Are you in the market for a portfolio management software solution? While it may seem like a straightforward task, there are many factors that go into selecting the right one. It’s important to ensure the one you choose meets all of your needs and requirements – both present and future. Plus, portfolio management should be a view of your business as a whole; it’s not just about your projects, even though in many cases those make up the portfolio.
With a portfolio management solution in place, you can see what you want, when you want from a top-level view. More importantly, the platform can be used to manage risks and inform leadership decisions.
Here are four key factors to look for in choosing portfolio management software for your organization.
When choosing a portfolio management solution, one of the first things to consider is cost. And it’s more than just the initial cost of the software. Obviously you have to consider licensing or subscription costs for a third-party solution, but there are other costs associated. Beyond initial licensing, which ultimately drives your decision, consider ongoing maintenance and update costs, too. With many systems, the cost to change or update your solution can be high. If you need customizations, be ready to pay for them.
Choosing not to invest in a third-party product has costs associated with it too. The “no action” cost is inefficiency and lack of productivity. If you choose to develop your own system, you need to consider the cost of development, updates, and modifications.
Both a benefit and a key factor in choosing a portfolio management solution is efficiency. You want to find a system that can increase efficiency across your organization and project teams. This is typically found in a system that can morph to the way you work, instead of forcing you to change. Allowing your teams, project managers, and others to continue working the way they are is key.
Implementing the right solution could save you valuable time and prevent unnecessary errors, thus improving overall efficiency. Connecting to external data sources, importing data, and integrating with legacy systems significantly reduces the need to “hand jam” reports. You can save a lot of time when creating reports and briefings, making that process much more efficient. Plus, the concept of real-time visibility and reporting allows managers and decision makers to see current, dynamic data instead of stale and static data. Decision making becomes much more efficient—and informed.
The best type of software can be customized, seamlessly fitting in with your organization. Constant evolving and changing is a part of this world. You need a solution that is nimble and quick, rapidly responding to changes. That kind of flexibility is important when you need it designed to grow and change with your organization.
You’ll also want to make sure you have the ability to leverage data regardless of where it lives. This will allow for anyone to make updates and changes to reflect the constant demands of a program. There should be a flexibility to define and adjust portfolios as needed, which can make your job easier.
Portfolio managers need clear insight into multiple programs and projects at once. This level of visibility is essential for effective long-term planning and budgeting. Some of the best portfolio management solutions provide accurate data in real time, to the right people before they need it.
There is a true benefit to viewing real-time information across multiple projects and departments. This type of visibility helps detect issues and potential problems before they even arise.
The time is now to implement a portfolio management solution to improve uniformity across projects while monitoring your portfolio or programs as a whole. When searching for the right fit, consider cost, efficiency, flexibility and visibility – these four key factors are imperative in an effective system. Not to mention, it should be easy to implement and provide another avenue for collaboration and communication.