CHAPTER TWO Project Management Framework
Four project managers are having lunch together and discussing their projects. Most of the time they are just complaining about how hard projects are to manage in their company. Some complain about the stakeholders and the number of changes they cause. Others talk about how hard it is to get people to cooperate and perform. One project manager wants to focus on the advantages of the matrix-type organization they all work in for their projects. Which of the following would he mention?
A. Improved project manager control over resources
B. More than one boss for project teams
C. Communications are easier
D. Reporting is easier
Explanation Remember that if the question doesn't state what it is comparing to, it is comparing to a functional organization.
Two project managers have just realized that they are in a weak matrix organization and that their power as project managers is quite limited. One figures out that he is really a project expediter and the other realizes he is really a project coordinator. How is a project expediter different from a project coordinator?
A. The project expediter cannot make decisions.
B. The project expediter can make more decisions.
C. The project expediter reports to a higher-level manager.
D. The project expediter has some authority.
Explanation The project coordinator reports to a higher-level manager and has authority to make some decisions. The project expediter has no authority to make decisions.
In a projectized organization, the project team:
A. Reports to many bosses.
B. Has no loyalty to the project.
C. Reports to the functional manager.
D. Will not always have a home
Explanation The main drawback of the projectized organization is that at the end of the project, the team is dispersed but they do not have a functional department (home) to which to return.
A project manager is trying to complete a software development project, but cannot get enough attention for the project. Resources are focused on completing process-related work and the project manager has little authority to properly assign resources. What form of organization must the project manager be working in?
Explanation In a functional organization, the project manager has the least support for the project and has little authority to assign resources. Choices C and D are roles in a weak matrix organization.
A project manager has very little project experience, but he has been assigned as the project manager of a new project. Because he will be working in a matrix organization to complete his project, he can expect communications to be:
B. Open and accurate.
D. Hard to automate.
Explanation Because a project done in a matrix organization involves people from across the organization, communications are more complex.
A project team member is talking to another team member and complaining that many people are asking him to do things. If he works in a functional organization, who has the power to give direction to the team member?
A. The project manager
B. The functional manager
C. The team
D. Tight matrix
Explanation In a functional organization, the functional manager is the team member's boss and probably also the project manager's boss.
Who has the MOST power in a projectized organization?
A. The project manager
B. The functional manager
C. The team
D. They all share power
Explanation In a projectized organization, the entire company is organized by projects, giving the project manager the most power.
All of the following are characteristics of a project EXCEPT:
B. Definite beginning and end.
C. Interrelated activities.
D. Repeats itself every month.
Explanation Choice D implies that the whole project repeats every month. Generally, the only things that might repeat in a project are some activities. The whole project does not repeat.
All of the following are parts of the team's stakeholder management effort EXCEPT:
A. Giving stakeholders extras.
B. Identifying stakeholders.
C. Determining stakeholders' needs.
D. Managing stakeholders' expectations.
Explanation Giving stakeholders extras is known as gold plating. This is not effective stakeholder or quality management.
A manager and the head of engineering discuss a change to a major work package. After the meeting, the manager contacts you and tells you to complete the paperwork to make the change. This is an example of:
A. Management attention to scope management.
B. Management planning.
C. A project expediter position.
D. A change control system.
Explanation This is an example of a project expediter position because you are not evaluating the change, looking for impacts, etc. You are merely implementing others' requests. In this case, you are acting as the project expediter.
The project is in the planning process group when three stakeholders come to the project manager asking for information on the company's new project management methodology. They want to know where it came from and why it is different from the way they currently manage projects. These stakeholders are also friends of the project manager, and the entire group has worked together for years. The project is using some new terms like corrective action that are making some stakeholders nervous, as they are unsure whether the way projects will be managed is going to change along with new terms. What should the project manager do?
A. Advise the stakeholders that she will keep them in the communication loop for the project.
B. Supply a list of new terms and their definitions.
C. Notify the project management office (PMO).
D. Make sure she maintains her authority as the project manager even though the stakeholders are her friends.
Explanation Some students may think this question has more than one right answer. It does not. There are many things the project manager can do, but what should be done? The company policies are managed by the project management office and the project manager should make sure the stakeholders have clear information by sending them directly to the authority on company policies for project management.
A project manager is managing his second project. It started one month after the first and both are ongoing. Though his first project is small, this one seems to be growing in size every day. As each day passes, the project manager is beginning to feel more and more in need of help. The project manager has recently heard that there was another project in the company last year that is similar to his second project. What should he do?
A. Contact the other project manager and ask for assistance.
B. Obtain historical records and guidance from the project management office (PMO).
C. Wait to see if the project is impacted by the growth in scope.
D. Make sure the scope for the project is agreed to by all the stakeholders.
Explanation There are many things the project manager could do. Choice A is not the best choice, as the other project manager might not be an experienced mentor. His advice might not be adequate to help this project manager. Choice C is reactive, while a project manager should be proactive. Choice D is not the best choice. It would be helpful, but does not specifically address the issues in this situation. If the PMO is contacted, the project manager can receive the knowledge of many project managers, historical information from many projects, and have the assistance of someone whose job it is to help.
The project life cycle differs from the product life cycle in that the project life cycle:
A. Does not incorporate a methodology.
B. Is different for each industry.
C. Can spawn many projects.
D. Describes project management activities.
Explanation The project life cycle does incorporate a methodology-for doing the work-so choice A cannot be best. It is the product life cycle that spawns many projects, so choice C cannot be best. Project management activities are described in the project management process, so choice D cannot be best. The project life cycle is different for each industry, so choice B is the best answer.
Management by objectives works only if:
A. It is supported by management.
B. The rules are written down.
C. The project does not impact the objectives.
D. The project includes the objectives in the project charter.
Explanation The best answer is the need for management to support the objectives.
Your management has decided that all orders will be treated as projects and that project managers will be used to update orders daily, to resolve issues, and to ensure that the customer formally accepts the product within 30 days of completion. Revenue from the individual orders can vary from US $100 to US $150,000. The project manager will not be required to perform planning or provide documentation other than daily status. How would you define this situation?
A. Because each individual order is a temporary endeavor:' each order is a project.
B. This is program management since there are multiple projects involved.
C. This is a recurring process.
D. Orders incurring revenue over $100,000 would be considered projects and would involve project management.
Explanation Because orders are numerous and of short duration, this situation is a process, not a project.
The previous project manager for your project managed it without much project organization. There is a lack of management control and no clearly defined project deliverables. Which of the following would be the BEST choice for getting your project better organized?
A. Adopt a life cycle approach to the project.
B. Develop lessons learned for each phase.
C. Develop specific work plans for each work package.
D. Develop a description of the product of the project.
Explanation Choice B would help improve subsequent phases, but would do nothing for control and deliverables. Choice C would help control each phase, but would not control the integration of the phases into a cohesive whole. Choice D would help, but not help both control and deliverables for each phase. Effective project management requires a life cycle approach to running the project. Choice A is the only answer that covers both control and deliverables.
A project team is working on manufacturing a new product, but they are having difficulty creating a project charter. What is the BEST description of the real problem?
A. They have not identified the project objectives.
B. They are working on a process and not a project.
C. The end date has not been set.
D. They have not identified the product of the project.
Explanation This work has entered the manufacturing stage. Manufacturing is generally considered a process, not a project, as it is not temporary. A project charter will not be appropriate here.
One of your team members informs you that he does not know which of the many projects he is working on is the most important. Who should determine the priorities among projects in a company?
A. The project manager
B. The project management team
C. The project management office
D. The team
Explanation Because the question talks about priorities among projects, this cannot be the role of the project manager (choice A), the project management team (choice B), or the project team (choice D).
A market demand, a business need, and/or legal requirement are examples of:
A. Reasons to hire a project manager.
B. Reasons projects are initiated.
C. Reasons people or businesses become stakeholders.
D. Reasons to sponsor a project.
Explanation These are all reasons projects are initiated.
Operational work is different from project work in that it is:
C. On-going and repetitive.
D. A part of every project activity.
Explanation Operational work is that which is ongoing to sustain an organization.
Company procedures require the creation of a lessons learned document. Which of the following is the BEST use of lessons learned?
A. Historical records for future projects
B. Planning record for the current project
C. Informing the team about what the project manager has done
D. Informing the team about the project management plan
Explanation Notice that this question asks about the use of a tool of project management. Many people can learn from a book what a lessons learned document is, but questions like this can more readily be answered if you actually use the tool and know from experience its value. Ask yourself about the other tools of project management. Why are they beneficial? The BEST use of lessons learned is choice A. There are other tools that are better for accomplishing the things listed in the other choices.
Lessons learned are BEST completed by:
A. The project manager.
B. The team.
C. The sponsor.
D. The stakeholders.
Explanation The best answer is stakeholders, as their input is critical for collecting all the lessons learned on each project. The term stakeholders includes all the other groups.
Consideration of ongoing operations and maintenance is crucially important to products of projects. Ongoing operations and maintenance should:
A. Be included as activities to be performed during project closure.
B. Have a separate phase in the project life cycle, because a large portion of life cycle costs is devoted to maintenance and operations.
C. Not be viewed as part of a project. A project is temporary with a definite beginning and end.
D. Be viewed as a separate project.
Explanation Remember the definition of a project: temporary and unique. Operations and maintenance are considered on-going activities, not temporary. Therefore, such work is not considered a project or part of a project.
