Project Life Cycle

11 November 2016

We would like to express our gratitude to Mr. Manohar Gulati who gave us valuable advice and shared his views which were extremely helpful in preparing this report. It would not have been possible to prepare this report without his guidance. He has taught us different topics of Project Management which has helped us to write this project report. He imparted us knowledge about quality management, time relationship with project. His guidance and vision helped us in exploring different ways to complete this challenging task.

The Project Life Cycle refers to a logical sequence of activities to accomplish the project’s goals or objectives. Regardless of scope or complexity, any project goes through a series of stages during its life. There is first an Initiation or Birth phase, in which the outputs and critical success factors are defined, followed by a Planning phase, characterized by breaking down the project into smaller parts/tasks, an Execution phase, in which the project plan is executed, and lastly a Closure or Exit phase, that marks the completion of the project.

Project Life Cycle Essay Example

Project activities must be grouped into phases because by doing so, the project manager and the core team can efficiently plan and organize resources for each activity, and also objectively measure achievement of goals and justify their decisions to move ahead, correct, or terminate. It is of great importance to organize project phases into industry-specific project cycles. Why? Not only because each industry sector involves specific requirements, tasks, and procedures when it comes to projects, but also because different industry sectors have different needs for life cycle management methodology.

And paying close attention to such details is the difference between doing things well and excelling as project managers. Now the concept of value engineering has evolved to complete the projects effectively and cost efficiently. Value engineering (VE) is the systematic review of a project, product, or process to improve performance, quality, and/or life-cycle cost by an independent multidisciplinary team of specialists.

It is the focus on the functions that the project, product, or process must perform that sets VE apart from other quality-improvement or cost-reduction approaches. Today, VE is not only recognized but also acclaimed as one of the best Value Improving Practices that management can deploy. Its successful application to strategic planning, quality improvement, management studies, manufacturing, and construction has demonstrated both its versatility and its durability as a management practice.

Three things differentiate VE from other management tools: * VE is function based * VE is multidisciplinary * VE follows a specific methodology Thus our focus of study was to understand the application of Value Engineering during different phases of the project life cycle and with the help of some examples we have tried to explain the concept of value engineering in reducing cost by eliminating various unproductive activities or with the use of substitute products.

It was discovered that during the early phases of a life cycle such as at the concept level or in the design phase, if the concept of the value engineering is applied then the potential of reducing cost was more but as when the project is in the construction phase applying the concept of value engineering will reduce cost but will not be that effective as if applied in the earlier phases of the project.  Value Engineering defined:- Value engineering is a systematic method to improve the “value” of goods and services by using an examination of function.

Value, as defined, is the ratio of function to cost. Value can therefore be increased by either improving the function or reducing the cost. It is a primary tenet of value engineering that basic functions be preserved and not be reduced as a consequence of pursuing value improvements. In the United States, value engineering is specifically spelled out in Public Law 104-106, which states “Each executive agency shall establish and maintain cost-effective value engineering procedures and processes. ” Value engineering is sometimes taught within the project management or industrial engineering body of nowledge as a technique in which the value of a system’s outputs is optimized by crafting a mix of performance (function) and costs. In most cases this practice identifies and removes unnecessary expenditures, thereby increasing the value for the manufacturer and/or their customers. VE follows a structured thought process that is based exclusively on “function”, i. e. what something “does” not what it is. For example a screw driver that is being used to stir a can of paint has a “function” of mixing the contents of a paint can and not the original connotation of securing a screw into a screw-hole.

In value engineering “functions” are always described in a two word abridgment of an active verb and measurable noun (what is being done – the verb – and what it is being done to – the noun) and to do so in the most non-prescriptive way possible. In the screw driver and can of paint example, the most basic function would be “blend liquid” which is less prescriptive than “stir paint” which can be seen to limit the action (by stirring) and to limit the application (only considers paint. ) This is the basis of what value engineering refers to as “function analysis”.

Value engineering uses rational logic (a unique “how” – “why” questioning technique) and the analysis of function to identify relationships that increase value. It is considered a quantitative method similar to the scientific method, which focuses on hypothesis – conclusion to test relationships, and operations research, which uses model building to identify predictive relationships. Value engineering (VE) is also referred to as or “value management” or “value methodology” (VM), and “value analysis” (VA).

