What is Strategic Portfolio Management? 

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Gartner defines Strategic Portfolio Management as “a set of business capabilities, processes and supporting technologies for continuously creating portfolios of strategic options that focus an organization’s finite resources to execute enterprise-wide business strategy. Effective strategic portfolio management requires being highly effective at three attributes: portfolio alignment, value-driven decision making and ongoing portfolio flexibility.” 

Their research also shows that “organizations highly effective at all three attributes are twice as likely as their competitors to achieve better business outcomes with respect to digital and technology investments.”  

Running an enterprise means being proactive and reactive in equal measure. Reactively, market events cause disruption, triggering critical questions such as: ‘which of our products and initiatives are impacted? How do we pivot and move forward?’ Proactively, the questions may be ‘what are the opportunities ahead of us? Which strategies, technologies and initiatives will make us successful?’

Strategic Portfolio Management (SPM) is the evolution of how enterprises connect strategy and execution. What’s new is that today’s tools and methods help us with feedback loops to take a more efficient, customer-centric, and measurable approach. Beyond an enterprise’s projects, it is the portfolios of products, services and value-streams which hold the key to success. Furthermore, almost every aspect of today’s enterprise is digitally enabled, and this places more emphasis on incorporating good decisions about technology assets. In summary, SPM gives us processes and tools which help with:

STRATEGY. Not only the ability to align enterprise work with business objectives, but also feedback loops which measure success and help identify better business strategies for the future.

EXECUTION. The ability to efficiently prioritize and sequence work based on measures of business value and capacity. The ability to measure outcomes, identify opportunities and adjust.

TECHNOLOGY. The investment planning and alignment of enterprise technology to support business objectives.


How Should Organizations Measure Success? 

Project management has often assessed portfolios of projects by measuring conformity to previous estimates: conformity to budget, conformity to schedule, etc. Strategic Portfolio Management goes beyond these measures and ask questions about the business value of work and the ability of the organization to innovate. Some of the measures include:

OUTCOMES: Do solutions meet the needs of customers and the business? Are we meeting objectives?

FLOW: How efficient is the organization at delivering value to the customer? How effectively do we go from identifying an opportunity, to delivering something in response? Are we responding to business disruption with the speed needed?

COMPETENCY: How proficient is the organization in the practices of business agility?

How does OnePlan and Microsoft Technology Help?

The Microsoft platform provides organizations with a rich set of tools and capabilities to manage work, collaborate and to connect to disparate data sources. OnePlan leverages this platform to provide the functionality, data analysis and integration to support enterprises in increasing the speed with which they launch new products, transform their organization, and adjust to changing business conditions. Our solution includes:

  • Effective alignment of strategy to product, project, and technology investments, with a focus on shortening delivery cycles and pivoting more easily.
  • Tools, analytics, and visualizations to help with the complex task of planning and managing human and financial resource capacity, especially in matrixed scenarios where cross-functional work is common.
  • Consolidation or integration with existing tools in the enterprise, to support the best flow of value throughout a business process, including connecting other tools so that data is not lost or duplicated and so that key metrics can be tracked throughout a workflow.

OnePlan is a complete Strategic Portfolio Management solution that meets the needs of Business, IT and Execution Leaders, giving them a common platform and consistent information to support their collective decision making, improve their speed to market and increase their business agility.

OnePlan supports transformation leadership through a mix of professional services and OnePlan technology solutions, built on the Microsoft platform.

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