Assignment requirements

Assignment requirements – based on the following Social Media Research Center case study

As the project manager of the Center Website you are required to present an initial project report to the project sponsor that includes the following specific project outputs to show how you propose to implement this project:

SWOT for the Social Media Research CenterProject charter for the Center Website Project WBS for the Center Website Project Stakeholder Register and Stakeholder Management Strategy for the Center Website ProjectMilestone Report for the initiating and planning processes (for the Center Website Project)

As the project manager you may make any assumptions you think are necessary.

As you prepare your report, please don’t forget to format it so that it is easy to read and conforms to the standard report format. All referencing in the project material must be in accordance with the APA style guide. A guide to the APA style of referencing (the style now used by the Faculty of Business) is available at: http://www.csu.edu.au/division/studserv/learning/pdfs/apa  

Social Media Research Center Case Study

During a meeting with his boss (Alex), Bruce has been asked to establish a researcher centre. The research centre, which will commence operations in February 2013 first as an informal research group, should be established by February 2016. Alex’s decision to proceed with this major project is spurred by the fact that an associated organizational centre, which researches in a closely related area, has recently ceased operations. There is also a tremendous pressure from Alex’s senior executives to produce high quality research that is focused in nature. In fact one of Alex’s senior executives’ comments was that Alex’s Unit does not have a clear identity when it comes to its scholarly research output compared to the one in Australian National University. After several meetings with subject matter experts (consultants) and a rigorous analysis of the current trends in research in the area of information technology it has been decided that the most appropriate research area for the proposed research center to focus on is social media. Fortunately several of Alex’s Unit staff are active researchers in this area. What made this direction even more attractive is that demand from master and doctoral students has been largely for programs in this area. Alex’s Unit also enjoys a very good relationship with an international expert in the social media area who has kindly agreed to offer his expertise to Bruce (the project manager). One of the projects within the Center larger project that Bruce has identified as important is the development of a website for the proposed centre. You are the manger of this project. 

 

Marking criteria

SWOT for the Social Media Research Center (10 marks)Project charter for the Center Website Project (20 marks) WBS for the Center Website Project (10 marks)Stakeholder Register and Stakeholder Management Strategy for the Center Website Project (20 marks)Milestone Report for the initiating and planning processes (for the Center Website Project) (10 marks)Correct in-text referencing, reference list, report format, overall presentation (10 marks) 

Please use the following formats when answering the assessment questions. You need to complete these with the content related to the assessment case study.

1. SWOT Analysis. This should be for Social Media Research Centre. You need to include minimum of 3 tasks for each.

1.
2.

3.

Strength

Opportunity

1.

2.

3.

Weakness

Threats

1.
2.

3

1.
2.
3.

2. Project Charter format:

You need to write this for the Center Website Project. You can have your own Budget and time duration to complete this tasks.

3.Level 3 WBS should be a given for the Center Website Project.

4. Format for the Stakeholder Register for the Center Website Project

Name

Position

Internal / External

Role

Contact Information

Email/ Phone

Sample Format for the Stakeholder Management Strategy for the Center Website Project

5. Format for Milestone Report for the initiating and planning processes

Milestones

Date

Status

Responsible

Issues / Comments

Initiating

Planning

chapter_4_1_.pptm

Chapter 4:
Project Integration Management

Information Technology Project Management,

Fifth Edition

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Learning Objectives

Describe an overall framework for project integration management as it relates to the other PM knowledge areas and the project life cycle

Explain the strategic planning process and apply different project selection methods

Explain the importance of creating a project charter to formally initiate projects

Discuss the process of creating a preliminary project scope statement

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Learning Objectives (continued)

Describe project management plan development, including content, using guidelines and templates for developing plans, and performing a stakeholder analysis to help manage relationships

Explain project execution, its relationship to project planning, the factors related to successful results, and tools and techniques to assist in project execution

Describe the process of monitoring and controlling project work

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Learning Objectives (continued)

Understand the integrated change control process, planning for and managing changes on information technology projects, and developing and using a change control system

Explain the importance of developing and following good procedures for closing projects

Describe how software can assist in project integration management

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The Key to Overall Project Success: Good Project Integration Management

