The study represents a milestone in acknowledging the reality of portfolio management in German companies. For the first time, we can name clear factors and factorial groups positively influencing existing portfolio maturity. We now have four clusters of portfolio management user types that allow selective self-assessment, and building on this, we allow for a development towards higher maturity.

A large, promising area for further research and practical trials remains and is valuable for further investigation. Without having discussed it further in this study, we are sure of having found different types of portfolio management users separated by content. One possible result could be that we investigated different portfolio processes during the study, which we can no longer separate, e.g., a more strategic (verbal, visual, collaborative) or a more controlling-oriented (process-based, data-orientated, operational) PPM process. Answers to these questions would be of great interest to software integrators and developers, as it would fundamentally change the way they construct their concepts, processes and graphical user interfaces. How can mathematical-analytic procedures be made more approachable than they are today? How could the commonly practiced communicative use of portfolio management be used to further support R&D guidance?

Portfolio management will continue to play a very large, and probably even larger role in product development. The continuing professionalization is therefore in everyone’s best interest, as the products and services it facilitates, or the termination of economically insensible projects, whose resources could better be used elsewhere, are important and valuable to all of us. From the perspective of those companies conducting research and development, portfolio management is a discipline every company can improve in. One finding of this study is that there is no one company which, measured by the boundaries of possibility, is doing a perfect job.

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The long-term success of an industrial company is largely dependent on the life cycle of its products and the innovative capacities to further develop these products.

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