Best Project Portfolio Management [PPM] Software & Tools

Best Project Portfolio Management Software & ToolsIf project management means doing things right all the time, then project portfolio management (PPM) means doing the right things at the right time. Any given enterprise has business goals and strategies, and each of its departments may propose, sponsor, or implement projects that help the company achieve them. Without guidance or priority, 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.

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Top Project Portfolio Management recommendations

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PPM software is 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 can use a single, company-wide PPM system that gives a unified and updated view of the state of all projects, programs, and portfolios. It provides the performance information needed by senior management so they can effectively monitor the actual progress and compare it to their strategic plans as close to real time as possible. Today’s top project portfolio management software and tools have intuitive interface, customizable dashboards, insightful reports, and different views to both high-level and granular details, as well as responsive customer support.

1. dragonboat

Need to manage ideas and connect OKRs, Agile, and Resources? Check out dragonboat – a modern Responsive PPM platform adopted by innovative teams. dragonboat offers end to end PPM capabilities from capturing ideas and product prioritization to aligning OKRs and allocating resources, and closing the loop with multi-level stakeholder reports. dragonboat is the modern solution for modern teams tying annual vision, quarterly plan, and sprints responsively. dragonboat supports robust bidirectional sync with Agile tools like Jira, Github, Clubhouse, automating manual work while reducing errors. Deliver products 2x faster and increase productivity by 40 percent with dragonboat. Learn more about Responsive PPM and sign up for your free 2-week trial today.

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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. Proggio

Proggio is a patent based Project Portfolio Management solution for PMO’s. Its intuitive and visually communicative to helps teams plan and execute projects that deliver results on time, whether they are in the office or at home. Users gain control over their entire project portfolio by tracking auto-generated health indicators in one quick glance. All stakeholders in the organization have access to relevant tools that help align projects toward goals. They can use project view or Kanban view and get clarity that allow them to stay focused. Proggio also provides real-time insights at the portfolio, project, and task level, process support for the whole project lifecycle, over a hundred integrations with popular work tools.

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4. KeyedIn

Get started or grow your portfolio management with KeyedIn project portfolio management software. Its strategy-first approach provides portfolio analysis and insights, resource capacity planning, and robust reporting and dashboards. KeyedIn offers several products that provide end-to-end project portfolio management, strategic portfolio management for value-based decision-making, and adaptive project management for successful project delivery and execution. Contact KeyedIn Solutions today!

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5. 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.

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6. Wrike

Wrike is an award-winning work management software used by millions that enables teams to plan and track projects, collaborate in real-time, and automate reports. Wrike’s 100 percent scalable features include Gantt charts, Kanban boards, personalized dashboards, and custom request forms. Automate processes and get up to 50 percent more productive. Create 360-degree visibility with time tracking, budget management, and project portfolio analysis. Keep data protected with enterprise-level security features. Wrike’s solutions include Wrike for Marketers and Wrike for Professional Services, along with specific team templates. Integrate with over 400 apps from companies like Microsoft, Google, and Salesforce. Used by more than 20,000 companies globally, it offers free plans, with paid plans starting at $9.80 per user per month.
 

Why do companies need portfolio management software?

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Project management software helps mitigate risks in individual projects by identifying early the problematic areas as well as enforcing best practices. As organizations gain more experience and success in delivering projects, they take on more projects to achieve bigger goals faster. Individual project management does not guarantee collective success for all projects. A project portfolio management software provides companies the visibility, oversight, and capabilities to help them prioritize and manage both current and future projects and resources simultaneously. Users will have a central platform to manage overall project efforts. They can now decide where to invest the company’s time, budget, and staff based on factual information. PPM software enables provides a way to select, prioritize, authorize, and manage financial and work resources according to a defined strategy.

PM vs. EPM vs. PPM

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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

Project management software are products that provide project planning, tracking, and monitoring of individual projects. Project managers use the software to know who is doing what task by what time. PM applications also promote collaboration among team members. Project management software promotes work visibility through features such as milestones, Gantt charts, budgeting, calendars, and timesheets.

Enterprise project management (EPM) software

Enterprise project management 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

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 the company is focusing its resources and skills.

Read also: Key Differences Between Project and Portfolio Management

Core PPM Software Functionality

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Project portfolio management software combines technologies, processes, and methodologies to effectively plan, develop, and execute projects. The combination of features such as pipeline management, resource distribution, change management, financial administration, and risk management provide users a higher operational efficiency and less chances of error compared to using traditional approaches to project management.

Pipeline management

Pipeline management, also called pipeline assessment and analysis, is a PPM feature that helps users determine whether they can finish a project or projects within the time and resources available. This feature provides the assessment by allowing managers to have a constant overview of projects and resources.

Resource distribution

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 for easy testing across the portfolio.

Change management

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

Financial administration shows the anticipated financial value of projects in relation to the company’s objectives and priorities. Financial managers can 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

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.

Read also: Risk or Constraint – Project Management Process

Common PPM Applications

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PPM software is common in enterprises, but mid-sized companies are beginning to adopt them, too. Aside from business objectives and company size, businesses choose a PPM system that is specific to their industry. Some of the industries that have access to industry-specific PPM applications are:

  • IT/software development
  • Construction
  • Product development
  • Marketing agencies
  • Healthcare
  • Manufacturing
  • Education
  • Government
  • Insurance
  • Pharmaceutics
  • Transportation.

Executive buy-in and support

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Purchasing a PPM software, like any other asset, is an investment. To approve and implement the adoption of the software, senior project manager and/or the Project Management Office need to convince company executives that it will benefit the whole organization. Stakeholders must see in the data the kind of return on investment buying the PPM software will have. Consulting the CTO early is crucial in the buying process. The CIO can easily 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 help the company avoid implementing low-value projects.

Ready to explore PPM software solutions?

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Project portfolio management software provides many benefits regardless of business size. 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 also comes with more advanced security and scale features, and therefore can cost more. Taking the free trial period offered by many vendors to learn and experience the actual solution is a good way to test if it’s a good fit.

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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