Softwares with high reporting capabilities provide visual reports as well as spreadsheets.
- Integrations: A PPM software should have advanced import and export functions. It must work in conjunction with other software like excel, Primavera P6 and Microsoft Project.
- Price: Price is an important criterion for selecting the software. You need to analyze the cost as well as the benefits of the software before making an investment.
There are lots of software tools available on the market for Portfolio Management. They have various capabilities and solutions to serve your organizational decision-making. A Project Portfolio Management Software may be quite useful for an organization. On the other hand, it might be completely useless for another. Therefore, selecting the best software depends on your situation, organizational requirements, and the number of projects that you handle.
In this article, we discussed the best project portfolio management software tools, their benefits, and the criteria to select the most useful one. Is your organization using software tools for project program and portfolio management? If so what do you think about the capabilities of it? You can share with us by using the comments box below.
Adhar Dhaval is experienced portfolio, program and project leader with demonstrated leadership in all phases of sales and service delivery of diverse technology solutions. He is a speaker sharing advice and industry perspective on emerging best practices in project leadership, program management, leadership and strategy. He is working for the Chair Leadership Co.