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Tom Shanahan

Recent Posts

DoD Cost and Software Data Reporting (CSDR) FlexFile Requirements

If your company has DoD contracts, did you know that beginning on May 15, 2019, the default cost reporting formats for Cost and Software Data Reporting (CSDR) is the Cost and Hour Report or FlexFile?  

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Managing Constant Change

Attend any industry conference or talk with any project manager and a recurring theme is the volume and velocity of changes because work requirements must respond to ever-evolving threats or business environment.  What is the impact of this constant change on the project manager and other project personnel?  It is easy to lose track of things or become overwhelmed.  Everyone needs a way to maintain their focus on completing their current work scope and the end product.  How do you manage constant change so you can maintain sufficient control of project objectives without descending into chaos? 

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Do You Really Need EVM Software to Manage Your Projects?

What percentage of your projects have earned value management system (EVMS) requirements?  For a typical company with government contracts, roughly 80 percent of their projects are below the threshold for EVMS compliance reviews ($100M) or reporting ($20M).  These smaller projects are often cost incentive or firm fixed price contracts, that when taken a whole, are equally important to the company’s bottom line.  How are you maintaining management visibility and control into that portfolio of projects to ensure project objectives and profit margins are met?

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BOEMax Tech Tips – Establishing a Process Library

BOEMax was designed to help our clients create data driven cost estimates easier and faster.  The Process Library is just one of many functions built into BOEMax for this purpose.  This blog is an introduction to the Process Library and how it can help cost estimators improve the quality of their cost estimate data.

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DCMA’s Data Driven EVMS Compliance Process

  Why the Right Tools Can Make a Difference DCMA recently published an update to their set of test metrics they use for their Earned Value Management System (EVMS) compliance process.  As for previous versions, Version 3.2 is a combination of manual and automated tests of the EVMS data – hence the label “Data Driven EVMS Compliance Process.”  Version 3.2 includes 139 test metrics with additional cross references to three of their EVMS Business Practices (BP):

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Why You Need Data Driven Resource Requirement Planning

A common business challenge for our clients is the ability to access and organize quantifiable data so they can proactively manage the resource demands for likely contract awards and existing projects.  The problem is they lack the ability to gather credible source data from the proposal process and the project control system to provide a useful corporate wide or business unit view of resource requirements.

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Why Tools from a Small Software Vendor is a Better Investment

As we are working with potential clients during their selection process for proposal software or earned value management software, we often run into the misconception that tools from the large, legacy software vendors is a lower risk purchase.  They focus on the vendor’s annual revenue, conclude bigger is better, and thus equals lower risk.  

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Why Estimates at Completion Matter

One of the process areas we frequently help our clients with is establishing time-phased estimate to complete (ETC) data to be able to produce credible estimates at completion (EACs) during the execution phase of a project. The intent of the ETC data is to provide a realistic plan to complete the remaining work. Adding the cumulative to date actual costs to the estimate to complete provides an indication of the likely total expenditures for the project – the estimate at completion. The EAC is compared to the budget at completion (BAC) at the various levels of detail to identify and analyze areas of concern.

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Looking to Improve Your Change Control Process?

Managing and tracking baseline changes is a common issue for project managers and project control personnel. Change control is one of those process areas that requires some effort to maintain a basic level of project control discipline and data traceability. Ideally, the change control process isn’t overly restrictive. Case in point: a client that required project personnel to process a baseline change request to correct typos in work package descriptions. When the process is too painful, project personnel avoid making needed changes resulting in schedule and cost data that doesn’t reflect the project’s current state. Hopefully, your change control process has established a reasonable level for what triggers a baseline change request.

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Creating Data Driven Basis of Estimates

What is a data driven basis of estimate? It is a cost estimate that is based on verifiable data. Ideally, it is historical or other data that is traceable to the source business system such as accounting, timekeeping, material management, purchasing, or manufacturing. Along with verifiable data, the rationale used to arrive at the estimate must be clearly documented and easily available. The proposal team and customer must be able to follow the thought process, methodology, assumptions, and calculations used to arrive at the cost estimate.

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