Interpret the Earned Value Figures

So what are you looking at when you see those earned value calculations? Are they good numbers or bad numbers? Or are they just right? The following list can help you interpret, in a general way, the calculations you see in your Earned Value report.

Budgeted Cost of Work Scheduled (BCWS). The cost amount originally defined for a task, up to the status date. By this date, this much of the budget should have been spent. Review this amount in conjunction with the BAC and EAC.

Budgeted Cost of Work Performed (BCWP). The baseline cost of a task, multiplied by the calculated percent complete, up to the status date. Based on the amount of work reported by this date, this much of the budget should have been spent. Compare this amount with the BCWS and ACWP. Actual Cost of Work Performed (ACWP). The costs incurred from the actual amount of work done on a task and any fixed costs accrued for that task. Based on the amount of work reported by this date, this much budget has actually been spent. Compare this amount with the BCWS and BCWP

Schedule Variance (SV). The result of subtracting the BCWS from the BCWP Even though it's called "Schedule Variance," the variance really calculated is cost resulting from schedule considerations. This dollar amount indicates the difference between the baseline costs for scheduled tasks and actual progress reported on those tasks. A positive SV means the task is ahead of schedule in terms of cost. A negative SV means the task is behind schedule in terms of cost. An SV of $0.00 means the task is exactly on schedule in terms of cost. Although SV does not necessarily specify whether you're under or over budget, it can be an indicator that budget should be looked at more closely. Compare this figure with CV and VAC.

Cost Variance (CV). The result of subtracting the ACWP from the BCWP If the number is positive, the actual costs are less than what was budgeted. This dollar amount indicates the difference between the baseline and actual costs for tasks. A positive CV means the task is currently under budget. A negative CV means the task is currently over budget. A CV of $0.00 means the task is exactly on budget. Compare this figure with SV and VAC.

Estimate At Completion (EAC). The amount calculated from the ACWP BCWP and the Cost Performance Index (CPI), resulting in a composite forecast total of costs for the task upon completion. Also known as Forecast At Completion (FAC). This dollar amount indicates the current best guess of what this task will cost by the time it's finished. Compare this amount with the BAC.

Budgeted At Completion (BAC). The cost for the task as planned. This is exactly the same as the baseline cost, which includes assigned resource costs and any fixed costs for the task.

Variance At Completion (VAC). The result of subtracting EAC from BAC. A negative VAC indicates that the forecasted cost for the task is currently over budget. A positive VAC indicates that the forecasted cost for the task is currently under budget. A VAC of $0.00 indicates that the task is right on budget. Compare this figure with SV and CV.

For more detailed information, including the underlying calculations, about earned value analysis, see "Analyzing Progress and Costs Using Earned Value" on page 401.

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.

Get My Free Ebook


Post a comment