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Discussion Week 4
Please answer the following discussion question with 250-300 words and include references, also used
the 2 student discussions below as example to make sure it is done right. Then write a response to each
of the other students (100 words each) be positive, what you agree with or not and what you like about
it.
Discussion question ( min 250 words include references)
After carefully reviewing the lecture materials, assigned reading(s),
and relevant resources, please respond to the following:
Metrics and key performance indicators (KPIs) are often confused, but
the clear difference is KPIs are the key measures that will have the most
impact in moving your organization forward. They clearly articulate and
provide insight into what your organization needs to measure and
achieve to reach your long-term objectives.
Metrics also track and provide data on your organization’s standard
business processes but again are not the most important metrics your
organization needs to measure, monitor, and perform against to make
progress against your strategic plan.
Review the course materials for this week and provide five KPI’s and
five metrics (with a detailed explanation) for a project or organization
you work with.
In addition, I want you to consider something discussed in your
Goldratt book — the concept of padding. We all know what that is. It
might be padding your own budget or your organizational budget to
allow a little “wiggle room” — a little “just in case…” money. It might be
thinking the task your boss asked you to do will take four weeks, but
you tell him or her that you think it will take five weeks (“just in
case…”). Make a case for whether you thinking padding is okay, or
whether it is not. Explain why you think people pad budgets and
timelines (and other things). It’s really not the truth, is it? I expect to
see disagreement here! Let’s make it lively (but polite).
Note: Please post your original response by Thursday and respond
to at least 2 peers by Sunday. In addition, follow APA guidelines
and cite at least 1 resource to support your discussions; be sure to
include a reference section at the end of your post.
Video 1 https://youtu.be/NCta6j5_FdM
Video 2 https://youtu.be/ic1Iw11eCxg
Video 3 https://youtu.be/pt62rCVgtUU
Student 1 Doug
Review the course materials for this week and provide five KPI’s and five metrics (with
a detailed explanation) for a project or organization you work with.
In addition, I want you to consider something discussed in your Goldratt book — the
concept of padding. We all know what that is.
Key Process Indicators (KPI) are very valuable to every business and project. They provide a
way to achieve success through a metered method (Alsadeq, I. & Hakam, T. F. 2010) It can
assure team members are working to the same goals. They are defined per project and may
not be identical from one to another.
Five KPI examples are (but not limited to):
Safety Incidents.
This would be a simple count of the number of safety incidents a project has over its
lifetime. An extrapolation can include “near misses” or avoided incidents.
Uptime/period.
This measure would be the amount of time product or service is available to the customer. It
is used frequently, though not exclusively, by software for how much an application is
available on the web.
Defects/unit.
This is a simple count of quality defects for a defined period.
Earned Value Management (EVM)
EVM metrics such as Cost performance Index (CPI) or Earned Value itself (EV) can be
defined as KPIs to help measure the project success.
Cancelled projects.
For a Pm org, such as a PM Office (PMO) or contracts group the measure of signed
(successful) versus cancelled projects can be a critical KPI.
Metrics in general can be nearly anything you can imagine to measure a project or business.
KPI’s are metrics (measures) The difference is that KPIs are forward looking whereas metrics
measure the here and now ( Project Management Institute, 2008)
Five metrics I have used at Boeing include (but not limited to):
Defects per part:
As opposed to total quality KPIs, defects per part focus on your quality on the individual part
not overall.
Part flowtime:
The amount of time a part (for instance) takes to get though the fabrication process.
Cutters/mills (tools) used:
In fabrication we counted how fast a specific type of tool wore out before it caused a defect in
fabrication of a part.
Part Material cost:
This can be a KPI but in fabrication we calculated the wasted material (which was recycled)
from the total amount of material to make the part. The less waste the more efficient the part
fab from a material cost standpoint.
Lines of code:
In my IT days we would count lines of code and cost out the coding of an application or
change to an application by the lines of code mapped to the requirement. It was valuable as
we had a general idea how many lines a typical coder could write in a day. Lines over time =
labor cost (this is a simplified example)
Padding:
The concept of “padding” is a grey area. There are legitimate ways to account for this. Such
as applying complexity factors to a project estimate or scale factors to project actuals to create
an estimate from a smaller/larger existing project. Where allowable “contingency” can be
added to a plan (sometimes referred to as “management reserve” or other terms) In general
pessimistically adding hours to a estimate or metric in order to look good is considered
unethical in most businesses and the PM domain in general. At best, with the above
exceptions, it is something a PM should not do.
References
Alsadeq, I. & Hakam, T. F. (2010). Meet the New Project Manager—Mr. KPI. Paper
presented at PMI® Global Congress 2010—EMEA, Milan, Italy. Newtown Square,
PA: Project Management Institute.
Project Management Institute. (2008). A guide to the project management body of knowledge
(PMBOK® Guide) (4th ed.). Newtown Square, PA: Project Management Institute.
