Original Post Date: Monday, December 6, 2010 

In his August blog-entry here, Zach Jasnoff outlined typical client perspectives for the different types of analyses that TruePlanning can accommodate. Working on a large project, we’ve experienced situations that, realistically, can happen where the initial intent and model structuring later have the boundaries of model appropriateness stretched. An Analysis of Alternatives (AoA), for example, is meant to measure deltas between baseline and its alternatives. If common costs “wash” then they can be excluded… which becomes an issue when treated as a Rough Order Magnitude for customer budgeting. 

Likewise, if a ROM or Independent Cost Estimate (ICE) of acquisition costs is extended to Program Lifecycle Costs, significant gap analysis is in someone’s future. TruePlanning can handle these tasks. But obviously it’s always best to establish use of an estimate and its underlying model, beyond initial application. TruePlanning has enormous flexibility. We analysts endeavor to do the same.  Clients, particularly those new to parametric cost estimation, just need coaching and synchronization up-front sometimes. They may think they have “the estimate” when it only covers certain configurations, activities, phases or cost-categories. Expanding a model is simple enough; creating and defending changes can be tough for the customer internally. 

I’m continuing to realize that when in doubt, make it clear what an estimate & model is meant for, and what it’s not.

John Swaren
Solutions Consultant, PRICE Systems