VE is above all a structured problem solving process based on function analysis—understanding something with such clarity that it can be described in two words, the active verb and measurable noun abridgement. For example, the function of a pencil is to “make marks”. This then facilitates considering what else can make marks. From a spray can, lipstick, a diamond on glass to a stick in the sand, one can then clearly decide upon which alternative solution is most appropriate. Project Life Cycle defined :-

The Project Life Cycle refers to a logical sequence of activities to accomplish the project’s goals or objectives. Regardless of scope or complexity, any project goes through a series of stages during its life. There is first an Initiation or Birth phase, in which the outputs and critical success factors are defined, followed by a Planning phase, characterized by breaking down the project into smaller parts/tasks, an Execution phase, in which the project plan is executed, and lastly a Closure or Exit phase, that marks the completion of the project.

Project activities must be grouped into phases because by doing so, the project manager and the core team can efficiently plan and organize resources for each activity, and also objectively measure achievement of goals and justify their decisions to move ahead, correct, or terminate. It is of great importance to organize project phases into industry-specific project cycles. Why? Not only because each industry sector involves specific requirements, tasks, and procedures when it comes to projects, but also because different industry sectors had different needs for life cycle management methodology.

And paying close attention to such details is the difference between doing things well and excelling as project managers. Diverse project management tools and methodologies prevail in the different project cycle phases. Let’s take a closer look at what’s important in each one of these stages: Phases of Project Life Cycle :- 1) Initiation In this first stage, the scope of the project is defined along with the approach to be taken to deliver the desired outputs. The project manager is appointed and in turn, he selects the team members based on their skills and experience.

The most common tools or methodologies used in the initiation stage are Project Charter, Business Plan, Project Framework (or Overview), Business Case Justification, and Milestones Reviews. 2) Planning The second phase should include a detailed identification and assignment of each task until the end of the project. It should also include a risk analysis and a definition of a criteria for the successful completion of each deliverable. The governance process is defined, stake holders identified and reporting frequency and channels agreed.

The most common tools or methodologies used in the planning stage are Business Plan and Milestones Reviews. 3) Execution and controlling The most important issue in this phase is to ensure project activities are properly executed and controlled. During the execution phase, the planned solution is implemented to solve the problem specified in the project’s requirements. In product and system development, a design resulting in a specific set of product requirements is created.

This convergence is measured by prototypes, testing, and reviews. As the execution phase progresses, groups across the organization become more deeply involved in planning for the final testing, production, and support. The most common tools or methodologies used in the execution phase are an update of Risk Analysis and Score Cards, in addition to Business Plan and Milestones Reviews. 4) Closure In this last stage, the project manager must ensure that the project is brought to its proper completion.

The closure phase is characterized by a written formal project review report containing the following components: a formal acceptance of the final product by the client, Weighted Critical Measurements (matching the initial requirements specified by the client with the final delivered product), rewarding the team, a list of lessons learned, releasing project resources, and a formal project closure notification to higher management. No special tool or methodology is needed during the closure phase. APPLICATION :- Construction in the 1970s is a 100- billion- dollar industry. Reducing the amount of unnecessary cost , i. . costs that do not bring either use or aesthetic functions to the user, provides enormous opportunity for benefits to the architect, engineer, contractor, owner and society. Definition for Construction Industry:- George Begg, while opening the symposium on Value Engineering in Federal construction Agencies for the federal Construction Agency, stated Value Engineering is hereby defined as an Engineering and architectural discipline that focuses attention on the essential function in a chosen design or construction objective and emphasizes meeting the essential function at the lowest cost.

A. J. Dell’isola defines total cost as “Construction, operation, maintenance and replacement Why So Much Unfunctioning Cost in the Construction Industry? The industry is bound by obsolete codes and by differing codes in differing jurisdictions. Examples of codes that have remained unchanged through twenty to thirty years despite enormously changed conditions are far too common. Obsolete design details are repeated from job to job. Materials that bring no user function (either use or aesthetic) are often used. New functional materials are not used. Practices from the past are followed.

Habits from the past enter the design, contracting, and construction. Most construction jobs involve three businesses: architects and engineers, contractors, and owners. The Architects and Engineers The objective of the architect and engineer is to produce a good competitive design from available materials and skills without uncertainties and at minimum design cost. Most of the time, using newer materials and/or approaches means time and expense searching and testing. In addition, there is the time, expense, and uncertainty involved in attempting to communicate with and convince the owner.