Student 2 Rachael
Although both metrics and KPIs are quantitative data, KPIs “relate to a specific strategic
business goal and reflect how successful the business is in achieving that goal” and metrics relate
to the activities that may support KPIs (Hatheway, 2016).
Below are some types of data related to procurement which we used in my prior job.
•
•
•
•
•
Total spend YTD (USD)
Number of suppliers (#)
Volume discount by supplier (%)
Total cost savings (%)
Spend with diverse suppliers (%)
This information on their own are metrics and can be useful to track. However, if the
organization has the following strategic goals in order to increase the effectiveness of the
procurement department, then the above metrics can now be used to support the following KPIs:
•
•
•
•
•
Reduce spend by 5% YOY
Increase spend under management to 85%
Reduce the number of vendors so that 80% of spend is with top 20 preferred suppliers
Negotiate cost savings of at least 20% per year
Increase percentage of spend with diverse suppliers by 5%
I can understand where padding comes from and if I was providing an estimate the justification
for wanting to add it. For example, I hate being late with things and prefer to be early so I’d
rather say I will get back to you by end of week when in reality I plan to reply on Wednesday,
that way even if I end up getting sick on Wednesday and therefore I reply on Thursday, a day
later than I initially planned, I still seem dependable and on top of things. However, in projects, I
see how this could be an issue. Although you don’t want a project to be late or over budget, you
want to plan as accurately as possible at that point in time. If the estimates are not accurate, then
your project plan will not be accurate. I will be honest and tell you that I am only on chapter 8 of
Goldratt’s book and so just recently finished the chapter theorizing that padding, or safety, is a
self-fulfilling prophecy. I see a lot of truth in this idea and how that could negatively impact
project management. To help combat this tendency, I think the organization needs to have clear
and documented project processes and guidelines. Various data and lessons learned could be
used to help determine (and cross check) project estimates to ensure accuracy and the
organization should address how uncertainties will be handled (for example, by having
contingency time and budget). If I was providing an estimate, and had the data to help inform
and verify that estimate and also knew there was a process in place to address when unexpected
events occur, I would be more likely to give estimates closer to the actual median amount versus
a padded amount.
Reference:
Hatheway, R. (2016, July 8). The real difference between metrics and KPIs. LinkedIn.
https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/real-difference-between-metrics-kpis-richard-hatheway/
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Discussion Week 5
Please answer the following discussion question with 250-300 words and include references, also used
the 2 student discussions below as example to make sure it is done right. Then write a response to each
of the other students (100 words each) be positive, what you agree with or not and what you like about
it.
Discussion question ( min 250 words include references)
After carefully reviewing the lecture materials, assigned reading(s),
and relevant resources, please respond to the following:
In Chapter 5 of the text, Mark Resch discusses various kinds of
stakeholders – but I think he misses a couple of critical
stakeholders. These stakeholders are not in your organization; they
might not even be in your company. They are the upstream and
downstream suppliers and customers for your process. Discuss why
these entities have to be considered, why they might have an impact
on your project, and how you would manage them.
Have you ever experienced or managed a project where an unexpected
stakeholder emerged to impact project outcomes? Please provide a
real-world example and how this (in hindsight) could have been
identified and managed better.
Note: Please post your original response by Thursday and respond
to at least 2 peers by Sunday. In addition, follow APA guidelines
and cite at least 1 resource to support your discussions; be sure to
include a reference section at the end of your post.
Rubrics
Video 1 https://youtu.be/0EkufUCo5qI
Video 2 https://youtu.be/OkyVirNorAc
Video 3 https://youtu.be/VHGTsEwbOJY
Student 1 Manesa
In Chapter 5 of the text, Mark Resch discusses various kinds of stakeholders – but I think he misses
a couple of critical stakeholders. These stakeholders are not in your organization; they might not
even be in your company. They are the upstream and downstream suppliers and customers for
your process. Discuss why these entities must be considered, why they might have an impact on
your project, and how you would manage them
Customers are a client driven project director’s #1 and best partners. To find success in fostering
those connections, a project supervisor should focus profoundly on their requirements and
objectives
Customer driven project management is tied in with utilizing frameworks that focus on customers
regardless of anything else. Making consistent encounters, communicating more effectively, and
building connections can be generally achieved at project management platform
The project customer is the main individual on the grounds that the venture is being finished for
their advantage. Without them, there is no venture, since there is nobody who meets the
expectations
The upstream supply chain incorporates movements of every kind connected with the organization’s
providers. The downstream inventory network alludes to exercises post-fabricating, specifically
appropriating the item to the last client. (Britt, 2021)
Downstream supply chain can likewise be considered the “demand” while upstream supply chain
network is the “supply.” Supply chain directors try to adjust request and supply to ensure that there
are no lost deals, stock deficiencies, or over-requesting
Upstream and downstream accomplices should convey consistently to assist the whole supply chain
with enhancing efficiency and work on their tasks
Stream of cash likewise normally moves from downstream to upstream. The retailer needs to pay the
merchant for the merchandise they got, and the wholesaler should pay the producer (Waida, 2021)
Have you ever experienced or managed a project where an unexpected stakeholder emerged to
impact project outcomes? Please provide a real-world example and how this (in hindsight) could
have been identified and managed better
When I am working as a medical doctor for a firm back in India, our managing director planned on
building a bigger multi-specialty hospital with every branch of medicine under one roof. Initially we
thought it is going to be a project of reasonable size, However, later few other shareholders like
dentists, homeopathic, Ayurvedic doctors, medical lab joined to make the project even bigger.