What is a program?
A. An initiative set up by management
B. A means to gain benefits and control of related projects
C. A group of unrelated projects managed in a coordinated way
D. A government regulation
Explanation Did you select choice C? If so, you missed the word unrelated:' Programs are groups of related projects.
A company is making an effort to improve its project performance and create historical records of past projects. What is the BEST way to accomplish this?
A. Create project management plans
B. Create lessons learned.
C. Create network diagrams
D. Create status reports
Explanation Lessons learned help to avoid future pitfalls and use the good ideas of past projects. This leads to improvements in future projects.
Project Management Processes CHAPTER THREE
In which project management process group is the detailed project budget created?
B. Before the project management process
Explanation Notice the use of the word "detailed." Such a budget is created during the planning process group.
The project charter is created in which project management process group?
Explanation The project charter is needed before planning and execution of the work can begin.
The project team has just completed the initial project schedule and budget. The NEXT thing to do is:
A. Identify risks.
B. Begin iterations.
C. Determine communications requirements.
D. Create a bar (Gantt) chart.
Explanation Communications requirements and quality standards are needed before risks (especially risks relating to communications and quality) can be determined (choice A). Iterations (choice B) cannot begin until the risks are identified, qualified, quantified, and responses developed. These then create the need to revise the WBS and other parts of the project management plan. A bar chart (choice D) would have been done during the creation of the schedule, so it cannot be the next thing. Of the choices listed, determine communications requirements (choice C) is the best.
A detailed project schedule can be created only after creating the:
A. Project budget.
B. Work breakdown structure.
C. Project management plan.
D. Detailed risk assessment.
Explanation In the project management process, the project budget (choice A), project management plan (choice C), and detailed risk assessment (choice D) come after the schedule. The only answer that could be an input is the WBS.
The person who should be in control of the project during project planning is the:
A. Project manager.
B. Team member.
C. Functional manager.
Explanation The project manager should be named early in the project, during project initiating if possible.
Which of the following is NOT an input to the initiating process group?
A. Company processes
B. Company culture
C. Historical WBSs
D. Project scope statement
Explanation Notice the question asks which is NOT an input to the initiating process group. Did you read it correctly? The project scope statement (choice D) is an output of the planning process group. Did you select choice A? Companies should have processes in place for hiring resources, reporting, and managing risks on projects (to name only a few). Does yours?
The project sponsor has just signed the project charter. What is the NEXT thing to do?
A. Begin to complete work packages.
B. Verify Scope.
C. Start integrated change control.
D. Start to create management plans.
Explanation The project charter is created during the initiating process group. Therefore the question is asking what is done next in either the initiating process group or the planning process group. For this type of question, you should look for the choice that occurs closest to the process group you are in. Choice A is done during the executing process group. Choices Band C are done during the monitoring and controlling process group. Choice D is the best choice, as it is part of the planning process group.
The high-level project schedule constraints have just been determined. What project management process group are you in?
D. Monitoring and controlling
Explanation High-level project constraints are determined during the initiating process group.
The WBS and WBS dictionary are completed. The project team has begun working on identifying risks. The sponsor contacts the project manager, requesting that the responsibility assignment matrix be issued. The project has a budget of US $100,000 and is taking place in three countries
using 14 human resources. There is little risk expected for the project, and the project manager has managed many projects similar to this one. What is the NEXT thing to do?
A. Understand the experience of the sponsor on similar projects.
B. Create an activity list.
C. Make sure the project scope is defined.
D. Complete risk management and issue the responsibility assignment matrix.
Explanation Look at the order of planning the project the team has chosen. Though understanding the experience of the sponsor (choice A) might sound like a good idea, the sponsor is a stakeholder and understanding the stakeholders is part of stakeholder analysis. That should have occurred before the creation of a WBS. In planning the project, the project scope is defined (choice C is another way of saying finalize the project scope statement) and would come before creating a WBS. Choice D cannot be best, as that work does not come next in the process. Other work, like creating a network diagram, should be completed before risk management can effectively be done. The only correct choice is the activity list (choice B).
A project manager does not have much time to spend planning before the mandatory start date arrives. He therefore wants to move through planning as effectively as possible. Which of the following would you recommend?
A. Make sure you have a signed project charter and then start the WBS.
B. Create an activity list before creating a network diagram.
C. Document all the known risks before you document the high-level assumptions.
D. Finalize the quality management plan before you determine quality metrics.
Explanation This question is asking which of the choices is the most effective way to move through the planning process. Choice A skips the important steps of defining the scope and other activities. High-level assumptions are determined prior to risk identification in the planning process, making choice C incorrect. Metrics are part of the quality management plan, making choice D incorrect. Choice B is best, as the activity list is created immediately before the network diagram.
The BEST time to assign a project manager to a project is during:
Explanation The project manager must be assigned during initiating.
A project manager gets a call from a team member notifying him that there is a variance between the speed of a system on the project and the desired or planned speed. The project manager is surprised because that performance measurement was not identified in planning. If the project manager then evaluates whether the variance warrants a response, he is in what project management process?
C. Monitoring and controlling
Explanation Even though the measurement was not identified in planning, the project manager would still have to investigate the variance and determine if it is important. Therefore, the project manager is in the project monitoring and controlling process group.
A team member notifies the project manager that the activities comprising a work package are no longer appropriate. It would be BEST for the project manager to be in what part of the project management process?
A. Corrective action
B. Integrated change control
C. Monitoring and controlling
D. Project closing
Explanation If you chose another part of the project management process, you probably forgot that the situation needs to be evaluated by the project manager before recommending a change or entering integrated change control.
During a team meeting, a team member asks about the measurements that will be used on the project to judge performance. The team member feels that some of the measures related to activities assigned him are not valid measurements. The project is BEST considered in what part of the project management process?
B. Monitoring and controlling
Explanation This situation does not describe an actual measurement (a monitoring and controlling activity) but rather a meeting occurring during project executing talking about control issues.
Which of the following would be the MOST appropriate thing to do during the initiating process group?
A. Create a detailed description of the project deliverables.
B. Get familiar with the company culture and structure as it relates to the project.
C. Identify the root cause of problems.
D. Ensure all project management processes are complete.
Explanation Choice A occurs during the planning process group as part of creating the project scope statement. Since you must already have problems in order to determine their root cause, choice C must occur during the monitoring and controlling process group, not initiating. Choice D occurs during the closing process group.
Which of the following is a characteristic of project management processes?
Explanation As the project life cycle progresses, more information becomes available, allowing the team to manage the project to a more detailed level.
Which project management process group normally takes the MOST project time and resources?
Explanation Doing the actual work will normally take the MOST project time and resources.
All of the following must be performed during project initiating EXCEPT:
A. Identify and document business needs.
B. Create a project scope statement.
C. Divide large projects into phases.
D. Accumulate and evaluate historical information.
Explanation A project scope statement (choice B) is generally created in project planning.
Closure includes all of the following EXCEPT:
A. Determining performance measures.
B. Turning over the product of the project.
C. Documenting the degree to which each project phase was properly closed after its completion.
D. Updating the company's organizational process assets.
Explanation Performance measures are determined earlier in the project so they can be used to measure progress during the project, making choice A the only correct answer to this question.
The first phase of your project has come to an end. What should you ensure is done BEFORE beginning the next phase?
A. Verify that the resources are available for the next phase.
B. Check the project's progress compared to its baselines.
C. Confirm that the phase has reached its objectives, and have its deliverables formally accepted.
D. Recommend corrective action to bring the project results in line with project expectations.
Explanation A phase or project must be formally closed and accepted.
In which process group does the team measure and analyze the work being done on the project?
C. Monitoring and controlling
Explanation During the monitoring and controlling process group, project performance is measured, and needed changes are identified and approved.
Which process groups must be included in every project?
A. Planning, executing, and closing
B. Initiating, planning, and executing
C. Initiating, planning, executing, monitoring and controlling, and closing
D. Planning, executing, and monitoring and controlling
Explanation All five process groups are addressed in each project. It is the responsibility of the project manager to determine the level of attention to give to each process group.
Control Schedule, Report Performance, and Administer Procurements are parts of which process group?
D. Monitoring and controlling
Explanation All of these processes are part of monitoring and controlling.
Which process group focuses on completing the requirements of the project?
Explanation The executing process group is where work is done to produce the product of the project.
All of the following occur during the planning process group EXCEPT:
A. Develop Project Charter.
B. Create WBS.
C. Estimate Costs.
D. Sequence Activities.
Explanation Develop Project Charter (choice A) occurs in the initiating process group.
Integration Management CHAPTER FOUR Answer
Effective project integration usually requires an emphasis on:
A. The personal careers of the team members.
B. Timely updates to the project management plan.
C. Effective communications at key interface points.
D. Product control.
Explanation This question is asking for the most important of the choices. Think about what is involved in integration: project management plan development, project management plan execution, and integrated change control. In order to integrate the project components into a cohesive whole, communication is key when one activity will interface with another, one team member will interface with another, and any other form of interfacing will occur. Choices Band D are parts of the monitoring and controlling process group, while integration includes more than control. Choice A falls under project management plan execution.
The need for is one of the major driving forces for communication in a project.
Explanation The project manager is an integrator. This is a question about your role as an integrator and communicator.