Project managers must coordinate all of the other knowledge areas throughout a project’s life cycle

Many new project managers have trouble looking at the “big picture” and want to focus on too many details (See opening case for a real example)

Project integration management is not the same thing as software integration

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Project Integration Management Processes

Develop the project charter: working with stakeholders to create the document that formally authorizes a project—the charter

Develop the preliminary project scope statement: working with stakeholders, especially users of the project’s products, services, or results, to develop the high-level scope requirements and create a preliminary project scope statement

Develop the project management plan: coordinating all planning efforts to create a consistent, coherent document—the project management plan

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Project Integration Management Processes (continued)

Direct and manage project execution: carrying out the project management plan by performing the activities included in it

Monitor and control the project work: overseeing project work to meet the performance objectives of the project

Perform integrated change control: coordinating changes that affect the project’s deliverables and organizational process assets

Close the project: finalizing all project activities to formally close the project

Figure 4-1: Project Integration Management Summary

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Strategic Planning and Project Selection

Strategic planning involves determining long-term objectives, predicting future trends, and projecting the need for new products and services

Organizations often perform a SWOT analysis

Analyzing Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats

As part of strategic planning, organizations:

Identify potential projects

Use realistic methods to select which projects to work on

Formalize project initiation by issuing a project charter

Figure 4-2: Information Technology Planning Process

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Methods for Selecting Projects

There are usually more projects than available time and resources to implement them

Methods for selecting projects include:

Focusing on broad organizational needs

Categorizing information technology projects

Performing net present value or other financial analyses

Using a weighted scoring model

Implementing a balanced scorecard

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Focusing on Broad
Organizational Needs

It is often difficult to provide strong justification for many IT projects, but everyone agrees they have a high value

“It is better to measure gold roughly than to count pennies precisely”

Three important criteria for projects:

There is a need for the project

There are funds available

There’s a strong will to make the project succeed

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Categorizing IT Projects

One categorization is whether the project addresses:

A problem – undesirable situation that prevent an organization from achieving its goal

An opportunity – Chances to improve the organization

A directive- New requirement to improve the management

Another categorization is how long it will take to do and when it is needed

Another is the overall priority of the project

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Financial Analysis of Projects

Financial considerations are often an important consideration in selecting projects

Three primary methods for determining the projected financial value of projects

Net present value (NPV) analysis

Return on investment (ROI)

Payback analysis

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Net Present Value Analysis

Net present value (NPV) analysis is a method of calculating the expected net monetary gain or loss from a project by discounting all expected future cash inflows and outflows to the present point in time

Projects with a positive NPV should be considered if financial value is a key criterion

The higher the NPV, the better

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NPV Calculations

Determine estimated costs and benefits for the life of the project and the products it produces

Determine the discount rate

R – Discount rate t=Year

Calculate

Discounted cost =

Discounted benefits =

Note: Some organizations consider the investment year as year 0, while others start in year 1; some people enter costs as negative numbers, while others do not

NPV Calculations

Calculate

Total Discounted Cost (TDC)=

Total Discounted Benefits (TDB)=

NPV =

Net Present Value Example

Figure 4-3: Net Present Value Example

Note that

totals are

equal, but

NPVs are

not because of the time value of money

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Figure 4-4: JWD Consulting NPV Example

Multiply

by the

discount

factor each

year, then take cum.

benefits –

costs to

get NPV

Note: See the template called business_case_financials.xls

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Return on Investment

Return on investment (ROI) is calculated by subtracting the project costs from the benefits and then dividing by the costs

ROI =

ROI calculated in %.

The higher the ROI, the better

Many organizations have a required rate of return or minimum acceptable rate of return on investment for projects

Internal rate of return (IRR) can by calculated by finding the discount rate that makes the NPV equal to zero

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Payback Analysis

Another important financial consideration is payback analysis

The payback period is the amount of time it will take to recoup, in the form of net cash inflows, the total dollars invested in a project

Payback occurs when the net cumulative discounted benefits costs in POSITIVE

Many organizations want IT projects to have a fairly short payback period

Calculating Payback Period

First Calculate the discounted benefit costs for each year.

