Review Questions

1. You are a project manager for an IT

project that' s in the controlling phase. A vendor has notified you that a server you require for a given task in the project, a task that' s on the critical path, will not be able to ship for two weeks. What is your course of action?

A. Set up a meeting with stakeholders. Explain the situation; ask for an extension to the project deadline.

B. Meet with the vendor; see if you can shorten the delay. Set up a meeting with stakeholders. Explain the situation; ask for an extension to the project deadline.

C. Meet with the vendor; see if you can shorten the delay. Set up a meeting with stakeholders. Explain the situation; ask for an extension to the project deadline. Get extension approved through project sponsor.

D. Meet with the vendor; see if you can shorten the delay. Set up a meeting with stakeholders. Explain the situation; ask for an extension to the project deadline. Get extension approved through project sponsor. Revise project plan.

2. Your project has taken a serious turn for the worse. While your project team is working its heart out to meet deadlines, it appears that the executive project sponsor has lost all enthusiasm for the project. You're not sure why. The project is near death, and if you cannot clear up this problem, you're close to the point where you're going to have to kill the project. What steps should you take?

A. Set up a meeting with the executive project sponsor. See if you can determine why the problem exists.

B. Set up a meeting with the executive project sponsor. See if you can determine why the problem exists. If you can't get anywhere with the executive project sponsor, try to get an ally or someone with influence on the sponsor to get at the heart of the matter. Meet with the stakeholders to apprise them of the situation—maybe you can get a new sponsor appointed. If you can t get anywhere, you re better off killing the project.

C. Set up a meeting with the executive project sponsor. See if you can determine why the problem exists. If you can t get anywhere with the executive project sponsor, try to get an ally or someone with influence on the sponsor to get at the heart of the matter.

P. Set up a meeting with the executive project sponsor. See if you can determine why the problem exists. If you can t get anywhere with the executive project sponsor, try to get an ally or someone with influence on the sponsor to get at the heart of the matter. If you can t get anywhere, you re better off killing the project.

3. You are a project manager for an IT

project that' s in the controlling phase. It turns out that a task on the critical path must utilize a hardware component that is much higher in cost than you had originally budgeted. This represents a serious budget overrun in your project, and there' s little you can do about it. What is your course of action?

A. Meet with the hardware vendor; see if you can get the cost reduced. Set up a meeting with stakeholders. Explain the situation; ask for an expansion to the project budget. Get expansion approved through project sponsor. Revise project plan.

B. Set up a meeting with the executive project sponsor. Explain the situation, ask for an expansion to the project budget. Revise project plan. Advise stakeholders.

C. Meet with the hardware vendor; see if you can get the cost reduced. Set up a meeting with the executive project sponsor. Explain the situation; ask for an expansion to the project budget. Revise project plan.

P. Meet with the hardware vendor; see if you can get the cost reduced. Set up a meeting with stakeholders. Explain the situation; ask for an extension to the project deadline. Get extension approved through stakeholders. Revise project plan. Advise project sponsor.

4. The cost variance (CV) is defined as the difference between a task' s estimated and actual cost. What does a negative CV indicate?

A. Behind schedule

B. Under budget

C. Ahead of schedule

P. Over budget

5. Lorraine is working on a project task that you' ve budgeted to take 10 hours of her time, at a cost of $150 per hour or (not including overhead) $1,500. The task she s working on requires that she install a T1 card in a new fax server and test it to make sure it' s running. You budgeted $14,000 for the T1 card, and you ' ve been invoiced $13,800. Lorraine comes to you at the end of 10 hours to tell you that she thinks she is going to need one more hour to finish up the work on the task. If all goes as she says it will, what will be the overall status of this task? (Select all that apply.)

A. Well under budget

B. Marginally under budget

C. Marginally over budget

P. Well over budget

E. Marginally behind schedule

F. Well behind schedule

6. Lorraine is working on a project task that you' ve budgeted to take 10 hours of her time, at a cost of $150 per hour or (not including overhead) $1,500. The task she s working on requires that she install a T1 card in a new fax server and test it to make sure it' s running. You budgeted $14,000 for the T1 card, and you ' ve been invoiced $13,800. Lorraine comes to you at the end of 10 hours to tell you that she thinks she is going to need one more hour to finish up the work on the task. If all goes as she says it will, what will be the schedule performance index (SPI) of this task?

7. One of your senior network engineers,

Marty, is absolutely insistent that the vendor who's supplying your routers is "all wet" when it comes to a facet of a router that he's been tasked to install. However, when you consult with the systems engineers who work for the vendor, they tell you that Marty has misunderstood the way the product works and that it works the way they've advertised it. How do you handle this problem?

A. Call the vendor and Marty to a meeting. Sit back and watch them hash it out.

B. Call the vendor and Marty to a meeting. Act as arbitrator in an effort to get at the root of what the problem might be.

C. Arrange to have some of the vendor's engineers meet Marty on site to work through a sample configuration on one of the routers. That way if he's right, they can see what he's talking about; if he's wrong, he'll see why.