Which of the following describes the BEST use of historical records from previous projects:
A. Estimating, life cycle costing, and project planning
B. Risk management, estimating, and creating lessons learned
C. Project planning, estimating, and creating a status report
D. Estimating, risk management, and project planning
Explanation Historical records are not generally used for life cycle costing (choice A), lessons learned (choice B), or creating status reports (choice C).
When it comes to changes, the project manager's attention is BEST given to:
A. Making changes.
B. Tracking and recording changes.
C. Informing the sponsor of changes.
D. Preventing unnecessary changes.
Explanation Project managers should be proactive. The only proactive answer here is preventing unnecessary changes.
A project manager has managed four projects for the company and is being considered to join the project management office team. The following is discovered during the evaluation of his performance. The project manager's first project had an ending cost variance of -500, used two critical resources, needed to rework the project charter during project executing and was ranked 14th in priority within the company. The second project finished with a schedule variance of +100, was completed with a vastly compressed schedule, and received a letter of recommendation from the sponsor, but the product of the project was not used. The third project had 23 percent more changes than expected, had an SPI of 0.90, and 25 open items in the issue log when the project was completed.
Each of these projects had a cost budget of US $1,000 and 20 to 28 percent more changes than others of its size. The project management office decided not to add this project manager to the team. Which of the following BEST describes why this might have happened?
A. The project manager has only managed low-priority projects, and he had to compress the schedule, showing that he does not have the skill to work in the project management office.
B. Issue logs should not be used on projects of this size, showing that the project manager does not have the knowledge to work in a project management office.
C. The project manager did not effectively involve the stakeholders, showing that he does not have the knowledge to work in the project management office.
D. The project manger had two critical resources on his team and still needed to rework the project charter, showing that he does not have the discipline to work in the project management office.
Explanation This is a very confusing question. Notice all the distracters that mayor may not
be relevant? Since most project schedules are compressed by the project manager during project planning, choice A is not a logical reason and so cannot be the best choice. Issue logs can be used on smaller projects, which means choice B is not the best choice. The number of critical (or hard-to-get) resources noted in choice D has no bearing on the need to rework the project charter. Since it does not make logical sense, it cannot be the best choice. Take another look at the second and third projects. In the second project, the product of the project was not used. This implies many things, including the possibilities that either the project manager did not identify the requirements of all the stakeholders or that the business need of the project changed dramatically and the project manager did not notice. This indicates a major flaw in the project manager's abilities. In the third project, there were 25 concerns of the stakeholders that were not addressed before the project was completed. Again, this shows a major lack of project management knowledge. The needs of the stakeholders and not just the sponsor must be taken into account on all projects. This makes choice C the best choice.
All of the following are parts of an effective change management plan EXCEPT:
B. Standards for reports
D. Lessons learned
Explanation A change management plan includes the processes and procedures that allow smooth evaluation and tracking of changes. Lessons learned (choice D) are reviews of the processes and procedures to improve them; they are not part of the system.
A work authorization system can be used to:
A. Manage who does each activity.
B. Manage what time and in what sequence work is done.
C. Manage when each activity is done.
D. Manage who does each activity and when it is done.
Explanation Who does each activity (choices A and D) is managed with the schedule and responsibility assignment matrices. The project schedule manages when each activity is done (choice C). A work authorization system is used to coordinate when and in what order the work is performed so that work and people may properly interface with other work and other people.
A project is plagued by changes to the project charter. Who has the primary responsibility to decide if these changes are necessary?
A. The project manager
B. The project team
C. The sponsor
D. The stakeholders
Explanation The sponsor issues the project charter and so he or she should help the project manager control changes to the charter. The primary responsibility lies with the sponsor.
Integration is done by the:
A. Project manager.
Explanation Integration is a key responsibility of the project manager, so choice A is the best answer.
Which of the following BEST describes the project manager's role as an integrator?
A. Help team members become familiar with the project.
B. Put all the pieces of a project into a cohesive whole.
C. Put all the pieces of a project into a program.
D. Get all team members together into a cohesive whole.
Explanation Integration refers to combining activities, not team members (choice D). Could the project manager smash two team members together and create one big team member? (I just wanted to see if you are still laughing about this PMP thing!)
Approved corrective action is an input to:
A. Verify Scope.
B. Direct and Manage Project Execution.
C. Develop Project Charter.
D. Develop Schedule.
Explanation Choice B is the only correct response.
Double declining balance is a form of:
A. Decelerated depreciation.
B. Straight line depreciation.
C. Accelerated depreciation.
D. Life cycle costing.
Explanation We need to know that double declining balance is a form of depreciation. That eliminates choice D. We also know that double declining balance is a form of accelerated depreciation, eliminating choices A and B. Therefore, C is the correct response.
You are a new project manager who has never managed a project before. You have been asked to plan a new project. It would be BEST in this situation to rely on during planning in order to improve your chance of success.
A. Your intuition and training
B. Stakeholder analysis
C. Historical information
D. Configuration management
Explanation Because you have no experience, you will have to look at the experience of others. This information is captured in the historical records from previous projects.
Which of the following BEST describes a project management plan?
A. A printout from project management software
B. A bar chart
C. Risk, staffing, process improvement, and other management plans
D. The project scope
Explanation The project management plan contains more than just a bar or Gantt chart and the project manager's plan for completing the work. It includes all the management plans for the project.
You are taking over a project and determine the following: Activity B has an early finish (EF) of day 3, a late finish (LF) of day 6, and an early start (ES) of day 2. Activity L is being done by a hard-to-get resource. The cost performance index (CPI) is 1.1, and the schedule performance index (SPI) is 0.8. Based on this information, what would you be more concerned about?
Explanation You may not understand this question until you review the rest of the book. Come back to it. This question tries to integrate a lot of information and test your ability to discern
what information is relevant to the question. Though some figures to calculate float are provided (choice A), there is no information to say that the float is a problem. Most projects have hard-to-get resources (choice B). The question does not give an indication that having hard-to-get resources is a problem. CPI (choice C) is greater than one, so cost is not something to worry about. SPI is less than one, so choice D is the best answer.
A project management plan should be realistic in order to be used to manage the project. Which of the following is the BEST method to achieve a realistic project management plan?
A. Sponsor creates the project management plan based on input from the project manager.
B. Functional manager creates the project management plan based on input from the project manager.
C. Project manager creates the project management plan based on input from senior management.
D. Project manager creates the project management plan based on input from the team.
Explanation If we were to rephrase the question, it is asking, Who creates the project management plan? The best answer is that project management plans are created by the project manager but require input from the team.
You are taking over a project during the planning process group and discover that six individuals have signed the project charter. Which of the following should MOST concern you?
A. Who will be a member of the change control board
B. Spending more time on configuration management
C. Getting a single project sponsor
D. Determining the reporting structure
Explanation This situation implies that there are six areas concerned with this project. In addition to added communications requirements, you should be concerned with competing needs and requirements impacting your efforts on configuration management.
The project charter for a project was approved for planning and you have just been assigned as project manager. Realizing that project planning is an ongoing effort throughout the project, which processes are you MOST likely to combine?
A. Create WBS and Define Activities
B. Estimate Activity Durations and Develop Schedule
C. Develop Human Resource Plan and Estimate Costs
D. Estimate Costs and Determine Budget
Explanation The Create WBS process consists of subdividing major project deliverables (scope) into smaller, more manageable work packages. The Define Activities process defines the activities that must take place to produce those deliverables.
All of the following are parts of Direct and Manage Project Execution EXCEPT:
A. Identifying changes.
B. Using a work breakdown structure.
C. Implementing corrective actions.
D. Setting up a project control system.
Explanation A project control system (choice D) is set up during the planning process group, not during project executing. Did choice B confuse you? A WBS is created in project planning, but can
be used to help manage the project during project executing. The wording here was not creating the
WBS but using the WBS:'
A project manager is appointed to head a highly technical project in an area with which this person has limited familiarity. The project manager delegates the processes of Develop Schedule, Estimate Costs, Define Activities, and Estimate Activity Resources to various project team members, and basically serves as an occasional referee and coordinator of activities. The results of this approach are likely to be:
A. A team functioning throughout the project at a very high level, demonstrating creativity and commitment.
B. A team that initially experiences some amounts of confusion, but that after a period of time becomes a cohesive and effective unit.
C. A team that is not highly productive, but that stays together because of the work environment created by the project manager.
D. A team that is characterized by poor performance, low morale, high levels of conflict, and high turnover.
Explanation A project manager must manage a project. If all activities are delegated, chaos ensues and team members will spend more time jockeying for position than completing activities.
You are in the middle of executing a major modification to an existing product when you learn that the resources promised at the beginning of the project are not available. The BEST thing to do is to:
A. Show how the resources were originally promised to your project.
B. Replan the project without the resources.
C. Explain the impact if the promised resources are not made available.
D. Crash the project.
Explanation Choices B and D are essentially delaying the situation. Instead, the project manager should try to prevent the situation by showing the consequences if the resources are not available (choice C). This is a more effective strategy than saying but you gave them to me:' as in choice A.
You have been assigned to manage the development of an organization's first Web site. The site will be highly complex and interactive, and neither your project team nor the client has much experience with Web site development.
