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Analysts & Thought Leadership

Analysts Detail Correlation Between Tech Solutions and Performance for Project-Based Businesses


In mid-2012, two independent research organizations published unique reports about the best practices of top-performing, project-driven organizations. Each had their own focus on the subject matter regarding the emphasis of their research metrics or how differing project-based companies can be collectively considered successful despite a wide variety of nomenclature, product offerings, and organizational structures. Regardless of their intention; however, both came to a remarkably similar conclusion.

Best Practices of Top-Performing (Best-in-Class) Professional Services Organizations

Research Organization

Services Performance Insight

Aberdeen Group

Publication

2012 Service Lifecycle Management Maturity, February 2012

Project Management in Professional Services: Managing People for Profits, July 2012

KPIs of Top-Performers

Top 5% in:

  • Annual revenue growth
  • Earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization (EBITDA)
  • Annual revenue per billable consultant
  • On-time project delivery
  • Percentage of reference-able clients

Top 20% in:

  • % of projects completed on time or early
  • % of projects delivered within budget
  • % of reduction in time-to-decision over the past year
  • % of employees Which exceeded their performance metrics during annual reviews

How Top-Performers are Distinguished

High rankings in maturity level characteristics in:

  • Resource management; visibility from prospect to project to ensure the right resources with the right skills are available when needed
  • Structured or standardized service delivery processes
  • Solid project management; visibility into the schedule, resources, deliverables and risks to ensure projects are delivered on time and on budget
  • Accurate and timely project accounting

Best-in-Class when compared to all others have nearly double:

  • Central visibility to skill sets of available resources
  • Decisions that are consistently made from a single version of data
  • Real-time visibility into all project milestones and schedule status

Key Business and Technology Capabilities

PSA plus:

  • Integrated information systems of ERP and CRM
  • Standardized service delivery processes of sales pipeline, billable utilization and meeting margin targets
  • Resource management; resource/workforce scheduling; skill matching
  • Workflow productivity measurements
  • Project scheduling and change management
  • Knowledge management (KM)

ERP plus:

  • Project scheduling
  • Project costing
  • Time tracking against projects
  • Change management
  • Resource/workforce scheduling
  • Expense tracking against projects
  • Project Portfolio Management (PPM)
  • New request management
  • Post project completion service management
  • Subcontractor management

If PSA is not enough and ERP is not enough…

Juxtaposed against one another, the Aberdeen Group and Services Performance Insight agree that the more typical software offerings are not successful in providing project-driven organizations applicable solution.

Services Resource Planning (SRP) is a solution designed to improve upon ERP with the project-based business solely in mind. Specifically, where PSA, ERP, and CRM all fall short, SRP saves the day by giving project-based service organizations the tools to access:

  • Accurate project data
  • Deep visibility into resources, skill set, individual capability, and scheduling
  • Universal tracking of client issues
  • SRP and ERP integration
  • Broad visibility into all active projects

For more information on how Planview considers Services Resource Planning (SRP) the key solution to the technology gaps discovered by Services Performance Insight and Aberdeen Group, take a look at The Planview Approach to Service Resource Planning.

Did you take one of these surveys conducted between 2011 and 2012? Are these findings reflective of your company's technology requirements? Share by leaving a comment below.

Related posts: SRP and PSA -- There IS a Difference -- Part 1 and Managing Project-Based Businesses in Turbulent Times

Going Hybrid, and I’m Not Talking about Cars (it’s about the Cloud)


Wired.com - The Cloud: Not Just for Startups AnymoreThe word "hybrid" typically conjures images of the Toyota Prius (only for now if Ford has anything to say about it), but in the world of enterprise software it is about evolving business models. Actually, and more importantly, going hybrid is about bringing more value to customers by providing them with choice -- the choice of cloud-based or on-premise software deployment models. Over the past several years we at Planview have put this hybrid approach at the core of our business. We have embraced SaaS as a transformational business initiative, but at the same time continue to embrace the on-premise model as well. Providing choice is ultimately about being customer-driven versus fighting industry-centric religious wars about business models and technologies. Without question, going hybrid has brought more value to our customers, partners, and shareholders. For more on this transition and how a cloud-hosted approach made it happen, see my recent article on WIRED.

The Cloud: Not Just for Startups Anymore

"Clearly cloud-based software solutions are here to stay. Whether in consumer or enterprise markets, the cloud has transformed the way we deploy and consume software applications. For enterprise customers, cloud-based software radically…" Read the full article.

