Read by Phil, the project management director with

Read Case Study: Project Overrun PMCS, pg. 321 and answer the following questions to be handed in, 2-3 pages, double-spaced; please include your name, title of assignment, date.

·        Write a brief synopsis.

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The given case study is best example of misrepresenting facts by the customers to the company and no proper communication between the top management and the internal departments of the company. The green project was supposed to be completed three months before, but there was overrun observed in the production time by 60% which led to huge losses in terms of cost. A meeting was setup by Phil, the project management director with both the functional manager and the project manager to discuss about the issues being encountered and prevent future mistakes and slags in this project. The project manager told Phil that there was no fixed delivery schedule set by green during signing of initial contract because the customers were not aware when the new production plan would get ready. Based on the daily schedule only 3000 units per month were produced and the new production plant was coming up 2 months ahead of decided schedule, so the customers insisted to speed up the production work. Due to this demand from the customers, the company started overtime production which made the production employees dissatisfied. As no proper OSHA and EPA guidelines were provided to the Green company until the testing phases of new plant, so this led to the re-manufacturing of 6000 units which were not in accordance with the given specifications and this took another 6 months of time to complete. For this problem, the project manager was not bound to pay anything, but the company had to incur huge penalties for it. So, the employees’ paychecks for working overtime were cancelled, leading to dissatisfaction of functional employees. Hence, this was basically the mistake of the company which did not take into consideration the rules and guidelines set by OSHA and EPA, and the company accepted to the delivery date which was not mentioned in the contract, and no proper documentation was done. In conclusion, the company head should had read the terms and conditions properly, and then proceeded with the project.


·        Whose responsibility is it to review the terms and conditions of the contract, as well as the statement of work?

It is Project manager’s responsibility to review the terms and conditions of the contract, as well as the statement of work.


·        How important are OSHA and EPA requirements?

All established companies and Organizations must follow the guidelines and requirements set by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). These rules and guidelines are established because to create better working environment and assure safety for all the employees working at a company. To be specific, EPA looks after the health and environment aspects within a company.  


·        Are there detrimental effects to working people on overtime?

Working overtime has both physical and mental effects on the employees. Working overtime for a longer duration can result in fatigue and serious health issues. Excess fatigue at workplace can decrease the productivity and quality of work performed by the employee. So, working overtime sometimes is fine, but if done in excess, can lead to above mentioned issues which are not good for the company’s growth.


Read “Project Management Enables Consulting Consistency”, George Lowden, PM Network, Oct 2002, p 16


·        Write a brief synopsis, highlighting the major points.

The given article talks about how consulting industry has made project management its essential part.

The author of this article highlights the importance, expertise, and discusses about the important phases in project management which he has experienced in his previous work experience with consulting industry. It’s clearly evident that consulting industry has its focus on managing projects by clearly defining the problem, analyzing the problem, finding logical alternatives, and taking intellectual decisions. For a project manager to be powerful, he must have expertise in field of planning, leadership, budget, and communication.

The major steps are: –

1.     Winning the project: – The new projects should be grabbed by the project manager with the help of his expert knowledge and abilities. The project manager must consult his customers by better understanding of their demands and cater to their needs by completing the project successfully.

2.     Managing the project: – It is the sole responsibility of the project manager and his team to manage the project in great manner. All the required project management phases need to be followed and project should be completed on time.

3.     Monitoring the project: – Keeping an eye on the project progress and tracking it, is the important part of project monitoring. The project must proceed further without any slags and glitches.  All the required actions must be taken to prevent any major issues and problems which occur during the project.


Read “Should You Be Given A Project End Date?”, Neal Whitten, PM Network, Feb 2003, p 22

·        Write a brief synopsis, highlighting the major points.

The article speaks about whether the projects should have an end date or not. So, this situation is same as two sides of a coin, but majorly considering the good part. Usually targets and deadlines are set in each and every company to make their employees work efficiently and complete undertaken projects on schedule. This practice of setting deadlines keeps the employees on their toes and makes them think creatively.

There will be situations where deadlines are not met and project does not complete on time, but still the employees will put forth their best work in doing the job. It is a good idea to setup deadlines for a project, but they should be realistic. All the aspects related to project deadlines are project manager’s responsibilities. Hence, to attain the deliverables, there is a need for right attitude and correct guidance.


Read “The Power of the Program”, Greg Seigle, PM Network, Feb 2004, pp 29-34

·        Write a brief synopsis, highlighting the major points.

The above article describes about how every individual is directly or indirectly related to project management techniques, and how they are performing the project manager’s role in their respective field of interest. The examples considered here are from the various service fields and they have no common thing amongst them. But, the way pursuing their work is much similar to program management. The steps followed to successfully run the project are, continued learning, delivering the promises made, finding solution to the problems, and analyzing the product capabilities. However, it’s not always true that all business strategies and plans work for every individual or company. Hence, keeping good communication with customers, understanding their needs thoroughly, continuously learning from their previous mistakes, and delivering the work as promised are some of the good ethics of a successful project manager and a successful company.



Please answer the following questions to be handed in.  3- 4 pages, double-spaced; please include your name, title of assignment, date.

Read “A Measure of Success”, Malcolm Wheatley, PM Network, Jun 2004, pp 39-44

·        Write a brief synopsis, highlighting the major points.

The above article talks about the merits and de-merits of performance based budgeting (PBB). PBB has been utilized successfully in the public sector in order to decrease project costs and managing portfolios of the project. The expected project benefits are defined with stringent rules, no matter how the benefits get delivered.