D. Tell Marty to listen to what the vendor has to say—after all, they invented it.

8. Which of the following items will require the attention of the executive project sponsor as you work through the controlling phase of your project? (Select all that apply.)

A. Materials coming in under budget

B. Scope expanded due to unforeseen circumstances

C. Some tasks way over completion date, requiring scope modification

D. Some tasks way over completion date, but manageable

9. Which of the financial variables represent ratios? (Select all that apply.)

A.

BCWS

B.

ACWP

C.

CV

D.

SV

E.

CPI

F.

SPI

G.

BCWP

H.

TCuI

10. Why is it beneficial to conduct an earned value analysis on a given project? (Select all that apply.)

A. Tells you how close to the end of the project you really are

B. Tells you whether you have enough money in the budget to finish the project

C. Tells you which of the tasks are in the danger zone and must be immediately attended to

P. Tells you whether there is enough time left in the schedule to get the project done on time

11. In a long-term project that will span many weeks, which of the following project elements do you not need to monitor on a weekly basis? (Select all that apply.)

A. Check the project ' s scope

B. Analyze variances

C. Check the project s schedule

P. Supply vendor reports

E. Check the status of project deliverables

D. Handle scope changes

G. Run finance reports

H. Resolve open issues

I. Report project status

12. You are a project manager for an IT project that' s well underway. You' re in the controlling phase. One task on the critical path is going to come in well beyond the schedule you had originally planed for. While there is no budget overrun, there's little you can do about the schedule overrun. What is your course of action?

A. Notify the stakeholders.

B. Notify the stakeholders and executive project sponsor.

C. Notify the stakeholders and executive project sponsor. Obtain permission to proceed.

D. Notify the stakeholders and executive project sponsor. Obtain permission to proceed. Implement Plan B if permission is not obtained.

13. In order to begin calculating financial management variables in your project management software, you must first do this.

A. Save your work.

B. Save your work with a baseline.

C. Schedule your tasks.

D. Obtain project sponsor sign-off.

14. You ' ve come to the realization that the project you ' re currently involved in is going nowhere fast. You' ve run into a technological brick wall—one that your project team has worked extremely hard to try to overcome, but that has produced failure after failure. What should be your next steps?

A. Notify the stakeholders. Kill the project.

B. Notify the stakeholders. Crash the project.

C. Notify the stakeholders and the executive project sponsor. Crash the project.

P. Notify the stakeholders and the executive project sponsor. Kill the project.

15. You ' re working on a project in which you believe you could easily and quickly finish a critical task simply by allotting to it some more team members (who aren' t currently working on anything). What is this technique called?

A. Crashing the project

B. Pushing the project

C. Killing the project

P. Flying the project

16. What are some of the elements of good open-issues tracking? (Select all that apply.)

A. Listing open issues

B. Tracking open issues

C. Assigning an arbitrator to open issue resolution

D. Resolution open issues

E. Appointing someone outside the project team to manage open issues.

17. You ' re the project manager for an IT project that' s well underway. You 've recently become aware of a significant budget increase in an area of your project. What are some of the details that you must document in order to prepare stakeholders for the news of this overrun? (Select all that apply.)

A. Reason for the increase

B. Size of the increase

C. Date of this increase

D. Overall budget increase

E. Stakeholders involved

18. When dealing with an executive project sponsor who has lost enthusiasm for the project, what is the one thing that you must try to avoid when attempting to rectify the problem?

A. Enlarging the scope

B. Creating negative impact

Answers 1.

C. Adding more hours to the project

P. Taking money away from the budget Which parties or individuals need to be apprised of a project s status? (Select all that apply.)

A.

End users

B.

Project sponsor(s)

C.

Project stakeholders

D.

Customers

E.

Vendors

D.

Team members

Which project components will be involved in your variance analysis procedures? (Select all that apply.)

A. Resource time expenditures

B. Vendor response times

C. Elapsed duration of activities

D. Dollar expenditures

E. Contingency funds

Dirst, you should meet with the vendor to see whether you can negotiate a shorter delay. Working with tasks on the critical path allows for very little room for finagling other tasks without consulting with the project sponsor and stakeholders. Next, you should meet with the stakeholders to apprise them of the delay. If they' re OK with the deadline extension, you should modify the project plan and obtain formal sign-off from the project sponsor. B

You start by going directly to the executive project sponsor to try to get at the heart of what's going on. Careful communication techniques are required so that you don't make the problem worse than it already is. If you can't get anywhere, you should seek out an ally or an influence that might be able to find out what's going on. Barring that, it may be worth your while to take the matter to the stakeholders, though they'll probably have little power to change the sponsor of the project. Finally, if things continue to deteriorate, you'll have to pull the plug on the project.

You should first see what you can do to knock the price down. Next, meet with the sponsor and try to get an expansion to the budget. One of two things will happen: The sponsor will either approve the expansion or try to brainstorm with you regarding workarounds. If you get the expansion approved, modify the project plan. Keep the stakeholders under advisement on this issue, but they aren©t a crucial step in the problem©s resolution.

