Project Management

Friends vs Southern Friends!

FRIENDS: Never ask for food.

SOUTHERN FRIENDS: Always bring the food.

FRIENDS: Will say ‘hello’.

SOUTHERN FRIENDS: Will give you a big hug and a kiss.

FRIENDS: Call your parents Mr. and Mrs.

SOUTHERN FRIENDS: Call your parents Mom and Dad

FRIENDS: Have never seen you cry.

SOUTHERN FRIENDS: Cry with you.

FRIENDS: Will eat at your dinner table and leave.

SOUTHERN FRIENDS: Will spend hours there, talking, laughing, and just being together.

FRIENDS: Know a few things about you.

SOUTHERN FRIENDS: Could write a book with direct quotes from you.

FRIENDS: Will leave you behind if that’s what the crowd is doing.

SOUTHERN FRIENDS: Will kick the whole crowds’ back-ends that left you.

FRIENDS: Would knock on your door.

SOUTHERN FRIENDS: Walk right in and say, ‘I’m home!’

FRIENDS: will visit you in jail

SOUTHERN FRIENDS: will spend the night in jail with you   

FRIENDS: will visit you in the hospital when you’re sick

SOUTHERN FRIENDS: will cut your grass and clean your house then come spend the night with you in the hospital and cook for you when you come home

FRIENDS: have you on speed dial

SOUTHERN FRIENDS: have your number memorized

FRIENDS: Are for a while.

SOUTHERN FRIENDS: Are for life.

FRIENDS: Might ignore this.

SOUTHERN FRIENDS: Will forward this to all their Southern Friends

Which one are you?

 

April 7, 2009 Posted by | Family, friends | 2 Comments

Have a Blessed Day!!

Never regret a day in your life

Good days give you Happiness

Bad days give you experience

Both are essential to life

Keep going…

Happiness keeps you strong

Sorrow makes you human

Failures make you humble

Success makes keeps you glowing

But only God keeps you going!

Have a great day! Your Son is shining!!

 

March 3, 2009 Posted by | Jesus, Living Your Best Life | 3 Comments

Scope Change Control

Who hasn’t been on a project where scope creep is an issue? One of my pet peeves is when people try to add functionality (or even a bug fix) and don’t realize they need to inform the Project Manager and all prior documentation has to be changed. An engineer may be able to code a fix very quickly, but if he does that has ramifications on documentation, schedule management and quality control (to name a few). When someone tries to pull this, I always draw the infamous triangle of scope, time/cost and resources. If one changes, the others will as well.

One way to formally control this is to implement a formal scope verification process where you require a change to be communicated to the stakeholders’ for formal acceptance of the completed project scope and associated deliverables. Verifying the project scope includes reviewing deliverables to ensure that each is completed satisfactorily. If the project is terminated early, the project scope verification process should establish and document the level and extent of completion.

Scope verification differs from quality control in that scope verification is primarily concerned with acceptance of the deliverables, while quality control is primarily concerned with meeting the quality requirements specified for the deliverables.

Quality control is generally performed before scope verification, but these two processes can be performed in parallel; and when a change occurs (that is accepted) all project team members need to re-examine their project documents and schedule. Any corrective changes go to the project manager and new plans and schedules are produced. Then a process of verifying the scope occurs. The following lists potential outputs from Scope verification:

  1. Accepted Deliverables: The Scope Verification process documents those completed deliverables that have been accepted. Those completed deliverables that have not been accepted are documented, along with the reasons for non-acceptance. Scope verification includes supporting documentation received from the customer or sponsor and acknowledging stakeholder acceptance of the project’s deliverables.
  2. Requested Changes; Requested changes may be generated from the Scope Verification process, and are processed for review and disposition through the Integrated Change Control processes.
  3. Recommended Corrective Actions

For a successful project, the Project Manager is in charge of scope control. Scope control is concerned with influencing the factors that create project scope changes and controlling the impact of those changes. Scope control assures all requested changes and recommended corrective actions are processed through the project Integrated Change Control process. Project scope control is also used to manage the actual changes when they occur and is integrated with the other control processes. Uncontrolled changes are often referred to as project scope creep. Change is inevitable, thereby mandating some type of change control process. The biggest thing to remember is to communicate to all team members and stake holders during this process. It is wise to institute a formal change control system.

