IT Portfolio Management

DecisionPath's IT Portfolio Management solution (ITPM) helps organizations manage their IT investments to maximize alignment with strategic goals and ROI.

Challenge: Prioritizing, Allocating, and Optimizing IT Spend

Large, steadily increasing IT budgets are a relic of the dot-com past: Today's IT organizations face flat or shrinking staffing profiles; custom development must be outsourced; and capital expenditures are tightly constrained. At the same time, expectations increase for IT's contributions to reducing costs and enabling process innovations to drive bottom-line growth and new capabilities.

These pressures are leading organizations to adapt portfolio management methods previously developed in the financial services sector. These methods help minimize risk, control costs, and maximize ROI for investments in IT projects and systems, considered as a group.

Problem: Existing Tools Track Resources and Time, NOT Business Impact
Existing software solutions in this space help organizations monitor and manage the easily quantified aspects of IT portfolios - namely allocating IT staff and other resources to existing and new IT projects and tracking schedules. They are useful in answering tactical questions such as "What is the status of current initiatives?" and "What would be the impact of changing funding or shifting staff?"

Unfortunately, current ITPM tools are ill suited to answering critical strategic-level questions such as "What are the right initiatives in which to invest?" and "What is the right amount to invest across initiatives?" These questions hinge on issues such as alignment with organizational goals and objectives, and potential synergies or conflicts across initiatives. Information about these factors is inherently qualitative and uncertain, and difficult to capture with quantitative, tactically-oriented tools.

Our Approach: Practice Portfolio Strategies and Measure Impact on Business Goals
Our ForeTell ITPM solution harnesses ForeTell's powerful modeling and "what-if" simulation capabilities to tackle critical IT portfolio-level investment decisions. ITPM allows you to quickly capture business cases for your IT initiatives in terms of:

  • Relevant organizational units at various scales (e.g., agency/corporate, departments...)
  • Proposed IT investments, both current and new (e.g. programs, projects, systems), their objectives, timelines, resource requirements, interdependencies, and risks
  • Organizational capabilities and how IT investments contribute to those capabilities
  • Organizational and IT resources (e.g., processes, staff, resources, IT assets and workforce)
  • Strategic goals of organizational units (including the IT team)
  • Key performance metrics, both organizational for IT initiatives (e.g., cost savings, revenue…)

Next, ForeTell ITPM's simulation engine "test drives" alternate portfolios, automatically projecting the likely outcomes of each investment strategies under different possible futures. You define these futures by making different assumptions about environmental trends and events and possible success or failure of your proposed initiatives. ForeTell ITPM's integrated analytics then help you analyze and compare projected outcomes with respect to cost savings, ROI, capability enhancements, and progress towards organizational goals. Outputs consist of graphic charts (e.g., time series plots) and reports that help you uncover the relative cost-benefit trade-offs and risks across portfolio strategies.

"What-If" Analysis Minimizes Unintended Consequences
Strategies generally fail because of unintended consequences: you are unable to anticipate how they will play out over time with sufficient detail and consistency. ForeTell ITPM provides a unique scenario-based "what-if" method to minimize this problem. By systematically exploring outcomes across diverse possible futures, ForeTell ITPM helps you identify a robust IT investment strategy, which achieves your performance goals while minimizing your risks.