Project activity cost estimation
Theestimation of the cost of a particular project involves determiningthe varied activities and tasks in the project, their duration forcompletion, how they follow each other and the necessary resourcesfor the same. There are varied steps for involved in the estimationof the costs pertaining to a particular task of activity. First, theresources necessary for carrying out the work would have to bedefined (Marchewka,2009).This would be followed by a determination of the amounts of theseresources that would be needed in the activities. Third, the costpertaining to the use of every resource would have to be defined,after which the cost pertaining to every activity or task would becalculated. The lasts step would involve ensuring that exact orappropriate amounts of the resources are allocated so as to preventwastage of resources. Failure to account for or to follow these stepsin determining the costs of a particular project or activity wouldhinder the determination of the true cost pertaining to the project(Marchewka,2009).
Project quality Plan Elements
Aproject quality plan outlines the objectives, techniques, reviews,standards and documentation so as to ensure that every other step istaken to safeguard the satisfaction of consumers by through theassurance that quality approach was taken (Lewis,2007).Project quality plan would also come in handy in ensuring thattargets are met with regard to the completion of specific activitiesand timeframes. In instances where the project falls way behindschedule, it would mean that the monitoring and control element ofthe project quality plan is failing. Indeed, controlling process areincorporated in almost every project management stage and areresponsible for ensuring that not only are the targets or objectivesof the project being met but also that the appropriate correctiveaction is taken in instances where problems come up (Lewis,2007).Monitoring and control elements work with the facilitation processesincluding quality control, schedule control and cost control so as toensure that the deadlines are met and that the project remains ontrack.
Indirectcosts refer to the fixed or variable costs that would not be directlyaccounted for by the project (Marchewka,2009).These may include costs for utilities, administrative costs andinsurance among others. Proper determination of the administrativecosts would involve the determination of the combined indirect costrate through the calculation of the ratio pertaining to the projectedoverhead costs to the projected direct salaries (Marchewka,2009).The indirect costs of the activity would be determined by multiplyingthe direct salaries by rates of indirect costs. On the same note,indirect costs may be determined by the use of a single rate foroverhead costs and another one for administrative and general costs.The overhead rate would be determined through calculating the ratiopertaining to all overhead costs to the projected direct salaries.The rates of general-and-administrative costs would be determinedthrough calculating the ratio pertaining to the projectedadministrative and general costs to the projected overhead costs,direct salaries, as well as other direct costs.
Importance of critical path
Criticalpath underlines the sequence pertaining to the project networkactivities that add up to make the longest overall duration. Thisallows for the determination of the shortest time possible for thecompletion of a particular project (Harrison& Lock, 2004).In essence, critical path analysis (CPM) would involve a calculationof the longest path pertaining to the planned activities to the endor the logical end points of a project, as well as the latest andearliest time by which every activity would kick off or be completedwithout increasing the duration of the project (Harrison& Lock, 2004).Critical path plays a crucial role in the determination oridentification of the days of float. Float is determined by theduration that an activity takes to complete and the number of daysavailable between the date for beginning that activity and the onethat follows directly afterwards. Further, it allows for thevisualization of the crucial tasks pertaining to a project therebyallowing managers to plan and visualize their activities accordingly.
Harrison,F. L., & Lock, D. (2004). Advancedproject management: A structured approach.Aldershot, England: Gower.
Heerkens,G. R. (2001). Projectmanagement.London: McGraw-Hill.
Lewis,J. P. (2007). Fundamentalsof project management.New York: American Management Association. (Heerkens, 2001)
Marchewka,J. (2009). Information technology project management. (3rd ed.).Hoboken, NJ: John Wiley & Sons, Inc.