Saturday, April 2, 2011

Earned Value Management Systems ANSI/EIA-748-B-2007 compared with PMI Practice Standard for EVM

There are two good sources to learn about Earned Value Management Systems (EVMS), both of which are very useful when considering the implementation of EVMS. The first is a book of the Project Management Institute titled "Practice Standard for EARNED VALUE MANAGEMENT" published by Project Management Institute, Inc. in 2005. The second is the  ANSI/EIA-748-B-2007 about Earned Value Management Systems. It's not easy to choose between both authorities in the field. I'm going to say a few important things about both sources so that you can make a decision.

The PMI Practice Standard is clearer, more practical and it has images and formulas that you can use in a simple way. The EIA-748-B is a good text without formulas nor images. Both are short and easy to read. The PMI Practice Standard is oriented to Project Management and the EIA-748-B is oriented to Program Management (http://www.earned-value.com/2009/04/author.html) . With a few differences, both are useful for the overseeing of projects.

The PMI Practice Standard has chapters dedicated to Performance Analysis and Forecasting while the EIA-748-B is more dedicated to the basics. Both propose Key Practices. While the PMI Practice Standard presents the CPI and SPI, the EIA-748-B only presents the concepts of Variations. The fault of PMI Practice Standard is the proposal of using the SPI defined in an old way that today is recognized as a bad index (http://www.earned-value.com/2011/03/spi-is-not-good-index-at-project-finish.html).

The PMI Practice Standard defines five (5) different Earned Value Measurement Techniques while the EIA-748-B only presents three (3). The EIA-748-B takes care of changes in deeper way, expressing points of view about Retroactive Changes and Internal Replanning.

I think that the EIA-748-B could be used as a more flexible standard in order to allow evolution and the work between different organizations. The Program orientation is something good for project overseeing and PMOs. The PMI Practice Standard could be a good guide for Project Management and a more precise definition to automate the processes or to create a software.

As a conclusion, both sources are useful. My recomendation is that you use the EIA-748-B as the standard and create a more precise and practical guide based on the PMI Practice Standard.

1 comment:

Abbey Ray said...

PMI’s Project Management Professional (PMP)® credential is the most important industry-recognized certification for project managers. Recently I went for a PMP prep course by the training provider you have mentioned, Instructer was too good and I passed with relative ease. Looking forwards to apply what I learned in PMP classes in my company