We live in an era of change. And even more so with the effects of the Covid-19 pandemic. New ways of working remotely are being added to the new work and management methodologies, which make the execution of the organizations' strategy towards value delivery even more complex.
Markets are becoming increasingly competitive. Customers are demanding increasingly sophisticated products and services tailored to their needs. And the margin of error for organizations to avoid losing market share is shrinking.
In this context, executives and managers of PMO or IT teams need to keep up to date with the latest trends in portfolio management in order to lead their corporations to success. Want to know what they are? Read on to find out by yourself.
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Agile, Waterfall, Scrum, Kanban, Lean, DevOps, OKR, SAFe, Spotify... These are the work methodologies you have been hearing the most over the last few years. And surely some of them coexist at the same time in your organization since they are used by different departments to fulfill different purposes.
And that is the key. There is no one methodology that is better than the others, but each one must fulfill its purpose in your organization. For strategy planning, the organization's executives may prefer to use more traditional approaches such as Waterfall, or more innovative ones such as OKR. However, development teams can adapt better to other more agile ways of working such as Scrum or DevOps, for example.
“The future in the management model is Hybrid”
The future in the management model is Hybrid. More and more companies are understanding that their competitiveness in the markets depends on being able to adapt to the ever-changing environment we are living in. And that means embracing models that take the best of the more traditional management approaches with the new Agile methodologies.
Completing projects and programs on time and on the budget is no longer enough. Aligning the portfolio with strategic objectives is the major challenge for companies today. A portfolio that, consequently, must be focused on the continuous delivery of value both for the organization and for its customers and users.
There are more and more tools on the market with functionalities designed for the management and execution of the organization's portfolio. These solutions can translate the organization's strategic objectives into project plans, products and services focused on delivering value to the business in an agile and flexible manner.
For example, Triskell Software has been recognized as a strategic portfolio management provider in the Forrester report 'Now Tech: Strategic Portfolio Management Tools, Q3 2021'. This recognition is thanks to our expertise in delivering flexible solutions related to Strategic Portfolio Management.
The digital era is also the era of change. And, in this context, many companies, in order to remain competitive in the market, are increasingly forced to redefine their strategy. One-year strategic plans are no longer valid; they must be reviewed at an earlier date. And it is, at this point, when it comes to adapting strategy execution to changes in the market and in objectives, where many organizations fail.
”Strategic planning and portfolio execution must include adaptive elements”
Both the planning and execution of the organization's portfolio must include adaptive elements. This will help you to respond in an agile and flexible manner to changes, both internal and external, that may shift the organization towards new strategic objectives.
Traditional portfolio management approaches are ineffective at predicting and adapting to change and focus exclusively on deliverables rather than value and user satisfaction. With an adaptive approach, however, the opposite is true. More accurate forecasts, faster delivery times or higher user and customer satisfaction are some of the long-term benefits you will gain from this approach.
As Agile and adaptive elements are incorporated into portfolio management, your delivery model will evolve as well. While more traditional portfolio management approaches focus on project delivery, more and more organizations have adopted more product-centric delivery models to improve agility and focus on value.
What’s the difference between these two models? Project delivery is based on a sequence of tasks that must be completed within agreed deadlines and budgets, with no scope for additional investment once the project is completed. However, product delivery allows a better focus on customer needs and value delivery, focusing on Agile and iterative improvement of the organization's products and services.
When managing and executing the organization's portfolio, it is important to prioritize the different initiatives that you manage from the PMO. This prioritization should be done taking into account the value to be delivered to both the organization and its customers.
If you adopt a portfolio management model where you score the different programs and projects based on the value they provide to the organization, this will allow you to make decisions aligned with the strategic objectives of the organization on important topics such as:
”Triskell allows linking any deliverable to your strategic objectives”
It is important that you have tools that allow you to implement this scoring system. For example, one of the most outstanding features of Triskell Software is that it allows you to link any object you create in the platform (whether at project, program or portfolio level) to the strategic objectives of the organization. Moreover, it allows you to set a priority level for each of the objects you create. You will then be able to break down each of your organization's strategic objectives into strategic projects and programs to achieve them.