Investment of the project grew bigger, and it drew larger patients after our hospital started
functioning. It ended up being very good for the project, however it would have been lot better If it
was planned early
References
Britt, H. (2021, November 02). What Is “Upstream” and “Downstream” in Supply Chain
Management? Supply Chain, pp. 1-4.
Waida, M. (2021, August 06). How to Develop a Customer-Driven Project Management
Philosophy. Project Management, pp. 1-5.
Student 2 Raymond
In Chapter 5 of the text, Mark Resch discusses various kinds of stakeholders – but I think he misses a
couple of critical stakeholders. These stakeholders are not in your organization; they might not even
be in your company. They are the upstream and downstream suppliers and customers for your
process. Discuss why these entities have to be considered, why they might have an impact on your
project, and how you would manage them.
Have you ever experienced or managed a project where an unexpected stakeholder emerged to
impact project outcomes? Please provide a real-world example and how this (in hindsight) could
have been identified and managed better.
In Chapter 5 of the text Mark Resch discusses a variety of different shareholders including
executives, senior managers, project sponsors, program/project managers, business unit managers,
subject matter experts, process owners, legal regulatory specialists, finance representatives,
customer representatives, suppliers/partners/consultants, and the end users (Resch, 2011). There
are however a handful of different critical stakeholders, not all of whom will be affected, and it might
never come to fruition, but it is worth mentioning that competitors, the community, other effected
employees, creditors, government and tax agencies, unions, and groups such as an HOA (Fernando,
2022) could also be designated as stakeholder to a project.
Some of these would only be applicable in certain circumstances, such as my place of
employment, that is located within an HOA and therefore must work with the HOA committee
members to maintain a good status within our local community. This would be a situational
stakeholder, as well as competitors (there might not be any competitors), unions (depending on the
type of project and what resources are needed), and affected employees not involved in the project
(there might not be any other employees affected). The community as a stakeholder might be barely
a footnote, depending on the type of project and the possible effects on the community and type of
community. In rural areas there might not be a major effect or any noticeable effect on a
community, but if the project was a nuclear power plant, for example, the community that might be
included in stakeholders would be a substantially larger area than something more benign or
unaffecting.
Some of the other examples of stakeholders should be considered during the beginning
phase of the project as well. Government and Tax agencies for example play a huge role in a project.
Boeing, for example, is given huge tax breaks by the local and state governments, while a project in
Gig Harbor where I work, failed to get beyond the planning phase due to local government wanting
to charge abhorrent amounts of fees and taxes to the building corporation during construction
phases cutting down the appeal to build in that location.
Over the course of project management there have been a few instances of stakeholders
that were overlooked during the beginning phases of a project that were soon evident that they
were deeply invested in the project and project results. I am a Maintenance Tech where I currently
work and a couple years ago I was investigating a work order about an access point in piping system
that was not correctly covered, and during that investigation it was determined that we needed to
perform an internal audit of all similar rooms in a 200+ apartment complex. It went from being a very
small project to being so large that 47 different residents had to have their cabinets removed, piping
fixed, and replaced. This was a mistake that also required bringing back the plumber that initially
installed the piping throughout the building, as well as the cabinet company for covering the piping
incorrectly. The project went from having under 5 stakeholders, to including the entire resident
population, high level management where I work, affecting all the maintenance department, as well
as outside contractors.
The entire project would have been better managed, and stakeholders better identified, by
performing a better and more thorough final inspection on the work performed in the initial project
build. If there was more oversight and specific requirements of testing to finish different segments of
the initial project than none of these issues would have arose with future stakeholders needing to be
identified.
Thank you
Ray Austin
References:
Fernando, J. (2022, June 29). Learn what stakeholders are and the roles that they play. Investopedia.
Retrieved August 4, 2022, from
https://www.investopedia.com/terms/s/stakeholder.asp#:~:text=Typical%20stakeholders%20a
re%20investors%2C%20employees,or%20external%20to%20the%20organization.
Resch, M. (2011). Strategic Project Management Transformation Delivering Maximum Roi &
Sustainable Business Value. J. Ross Pub.

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