Portfolio management

For your Project Roadmap, prioritise your product projects, in order to achieve the greatest benefit for the company. However, so that you remain competitive in the long term, you need to adopt a holistic approach to balance product, platform, module, pre-development and technology projects. Our portfolio management approach supports you in reconciling all project types, prioritise them clearly and create a consistent Project Roadmap.

The interplay of strategies

In order to develop innovative products and defend (or expand) your position in the market, you need to combine the product and technology portfolio in a meaningful way. Only then will a suitable project portfolio emerge. Five strategy components play an important role in this regard:

  • Corporate strategy
  • Business field strategy
  • Product strategy
  • Technology strategy
  • Platform and module strategy

The corporate strategy defines the business fields in which the company is active. The business field strategy defines the company’s fundamental direction. The product strategy and the product portfolio are closely linked to it. Similarly, the technology strategy gives rise to the technology portfolio. You now know which products you want to bring to market and when, and which technologies are required for them.

With your platform and module strategy, you then decide to reduce the variance of components and create significantly more customer choice through the potential for combination offered by these. This creates significant efficiencies in the form of modularised and platform-based products. The task of portfolio management is now to prioritise the product, platform, module, pre-development or technology projects that arise in a prudent manner. In practice, product projects are the focus of everyone in the organisation, because they earn the money for the company and everyone knows them. It is important not to act with a lack of foresight, but rather to take a long-term view and include all the links between the projects. Product projects then still lead the prioritisation, but the content-based linking of all the project types mentioned generates the dependencies.

Prioritising the project portfolio and creating a roadmap

From the preceding consideration, different projects with different sizes and characteristics are now recommended. For the systematic prioritisation of a project portfolio, it is important to evaluate and compare all project types on the basis of a uniform project value. Only a transparent evaluation of the project value promises a clear and – at a later stage – comprehensible prioritisation of your project portfolio. This evaluation can be carried out on the basis of uniform criteria in the form of a scoring model. Useful criteria for this include:

  • Strategic fit
  • Profitability
  • Innovation
  • Risks
  • Competition

Other criteria can be added depending on the situation. Once you have determined the project values, an initial ranking of the projects can be created.

This determination of importance is now brought into relation with the content-related links, and dependencies and revised. This may result in lower-priority product projects being preferred, since, for example, you can fall back on a technology or platform development project that is already fixed. A product project originally pegged as a higher priority that itself requires a new technology or platform project can thus be given priority at a later stage. In the context of available resources, a feasible Project Roadmap with clear prioritisation and time staggering of all projects is created.

In practice, this initial ranking undergoes multiple loops in management rounds. There, the Roadmap is scrutinised and checked for plausibility. It is important that this “management factor” is subject to the right controls and that different Project Roadmaps do not emerge. The single-source-of-truth principle must always be upheld with regard to the Project Roadmap.

Experience has shown that it makes sense to schedule a maximum of 80% of available resources, in order to cushion unexpected changes in the plan.

Adherence to resources and scheduling is monitored by the responsible multi-project management function. The Project Roadmap is communicated to the project management organisation. The clear alignment of all participants thus leads to the avoidance of misunderstandings in operational work and sustainably increases efficiency.

The benefit to you

  • You benefit from a holistic approach to your portfolio management.
  • You systematically identify your need for action in the project portfolio from your product and technology portfolio in combination with your platform and module strategy.
  • You evaluate your project portfolio using transparent criteria and thus create the basis for a sustainable decision.
  • You bring your prioritisation in line with the available resources and thus ensure a realistic Project Roadmap.