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Real-World Project Management. Chapter 13. Characteristics of Project Management. Unique one-time focus Difficulties arise from originality Subject to uncertainties Unexplained or unplanned events often arise, affecting resources, objectives and timelines Multiple stakeholders

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Real-World Project Management


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characteristics of project management
Characteristics of Project Management
  • Unique one-time focus
    • Difficulties arise from originality
  • Subject to uncertainties
    • Unexplained or unplanned events often arise, affecting resources, objectives and timelines
  • Multiple stakeholders
    • Different interests in both the processes and outcomes of the project
  • No clear authority
    • Project chain of command may conflict with the formal structures of the participating organizational units

Chapter 13 - Real World Project Management

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measuring project success
Measuring Project Success
  • Stakeholders determine the degree of success for each project undertaken
    • For example, success may be measured by savings in operating costs or revenue generated
    • Complications arise when different groups of stakeholders have different interests, values and objectives
    • Stakeholders must be identified, prioritized and their measures of success well understood
      • Process must be developed to achieve the desired results

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qualitative methods for achieving success
Qualitative Methods for Achieving Success
  • The path to success lies in conservative planning
    • Establishes the opportunity to exceed expectations
    • Stakeholder expectations must be managed
      • Expectations must be controlled and managed over time
  • Project managers must possess both technical and soft skills
  • Work objectives must be clearly defined in order to decrease the possibility of scope creep

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qualitative tools and techniques for project management

Data Analysis

System and Network Testing

System Development Project

Design

Development

Testing and

Implementation

Analysis

Installation and Training

Reports Design

Database Design

Code Reports

Code Data Entry

Code Database

Process Analysis

Qualitative Tools and Techniques for Project Management
  • Network diagramming is one of the most versatile techniques for planning
    • Graphic illustration of the activities in a project and their relationship
      • Provides a timeline, critical path, activities on the critical path

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choosing a project network diagramming technique

B

A

C

3

B

A

1

2

C

4

Choosing a Project Network Diagramming Technique
  • To commonly accepted approaches are Activity on Node (AON) and Activity on Arrow (AOA)

Using activity on node (AON), nodes represent activities and arrows show precedence.

Using activity on arrow (AOA), arrows are activities and nodes are “events.” Precedence is captured in event relationships.

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diagramming the systems development project
Diagramming the Systems Development Project

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developing a project schedule
Developing a Project Schedule
  • A project network can be used to develop a project schedule or plan
  • The duration of a project is equal to the longest path on the project network
    • This is the critical path
    • A project may contain more than one critical path
  • Activity slack is the amount of time a project can be delayed before it becomes critical

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computing earliest start and earliest finish times
Computing Earliest Start and Earliest Finish Times

Early Finish

Early Start

Activity Duration

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computing late start and late finish times

Start

E

F

C

I

9

17

13

11

4

8

9

16

9

4

10

16

17

13

9

13

4

5

3

1

A

4

0

0

4

4

H

16

13

13

16

3

Finish

B

3

0

1

4

3

D

8

3

4

9

5

G

12

8

9

13

4

Computing Late Start and Late Finish Times

Late Start

Late Finish

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probabilistic project management
Probabilistic Project Management
  • Treat activities as if they are common variables and assign probabilities to activity times to reflect the inherent uncertainties
    • Calculate an optimistic time (a),a most likely time (m) and a pessimistic time (b)
    • Probabilities for activity times are taken from the beta distribution
    • The formula for te is a weighted average of the three time estimates in which the most likely time (m) is weighted four times that of either the optimistic or pessimistic times

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analyzing probabilities
Analyzing Probabilities
  • Assume that the duration of all activities are independent from each other
  • Activity times are random variables
  • Let T = due date for the project, TE = expected completion time for path
  • T, TE and 2 can be used to calculate a z-score
    • The value of z is the number of standard deviations that the project due date is from the expected completion time

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making time cost and performance trade offs
Making Time, Cost and Performance Trade-Offs
  • Project completion dates are generated in isolation of management expectations and may demonstrate no relationship to their desires
  • To meet stakeholder expectations, you may:
    • Add resources
    • Reduce performance specifications
    • Change management expectations
    • Combine the previous alternatives

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making time cost trade offs
Making Time-Cost Trade-Offs
  • Adding resources may add complexity and increase project length
  • Accurate estimates regarding the times and costs involved are necessary
    • Normal time (NT) = Expected activity duration without crashing
    • Normal cost (NC) = Expected activity costs without crashing
    • Crash time (CT) = Expected activity duration with crashing
    • Crash cost (CC) = Expected activity cost with crashing

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making time cost trade offs1
Making Time-Cost Trade-Offs
  • Costs are linear, it costs proportionally the same to reduce an activity by one day as it does two days
  • Per period crashing cost is referred to as “bang for the buck”
    • Only crash activities that are on the critical path
    • Crashing an activity on the critical path may not reduce the project duration
    • The process of crashing may cause the set of critical paths to change
  • The crashing technique for managing projects reduces the duration by making a trade-off between time and money

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reducing performance specifications and other alternatives
Reducing Performance Specifications and Other Alternatives
  • Project duration can be reduced by eliminating certain project deliverables
    • Allows managers to reallocate resources originally intended for other activities into new activities that could reduce the project duration without increasing costs
  • Elimination of activities depends on criticality of deliverable
  • The project due date may be negotiable
  • Individual alternatives are not mutually exclusive

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