February 2010

The EVM Newsletter™
from Management Technologies
In This Issue
Getting the Latest NDIA Intent Guide
Talk about PARCA is not talk about the Weather!
EVM Tidbit #7, WBS Fan-Out
Book Review, "Earned Schedule"
Raytheon Exec Addresses PMSC

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College of Performance Management
 Measureable News
2010 Issue 1
PMI College of Performance Management has published their first 2010 issue.
This issue has articles
on: EVM in teaming 
measuring the health of your EVMS,  
acticity based costing and EVM, and others
You do not need to be a member to read the Measureable News 
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2010 EVP Exam Dates
AACEI has published their 2010 EVP exam dates. Non-US dates are within a week or two of US dates. Listed are the exam date, the deadline for discounted applications, and the final date for applications.  Exams are generally held nationwide (US). The exam on 6/26 is only held in Georgia, US. 
Exam: 6/26 (Georgia only)
Early Discounted: 4/13
Deadline: 4/27
Early Discounted:4/27
Exam: 11/6
Early Discounted: 8/23
Deadline: 9/6
Always check with AACEI for revised dates and application information

Do you have the latest NDIA EVMS Intent Guide?
If you Google "NDIA Intent Guide" and you will likly get links to the March 2007 edition. NDIA has a June 2009 Guide that is based upon ANSI 748-B. It also has improved discussion of control accounts, work packages, EAC & ETC, and other topics.  

TRLtopTRL Levels Defined
Technology Readiness Levels (TRL) are used by some US agencies to estimate the technical risks associated with a develpment project. Here is DoD's. 
1. Basic principles observed and reported
2. Technology concept and/or application formulated

3. Analytical and experimental critical function and/or characteristic proof of concept

4. Component and/or breadboard validation in laboratory environment

5. Component and/or breadboard validation in relevant environment

6. System/subsystem model or prototype demonstration in a relevant environment

7. System prototype demonstration in an operational environment

8. Actual system completed and 'flight qualified' through test and demonstration

9. Actual system 'flight proven' through successful TRLmission operations

No, People are Not Talking About the Recent D.C. Weather When They Mention.... 
PARCA. A lot of talk in Washington about PARCA, but not the cold weather kind.
While D.C. has been buried in snow, the talk about PARCA has little to do with weather, and will continue into the warm Summer.
Mr. Gary Bliss, Director of Performance Assessment and Root Cause Analyses (PARCA) addressed the NDIA PMSC audience on the roles of this new office and his vision. The PARCA was created from the Weapons System Acquisition Reform Act (WSARA). The role is to provide senior Pentagon (USD (AT&L) leaders with program execution phase situational awareness. His current vision for his office is (1) cost, schedule and technical performance assessment and (2) root cause analysis for programs that fail. This latter vision will assign blame and create actionable corrective recommendations.
He summarized the PARCA office as 'the police in the highway median with a radar gun". The goal is to bring any bad news to DoD leadership sooner.
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Well this Newsletter is about a week later than I hoped. I guess an SPI < 1 is going to happen now and then.
This issue contains some speakers' remarks made at the NIDA PMSC meeting held in early February in LA. I had to obtain the OK to publish their comments and to make sure I cited them correctly. Thus the delay. 
Also, is this issue, as promised, is a review of Lipke's book Earned Schedule. Lipke's concepts have the potential to get even more value from practicing EVM.
There's an EVM tidbit on considerations in placing control accounts with the project WBS.
Remember, March 10 is the deadline to comment on the pending DFAR clause to withhold payments by 10% for contractors who have "defective" management systems. See the January EVM Newsletter for more information. (Link in the left column).
Remember, if your not subscribed, you can use the link on the left to get The EVM Newsletter e-mailed directly to you. Share the news, forward The EVM Newsletter to a friend or co-worker. Just use the link below on the left panel or at the bottom of the Newsletter.
You can help make this newsletter interesting by contributing news about your activities in EVM, your company, product announcements, or your projects. Each month starts with a blank sheet, we don't make this stuff up! Send news to me at evinfo@mgmt-technologies.com
Ray Stratton, PMP,EVP
EVM Tidbit #7
WBS Fan-out drives EVMS costs upward......
In electronic engineering terms "fan-out" is used to describe the ability of one circuit or logic gate to provide sufficient power to subsequent circuits (or gates) to perform their functions.  Often one gate will "drive" two or more dependent gates. Specifications tell engineers how many gates can be driven before the first gate runs out of power.
In WBS structures we have the same concept. As the WBS goes to lower and lower levels the upper levels need to support all the children and grandchildren and great grandchildren. While electrical circuits may run out of power, the EVMS might just run out of resources to drive a deep WBS. Depending where the control account (CA) and CAMs are located in the WBS has a lot to do with how much effort ("power") is required to drive the EVMS. The financial, scheduling, baseline control, work authorization processes, and many other processes are focused on the control account and support the CAM.
Assume we have a project with four WBS elements at level 2. At each lower level we spawn three child WBS accounts. Assume we place the CA at the lowest level of the WBS. With three WBS levels we have 12 CA, at WBS level 4 we have 36, and level 5 we have 108, and at level 6 we have 324. While a more detailed WBS might be good consider where you place the CA. They do not have to be at the lowest WBS levels. You do not want to use most of your time and resources to just administer to the needs of the EVMS and WBS.  I'd hate to have to state, "We'd be able to make progress on the project if we didn't spend all our time running the EVMS!"

