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OP Man Chap 17 Project Management

Activities
Project steps that consume resources and/or time.
Activity-on-arrow (AOA)
Network diagram convention in which arrows designate activities
Activity-on-node (AON)
Network diagram convention in which nodes designate activities.
Beta distribution
Used to describe the inherent variability in activity time estimates.
CPM
Critical path method, for planning and coordinating large projects.
Crash
Shortening activity durations.
Critical activities
Activities on the critical path.
Critical path
The longest path; determines expected project duration.
Deterministic
Time estimates that are fairly certain.
Events
The starting and finishing of activities, designated by nodes in the AOA convention.
Independence
Assumption that path duration times are independent of each other; requiring that activity times be independent, and that each activity is on only one path.
Most likely time
The most probable length of time that will be required.
Network (precedence) diagram
Diagram of project activities that shows sequential relationships by use of arrows and nodes.
Optimistic time
The length of time required under optimal conditions.
Path
A sequence of activities that leads from the starting node to the finishing node.
PERT
Program evaluation and review technique, for planning and coordinating large projects.
Pessimistic time
The length of time required under the worst conditions.
Precedence diagram
Diagram of project activities that shows sequential relationships by use of arrows and nodes.
Probabilistic
Estimates of times that allow for variation.
Project champion
A person who promotes and supports a project.
Projects
Unique, one-time operations designed to accomplish a specific set of objectives in a limited time frame.
Slack
Allowable slippage for a path; the difference between the length of a path and the length of the critical path.
Virtual project teams
Some or all of the team members are geographically separated.
Work breakdown structure (WBS)
A hierarchical listing of what must be done during a project.
Work breakdown structure (WBS) purpose
underscored by the fact that the activity list that results serves as the focal point for planning and doing the project
Five phases of a project life cycle?
1. Initiating– outlining the expected costs, benefits, and risks associated with the project
2. Planning- provides details on deliverables, scope, budget, schedule and milestones, performance objectives, resources needed, and plan for handling risks.
3. Executing- actual work carried out
4. Monitoring and Controlling- occurs at the same time as project execution
5. Closing- ends the project
How is project management different from general management?
1. Limited time frame
2. Narrow focus, specific objectives
3. Less bureaucratic
Why is project management used?
1. Special needs that don’t lend themselves to functional management
2. Pressures for new or improved products or services, cost reduction
What are the key project metrics?
1. Time
2. Cost
3. Performance objectives
What are the main tools of project management?
1.Work breakdown structure-initial planning
2. Network diagram- big picture
3. Gantt charts- visual aid
4. Risk management- analyses of potential failures or problems
What are the key decision steps in project management?
1. Deciding which projects to implement
2. Selecting the project manager
3. Selecting the project team
4. Planning and designing the project
5. Managing and controlling project resources
6. Deciding if and when a projects should be terminated
Project champions
a person who promotes and supports a project
Why are project champions used?
Instrumental in facilitating the work of the project manager by “talking up” the project to other managers who might be asked to share resources with the project team
Expected time of an activity formula
te= to+4tm+tp/6

to= Optimistic time
tm= Most likely time (mode)
tp= Pessimistic time

Variance of an activity (squaring the standard deviation)
o^2= [(tp-to)/6]^2 or (tp-to)^2/36

