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Friday, December 9, 2011

Monitoring And Controlling the Project

The following are the important themes that you must remember from the PMI Perspective with respect to the Monitoring & Controlling Phase of the Project.

1. Project changes should be expected, planned for, and well managed.
2. Out-of-scope work (gold-plating) adds no value to the project and should be avoided.
3. Scope verification ensures that the work product is formally accepted. Quality assurance ensures the correctness of the work product.
4. Lessons learned are important resources for planning and future projects. Maintaining the lessons learned during project control is important.
5. All change-control systems should include guidance on the following factors;
o How to influence the factors that cause change
o How to detect when a change has occurred
o How to obtain agreement on a change activity
o How to manage the change
6. Earned value is the preferred project controlling and performance reporting technique.
7. Cost variance (CV) = earned value – actual costs (EV – AC)
8. Cost Performance Index (CPI) = earned value / actual costs (EV / AC)
9. Schedule variance (SV) = earned value – planned value (EV – PV)
10. Schedule Performance Index (SPI) = earned value / planned value (EV / PV)
11. Estimate at completion (EAC) = budget at completion (BAC) / CPI
12. Estimate to complete (ETC) = EAC - actual costs (AC)
13. Variances are always “earned value” minus something. Performance indexes are always “earned value” divided by something.
14. Performance indexes of less than 1 are unfavorable. Nearer the index is to ‘1’ the better.
15. Practically speaking maintaining the SPI or CPI at exactly ‘1’ is very difficult. Most practical managers expect to maintain it around 0.95 to 1.05
16. Quality control focuses on measurement. Quality assurance focuses on all the planned and systematic quality activities within the project.
17. The key quality control tools and techniques are control charts, pareto analysis (80/20 rule), Ishikawa diagrams (cause and effect, fishbone), trend analysis, and statistical sampling.
18. Preventing a risk event is always preferred to mitigating a risk event.
19. A key goal of effective risk management is to have a response plan ready (that is, a mitigation strategy) to be implemented if the risk event occurs.
20. Risk management may require re-planning, developing alternate strategies, and re-baselining the project, depending on the severity of the new risk that was identified.

Exam Trivia:
Gold Plating or Value Addition is something that large IT company’s expect its employees to do as a mandatory activity during project work. But, from PMI’s perspective Gold Plating is prohibited and project managers and team members are not supposed to do stuff that is not part of the Project Scope. Though you might be asked to do so by your management and you may do it as part of your work, you must not select that as a choice in the exam.

Other PMI Themes:

General PMI Themes
Project Framework
Project Initiation
Project Planning
Project Execution
Project Closure
Ethics & Professional Responsibility


  1. Hi,
    Fantastic points ! Thanks.Very useful for anybody giving PMP Exam.
    One small correction: ETC's formula should be ETC = EAC - AC.

    1. Thank you Anonymous for your feedback and really appreciate the same. The typo error is now corrected. Thanks again for pointing it out.



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