Since we're dealing with the CV here, we're looking at budget figures. A negative CV means that you've spent more money than you had budgeted, thus for the task you're obtaining a variance on, you're over budget.

You actually have to remember that you're going to track your time estimates (and their associated costs) in a different area than your materials estimates. While you came in under budget in the area of materials, you came in over budget in the area of the time needed to complete the task. You can't necessarily borrow the extra 150 bucks from the T1 card's savings, because the two pots of money are different. So you're under budget in one area and over budget in another.

The cost performance index (CPI) and schedule performance index (SPI) are essentially the same in their philosophy. You take the actual cost or hours budgeted then divide by the actual to come up with the index. A number less than 1.00 means you' re over budget or behind schedule, whereas a number over 1.00 means you' re under budget or ahead of schedule. Since Lorraine has had to increase her hours to 11 for the task you calculate the SPI by dividing 10 / 11 to arrive at an SPI of 0.90. (As I said, you may not see any of these on the test, but it is something CompTIA wants you to be aware of and it aligns with objective 3.7.)

Having personally been through this kind of dilemma, I feel for you if you have ever gone through this yourself. The best way to handle this is to get some vendor SEs in a room with your engineer and let them work through a sample configuration. Hey, companies have been wrong before, and your guy might have a point. Or, if he' s mature enough, he ' l l see what they ' re talking about and will have learned a great lesson about configuring this particular router. You should be there with them to make sure that the fisticuffs and name-calling are kept to a minimum.

The project sponsor needs to know when resources are impacted by a shortfall in the project—whether those resources are time, material, or person-power. If you can manage some tasks that are "way" over completion date without involving the sponsor (meaning you don 't have to modify the project' s scope), then by all means do so. In any event, you should notify the stakeholders at their next meeting.

An index (ratio) is different than a variance. With a variance, you' re calculating exactly how much a budgeted item differs from actual. With an index, you' re dividing one by the other

to come up with either a positive or negative number, in order to assess whether you re ahead or behind. The cost variance (CV) and schedule variance (SV) are simple subtractions. The cost performance index (CPI), schedule performance index (SPI), and to-complete performance index (TCPI) are ratios. The budgeted cost of work scheduled (BCWS), actual cost of work performed (ACWP), and budgeted cost of work performed (BCWP) are earned value components used in the above variance and index calculations.

Running an earned value analysis will tell you whether you have enough money to finish the project and whether you can bring the project in on time. It' l l also pinpoint those tasks that are in the danger zone—those that you ' d better immediately attend to. Note that earned value analysis probably isn't necessary for the average IT project that has a small scope.

Generally, supplying vendor reports and running reports for the finance office aren't things you' l l do on a weekly basis. Vendor reports will occur irregularly as vendors deliver materials, and finance reports will generally happen on a monthly basis.

Remember to communicate, communicate, communicate! Let the stakeholders know what' s going on. Always notify the executive sponsor when there' s an overrun of this nature. This is especially true in this case because the task is on the critical path and therefore affects many other tasks. Obtain sign-off in order to proceed, and be prepared with a backup plan in the event you' re not given the approval you need.

A baseline establishes that you' ve keyed in your tasks, their durations, and the materials and hours costs. Setting a baseline in your project management software allows you to

begin calculating your financial management variables and performed earned value analysis. P

You ve reached the unfortunate and inevitable time when you must kill the project. The executive project sponsor is actually the one who will make the decision to kill the project, so you d better have your facts and evidence down pat. Generally, executives are going to be inclined to go down with the ship, so killing a project won 't happen lightly. Taking this risk also might find you replaced as a PM so that the executive sponsor can give it one more "old college try" before coming to the realization himself that the project is dead. Unfortunately, lots of executives don' t see this reality as quickly as you might—so be prepared for a rough ride.

Crashing the project is a slang term for putting more people on a facet of a project so that you can complete a task more quickly and un-stall a stalled component.

Open issues are those issues that surround a project that' s underway. Issues can be raised by stakeholders, the project sponsor, yourself, or your team members. You must be very diligent about maintaining an issues tracking system that allows people to view the open issues and allows those who are working on an issue to post resolutions.

When you' re faced with such a budget overrun, it ' s important that you figure out the reason for the increase, estimate the size of the increase, and especially pay attention to the increase in the overall budget that this overrun represents. Then identify the stakeholders that are involved and present the overrun to them.

It' s vital that you communicate with this executive in such a way that you don' t further damage their enthusiasm level.

The project sponsor(s), stakeholders, customers, and team members must be apprised of the project ' s status. A vendor is someone who sells you supplies for a project, so it s not really necessary that they' re on the status notification list. A user who is a customer would be informed, but other users don't need to hear until the project is near completion (as training gets set to begin).

You need to perform variance analysis procedures on the amount of time that resources are involved in an activity as well as the time an activity takes to complete as well as the dollars spent on an activity.

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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