A project scope change control system, documented in the project scope management plan, defines the procedures by which the project scope and product scope can be changed. The system includes the documentation, tracking systems, and approval levels necessary for authorizing changes. The scope change control system is integrated with any overall project management information system to control project scope. When the project is managed under a contract, the change control system also complies with all relevant contractual provisions.

Project performance measurements are used to assess the magnitude of variation. Important aspects of project scope control include determining the cause of variance relative to the scope baseline and deciding whether corrective action is required. Earned value management is very helpful here. Approved change requests affecting the project scope can require modifications to the WBS and WBS dictionary, the project scope statement, and the project scope management plan. These approved change requests can cause updates to components of the project management plan.

A formal configuration management system provides procedures for the status of the deliverables, and assures that requested changes to the project scope and product scope are thoroughly considered and documented before being processed through the Integrated Change Control process.

 

January 19, 2009 Posted by | Project Management, Schedule Management, Scope Management | 3 Comments

Building a Work Breakdown Structure

 

Building a Work Breakdown Structure

The WBS is a deliverable-oriented hierarchical decomposition of the work to be executed by the project team, to accomplish the project objectives and create the required deliverables. The WBS organizes and defines the total scope of the project. The WBS subdivides the project work into smaller, more manageable pieces of work, with each descending level of the WBS representing an increasingly detailed definition of the project work. The planned work contained within the lowest-level WBS components, which are called work packages, can be scheduled, cost estimated, monitored, and controlled.

 

On projects I’ve worked on, the project team would go into a conference room and use post it notes for each piece of work until we reached something that was a week or less. NOTE: It’s easiest to bring a roll of paper to put the post it notes on so you can roll the whole thing up to input it into soft format.

 

The WBS represents the work specified in the current approved project scope statement. Components comprising the WBS assist the stakeholders in viewing the deliverables of the project.

 

Work Breakdown Structure Templates

 

Although each project is unique, a WBS from a previous project can often be used as a template for a new project, since some projects will resemble another prior project to some extent. For example, most projects within a given organization will have the same or similar project life cycles and, therefore, have the same or similar deliverables required from each phase. Many application areas or performing organizations have standard WBS templates.

 

The Project Management Institute Practice Standard for Work Breakdown Structures provides guidance for the generation, development, and application of work breakdown structures. This publication contains industry-specific examples of WBS templates that can be tailored to specific projects in a particular application area. A portion of a WBS example, with some branches of the WBS decomposed down through the work package level.

 

Decomposition

 

Decomposition is the subdivision of project deliverables into smaller, more manageable components until the work and deliverables are defined to the work package level. The work package level is the lowest level in the WBS, and is the point at which the cost and schedule for the work can be reliably estimated. The level of detail for work packages will vary with the size and complexity of the project.

 

Decomposition may not be possible for a deliverable or subproject that will be accomplished far into the future. The project management team usually waits until the deliverable or subproject is clarified so the details of the WBS can be developed. This technique is sometimes referred to as rolling wave planning.

 

Different deliverables can have different levels of decomposition. To arrive at a manageable work effort (i.e., a work package), the work for some deliverables needs to be decomposed only to the next level, while others need more levels of decomposition. As the work is decomposed to lower levels of detail, the ability to plan, manage, and control the work is enhanced. However, excessive decomposition can lead to non-productive management effort, inefficient use of resources, and decreased efficiency in performing the work. The project team needs to seek a balance between too little and too much in the level of WBS planning detail.

5

Decomposition of the total project work generally involves the following activities:

 

·         Identifying the deliverables and related work

·         Structuring and organizing the WBS

·         Decomposing the upper WBS levels into lower level detailed components

·         Developing and assigning identification codes to the WBS components

·         Verifying that the degree of decomposition of the work is necessary and sufficient.

 

This analysis requires a degree of expert judgment to identify all the work including project management deliverables and those deliverables required by contract. Structuring and organizing the deliverables and associated project work into a WBS that can meet the control and management requirements of the project management team is an analytical technique that may be done with the use of a WBS template. The resulting structure can take a number of forms, such as:

 

·         Using the major deliverables and subprojects as the first level of decomposition.