The timeline is extremely aggressive. Any delay will be costly for both your firm and the client. You have a project sponsor and have achieved agreement and Sign-off on both the project charter and the project management plan. Client personnel have been kept fully informed of the project's progress through status reports and regular meetings. The project is on schedule and within the budget, and a final perfunctory review has been scheduled.
Suddenly you hear that the entire effort may be cancelled because the product developed is totally unacceptable. What is the MOST likely cause of this situation?
A. A key stakeholder was not adequately involved in the project.
B. The project charter and project management plan were not thoroughly explained or adequately reviewed by the client.
C. Communications arrangements were inadequate and did not provide the required information to interested parties.
D. The project sponsor failed to provide adequate support for the project.
Explanation A single high-level executive can end an entire project if he or she is not satisfied with the results, even if that person has, by choice, been only tangentially involved in the project. It is critical to ensure that all of the final decision makers have been identified early in a project in order to ensure that their concerns are addressed.
The project manager has just received a change from the customer that does not affect the project schedule and is easy to complete. What should the project manager do FIRST?
A. Make the change happen as soon as possible.
B. Contact the project sponsor for permission.
C. Go to the change control board.
D. Evaluate the impacts on other project constraints.
Explanation The other impacts to the project should be evaluated first. Such impacts include scope, cost, quality, risk, resources, and customer satisfaction. Once these are evaluated, the change control board, if one exists, can approve or deny the change.
Your company just won a major new project. It will begin in three months and is valued at US $2,000,000. You are the project manager for an existing project. What is the FIRST thing you should do once you hear of the new project?
A. Ask management how the new project will use resources.
B. Resource level your project.
C. Crash your project.
D. Ask management how the new project will affect your project.
Explanation As you work on a project, you need to constantly reevaluate the project objectives and how the project relates to other concurrent projects. Is your project still in line with corporate objectives? If the other project will impact yours, you need to be proactive and work on options now.
You are a project manager who was just assigned to take over a project from another project manager who is leaving the company. The previous project manager tells you that the project is on schedule, but only because he has constantly pushed the team to perform. What is the FIRST thing you should do as the new project manager?
A. Check risk status.
B. Check cost performance.
C. Determine a management strategy.
D. Tell the team your objectives.
Explanation Before you can do anything else, you have to know what YOU are going to do. Developing the management strategy will provide the framework for all the rest of the choices presented and the other activities that need to be done.
You are assigned as the project manager in the middle of the project. The project is within the baselines, but the customer is not happy with the performance of the project. What is the FIRST thing you should do?
A. Discuss it with the project team.
B. Recalculate baselines.
C. Renegotiate the contract.
D. Meet with the customer.
Explanation First, you need to find out why the customer is not happy. Then meet with the team and determine options.
It is the middle of the project when the project manager is informed by her scheduler that the project control limits are secure. That same morning she receives a note from a team member about a problem he is having. The note says, "This activity is driving me crazy, and the manager of the accounting department won't help me until the activity's float is in jeopardy." In addition, the project manager has e-mails from a minor stakeholder and 14 e-mails from team members. While she is reading the e-mails, a team member walks into the project manager's office to tell her a corrective action was implemented by a team member from the project management office, but was not documented. What should the project manager do NEXT?
A. Report the documentation violation to the project management office, evaluate the security of the control limits, and review the e-mailing rules in the communications management plan.
B. Clarify the reasoning behind documentation being a problem, get the accounting department to assist the team member, and respond to the minor stakeholder.
C. Add the implemented corrective action to the historical records, discuss the value of documentation at the next team meeting, and smooth the team member with the accounting department problem.
D. Find out who caused the problem with the accounting department, respond to the minor stakeholder before responding to the other e-mails, and review the process listed in the communications plan for reporting concerns with the team member having the documentation problem.
Explanation Notice how many situations are thrown at you in this question. It is important to practice reading through questions to discover what is important and what is just background information. In this question, the only thing relevant was the corrective action taken. Once you discover what the issue is, look at the choices to find out which is best for addressing the issue. What is the issue here? Did you realize that the team member's note is about a non-critical path activity? (Until the project float is in jeopardy means that there is float and, thus, it is not on the critical path.) So is the issue the non-critical path activity or the documentation? You might disagree with the logic, but in this case the answer is the documentation. In the real world, problems often repeat. Without a record of what was done, there is no opportunity to consider the same solution for future problems. Documentation is critical to projects. Because documentation becomes part of the historical records database, choice C is correct.
The client demands changes to the product specification that will add only two weeks to the critical path. Which of the following is the BEST thing for the project manager to do?
A. Compress the schedule to recover the two weeks.
B. Cut scope to recover the two weeks.
C. Consult with the sponsor about options.
D. Advise the client of the impact of the change.
Explanation Do you remember what to do when there is a change? Evaluate first. You wouldn't take action before getting approval, so compressing the schedule (choice A) and cutting scope (choice
B) would happen after choices C and/or D. You would not go to the customer before going to your internal management, so choice D is not the correct thing to do next. The next step is to discuss options with the sponsor (choice C).
During project executing, the project manager determines that a change is needed to material purchased for the project. The project manager calls a meeting of the team to plan how to make the change. This is an example of:
A. Management by objectives.
B. Lack of a change management plan.
C. Good team relations.
D. Lack of a clear work breakdown structure.
Explanation The project manager is asking how to make a change. The procedures, forms, sign- offs, and other similar requirements for handling changes should have already been defined in the change management plan (choice B). Because they weren't, the project manager will waste valuable work time trying to figure it out after the fact.
The project was going well when all of a sudden there were changes to the project coming from multiple stakeholders. After all the changes were determined, the project manager spent time with all the stakeholders to find out why there were changes and to discover any more.
The project work has quieted down when a team member casually mentions to the project manager that he added functionality to a product of the project. Do not worry he says, I did not impact time, cost, or quality! What should a project manager do FIRST?
A. Ask the team member how the need for the functionality was determined.
B. Hold a meeting to review the team member's completed work.
C. Look for other added functionality.
D. Ask the team member how he knows there is no time, cost, or quality impact.
Explanation Notice that the first paragraph is extraneous. Also notice that the question states that the change has already been made. Your actions will be different than if the change had not been made. It is the project manager's job to investigate impacts, as the project manager is the only one who can tell how a change impacts the project as a whole. Choices A, B, and C could all be done, but they do not address the immediate concern. Choice D is the best answer since it begins the project manager's analysis of the impacts to the project as a whole by finding out what analysis has already been done. He can then determine how he must finalize the analysis as it applies to the entire
project. Can you see that?
You are asked to prepare a budget for completing a project that was started last year and then shelved for six months. All the following would be included in the budget EXCEPT:
A. Fixed costs.
B. Sunk costs.
C. Direct costs.
D. Variable costs.
Explanation Sunk costs (choice B) are expended costs. The rule is that they should not be considered when deciding whether to continue with a troubled project.
Which of the following sequences represents straight line depreciation?
D. $160, $140, $120
Explanation Straight line depreciation uses the same amount each time period.
This project is chartered to determine new ways to extend the product life of one of the company's medium-producing products. The project manager comes from the engineering department, and the team comes from product management and marketing departments.
The project scope statement and project planning are completed when a stakeholder notifies the team that there is a better way to complete one of the work packages. They even supply a technical review letter from their department proving that the new way to complete the work package will actually be faster than the old way.
The project manager has had similar experiences with this department on other projects, and was expecting this to happen on this project. What is the FIRST thing the project manager should do?
A. Contact the department and complain again about their missing the deadline for submission of scope.
B. Look for how this schedule change will impact the cost to complete the work package and the quality of the product of the work package.
C. See if there is a way to change from a matrix environment to a functional organization so as to eliminate all the interference from other departments.
D. Ask the department if they have any other changes.
Explanation Choice A could be done, but notice that it is not proactive? It would be helpful to get to the root cause of why this department always comes up with such ideas or changes after the project begins. However, this is not the immediate problem, the change is, and therefore choice A is not best. The type of project organization described is a matrix organization. There is not anything inherently wrong with such an organization, nor is there anything wrong in this particular situation that would require it to be changed, so choice C cannot be best. The department's history makes choice D something that should definitely be done, but the proposed change needs more immediate attention. Only choice B begins integrated change control by looking at the impact of one change on other project constraints.
Project A has an internal rate of return (IRR) of 21 percent. Project B has an IRR of 7 percent. Project C has an IRR of 31 percent. Project D has an IRR of 19 percent. Which of these would be the BEST project?
A. Project A
B. Project B
C. Project C
D. Project D
Explanation Remember, the internal rate of return is similar to the interest rate you get from the bank. The higher the rate is, the better the return.
An output of the Close Project or Phase process is the creation of:
A. Project archives.
B. A project charter.
C. A project management plan.
D. A risk analysis plan.
Explanation The project charter (choice B) is created in initiating. The project management plan (choice C) is an output of the planning process group. You have not seen the term risk analysis plan (choice D) in this book, so it is unlikely to be the best answer.
All of the following would occur during the Close Project or Phase process EXCEPT:
A. Creating lessons learned.
B. Formal acceptance.
C. Reducing resource spending.
D. Performing benefit cost analysis.
Explanation Benefit cost analysis (choice D) is done earlier in the project to help select between alternatives. All the other choices are done during closing. Therefore choice D must be the best answer.
Which of the following is included in a project charter?
