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10 Best PPM Tools For 2022: Comparison And Expert Reviews

The Best PPM Tools

Here’s a list of the best PPM tools:

  1. monday.com

    Best PPM tool for workflow customization capabilities

  2. Wrike

    Best for live tracking of team workloads and capacity

  3. Celoxis

    Best PPM tool for resource management capabilities

  4. Smartsheet

    Best for reporting features

  5. Acuity PPM

    Best lightweight PPM tool

  6. Clickup

    Best for multiple portfolio customization and arrangement options.

  7. Forecast.app

    Best PPM tool for AI and automation capabilities

  8. Runn

    Best for growing IT and software teams

  9. Liquid Planner

    Best for managing shared resources and projects across the portfolio

  10. Kantata

    Best portfolio dashboards for professional services teams with 30+ members.

Below you’ll find an overview of each of the 10 best ppm tools, with screenshots, feature overviews, and pricing.

You’ve got visions of growth for your team and your business, but in order to turn those visions into reality, you’ve got to have the right PPM tools to effectively manage projects and resources as you scale.

Growing your team—and your enterprise in general—through bigger and bigger projects is paramount in order to be a competitive company in today’s market. With project portfolio management tools, you can collect and consolidate data about your projects in order to manage risks, resources, timelines, budgets, and much more.

There’s no shortage of great PPM tools out there, which is why we’re providing a detailed evaluation of the best ones in this PPM tool review. Learn what PPM tools do, how the best PPM tools compare, and how to know that you’re picking the ideal software for your project portfolio and business goals.

At the bottom of the post, we include a table summarizing basic info about the tools described in this article as well as an explanation of our selection criteria, so you can understand how we made this list of workflow management software.

ppm tools logos list

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Overview Of The Best Project Portfolio Management Software (PPM Tools)

Any project portfolio management solution from this list should help you with managing projects and strategic alignment across your portfolio. Let’s begin!

1

monday.com

Best PPM tool for workflow customization capabilities

monday.com is a great project portfolio management software because of the way the tool has done away with a lot of the trimmings of typical management tools and focused on simple, visually intuitive layouts that help clarify the sequence of work.

monday.com allows you to allocate & prioritize tasks, use various views in order to see where everything stands, and track multiple projects using dashboards that provide high-level insights in a visual and intuitive way. The platform is completely customizable so you will be able to adjust it to your workflow. The platform also provides powerful and customizable notifications and automation so you and your team can focus on what’s important.

With monday.com you can plan, manage, and track your budgets in an intuitive interface. You can track expenses, income, their dates, and attach needed files to each item. And thanks to the various columns, you can filter items by many different variables such as status, people, text, time, location and others. Formula columns are also available.

While monday.com doesn’t offer traditional automated reporting, it is built to show the big picture at a glance to help you analyze various aspects of your projects and processes. To learn about the different capabilities that help analyze performance, scope out their detailed explanation here.

monday.com’s integrations include project management apps like Slack, Google Drive, Gmail, Google Calendar, Jira, GitHub, Trello, Dropbox, Typeform, and many more, accessible via Zapier.

monday.com costs from $6/user/month and comes with a free 14-day trial. They offer a free plan for up to 2 users.

14 days free trial

From $6/user/month

2

Wrike

Best for live tracking of team workloads and capacity

Wrike is an award-winning, easy-to-use project portfolio management software trusted by 20,000+ organizations worldwide. The tool is suitable for teams of anywhere from five members to an unlimited number of members. It’s highly configurable and includes AI capabilities that can assess at-risk projects and help to optimize your portfolio. Users can customize workflows, dashboards, reports, request forms, and more.

Wrike’s easy-to-use interface enables users to switch between Kanban boards, interactive drag-and-drop Gantt charts, and traditional workload views, providing a full overview of resources in real-time.

Wrike also features advanced portfolio insights including project and team performance reports, resource management and allocation, time tracking, and more. The reporting features provide an accurate overview of your portfolio to help minimize risk. Users can also schedule real-time insights to be sent to your inbox for a picture of overall portfolio health.

Wrike has an easy-to-use, intuitive interface and navigation with distinct spaces, folders, and tasks. Toggle between the home screen and timesheets, dashboards, calendars, reports, and the activity stream.

Wrike offers 400+ pre-built native integrations, including integrations with the most popular file management software from Microsoft, Google, and Dropbox, along with sales and marketing software from Salesforce and Marketo.