to= Optimistic time
tp= Pessimistic time

Standard deviation of a path
=sqrt(sum of variances of activities on path)
Probability that a given path will be completed in a specified length of time
z= specified time – path mean / path standard deviation
Rule of thumb
If the value of z is 13.00 or more, treat the probability of path completion by the specified time as 100 percent
Crash
shortening activity durations
What extent should a project be crashed?
1. Regular time and crash time estimates for each activity
2. Regular cost and crash cost estimates for each activity
3. A list of activities that are on the critical path
General procedure for crashing is
1. Crash the project one period at a time
2. Crash the least expensive activity that is on the critical path
3. When there are multiple critical paths, find the sum of crashing the least expensive activity on each critical path.
What ways can project management software be helpful?
1. Assign resources
2. Compare project plan versions
3. Evaluate changes
4. Track performance
The Nature of Projects: matrix organization
allows them to integrate the activities of a variety o specialists within a functional framework
In the planning stage, The Project Manager
must prepare a scope statement that spells out the deliverables and goals, determine required skills and resources needed, develop a schedule and budget, and develop plans for managing the scope, the schedule, the budget, and quality risk.
The Project Manager
bears the ultimate responsibility for the success or failure of the project
What is the project manager responsible for?
1. Work
2. Human resources
3. Communications
4. Quality
5. Time
6. Costs
7. Scope
Project management triangle (set of skills)
1. ability to motivate and direct team members
2. make trade-off decisions
3. expedite the work when necessary
4. put out fires
5. monitor time
6. budget
7. technical duties
The Project Management Institute (PMI) administers a globally recognized, examination based professional certification program that maintains T/F
True
Pros of working on projects
1. Potential rewards of being involved in a project
2. dynamic environment that surrounds a project
3. challenge of working under pressure and solving new problems
4. opportunities to meet new people and increase future job opportunities
5. association can be a sign of status
6. inspire team spirit, increase morale, and motivation
Cons of working on projects
1. Interrupt their regular jobs
2. Managers don’t want to lose output of good workers
3. Workers aren’t eager to participate in projects
4. May disrupt friendships and daily routines
5. Risks of being replaced on current job
6. Fear of being associated with an unsuccessful project
What is a Gantt chart?
visual tool for planning and scheduling simple projects ; enables managers to initially schedule project activities and then to monitor progress over time by comparing planned progress to actual progress
By using PERT or CPM, managers are able to obtain
1. graphical display of project activities
2. estimate of how long the project will take
3. indication of which activities are the most critical to timely project completion
4. indication of how long any activity can be delayed without delaying the project.
Main determinant of the way PERT and CPM networks are analyzed and interpreted is whether activity time estimates are _______ or _______.
probabilistic or deterministic
probabilistic
estimates of times that allow for variation
deterministic
time estimates that are fairly certain
Budget Control is a
critical aspect of a project
The goal in evaluating time-cost trade offs is to identify activities that will reduce the sum of the project costs T/F
True
To crash and on the extent of crashing desirable, a manager needs certain information
1. regular time and crash time est. for each activity
2. regular cost and crash cost estimates for each activity
3. list of activities that are on the critical path
Advantages of Using PERT
1. techniques forces the manager to organize and quantify available information and to recognize where additional info is needed
2. provide graphic display of the project and its major activities
3. identify activities that should be watched, slack time
Potential Sources of Error when using PERT
1. omit one or more activities
2. precedence relationships may not all be correct
3. time est. may include fudge factors
4. tendency to focus solely on activities that are on the critical path
Critical Chain Project Management (CCPM)
approach to project management that includes an emphasis on the resources required to execute project tasks
Six-sigma projects
tend to have narrow focus; involve all of the typical elements and requirements of general project management
Virtual project teams
some or all of the team members are geographically separated
Steps in risk management
1. Identify risks
2. Evaluate to determine probability of occurrence and the potential consequences
3. Monitor
One path in a precedence diagram has four activities. If the standard deviation of each activity is 3.0, the path standard deviation is:
The path standard deviation is equal to the square root of the sum of the activity variances, which is the square root of 36: 32 + 32 + 32 + 32 = 36.
sqrt(36)=6
What is the variance of an activity that has these three time estimates? 4-7-10
(10 – 4)2/36 = 36/36 = 1
What is the mean of an activity that has these three time estimates? 3-5-10
(1(3) + 4(5) 1(10))/6 = 33/6 = 5.5
Which one is not a key project metric?
effort
Which one of these
Use of resources.
In PERT, the distribution that is used to describe activity times is
beta
An important assumption in probabilistic computations is
activity times are independent.
If the z value for a path is greater than +3.00, the probability that it will be completed on time is zero. T/F
False
T/F The only candidates for crashing are activities that are on the critical path.
True
A project champion is a project manager who has successfully completed a number of projects.T/F
False
Two activities in a PERT diagram cannot begin with the same node and end with the same node.T/F
True
The standard deviation of a path is equal to the sum of the standard deviations of the path’s activities. T/F
false
A dummy activity is sometimes needed in an activity-on-node diagram. T/f
false
A key feature of the critical chain approach is the use of various buffers.
True
The critical chain approach in project management emphasizes supply chain relationships. t/f
false
Projects typically go through a sequence of stages, referred to as a life cycle. T/f
true
The slack of any path is the difference between its time length and the time length of the critical path. T/f
true
The critical path is the path that has the most activities. T/f
false
An activity that is at the intersection of two paths is a critical activity. t/f
false
An activity may be on more than one path in a network diagram. t/f
true
A path is a sequence of activities in a project that stretches from its beginning to its end. T/f
true
Projects are large, complex sets of tasks that must be completed in a limited timeframe. T/f
false
Activity 7-8 is directly preceded by two activities, activity 5-7 and activity 6-7. Activity 5-7 has an expected time of five and an ES time of eight. Activity 6-7 has an expected time of seven and an ES time of seven. Activity 7-8 has an expected time of nine. The EF for activity 7-8 is:
23
There are four activities on the critical path, and they have standard deviations of 1, 2, 4, and 2 days. The standard deviation of the critical path is:
1^2+2^2+4^2+2^2=25
sqrt(25)=5
Trading the costs of shorter activity times for the benefits of an earlier project completion is called:
crashing.
A node has one entering activity, 2-3, and two leaving activities, 3-4 and 3-5. Given the following, determine the latest starting time (LS) for activity 2-3: EF for 3-4 = 15, EF for 3-5 = 18, latest finish time (LF) for 3-4 = 24, LF for 3-5 = 27, activity times are 2-3 = 4, 3-4 = 6, and 3-5 = 8.
14
All of the following are true about the critical path, except:
the critical path is the path that has the greatest number of activities.
Which of the following is not a form of risk reduction in project management?
scenario analysis
Given this information about activity 3-4: ES = 10, EF = 15, LS = 16, and LF = 21, we can determine that the amount of slack associated with the activity is:
6
According to the Stevenson textbook, which of the following is not typically a phase of a project life cycle?
Defining
Which of the following would probably not benefit from the use of PERT/CPM for scheduling and planning?
Cutting lumber at a sawmill.
What is the variance of an activity that has these three time estimates? 4-7-10
1.00

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