A. A risk management strategy
B. Work package estimates
C. Detailed resource estimates
D. The business need for the project
Explanation This question may seem simple, but it is really testing if you know what is a correct project charter. Choices A and B do not come until project management planning, after the project charter. A project charter may include the names of some resources (the project manager, for example), but not detailed resources (choice C).
A project manager is trying to convince management to use more formal project management procedures and has decided to start improving the company's project management by obtaining a project charter. Which of the following BEST describes why the project charter would help the project manager?
A. It describes the details of what needs to be done.
B. It lists the names of all team members.
C. It gives the project manager authority.
D. It describes the project's history.
Explanation The exam will ask questions like this to make sure you know the benefits you should be getting out of the process and tools of project management. The details of what needs to be done (choice A) are found in the WBS dictionary. The names of team members (choice B) are included
in the responsibility assignment matrix and other documents. Project history (choice D) is found in
the lessons learned and other project documents.
Linear programming is an example of what type of project selection criteria?
A. Constrained optimization
B. Comparative approach
C. Benefit measurement
D. Impact analysis
Explanation Constrained optimization uses mathematical models. Linear programming is a mathematical model.
You have created the project charter, but could not get it approved. Your manager and his boss have asked that the project begin immediately. Which of the following is the BEST thing to do?
A. Set up an integrated change control process.
B. Show your manager the impact of proceeding without approval.
C. Focus on completing projects that have signed project charters.
D. Start work on only the critical path activities.
Explanation The best thing to do would be to show the impact. This is the only choice that prevents future problems-always the best choice. The other choices just pretend the problem does not exist.
The engineering department has uncovered a problem with the cost accounting system and has asked the systems department to analyze what is wrong and fix the problem. You are a project manager working with the cost accounting programs on another project. Management has issued a change request to the change control board to add the new work to your project.
Your existing project has a cost performance index (CPI) of 1.2 and a schedule performance index (SPI) of 1.3 so you have some room to add work without delaying your existing project or going over budget. However, you cannot see how the new work fits within the project charter for your existing project. After some analysis, you determine that the new work and existing work do not overlap and can be done concurrently. They also require different skill sets. Which of the
following is the BEST thing to do?
A. Develop a project charter.
B. Reestimate the project schedule with input from the engineering department.
C. Verify the scope of the new work with the help of the stakeholders.
D. Identify specific changes to the existing work.
Explanation How long did it take you to read this question? Expect long-winded questions on the exam. Take another look at the choices before you continue reading. Did you notice that each of the choices occurs during a different part of the project management process?
This question is essentially asking if the new work should be added to the existing project. There may be many business reasons to try to do this, but from a project management perspective, major additions to the project are generally discouraged. In this case, the question is trying to imply that the new work is a self-contained unit of work, has no overlap with the existing work and needs a different skill set. Therefore, it is generally best to make it a new project. The first step to answering this question is to realize that the work should be a separate project. The second step is to look at the choices and see which relates to initiating a new project. Choice B sounds like the best choice, but only if you did not realize that the new work should be a separate project. Choice C is done during project monitoring and controlling. Choice D is done during project executing. The project charter is developed in the initiating process group.
All technical work is completed on the project. Which of the following remains to be done?
A. Verify Scope
B. Plan Risk Responses
C. Create a staffing management plan
D. Complete lessons learned
Explanation Did you pick choice A? Then you may have forgotten that the Verify Scope process is done during the monitoring and controlling process group, not the closing process group. The other plans (choices Band C) are done earlier in the project. The lessons learned (choice D) can only be completed after the work is completed.
Your company can accept one of three possible projects. Project A has a net present value (NPV) of US $30,000 and will take six years to complete. Project B has an NPV of US $60,000 and will take three years to complete. Project C has an NPV of US $90,000 and will take four years to complete. Based on this information, which project would you pick?
A. They all have the same value.
B. Project A
C. Project B
D. Project C
Explanation Remember, project length is incorporated when computing NPV. You would choose the project that provides the most value, in this case the project with the highest NPV.
Scope Management CHAPTER FIVE Answer
A work breakdown structure numbering system allows the project staff to:
A. Systematically estimate costs of work breakdown structure elements.
B. Provide project justification.
C. Identify the level at which individual elements are found.
D. Use it in project management software.
Explanation The numbering system allows you to quickly identify the level in the work breakdown structure where the specific element is found. It also helps to locate the element in the WBS dictionary.
The work breakdown structure can BEST be thought of as an effective aid for communications.
B. Project manager
Explanation The term stakeholder encompasses all the other choices. In this case, it is the best answer since the WBS can be used (but does not need to be used) as a communications tool for all stakeholders to see what is included in the project.
Which of the following is a KEY output of the Verify Scope process?
A. A more complete scope management plan
B. Customer acceptance of project deliverables
C. Improved schedule estimates
D. An improved project management information system
Explanation The output of the Verify Scope process is customer acceptance of project deliverables. The other choices all happen during project planning, well before the time that the Verify Scope process takes place.
During project executing, a team member comes to the project manager because he is not sure of what work he needs to accomplish on the project. Which of the following documents contain detailed descriptions of work packages?
A. WBS dictionary
B. Activity list
C. Project scope statement
D. Scope management plan
Explanation Activity lists (choice B) may list the work package they relate to, but they do not contain detailed descriptions of the work packages. The project scope statement (choice C) defines the project scope, but it does not describe the work a team member is assigned. The scope management plan (choice D) describes how scope will be planned, managed, and controlled. It does not include a description of each work package. The WBS dictionary defines each element in the WBS. Therefore, descriptions of the work packages are in the WBS dictionary.
During what part of the project management process is the project scope statement created?
D. Monitoring and controlling
Explanation The project scope statement is an output of the Define Scope process, which occurs during project planning.
The program was planned years ago, before there was a massive introduction of new technology.
While planning the next project in this program, the project manager has expanded the scope management plan because as a project becomes more complex, the level of uncertainty in the scope:
A. Remains the same.
C. Decreases then increases.
Explanation Not all questions will be difficult. The level of uncertainty in scope increases based on the scale of effort required to identify all the scope. For larger projects it is more difficult to catch everything.
During a meeting with some of the project stakeholders, the project manager is asked to add work to the project scope. The project manager had access to correspondence about the project before the project charter was signed and remembers that the project sponsor specifically denied funding for the scope mentioned by these stakeholders. The BEST thing for the project manager to do is to:
A. Let the sponsor know of the stakeholders' request.
B. Evaluate the impact of adding the scope.
C. Tell the stakeholders the scope cannot be added.
D. Add the work if there is time available in the project schedule.
Explanation Based on the information presented, there is no reason to try to convince the sponsor to add the work (choices B and D). Though one could let the sponsor know (choice A) the best choice would be to say no. A better choice would be to find the root cause of the problem, but that choice is not listed here.
A new project manager is being mentored by a more experienced certified project management professional (PMP). The new project manager is having difficulty finding enough time to manage the project because the product and project scope are being progressively elaborated. The PMP- certified project manager mentions that the basic tools for project management, such as a work breakdown structure, can be used during project executing to assist the project manager. For which of the following can a work breakdown structure be used?
A. Communicating with the customer
B. Showing calendar dates for each work package
C. Showing the functional managers for each team member
D. Showing the business need for the project
Explanation A WBS does not show dates or responsibility assignments (choices B and C). Those are included on the bar chart and possibly in the communications management plan. The business need (choice D) is shown in the project charter. Never thought that a WBS could be shown to the customer? Made you think! Of course it could be used for that purpose.
In this situation, the product and project scope are being fine tuned. It would save the project manager time to effectively manage progressive elaboration if the WBS was used to assist. The WBS helps ensure everyone understands the scope of the work.
During a project team meeting, a team member suggests an enhancement to the scope that is beyond the scope of the project charter. The project manager points out that the team needs to concentrate on completing all the work and only the work required. This is an example of:
A. Change management process.
B. Scope management.
C. Quality analysis.
D. Scope decomposition.
Explanation The team member is suggesting an enhancement that is outside the scope of the project charter. Scope management involves focusing on doing the work and only the work in the project management plan that meets the objectives of the project charter. The project manager is performing scope management.
When should the Verify Scope process be done?
A. At the end of the project
B. At the beginning of the project
C. At the end of each phase of the project
D. During the planning processes
Explanation The Verify Scope process occurs during the monitoring and controlling process group, so choices A, B, and D cannot be correct. Verify Scope is done at the end of each phase (the end of design, implementation, etc.), making choice C the best answer.
The project is mostly complete. The project has a schedule variance of 300 and a cost variance of -900. All but one of the quality control inspections have been completed and all have met the quality requirements. All items in the issue log have been resolved. Many of the resources have been released. The sponsor is about to call a meeting to obtain product verification when the customer notifies the project manager that they want to make a major change to the scope. The project manager should:
A. Meet with the project team to determine if this change can be made.
B. Ask the customer for a description of the change.
C. Explain that the change cannot be made at this point in the process.
D. Inform management.
Explanation Do not jump into the problem without thinking. The customer only notified the project manager that they want to make a change:' They did not describe the change. The project manager would need to understand the nature of the change and have time to evaluate the impact of the change before doing anything else. Of these choices, the first thing to do is to determine what the change is (choice B) and then meet with the team (choice A), but only if their input is required. The project manager should not just say no (choice C) until he knows more about the possible change.
