As IT expenditures continue to rise, it has become more essential than ever to dedicate time to IT portfolio management. Through IT portfolio management (ITPM), businesses become better equipped to improve the performance of their portfolio by balancing both risks and returns. Managing IT as a portfolio of assets can help take a business in a positive direction by adapting new technologies, identifying strengths and improving decision-making abilities. This blog post is a discussion of IT portfolio management best practices and how IT management consulting can help grow a business.
1. Identify the Components of a Business Strategy
Having a solid business strategy in place is critical for growth. Not only is it important for a business to have a well-developed strategy, but the individual components of that strategy should be aligned with an organization’s objectives. Business leaders should start by taking note of current projects and resources. Next, they should evaluate the projects they are working on to determine if there is room for cost savings. They should also identify skilled employees to work on high-value projects and initiatives.
2. Establish and Monitor a PMO
A PMO, which stands for project management office, is a business unit designed to oversee various portfolio processes, as well as coordinate efforts within an organization. While a business may already have people that are dedicated to handling project affairs, developing a department that focuses only on IT portfolio management can help ensure that even the most complex projects are addressed swiftly and with great detail. For project portfolio management (PPM) to be truly successful, it is important for these team members to receive support and direction from executive staff. Without appropriate oversight, PPM can fail.
3. Evaluate New Project Initiatives
After establishing a business unit to oversee project portfolio measures, businesses should take the time to develop project evaluation criteria. The PMO should develop effective criteria that allow an organization to efficiently review, evaluate, and authorize projects. The PMO will also determine if this criterion aligns with the organization’s strategic objectives. When evaluating new project initiatives, it is important to ask a number of questions, including:
- Will the project effectively drive business goals?
- Can the desired outcome be achieved through a current project?
- What is the anticipated tangible outcome of the project?
- What is the risk-return profile of the project?
- What resources are needed to complete the project?
4. Create a Risk Management Strategy
An important step in the review phase is the evaluation of the project’s risk-return profile. By creating an organizational risk management strategy, businesses can move towards PPM success. This begins by evaluating the inherent and potential risks of each project, and then comparing this to the overall portfolio, instead of comparing solo initiatives. Business leaders should be careful not to make the mistake of performing a risk assessment only once during a project. To keep everyone updated on changes, it is important to perform risk assessments several times over the course of the project.
5. Invest in IT Management Consulting Services
Businesses looking for ways to enhance their IT portfolio management efforts should consider investing in IT management consulting services. Today, most small- and medium-sized businesses do not have the necessary budget to invest in a full-time IT department. That is why hiring IT experts from an IT management consulting service is so appealing to these businesses. These services allow companies to complete their IT-based work in less time and with a smaller budget. Businesses also benefit from working with an entire company of IT experts with extensive knowledge as opposed to a single person.
Investing in IT management consulting services has also been found to be useful in improving workplace productivity. Technology can help businesses boost productivity and morale through communication, collaboration and the sharing of knowledge. An IT management consulting service can help plan, implement and maintain these strategies to maximize productivity. With help from an IT expert, there is more time to focus on core business functions and grow your company.
IT portfolio management best practices are helpful in making sure your business runs smoothly. Project management affects much more than just individual projects. It influences the overall health of a company and impacts the company’s ability to reach objectives. As IT portfolio management can be a complex field to navigate solo, it can be advantageous to call in an IT expert to implement best practices for IT portfolio management. For more information or to inquire about IT management consulting services, contact Hartman Executive Advisors.