Performance : Monitor Schedule

Monitor Schedule

Monitoring the contract or task order schedule might seem fairly simple. Just compare deliverable due dates to the actual dates that you receive the deliverables. If the work is being completed on time, then you're done, right? But what if it's not?

To formally monitor and control the contract and/or task order schedule, it is recommended to use the standard project management tools of Gantt and milestone charts. You'll need to collect information about what's really happening on the project, and then use these tools to compare the actual data to the original baseline plan. Using a Gantt chart, for example, allows you to see how the consequences of delays ripple throughout the entire project lifecycle.

Earned value (EV) is a sophisticated data presentation model that correlates schedule, scope, and cost to create a unified picture of project progress. A Gantt chart might show you that a consultant is ahead of schedule, but an EV chart would show you that he/she is over budget. EV has many benefits. It can help you to predict future performance based on performance to date. Plus, it requires the consultant to:

  • ask questions of his/her own staff
  • collect his/her own performance data
  • validate his/her own work

Although a detailed discussion of EV is outside the scope of this issue, it's a valuable tool that is worth learning more about. Contact your District Project Management Coordinator for additional information.