·         Using subprojects where the subprojects may be developed by organizations outside the project team. For example, in some application areas, the project WBS can be defined and developed in multiple parts, such as a project summary WBS with multiple subprojects within the WBS that can be contracted out. The seller then develops the supporting contract work breakdown structure as part of the contracted work.

·         Using the phases of the project life cycle as the first level of decomposition, with the project deliverables inserted at the second level.

·         Using different approaches within each branch of the WBS, where test and evaluation is a phase, the air vehicle is a product, and training is a supporting service.

 

Decomposition of the upper level WBS components requires subdividing the work for each of the deliverables or subprojects into its fundamental components, where the WBS components represent verifiable products, services, or results. Each component should be clearly and completely defined and assigned to a specific performing organizational unit that accepts responsibility for the WBS component’s completion. The components are defined in terms of how the work of the project will actually be executed and controlled. For example, the status reporting component of project management could include weekly status reports, while a product to be manufactured might include several individual physical components plus the final assembly.

 

Verifying the correctness of the decomposition requires determining that the lower-level WBS components are those that are necessary and sufficient for completion of the corresponding higher-level deliverables.

 

Outputs of Creating a WBS:

 

·         Project Scope Statement (Updates): If approved change requests result from the Create WBS process, then the project scope statement is updated to include those approved changes.

·         Work Breakdown Structure: The key document generated by the Create WBS process is the actual WBS. Each WBS component, including work package and control accounts within a WBS, is generally assigned a unique identifier from a code of accounts. These identifiers provide a structure for hierarchical summation of costs, schedule, and resource information.

 

The WBS should not be confused with other kinds of breakdown structures used to present project information. Other structures used in some application areas or other Knowledge Areas include:

 

·         Organizational Breakdown Structure (OBS). Provides a hierarchically organized depiction of the project organization arranged so that the work packages can be related to the performing organizational units.

·         Bill of Materials (BOM). Presents a hierarchical tabulation of the physical assemblies, subassemblies, and components needed to fabricate a manufactured product.

·         Risk Breakdown Structure (RBS). A hierarchically organized depiction of the identified project risks arranged by risk category.

·         Resource Breakdown Structure (RBS). A hierarchically organized depiction of the resources by type to be used on the project.

 

The WBS Dictionary

 

The document generated by the Create WBS process that supports the WBS is called the WBS dictionary and is a companion document to the WBS. The detailed content of the components contained in a WBS, including work packages and control accounts, can be described in the WBS dictionary. For each WBS component, the WBS dictionary includes a code of account identifier, a statement of work, responsible organization, and a list of schedule milestones. Other information for a WBS component can include contract information, quality requirements, and technical references to facilitate performance of the work. Other information for a control account would be a charge number. Other information for a work package can include a list of associated schedule activities, resources required, and an estimate of cost. Each WBS component is cross-referenced, as appropriate, to other WBS components in the WBS dictionary.

 

The Scope Baseline

 

The approved detailed project scope statement and it’s associated

WBS and WBS dictionary are the scope baseline for the project. The next step is to estimate all of the work packages and create your baseline schedule.

 

January 11, 2009 Posted by | PMBOK, Project Management, Scope Management | , | 8 Comments

Young Life Brings Youths to Christ

I am involved with an organization called “Young Life”. In early December I was the table hostess for the fundraiser. It is one of the most awesome organizations I’ve come across. It is meant for High School students to find their way to Jesus. There are two meetings a week; one is called Campaigners (Young Life’s Bible Study) and one is a weekly meeting called Club where teenagers can ask questions they would not normally ask their parents; like “If I hate my sister, will Jesus hate me? Remember how hard being a teenager was? The kids get to do camping, hiking, and all sorts of fun things. My son went to weeklong Young Life Camp at Frontier Ranch in Colorado and he said he can remember when he truly found Christ while sitting in the quiet at night looking at the stars! What good charity to give money to.  Our kids are the future of this world.

At the dinner I hosted the kids came out one by one with a message on one side of a poster board saying something like they felt lost and alone and flipped it over and said then they found Jesus. One girl said she was contemplating suicide and the other side said she found like in Jesus. Needles to say, it was quite a tear jerker!

