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Companies Strive for Innovation Yet Shy of Risk It Brings, Planview Study Reveals

Austin, TX, — January 11, 2011 — Product development leaders know they need to drive increased innovation, yet are challenged by their companies' risk-averse cultures coupled to an inability to effectively manage resources, a new report by Planview reveals.

The company, a leader in the portfolio management space, today released the findings of its second annual Product Portfolio Management Benchmark Study, which polled nearly 1,000 respondents from a cross section of industries across the globe.

The News

As part of an ongoing focus on how product portfolio management can drive more profitable results for product-focused organizations, in the fourth quarter of 2010, Planview commissioned a survey targeting those responsible for products and product portfolio decisions and management.

Conducted by Appleseed Partners and OpenSky Research, both independent third party consulting and research firms, the study consisted of an online quantitative survey, preceded by a qualitative phone survey, and analysis of the results. The full report is available here:

Key Takeaways

The new benchmark study shows that aligning resources with high-priority initiatives is a top pain point, and adapting to changing business conditions is a key risk factor. Further, survey results indicate that respondents are concerned with driving innovation quickly enough -- and in a capacity that is responsive to their customers' needs and market demands.

Respondents cite their Top 3 Pain Points:

  • Having too many projects for their resources
  • Decisions that go back and forth and are made late or ineffectively
  • Not being able to drive innovation fast enough

Respondents cite their Top 3 Risks:

  • Managing changing priorities as business conditions change
  • Speeding time to market -- missing competitive or market windows
  • Developing the wrong product by missing the voice of the customer or market requirements

What We Say

"Coming out of the recession, leading organizations are focused on innovating, and want to do so quicker. Their fear is not being responsive enough to the changing market," said Linda Roach, vice president of marketing and executive sponsor of the survey, Planview.

"With nearly two-thirds of the respondents saying they are focused on improving the process of product development, it is clear that they are looking to make strides to move offerings through their product pipeline at a faster clip," continued Roach.

What They Say

"A key take-away from the benchmark study is that the recession has driven a need for better processes and prioritization. Companies want to be sure that their precious resources are aligned to products with the greatest strategic and financial returns. Yet, many respondents report a reliance on manual approaches, such as spreadsheets to manage complex product portfolios," said Maureen Carlson, partner, Appleseed Partners.

"It is clear that companies are less cost conscious and more concerned with missing growth opportunities than they were last year. Product development executives are focused on finding better solutions for resource capacity planning and a more holistic, data-driven approach to prioritize and manage their product portfolios," said Carlson.

For a copy of the full survey report, please visit To make inquiries or comments about the survey or report, or for permission to use portions of this report in the public domain, please contact

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Melissa Anthony
(512) 619-9454