Portfolio Management is the process of managing a portfolio of new products. In the book Portfolio Management for New Products S. J. Edgett, et al, provide the following definition of Portfolio Management:

Portfolio management is a dynamic process, whereby a business’s list of active new product (and R&D) projects is constantly updated and revised. In this process, new projects are evaluated, selected, and prioritized; existing projects may be accelerated, killed, or deprioritized: and resources are allocated and reallocated to active projects. The portfolio decision process is characterized by uncertain and changing information, dynamic opportunities, multiple goals and strategic considerations, interdependence among projects, and multiple decision-makers and locations.

The portfolio decision process encompasses or overlaps a number of decision-making processes within the business, including periodic reviews of the total portfolio of all projects (looking at the entire set of projects, and comparing all projects against each other); making Go/Kill decisions on individual projects on an ongoing basis; and developing a new product strategy for the business, complete with strategic resource allocation decisions.

With fast-tracked technology and the competitive need to get the right product to the market as fast as possible, businesses have a real challenge in managing their product development efforts. Success of the business is based on sound decision making in how to allocate research funds, initiation of new programs or projects, “killing” or accelerating projects, and launching the products with the highest probability of success.

InfoHarvest's Criterium DecisionPlus (CDP) is a multi-criteria decision analysis software tool that has been used to structure, analyze and manage the portfolio decision challenge.  Examples of using CDP to manage project portfolios are available thoughout the Portfolio Management Best Practices Center.

Portfolio Management Best Practices

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