Top 5 PPM Project Portfolio Management Software in 2020

If project management means doing things right all the time, then project portfolio management (PPM) means doing the right things at the right time. An enterprise usually has business goals and strategies. Each department may propose, sponsor or implement projects that will help the company reach these business goals. As a result, everyone would be competing to have the resources and funds from a limited source. To help in the selection, optimization, and oversight of project investments, senior executives use portfolio management to make sure that approved projects align with the company’s goals, strategies and time frame.

The Top 5

Online project and portfolio management software are now capable of providing a top-down approach to help users manage projects and resources across the enterprise. Instead of using manual tools, desktop software, or portfolio application for each project environment, enterprises now prefer a single, company-wide system that can give a single version of the state of all projects and portfolios, and transparently show the performance information needed by senior management. Thus, they are able to monitor the actual progress and compare it to their strategic plans as close to real time as possible. The top portfolio management software also have an intuitive interface, highly visible information, multiple views, and access to both overview and granular details, as well as a responsive customer support.

1. is a team management software that enables users to visually plan, organize, and track in a central collaborative space. They can customize the columns to show the information they need. The software provides a big picture, whether timelines, files, calendar, Kanban boards, and any other relevant and usable data. Its Enterprise plan, aside from essential features, also includes advanced features and views, more integrations and automations, and unlimited dashboards. It also has more security features, one-on-one training, and a dedicated customer success manager. Those interested in can contact sales for a quotation. Also, a free 14-day trial period is available.

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2. Sciforma

Sciforma PPM is a robust software solution that allows PMOs and project delivery leaders to achieve higher growth and reach strategic objectives through more efficient and effective management of the project portfolio. Functionally scalable, PMOs (no matter what the PPM maturity) can take advantage of Sciforma’s critical PPM capabilities: portfolio and program, resources, demand, project planning, time tracking, and collaboration to make smarter, data-driven decisions. Discover powerful portfolio status overviews, project health scores, portfolio simulations, strong capacity planning, and much more.

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3. Clarizen

Clarizen is an online project management software that provides an enterprise collaborative work management solution. It enables users to share goals, simplify work, and increase accountability. It supports different work styles and methodologies across the enterprise to increase effectiveness, and real-time information allows users to pro-actively realign projects to strategies. The Enterprise edition includes unlimited number of projects, programs, and portfolios. It is also capable of handling unlimited number of issues, risks, and requests. Clarizen Eagle is a collaboration application that helps executive teams manage and track key initiatives. The tool helps them align management around shared goals, with real-time visibility into action items and KPIs. Pricing can be requested directly, and a free 30-day trial period is offered.

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4. Mavenlink

Mavenlink is an online project management software with enterprise portfolio management features. It is a modern collaborative platform that helps users elevate the operational and financial performance of their business. Mavenlink Enterprise includes team collaboration, project management, project accounting, resource planning, and business intelligence features. It has a portfolio management tool that enables users to create project groups to quickly assemble programs and portfolios of projects. They are able to get full visibility into the status of portfolios, and see which projects are falling off track. Those interested can contact the sales team for pricing. The software can also be tried free for 10 days.

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5. Jira Software

Jira Software is an online issue and project tracking software that is popular among software development teams. However, it is more than just a bug tracker with its many features and integrations. Portfolio for Jira allows users to build a plan, see the big picture, track its progress, and easily share the information with other stakeholders. With a visual timeline, they can easily get visibility across teams and projects in a single place. Therefore, it is easy to see whether a plan is on track or not. Other features include the ability to manage the capacity of the team, communicate plans and progress to others, and create different scenarios in a sandbox. Pricing depends on the number of users, and whether hosted on the cloud or self-hosted.

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Project Portfolio Management Software Guide

The Need for a Portfolio Management Software – Large projects are usually more complex. The additional complexity results in more challenges for the project to be successful. The use of project management software helps mitigate the risks by identifying early the problematic areas, as well as enforcing best practices. As organizations gain more experience and success in delivering projects, they are able to take on more. However, following PM processes on individual projects may not be enough to manage all of them successfully.