Optimizing Your Resources: Learn from the Military


Now more than ever, organizations are asked to do more with less. Pressures mount, competition is building, and there seems to never be enough resources to tackle what needs to be done. Then, when resources are finally allocated to strategic work, the work ends up getting delayed because the people are pulled off on emergencies, managers' pet projects, and other interruptions.

10 Proven Military Strategies for Better Resource Management: Avoiding Custer's Last StandThe industrial age only took root in the 19th century, and the formal organizational structures we know and love didn't begin until the 20th century. And resource management hasn't evolved much since then except for matrix reporting and project-based work, which are fairly recent concepts.

But there is a place we can turn to for advice. Military strategy has been around for thousands of years, at least as far back as Sun Tzu (500 BC), and through the ages of Alexander the Great, Julius Caesar, Hannibal, Napoleon, and on to the present day ‒‒ each commander learning from and building upon the principles that came before.

Many of these principles deal with the effective use of limited resources. Business leaders can look to these principles to solve what is arguably their #1 problem: resource constraints.

From Sun Tzu's 13 principles to Napoleon's 115 maxims, to the countless other strategies, there are hidden gems of resource management advice that is as relevant today as they were back then.

Complexity theory states that complex systems have simple roots. In line with this, Sun Tzu said:

"There are not more than five musical notes, yet the combinations of these five give rise to more melodies than can ever be heard.

There are not more than five primary colors (blue, yellow, red, white, and black), yet in combination they produce more hues than can ever been seen.

There are not more than five cardinal tastes (sour, acrid, salt, sweet, bitter), yet combinations of them yield more flavors than can ever be tasted."

It is the same with strategies and tactics; a select few principles can be used in countless combinations and variations.

Napoleon knew this all too well and is often cited as the greatest military strategist in history, despite his notable losses at Waterloo and Russia. His principles gave birth to many of today's most commonly used military strategies.

There are countless other military principles that apply to resource management as well. In looking through them, and in the spirit of Sun Tzu's simplicity, I've narrowed thousands of years of principles and maxims down to what I feel are the ten core strategies directly applicable to resource management that can be used in a multitude of combinations. From "Economy of Force" to "Concentration of Force" to "Divide and Conquer," these strategies, when understood correctly, are powerful ways to optimize your resources. Take a sneak peak in this latest infographic and download my new white paper, 10 Proven Military Strategies for Better Resource Management: Avoiding Custer's Last Stand.

I'd love to hear your thoughts. Is your organization struggling with making the most effective use of limited resources across major projects, minor work efforts, and ongoing support and "keep the lights on" work? Once you read the white paper, I'd love to know which strategy(s) you are currently employing, or have decided to try, and which are most useful. Are there other strategies not listed that you've used with success?

P.S. If you haven't yet taken a few minutes to share your experience in the new benchmark study on the State of Resource Management and Capacity Planning, I invite you to do that now.

The survey, which is being conducted by Appleseed Partners and OpenSky Research, and is sponsored by Planview, will remain open until December 10th. We want to hear from you! Participate in the study by clicking here.

New PMO Directions Explored at Gartner 2012 PPM: Reasons Why You Should Rethink Your PMO


In my presentation at the Gartner 2012 PPM Summit, I discussed "Delivering What Matters: Focusing the PMO on the Big Picture." I presented a number of themes, all of which, to my delight, aligned quite nicely with the collective keynotes and presentations at the conference.

There's no doubt that the role of the PMO is changing, and it was nice to see this issue play such a prominent role at the summit.

Seven common themes that emerged include:

  1. Gartner PPM SummitEmbrace Multiple Approaches -- Project management is no longer about a one-size-fits-all methodology. There's a right time for an agile approach and a right time for a more directive waterfall approach. Even large programs can take the directive path or be more adaptive. An enlightened PMO will have guidelines for when to use which.

  2. Agile is Here to Stay -- Especially for efforts with high uncertainty, or where exact requirements are not clearly definable, more and more organizations are moving to adaptive and iterative development methods. It's reached a critical mass, and the PMO can no longer afford to stick its head in the sand concerning Agile. Equally, the PMO must be aware of the culture shift it requires and manage change accordingly.