He also should not go to management (choice D) without more information.
You have just joined the project management office after five years of working on projects. One of the things you want to introduce to your company is the need to create and utilize WBSs. Some of the project managers are angry that you are asking them to do extra work. Which of the following would be the BEST thing you could tell the project managers to convince them to use WBSs?
A. Tell them it will prevent work from slipping through the cracks.
B. Tell them that it is not needed.
C. Tell them it is required only if the project involves contracts.
D. Tell them it is the only way to identify risks.
Explanation Choice C is not generally true. Every project must have a WBS. Risks can be identified using various methods. Therefore, choice D is an incorrect statement and not the best answer.
Choice A, preventing work from being forgotten (slipping through the cracks) is ONE of the reasons the tool is used.
A new project manager has asked you for advice on creating a work breakdown structure. After you explain the process to her, she asks you what software she should use to create the WBS and what she should do with it when she is finished creating it. You might respond that it is not the picture that is the most valuable result of creating a WBS. It is:
A. A bar chart.
B. Team buy-in.
D. A list of risks.
Explanation The WBS is an input to all of these choices. However, team buy-in (choice B) is a direct result of the WBS creation process, while the other choices use the WBS to assist in their completion. The best answer is choice B.
To manage a project effectively, work should be broken down into small pieces. Which of the following does NOT describe how far to decompose the work?
A. Until it has a meaningful conclusion
B. Until it cannot be logically subdivided further
C. Until it can be done by one person
D. Until it can be realistically estimated
Explanation The lowest level of the WBS is a work package, which can be performed by more than one person.
A project manager may use to make sure the team members clearly know what work is included in each of their work packages.
A. The project scope statement
B. The product scope
C. A WBS dictionary
D. A schedule
Explanation The project scope statement (choice A) describes work on a high-level basis. Work packages need to be specific to enable team members to complete their work with less gold plating. The product scope (choice B) would not tell team members what work is assigned to them. The team should have a copy of the schedule (choice D), but a schedule will not show them what work is included in each of their work packages. Work packages are described in the WBS dictionary (choice C). NOTE: Do not think of the WBS dictionary as a dictionary of terms.
A project manager has just been assigned to a new project and has been given the project charter.
The FIRST thing the project manager must do is:
A. Create a project scope statement.
B. Confirm that all the stakeholders have had input into the scope.
C. Analyze project risk.
D. Begin work on a project management plan.
Explanation This question can be tricky, especially if you have spent so much time studying that
you have forgotten some good project management practices. A quick look at Rita's Process Chart in this book might draw you to conclude that the FIRST thing would be to start planning. Wouldn't it be smart to make sure what you have in the project charter is clear and complete before moving on? This is why choice B is the best choice.
The construction phase of a new software product is near completion. The next phases are testing and implementation. The project is two weeks ahead of schedule. What should the project manager be MOST concerned with before moving on to the final phase?
A. Verify Scope
B. Control Quality
C. Create Performance Reports
D. Control Costs
Explanation The Verify Scope process deals with acceptance by the customer. Without this acceptance, you will not be able to move into the next project phase.
You are managing a six-month project and have held biweekly meetings with your project stakeholders. After five-and-a-half months of work, the project is on schedule and budget, but the stakeholders are not satisfied with the deliverables. This situation will delay the project completion by one month. The MOST important process that could have prevented this situation is:
A. Monitor and Control Risks.
B. Control Schedule.
C. Define Scope.
D. Control Scope.
Explanation Choices A, B, and D are processes in the monitoring and controlling process group. This situation asks how to prevent the problem. This would have been done during the planning processes. The project deliverables are defined in the Define Scope process (choice C), which is a part of project planning. Good planning reduces the likelihood of a situation like the one described by including the right people and spending adequate time in clarifying the project scope.
All of the following are parts of the scope baseline EXCEPT the:
A. Scope management plan.
B. Project scope statement.
C. Work breakdown structure.
D. WBS dictionary.
Explanation The scope management plan is not part of the scope baseline.
One of the stakeholders on the project contacts the project manager to discuss some additional scope they would like to add to the project. The project manager asks for details in writing and then works through the Control Scope process. What should the project manager do NEXT when the evaluation of the requested scope is complete?
A. Ask the stakeholder if there are any more changes expected.
B. Complete integrated change control.
C. Make sure the impact of the change is understood by the stakeholder.
D. Find out the root cause of why the scope was not discovered during project planning.
Explanation Notice that there are many things that the project manager could do listed in the choices. The question asks what is the BEST thing to do NEXT. Though they are great things to do, choices A, C, and D are not next. Management of the change is not complete when the Control Scope process is completed. It is important to look at the impact of the change on other parts of the project such as time and cost. Therefore, choice B is the best thing to do next, probably followed by C and then D and A.
During the completion of project work, the sponsor asks the project manager to report on how the project is going. In order to prepare the report, the project manager asks all the team members what percent complete their work is. There is one team member who has been hard to manage from the beginning. In response to being asked what percent complete he is, the team member asks, Percent complete of what? Being tired of such comments, the project manager reports to the team member's boss that the team member is not cooperating. Which of the following is MOST likely the real problem?
A. The project manager did not get buy-in from the manager for the resources on the project.
B. The project manager did not create an adequate reward system for team members to improve their cooperation.
C. The project manager should have had a meeting with the team member's boss the first time the team member caused trouble.
D. The project manager does not have work packages.
Explanation Is this a hard question? The whole discussion of the team member and his actions is a distracter. The real problem is not that the team member is being uncooperative. He is asking a question that many team members want to ask in the real world. How can I tell you how things are going if I do not know what work I am being asked to do? The real problem is the lack of a WBS and work packages; otherwise the team member would not have to ask such a question. Choice A cannot be the answer because the project manager is not losing resources (what is implied by getting the manager's buy-in). Though a reward system (choice B) would help with cooperation, the real problem here is not cooperation. Choice C cannot be the answer because it does not solve the problem at hand (the team member not knowing what he is to do). It solves another problem. If you chose C, be very careful! You can get 10 to 20 questions wrong on the exam simply because you do not see the real problem!
The preparation of the scope baseline can BEST be described as involving:
A. The functional managers.
B. The project team.
C. All the stakeholders.
D. The project expediter.
Explanation After the customer's input, the performing organization's project team is responsible for scope baseline preparation. The scope baseline includes the WBS, WBS dictionary, and project scope statement.
Which of the following is an output of the Collect Requirements process?
A. Requirements traceability matrix
B. Project scope statement
C. Work breakdown structure
D. Change requests
Explanation The project scope statement (choice B) is an output of the Define Scope process. The work breakdown structure (choice C) is an output of the Create WBS process. Change requests (choice D) are an output of the Verify Scope and Control Scope processes.
A scope change has been suggested by one of the stakeholders on the project. After careful consideration and a lot of arguing, the change control board has decided to reject the change. What should the project manager do?
A. Support the stakeholder by asking the board for the reason for the rejection.
B. Suggest to the stakeholder that the next change they request will be approved. C. Record the change request and its result.
D. Advise the change control board to make sure they create approval processes before the next change is proposed.
Explanation One could do choice A, but there is no reason to think that the board's rejection would not contain an explanation already, since providing that information is commonly done. Suggesting a change process that circumvents the change control board's authority (choice B) is not ethical. There is no reason to think that approval processes are not already in place (choice D). A rejected change should be recorded for historical purposes, in case the idea is resurrected later, and for other reasons.
A project manager's scope management efforts are being audited. The cost performance index (CPI) on the project is 1.13, and the benefit cost ratio (BCR) is 1.2. The project scope was created by the team and stakeholders. Requirements on the project have been changing throughout the project.
No matter what the project manager has tried to accomplish in managing the project, which of the following is he MOST likely to face in the future?
A. Having to cut costs on the project and increase benefits
B. Making sure the customer approved the project scope
C. Not being able to measure completion of the product of the project
D. Having to add resources to the project
Explanation There are many pieces of data in this question that are distracters from the real issue. Though it is common to have to cut costs (choice A) and add resources to a project (choice D), nothing in the question should lead you to think these will be required in this situation. Customers do not generally approve the project scope (what you are going to do to complete their requirements); instead, they approve the product scope (their requirements), so choice B cannot be best. Since the requirements are a measure of the completion of the product of the project (choice C), not having completed requirements makes such measurement impossible. This is why choice C is the best choice.
Verify Scope is closely related to:
A. Perform Quality Control.
B. Sequence Activities.
C. Perform Quality Assurance.
D. Time Management.
Explanation Perform Quality Control checks for correctness, and Verify Scope checks for acceptance.
Which of the following can create the MOST misinterpretation in the project scope statement?
A. Imprecise language
B. Poor pattern, structure, and chronological order
C. Small variation in size of work packages or detail of work
D. Too much detail
Explanation Much of the work on the project is dictated by the project scope statement. Any imprecision in such a key document will lead to differing interpretations.
Which of the following is CORRECT in regard to the Control Scope process?
A. Effective scope definition can lead to a more complete project scope statement.
B. The Control Scope process must be done before scope planning.
C. The Scope Control process must be integrated with other control processes.
D. Controlling the schedule is the most effective way of controlling scope.
Explanation Though it is a correct statement, choice A cannot be the answer because it does not
deal with control. Since scope planning occurs before the Control Scope process, choice B cannot be the answer. Since controlling the schedule is not the best way to control scope, choice D is not the best answer. The control processes do not act in isolation. A change to one will most likely affect the others. Therefore, choice C is the best answer.
