Analyzing Project Variances

A variance is the difference between what was planned and what was experienced. No one likes to hear that variances are in the project, but ignoring variances can only lead to more risks, more troubles, and more headaches. Cost variances can eat into the project budget, which in turn creates new risks, such as running out of cash, having to choose a lower grade of materials, or even removing deliverables from the scope. Cost variances can also force the project manager to have to ask for more funds, which is not a pleasant experience.

Schedule variances are just as deadly. Delays in the project work, vendor deliveries, and time estimates that were too optimistic can eat into the management reserve and consume the project's float. These risks can create new risks. Consider the risks inherent to the schedule variance responses:

• Crashing the project

• Fast-tracking the project

• Overworking the project team

• Rushing the project work

• Rushing through quality control and quality audits to regain time

Project Management Made Easy

Project Management Made Easy

What you need to know about… Project Management Made Easy! Project management consists of more than just a large building project and can encompass small projects as well. No matter what the size of your project, you need to have some sort of project management. How you manage your project has everything to do with its outcome.

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