Programme & Portfolio Management Maturity

Rob Llewellyn By Rob Llewellyn

Programme & Portfolio Management Maturity

For some firms, programme and portfolio management (PPM) involves a mad scramble to stay on top of daily demands, a shortage of resources and too little time. These symptoms do not describe an environment that breeds success, but they are all too common and reflect “Level One” (of five) in Gartner's Programme and Portfolio Management Maturity Model.
The maturity model can be used as a tool to decide quickly what PPM improvements should be made to enhance an organisation's ability to optimise investments, execute change and deliver value. The model consists of five interdependent core dimensions that are of critical importance in PPM. These are People, PPM Practices and Processes, Value and Financial Management, Technology and Relationships.


Two Key Findings

In a post from Gartner last week called IT Score Overview for Programme and Portfolio Management the author shares two key findings, which, whilst are not new to those that already understand the importance of programme and portfolio management, should help drive the message home to more people, which can only be a good thing. These are:

  • Project, programme and portfolio management, when functioning as well-integrated practices, are the key enablers that allow organisations to identify and execute strategic change.
  • Any meaningful undertakings to enhance or evolve the program and portfolio management (PPM) function must pay more than lip service to organizational structure, business model and culture to have any chance of success.



Gartner's recommendations, for those that want to upgrade their PPM maturity include:

  • Focus first on helping the organization make well-informed investment choices. This will improve the odds of project success more than any other factor.
  • If your organisation requires enterprise-wide change and capabilities, it is worth the effort to pursue Level 4, where enterprise PPM practices are built.
  • Identify objectives for your enterprise, and use them to identify the most salient improvement opportunities for your enterprise.
  • Meticulously manage the change involved in maturing/improving your PPM capabilities.

It takes the right type of leader to understand how project, programme and portfolio management work together, their importance, and the different skills, attributes and capabilities required for each.
Read Gartner's report: IT Score Overview for Program and Portfolio Management
Listen to Rob Llewellyn talk about transformation capabilities and read the article he refers to.