Which of the following BEST describes the Verify Scope process?
A. It provides assurances that the deliverable meets the specifications, is an input to the project management plan, and is an output of Perform Quality Control.
B. It ensures that the deliverable is completed on time, ensures customer acceptance, and shows that the deliverable meets specifications.
C. It ensures customer acceptance, shows that the deliverable meets specifications, and provides a chance for differences of opinion to come to light.
D. It is an output of Perform Quality Control, occurs before Define Scope, and ensures customer
Explanation Since the project management plan is completed before the Verify Scope process, choice A cannot be best. Since Verify Scope does not deal with time, but rather acceptance, choice B cannot be best. Since the Verify Scope process does not occur before the Define Scope process, choice D cannot be best. Only the statements in choice C are completely correct, making that the best answer.
Which of the following BEST describes product analysis?
A. Working with the customer to determine the product description
B. Mathematically analyzing the quality desired for the project
C. Gaining a better understanding of the product of the project in order to create the project scope statement
D. Determining if the quality standard on the project can be met
Explanation Since you need to have a product description before you can do product analysis, choice A cannot be best. Choice B is related to Plan Quality. Choice D is Perform Quality Assurance.
Time Management CHAPTER SIX
To control the schedule, a project manager is reanalyzing the project to predict project duration. She does this by analyzing the sequence of activities with the least amount of scheduling flexibility. What technique is she using?
A. Critical path method
C. Precedence diagramming
D. Work breakdown structure
Explanation There are only two choices related to scheduling: A and C. Choice C, however, is a diagramming technique that deals with the relationship between activities, not schedule flexibility.
A dependency requiring that design be completed before manufacturing can start is an example of a:
A. Discretionary dependency.
B. External dependency.
C. Mandatory dependency.
D. Scope dependency.
Explanation Since the dependency is required, it could not be discretionary (choice A) and therefore must be mandatory. No mention is made that the dependency comes from a source outside the project, so external (choice B) is not correct. Scope dependency (choice D) is not a defined term. The key word in this question is requires:' The question defines a mandatory dependency.
Which of the following are GENERALLY illustrated BETTER by bar charts than network diagrams?
A. Logical relationships
B. Critical paths
C. Resource trade-offs
D. Progress or status
Explanation The bar chart (or Gantt chart) is designed to show a relationship to time. This is best used when demonstrating progress or status as a factor of time.
If the optimistic estimate for an activity is 12 days, and the pessimistic estimate is 18 days, what is the standard deviation of this activity?
Explanation The standard deviation is computed by (P - 0)/6. Therefore, the answer is (18 - 12)/6 = 6/6 = 1.
A heuristic is BEST described as a:
A. Control tool.
B. Scheduling method.
C. Planning tool.
D. Rule of thumb.
Explanation A heuristic is a rule of thumb. Examples are cost per line of code, cost per square foot of floor space, etc.
A. The amount of time an activity can be delayed without delaying the project finish date.
B. The amount of time an activity can be delayed without delaying the early start date of its successor.
C. Waiting time.
D. The product of a forward and backward pass.
Explanation Total float and free float (choices A and B) are the time an activity can be delayed without impacting the entire project or the next activity. Critical path method (choice D) is a network analysis technique, not waiting time. Choice C is the correct answer.
Which of the following is the BEST project management tool to use to determine the longest time the project will take?
B. Network diagram
C. Bar chart
D. Project charter
Explanation The bar chart (choice C) may show an end date, but it is not used to determine dates and show progress. The project charter (choice D) may include any required end dates, but not a logical determination of how long the project will take. The network diagram (choice B) takes the work packages from the work breakdown structure (choice A) and adds dependencies. The dependencies allow us to look at the various paths through the diagram. The longest duration path is the critical path. Choice B is the best answer.
Which of the following is CORRECT?
A. The critical path helps prove how long the project will take.
B. There can be only one critical path.
C. The network diagram will change every time the end date changes.
D. A project can never have negative float.
Explanation This question tests your knowledge about a number of topics. There can often be more than one critical path (choice B) but you might adjust to decrease risk and have only one critical
path. Choice C uses the word will. The network diagram may change or it may not, depending on
the amount of schedule reserve and the reason for the change to the schedule. You can have negative float (choice D) if you are behind schedule. Only choice A is correct.
What is the duration of a milestone?
A. Shorter than the duration of the longest activity
B. Shorter than the activity it represents
C. There is no duration
D. Same length as the activity it represents
Explanation A milestone shows the completion of a series of activities or work packages. Therefore, it takes no time of its own. With this in mind, choice C is the best answer.
Which of the following BEST describes the relationship between standard deviation and risk?
B. Standard deviation tells you if the estimate is accurate.
C. Standard deviation tells you how unsure the estimate is.
D. Standard deviation tells you if the estimate includes a pad.
Explanation Choice A is not best, as the standard deviation tells you the amount of uncertainty or risk involved in the estimate for the activity. An estimate can have a wide range (choice B) and still be accurate if the item estimated includes risks. Choice D cannot be the best answer since there is no such thing as a pad in proper project management. An estimate might be inflated, but it is because of risks, not padding.
The float of an activity is determined by:
A. Performing a Monte Carlo analysis.
B. Determining the waiting time between activities.
C. Determining lag.
D. Determining the amount of time the activity can be delayed before it delays the critical path.
Explanation This question does not specify what type of float. Total float is the amount of time an activity can be delayed without impacting the end date of the project. Free float is the amount of
time an activity can be delayed without impacting the early start of the next activity. The only choice matching either of these definitions is choice D.
A project has three critical paths. Which of the following BEST describes how this affects the project?
A. It makes it easier to manage.
B. It increases the project risk.
C. It requires more people.
D. It makes it more expensive.
Explanation Though having three critical paths COULD require more people (choice C) or cost more (choice D), the answer that is definitely and always true is choice B. Because you need to manage three critical paths, there is more risk that something could happen to delay the project.
If project time and cost are not as important as the number of resources used each month, which of the following is the BEST thing to do?
A. Perform a Monte Carlo analysis.
B. Fast track the project.
C. Perform resource leveling.
D. Analyze the life cycle costs.
Explanation Fast tracking (choice B) would affect time and cost. Monte Carlo analysis and life cycle costs (choices A and D) do not directly deal with resources. Leveling (choice C) is the only choice
that will definitely affect resources.
When would a milestone chart be used instead of a bar chart?
A. Project planning
B. Reporting to team members
C. Reporting to management
D. Risk analysis
Explanation Project planning (choice A) would use both types of charts. Team members (choice B) need to see details and so they need a bar chart rather than a milestone chart. Risk analysis (choice D) COULD make use of both charts. A milestone chart is used instead of a bar chart for any situation where you want to report in a less detailed way (choice C). Bar charts can scare people with their complexity and often show too much detail to be worthwhile on a management level. Milestone charts are more effective for reporting to management.
Your project management plan results in a project schedule that is too long. If the project network diagram cannot change but you have extra personnel resources, what is the BEST thing to do?
A. Fast track the project.
B. Level the resources.
C. Crash the project.
D. Monte Carlo analysis.
Explanation Leveling resources (choice B) generally extends the schedule. Monte Carlo analysis (choice D) does not directly address the constraints of this situation. To compress the schedule, you could either crash or fast track. However, the situation says that the network diagram cannot change. This eliminates the fast tracking option (choice A), leaving choice C as the best answer.
Which of the following is the BEST thing to do to try to complete a project two days earlier?
A. Tell senior management that the project's critical path does not allow the project to be finished earlier.
B. Tell your boss.
C. Meet with the team and look for options for crashing or fast tracking the critical path.
D. Work hard and see what the project status is next month.
Explanation This is another question that asks about problem solving. Only choice C relates to evaluate:' Choices B and D do not try to solve the real problem. Choice A is just an untrue statement.
In attempting to complete the project faster, the project manager looks at the cost associated with crashing each activity. The BEST approach to crashing would also include looking at the:
A. Risk impact of crashing each activity.
B. Customer's opinion of which activities to crash.
C. Boss's opinion of which activities to crash and in which order.
D. Project life cycle phase in which the activity is due to occur.
Explanation You mayor may not need your customer's (choice B) or your boss's (choice C) input, but you will definitely need to include an analysis of risk. Choice A is broader than choice D and therefore is better.
Which of the following processes includes asking team members about the time estimates for their activities and reaching agreement on the calendar date for each activity?
A. Sequence Activities
B. Develop Schedule
C. Define Scope
D. Develop Project Charter
Explanation By the time this process is taking place, Sequence Activities (choice A), Define Scope (choice C), and Develop Project Charter (choice D) would be completed.
A project manager is in the middle of the executing process of a very large construction project when he discovers that the time needed to complete the project is longer than the time available. What is the BEST thing to do?
A. Cut product scope.
B. Meet with management and tell them that the required date cannot be met.
C. Work overtime.
D. Determine options for schedule compression and present management with his recommended option.
Explanation This question tests whether you know how to solve problems, especially if you are one of those project managers who has not realized that an unrealistic schedule is something you should deal with before beginning work. Since cutting product scope affects the customer, choice A has a great negative effect and is therefore not best. A project manager's job is to determine options for meeting any end date or time, therefore choice B cannot be correct. Working overtime (choice C) is expensive and unnecessary when there are so many other choices that could be selected first. Choice D could have the least negative effect on the project.
