Case Study: Avoiding Failure

1150 Words 5 Pages
Avoiding Failure (Chuck Rambo)

As mentioned previously, the Coast Guard encountered many setbacks and failures during the Deepwater Horizon project. How can they avoid these identified miscalculations?

The Coast Guard did not follow their best practices and used unreliable life-cycle cost estimates. Using best practices, the foundation of any project, the Coast Guard would have managed the project within the agreed upon cost and guidelines. Additionally, the Coast Guard allowed the contractors to set the estimates and control the price, which got away from them and over ran the budget. They should have followed their own best practices and the four characteristics of reliable estimates: 1) well-documented, 2) comprehensive, 3) accurate,
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By not doing so, labor, material, equipment, and funding requirements do not provide any benchmarks and the per-period cost of the project is not accurately reflected, leading to the project going over budget and wasting of scheduled resources not in use. Accurately reflecting this information will reduce the probability of the program slipping off schedule and budget. The critical path is the sequencing of the project to determine the minimum and maximum time needed for an operation. The Deepwater project did not develop and accurate program schedule, therefore, no critical path was determined. Failing to do determine the critical path put the management team at a significant disadvantage and unable to monitor activities that may have a detrimental effect on the project down the road. Developing an accurate project schedule and identifying the critical path will help identify issues downstream and provide timing and space for any …show more content…
The Coast Guard and Northrup Grumman stated that risk analysis was not part of the contract and therefore the responsibility to identify risk fell through the cracks. Also, failing to identify risk decreases the likelihood of meeting milestones and these failures add up and cause a breakdown in the project scheduling. The comprehensive schedule risk analysis is an essential tool for decision makers (page 76). This will allow the project manager to see across the breadth of the project and determine if scheduled activities will meet the completion date. A schedule risk analysis will calculate schedule reserves, which can be set aside for those activities identified as high risk. Without this reserve, the program faces additional delays to the scheduled completion date (page 76). Conducting schedule risk analysis, properly identifying the risk to the project timeline and milestones, and building in reserves, will reduce the overall risk to the project and keep it

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