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Prioritization and Scenario Analysis

Prioritization and Scenario Analysis

The Prioritization and Scenario Analysis capability supports the collection and assessment of all investments before the portfolio plan approval, and the creation and comparison of what-if scenarios. Each capability within the Planview Capability Framework has a distinct set of features and functionality, business processes, best practices, and analytics and reports that deliver value to customers in the form of specific business outcomes.

Processes and Reports

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Prioritization and scenario analysis is a powerful capability that supports portfolio investment decision-making by leveraging what-if scenario planning. By allowing you to create and compare hypothetical scenarios on all potential and active investments, you can view the impact of trade-off decisions and decide which investments to prioritize based on your financial and capacity targets. The iterative planning process ensures that your portfolio has the agility to reprioritize and take in new unplanned work as priorities shift and circumstances change.


Prioritization and Scenario Analysis Process Steps


Prioritization and Scenario Analysis provides a mechanism to collect all potential and existing investments for prioritization and assessment before the overall portfolio plan is approved. As part of this, planners can create and compare various what-if scenarios. In Planview Portfolios, Prioritization and Scenario Analysis is typically performed in tandem with the Capacity Planning, which provides the mechanism to set resource capacity time-phased targets at the relevant organizational level. These targets can be used to analyze demand and make assessments on the organization's ability to continue with or adopt new investments. 

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Capacity planning process flow



Process Step Description
Create/update the portfolio to include all investments that are ready for analysis/approval

A Planning portfolio defines the capacity and demand entities to be used in investment analysis, i.e. where and which targets and demand you wish to analyze in a specified time range (Planning Horizon).

Demand requirements for analysis of investments:

  • Demand must not be in the Investment Approval Status of Pending.
  • Demand must match the selected capacity.
  • Demand must be within the defined Planning Horizon.
  • Demand must be part of the additional portfolio definition.

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Create a scenario

Creating investment and capacity planning scenarios allows you to model different investment decisions and various approaches to balancing investment demand with capacity.

Creating a shared scenario allows you and others who have access to the relevant portfolio to work in a what-if environment until a particular scenario is ready to be published and shared as your organization's investment plan. When working in a shared environment, you and other users review the same proposed investment plan so that each of you can examine and update those portions that affect your respective areas.

A Planning portfolio can also include user-defined scenarios created to model and evaluate different investment decisions and approaches to balancing capacity with demand in a what-if environment. Data in those scenarios can be modified without affecting the corresponding data in the portfolio's relevant financial plan as changes are made.

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Set and maintain portfolio targets/budget and capacity

Analysis of investments is achieved by comparing what’s available—capacity (which can be in the form of resource capacity or a financial budget)—versus demand (derived by the forecast of work in the portfolio).

To carry out and understand portfolio investment planning, it's essential that an accurate recording of your target budget and resource capacity is captured. The detail of the summarized capacity totals can be drilled into via the Financial Planning Detail screens associated with each capacity entity.

Capacity budgets and targets can also be managed from within a Planning portfolio. The Capacity Portfolio Manager shows a summarized capacity total broken down by the capacity slicer in the portfolio definition.

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Rank and prioritize investments

Investment and Capacity Planning provides a mechanism to compile all investments (accepted, in-flight, and potential investments) and carry out an assessment and approval in the context of the whole portfolio. The Rank view within Investment and Capacity Planning provides the ability to sort the list of investments based on subjective or qualitative scoring and prioritization criteria to prioritize investments within the portfolio. This ranking is then used in subsequent screens in Investment and Capacity Planning as sorting criteria.

Investments can be ranked automatically based on criteria and/or manually by the users of each scenario. Investments are displayed in ranked order within a scenario. If no ranking has been applied, investments are displayed alphabetically. If a scenario includes both ranked and unranked investments, unranked investments will display at the top in alphabetical order, and the ranked investments will display below in ascending order of their ranking.


