Original Post Date: Wednesday, September 1, 2010

I had expected to present my webinar,  “Best Practices for Cost Effectiveness Studies using TruePlanning” in early August. As you might know, I was planning to show a real world example from a recent engagement with a government customer. Unfortunately, since the Source Selection has not concluded with a downselect, I was not able to obtain the public release in time. However, for this month’s blog I will continue share some of the highlights of the webinar.


In last month’s blog we explored the uses of TruePlanning during Source Selection from the Supplier’s (or Contractor’s) perspective. This month, I would like to share with you some of the uses of TruePlanning cost estimating software from the Customer’s (or Government’s) perspective:

  • Analysis of Alternatives (AoA) – Is proposed technical baseline cost-effective against other competing alternatives?
  • Cost Realism – Are the performers bidding within an accurate range
  • Data Driven Estimating – Are the performers bidding based on appropriate, traceable historical data points.
  • Independent Cost Estimate (ICE) – Using the performer’s technical configuration, what does a completely independent look say about the performer’s bid?
  • Risk Analysis – Is our bid over conservative, how much risk are we willing to take and how much cost exposure can we absorb?
  • Schedule Estimating – Can we really do the job within the schedule constraints?
  • Growth Estimating – What other configurations, materials or technologies might we consider?


While TruePlanning is useful in estimating project costs and all of the above types of analysis, I have found it most useful in developing AoAs. During Source Selection, TruePlanning provides a structured, repeatable framework that can rapidly develop cost estimates across a range of alternatives. These results are often incorporated directly into Operational Effectiveness models along with Measure of Effectiveness and Measures of Performance. In some cases, clients using tools such as Phoenix Model Center can directly link TruePlanning with optimization tools as well. 

Zach Jasnoff,
Solutions Architect, PRICE Systems