Application Portfolio Assessment

Application Portfolio Assessment is usually the first step on your journey with LeanIX. It helps you build a repository of your applications and drive faster technical and functional assessments, e.g., when migrating applications to the cloud, integrating IT systems and acquiring or retiring technologies.

Below, we will explain the typical business drivers for application portfolio assessment and how to use LeanIX to realize this use case. You will learn step by step:

  • Why application portfolio assessment is a primary use case for most organizations, and which typical questions can you answer with it
  • What application portfolio assessment is
  • How you can get started to build your LeanIX repository and run the first assessments of your application portfolio with LeanIX

Why Application Portfolio Assessment

No matter if your organization's priority is to save costs, reduce risks, do a cloud migration, or do another transformation. Getting a 360° overview of the IT landscape is the initial step to realizing any use case. Getting an overview of the portfolio is not a trivial task. It is an increasing challenge given the expansion of IT usage in companies, the constant changes organizations undergo (e.g., transformation, new customer needs), an increase of SaaS usage, and, more recently, of microservices and software companies, building themselves.

IT has become a significant cost factor and an aspect of innovation and competitiveness. Knowing the state of all IT assets they have is a crucial responsibility and concern for CIOs and their teams. Application portfolio assessment helps EAs to understand their IT landscape and answer foundational questions such as:

  • How many and which applications do we have in our organization?
  • How complex is our landscape?
  • What are the main cost drivers of the IT landscape?
  • Which part of the business does each application support, and how well?
  • How critical is each application for the business?
  • Which applications are necessary to provide critical capabilities to the business?
  • How to better align investments in Applications with business priorities?
  • Which applications don't meet business requirements or are close to the end of life and should be eliminated?
  • Which applications pose a risk to the business?
  • What is the portion of on-premise and purchased (SaaS) applications?
  • Where are our applications hosted?

WHAT is Application Portfolio Assessment?


Application portfolio assessment is a systematic review and documentation of an organization's applications, evaluating their interdependencies, usage, and contribution to the business. This process aims to identify valuable and vulnerable applications, create transparency, and provide a comprehensive understanding of the organization's application portfolio thereby enabling informed decision-making and efficient resource allocation. Furthermore, an application portfolio assessment is typically the first step towards more advanced use cases, such as Application Rationalization. The following activities are typically conducted during an application portfolio assessment initiative:

  • Documenting past, present, and future applications deployed or planned to be inside an organization
  • Organizing Applications according to business capabilities
  • Arranging IT components into technology stacks
  • Grading the technical and functional value of applications
  • Support businesses with reliable information on IT costs and investments
  • Identify risks and vulnerabilities stemming from end-of-life application service lifecycles

Benefits of application portfolio assessment 

Running an application portfolio assessment can bring the following benefits to your IT function and business:

  • Save 75% of time on manually collecting data from business stakeholders
  • Save 85% of time on monthly reporting and improve enterprise architecture productivity by 50%
  • Reveal business-led IT (“shadow IT”)
  • Become proactive in managing technical debt in 3 months
  • Complete 20% more IT transformation projects on time and within budget

HOW: Application Portfolio Assessment step-by-step

The below documentation guides you through the Application Portfolio Assessment, a standard LeanIX approach which typically takes place during the first 4-10 weeks of your journey with LeanIX Enterprise Architecture.

To realize this use case, you need the following LeanIX Enterprise Architecture products:

LeanIX Application Portfolio Management - LeanIX Application Portfolio Management helps you realize an application portfolio assessment use case. With Application Portfolio Management, you can access all LeanIX standard features, such as the Dashboard, Inventory, Reports and Diagrams, etc.

LeanIX Technology Risk and Compliance - LeanIX Technology Risk and Compliance needs to be licensed separately. It is an optional product for this use case through which lifecycle data can be added to IT Component & Applications in scope

Step-by-step guide