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Planning Manager tile—ranking investments



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Planning Manager tile's Rank view—rank investments automatically



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Analyze against portfolio target

The objective of this step is to confirm the approval of investments within the portfolio targets/constraints of costs and resource capacity.

​The Analyze view provides the ability to approve investments by moving them above the line (accepted) and seeing the impact on overall budgetary constraints and capacity. Any changes to the Investment Approval Status and Internal Priority in the Investment and Capacity screens are "what-if" changes and are not confirmed until the scenario is published to execution.

To analyze investments "above and below the line":

  • Investments in this view are displayed in two trays:
    • The upper tray represents above-the-line investments with Accept or Conditionally Accept statuses.
    • Investments in the lower tray represent below-the-line investments with Refuse or Analyze statuses.
  • If the investments exceeding targets are in the below-the-line investments, it means that while the total of the portfolio will exceed the targets, the current above-the-line investments will not exceed the target.
  • Depending on the selected column set, you can also view different summarized financial information.
  • To make investment decisions (to approve or refuse an investment), open the action menu next to each investment to select the desired status. Here you can also view other information about the investment. Alternatively, you can use a drag-and-drop operation to move the investments between the above the line and below the line trays.


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Planning Manager tile – analyzing investments



For more information:

Shift investment dates and durations

The Shift view provides visibility of where demand exceeds capacity by period, as well as the ability to shift investments to fit within available capacity.

After portfolio investments have been ranked and analyzed, date ranges of approved and conditionally-approved investments are further evaluated. Constraint limitations on specific resource types may be resolved by shifting investment dates, and investments below the line may be approved.


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Planning Manager tile—shifting investments



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Planning Manager—Shift Highlighting Bottom Tray Details



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Planning Manager tile—shift-highlighting the bottom tray details



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Balance against capacity

The objective of this step is to identify resource capacity/demand issues or cost time-phasing issues and to smooth demand across time to plan to deliver the programs within the capacity and time-phased budget targets.

The Balance view allows you to look at investments that have been accepted in the scenario, and the time-profiled impact of those investments against the capacity and budget targets.

To balance investments:

  • In the Balance Investments view, use the category menu to decide which information to view. In this example, we are viewing Labor Currency. You can also view Labor Effort by selecting Labor and Effort. Depending on your usage model, you can also view Expense, Capitalized Costs, and Benefits.
  • The Focus Control option displays the controls available for you to organize the information when you perform drill-down for analysis. The controls allow you to decide how many attributes to be included in the summarization for drill down. You decide which order they should be presented by moving them to the left of the focus control bar. The control on the far left will be the first level of drill down, following by attributes to its right.
  • Information on the grid at the lowest level is editable when you are viewing a user-created scenario or the Shared Scenario if it is editable.
  • Action menus at the program level provide options to view additional information for the program.
  • Action menus at the lowest level provide options to update attributes of the line or to model changes to the demand.
  • Action menus from the Capacity levels provide the option to view the financial plan of the selected capacity to model changes to defined capacity.
  • Use the Scenario options to change the scenario you are viewing or to create and manage scenarios.

Note: it's important to not accidentally model what-if decisions on the Shared Scenario. What-if modeling should be done on user-created scenarios and published to the shared scenario when you are ready to commit to the plan.


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Planning Manager tile—balancing investments


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Baseline portfolio

The purpose of this step is to capture a portfolio baseline in order to create a snapshot of the investment decisions and investments as of the end of the investment planning cycle. As the investment portfolio evolves and the program landscape continues to change, new programs arrive, or planned programs fluctuate in risk, forecasted cost or strategic alignment, a continuous reassessment of investment decisions and priorities will force amendments to the investment planning portfolio. This working version can then be compared against the baseline and variances analyzed.

After creating versions, it's important to assign the correct Working Version or Comparison Version tags to see their respective values in column sets. See Managing Investment and Capacity Planning Scenarios for more information.

