Prd 026 Factors impacting time and budget Created by James on 6/26/2013 5:30:51 AM
The following is an overview of the factors that can adversely impact project time line and budget and which will need to be tightly managed – these factors are raised in response to problems experienced on other projects – with effective cooperation and team work by all involved NONE of these issues should occur.
These points are raised at the outset of the project so their occurrence can be prevented.
Corresponding diligence and discipline on the part of the facilitator is equally necessary.
1. Exit of sponsor or other key person
If the project sponsor or other key person leaves the client firm or the project it is vital to pause the project and fully brief and orientate the successor before resuming work – massive problems can result if this is NOT done – this constitutes a cost that is NOT provided for in a standard budget.
2. Key person absent from workshops
If a workshop starts and a key person fails to arrive the workshop must either be paused until the person can get there (standing time applies), or cancelled (standing time applies) or it must be understood that if they miss this workshop and then attend a subsequent workshop and start raising issues any time to respond to those issues is not provided for in the project budget – continuity is vital.
Where a critical team member advises ahead of time that they cannot attend a scheduled workshop or part of a workshop for unavoidable and valid reasons the session must either be rescheduled or a suitable substitute must attend or the person concerned must understand that raising objections and changes at a subsequent meeting could result in extra time and possibly cost.
3. Critical person omitted from project team
Where it is found later in the project that a critical person was omitted from the team from the start, the time required to consult with and engage with that person and bring their inputs into the design will represent an over budget extra cost.
4. Sessions start on time
It is vital that scheduled sessions start on time – if a session starts late this may give rise to a standing time charge and may necessitate an extra session at extra cost.
5. Proceed at NOT longer than weekly intervals
Where the gaps between workshops are longer than a week both the facilitator and the client personnel start to forget where they were in the previous session with the result that start-up time for the next workshop is longer than it would otherwise be.
A gap of more than two weeks will typically result in the loss of the first hour of the next workshop.
6. May need to run into evenings
Where a project is running to a tight fixed price and / or schedule it may be necessary to run into the evening for full day or afternoon sessions in order to cover everything scheduled, there will be NO extra charge over and above the scheduled time in cases where the extension is a necessary part of reaching a conclusion.
7. Client engagement with content is critical
It is vital that client personnel engage with the content, the process and the design at all times.
If rework or further iterations are required because team members are distracted and not engaged with the process these may constitute an additional charge unless the rework or further iterations are clearly a consequence of error on the part of the facilitator.
Cell phones and email must be switched OFF during workshops.
8. Off-line checking is critical
Throughout the project off-line checking will be required.
Specifically, as each iteration of the Master Chart of Accounts is created, client personnel must take that list and tick it against the existing Chart of Accounts to make sure that all accounts are catered for and then bring a list of missing accounts to the next workshop. They must also run through the Chart of Accounts with other personnel who might have opinions about what should be covered.
If these activities do NOT take place and it proves necessary to tick the new Chart of Accounts against the old Chart in the next workshop this will be an extra-over charge relative to the budget. The same will apply if after several workshops items are suddenly identified as missing that could have been identified in earlier sessions.
Once the draft Cubic Business Model© has been generated client personnel will be requested to review this with operational personnel and bring a list of items to be added to the next workshop. If this is not done the time required to review the model in the workshop will be an extra-over charge.
Once the final Cubic Business Model© has been produced staff will be requested to map the old Chart of Accounts onto the new Chart of Accounts off-line and bring a set of mappings and a list of adjustments to the next workshop. If this is not done the time required to map the accounts will be an extra-over charge.
9. Additional iterations are sometimes really justified
Notwithstanding all the above these things CAN take longer than expected even if all parties do their best – should it become apparent that this may be happening timeous discussions with regard to budget management versus the quality of the deliverable must be initiated.
10. Where client site is more than 1 hours’ drive these issues are more of a challenge
These factors become a bigger issue where the travelling time from our offices in Johannesburg to the Client site is more than one hour either way and particularly where there are considerable travelling and accommodation costs involved – in such cases late night sessions may be required.
I hope that this outline has given some idea of the factors that need to be managed in order to comply with a tight project budget and timeline.
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