About the Coursework
The coursework is designed to “cap” your learning and practice. Each week you will engage with learning material in the module which will be both theoretical and practice based. For example you will learn about how risk is assessed in projects and how to develop a risk plan, you will then apply this learning and practice to the scenario you are given in this coursework. You should therefore aim to target your learning and practice at the coursework which you will develop each week as you go along. Do not leave it to the last minute as this is a recipe for disaster, there is a lot to this, as you would expect from this level of module.
This part of the coursework aims to develop your skills in tracking and managing the project during the implementation stage. In other words we want to simulate how we can manage and organise events, times and budgets as the work on the plan is actually getting done. Your job as the PM is to manage everything and make amendments to the implementation chart as things occur that will cause the project to drift off plan.
You may need some of the information from the first coursework, so have it handy and you will also need the revised plan you developed for the first coursework as this will form the basis of the implementation tracking that you are going to do.
In the implementation phase we are tracking live events which occur and what will happen is that the actual days used and resource usage will be different than the original plan so what we need to do here is to track how different our current situation is to the plan, and in the coursework you have to take actions and decisions to get the plan back on track. This may mean cutting time allocated to tasks or issuing overtime or asking for more resources or put some more activities happening in parallel to claw back time. There is no prescribed solution, only something that works within the parameters you are given, how you achieve it is your job as project manager.
Report 2 – Implementing and Reviewing the Project
Part A – Project Implementation
(see Implementation Notes below)
Submit a Microsoft project file with the following products
- Tracking chart of actual achievement
- Resource sheet which contains the following for each human resource
- Normal Hours worked
- Normal Costs on the Project
This chart should be deliberately off Plan and will not meet the target date for the conference. You will apply Notice of Change 2 here, and it is this notice that will throw the project off course.
This file will be called Implementation Plan
Submit a second Microsoft project file with the following products
- Tracking chart of actual achievement and how the project gets back on target by the actions you have taken to offset the effects of Notice of Change 2.
- Resource allocations must not show over allocations
- The Final Cash Flow Analysis must not be over budget (10% leeway allowed)
- The Variance Report should show the difference between the planed times and cost in relation to the actual time and cost, these will be checked.
- This Revision Version will contain revision of above plan. You must allocate overtime to at least 3 resources.
- Included in the resource sheet for each human resource are two new columns
- Overtime Hours
- Overtime Costs
This file will be called Revised Implementation
Please submit these in a folder called “Implementing the Project”
Part B – Reviewing the Project
(1500 words approx. excluding tables etc)
This section is a reflective review on the operation of the project. Ie the Project Manager’s final report
In the report you should discuss;
- The strengths and weakness of the plan in relation to the final achievement
- Management issues that affected the project
- Resourcing issues that affected the project
- How Quality Control could be built into a project of this type
- The importance of the earned value report and what it tells us
- Why version control is important in large scale projects
- Recommendations on how to close down this project successfully
- How you would do things differently if you were to plan and manage a similar project
- What lessons can be learned by DevEd Ltd from this project that could have a benefit to other projects they may develop and how to avoid the main issues leading to project failure.
Please submit this in a document called “Reviewing the Project”
- Implementing the project first of all entails taking the original plan from Part One and making sure it is the baseline for any further development. Any changes will reflect against this baseline, tracking will not work unless you set up the baseline.
- Make sure you carry out the instructions in Notification 2. This will take the existing project into drift from the plan. This file will be called Implementation Plan
- The notice that will be served will change the timings of the project end date. We will examine the file to look for what was planned (the Baseline) tracked against the new timings required (the tracking) there should be a marked difference.. You will need to make decisions to get the project back on time to the existing end date as defined in the revised plan in the last coursework. This file is called Revised Implementation.
Existing Project parameters
The following is a list of constraints on the project as already defined.
- The daily working time for the standard calendar is from 0900 – 1200 and 13.30 – 16.30. The first Monday in May is a Bank Holiday.
- All Researchers only work from Monday to Thursday inclusive
- Researcher 3 has two weeks holiday booked for the last two weeks in May
- The Project manager is not available on Mondays as that is when all PM’s meet with senior management to plan and report on the weeks activities
- Administrative Assistant 2 is off for one week at the end of June
- There is an overtime ban during June
- The Graphic Artist is only available to the Project for 4 days.
- There will be an external audit of all projects in the second week of July, all project managers must ensure that no deficit on project budgets are shown in that week as this could effect client funding for the future.
- You will need to assign overtime for the revised implementation.
There is no right or wrong answer to the coursework only a solution which works well within bounds of reason so the way you design the plans will be up to you.
You may authorise overtime to the project if the project is likely to slip during the implementation stage, this may to necessary depending upon notices issued during this stage.
You can play around with the allocations of staff to get the best mix, this sometimes helps in budgeting. A good manager with an eye on budgets will deploy cheaper resources more often, but watch out for over allocation, you will be penalised.
When assigning material resources, you assign them once only to the project which will be logged as a cost against the project. For example do not assign Laptop 1 more than once as this would have a repeated cost to the project and would blow your budget. Once the material resource is assigned it is available to the project until completion.
If you cannot achieve the project within budget or with existing resources you must notify this to your lecturer and make a justified case for allocation of more funds or resources which may or may not be granted depending on the strength of the case. Marks may be added or may be deducted, again depending on the strength of the case. This is risky but you may want to try it. You should log this request and the response in the your files and submit these with this coursework
The usual penalties will apply for late submission.
This Coursework is worth 50% of the marks for the Module and will be marked out of 100 marks.