Pricing starts at $9.80 per user per month. There are four different price points, including a free version and plans which offer the ability to invite free external collaborators to a paid account.

14 days free trial

From $9.80/user/month

3

Celoxis

Best PPM tool for resource management capabilities

Celoxis is an all-in-one project portfolio management software and work collaboration platform that is successfully adopted by brands like HBO, Rolex, Virgin Care, Adobe, Staples, LG, and Deloitte. Being a full-featured project portfolio management system, Celoxis is still very intuitive and easy to use for teams of all sizes.

With Celoxis, you get comprehensive resource management capabilities. It lets you easily allocate resources based on skills, roles, and availability as well as view cross-portfolio resource workload to optimally utilize your workforce. You will find tools for capacity planning, demand management, and project requests. When it comes to tracking project financials, you can automatically get cost/revenue estimates from your plans. You can also track budgets, costs, and profits in real-time as well as plug billing leaks by timely invoicing your clients.

Celoxis’ reporting features let you slice, dice, and visualize data your way. You can get aggregated information about your projects with fully customizable portfolio planning dashboards. Celoxis comes pre-built with common workflows to help bug/issue tracking and risk management. These workflows are very adaptable to suit your organizational processes without having to resort to emails and spreadsheets.

Celoxis integrates seamlessly with hundreds of popular business applications through first-class integration connectors and web-based API. This includes critical platforms like Jira, Salesforce, QuickBooks Online, Excel, Slack, Google Apps, and more.

Celoxis is one of the few tools that offer SaaS and on-premise deployment options. Celoxis costs $25/user/month with additional commitment discounts.

30 days free trial

From $25/user/month

4

Smartsheet

Best for reporting features

Smartsheet isn’t a dedicated PPM tool but it does have a lot of really good reporting features that make it great for looking at project metrics on both an individual and high level.

So, while there really aren’t many finance or risk management features, Smartsheet offers some above-average reporting and visualization tools that are useful for portfolio management. For example real-time metrics and customizable dashboards that can be made to display specific project data for each project by modifying a drag-and-drop dashboard interface.

Indeed, reporting is the strongest feature of this tool in the context of managing a portfolio of projects, offering the ability to publish stakeholder-facing reporting dashboards and editable summary reports that you can easily export to Excel.

There are lots of project management and resource management tools, which I consider to be fairly standard among this type of software—it’s a well-rounded set of tools for scheduling, assigning resources, tracking work, and assigning and tracking budget. There isn’t a dedicate PPM module in this tool, but you’ll doubtlessly collect all of the project data you need to analyze a portfolio (budget and spend, resource allocation, capacity, etc) and do the rest with a prebuilt integration to a business intelligence tool like Tableau (below).

Smartsheet integrations include Microsoft and Google apps, as well as development essentials like Jira, and useful business apps like Salesforce, ServiceNow, Slack, Box, and Tableau. The platform is extensible through a REST API and webhooks.

Smartsheet costs from $7/user/month, with a minimum of 3 users and a maximum of 25 users. They also offer a 30-day free trial.

30 days free trial

From $7/user/month

5

Acuity PPM

Best lightweight PPM tool

Acuity PPM is a lightweight portfolio management solution that is a great alternative to spreadsheets. The tool includes a beautiful interface to help you manage your project portfolio, as well as fundamental capabilities for getting visibility into your entire project portfolio, managing work intake, prioritizing projects, tracking project performance and status reports, and managing resource capacity.

PMOs can track project portfolios and get insights on project status, store status reports in one place, and view status history across your portfolio. Another great feature is the ability to view portfolio roadmaps and see timing and sequencing for current and potential projects in the portfolio. PMO team members can also score projects using Acuity’s scoring model and then easily prioritize projects.

Acuity PPM pricing starts at $399 per month.

15 days free trial

From $399/month

6

Clickup

Best for multiple portfolio customization and arrangement options.

ClickUp is a project management software that is fully featured and ready to handle your toughest projects. You can access the portfolio feature by clicking on the three dots from the left bar (bottom) and selecting ‘portfolios.’

When you first access this view, it’s empty. This is on purpose, as ClickUp wants you to select which projects have been shortlisted to be in this important view. Once you create your portfolio, you will be able to add or hide fields from the ‘+’ option on top of the table.

Rearrange them as you like by dragging them up or down, color coding them, or using other custom field options. If you decide to open one of the projects, it will do so in a separate tab.