Discounted benefit costs (DBC)=

Cumulative benefits –costs (CBC) =

Initial Year =

All The Other Years

Example -Calculations

Example -1

A Schedule of future costs and benefits for a project is given in the table below. You are told that the discount rate is 8%.

Calculate NPV, ROI and Year in which payback occurs.

Do You recommend this investment? Why?

Example -2

Prepare the financial section of a business case for the Interactive Broadcast System. Assume the project will take 12 months to complete and cost about $750,000, and monthly operating costs would be about $60,000 per month for year one and $75,000 per month for years two and three. Estimated benefits are about $1 million the first year after implementation and $2 million each of the following two years. Assume a 7% discount rate.
Calculate: Calculate NPV, ROI and Year in which payback occurs.

Do You recommend this investment? Why?

0
1
2
3

Discount Factor (7%)
1.0
0.93
0.87
0.82

Costs
750,000
720,000
900,000
900,000

Disc. Costs
750,000
672,897.2
786,094.9
734,668.1

Benefits
0
1,000,000
2,000,000
2,000,000

Discounted Benefits
0
934,579.4
1,746,877.5
1,632,595.8

Disc. Benefits-Costs
-750,000
261,682.2
960,782.6
897,927.7

Cumm. Disc. Benefits-Costs
-750,000
-48,831.8
472,464.8
1,370,392.51

NPV = $1,370,393

ROI = 47%

Pay back in year 2

Figure 4-5: Charting the Payback Period

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Weighted Scoring Model

A weighted scoring model is a tool that provides a systematic process for selecting projects based on many criteria

Identify criteria important to the project selection process

Some possible criteria for IT projects are

* Support key business objectives

* Has Strong internal sponsor

* Has strong customer support

* Use realistic level of technology

* Provide positive NPV

* Has low risk on meeting scope, time and cost goals

Weighted Scoring Model

2. Assign weights (percentages) to each criterion so they add up to 100%. There weights indicates how much you value and how important these criteria’s.

3. Assign numerical scores ( 0 to 100) to each criterion for each project. Scores indicates how much you meet each criteria

4. Multiply the scores by the weights and get the total weighted scores

The higher the weighted score, the better

Figure 4-6: Sample Weighted Scoring Model for Project Selection

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Implementing a Balanced Scorecard

Drs. Robert Kaplan and David Norton developed this approach to help select and manage projects that align with business strategy

A balanced scorecard:

Is a methodology that converts an organization’s value drivers, such as customer service, innovation, operational efficiency, and financial performance, to a series of defined metrics

See www.balancedscorecard.org for more information

Figure 4-7: Balanced Scorecard Example

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Defense Finance and Accounting Service, “DFAS Strategic Plan,” Nov 2001

(http://balancedscorecard.org/files/DFAS-strategic-plan ), p. 13.

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Project Charters

After top management deciding what project to work on, it is important to let the rest of the organization know

A project charter is a document that formally recognizes the existence of a project and provides direction on the project’s objectives and management

Key project stakeholders should sign a project charter to acknowledge agreement on the need and intent of the project; a signed charter is a key output of project integration management

Figure 4-6: Project Integration Management Overview

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PMBOK® Guide Third Edition, 2004, p. 79.

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Preliminary Scope Statements

A scope statement is a document used to develop and confirm a common understanding of the project scope

It’s important for preventing scope creep

The tendency for project scope to keep getting bigger

It’s good practice to develop a preliminary or initial scope statement during project initiation and a more detailed scope statement as the project progresses.

