Best Project Portfolio Management [PPM] Software & Tools

If project management means doing things right all the time, then project portfolio management (PPM) means doing the right things at the right time. An enterprise usually has business goals and strategies.

Each department may propose, sponsor, or implement projects that will help the company reach these business goals. As a result, everyone would be competing to have the resources and funds from a limited source.

To help in the selection, optimization, and oversight of project investments, senior executives use portfolio management software to make sure that approved projects align with the company’s goals, strategies and time frame.

The Top Six

PPM software is now capable of providing a top-down approach to help users manage projects and resources across the enterprise. Instead of using manual tools, desktop software, or portfolio application for each project environment, enterprises now prefer a single, company-wide PPM system that can give a single version of the state of all projects and portfolios and transparently show the performance information needed by senior management.

Thus, they are able to monitor the actual progress and compare it to their strategic plans as close to real time as possible. The top portfolio management software providers and tools also have an intuitive interface, highly visible information, multiple views, and access to both overview and granular details, as well as responsive customer support.

1. Easy Projects

Easy Projects is an award-winning collaborative work management platform used by local and remote teams to achieve quantifiable operational improvements. Complete projects faster with the ability to customize Easy Projects’ dashboard to match exactly how your team likes to work. Avoid missing deadlines and improve team collaboration with features like inter-project dependencies. Easily provide project metrics and a birds-eye view on updates to your Executive Team with in-depth Business Intelligence reports. Teams that use Easy Projects report a 30% decrease in project duration and a 60% increase in productivity. To experience these results and provide your business with work management software built for your entire team to utilize, not just Project Managers, book your free demo of Easy Projects today.

Learn more about Easy Projects

2. Workzone

Workzone is a powerful project portfolio management software that is a leading PSA solutions contender. It is easy enough to use, but at the same time, it instantly provides a big-picture view of where projects stand. Therefore, decision makers can easily identify trends and allocate staff where needed. It also has templates that help to standardize processes and quickly start projects without having to build them from scratch every time. Visual tools such as Gantt charts allow teams to view timelines, tasks, and responsibilities, which can be auto generated and edited. Other features include personalized to-do lists, centralized project requests, resource utilization reports, and collaborative document and task management functionality. Workzone is ideal for marketing teams, agencies, project and product management. Plans offered are Team, Professional, and Enterprise. API access, however, is only offered in the Enterprise plan.

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3. monday.com

monday.com is a team management software that enables users to visually plan, organize, and track in a central collaborative space. They can customize the columns to show the information they need. The software provides a big picture, whether timelines, files, calendar, Kanban boards, and any other relevant and usable data. Its Enterprise plan, aside from essential features, also includes advanced features and views, more integrations and automations, and unlimited dashboards. It also has more security features, one-on-one training, and a dedicated customer success manager. Those interested in monday.com can contact sales for a quotation. Also, a free 14-day trial period is available.

Learn more about monday.com

4. ProjectManager.com

ProjectManager.com features powerful online project management, time-tracking and collaboration tools for managers and their teams. With real-time visibility, managers can ensure that their projects and their teams are always on track. Plus, team members love the ability to update their timesheets and tasks anytime, anywhere. It’s easy to see why teams in over 100 countries, like NASA, Ralph Lauren, Volvo and Brookstone, rely on ProjectManager.com.

Learn more about ProjectManager.com

5. Wrike

Wrike is an online work management solution that enables project tracking, team collaboration, and real-time reporting. Features interactive Gantt charts, Kanban boards, personalized dashboards, and request forms. These help organizations to automate processes and become more efficient and productive. Use customized workflows and shared folders to achieve full visibility of workloads and progress. Wrike offers a number of specialized solutions such as Wrike for Marketers and Wrike for Professional Services, along with tailor-made tools and templates for specific teams. Also features 400+ app integration from the likes of Microsoft, Google, and Salesforce. Used by 20,000+ companies across 140 countries. Both free and premium plans available (with per user per month pricing.)

Learn more about Wrike

6. Sciforma

Sciforma PPM is a robust PPM software solution that allows PMOs and project delivery leaders to achieve higher growth and reach strategic objectives through more efficient and effective management of the project portfolio. Functionally scalable, PMOs (no matter what the PPM maturity) can take advantage of Sciforma’s critical PPM capabilities: portfolio and program, resources, demand, project planning, time tracking, and collaboration to make smarter, data-driven decisions. Discover powerful portfolio status overviews, project health scores, portfolio simulations, strong capacity planning, and much more.