  3. The PMO is a Vital Component of Managing Change -- Constant change is the new normal. But when an organization has their vital information segregated across multiple spreadsheets and systems, it becomes nearly impossible to adjust the sails when the wind changes. The PMO is in a unique position to provide the knowledge, processes, and tools that support alignment and integration across strategy, operations, and finance. As such, it can no longer afford to keep a narrow focus on project execution methodology.

  4. The PMO Can Foster Innovation -- To thrive in today's dynamic environment, an organization needs to allow room for a number of higher risk innovation projects, within reason. The PMO can help create effective portfolio management and governance methods to aid the organization in achieving a balanced strategic portfolio of projects, products, and services.

  5. It's Not Just About Projects Anymore -- The handwriting is on the wall. Gartner's saying it. Other industry analysts are saying it. And I've been saying it for a few years now. An organization is an ecosystem, and the best way to organize work and resources is byproduct, not project. That's not to say you shouldn't manage projects, but those projects must tie to products (internal and external). In other words, value definition lies with products. But don't think of products as "hard goods and soft goods" as much as a certain set of functions, features, and capabilities that allows the end user or customer to function effectively, which takes us to our next item…

  6. Think in Terms of Capabilities -- In the olden days (i.e. the last few decades), IT and other service delivery functions were focused on solutions. In the extreme, solutions were conceived with a misguided view of what the providers "thought" people wanted or needed. Now trends are showing a shift toward speaking to business and functional capabilities. You're no longer implementing a software product; you're implementing the ability to xyz (pick the function of your choice).

    In the context of portfolio management, you may be implementing the ability to capture ideas, filter demand, govern intake, prioritize investments, assess resource capacity, and so on. And in the context of software projects, you might be implementing the ability for the business or the end users to achieve some measurable benefit. The key is that projects (aligned with products) must deliver certain capabilities, which are tied to measurable outcomes, which takes us to…

  7. It's the Outcomes, Stupid -- At the PMO Symposium in Orlando late last year, and at the recent Gartner PPM Summit outcomes and benefits realization were prevalent themes. Outcomes, both at the business/functional level and at the enterprise/strategy level are how we measure the value delivered through optimal use of constrained resources and funding.

    Indeed, there were a number of sessions at the Summit that talked about value mapping, and Mark Langley, President and CEO of PMI, spoke of the importance of benefits realization. Astute PMO leaders are quickly recognizing the need to bridge organizational gaps, and promote outcomes-based and capabilities-based thinking across all sectors. This is where the PMO can earn their proverbial seat at the table.

Speaking of seats at the table, in my white paper, A Seat at the Table: Making your PMO More Relevant in Times of Change, I discuss many of the above themes including the PMO as a change agent and integrator; the shift to capability and outcome-based thinking; and the importance of thinking of the organization as an ecosystem (bridging projects, products, services, and more).

It's refreshing to see the industry converge on these themes, as was definitely visible at Gartner PPM Summit. I'd love to hear your thoughts. Is your organization recognizing any of these shifts, and if so, what steps are being taken to get ready?

If It Looks Like a Cloud, Talks Like a Cloud…


Cloud-based solutions are clearly here to stay, which is a really good thing for enterprises and consumers. In the enterprise, software-as-a-service (SaaS) offerings have been the dominant cloud-based solution in recent history. More and more organizations are reaping the economic benefits of adopting SaaS offerings across a broad range of software categories.

While this mega-trend continues to gain momentum, there is an ongoing back-channel conversation that is oblivious to most of the business consumers of SaaS offerings. The architects, software developers, CTOs, industry analysts, and even investors have been engaged in a dialog about the best way to build SaaS solutions.

Planview Hybrid Model Benefits: Overview of the SeriesAt the end of last year Gartner published research defining three styles of cloud-based solution architectures -- cloud-hosted, cloud-optimized, and cloud-native¹. The previously mentioned conversation has been somewhat cloud-native biased in the past, at least within the Independent Software Vendor (ISV) community. "Real SaaS" meant multi-tenant. That was absolutely the case in the early days of SaaS as it was the only viable option. Today ISVs have a wide range of advanced technologies, including virtualization that brings a completely new set of vendors and solutions to the SaaS game.

The cloud-hosted approach has represented a powerful agent of change for Planview. Over the past two years we have seen approximately half of our new customers choose our SaaS offering. This has brought a new level of value to our customers as well as transformed the economics of our own business model in a positive way. Cloud-hosted technologies have allowed us to combine a proven enterprise software solution with the economics of SaaS -- a powerful combination for both our customers and Planview.

