Essay about EPM Final Exam Questions

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EPM Final Exam Questions (Autumn & Spring 2008)
Question 1
a. Project life cycle (with diagram), why it’s important in project management (planning, developing, executing and delivering phases) (5 marks)
The lifecycle recognizes that projects have a limited life span and that there are predictable changes in level of effort and focus over the life of the project. There are various life cycle models used in the industry usually industry tailored. The general project life cycle consists of 4 phases; defining phase, planning phase, executing phase, and delivering phase.

b. Advantages & disadvantages of functional matrix and dedicated team structures (5 marks)
Functional Matrix
Advantages
Disadvantages
No change
Lack of focus
Flexibility
Poor integration
In-depth expertise
Slow (slow response time)
Easy post project transition Lack of ownership

Dedicated Team Structures
Advantages
Disadvantages
Simple
Expensive
Fast
Internal strife
Cohesive
Limited technological expertise Cross-functional
Difficult post project integration transition

c. What is scope? How is this related to WBS? (5 marks)
The scope is the keystone which interlocks all the elements of a project plan. In the planning stages, the scope will help identify what needs to be achieved from the project as well as any inclusions or

exclusions to the project. Some of the key elements that should be included in the scope are; project objective, deliverables, milestones, technical requirements, limits and exclusions. Once the scope is completed you will need to review it with the customer so both parties are aware of the expectations. Once the scope is identified the work in the project can be divided into smaller and smaller tasks. These small tasks are used to outline the project from the top till the bottom and show a clear image of what needs to be done at what time. The WBS defines all the elements of the project in a hierarchical framework and establishes their relationships to the end product.
d. Why is it important to define scope and exclusions?
Defining the project scope sets the stage for developing a project plan. The project scope definition is a document that will be published and used by the project owner and project participants for planning and measuring the project success. Exclusions further define the boundary of the project by stating what is not included to ensure that the customer is aware of aspects of the project that will not be considered.
e. Describe the components of the strategic management process. How do projects play a role in the strategic plan? (5 marks)
The strategic management process is comprised of 4 activities which are as follows;
1. Review and define the organizational mission – the mission statements identify the scope of the organization in terms of its product or service. The mission statement communicates and identifies the purpose of the organization to all stakeholders and can also be used in evaluating organization performance
2. Set long range goals and objectives – these objectives translate the organization mission into specific, concrete and measurable terms and also set targets for all levels of the organization. By setting objectives it will allow the company to work towards a goal which helps them prosper
3. Analyze and formulate strategies to reach objectives – formulating strategy answers the question of what needs to be done to reach objectives which include determining and evaluating other alternatives that support the organizations objectives and choosing the best one. The next step is to perform a SWOT analysis on the company
4. Implement strategies through projects – in this stage we will consider how the strategies will be realized and what resources are required. Project managers agree that without an implementation phase projects cannot be successful
Each company has its own business strategy that it needs to follow in order for it to prosper.
Projects play a key role in the strategic plan because the…