Here is a story written by one of the Young Life girls:

“Ever since I was young, I always thought of myself as a good person whew knew God. I grew up going to Church with my family every Sunday. Every so often, I would attend summer camps where I got “all fired up” for God, but then I would come home, back to normal life, and God would feel very distant. I always tried to know God on a personal level, but I always seemed to be lost and alone.

I always seemed consumed or worried about other things that I mistakenly thought were more important than God. I would question God’s reasoning and didn’t understand things until I started reading the Bible. The more I read, the more I wanted to know about God.

This past summer was a REAL life changer. I was attending Summer Campaigners (Young Life’s weekly Bible Study) with my friends and my brother, when I really wanted to hear about Jesus. I listened many times before, but I finally could hear the truth about God. Also, a new connection between me and my brother started to form; we never had connected on a meaningful level before. But it wasn’t until the summer when I attended Young Life camp any Frontier Ranch (the best week of my life!) when I realized that I wanted a personal relationship with my Creator. In theory, I knew a lot about believing in Jesus, but I didn’t know what it meant for me to have a personal relationship with Him until that week. God opened my heart that week; He brought a miracle to me and helped me to realize what I needed to become to be an active, faithful Christian. One night, I spent some time alone under the stars. I talked to God that night, and I believe that He spoke to my heart too. I realized that I would permanently commit my life to him.

That time under the starts allowed me to connect with Him and help me understand that God is really there! God gave me a purpose for my life – to know Him. I don’t know what that will look like specifically, day-to-day, but I know He has a plan for me out there and will help guide me to it. The passion of wanting to grow in my faith is now what drives me. God has carried me through many hard times including the big struggle of trying to know Him when He was that untouchable God in the heavens. But now I know that He loves me personally, and I’m walking hand in hand in my journey of faith with my Savior.”

Be still and know that I am God – Psalms 46:10

 

January 1, 2009 Posted by | Family, Jesus, Young Life | , , | 1 Comment

Never Forget to Tell Your Family You Love Them

These two songs bring tears to my eyes. A mother loves her kids so much and when they leave the house both pain and joy are felt for her kids. You want your kids to be independent and yet you miss them so much. I want to share these songs to you all! Always tell your kids you love them. You never know when it’s too late.

Kenny Chesney

“Don’t Blink”

I turned on the evening news
Saw an old man being interviewed
Turning a hundred and two today
Asked him what’s the secret to life
He looked up from his old pipe
Laughed and said “All I can say is.”

Don’t blink
Just like that you’re six years old and you take a nap and you
Wake up and you’re twenty-five and your high school sweetheart becomes your wife
Don’t blink
You just might miss your babies growing like mine did
Turning into moms and dads next thing you know your “better half”
Of fifty years is there in bed
And you’re praying God takes you instead
Trust me friend a hundred years goes faster than you think
So don’t blink

I was glued to my TV when it looked like he looked at me and said
“Best start putting first things first.”
Cause when your hourglass runs out of sand
You can’t flip it over and start again
Take every breathe God gives you for what it’s worth

Don’t Blink
Just like that you’re six years old and you take a nap and you
Wake up and you’re twenty-five and your high school sweetheart becomes your wife
Don’t blink
You just might miss your babies growing like mine did
Turning into moms and dads next thing you know your “better half”
Of fifty years is there in bed
And you’re praying God takes you instead
Trust me friend a hundred years goes faster than you think
So don’t blink

So I’ve been tryin’ ta slow it down
I’ve been tryin’ ta take it in
In this here today, gone tomorrow world we’re livin’ in

Don’t blink
Just like that you’re six years old and you take a nap and you
Wake up and you’re twenty-five and your high school sweetheart becomes your wife
Don’t blink
You just might miss your babies growing like mine did
Turning into moms and dads next thing you know your “better half”
Of fifty years is there in bed
And you’re praying God takes you instead
Trust me friend a hundred years goes faster than you think
So Don’t blink

Naw, don’t blink
Life Goes Faster Than You Think

 

Alan Jackson

“Remember When”

