Examples of Change Requests and Change Processing

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Integrated Project Management
By Earl Hall, Juliane Johnson
Table of Contents
Chapter 13.  Project Change


The following are examples of project change requests and their processing:

  1. The Project: Build a house on a designated lot according to its architectural plans.

    The Change: Add a bedroom over the garage the house construction is already in process.

    The Action: The change committee takes a look at the new architectural drawings and notes that no additional skills are needed for the project team to make the addition. If the project has not passed the framing stage, no work has been done that will need to be removed or changed. The change committee directs the project manager to call together the necessary members of the project team to revise the project plan in order to accommodate the change. This change does not require any masonry or plumbing work. However, it will require extending the work of most of the other teams, but it will not require them to perform tasks different from those already scheduled.

    The project manager convenes the project team, minus the masonry and plumbing task leaders. Beginning at the task level, the project manager leads the team in expanding the project to accommodate the change. Because only familiar efforts are involved in adding the change, it can be expected that replanning will be a short process and that the project can proceed with the extended time and cost requirements in an orderly fashion. The most serious problem may be scheduling the availability of the skilled craftsmen to take on additional effort. The availability of the skilled craftsmen may cause a significant delay in completing the project. If so, the customer must be informed. The customer has the choice of accepting the delay or directing the project manager to finish the project as originally planned. A new project to add the room can be considered later if the change is not made at this time.

    This last consideration is a familiar one in facing project changes. Is it better to add a change, achieve a desired improved outcome, and fold the work into the project now or finish the original project and add on the improvement at a greater cost later? The basic mantra of project management is, "Finish the project, do the enhancements later." The rationale is that finishing the project brings satisfactory closure and provides a useful product. Adding enrichments to the project may "never end," and the product may be flawed in the process.

  2. The Project: Develop a software package for a "modern" PC used by a small business that will process income and expenses and produce a monthly profit and loss statement and a balance sheet.

    The Change: Add a payroll processing system to the package.

    The Action: The change committee takes a look at the new requirement statement and asks for explanations from the customer's representative and the accounting subject matter expert. These specialists explain how a payroll system is processed, using paper and a pencil. The team notes that an accounting team and an IT systems analyst will need to work together to precisely define the project outcomes and to lay out the basic system for achieving these outcomes. There is a desirable interface with the originally planned accounting package, and the same people who can use one can use the other. However, the payroll system is fundamentally a new project. The change committee recommends to the customer that the development of a payroll system to go along with the original accounting package be treated as a separate basic project. The two basic projects can proceed as two units of a major project, and a major project manager can be appointed to lead the two basic project managers in developing the interfaces.

  3. The Project: Develop a sheet metal cleaning machine that will remove all dust and oil from 4' by 10' sheet metal sheets up to 1/4' thick before they are processed in the presses.

    The Change: Add the capability of removing rust and corrosion in the cleaning process.

    The Action: The change committee convenes with the subject matter experts on rust and corrosion. They learn that the basic cleaning process and the mechanical design may remain the same, but that the degreaser liquid used will have to be supplemented with another solvent, and perhaps, an added brushing process. The project manager will have to reconvene the project team and add a solvent subject matter expert. This new team will create a fundamental product redesign one that can use some of the already developed parts. This is a new project that uses some of the parts the old project has created. The team will be able to move faster in the redesign and development planning because they have covered much of this information before.

    It will be possible to arrive at a rough cost estimate for the new product because the original plan will support an extrapolation of the time and cost estimates. It is essentially, however, a new project whose time and cost cannot be confidently determined until the new project plan is completed. The customer will receive this information and will make the decision regarding whether or not to implement the change. Until the customer makes this decision, in most cases, the project team will continue with the original project plan.


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    Integrated Project Management
    Integrated Project Management
    ISBN: 0071466266
    EAN: 2147483647
    Year: 2005
    Pages: 190

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