Project Management

Project Portfolio Dashboard – Overview and 3 Examples

Dovile Miseviciute ·

Passionate content marketer looking to bring better solutions to the project management space. 2020 - Present Marketing specialist at Teamhood. 2014 - 2020 Marketing manager for Eylean.

project portfolio dashboard

Managing the project portfolio is no easy feat. It requires knowledge, experience, and a good sense of priorities as well as direction. None of these can be attained quickly and are usually learned through trial and error. However, there are tools that help in tracking the most important metrics and in ensuring you stay on top of everything, one of which is the project portfolio dashboard.

This post aims to define what the project portfolio dashboards are usually composed of, why they are useful, and provide you with a few examples to get a better sense of actual usage. Curious to learn more? Then let’s dive in.

What is a Project Portfolio Dashboard?

A project portfolio dashboard is a tool that helps teams and managers monitor the core information from multiple projects.

In having such a tool, the responsible person does not need to go to each project for the required information and instead can find everything in one place. Depending on the projects in the portfolio, the information contained in the dashboard may differ. While the dashboards themselves vary in size and shape depending on the selected tools to combine them.

Nonetheless, all such dashboards are created with the same goal in mind – summarizing the most important information in one place. Learn more about the process of project portfolio management.

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Components of a Project Portfolio Dashboard

As mentioned, project portfolio dashboards differ depending on the projects, industry type, and the tools used to combine them. However, there are some common elements found in most dashboards. Here is the list of the common inclusions along with their provided value.

  1. Timelines for the different projects. This element can consist of a graph or simple start and end dates to let you know the duration of each project in the portfolio.
  2. Overall status marker. Usually depicted as a marker of color that lets the viewer understand the project status at any given moment.
  3. Budget tracker. Compares the planned and actual costs of the project that have already accumulated.
  4. Schedule Performance Index (SPI). Indicating if the project is still on schedule, ahead, or behind.
  5. Risk overview. A list of risks that are in play at the given moment or a visual marker noting the risk level of each project.
  6. Resource utilization metrics. Allows to see if there is a space to use more of one or several resources.
  7. Comparison of completed vs remaining tasks. To show how much of the actual work is yet to be done.
  8. Overdue tasks. Indicating the work which is lagging behind and needs to be addressed or reevaluated.
  9. Planned vs actual hours spent. A metric to oversee the progress in terms of the work hours in the project.

These are just some of the most popular components you will find in a project portfolio dashboard. Depending on what you may need to track, all or just a few of them could be included in your chosen solution.

Benefits of a Project Portfolio Dashboard

While it may seem like the project portfolio dashboard is just another tool in your larger project management arsenal, it is quite different when you look at the reason behind its usage. This tool was created specifically for those responsible for multiple projects and provides a high-level overview to quickly assess where to direct their focus. While there are quite a few benefits of using such solutions, the main ones can be summarized into these points:

  • One-stop overview of multiple projects
  • Live data pulled into the reports without a manual interference
  • A beneficial guide for where your focus should be placed
  • Easier understanding of process efficiency

Having said that, it is important to customize the project portfolio dashboard to your needs. This way you can ensure the metrics depicted in it are valuable and provide insights into the process. In case you are unsure what should be included in your dashboard, start with a basic setup offered in your project management software and then adjust according to your needs as they occur.

Project Portfolio Dashboard Examples

To give you a better idea of what the project portfolio dashboards may look like, here are a few examples along with a short explanation of how they might be used.

Project Portfolio Management Dashboard

project portfolio dashboard

To start off, this first example depicts a portfolio overview that overlooks several projects and visualizes their data. In the example above, you can see:

  • The start and end dates for each individual project
  • The budget allocated to each of the projects
  • SPI (Schedule Performance Index) which gives a valuation if the project is still on schedule, ahead, or behind. Values below 1 indicate the project is behind, and values above 1 indicate that the project is ahead of schedule.
  • EV (Earned Value) indicates how much value the completed project phases have already created
  • Progress percentage indicates how much of the project has been completed.

Lastly, each project has a color marker next to its name. This is assigned manually and is a quick status marker that allows you to define how well the project is coming along. Such a project portfolio dashboard template can be used to manage several projects in various fields. Allowing you to track the key metrics.

Cost and Performance Project Portfolio Dashboard

project portfolio dashboard examples

If you need to track the budget as well as the cost of your project, this next one of the project portfolio dashboard examples will prove to be of use. In the picture above, you can see a portfolio dashboard that displays:

  • Current status of the project
  • Overall allocated budget
  • Currently available budget
  • A list of items that are yet to be completed

Here, each project’s metrics are visualized separately. However, they are summarized enough to give you a better understanding of how the cost and budget may be reallocated.

R&D Progress Project Portfolio Dashboard

project portfolio dashboard

Our third project portfolio dashboard example shows the tracking of item progress throughout the different projects. As you can see in the image above, it lists the information for three different projects side by side. Here you will find information about:

  • Remaining items in each of the projects
  • The overall item progress chart visualizes how many items are already completed and how many of them are left
  • List of items due this week gathered from all three projects

While this may not be as focused as a portfolio overview, such a dashboard gives insight into the item progress for each of the projects. Allowing managers to check what is going on without having to check in with each team individually.

Project Portfolio Dashboard Template

As you can see in the examples above, dashboards differ based on the team and industry using them. However, that does not mean you need different tooling depending on your industry. All of the examples above have been generated using Teamhood, a visual project management solution for high-performing teams.

project portfolio dashboard template

To give you an even better idea of how it works, I have included a live demo template for you to explore. Follow the link below to open a demo dashboard and get to know how your portfolio management efforts can benefit from a tool like this as well.

Ready to start tracking your projects? Register for a free Teamhood account today.

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