As we have gone through this transformation we have learned a lot and gained new insights from our customers. Some of these insights relate to the unique capabilities that a virtualization-driven SaaS offering can enable. Over the coming weeks, check out our YouTube channel as we touch on these benefits:

  1. Market leading solution with SaaS economics, today
  2. Deployment flexibility to meet your business needs
  3. Ultimate configurability to support your business processes
  4. Security of your own instance
  5. Rapid implementation for all deployment models
  6. Upgrade on your terms

It is important to note that in a technology industry that is always ready to battle based on strong platform allegiances, that is not our intent (it appears that we can count on Larry Ellison to fight this one for us). Consumers are the ultimate winners, regardless of the cloud deployment model, but we felt it was worth taking a few minutes to talk about some of the relative advantages of virtualization and cloud-hosted technologies.

We look forward to hearing what you think. What cloud framework works best for your organization and why? Share your thoughts and experiences by leaving a comment below. Subscribe to the Planview YouTube Channel and watch more videos related to this topic.

¹ Gartner, Inc. (Eric Knipp), "Creating Cloud Solutions: A Decision Framework, 2011" Sept 6, 2011.

Q1 Reflections


The beginning of any new year brings with it a familiar cadence of activities for our organization. Most revolve around ramping up a fiscal year with our sales team and launching the latest version of Planview Enterprise®. This annual cycle certainly represents one of the most intense times of the year. Preparing for sales and consulting meetings, launching the latest release, and the subsequent GA process make Q1 a big push across the country.

Part of our product launch plan is a comprehensive process of touching base and briefing all of the industry analysts that cover the portfolio management space. Every year, as the portfolio management segment continues to grow, this activity gets larger and larger. Globally, we are interacting with close to 30 analysts across a wide range of sectors. This body of work always provides interesting insights I thought I'd share a few highlights.

Enterprise software is a good place to be. In addition to introducing our latest products, part of these briefings is a review of our previous year performance as a company. We were fortunate to have a very strong 2011, a record year across most metrics. From our analyst meetings it was clear that we did better than average, but it was equally clear that enterprise software companies across the board had strong years. As we continue to read varying reports about the state of the economy, software is a strong sector. In short, organizations are still looking to drive efficiencies in their operations and focus their limited capital on innovation -- software is a good investment on both fronts.

Software as a Service (SaaS) continues to gain momentum and drive growth. It is no surprise that the cloud and SaaS are hot trends in software, but the full impact of this trend. We all read about the pure SaaS players that are the poster children for this trend may not be obvious. But the other side are the hybrid companies like Planview that for the past several years have aggressively retooled themselves to leverage the SaaS trend while continuing the commitment to new and existing on-premise customers. In 2011, SaaS represented over half of our new customers, and our SaaS offering created incremental new market opportunities that were not addressable before. The analysts I spoke with recognize that "established" software companies need to be hyper aggressive to serve this new landscape and this has been our approach.

Markets are built by best of breed players. Across the analyst community there is validation that portfolio management is seeing tremendous growth in traditional segments like IT and also in a variety of line-of-business (LoB) segments. IT product portfolio and program management (PPM) has been a vibrant market for many years and these new LoB segments are emerging markets that require commitment and investment to reach their full potential. In my conversations I think it is safe to say that it is the best-of-breed players, like Planview, that are making these investments. The mega-enterprise software players have too broad a product portfolio to apply the focus necessary. They are not agile enough to navigate the dynamics of these new segments. Someday they will look to harvest the opportunities created, but in the mean time, the best-of-breeds will drive forward. This is common in many categories; we are now living it in PPM.

Product Portfolio Management has "Crossed the Chasm." As mentioned previously, we are experiencing a period of rapid growth in the use of portfolio management. One of these areas is the use of PPM by product development teams looking to make the best pipeline selection decisions and ensure the optimal use of their precious engineering resources. This has been a growing trend, but during this year's analyst briefings there was a sense of critical mass to this conversation. Indeed, when posed the question, every analyst I spoke with agreed that this application of PPM has "crossed the chasm." I will spare everyone a lesson on the technology adoption lifecycle, but this is an important moment in the expansion of the portfolio management discipline. If you want to learn more, plan to attend PIPELINE 2012 on May 10.

Just a few observations from our annual analyst briefings, I hope you find them useful.