The Planned Investments comparison view highlights financial differences between the working version and the comparison version.

The top tray compares financial data differences based on the selected column set. The bottom tray compares investment approval status and rank order.


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Planning Manager tile—Planned Investments pivot view



The Approval Decisions view compares Investment Approval statuses for multiple scenarios.

Selection of scenarios is made in the Investment and Capacity Planning screen's preferences. If no scenarios are selected, this screen compares all scenarios. Investments are displayed in the same way as the bottom tray of the Planned Investments comparison view—by Above the Line, Trade-off, and Below the Line.


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Planning Manager tile—Approval Decisions pivot view



For more information:

Compare scenarios

By comparing multiple scenarios, you and other users who have access to a relevant portfolio can work in a what-if environment until a particular scenario is ready to be published and shared as your organization's investment plan. Data in those scenarios can be modified without affecting the corresponding data in the portfolio's relevant financial plan as changes are made.

If there are multiple scenarios within a Planning portfolio, designate your Working scenario, then compare Planned Investments or compare Approval Decisions to display information to help you identify differences relevant to the financial data, investment approval status, ranking values of investments, and trade-off of approval decisions.

Publish portfolio decisions and adjustments

The purpose of this step is to publish the investment approval decisions that were made to the scenario during the ranking, analyzing, shifting, and balancing of investments versus organizational capacity. Based on the above-the-line (accepted) and below-the-line decisions made during this investment planning process, the Investment Approval Status values are updated accordingly—all accepted programs will be changed to an Investment Approval Status of Accepted. Investment Approval decisions made in a scenario are "what-if" and not visible and live until the publishing process is completed.

  • If the investment approvals have been made in the Shared Scenario then the Publish from the Shared Scenario transaction will make the decisions live.
  • If the investment approvals have been made in another (not shared) scenario then the Publish from Scenario can be used to move the investment decisions to just the shared scenario or to the demand as well.

Note: in addition to investment approval decisions, any amendments to demand data of investments or the capacity/budget targets within the (non-shared) scenario will also be published live and update the financial planning detail screens accordingly for the investments and/or capacity in question.


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Planning Manager tile—publish from the shared scenario



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Planning Manager tile—publish from scenarios created by users (non-shared)



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Close investment

The purpose of this step is to change the status of refused programs to Closed. If the program was in progress, any projects allocated to the program would need to be closed as well to prevent accumulation of additional time and costs.

This step can be executed as part of a lifecycle process or completed manually.

For more information: 



Outputs, Reports, and Analytics

This capability is supported by the following outputs, reports, and analytics:

Type Associated Outputs, Reports, and Analytics Description
Screen Investment and Capacity Planning Pivot to different views that guide you through the process of investment and capacity planning. These views help you analyze capacity and demand data in multiple ways by examining different capacity and demand dimensions. Some views let you compare scenarios to display information that assists you in understanding the impact investment decisions within different scenarios have on balancing demand with capacity.
Analytic WRK31 - Work Portfolio Financial Analysis Work portfolio report that allows the analysis of project and portfolio financial plan data, including effort (FTEs/Days/Hours) or financial data (Cost/Benefit/Revenue). A single financial planning version is selected and the data type selected based on type and/or specific accounts. The slicer can be any work alternate structure or a line attribute of the selected accounts.
Analytic WRK32 - Work Portfolio Financial Burndown Comparison Work portfolio report that allows the comparison of one/many versions of project and portfolio financial plan data, including effort (FTEs/Days/Hours) or financial data (Cost/Benefit/Revenue).
Analytic WRK33 - Project Cost or Revenue/Benefit Bubble Work portfolio report that can select cost or revenue/benefit based measures from the financial planning data to drive bubble size.
Analytic WRK34 - Work Portfolio Investment Balance Bubble Work portfolio report, based on financial plan data, where the user can select benefit/revenue measures for the X axis, cost-based measures for the bubble size, and a risk-based attribute for the Y axis.


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