Thursday, November 18, 2010

The Four Primary Audits in Project Management

There are four primary audits which may be used: Project management audit, Project performance audit, Pre-project (planning phase) audit, or Post-project (close out phase) audit.

Project Management Audit

A Project Management Audit provides a comprehensive examination of project management performance. This is accomplished through discussions and interviews with the project manager, technical leaders, and a sampling of project team members. You can also use reviews and examinations of project documents. Typically, this is used with larger and long duration projects. This type of audit should be performed quarterly until the project is completed. It is best when performed by an impartial auditor, but may be performed by the project manager or project team.
This audit includes examination of:
  • Project work plan and support plans created to guide the project management effort
  • Effectiveness of project work plan and support plan implementation
  • Oversight of project resource management and task performance
  • Oversight of project vendor/contractor management and task performance
  • Fulfillment of customer contractual obligations

Project Performance Audit

A Project Performance Audit shows a detailed examination of the financial and business aspects of the project. Emphasis is on evaluating and confirming the ability of the project to achieve specified objectives. During this audit, earned value analysis is applied, business case elements are reviewed, and project risk management plan is evaluated. This may be done independently or in conjunction with a project management audit.
This audit includes examination of:
  • The business case used to manage selection and continuation of the project
  • Cost specified in the project work plan
  • Schedule specified in the project work plan
  • Resource utilization specified in the project work plan
  • The project risk management plan

Pre-Project Audit

The Pre-Project, or Planning Phase, Audit validates project readiness for implementation. It transitions from the planning phase to the execution phase and is usually performed by the project manager and project team. It is applicable to all projects.
This audit includes examination of:
  • Initial project management documents
  • Initial technical documents
  • Initial project management planning documents
  • Initial project team documents
  • Initial vendor and contractor documents
  • Initial customer documents

Post-Project Audit

The Post-Project, or Closing Phase, Audit confirms project readiness for closure. It is performed when all project activities have been completed, deliverables have been accepted, and the project is ready for closure. It is usually performed by the project manager and project team and is applicable to all projects.
This audit includes examination of:
  • Customer acceptance of project deliverables
  • Project lessons learned
  • Vendor/contractor close out activities
Any of these audits will be beneficial to your project. Knowing how your project is operating, if it is on time and on budget, is an area in which many organizations are failing. Being proactive in monitoring projects will save your company valuable time and money.

Written by Keith Mathis, 18 November 2010

No comments:

Post a Comment