A project portfolio management software is a tool that provides companies the visibility, oversight, and capabilities to help them prioritize and manage current projects and resources, oftentimes simultaneously, and even future ones. Users now have a central platform to manage overall project efforts. Deciding where to invest the company’s time, budget and staff can now be based on factual information.

PM vs EPM vs PPM

Software vendors offer a variety of project management products that can take on a single function or perform expanded capabilities. Some sell systems that are separate and modular, while others sell integrated all-in-one suites.

Project management (PM) software are products that enable users to perform project planning, tracking, and monitoring, usually, of individual projects. Project managers use the software to know who is supposed to be doing what task by when. PM applications also promote collaboration among team members. Project visibility is shown through features such as milestones, Gantt charts, budgeting, calendars and timesheets.

Enterprise project management (EPM) software are products similar to PM software but handle a greater number of individual projects. They are more attractive to larger companies simply because of scale. EPM solutions facilitate day-to-day project management and delivery with greater capacity. It is ideal for multiple simultaneous projects across all departments.

Project portfolio management (PPM) software, or simply portfolio management software, are products that enable users to handle a collection of projects, programs, and even other portfolios, and their relationship with the business and with one another. These systems can provide information about the performance and resource demands of current projects. They can also provide information on future projects and their impact. Users are able to see the dependencies between projects and the rest of the business, as well as where resources and skills are invested.

Core PPM Software Functionality

Pipeline management, also called pipeline assessment and analysis, is a PPM feature that helps users determine whether a project or projects can be finished with the time and resources available. Assessment is provided by allowing managers to have a constant and real-time overview of projects and resources.

Resource distribution enables users to allocate company resources as needed. The feature allows the management and distribution of financial, inventory, technical, and human resource. It may include ‘what-if’ scenario models that can be tested across the portfolio.

Change management in PPM systems provide a central repository of change requests. Users are able to review and assess inquiries as they arise, and match available resources to the demand. This feature also provides monitoring capability to project timelines and budgets in real time.

Financial administration can be used by managers to show the anticipated financial value of projects in relation to the company’s objectives and priorities. Financial managers are able to see updated financial progress as it happens, and before project completion, to accurately predict if a project will fail to meet its objectives.

Risk management in PPM software allows users to analyze the risk present in each existing and forthcoming project. Thus, they are able to determine confidence levels across the portfolio. They can evaluate levels on a categorical basis, and assist in making financial and resource allocation decisions.

Other PPM features to consider are deployment options, mobile access, global support, software integrations, industry-specific functionality, new features release schedule, capability-based best practices, and additional PM or EPM modules.

Common PPM Applications

PPM software systems are usually adopted by enterprises, but mid-sized companies are beginning to adopt them, too. Aside from business objectives and company size, another factor in choosing which PPM system may depend on the company’s specific industry. There are industry-specific PPM vendors for the IT/software development, construction, product development, marketing agencies, healthcare, manufacturing, education, government, insurance, pharmaceutical, and transportation.

Executive Buy-In and Support

Purchasing a PPM software, like any other asset, is an investment. To get approved and implemented, executives need to be convinced that it will be beneficial. Stakeholders must see in the data the kind of return on investment it will have. The CTO must be consulted early on in the buying process. The CIO can understand that a cloud-based PPM system can save costs on infrastructure and reduce burden on IT resources. PPM software can provide the CEO a data-driven way to monitor, evaluate, and predict project success. Last, the CFO will appreciate how PPM software can help reduce budget overruns for successful projects, and avoid implementing low value projects.


Project portfolio management software for enterprise provides many benefits. It can help users prioritize the right projects and programs that leads to increased productivity. Real-time data helps eliminate surprises, since it provides organization leaders a process to identify potential problems early. Also, they can initiate corrective action earlier before any significant financial impact. The software enables executives to build contingencies into the overall portfolio, giving them more flexibility to plan and allocate resources, whether in times of a crisis or a slowdown. Portfolio software for enterprises also come with more advanced security and scale features, and therefore, can cost more. Thus, it is best to take advantage of the free trial period offered to learn and experience more the actual solution.

Jose Maria Delos Santos

Jose Maria Delos Santos

Jose is a subject matter expert and member of the writing team for and Bridge24. He has written hundreds of articles including project management software reviews, books reviews, training site reviews, and general articles related to the project management industry.

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