What is Project Control Definition?
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Project Control Definition
Project controls is a function (not a job description) and any one person may fulfil parts or all of the function as defined and include other allied function such as various aspects of contract and project administration within their particular job description.
The project controls function is defined as:
Project controls are the data gathering, management and analytical processes used to predict, understand and constructively influence the time and cost outcomes of a project or program; through the communication of information in formats that assist effective governance, management and decision making.
This definition encompasses all stages of a project or program’s lifecycle from the initial estimating needed to ‘size’ a proposed project, through to reflective learning (lessons learned) and the forensic analysis needed to understand the causes of failure (and develop claims).
The functions undertaken by project controls professionals includes estimating future works, determining the current status of work in progress, understanding the reasons for this status and recommending appropriate actions or alternatives based on the observed status and trends. Within this framework, for a recommendation or prediction to be useful, the reliability of the information upon which it is based needs to be understood, and additionally, any realistic estimate or forecast must take into account uncertainty and the cost and time consequences of identified risk events.
Consequently, the project controls discipline can be seen as encompassing:
- Project strategy , contribute to the development of the project strategy by undertaking planning and methods studies, and value engineering to help the Project Manager (PM) optimize future outcomes and satisfy stakeholder requirements;
- Scheduling including development, updating and maintenance;
- Cost estimation, cost engineering/control and benefits management;
- Risk management , including maintaining the risk register and risk analysis/assessment;
- Earned Value Management and Earned Schedule, including WBS, OBS and other breakdown structures,
- Document control and records management;
- Supplier performance measurement / oversight (but excluding contract administration);
- Stakeholder analytics and issues tracking (but excluding stakeholder engagement and management);
- Some statistical aspects of quality control as they affect future performance and the prediction of project outcomes; plus any aspects quality directly linked to the management and performance of the project controls function itself such as measuring the quality of the data used for estimation (but excluding any direct involvement in the management of the work of the project).
- The elements of a project management methodology that integrate these disciplines both within the ‘controls’ domain and with other project management functions; including the management of the project controls function and processes;
- Potentially elements of organisational governance, culture and ethics as they apply to project and program teams and affect their work;
- Developing, maintaining and using relevant historical data sets (lessons learned / production rates / knowledge management / etc.); and
- The ability to effectively communicate to management, the information generated by these processes.
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