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Earned Schedule Book Review
Earned Schedule by Walter Lipke, Lulu Publishing

Depending on who you ask Earned Schedule (ES) has been around forES Book a few years or since EVM was created. The graphical analysis of finding the point in time where the current EV meets the PMB (PV) has been practiced for years as a means to determine how many weeks or months the project is ahead or behind schedule. But it was Lipke who defined a common terminology and analysis equations in 2003. Research has validated his ES analysis tools as being superior to most other methods of estimating project completion date most of the time. Earned Schedule is the first book to fully explain ES, but the concept can be explained in less than 1000 words. What Lipke has produced is a graduate level book on the subject of EVM, new analysis tools, and very interesting concepts!
This is not an entry level discussion of EVM. There are many books that cover basic EVM. This book is unique in the theories and concepts it addresses and the reader should have a deep understanding of EVM to appreciate what Lipke has done. At only 170 pages, it looks like a weekend read, but I got bogged down in some of the formulas and concepts and had to put the book down and let my brain cool a while. There is much to understand and lots to learn.
ES helps us know where the project sits in the time line and answers the question, "What is the effective date of our progress to date?" Are we 150 days into the project, but completed only 125 days of work, or 167 days of work? That is the first product from ES. But Lipke takes us further. Now that we know where we really are in the project timeline (the ES date), we can examine the schedule and see what tasks should have been started, underway, or complete. We should be following the project plan and doing work in the proper sequence. Thus all the EV at the ES date should be produced from work up to but not beyond our ES date (not our status date). But often project teams start other work because (1) they can, (2) it's more interesting, (3) it's easier, (4) they're stuck, or (5) to get ahead of schedule. Doing work out of sequence means not completing prerequisite work. Lipke claims that this just generates rework since some of the expected knowledge is missing. Lipke's defines Schedule Adherence as an index (0-1.0) showing how much of the work done to date is per the project plan. He has named the index the P-Factor and it shows the ratio of work done that should have been done; 1.0 shows the plan is being followed perfectly.  It helps the PM know if the EV (BCWP) is the right EV or just EV. Lipke then creates an effective EV, EV(e) that considers the amount of rework that might be encountered so that forecasts of funds and time consider the amount out of sequence work.
Not to fear, Lipke includes examples of his theories if terms like "exponential" and "derivative" cause you to recall bad memories of high school algebra you will still appreciate his ideas.
Of course, like basic EVM you have to start with a sound plan and reasonably accurate EVM performance data. If you have that then Lipke's ideas will allow you to extract much more insight into your project and its likely outcome. He makes note that the first item of importance is a good estimate of EV. Lipke has provided free downloadable spreadsheets to do all the analysis. I'd put a link here, but you really need to read his book before you try to apply his ideas. 
The paperback price is $36 (USD) while the download is available at $14 (USD).
WorkshopsEarned Value Experience™ (CAM workshop) and EVPrep™ Exam Prep Workshop UPDATED 2010 Schedule 
Earned Value Experience (CAM) Workshop
You'll experience creating an earned value management baseline, determining earned value from project status, Classroomcalculating earned value management indices, and estimating final cost and completion date. This workshop is perfect for team leads, cost account managers, financial and schedule control staff, project and program managers, and chief project officers. 
Excel EzEVM™ Templates may be retained by attendees to implement earned value management in their organization.
The Earned Value Experience (CAM) workshop will be conducted in:
  • Arlington VA Apr 6-7
  • Denver CO Apr 13-14
  • Costa Mesa CA May 17-18  
View the Earned Value Experience (CAM) workshop outline and get the registration form.
EVPrep Exam Prep Workshop