ClickUp offers native integrations with Slack, G Suite, Dropbox, and many more tools, as well as over 1,000+ integrations through Zapier.

ClickUp is free with limited storage for an unlimited number of users. Paid plans start at $5/user/month and offer a free trial.

From $5/user/month

7

Forecast.app

Best PPM tool for AI and automation capabilities

Forecast is a project portfolio management tool that allows users to manage projects, resources, and finances, and includes capabilities for managing entire portfolios and single project milestones or tasks.

Forecast’s auto schedule feature assists with project planning by automatically estimating task durations, assigning resources, and setting deadlines. Other AI capabilities include timesheet suggestions based on historical data, cost and budget estimation, and more. Resource management and business intelligence capabilities allow users to see portfolio capacity. The tool also allows for fixed price, time and materials, or retainer projects to be run side-by-side.

Forecast allows you to see a holistic picture of your project’s financial performance, including revenue, costs, and potential budget concerns. You can also create invoices from timesheets, and track invoicing against budget.

Forecast integrates with mainstream project management tools, as well as with Jira, QuickBooks, Xero, and more.

Pricing starts at £25/user/month, and a 14-day free trial is available.

14 days free trial

From £25/user/month

8

Runn

Best for growing IT and software teams

Runn is a real-time resource planning and PPM software with integrated time tracking and powerful forecasting capabilities. Get a bird’s-eye view of all projects and people to stay on top of your business. Collaborate with co-workers to remain up-to-date and on the same page with remote teams.

Scheduling is easy and intuitive in Runn–simply drag-and-drop to create project phases and allocations. Create project milestones, project notes and add project budgets. Flick between monthly, quarterly and half-yearly views to plan for the short and long term.

Runn makes the data dynamic and visual. Watch the charts and reports update as you plan your projects. You can see visualisations of insights like capacity, workload, availability, and billable and non-billable utilisation. Plan out tentative projects to see how your resourcing plans and portfolio’s bottom line might change if the work gets confirmed.

Track projects, view forecasts, and get relevant metrics within Runn. You’ll have up-to-date data in one place to keep tabs on KPIs like utilization, project variance, and overall financial performance. Use Runn’s built-in timesheets to understand how much time was worked on your projects compared to what was planned, and know how this affects your project budgets.

Runn integrates with Harvest, WorkflowMax, and Clockify for importing project, client, and people data and syncing time entries. With Runn’s API, you can build your own integration to send data across your favorite tools.

Try Runn free for 14 days, no credit card required. Runn has three pricing plans: Free for Startup (5 or fewer people), $10 per person for Pro, and custom pricing for Enterprise. There is also a 20% discount on annual plans.

14 days free trial

From $10/user/month

9

Liquid Planner

Best for managing shared resources and projects across the portfolio

LiquidPlanner is a project portfolio management solution with built-in Planning Intelligence to assist your planning, scheduling, and managing uncertainty.

Predictive scheduling dynamically adapts to change and manages uncertainty. The platform runs Monte Carlo simulations across your portfolio which analyzes the probability of your project outcomes based on variable factors. Therefore, you always know in real-time when work will be done.

With LiquidPlanner, you can also experience automatic resource leveling and priority-based planning across multiple projects and dependencies.

Tip: Setting a target start and finish to a project will assist predictive scheduling in calculating within a given timeframe. Add them from the edit project screen.

LiquidPlanner’s plans start at $15/user/month and offer a 14-day free trial.

14 days free trial

From $15/user/month

10

Kantata

Best portfolio dashboards for professional services teams with 30+ members.

Kantata Industry Cloud for Professional Services is the professional services solution formed by the merger of Mavenlink & Kimble. It supports resource management, project management, financial management, and business intelligence. Additionally, it is designed to foster team collaboration and bring your team together in one view.

Their project portfolio management capabilities provide an overview of all your projects in a customizable view that is located in a tab inside the Project Health dashboard. In it, you will find RAG indicators providing quick info on overall health status, margin %, burn rates, risk, and more. Additionally, each item in your scoreboard can take you to more detailed information with a simple hover and click.

Kantata integrates with Slack, Salesforce, Gmail, Workday, Quickbooks, and many other CRM, financials, and HCM tools.

Note: Kantata is a viable option for teams with over 30 people as per their pricing form.

Pricing is available upon request.

Need expert help selecting the right Project Portfolio Management Software?

