Project Portfolio Earned Value Management Using Treemaps

Project Portfolio value management can be a difficult concept. Companies benefit from project portfolio value management, yet no two companies can use an identical system. This is the focus of a PDF from John H. Cable, Javier F. Ordonez, Gouthami Chintalapani, and Catherine Plaisant of the Project Management Program at the University of Maryland. The key is to measure the performance of various projects against each other for the overall benefit of the company: To manage a portfolio, portfolio managers need an overview of the current state of the portfolio and to identify the problem areas quickly, so as to allocate management attention and resources immediately. In project management, we routinely make trade-offs among cost, schedule, and technical performance. When the project achieves the right balance among the three, the project is successful. Project performance measurement consists of determining, organizing and presenting cost, schedule and performance information in a way that provides project managers with better and more reliable information to analyze these trade-offs in a timely manner. The team from the University of Maryland notes that for project performance measurement to be successful, it must “provide timely information for decision-making and detecting the necessary corrective measures.” Furthermore, reported outcomes must include data on scope, schedule, and other important areas. Gauging value is also a multi-part endeavor. You must consider earned value, or the value of work completed during a given time period, against planned value, or the amount of work that is scheduled to be completed during a given time period. Again, this may sound difficult since every company will score such matters differently. However, sticking to the core of earned value management is wise for every company.

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