Description the aires corporation is highly desirous of implementing
The Aires Corporation is highly desirous of implementing a new time tracking system to help automate their project control system, accounting and account receivables. The time tracking system is designed to allow employees and subcontractors to charge hours against project control accounts and to help prevent mischarging. The system is called Chronos and it is written in a modern database management system, which is the preferred database platform by Aires. The project is to integrate the time card system to project management, accounting and accounts receivable/payables. The Director of Information Technology (IT) has assigned an integration project to you as project manager; in addition, the director assigned a senior systems engineer to be the project’s technical lead.
The Software Engineer has a team of five (5) developers that will work on the project; the Director has asked for a project management plan to be briefed to the IT senior leadership team, which is in a few days. Your mission is to construct a Microsoft Project proposal to help prepare for the briefing. You are also to construct a quick Total Project Cost (TPC) cross reference work sheet to verify the accuracy of the MS Project effort.
As project manager, you meet with your development team and determine that the interface will be composed of input screens, interface processes, and verification reports for the integration of the time tracking system to the other legacy financial systems. The Developers have indicated that they would like to receive training on the Chronos system to help them with the database structures to facilitate the integration. The training would have to occur before any other activity could evolve. The team is highly adept to the other systems being used and the integration risk is mainly centered on Chronos Time Tracking system since it is new to the organization. The team has decided that the plan should be oriented on Design, Programming, Quality Assurance, Rework, Documentation, User Training, and Production. Lastly, the team recommended support from the Chronos vendor to address technical questions they might have during development of the interface. As project manager, you note that there are special stakeholders and decide to involve support from Finance and Project Management to address process and procedure questions that might arise during the design, development and testing of the interface. The outcome of the planning meeting with the entire project team is represented in the list under scope and schedule.
Scope and Schedule
The following preliminary WBS was developed as a result of your meeting:
WBS Description Scope Units Duration Relationships
1. Chronos Interface 1 Interface Summary
1.1. Design 1 Spec Summary
1.1.1. Screens 5 Screens 8 1.1.1->1.1.3
1.1.2. Interfaces 3 Process Algorithms 10 1.1.2->1.1.3
1.1.3. Reports 6 Reports 5 1.1.3->1.1.4, 1.1.3->1.1.7
1.1.4. Engineering Support 20 Issues 35 1.1.4->1.3 FF
1.1.5. Database 7 Tables 15 1.1.5->1.1.1, 1.1.5->1.1.2, 1.1.5->1.2.4
1.1.6. Technical Training 1 Class 5 1.1.6->1.1.5
1.1.7. Design Done Milestone 1.1.7->1.3
1.2.1. Screens 5 Screens 10 1.2.1->1.2.3, 1.2.1->1.3 SS
1.2.2. Interfaces 3 Processes 20 1.2.2->1.2.3
1.2.3. Reports 6 Reports 10 1.2.3->1.2.5
1.2.4. Database Systems 7 Tables 15 1.2.4->1.2.1, 1.2.4->1.2.2
1.2.5. Programming Done Milestone 1.2.5->1.5
1.3. Quality Assurance 21 Tests 40 1.3->1.4 SS, 1.3->1.5
1.4. Rework (Bug Fixes) ? Issues 40 1.4->1.5
1.5.1. Reference Guide 1 Manual 10 1.5.1->1.5.2
1.5.2. Training manuals 1 Manual 10 1.5.2->1.5.3
1.5.3. Manuals Done Milestone 1.5.3->1.6
1.6. User Training 1 Class 5 1.6->1.7
1.7. Production 1 Interface Milestone
Resources & Cost
After a discussion, the team decided that the project had sufficient detail in terms of scope and schedule. Resources would be loaded against the top summary level activity only for the entire duration of the project. So the resource and cost estimate would be estimated at the, “1 Chronos Interface” level. The following resources will be applied in terms of labor across the project:
Heads Resource Name Resource Description Direct Rate
1.00 L1PRJM Project Manager $75/hr
1.00 L2SWE Software Engineer $60/hr
5.00 L3DEVL Software Developers $40/hr
0.50 L4CONS Chronos Consultant $200/hr
0.25 L5FCON Finance Support Staff $85/hr
0.25 L5PRJM Project Management Support $85/hr
The finance department provided the labor codes above and the burden rates below. Finance provided guidance that the Chronos Consultant is a subcontractor an only the G&A rate applies. All other rates associated to labor are to be fully burdened with the following rate:
Burden Description Rate
Direct Labor Overhead (DLO) 80%
General & Administrative 20%
Since this is a capital project, there is no profit or fee inclusion in the burden rate. Capital projects are financially sponsored by the host organization so the total rate is discounted by both profit and fee; the company will only pay expense rates. usually, all burden rates come from Finance and are derived from the financial statements. What is the multiplier and what are the final rates for each category? You will need to know the final rates before entering them into MS Project.
