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Posts Under "Cost Management"

As A Project Manager Do You Want To Sleep Well At Night?
By Morley Selver, P.Eng IPMA B
In my past, I worked in Central Engineering for a large worldwide company. One day myself and another project manager got a call to attend a meeting with a Senior VP at one of our facilities. The project had purchased a used paper machine in the UK and were to install it in their plant. The facility engineering manager was running the project and they were $10 million over budget. As we found out later, they had done some planning and scoping but not nearly enough. Ohhhh Ohhhh Senior management were fed up and wanted Central Engineering to take over... Read More»

4 Ways to Shorten a Project Schedule
By Alan Zucker
Every project manager can construct a good project schedule. Great project managers can take that same body of work and deliver it more quickly without reducing scope or compromising quality. The great PMs can cut 10%-25% from a schedule by understanding how teams work and where there are opportunities within the project plan itself. Parkinson's Law states, “Work expands to meet the time available for its completion." The project corollary is that tasks are not completed before their planned finish date. Project planning has deep roots in engineering principles. Henry Gantt (developer of the Gantt Chart) worked with Frederick Taylor... Read More»

Project Freight
By Morley Selver, P.Eng IPMA B
As a project manager, there are a lot of things you have to be aware of know otherwise you could end up in trouble. One of those things is freight. On all your projects you will be purchasing equipment which will be shipped to your facility. There are several items you have to be aware of and be prepared to change if you perceive a problem. If you look at an equipment quotation or purchase order you will notice two items relating to the shipping. One item is a statement that states how the goods will be shipped. The two... Read More»

Oh Oh, We Should Have Discussed This With Operations! Part III
By Morley Selver, P.Eng IPMA B
This article is a continuation of last months article on Operators responsibilities. Solicit input from peers for "moan list" item resolution prior to hydrotests, or other problems that have been missed in the design specifications. Once into commissioning operators will find things that don’t work or are not suitable. These can go on a punch list /complaint list or ‘moan list’. These items need to be resolved before commissioning. Not all items get done as some might just be a preference on how things should be done while others are actual problems that need resolution. In one of my workshops,... Read More»

“Success Has A Thousand Fathers But Failure Is An Orphan."
By Morley Selver, P.Eng IPMA B
This article is a continuation of the series on why projects fail. Poor Coordination Of Effort Companies always try to save costs on projects by not going full bore on a project management group. They may have project managers but they are expected to work within a procurement and accounting system set up for buying toilet paper, selling widgets and delaying payments. When you, as a project manager, are in this type of system, your primary goal is to get the project up and running within budget and on schedule while the other players are interested in keeping the facility... Read More»

By Morley Selver, P.Eng IPMA B
Why Do Projects Fail This article is a continuation of why projects fail. Inadequate attention to quality. I have seen quality problems arise from a corporations desire to embrace Auotcad by getting rid of experienced designers and hiring inexperienced CAD operators, to companies suffering because they didn’t get involved in a total quality package. Over my work history I have seen Vendors change from a lack of interest in equipment foundations to being very interested. One project I worked on were four pulp refiners. These were large revolving discs, of several tons, attached to a 10000 hp motor. In the... Read More»

Are Your Metrics Meaningless?
By Patti Gilchrist
Data is an essential corporate asset, critical for the continued success of any business. Data empowers organizations to make critical decisions and drives strategy. Thus, organizations often enthusiastically collect and report a variety and abundance of data, with the mindset that more is better. However, if not managed effectively, this mass of data may not provide enough meaningful or measurable value and may actually produce misleading conclusions. When implementing a system of metric collection and reporting, there are potential roadblocks that can derail the entire process, leading to meaningless metrics. A common cause of error is an inadequate data collection... Read More»

Is It The Triple Constraints or Quadruple Constraints?
By Morley Selver, P.Eng IPMA B
If you are working in project management you have probably heard of the Project Management Triangle or the Triple Constraints. The constraints being scope, schedule, and budget. When managing the project, if one changes we have to look at the other two and see if they change as well. If they have changed then we have to perform some type of control to get the project back in line. My career has been in industry and I am used to the Quadruple or Four Constraints which is more applicable. The four constraints are Scope, Schedule, Budget, and Resources (SSBR) as... Read More»

He Know's What He's Doing!
By Morley Selver, P.Eng IPMA B
At a recent workshop I was going over the Work Breakdown Structure and the need break the scope down into more manageable packages. One of the attendees had a question about one of his projects. He was managing a small project that was upgrading some instrumentation at four separate locations. The design work was supposed to be the same at all four locations. When he got the project it was bundled into one package. The question was, since the work was the same, it did not appear to be any big deal to have one package so, was it necessary... Read More»

Location, Location, Location
By Morley Selver, P.Eng IPMA B
No, I am not talking about real estate, I’m referring to location of the project when it comes to project estimating. I was assembling an estimating module for one of my workshops and got into the factors used in estimating. This article will be about some of the factors we use and why. On a day to day basis we use factors for labour productivity. We also take a labour rate from one area and use a factor to get a rate for another area. For conceptual estimates, we may want to evaluate a project by comparing the installed cost... Read More»

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