These discretionary business investments are based upon their unique standing in the overall portfolio. Each new opportunity is evaluated as to its potential net present value and its associated probability of success.
Program Managers can gain insight into where and how their program fits with the overall portfolio of programs by referencing an organization's portfolio map. Senior management decisions concerning the programs (such as budget and resource allocation) will vary depending upon where a program sits within the portfolio in accordance with its projected return vs. risk. The portfolio map helps put these decisions in context of the overall business strategy for program managers.
Portfolio maps also provide program managers power to influence senior manager's decisions if their program sits in a positive position within the portfolio, such as the "Pearls" quadrant in figure above, where programs are providing high financial value at relatively low risk of failure.