The workshop covers all the topics likely covered in the exam and provides exam-like questions and workshop discussion about each question and the possible answers. This workshop also includes an EVM analysis question to help prepare you for the three page written essay in Part 4.
The EVPrep™ workshop will be conducted in  
  • Arlington VA Apr 8-9
  • Denver CO Apr 15-16
  • Tampa FL May 4-5
  • Costa Mesa CA May 19-20
 Do you have a EVP FAQ
Go to AACEI's website for the latest information about exam dates.
View the EVPrep workshop outline and get the registration form.
Interested in an on-site workshop? Send an e-mail with your your address and the number of attendees to receive a quote.
Upcoming EVM and PM Conferences 
24th IPMA World Congress
WHEN: 1 -3 November 2010
WHERE:Istanbul, Turkey 
MORE INFO: http://www.ipma2010.com/congress.php 
EVMWorld 2010
WHO:PMI College of Performance Management
WHEN:June 2-4
WHERE: Naples, FL, USA
MORE INFO: www.pmi-cpm.org
WHO: Deltek
WHEN: May 17-20
WHERE: Washington DC, USA
EVA Europe 2010
WHEN:Nov 24-25
WHERE: Belgium
EVM Jobs 
Deltek is hiring consultants (several) that
 have the following downward chartskills:
·         EVM Experience 
·         Deltek product experience with any of the following:
  • Deltek Open Plan™, or
  • Deltek MPM™, or
  • Deltek Cobra™
  • Please contact markinfanti@deltek.com or call 714-943-8112
 Extended travel to customer sites is required,
Do you have openings for EVM professionals? Send an email describing the position and location in 25 words or less and a link to a more complete description of the position.

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Raytheon Exec Addresses NIDA PMSC Meeting
Dan SmithThe National Defense Industrial Association's (NDIA) Program Management Systems Committee (PMSC) is best known for their NDIA Intent Guide and other EVMS guides. The PMSC meets several times a year. The last meeting was in Los Angeles two weeks ago.
Mr. Dan Smith, President IDS, Raytheon Company spoke to the group. Addressing the defense industry and government attendees, Dan reminded the group that the ultimate customer of their products is the US war fighter. A former Naval Officer, Dan set the following goals for the government and industry representatives:
  • A shared sense of urgency. Get our work done quickly and get the products to the war fighters quickly.
  • Develop a sense of teamwork (government and industry) toward meeting the above goal
  • Develop a sense of pride for those who accomplish the above two goals
  • Move away from Award Fee contracts toward appropriate incentive based
  • Use TRL levels (see sidebar at left) to determine appropriate contracting vehicles
According to Dan one step toward accomplishing the above goals is to reduce the number of contracts to one per program. Each contract has its overhead and support staff. By reducing the number of contracts the effort and expense is reduced. Project management is overhead. One metric Dan watches is PMO staff per project value. Dan's business segment has reduced the required PMO staff by 1/3 per dollar of contract value.
Dan's closing comments reminded the group to (a) have a common goal and focus, (b), partner effectively, and (c) hold both government and industry accountable. Project (program) management is not rocket science but if we do it right the frontline war fighters will think it is rocket science. "Get it done - on time, make sure it works."
Do you have news to share? Send your news item and we'll review it for posting in a future EVM Newsletter.
Ray Stratton
Management Technologies

The EVM Newsletter, EVPrep, The Earned Value Management Maturity Model, EVM3, EzEVM, and The Earned Value Experience are trademarks of Management Technologies. The Earned Value Professional and EVP are trademarks of the Association for the Advancement of Cost Engineering, International. (AACEi®)