Lastly, the contractor may have problems in finding the equipment and skills needed to utilize the new approach in the construction phase. Changing from past practice means uncertainties in prices. Also, because the fee is usually a percentage of the project costs, the architect, for all of his extra work and expense, ends up with a lower fee. More work, more uncertainty, and a lower fee are the outlook for the architect. Why should he search for, test, and promote the new, spend much effort in getting approvals of the contractor and owner, or use valuable energies in long drawn-out processes with governing bodies to get codes changed?

Present methods of material selection involve the architect-engineer, who selects materials that conform to the design criteria of the owner. The architect-engineer is responsible for determining which materials are most suitable from the point of view of economy, function, and maintenance. Generally the selection of the bulk of the material is done by the architect or engineer working on a particular aspect of a design. For example, the electrical engineer selects such items as conductors, conduits, and panel boxes.

The architect selects the material for such items as windows, doors, hardware, and exterior finish. In certain major areas, economic studies are conducted, for example, in fuel selection and structural system. However, in most instances, any selection of material or any studies are made by an individual or group within the same discipline. Normally no formal overall plan is followed, no interdiscipline benefits are developed, and no full-time employee is available to coordinate activities or follow through the development of new ideas. The Contractors To the contractor, uncertainty is “poison in the soup. He relies on his experience in quoting prices. He knows the ease or difficulty in getting various skills, equipment, and coordination and mutual assistance between groups in overlap areas. He also knows the probabilities of making mistakes or incurring delays due to error or misunderstanding. He wants to do his work in the manner that he has always done it, with the skills that he knows he can get, with each man doing a task that he knows “forward and backward,” and with the interfaces between the various tasks predicted and proved by the involved work groups.

Different materials mean different fabricating methods, unpredicted problems, and perhaps costly delays and repairs. The contractor naturally is reluctant to bid in areas of change without adding contingency costs, which may nullify the benefits of the change on that job. Understandably, the contractor, in general, is not the promoter of change. The Owners The owner relies upon the architects and engineers to design for him the building that most economically will meet his needs and wants for use and aesthetic functions.

He can and often does, in general terms, encomagc the use of new functional products and processes, but he must leave the actions and responsibilities in the hands of the architects and engineers.  Place the source of the hot water and compressed air where it is needed. Reduce initial costs $46,000 and life cycle (twenty-year) costs an additional $57,000. Eliminate a low-water-table problem. Simplify the design of door canopies. Reduce costs from $400 to $150 each. Make unnecessary the involvement of seven trades.

Change parking-area pavement from 12-inch compacted subbase and crushed-rock base to 8 inches of lime stabilized subgrade and 4 inches of subbase and crushed-rock base. Secure change of government specifications. Reduce construction cost $8,000. Use of the Functional Approach The following six questions may be used as a guide to the work, which sets the problems and solves them. 1. What is the item, project, or service? 2. What does it do (define the function)? 3. What is the (dollar) value of the function? 4. What does the item, project, or service cost? 5. What else will perform the function? . What will that cost? Planned walk-through tunnel and simplified tunnel; $46,000, lower initial cost; $103,000, lower life-cycle cost. EXAMPLE 2 Planned and changed door canopies. Costs reduced from $400 to $150 each.  Parking-area pavement. When in the Life Cycle Is Value Engineering Most Productive? The phases in the life cycle of the typical construction item may be listed as follows: Conceptual Developmental Preliminary design Final design Construction Operation and maintenance Replacement Relation of costs and benefits to phases in cycle of construction work

Thus with the examples of various phases of Construction Industry where value engineering has been applied, the following benefits could be derived: •VE is a proactive results oriented methodology that “adds value” to products and services. It is not a suggestion program. •VE provides high returns on your investment. •VE reduces capital and life cycle costs. •VE provides “Performance / Productivity / Quality” improvements. •VE reduces time to market / improves project schedules. •VE provides a step change rather than just an incremental change in your business. VE methodology provides the tools and creates an environment for your project teams to find creative and cost effective solutions to complex technical and organizational problems. •VE improves Managements decision-making capabilities by presenting alternative solutions to a problem. You are not stuck with one solution to a problem.

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