The digital age and, above all, the COVID-19 pandemic, have forced many organizations to have to change their processes for managing their budgets. Planning matters such as costs, resources or budgets a year in advance, as has been done up to now, no longer makes sense.
The current context has led to ever-shortening delivery dates for projects, products and services. In addition, in order not to lose competitiveness in their markets, companies are sometimes obliged to change their roadmap and modify the strategic objectives they had initially planned.
As a result, many organizations have changed their approach to cost and budget planning. These are some of the practices that you should put in place for efficient management of the organization's budget.
Kanban boards, timesheets, Gantt charts, Microsoft Excel, e-mail, Jira… Many organizations still use various tools to record and manage different aspects of their project portfolio. You already know the mess of trying to manually register and manage all this information, especially if it is registered in separate and independent solutions.
“With Triskell you can manage planning and strategy management from a single interface”
And the question is: wouldn't it be simpler to have a PPM software that has all these functionalities in a single interface? With Triskell Software, for example, you will be able to manage from a single interface both the planning and the execution of the strategy with such flexibility that adapts to the different needs, methodologies and governance systems that may coexist in your organization.
You already know the advantages that the automation of tasks and processes has brought to your organization when executing your strategy. Reduction of delivery times, assignment of more staff to the most complex tasks, standardization of processes, automatic report creation, etc. Task automation is a trend that you should already have internalized in your company.
However, do you use automation to predict what is to come? The current context, in which the life cycles of products and services are becoming shorter and shorter, forces organizations to react in an agile manner to the changing trends of their users and customers.
This obliges them to review their strategic objectives in ever shorter time cycles and adjust key aspects of strategic portfolio planning such as resource allocation and management, costs and deliverable prioritization accordingly.
Those organizations which can predict and diagnose these changes in advance and have alternative roadmaps prepared will have an undoubted competitive advantage with respect to their competitors.
PPM tools such as Triskell Software have a scenario planner and What-if simulations by which you can create scenarios on a set of projects, products, deliverables, etc. to prioritize them and, from there, measure their impact on resources, capabilities, costs and priorities for further analysis and decision making.
The Covid-19 pandemic has brought new forms of remote working. And also new challenges in the management and execution of the organization's portfolio. And new channels of communication with all stakeholders, replacing face-to-face meetings.
There are many online tools that you use on a daily basis to communicate with area managers, Project Managers, executive board members, Product Owners, Scrum Masters, etc. E-mail, instant messaging applications, videoconferencing, collaborative tools... All of them have been able to replace the tedious and often insignificant face-to-face meetings.
“Automating communications will make portfolio management more bearable”
However, it may happen that, with the emergence of so many collaborative tools, you can lose focus, and some stakeholders may not be informed about the progress of some of the initiatives in the portfolio. Automating communications and being able to integrate some of these tools with the PPM software you use in your organization will make portfolio management much more manageable.
The last of the trends we are going to mention for the moment is the importance of Business Intelligence. You may already know that your project portfolio generates a lot of data, which filling it in by hand can be a real headache and a time-consuming activity.
Smart data analysis will allow you to integrate and automate both the collection of this data and the synchronization of this data into dashboards and reports containing the relevant information of your portfolio.Again, having a PPM software like Triskell Software will make this task much easier for you, as it allows you to:
As your company's objectives change, new work methodologies and new trends in the field of portfolio management will emerge over time that you will need to take into account in order for your organization to remain competitive in your market.
The important thing is not that you know all the trends, or that you apply them all at the same time. You should evaluate, based on the nature of your organization, which of them will bring you positive results in your daily performance. And, of course, to have tools that are flexible and adaptable enough to allow you to implement these new trends.
Triskell Software is the flexible solution you need to drive your organization's portfolio management to excellence. Check it out for yourself by requesting a demo below.