One of the most important yet confusing topics in the field of project management is portfolio management. However, if understood well, it will just be very simple to apply. But what is a portfolio by the way? A portfolio is a collection of related or non-related programs and projects. In order to effectively manage those programs and collections, portfolio management is done.
If you are tasked to manage the programs and projects of your company, you need to be knowledgeable and skillful in managing your portfolio. The following are key secrets to a successful and effective portfolio management:
The very first thing that an organization or company needs to do is to choose and approve which projects or programs will go inside the portfolio. Usually, a portfolio is designed to successfully accomplish a certain business goal or objective, so the selection criteria must meet that goal or objective.
After the selection process, programs and projects within the portfolio must be given priority in accordance with the resources, budgets and decisions. So, this requires brainstorming among the staff of the company or members of the organization. Bear in mind that portfolio management also requires teamwork.
After the process of selection and prioritization of a portfolio of projects or programs, they are kicked off. Then, they will be managed and tracked.
Particularly, portfolio management closely manages the resources, scope, cost and time of the programs or projects so that the portfolio will always remain intact.
You also need to carefully decide on what reporting is required, for whom and what information. You also need to figure out the things that you have to gauge, track and report on as these factors will help you achieve your goals and objectives.
This is one of the most important aspects of portfolio management. You must always keep the change control boards, teams and portfolio stakeholders informed. Bear in mind that priorities change most of the time, so having clear and effective communication with everyone with regard to portfolio’s health and wealth is important to ensure that the portfolio does what it is originally designed for: to successfully meet a certain business goal or objective.
In managing the portfolio’s health and wealth, there are essential keywords to remember such as juggling, proper balance and full awareness. In portfolio management, juggling several projects or programs is essential.
It is very important to be in balance, to expect that some things will be occasionally out of balance, and to successfully manage and track it within the portfolio. Having full awareness of the moving parts within the portfolio and managing them is also very crucial. You also need to figure out the different factors that affect the variables in the portfolio.
You also have to think about a certain portfolio that you are tied to personally such as your personal financial portfolio and how the performance of various items impacts the portfolio.
In managing a financial portfolio, there are several elements such as treasury bills (T-bills), cash reserves, bonds and stocks. When stocks are up, bonds are down and vice versa. Your T-bills or cash reserves are on hand if in case you need them direly for emergency, and you keep them in the portfolio in order to maintain its solidity.
Thus, even though some of the assets go up or down, you still have others to sustain the portfolio and its health and wealth unharmed. The same goes for a portfolio of programs or projects.
Just think of an art portfolio. Isn’t it that it contains items based on the artist’s preferences? He or she includes subjects or mediums that are his or her choice to work on. Maybe some are more profitable for others, or some may be more fun. The portfolio of an artist is based on choice of work desired.
Now, think of a portfolio for business, and its focus on outcome. There are times that projects in a business portfolio are selected to increase business opportunities. There are also times when projects support the community’s growth and development. There may also be projects that meet company guidelines or federal regulations.
The bottom-line is that you really have to think about what must be inside of your portfolio and what its purpose is. This is the main key in achieving successful portfolio management.
If you would like to ensure the success and sustained growth of your business, all you need to do is to master the ways on how to manage your portfolio well. By following the tips mentioned in this article, you will never make any wrong choices or decisions.
Portfolio management is not a hard task as what most people think. By simply knowing the key secrets to management, everything will be on the right track.