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Difference between Project Management and Portfolio Management

Last Updated : 23 Mar, 2023
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1. Project Management : 

Project Management, as name suggests, is a management skill that involves managing single project from starting to end and makes sure it gets completed successfully on given period of time. 

Advantages of Project Management:

  • Helps to ensure that projects are delivered on time, within budget, and to the required quality standards.
  • Provides a framework for managing risks, issues, and changes that may arise during the project lifecycle.
  • Facilitates effective communication and collaboration among team members and stakeholders.

Disadvantages of Project Management:

  • May result in a lack of flexibility and adaptability if the project plan is too rigid.
  • May result in a focus on short-term goals at the expense of long-term strategic objectives.
  • May be resource-intensive, especially for large and complex projects.

2. Portfolio Management : 

Portfolio Management, as name suggests, is a management skill that involves managing all projects within organization so that they can maximize earnings and increase return of investments. 

Advantages of Portfolio Management:

  • Provides a systematic approach to selecting and prioritizing projects based on their alignment with the organization’s strategic objectives.
  • Enables the organization to optimize its resource allocation and maximize the value of its project investments.
  • Provides a framework for monitoring and evaluating the performance of the organization’s project portfolio.

Disadvantages of Portfolio Management:

  • May be difficult to implement and manage, especially in large organizations with many projects.
  • May result in conflicts between project managers who are competing for limited resources.
  • May require significant changes in organizational culture and processes to be successful.

Similarities between Project Management and Portfolio Management:

  • Both involve planning, organizing, and controlling resources to achieve specific objectives.
  • Both require effective communication, coordination, and collaboration among team members and stakeholders.
  • Both are concerned with delivering value to customers or clients.

Difference between Project Management and Portfolio Management :

Project Management Portfolio Management
It mainly focuses on management of particular project. It mainly focuses on all projects within organization.
It simply manages individual projects and makes sure that it gets completed on given period of time within budget also. It simply manages investments of individuals so that they can increase their earnings within given period of time.
This management generally focuses various tasks within particular project to achieve desired result or product. This management generally focuses on high-level view of any activity or task or project of any organization.
It is a temporary process but unique. It is a ongoing process that has to performed on daily basis.
It does not make a strategic plans and prioritize projects. It makes strategic plans, prioritize projects, selects important projects that will benefit organization.
It makes unnecessary use of resources for each project that are not even important. It decreases unnecessary use of resources by prioritizing project that are important.
This management direct a individual project successfully. This management is about selecting and implementing right projects for organization to fulfill long-term objectives.
Its main goal is to complete single project and provide service. Its main goal is to look at all projects and in turn improves return of investment as well as reduction of costs.
This management is basically used for small scale projects and more detailed one. This management is basically used for not only large scale projects but also for more diffused one.


Project management and portfolio management are both important concepts in business management. While they share some similarities, they differ in their focus, scope, and management approach. Understanding the differences between these two concepts is critical to effectively managing individual projects or programs, as well as managing a collection of projects or programs to achieve strategic goals and objectives.

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