Highlights from Gartner's PPM and IT Governance Summit -- Part 4: Driving PMO Maturity


Driving PMO MaturitySo far, I've talked about the role of the EPMO, effective PMO communication, and how a PMO can drive innovation in an organization -- all key points from Gartner's recent PPM and Governance Summit. In this last post from this series, I'll talk about the fourth and final point: how PMO maturity needs to be a reflection of -- and a driver of -- organizational maturity.

There are two elements to this. First, a PMO must constantly change to adapt to the growing maturity of the organization. But that's just the passive aspect of this. In a more active role, the PMO needs to indeed drive organizational maturity.

So it's a matter of assessing and then matching the current needs and maturity of the organization (something half of all PMOs fail to do according to Gartner), and then laying out a roadmap to help the organization think in terms of business capabilities and strategic execution.

This leads me to a subtle, but related, topic: the name of the PMO. I've consulted to some organizations where a simple name change better reflected the current role of the PMO and created the right mentality to align the organization. For instance, in one organization with multiple PMOs, I suggested the newly create "Enterprise PMO" be called a Project Support Office instead. First, it removed some of the stigma of "EPMO as methodology police" and better reflected the fledgling PMO's goal to support and integrate the other existing (and more mature) PMOs. As a PMO matures, it might be called a Strategic Execution Office, or Business Capabilities Center, or something that reflects the growing scope and maturity of the PMO.

And mature it must. To make a difference in the organization, the PMO can't just "document the battle" -- they must lead the charge. This means driving toward best practices around business capabilities, optimizing projects and aligning resources based on business value, and leading to faster and more innovative initiatives though adaptive models.

Indeed, as Garner validates in their summit kickoff, rethinking the role of the EPMO; reshaping PMO communication; revitalizing the organization toward greater adaptability and innovation; and reclassifying the PMO as a reflection of -- and driver of -- organizational maturity, will reposition the PMO as a key and vital component of organizational success.

Related post: Highlights from Gartner's PPM and IT Governance Summit -- Part 3: Be an Enabler, Not a Disabler

Highlights from Gartner's PPM and IT Governance Summit -- Part 3: Be an Enabler, Not a Disabler


Be an Enabler, Not a Disabler In my last two posts, I talked about the evolving role of the EPMO and effective PMO communication, two of the four key takeaways from Gartner's PPM and IT Governance Summit. This post will cover the third point, driving competitive advantage and innovation.

Gartner states that traditional governance processes and project management systems crush innovation in organizations -- which is the opposite of what a PMO needs to do if it is to be perceived as valuable to the organization.

I think this is an important point -- that executives want, more than anything, competitive advantage, and that this requires taking more risks, not fewer. With this in mind, effective governance needs to enable an organization to optimize investments that balance out the portfolio within the risk tolerances of the organization.

This means, just like a personal stock portfolio, allowing room for riskier and more innovative projects, where there's more uncertainty and planning is incremental but the potential upside is huge.

It also means that processes must be adaptive and move quickly, unburdened by a one-size-fits-all methodology and an overly cautious attitude. If governance processes are bureaucratic and laborious, and if project management methodologies fare no better, then the organization's growth will be stymied as more adaptive and daring competitors pass them by.

PMOs and their associated processes must be enablers, not disablers. And that, I think, is Gartner's key point here.

In the next post, I'll talk about the last key point from Gartner's summit, Driving PMO Maturity.

Related post: Highlights from Gartner's PPM and IT Governance Summit -- Part 2: Effective Communication

Highlights from Gartner's PPM and IT Governance Summit -- Part 2: Effective Communication


Effective CommunicationIn my last post, I commented on Gartner's points about the evolving role of the EPMO. Now, I'll talk about another of their key points -- that communication is key to PMO success, and that when communicating to executives, "it's more important to be interesting than complete."

As anyone in marketing knows, truer words were never spoken. Gartner illustrated the following common pitfalls when communicating (I'm paraphrasing their points below):

  • Lack of Candidness (All good news):
    For example, communicating the "all green dashboard" where everything looks rosy. To an executive, this raises warning flags. It also sends a message that the culture doesn't allow for candidness in its reporting. It may even send a message that the project sponsor or manager isn't being aggressive enough in their strategy or schedule if there are no issues at all.
  • Communicating Problems without Solutions (All bad news): The presenters used the example of the "deeply troubled project," where it's late and over budget and problems are blamed on scope creep, low morale, unclear priorities, uncooperative sponsors, and so on. Without a recommended solution and evidence of effective leadership, most executives would lean toward either shutting the project down (ignoring sunk costs) or bringing in a new management team to rescue it and get it back on track.
  • Missing the Value: Commonly, a PMO will communicate its charter and include goals such as delivering successful projects, increasing maturity, standardizing processes and tools, and so on. And any metrics included in the charter focus on things such as quality and timeliness of documents, process compliance, tool adoption, and project success. But there is nothing whatsoever about business value or the "products" of the projects. Executives want to know about business value. They also want to know about accountability. They want to know who's responsible for what, and whether everyone’s headed in the same direction as a team.

