Earned Value Management—An “Overhead” View (PART 2: EVM Drawbacks and Benefits)

By | May 23rd, 2014|Project Management, Project Management Methodology, Project Tracking|Comments Off on Earned Value Management—An “Overhead” View (PART 2: EVM Drawbacks and Benefits)

Earned value management (EVM) is an efficient methodology for monitoring and predicting project performance only if it is correctly and timely applied. Otherwise, it can become a negative risk for the project, as it ends up consuming managers’ and project teams’ time without producing accurate estimates.

EVM Drawbacks or Limitations

Putting an EVM system in place attracts implementation costs, training costs, software costs, and other associated costs. In addition, generally only organizations with a mature project management system – that is, those that use well-defined processes and procedures consistently across projects – rely on EVM. Organizations that have inconsistent project management practices or little experience with projects may have more to lose than to win if attempting to invest their efforts into using EVM, as it requires accurate project planning and effective change management practices. Proper project planning includes, among many others, documenting requirements well and creating a good work breakdown structure – both essential for EVM.

If the project plan is faulty, EVM will result in misleading results, which are not only a waste of time and effort, but may also lead to project failure. Some organizations start employing EVA analyses in their projects, only to find out later that they got no reliable results. Instead, they realize that employing this technique only added to the cost of managing their projects. Usually, in these situations, the culprit is not EVA, but a missing earned value management system, which may well be the case in an organization with little experience in running projects. (more…)

RationalPlan 4.8 – Hungarian Language Support, Ubuntu Adoption and Earned Value Analysis

By | May 12th, 2014|News, RationalPlan|1 Comment

Stand By Soft is pleased to announce the release of version 4.8 for RationalPlan project management suite. Current version comes with significant changes that will certainly help users: Hungarian language was added, Ubuntu integration, support for Earned Value Analysis, tasks distribution in Timesheet view, improved filtering and many other features.

RationalPlan is a project management suite that started as a desktop application designed to run on all major operating systems – Windows, Linux and Mac OS X – but it evolved into an embedded management system that is now available even as a cloud service both for individuals and for companies that need a distributed solution with concurrent access from multiple users.

Important changes for this version:

  • Added possibility for Earned Value Analysis – including CV, SV, CPI, SPI, ACWP, BCWP, BCWS related values
  • Better integration with Ubuntu
  • The products are now also available in Hungarian
  • Tomcat 8 compatibility for the On Premise solution
  • Added tasks distribution in Timesheet view
  • More work on filters
  • Also export data to Microsoft Project .xml format when working with the Server
  • Also export the reschedule date to .xls
  • Changes related to email notifications for resources
  • Added information about documents on tasks in the Info column
  • Compatibility with Google Calendar – updated libraries for iCalendar integration
  • Project import into Server should not be done if you do not have rights to add projects, resources, calendars and clients

At multiple users requests it was added the possibility to perform Earned Value Analysis. Users are now able to work with well known entities like CV, SV, CPI, SPI, ACWP, BCWP, BCWS. For those that are more interested on this subject, the team behind RationalPlan prepared some short tutorials on Earned Value Management. (more…)

Earned Value Management—An “Overhead” View (PART 1: EVM Basics)

Despite being one of those topics that put project management students into the doldrums, earned value management remains the most effective way for monitoring project performance. It is a project management methodology used by the U.S. Department of Defense and by many private companies all over the world. Besides a PMBOK chapter and the U.S. Department of Defense EVM Implementation Guide, many other resources cover this topic.

This article—structured in two parts—outlines earned value management in an attempt to provide a starting point for anyone interested in exploring the topic or wanting to decide if it is something his or her organization might use.

EVM, EV, EVA, and EVMS—Not Interchangeable Acronyms

According to the authors of the PMBOK, earned value management (EVM) “integrates project scope, cost, and schedule measures to help the project management team assess and measure project performance and progress.” EVM is a system for project management control that uses earned value as a criterion.

PMBOK defines earned value (EV) as “the value of work performed expressed in terms of approved budget assigned to that work for an activity or work breakdown structure component. It is the authorized work that has been completed, plus the authorized budget for such completed work.” (more…)