Learn more about Sciforma


Project Portfolio Management Software Guide

Why do companies need portfolio management software? Large projects are usually more complex. The additional complexity results in more challenges for the project to be successful. The use of project management software helps mitigate the risks by identifying early the problematic areas, as well as enforcing best practices. As organizations gain more experience and success in delivering projects, they are able to take on more. However, following PM processes on individual projects may not be enough to manage all of them successfully.

A project portfolio management software is a tool that provides companies the visibility, oversight, and capabilities to help them prioritize and manage current projects and resources, often simultaneously, and even help them manage future ones. Users now have a central platform to manage overall project efforts. Deciding where to invest the company’s time, budget and staff can now be based on factual information.

PM vs. EPM vs. PPM

Software vendors offer a variety of project management products that can take on a single function or perform expanded capabilities. Some sell systems that are separate and modular, while others sell integrated all-in-one suites.

Project management (PM) software are products that enable users to perform project planning, tracking, and monitoring, usually, of individual projects. Project managers use the software to know who is supposed to be doing what task by what time. PM applications also promote collaboration among team members. Project visibility is shown through features such as milestones, Gantt charts, budgeting, calendars and timesheets.

Enterprise project management (EPM) software are products similar to PM software, but they handle a greater number of individual projects. They are more attractive to larger companies simply because of their scale. EPM solutions facilitate day-to-day project management and delivery with greater capacity. EPM is ideal for multiple simultaneous projects across all departments.

Project portfolio management (PPM) software, or simply portfolio management software, are products that enable users to handle a collection of projects, programs, other portfolios, and their relationship with the business and with one another. These PPM systems can provide information about the performance and resource demands of current projects. They can also provide information on future projects and their impact. Users are able to see the dependencies between projects and the rest of the business, as well as where resources and skills are invested.

Core PPM Software Functionality

Pipeline management, also called pipeline assessment and analysis, is a PPM feature that helps users determine whether a project or projects can be finished with the time and resources available. Assessment is provided by allowing managers to have a constant overview of projects and resources.

Resource distribution enables users to allocate company resources as needed. The feature allows the management and distribution of financial, inventory, technical, and human resource. It may include ‘what-if’ scenario models that can be tested across the portfolio.

Change management in PPM systems provide a central repository of change requests. Users are able to review and assess inquiries as they arise and match available resources to the demand. This feature also provides monitoring capability to project timelines and budgets in real time.

Financial administration can be used by managers to show the anticipated financial value of projects in relation to the company’s objectives and priorities. Financial managers are able to see updated financial progress as it happens, and before project completion, to accurately predict if a project will fail to meet its objectives.

Risk management in PPM software allows users to analyze the risk present in each existing and forthcoming project. Thus, they are able to determine confidence levels across the portfolio. They can evaluate levels on a categorical basis and assist in making financial and resource allocation decisions.

Other PPM features to consider are deployment options, mobile access, global support, software integrations, industry-specific functionality, new features release schedule, capability-based best practices, and additional PM or EPM modules.

Common PPM Applications

PPM software systems are usually adopted by enterprises, but mid-sized companies are beginning to adopt them, too. Aside from business objectives and company size, another factor in choosing which PPM system may depend on the company’s specific industry. There are industry-specific PPM vendors for the IT/software development, construction, product development, marketing agencies, healthcare, manufacturing, education, government, insurance, pharmaceutics, and transportation.

Executive Buy-In and Support

Purchasing a PPM software, like any other asset, is an investment. To approve and implement this change, executives need to be convinced that it will benefit them. Stakeholders must see in the data the kind of return on investment it will have. The CTO must be consulted early in the buying process. The CIO can understand that a cloud-based PPM system can save costs on infrastructure and reduce burden on IT resources. PPM software can provide the CEO a data-driven way to monitor, evaluate, and predict project success. Last, the CFO will appreciate how PPM software can help reduce budget overruns for successful projects and will avoid implementing low value projects.

Conclusion

Project portfolio management software for enterprise provides many benefits. It can help users prioritize the right projects and programs that lead to increased productivity. Real time data helps eliminate surprises, since it provides organization leaders a process to identify potential problems early. Also, they can initiate corrective action earlier before any significant financial impact.

PPM software enables executives to build contingencies into the overall portfolio, giving them more flexibility to plan and allocate resources, whether in times of a crisis or a slowdown. Portfolio management software for enterprises also comes with more advanced security and scale features, and therefore it can cost more. Thus, it is best to take advantage of the free trial period offered to learn and experience more of the actual solution.

Jose Maria Delos Santos

Jose Maria Delos Santos

Jose is a subject matter expert and member of the writing team for Project-Management.com and Bridge24. He has written hundreds of articles including project management software reviews, books reviews, training site reviews, and general articles related to the project management industry.

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