Remember when I was young and so were you
and time stood still and love was all we knew
You were the first, so was I
We made love and then you cried
Remember when

Remember when we vowed the vows
and walked the walk
Gave our hearts, made the start, it was hard
We lived and learned, life threw curves
There was joy, there was hurt
Remember when

Remember when old ones died and new were born
And life was changed, disassembled, rearranged
We came together, fell apart
And broke each other’s hearts
Remember when

Remember when the sound of little feet
was the music
We danced to week to week
Brought back the love, we found trust
Vowed we’d never give it up
Remember when

Remember when thirty seemed so old
Now lookn’ back it’s just a steppin’ stone
To where we are,
Where we’ve been
Said we’d do it all again
Remember when
Remember when we said when we turned gray
When the children grow up and move away
We won’t be sad, we’ll be glad
For all the life we’ve had
And we’ll remember when

 

December 31, 2008 Posted by | Family, friends | , , | Leave a comment

Good Friends are like Good Wine. They only improve with age!

I had always dreamed of walking down the aisle at graduation with my Dad in his Harvard robes. When I was a senior in college, He was coming back from giving a paper and had a heart attack on the airplane. Even though they emergency landed the plane in Atlanta, he died. That night I had double dated with my sister to see a “Yes” concert, but went home earlier than she did since I had an 8:00 am Calculus class.

I was a senior in college when my Mom called me up (after a very late night at a YES concert) and asked me to come over since my Dad was “sick”. I told her I needed to sleep and would be there after my class in the morning. My parents were divorced by then, so I thought it was a bit weird, but went back to sleep. Then she called back and told me I was dead. I rushed to her house at 3 in the morning n tears. My Dad was my best friend. My Mom wanted me to find my sister but I had no idea where she was and there were no cell phones back then. She gave me a stiff drink (which was the last thing I needed – but I took it anyway). We waited for my sister Barby to show up and when she did, we both broke down in tears again. My Mom asked me to go to my Dad’s apartment to look for a will (he was only 45) and she didn’t feel comfortable doing it. I was a basket case. Luckily my roommate was there to drive me.

Seeing my Dad’s most personal things was horrible to me. I found what I could and brought it back to my Mom.

I stayed there, but went to school because at the beginning of the semester, my professor had said there would be no exceptions to missing exams. I must have looked a mess, because one of my friends came up as I was waiting and said”what happened to you, did someone die or something”? When he heard my story, he walked into the classroom and explained my situation to the professor and she was so nice, and told me of course I could make it up. Maybe it helped that my Dad was the Dean of the Graduate School – but he led me out of school to the next door college bar. Now this was about 8:30 am. My best friend said “Let’s have a few beers and celebrate his life”. We did and we laughed and cried at the same time. One old drunk came over and asked us what was going on. When we told him, he cried too! We all started laughing which sounds weird, but it was what I needed most.

It was then that I found out who your real friends are. Some that I thought were my friends looked the other way when I was coming. Some sat with me and let me talk, cry and cried with me. It was like my Dad’s death was contagious and some of my so called friends didn’t want to catch the “germ”.  That’s when I learned the value of true friends. They are with you through the good and bad, the ugly, the horrible and the tragedy. Some of those people I can call today (and I’m 53) and it’s like we never stopped talking.

Then the next shoe hit the floor. My Mom wanted me to decide where my Dad should be buried! His Dad was on vacation, but I refused to make any decisions until I could talk to my Grandfather. No parent should survive their children. I had never had death touch me, and I couldn’t handle it. I was floored that my Mom couldn’t see that.

We ended up sending the police after my grandfather. Thank God he took care of everything. We all flew up to Massachusetts were my first Grandmother was buried. My Dad was cremated and buried next to her. My Grandfather sent me the pictures he developed that my Dad had taken on that trip; they were of the same place where he was buried. It was fall, so I’m sure he was taking pictures of the changing leaves – but is was still creepy. My sister and I didn’t have much money, but we went to a florist and bought roses to lie on his grave.

When we got home, the money he had was to be left to any minor children (of which I was not) but there was an insurance policy with me as the beneficiary. I felt said because he had always wanted a boat. I think you should always make sure you experience your dreams.