Items Describe in Preliminary Scope Statements

Project Objectives

Product or service requirement

Project boundaries

Project Deliverables

Product acceptance criteria

Project Constrains

Initial list of define risk

Summery of Schedule milestones

Cost estimations

Table 4-1: Sample Contents for a Software Project Management Plan (SPMP)

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Stakeholder Analysis

A stakeholder analysis documents important (often sensitive) information about stakeholders such as:

Stakeholders’ names and organizations

Roles on the project

Unique facts about stakeholders

Level of influence and interest in the project

Suggestions for managing relationships

Table 4-2: Sample Stakeholder Analysis

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Project Execution

Project execution involves managing and performing the work described in the project management plan

The majority of time and money is usually spent on execution

The application area of the project directly affects project execution because the products of the project are produced during execution

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Coordinating Planning and Execution

Project planning and execution are intertwined and inseparable activities

A good plan will help to produce good results

Those who will do the work should help to plan the work

Project managers must solicit input from the team to develop realistic plans

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Providing Leadership and a Supportive Culture

Project managers must lead by example to demonstrate the importance of creating and then following good project plans

Organizational culture can help project execution by:

Providing guidelines and templates

Tracking performance based on plans

Project managers may still need to break the rules to meet project goals, and senior managers must support those actions

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Important Skills for Project Execution

General management skills like leadership, communication, and political skills

Product, business, and application area skills and knowledge

Use of specialized tools and techniques

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Project Execution Tools and Techniques

Project management methodology: many experienced project managers believe the most effective way to improve project management is to follow a methodology that describes not only what to do in managing a project, but how to do it

Project management information systems: there are hundreds of project management software products available on the market today, and many organizations are moving toward powerful enterprise project management systems that are accessible via the Internet

See the “What Went Right?” example of Kuala Lumpur’s Integrated Transport Information System on p. 161

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Monitoring and Controlling Project Work

Changes are inevitable on most projects, so it’s important to develop and follow a process to monitor and control changes.

90% of the job is communicating and managing changes

Monitoring project work includes collecting, measuring, and assessing measurements, analyzing trends to decide what process is improvement can be made

Two important outputs of monitoring and controlling project work include recommended corrective and preventive actions

Corrective action should result in improvement in project performance

Preventive action minimize the risk

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Integrated Change Control

Involves identifying, evaluating and managing changes throughout the project life cycle

Three main objectives are:

Influencing the factors that create changes to ensure that changes are beneficial

Determining that a change has occurred

Managing actual changes as they occur

A baseline is the approved project management plan plus approved changes

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Change Control on Information Technology Projects

Former view: the project team should strive to do exactly what was planned on time and within budget

Problem: stakeholders rarely agreed up-front on the project scope, and time and cost estimates were inaccurate

Modern view: project management is a process of constant communication and negotiation

Solution: changes are often beneficial, and the project team should plan for them

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Change Control System

A formal, documented process that describes when and how official project documents and work may be changed

Describes who is authorized to make changes and how to make them

Often include Change Control Board, Configuration management and a process for communicating changes

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Change Control Board (CCB)

A formal group of people responsible for approving or rejecting changes on a project

CCBs provide guidelines for preparing change requests, evaluate change requests, and manage the implementation of approved changes

Includes stakeholders from the entire organization

Drawback is the time takes to make decisions. Often CCB meets once a week or once a month

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Making Timely Changes

Some CCBs only meet occasionally, so it may take too long for changes to occur

Some organizations have policies in place for time-sensitive changes

“48-hour policy” allows project team members to make decisions, then they have 48 hours to reverse the decision pending senior management approval

Delegate changes to the lowest level possible, but keep everyone informed of changes

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Configuration Management

Ensures that the descriptions of the project’s products are correct and complete

Involves identifying and controlling the functional and physical design characteristics of products and their support documentation

Configuration management specialists identify and document configuration requirements, control changes, record and report changes, and audit the products to verify conformance to requirements

See www.icmhq.com for more information

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Table 4-3: Suggestions for Performing Integrated Change Control

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Closing Projects

To close a project, you must finalize all activities and transfer the completed or cancelled work to the appropriate people

Main outputs include:

Administrative closure procedures

Contract closure procedures

Final products, services, or results

Organizational process asset updates, including project documentation, project closure documentation, historical information produced by the project in useful format

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Using Software to Assist in Project Integration Management

Several types of software can be used to assist in project integration management

Documents can be created with word-processing software

Presentations are created with presentation software

Tracking can be done with spreadsheets or databases

Communication software like e-mail and Web authoring tools facilitate communications

Project management software can pull everything together and show detailed and summarized information

Business Service Management (BSM) tools track the execution of business process flows

Homework

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