The article contains examples where PBB method was used, they are, New Zealand’s public finance act of 1989, Labor party initiative in Great Britain, and public school system of Florida. In the case of New Zealand, there came a drastic change in country’s economy after application of PBB. In the case of Florida, there were mixed reviews regarding PBB, the basic skillset improved, test scores increased ending its importance and decreased the focus on subjects, and reduced new opportunities.

PBB works well when outcomes are measured, but not so well when outcomes are not measured. In the latter case, we need to improve the data collection methods and flaws need to be eliminated. Hence, we can conclude that, PBB had mixed reviews when implemented in public sector, but gave out impressive outcomes when implemented in private sector. So, there is a dilemma about PBB’s long term results.


Read “Analysis: You Will Do It – Completely and Correctly!!”, Lois Zells, PMI ISSIG Review, 2nd qtr 2000, Vol 10 #2, p 1-3

·        Write a brief synopsis, highlighting the major points.

The above article speaks about the importance testing has in project development and process analysis. Often we see that projects do not complete on time and we criticize poor planning as its reason. Testing plays a vital role in making the project successful.  Testing phase takes 40% to 70% of time of the overall project. Once this testing is completed, its execution takes another 5% of overall time. In a testing phase, we need to define all the inputs, expected results, and create test data to compare with actual test results.

Previously, testing phase did not have that much of importance as it has now. Because of this reason projects failed in the past and designing phase was given 50% to 70% of overall time. But, now the companies have understood the importance of testing phase and have started emphasizing more during the project.

The myth needs to be removed from the minds of all the project managers that errors can only be seen after the final testing is done. But, that’s not the reality, errors occur even during initial testing phase as well. So, it’s the organizations’ responsibility to question these irrational thoughts and myths, and efforts should be made to analysis the issues at the initial stages as well.  


Read “Share the Vision”, Sarah, Fister Gale, PM Network, Dec 2007, p 30-38

·        Write a brief synopsis, highlighting the major points.

In this article, we learn about the importance of corporate strategies and project objectives in a project to a project manager. Both strategic goals and project goals of a company should be on the same path. The prime focus of project manager should be on deadlines, cost cutting, and deliverables. But, the main goals of the company should not be forgotten.

Melvar, a construction business company, mainly focusses on green building construction, which is its key strategy. Both the business goals and strategic goals of this company go hand-in-hand, and its employees understand these goals thoroughly.

Involving project managers in every project meeting and discussing their views can have strong impact on their mindsets, and in turn helps in developing a positive approach. Considering the example of Watson Wyatt, an England based company, in this company all decisions are taken by PMO board. The PMO board has put forward eight strategies for its project which go hand-in-hand with their project strategy. The project managers are advised to prioritize their projects, allocate resources accordingly, and to maintain positive relationship with its customers. Even at IBM, we come across this type of strategic and business goals which are of great importance to the company.

Hence, company’s business interests and goals need to be implemented and imbibed in the employees so that project goals are met diligently.


Read “Hold the Line”, Janet Liao, PM Network, Oct 2007, p 49-54

·        Write a brief synopsis.

In June 2006, a real-time community recharging project was undertaken by the company, Turk cell. Converting older billing into new one without any glitches was the main aim of the project. And it was first of its kind.

Some issues in this project were forecasted by the project manager, Sibel ocal and he also worked towards eliminating these issues from the project. A lot of issues were there because it was a developing company and it wanted to migrate by 26 to 27 June.

The project scope was defined and converted into a seven-phase breakdown structure. There were 64 team members and these team members reported issues to the project manager. The team faced pressure from factors like budget constraints, time constraints, new players in the market, and aggressive competition. But, with the help and support from top management, the team succeed in launching a new billing technology on time and all the customers were migrated to it on schedule.


·        What was the main goal of the project? What was the biggest problem the project team facing, and how did the project manager solve this problem?

Launching new billing cycle and moving all the customers to the project was the main goal of the project. The biggest problem the project team faced was due to higher variation between the products and confusion among the customers due to it. So, the project manager solved this problem by defining project management process and scope. Hence, by implementing project management techniques, the project team was able to provide customer support.

·        What were the different phases of the project and why was it crucial for them to define a strict project scope? Did the project turn out to be successful and why?

The different phases of the project were Initiation, Business Analysis, Technical Analysis, Development, Test and Acceptance, Implementation and close-out. It was crucial for them to define a strict project scope because to categorize easily what needs to be done for the project. Yes, the project turned out to be successful because a redefined project management process and scope was applied which matched the customers’ needs.


·        What was the other pressures the team facing in this project? What did they do to make the project on schedule?

The other pressures the team faced during this project were budget and time constraints, new players, and aggressive market competition. With the help of additional employees and top management, they were able to complete the project on schedule.


What are the causes of scope creep and what countermeasures can be employed to minimize the occurrence?

The causes of scope creep and its countermeasures are as follows,

·        No communication between project team and customer: – This can be minimized by developing proper communication between project team and customer.

·        Project scope not defined: – This can be rectified by defining the project scope.

·        No awareness about business and customer goals: – This can be minimized by creating awareness about business and customer goals.

·        No proper statistical analysis of the project: – This can be rectified by doing correct statistical analysis of the project.

·        Avoiding design changes in the middle of the project: – This can be minimized by undertaking the design changes with a strong mindset.


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