We’ve joined up with the software comparison platform Crozdesk.com to assist you in finding the right software. Crozdesk’s Project Portfolio Management Software advisors can create a personalized shortlist of software solutions with unbiased recommendations to help you identify the solutions that best suit your business’s needs. Through our partnership you get free access to their bespoke software selection advice, removing both time and hassle from the research process.

It only takes a minute to submit your requirements and they will give you a quick call at no cost or commitment. Based on your needs you’ll receive customized software shortlists listing the best-fitting solutions from their team of software advisors (via phone or email). They can even connect you with your selected vendor choices along with community negotiated discounts. To get started, please complete the form below:

The Best PPM Tools Summary Chart

Here’s a summary chart with essential info: easily compare free trials and demos and pricing, along with a score showing how we rate the tool.

Tool Free Option Price
1
monday.com

Best PPM tool for workflow customization capabilities

14 days free trial

From $6/user/month Visit Website
2
Wrike

Best for live tracking of team workloads and capacity

Freemium version

14 days free trial

From $9.80/user/month Visit Website
3
Celoxis

Best PPM tool for resource management capabilities

30 days free trial

From $25/user/month Visit Website
4
Smartsheet

Best for reporting features

30 days free trial

From $7/user/month Visit Website
5
Acuity PPM

Best lightweight PPM tool

15 days free trial

From $399/month Visit Website
6
Clickup

Best for multiple portfolio customization and arrangement options.

Not available

From $5/user/month Visit Website
7
Forecast.app

Best PPM tool for AI and automation capabilities

14 days free trial

From £25/user/month Visit Website
8
Runn

Best for growing IT and software teams

Freemium version

14 days free trial

From $10/user/month Visit Website
9
Liquid Planner

Best for managing shared resources and projects across the portfolio

14 days free trial

From $15/user/month Visit Website
10
Kantata

Best portfolio dashboards for professional services teams with 30+ members.

Not available

Visit Website

PPM Tools Buyer’s Guide

What Is PPM?

In project management, PPM is project portfolio management. In PPM, a project portfolio manager takes a high-level look at the pool of projects and programs (some of which may be directly related, and some not) in a business’s portfolio.
A single project is the elementary cell of an organization. Zoom out, and we have project management, which is concerned with the execution and project delivery. Zoom out more, and we see the various projects that an organization takes on. PPM is concerned with making sure these distinct projects are undertaken in a way that complements one another in terms of resources, timelines, and overall business goals.

What Does A Project Portfolio Manager Do?

A project portfolio manager oversees, controls, and leads the tasks associated with project execution within a project portfolio. This person needs the skills of a chess master to adequately lead the team and finish projects, ideally on time and under budget. The responsibility range of this position is immense and often deals with researchers, analysts, and clients as they manage the high-level coordination of projects, following current market trends, and anticipating future ones.

What Do PPM Tools Do And How Can They Help You?

Project Portfolio Management software - ppm tools

Discover the benefits of using project portfolio management tools

Keep your project on the right track: You’re as good as the data you have. Use PPM software, like Microsoft Project, to avoid the trap of making poor decisions based on outdated or irrelevant information.
Provide executive-level business insight: Detailed project stats are simply impossible to store in your head. When managing multiple projects, you need software that is able to provide more advanced data—and executives will love you because of it! Proving to stakeholders the value and rationale behind decisions in a concise manner will help you build strong business cases for your projects.
Allocate resources: Driving better business decisions is at the top of every successful business’s priority list. PPM software shows you who’s working on what and for how long, allowing you to allocate and redistribute resources accordingly.

Fix performance issues: When managing a project portfolio, you might start to identify places where the same problems arise on a recurring basis. An effective PPM tool helps you track the project’s health indicators (such as Return on Investment) and identify any unhealthy patterns.
Assess risks: PPM software provides data and transparency into your projects for not only identifying risks but for quantifying them and exploring solutions by way of your portfolio data.

Project Portfolio Management Software Selection Criteria

In our selection of PPM tools, we narrowed down our criteria to a few key points. Let’s go through some of the most important criteria for choosing the best PPM tool fit for your team.

