(Part 3 of 3) Pretty Damn Awesome Portfolio Reports

This is both the best and the most depressing portfolio management report I’ve ever read.  Why the best? These thought leadership reports from PMI provide you with a wonderfully rounded assessment of the Portfolio management market, expertly written, spectacularly well researched and beautifully designed.

Why is this 3rd report “Implementing the Project Portfolio – A vital C-Suite Focus” the most depressing portfolio report I’ve ever read?…The answer is simple, the report contains a spectacularly good amount of statistics based on a survey of 500+ executives – the problem is that these statistics are an embarrassment to senior executive leaders everywhere.  The stats highlight, in my opinion, a fundamental lack of skills and what could be viewed as negligence by senior executives.  Sounds a bit harsh? Well you make your own mind up, here are some of the stats.

Depressing statistics from this report:

1) 50% of all project are not resourced properly and 20% of all projects should never have been started in the first place.

2) Only 27% percent of companies say the C-suite is actively engaged in project prioritisation.

3) 10 percent of companies tightly align portfolio management with strategy implementation and only an additional 10 percent broadly align it.

4) 56% of organisations still suffer from pet projects which undermines the portfolio management capability.

5) Only 10% of portfolio management processes strongly enhance strategic adaptability, agility, speed, or success in implementation.

6) Only 30% of respondents say that corporate-level and other senior executives actively engage in portfolio management.

7) Between 23% and 34% percent of organisations collect KPI’s about Portfolio ROI, strategic alignment, risk and portfolio balancing.

A glimmer of light at the end of the tunnel?

1) 63 percent of respondents say that improving strategy implementation is a “high” or “very high priority”

2) 50 percent of respondents say their organizations will increase investment in strategic portfolio management…note that this means half will not.

The report concludes by highlighting that three key elements of portfolio management success require C-suite support those being commitment to provide necessary resources, cultural change to eradicate silo mentality and effective communication between strategy formulation and execution.

What the report doesn’t discuss are the skills and capabilities of Executive Leaders, how they should be educated about portfolio management and the need for more highly skilled Portfolio Management expertise in the market.  In previous articles I’ve said that Portfolio Management professionals are the key to future success of organisations and based on these embarrassing statistics that is clearly the case.  If highly skilled portfolio management people existed in these organisations, there is no way that only 10% of projects would be tightly aligned to strategy, all portfolio processes would add significant value, there would be a lot less pet projects and a lot more than 27% of executives would be involved in prioritising project investments.

What are your thoughts on improving these stats?



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