Integrated Project Controls

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Location:  PMKI > Project Controls and Scheduling > Integrated Project Controls. 
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Project controls is an integrated process that include the data gathering, management and analytical processes used to predict, understand and constructively influence the time and cost outcomes of a project or program through the communication of useful information. This subject focuses on the overall integrated process of ‘controlling’ a project or program.

Topics included in Integrated Project Controls:

- Project Controls Overview
- Project Control Functions & Techniques
- Future Trends in Project Controls
- Project Control & CPM Failures and Challenges
- Useful External Web-links & Resources.

Other related sections of the PMKI:

- Monitor and control project work (PMBOK)


Project Controls Overview

Management always involves the monitoring and controlling of activities to ensure they remain as closely aligned to the plans as is practical. The objective of project controls is to provide a holistic picture of the current status of the project and information needed to manage its ongoing activities. This requires the integration of the various project controls functions to develop information to assist in both the management of the project and communication with stakeholders.

WP: Project Controls – A Definition. Project controls are the data gathering, management and analytical processes used to predict, understand and constructively influence the time and cost outcomes of a project or program through the communication of information in formats that assist effective governance and management decision making.

Prs: Practical project controls – the art of getting to ‘Done’!  Getting to ‘done’ is the objective of any project, done on time, done on budget and done to the satisfaction of stakeholders. Most projects fail to achieve this. This presentation looks at the reasons for this failure and suggest a practical framework for successfully getting your projects to ‘done’ including:

  1. The importance of properly defining how the work of the project will be done including understanding scope, resources and time management, all of which affect cost outcomes.
  2. The importance of proactively managing the risks and uncertainties that will affect the work needed to be accomplished.
  3. The critical importance of stakeholder engagement and communication in making project controls an effective tool to help the project team successfully reach ‘done’.
  4. The limitations of project controls (real and imposed) will be highlighted and mitigation strategies suggested.
    Download the presentation.

      

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Project Control Functions and Techniques

Prs: Projects controls using integrated data. The future of project time management as an integrated part of an overall project information system.

WP: Gateways and Score Cards. Two approaches to determining the on-going viability of a project and measuring its success are ‘gateway reviews’ and balanced scorecards.

PP: The Project Start-Up Conundrum. At the time when the project team can exert the greatest influence on a project's overall success, the team itself is forming and at its least effective!!! Solutions include:

  • Providing support to the project team to minimize the time required for it to grow into an effective unit
  • Expanding the role of the Project Office to include specific project "Start Up" responsibilities, and
  • Training (or developing, or contracting) a specialist project "Start Up" task force to assist in the critical initial phases of a project and progressively hand over to the permanent team.
    Download the paper.  

PP: Improving Schedule Management. This paper defines a new role for the project schedule and the project scheduler within the complex, dynamic, collaborative environment that defines many modern projects.

Art: The Scheduling Conundrum. Effective scheduling makes a significant difference to project success but in most projects, the schedule is ignored, bad scheduling practice is the norm and most projects finish late.

       

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Future Trends in Project Controls

Blg: The future of project controls. Using modern technology to focus on what really matters, resources accomplishing work in the optimum sequence for each location. 

     

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Project Control & CPM Failures and Challenges

DP: £500m Project Failure - Riding A Tiger: some lessons of Taurus. The collapse of project Taurus, the London Stock Exchange’s £500 million IT venture in 1993 still ranks as one of the major fiascos of business history. This paper highlights key mistakes in the project’s design and construction and discusses their implications for management.

 


CPM Issues and Challenges

Art: The Scheduling Conundrum. Effective scheduling makes a significant difference to project success but in most projects, the schedule is ignored, bad scheduling practice is the norm and most projects finish late.

Art: Problems with scheduling practice. A brief look at the three major problem areas affecting scheduling practice.

Art: The problem with CPM. The problem with scheduling and CPM is not the technology, it’s a lack of skills on the part of the people employed as schedulers.

Blg: Critical confusion – when activities on the critical path don’t compute…… The use of Finish-to-Finish and Start-to-Start links (particularly in combination) can cause significant issues in calculating the overall project duration.

PP: Float - Is It Real? Float only exists because of the limitations built into CPM calculations, while it is useful, it is not 'real' - full paper.

Art: Float is it real? Float only exists because of the limitations built into CPM calculations, while it is useful, it is not 'real' - short summary. 

See also: Schedule Challenges and Issues

     

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Useful External Web-links & Resources

The Guild of Project controls. Developing standards and certifications based on the Project Controls Compendium and Reference (GPCCaR), developed and managed by a global project controls community: http://www.planningplanet.com/guild

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