  • Resource management – Like resource scheduling software, PPM software with resource planning will help you make better decisions around project planning at the portfolio level. This includes features for resource allocation, capacity planning and resource utilization, managing timelines, and projections.
  • Financial administrationPPM tools should help improve your accuracy in managing financial projections, with functionality for estimating project costs and managing budgets. The best software has the option to manage and streamline payrolls, and payment invoicing in general.
  • Risk managementRisk management tools and change management features enable us to plan accordingly for risks and change requests, make risk response plans, and easily estimate the impact of What If scenarios.
  • Reporting & analytics – With robust, streamlined reports that allow you to see what works and what doesn’t, you set yourself up for future success. Modern portfolio management software must provide multiple options for generating reports. Spreadsheets are a baseline, but there are plenty of modern PPM tools with great data visualization tools for communicating data to stakeholders.
  • Integrations – Because there is no perfect PPM software out there, we need tools that sync or integrate with other project management tools, task management tools, or time tracking tools. Integrations with other business tools such as Microsoft Office, Excel, Jira, and Slack are also considered.

How To Choose The Best Portfolio Management Software For Your Projects?

Now, you have the insight into the most popular PPM tools out there. At this point, we’ll walk you through the final steps on how to choose the best PPM solution for your organization. Ask yourself these questions when choosing PPM software:

What Is Your PPM Maturity Level?

According to the Gartner model, you can determine your enterprise’s maturity by placing it into one of the 5 models (in ascending order of maturity):

  1. Reactive – this accounts for all organizations with an ad-hoc approach to projects. There is a minimal requirement for high-end PPM tools, although they’ll prove necessary for growth.
  2. Emerging Discipline – next level of management and approach to projects. It involves the use of basic PPM tools but on a more frequent and advanced level.
  3. Initial Integration – follows a more holistic approach to PPM. This is the point where a larger organization pattern is needed. Risky decisions could surface, and data tracking must be on point.
  4. Effective Integration – This is the point where automation becomes necessary, and a manager needs as much help as possible in order to execute everything on time, and under budget.
  5. Effective innovation – This is the end-game everyone strives for. PPMs are fully utilized on multiple levels, and an Enterprise Project Management Office is installed to facilitate the execution.

What Are The Main Requirements?

Take the time to carefully plan out the requirements that your team has for a PPM tool. Analyze the past work and the potential future projects, and try to make an assessment as objectively as possible. Use this article as a cheat sheet and consult as many sources as you can before deciding on your ideal PPM tool.

How Would The PPM Tool Fit Into Your Workflow?

Think about every tool you and your team use besides a PPM tool. Check for integration compatibility and were in the project lifecycle you are going to integrate the newly acquired tool first.

Ensure the tool is compatible with the project management processes and methodologies your organization uses, whether it’s agile, waterfall, or a hybrid methodology.

How Long To Set It Up?

Just keep in mind that your current projects might need to come to a short halt in order to fully integrate a new PPM tool.

Ease Of Onboarding

Your team will need some time to learn and adapt to the new set of PPM tools that are going to be presented to them. Account for every factor like: time to learn, availability of learning material, training, and support from the software provider, etc.

Think about the support for different native platforms, like Android and iOS, and fit it into your team accordingly. You should also consider whether the software solution is on-premise, cloud-based, or a SaaS.

Cost

Last, but certainly not least, these PPM tools come at a price. After you calculate the budget you have, do not forget that every PPM tool pays off multifold with the service it provides.

Other PPM tools

We’ve prepared a list of additional PPM tools that you might consider:

  1. Bubble

    Best PPM tool for project and portfolio prioritization

  2. Zoho Projects

    Run multiple projects effectively with Zoho

  3. Changepoint

    Best for analytics and decision-making

  4. Oracle Primavera

    Best PPM tool for enterprise

  5. Workfront

    Best PPM tool for service teams

  6. Accelo

    Best PPM tool for automations

  7. Perforce

    Hansoft, by Perforce, is an enterprise agile planning tool for decision-making at the project, program, and portfolio levels.

  8. WorkOtter

    Best PPM tool for capacity planning

What Do You Think?

Do you agree with our list? How would you approach this topic? There are a ton of factors in the project portfolio management equation, and new input is always welcome.

Learn more about enterprise PPM and how to do it here.

By Ben Aston

I’m Ben Aston, a digital project manager and founder of thedpm.com. I've been in the industry for more than 15 years working in the UK at London’s top digital agencies including Dare, Wunderman, Lowe and DDB. I’ve delivered everything from film to CMS', games to advertising and eCRM to eCommerce sites. I’ve been fortunate enough to work across a wide range of great clients; automotive brands including Land Rover, Volkswagen and Honda; Utility brands including BT, British Gas and Exxon, FMCG brands such as Unilever, and consumer electronics brands including Sony.

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