We’re building a tool that quickly and easily allows you to map costs in your TruePlanning projects to any custom Work Breakdown Structure (WBS), including templates for the MIL-STD-881C. By mapping TruePlanning costs to fit your point of view, you can make use of your organization’s existing research, and ensure that your cost estimates are complete, realistic, and can be easily compared to other projects apples-to-apples. This is great for AoAs and analyzing where and why costs differ between various solutions (not to mention 881C mapping is a required deliverable for major DoD programs).
In TruePlanning, you have lots of freedom in how to model your project. You can use models at a level of detail that matches the information you’ve got on hand. You can add in layers of integration, assembly, and project management wherever it makes sense. For each estimate, you end up with a structure that’s totally specific to your project – and this often makes it hard to compare apples-to-apples with other projects, or to present your estimates in a standardized way.
Basically, the best format for delivering a cost estimate isn’t always the same as the best format for building a cost estimate – it all depends on how you’re going to use it. System engineers and other technical decision makers are more interested in seeing an estimate organized by the WBS than by however the estimate was constructed.
If you’ve ever used spreadsheets to manually map a large cost estimate, piece by piece, you know just how painful and tedious it can get.
The WBS Mapper tool is designed to cut way down on the time it takes to build a mapping. You can save and load your desired formats (including templates for the MIL-STD-881C). Then, you can set up all kinds of rules to do big, global mappings (i.e. All Software costs get mapped here), or you can drill down into specific mappings down to a single activity (this one instance of a COTS purchase maps there). You can easily implement exceptions to your rules (All my project management goes in bucket x…. well, except for this piece, which goes to bucket y). And it has a great visual tool to look at your mappings, check for completeness, view results by costs, labor hours, etc. This tool just might be a lifesaver.