Returning to the overall challenge posed at the beginning of the session -- "Delivering projects that provide value in turbulent times" -- the presenters cited two enablers: accountability and effectiveness. To achieve these enablers, they suggested focusing on:

  • Reliable results
  • Value-based prioritization
  • Effective leadership
  • Effective communication
  • Organizational Change Management

Overall, I liked their focus on value. As Albert Einstein said, "Strive not to be a success, but rather to be of value." Too many PMOs are inwardly focused, buried in minutia, and struggle to demonstrate value to the organization. If they looked at every bit of communication and asked "How does this portray value to the organization and relevance to the intended audience?" they'd be a lot better off. I'll expand on this in future posts.

Also, I'd suggest that slides, charts and graphs need to be effective as well. Information presentation guru Edward Tufte states that effective visual or graphical communication:

  • Encourages comparative analysis
  • Shows causality
  • Explains with annotations
  • Avoids unnecessary noise
  • Avoids distortions

In my next post, I'll cover Gartner's third point, how a PMO can help drive competitive advantage and innovation, not stifle it.

Related post: Highlights from Gartner's PPM and IT Governance Summit -- Part 1: The Evolving Role of the EPMO

Integrated Portfolio Analysis -- How Did We Get Here and Are We Finally Ready?


Recently, Gartner took a new look at the whole notion of PPM, from an enterprise and IT perspective. For those of you that have seen my previous post, you know that we applaud this change. The landscape outlined in the new Gartner PPM Market Universe is dead on with where portfolio management is headed.

Integrated Portfolio Analysis - How Did We Get Here?A major component of this research is the new Magic Quadrant for Integrated IT Portfolio Analysis Applications. At Planview, we are humbled to be positioned in the Leaders Quadrant in this new Magic Quadrant that redefines the IT portfolio landscape. Rightfully so, the title of this new Magic Quadrant does not include the word "project", because managing projects is just one part of any IT organization. IT organizations provide their internal and external customers with applications and services that run their businesses. Projects are simply a mechanism for driving change within the application and services portfolio, as well as the underlying IT infrastructure. This interplay is at the heart of IT management and hence the new Magic Quadrant.

Certainly we all recognize Gartner's track record for market insight and their influence in the IT community. Gartner's endorsement of "Integrated Portfolio Analysis" is sure to stimulate a lot of conversations in the IT community. But I think it is worth noting several historical milestones that got us to this point.

The first occurred in 2005 when Forrester published what at the time was a seminal perspective on Integrated IT Management or IIM. This report spurred the initial wave of thinking in the portfolio management community on the potential expanded reach of portfolio management. It was also influential in driving Planview's original investment into supporting application and services portfolios as part of our solution. It was probably a little ahead of its time; but Margo, Phil, and team got the ball rolling.

The second moment happened in 2008 with the release of ITIL 4. A significant component of ITIL 4 was the addition of services portfolio management as a formal discipline. This was the next jolt in driving the recognition of portfolios beyond projects. Unfortunately, ITIL 4 momentum was all but squashed by the onset of the economic recession, but ITIL initiatives are beginning to pick up steam again.

The economic recession, and the "new normal" it introduced, brought the third key milestone in this evolution. The intense financial pressure that IT organizations were under drove them to rationalize every aspect of their business. Globally we saw IT organizations go after one of their largest and most costly portfolios with a vengeance -- the application portfolio. The economic recession forced a new level of maturity in application portfolio management.

So that brings us up to today and the latest Gartner research. There is a great opportunity for IT organizations to drive towards an Integrated Portfolio Analysis model. Very few are there today, but when I meet with customers it is clear they see the value, and most are already doing bits and pieces with varying results. Gartner adding its perspective represents another significant milestone in this emerging IT management capability; it will be interesting to see how IT portfolio analysis evolves as a result.

Related post: Brave New PPM World