My Mom said she and Barby would take me to court to get that money – so I gave it to them. Not worth fighting for. I almost quit college at the suggestion of my Mom, but my Dad’s professor friends rallied around me and got me through it (thank goodness for those wonderful men).

I gave up the idea of graduate school and got a job in the computer industry where I have been for 30 years. My Mom and Scott moved up to New York before I graduated and no one I was related to came to the ceremony. Not even my sister.

My husband and I have an iron clad will so hopefully none of this business will happen. I grew up very fast during those years and still hear my Dad in my prayers. I made peace with my Mom before she died (at 72) and I am very glad I did. Family is what is most important and should never be taken for granted. Nor should goof friends – they are worth gold and they endure much longer than teenage crushes or small arguments. Nurture them with love and they will serve you for your whole life.

You never know when your time will be up so always tell your loved ones how much you love and appreciate them. Never go to bed with any anger in your heart. I have a sign over our bed that says “Never forget to kiss me Goodnight” so my husband and I remember how important it is. Forgive no matter what and live so you have no regrets on your deathbed. Older people will tell you that the only thing they worry about are regrets from a missed time to tell someone they loved them or a missed time to spend more time with their kids. Don’t let that happen to you. Life goes by in a blink! Live, Laugh and Love everyone! You never know when the last day will come – so no regrets!

December 27, 2008 Posted by | Family, friends | , , , , | Leave a comment

Using Earned Value to Predict Your Project’s Success

This Post examines how the data points of Planned Value (PV), Earned Value (EV), and Actual Cost (AC) can be used to analyze the current status of a project and forecast its likely future. EVM looks at project performance for the current period and at cumulative performance to date. EVM is described and illustrated here in terms of cumulative data, using the Project data.

This post introduces a fourth data point, Budget at Completion (BAC), which is the final data point on the performance measurement baseline (PMB). Budget at Completion represents the total Planned Value for the project. For Project EZ, the BAC is 150.

This is a goof rule of thumb:

• If your SV >0 and your SPI > 1.0, you are ahead of schedule and under budget. If your SV = 0 and your SPI > 1.0, you are on budget and ahead of schedule. If your SV < 0 and your SPI 0 and your SPI > 1.0, you are ahead of schedule and under budget. If your SV = 0 and your SPI > 1.0, you are on budget and ahead of schedule. If your SV < 0 and your SPI < 1.0 you are behind in budget and schedule.
• Indices: Schedule Performance Index (SPI); Cost Performance Index (CPI); and To-Complete Performance Index (TCPI)
• Forecasts: Time Estimate at Completion (EACt); Estimate at Completion (EAC); and Estimate to Complete (ETC)

These variances, indices, and forecasts can be used to answer the key project management questions. It lets us show the relationship between those project management questions and the EVM performance measures.

Schedule Variance (Are we ahead or behind schedule?)
The Schedule Variance (SV) determines whether a project is ahead of or behind schedule. It is calculated by subtracting the Planned Value (PV) from the Earned Value (EV). A positive value indicates a favorable condition and a negative value indicates an unfavorable condition.

The Schedule Variance can be expressed as a percentage by dividing the Schedule Variance (SV) by the Planned Value (PV). In other words, the project is 33 percent behind schedule, meaning that 33 percent of the planned work has not been accomplished.

Schedule Performance Index (How efficiently are we using time?)
The Schedule Performance Index (SPI) indicates how efficiently the project team is using its time. SPI is calculated by dividing the Earned Value (EV) by the Planned Value (PV). The Schedule Performance Index indicates that—on average—for each 8-hour day worked on the project, only 5 hours and 20 minutes worth of the planned work is being performed; that is, work is being accomplished at 67 percent efficiency. This is a very useful statistic to use in resource allocation.

Time Estimate at Completion (When are we likely to finish work?)

Using the Schedule Performance Index (SPI) and the average Planned Value (PV) per unit of time, the project team can generate a rough estimate of when the project will be completed, if current trends continue, compared to when it was originally supposed to be completed.

