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Project Portfolio Management

I will be short on this subject. There are many excellent publications available on Project Management and on Managing the Project Portfolio. If you only search the Internet on the title of this article, you'll have hours of reading ahead of you. I will limit myself to the positioning of the Project Portfolio in the overall view on the IT Portfolio and the Evaluation of Project Proposals.

What is the content of the Project Portfolio?
Arch en Portfolio management 04I will reuse the article on the Architecture Grid to clarify the role of the Project portfolio.

Projects are initiated for the re-engineering of the Business and / or IT. So in the Architecture grid the Project Portfolio is located on the intersection of 'Reality' and 'Abstract Models'. The projects implement new Idea's from the abstract models of the architectures.

From an IT perspectiver, a project is nothing more than the 'Realization and Introduction of new IT Services'.

In general the 'Re-engineering' goes clockwise in the grid.
  • from 'Business Initiatives' that result into an new view on the Business Architecture
  • thru changes in Information Ownerhip
  • to a new view on the Information and Rechnology Architecture
  • by means of projects
  • resulting in new IT Infrastructure and Processes
  • introducing New IT Services in the Business as part of the IT Services Portfolio.

This cycle can also be anti-clockwise when the introduction of new Technology is the trigger for change.

How do I evaluate the added value of a Project Proposal?
An example from mu practice.

I have been heavily using the work of 'Parker and Benson - Information Economics'. I'm not sure whether it is still available. I worked this method of Evaluation of IT Investment proposals into a format that was suitable for Essent. We used this approach succesfully for a number of years.

The method works like this:
  1. a team of specialists evaluate the Investment Proposals on a defined number of criteria and score a proposal independently with a 1 to 5 score. In an evaluation session the scores are communicated, resulting in a final team score.
  2. the Board of Directors decides on the relative importance of the various criteria by assigning a weight factor.
  3. the results of the weighted averages are presented to the Board for final decision making.
We used 3 types of criteria:

Project Portfolio 01E
Project Portfolio 02EProject Portfolio 03E

The result of this activity was presented to the Board as follows:
Project Portfolio 04E