Very Simple Project Management 3

We’ve covered the simple definition of project, we’ve introduced the project triangle, and gave you a sense of time and project management.  In this third post Broadcast Newsroom Computing looks at cost – another side of the project triangle.

 

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Typically we all think of cost in terms of money.  We are correct do so because everything has a monetary cost.  Cost is important and it’s directly tied to the foundation of the project triangle.  Cost is most dependent and controlling in project management.  We’re attempting a very simple explanation of a very complex science.  Cost is extremely important, simply put.

Remember in the last post I introduced the concept of elasticity.  Cost is often the most difficult of the three sides and causes the most reaction when elasticity comes into effect. 

Now that you are sufficiently cautioned about cost.  Let’s look at it in simple terms.  Cost is:

  • funds
  • people
  • equipment
  • materials
  • utilities
  • facilities
  • any resource needed to complete the scope or work

How much money or time you spend are part of the cost but the whole can be deceiving.  Let’s say a colleague agrees to prepare a master slide for your presentation.  Simple and easy and no expense.  Creating the master slide is a task involved in your assignment or project and while you may have avoided a direct cost there was one.  How much time did your colleague invest at the cost of something else?  What tools and resources did they deploy that may have been used elsewhere? Everything costs.  The project manager has to determine the cost to their express goal.

So just keeping and maintaining a budget is the wrong way to control costs.  A PM handles everything that affects the budget.  That’s cost.  If you really want to see what a science project cost is then check out this online eBook.  You’ll see why KISS is what you like.

In the next post of Very Simple Project Management BNC examines the foundation of the project management triangle and the raison d’être. 

 

James Rowe

Rowe and Company

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