The originally estimated completion time for the project was 12 months, so the project manager now knows that if work continues at the current rate the project will take six months longer than originally planned. It is important to note that this method generates a fairly rough estimate and must always be compared with the status reflected by a time-based schedule method such as critical path method. It is possible that an earned value analysis could show no schedule variance and yet the project is still behind schedule; for example, when tasks that are planned to be completed in the future are performed ahead of tasks on the critical path.

One trick I always use is to have the engineers update their time on the project daily. This is quite normal. But I also have them update the remaining time that task will take. If the original estimate was 40 hours, and the engineer spent 20 hours on it, that does not mean he is 50% done. Software is very hard to predict and new things are learned as one gets deeper in the project. So if the culture allows the engineers to update their remaining work every day, I can run Project scenarios to see if the critical path has changed. I can also have a discussion with the engineer to see if we can work smarter to pull in the estimate. Most of the time, we don’t spend enough time estimating a project and just jump in and write code. This mode usually bites you in the end.

Next I will show an example I found using the techniques I’ve written about in this post.

earned-value1

December 27, 2008 Posted by | earned value | , , , , , | 8 Comments

Developing a Project Scope Document

 

 

                        Developing a Project Scope Statement

 

The project scope statement is the definition of the project—what needs to be accomplished. The Develop Preliminary Project Scope Statement process addresses and documents the characteristics and boundaries of the project and its associated products and services, as well as the methods of acceptance and scope control. A project scope statement includes:

 

·         Project and product objectives

·         Product or service requirements and characteristics

·         Product acceptance criteria

·         Project boundaries

·         Project requirements and deliverables

·         Project constraints

·         Project assumptions

·         Initial project organization

·         Initial defined risks

·         Schedule milestones

·         Initial WBS

·         Order of magnitude cost estimate

·         Project configuration management requirements

·         Approval requirements

 

The preliminary project scope statement is developed from information provided by the initiator or sponsor. The project management team in the Scope Definition process further refines the preliminary project scope statement into the project scope statement. The project scope statement content will vary depending upon the application area and complexity of the project and can include some or all of the components identified above. During subsequent phases of multi-phase projects, the Develop Preliminary Project Scope Statement process validates and refines, if required, the project scope defined for that phase.

 

Project Scope Development Tools and Techniques

1 – Project Management Methodology

The project management methodology defines a process that aids a project  management team in developing and controlling changes to the preliminary project scope statement.

 

2 – Project Management Information System

The project management information system, an automated system, is used by the project management team to support generation of a preliminary project scope statement, facilitate feedback as the document is refined, control changes to the project scope statement, and release the approved document.

 

3 – Expert Judgment

Expert judgment is applied to any technical and management details to be included in the preliminary project scope statement.

         

Develop Project Plan

 

The Develop Project Management Plan process includes the actions necessary to define, integrate, and coordinate all subsidiary plans into a project management plan. The project management plan content will vary depending upon the application area and complexity of the project. This process results in a project management plan that is updated and revised through the Integrated Change Control process. The project management plan defines how the project is executed, monitored and controlled, and closed. The project management plan documents the collection of outputs of the planning processes of the Planning Process Group and includes:

 

·         The project management processes selected by the project management team

·         The level of implementation of each selected process

·         The descriptions of the tools and techniques to be used for accomplishing those processes

·         How the selected processes will be used to manage the specific project, including the dependencies and interactions among those processes, and the essential inputs and outputs

·         How work will be executed to accomplish the project objectives

·         How changes will be monitored and controlled

·         How configuration management will be performed

·         How integrity of the performance measurement baselines will be maintained and used

·         The need and techniques for communication among stakeholders

·         The selected project life cycle and, for multi-phase projects, the associated project phases

·         Key management reviews for content, extent, and timing to facilitate addressing open issues and pending decisions.

 

The project management plan can be either summary level or detailed, and can be composed of one or more subsidiary plans and other components. Each of the subsidiary plans and components is detailed to the extent required by the specific project. These subsidiary plans include, but are not limited to:

 

·         Project scope management plan

·         Schedule management plan

·         Cost management plan

·         Quality management plan

·         Process improvement plan

·         Staffing management plan

·         Communication management plan

·         Risk management plan

·         Procurement management plan

 

These other components include, but are not limited to:

 

·         Milestone list

·         Resource calendar

·         Schedule baseline

·         Cost baseline

·         Quality baseline

·         Risk register

 

          Project Plan Tools and Techniques

Project Management Methodology

The project management methodology defines a process, which aids a project management team in developing and controlling changes to the project management plan.

