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Finding the Right Fit with Earned Value

When Earned Value (EV) is mentioned, many people automatically think: mega-projects, extremely arduous, cumbersome reporting, rigidity, and too expensive. However, the basic concepts of EV can and should be applied to most projects. The key to using an Earned Value Management System (EVMS) across all of a company’s projects is scalability.  Particular projects will often have stringent earned value requirements which will require a more rigid set of processes, procedures, and documentation. However, using full blown certified EV process and procedures can be burdensome for smaller, quicker, lower risk projects.  To deal with this, a company can develop a simpler, more flexible, set of processes and procedures for use with smaller blog 13_1projects, a concept commonly called Earned Value Lite. A project is still broken down by a WBS into manageable pieces, which are defined with a specific scope, schedule, and budget. This information is set as a target, and then managed toward the target, as is usual with Earned Value systems. Managers look at what was planned to be done, how much has really been done, and the cost of that work compared to the budget. Areas such as formal documentation, change management, work authorizations, level of tracking and reporting can be adjusted to a less rigorous process than might be required in a more traditional system. This allows for a more basic, cost effective approach with smaller or simpler projects. EV can be value added to much more than just megaprojects!

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Cherié Chance

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