Other Project Costs
The director has notified you that the IT Department has procured a special server for this project to allow for the development and testing to occur in a non-production environment. The server is equipment and is to be included as an investment on the project. The full amount of the service through installation is $29,234. The server cost is not allocated against the activities, but is to be included in the total project cost.
Project Start & Calendar
You are to assume a project start date of 1/1/2011. The project has not started yet, and the calendar is a five (5) day work week.
The director has stipulated a Management Reserve to be imposed on the total project budget of 10%.
How to do the assignment:
1. Enter MS Project and change all time scales to Quarter for Second Tear, and Monthly for bottom tier. Change all views including resource views to quarterly and monthly timescale. Why?
2. Set the project start date to the project start set herein. Also, put in the status date as none or to 12/31/10. Why?
3. Go to Gantt View and insert the following custom fields: Scope, Actual, Units. Scope and Actual fields will be numeric and will require a text field. The Unit field will also have to be a text field and will be a text format. We inserted fields for the Week 2 assignment. Also include the WBS number or Outline Number and make sure they align to the task list above in terms of numbering. What is a summary activity? What is a milestone? How many milestones does an activity have when there is a duration greater than zero?
4. You will need the top level summary task to enter in resources and you will need to get the duration to create a quick Total Project Cost in the work book provided. You will load resources only against that one task; however, you need to create the schedule correctly to derive the overall summary activity duration. This can only be done by correctly entering in the project activities correctly with the proper summary levels. Enter in the activities, make sure every activity is appropriately identified as a milestone and summary task. Enter in the scope for each activity and then enter the relationships. When entering relationships, how does MS Project differ from the list above?
5. Set all activities to Fixed Duration and turn off the Effort Driven on the Activity Detail screen on the Advanced tab.
6. Insert the early start and finish, late start and finish, free slack, and total slack fields on the Gantt View; then format the Gantt view to show the critical path. How can you identify critical path activities?
7. You should now know the durations of all summary tasks and you can begin to calculate the TPC. Before showing the TPC, you will have to calculate the fully burdened rates for all resources. use the workbook to calculate the final rates for all resources.
8. Once the fully burdened rates are know, enter the task name and all resources into the TPC spreadsheet in the Workbook. Enter the appropriate rates; enter the head count and the spreadsheet should calculate the hours as all resources will be loaded across the entire duration of the project, which is given to you by the top-level summary cost. You will use the spreadsheet as a cross reference in what you input into MS Project.
9. Don’t forget the project server that was procured; this cost represents the other project costs the IT department did outside the project.
10. Enter resources into the Resource Screen in MS Project. All labor resources are represented as work resources. Ensure that the right rates are applied. The Other Charges and Management Reserve (MR) are depicted as costs and will transpire respectively at the start and end of the summary level.
11. Load resources against the top-level activity. The numbers should match exactly to the workbook. What is the purpose of MR and Other Charges?