 

Project Management Information System

The project management information system, an automated system, is used by the project management team to support generation of the project management plan, facilitate feedback as the document is developed, control changes to the project management plan, and release the approved document.

 

·         Configuration Management System The configuration management system is a subsystem of the overall project management information system. The system includes the process for submitting proposed changes, tracking systems for reviewing and approving proposed changes, defining approval levels for authorizing changes, and providing a method to validate approved changes. In most application areas, the configuration management system includes the change control system. The configuration management system is also a collection of formal documented procedures used to apply technical and administrative direction and surveillance to:

o   Identify and document the functional and physical characteristics of a product or component

o   Control any changes to such characteristics

o   Record and report each change and its implementation status

o   Support the audit of the products or components to verify conformance to requirements.

 

·         Change Control System The change control system is a collection of formal documented procedures that define how project deliverables and documentation are controlled, changed, and approved. The change control system is a subsystem of the configuration management system. For example, for information technology systems, a change control system can include the specifications (scripts, source code, data definition language, etc.) for each software component.

 

·         Expert Judgment Expert judgment is applied to develop technical and management details to be included in the project management plan.

 

 

December 23, 2008 Posted by | PMP, Scope Management | 1 Comment

The True Meaning of Christmas

When I was a teenager, I confused true friendship with casual friends (mostly boys). The thing is the casual friends come and go and true friends never leave. This especially became apparent to me when as a senior in college my Father (who was a professor at the University I went to) had a heart attack on an airplane on the way home from giving a paper. I was completely astounded at how many of my “true” friends ignored me as if death was somehow catching. They avoided me like the plague. My true friends stuck with me through the crying, the remembering, the shock and the drunken nights at the local pub. I had gone to school the night after my Dad died, even though I was up all night, because my teacher had said no excuses could be made to make up a test. One very good friend walked in with me and explained the situation and she excused me. My Dad was my best friend, so I took it very hard. I felt as though God had taken him away when he was finally getting over the divorce with my mother and starting to live the life he deserved. It took me a good 20 years before I sought out God again (and thank God I did, He is a very big part of my life now).
During the Christmas season I get a little sentimental. We have had some great times together with many great friends. Good friends are very hard to come by and you should never let them go. I firmly believe (by my own experience) that people are sent by God to be with us when we need them most. I believe they may be angels (or at least God’s messengers). I have some that I may not hear from for years, but when the need comes and I call them or they call me it’s like we never stopped talking. I hope you find someone like there to be one of those people who you can count on to always be there.

I believe this is one of the reasons God put us on earth – to cheer and hold up others who are in excruciating pain, or even the simple pains of life on this earth because we have all felt the same way at times and can relate. I tried to explain to my son that even though he was grateful that God gave His son to save him, he would never understand the gravity of that sacrifice. As a parent you realize that putting your child in danger that you can’t save them from must be the greatest gift you could give someone (and also the hardest thing you could ever do). Don’t forget that the simplest thing you can do for someone may be exactly what they need. You may be their angel doing God’s work!

Please don’t forget your friendships and know that people love you, even if you don’t see each other as much as you’d like to. Take the time to call or send a note. Casual friends come and go but true friends never leave your heart. That’s something teenagers need to learn through experience. I was taught very early that if a boyfriend wanted me to give up one of my girlfriends, he was very mistaken about my feelings towards life. I think losing my Dad at an early age helped me to realize that.

So, let’s all try to get together with the ones we love more often and while we are not together please remember you are always in their hearts and they are in yours. Don’t wait until it’s too late to express your love. Life is very short (even though it seems like it goes on forever!).

No one cares about what they’ve accomplished in life when they are dying; they care about who they loved and who loved them back. Any act of kindness you show to someone is an act of kindness you show our Lord Jesus.

Merry Christmas to you all and God bless you, your family and your friends!

Love always, your angel Donna

December 22, 2008 Posted by | Living Your Best Life | , , , | Leave a comment