6.3 Our Five-Step Management Approach
The CSC/PBFI Team's approach to planning and managing an individual task involves a five-step process, illustrated in figure 6-3. This management approach will support the CSC/PBFI Team in meeting its goal of timely, responsive project performance.
Figure 6-3. The CSC/PBFI Team Five Step Management Approach for CHART II
CSC/PBFI Advantage: An open exchange of information at all stages of project performance is key to the CSC/PBFI management philosophy.
The CSC/PBFI Team uses a well-defined and logical process consistent with the Catalyst methodology to control our work and provide customers with insight into our activities at every step.
Step 1: Understand the Task. The quality of results is directly dependent on the degree to which we understand the task. For a task to be successful, it is imperative the project team understands the expected results. Our participation in the design "run off" ensures that we have an in-depth understanding of the MDSHA’s requirements and our design solution for the implementation of the CHART II system.
Step 2: Create a Project Management Plan. The second element of success is a well-defined Project Management Plan (PMP). Our overall technical approach and schedule for CHART II is included in earlier sections of this document but a more detailed implementation plan and schedule will be coordinated with the MDSHA at the beginning of the development and implementation project. This plan will describe the individual subtasks required for completing each element of design with measurable milestones. This plan includes a Work and Milestone Planning Schedule that our Task Manager and MDSHA officials can use to determine the project’s progress against the plan. The Plan also includes sections on risk management, quality, configuration management, acceptance procedures, and resolution procedures. The PMP is maintained and updated for the duration of the project.
Step 3: Monitor Execution. We establish metrics for each task and use project-monitoring tools to determine progress. For example, we track software development tasks by establishing and then monitoring actual progress and lines of code produced against baseline schedules and milestones, and comparing incurred costs to the budget. We perform periodic technical reviews to assess our progress. During task planning, we will use tools such as Microsoft Project and Deltek, our financial accounting system, to establish baselines, compare task results with task goals, and report any problems promptly. These tools also help identify corrective actions and potential effects of resource or priority changes. Access to our automated systems and management review meetings will provide MDSHA technical staff ample opportunity to observe or query any project’s status.
Step 4: Report Results. Microsoft Project and Deltek, our financial accounting system, provide detailed management information in formal monthly reports and ad hoc management reports that are available at any time that can be used for project control purposes.
Step 5: Receive Feedback. A continuous feedback loop to MDSHA completes the task management process. We use information provided by our automated tracking and formal report systems and our weekly reviews to identify potential problems and develop the action plans as part of our Continual Quality Improvement (CQI) effort. This process enables rapid feedback, which allows us to review prior steps and adjust our efforts accordingly.
The key benefits of CSC’s five-step management approach equate to timely, high quality products; superior performance; and low cost, hence meeting our objective to provide the highest quality, most cost-effective support to CHART II.