During project planning, you estimate the time needed for each activity and then add the estimates to create the project estimate. You commit to completing the project by this date. What is wrong with this scenario?
A. The team did not create the estimate, and estimating takes too long using that method.
B. The team did not create the estimate, and a network diagram was not used.
C. The estimate is too long and should be created by management.
D. The project estimate should be the same as the customer's required completion date.
Explanation Time estimates for the activities should be created by the team and should not be added. Some activities may take place concurrently. Therefore, choice B must be the correct answer.
You are a project manager on a US $5,000,000 software development project. While working with your project team to develop a network diagram, you notice a series of activities that can be worked in parallel but must finish in a specific sequence. What type of activity sequencing method is required for these activities?
A. Precedence diagramming method
B. Arrow diagramming method
C. Critical path method
D. Operational diagramming method
Explanation The question implies a finish-to-finish relationship between activities. The arrow diagramming method (choice B) does not support these types of relationships. Choice C is not a diagramming method, and choice D is a made-up term.
You are a project manager on a US $5,000,000 software development project. While working with your project team to develop a network diagram, your data architects suggest that quality could be improved if the data model is approved by senior management before moving on to other design elements. They support this suggestion with an article from a leading software development journal. Which of the following BEST describes what this type of input is called?
A. Mandatory dependency
B. Discretionary dependency
C. External dependency
Explanation The situation is neither mandatory (choice A), nor driven by an external source (choice C). A rule of thumb (choice D) is something that can be used consistently. This situation is a unique occurrence. The situation is a suggestion of a preferred method, so choice B is the best answer.
Based on the following, if you needed to shorten the duration of the project, what activity would you try to shorten?
Activity / Preceding Activity / Duration In Weeks
Start ....... None ........ 0
A ............. Start ........ 1
B ............. Start ......... 2
C ............. Start ......... 6
D ............. A ............. 10
E ............. B,C ........... 1
F ............. C .............. 2
G ............ D .............. 3
H ............ E .............. 9
I ............. F .............. 1
End ........ G,H,I ......... 0
A. Activity B
B. Activity D
C. Activity H
D. Activity C
Explanation This is one of the two-stage questions you will find on the exam. First you need to draw the network diagram and find the critical path, and then make a decision. The network diagram would be:
Paths Duration in Weeks
Start, A, D, G, End 14
Start, B, E, H, End 12
Start, C, E, H, End 16
Start, C, F, I, End 9
Many people immediately look for the longest duration activity on the project to cut. Here activity D is the longest, at 10 weeks. However, that activity is not on the critical path, and cutting it would not shorten the project's duration. You must change the critical path. In this case, both activity C and activity H are on the critical path. If you have a choice, all things being equal, choose the earlier option. Therefore, activity C (choice D) is the best answer.
You have a project with the following activities: Activity A takes 40 hours and can start after the project starts. Activity B takes 25 hours and should happen after the project starts. Activity C must happen after activity A and takes 35 hours. Activity D must happen after activities Band C and takes 30 hours. Activity E must take place after activity C and takes 10 hours. Activity F takes place after Activity E and takes 22 hours. Activities F and D are the last activities of the project. Which of the following is TRUE if activity B actually takes 37 hours?
A. The critical path is 67 hours.
B. The critical path changes to Start, B, D, End.
C. The critical path is Start, A, C, E, F, End.
D. The critical path increases by 12 hours.
Explanation Did you notice how difficult this question was to read? Such wording is intentional, to prepare you for interpreting questions on the real exam. Looking at this situation, you see that there are three paths through the network. They are Start, A, C, E, F, End with a duration of 40 + 35 + 10 + 22 = 107; Start, A, C, D, End with a duration of 40 + 35 + 30 = 105; and Start, B, D, End with a duration of 25 + 30 = 55. If the duration of activity B changes from 25 to 37, the activity will take 12 hours longer. As the activity is only on the third path, it will only change the duration of that path from 55 to 55 + 12 = 67 hours. Since the duration of the critical path is 107 hours, the delay with activity B will have no impact on the project timeline or the current critical path.
A project manager has received activity duration estimates from his team. Which of the following does he need in order to complete the Develop Schedule process?
A. Change requests
B. Schedule change control system
C. Recommended corrective actions
Explanation Develop Schedule includes all work and uses all inputs needed to come up with a finalized, realistic schedule. One would need time reserves (choice D) in order to complete a schedule. All of the other items are parts of Control Schedule and occur after Develop Schedule.
A project manager is taking over a project from another project manager during the planning process group. If the new project manager wants to see what the previous project manager planned for managing changes to the schedule, it would be BEST to look at the:
A. Communications management plan.
B. Update management plan.
C. Staffing management plan
D. Schedule management plan.
Explanation Answer D is the most correct answer. The schedule management plan is the repository for plans for schedule changes. Note that choice B is a made-up term.
A project manager is using weighted average duration estimates to perform schedule network analysis. Which type of mathematical analysis is being used?
A. Critical path method
C. Monte Carlo
D. Resource leveling
Explanation PERT uses a weighted average to compute activity durations.
The WBS, estimates for each work package, and the network diagram are completed. Which of the following would be the NEXT thing for the project manager to do?
A. Sequence the activities.
B. Verify that they have the correct scope.
C. Create a preliminary schedule and get the team's approval.
D. Complete risk management.
Explanation Choice A is the same thing as create a network diagram. Choice B is another name for Verify Scope, which is done during the monitoring and controlling process group, not during project planning. Since a schedule is an input to risk management, choice D comes after choice C and so it is not the next thing to do: The only remaining choice is C.
A new product development project has four levels in the work breakdown structure and has been sequenced using the precedence diagramming method. The activity duration estimates have been received. What should be done NEXT?
A. Create an activity list.
B. Begin the work breakdown structure.
C. Finalize the schedule.
D. Compress the schedule.
Explanation The question is really asking, What is done after Estimate Activity Durations? Choices A and B are done before Estimate Activity Durations. Duration compression (choice D) occurs before finalizing the schedule (choice C) and is, therefore, the best answer.
You are a project manager for a new product development project that has four levels in the work breakdown structure. A network diagram has been created, the duration estimates have been compressed, and a schedule has been developed. What time management activity should you do NEXT?
A. Begin Control Schedule.
B. Estimate Activity Resources.
C. Analogously estimate the schedule.
D. Gain approval.
Explanation Notice how this question and the previous one seem very similar. This is intended to prepare you for similar questions on the exam. Choices B and C should have already been completed. The situation described is within the Develop Schedule process of time management. Choice A is the next time management process after Develop Schedule, but the Develop Schedule process is not finished. Final approval (choice D) of the schedule by the stakeholders is needed before one has a project schedule.
A team member from research and development tells you that her work is too creative to provide you with a fixed single estimate for the activity. You both decide to use the labor hours per installation from past projects to predict the future. This is an example of which of the following?
A. Parametric estimating
B. Three-point estimating
C. Analogous estimating
D. Monte Carlo analysis
Explanation Past history is being used to calculate an estimate. Monte Carlo (choice D) relates to what-if analysis. Choice B uses three time estimates per activity. One could use past projects to come up with the estimate (choice C), but the best answer is choice A because an estimate such as hours
per installation is a chief characteristic of parametric estimates.
An activity has an early start (ES) of day 3, a late start (LS) of day 13, an early finish (EF) of day 9, and a late finish (LF) of day 19. The activity:
A. Is on the critical path.
B. Has a lag.
C. Is progressing well.
D. Is not on the critical path.
Explanation The activity described has float because there is a difference between the early start and late start. An activity that has float is probably not on the critical path. There is no information presented about lag (choice B) or progress (choice C), so choice D is the best answer.
The project is calculated to be completed four days after the desired completion date. You do not have access to additional resources. The project is low risk, the benefit cost ratio (BCR) is expected to be 1.6, and the dependencies are preferential. Under these circumstances, what would be the BEST thing to do?
A. Cut resources from an activity.
B. Make more activities concurrent.
C. Move resources from the preferential dependencies to the external dependencies.
D. Remove an activity from the project.
Explanation Cutting resources from an activity (choice A) would not save time, nor would moving resources in the way described (choice C). Removing an activity from the project (choice D) is a possibility, but since the dependencies are preferential and the risk is low, the best choice would be to make more activities concurrent (choice B), as this would have less impact on the project.
A project manager for a small construction company has a project that was budgeted for US $130,000 over a six-week period. According to her schedule, the project should have cost US $60,000 to date. However, it has cost US $90,000 to date. The project is also behind schedule, because the original estimates were not accurate. Who has the PRIMARY responsibility to solve this problem?
A. Project manager
B. Senior management
C. Project sponsor
D. Manager of the project management office
Explanation Did you get lost looking at all the numbers presented in this question? Notice that there are no calculations required, simply an understanding of what the problem is. This question describes schedule management, which is a responsibility of the project manager.
Senior management is complaining that they are not able to easily determine the status of ongoing projects in the organization. Which of the following types of reports would help provide summary information to senior management?
A. Detailed cost estimates
B. Project management plans
C. Bar charts
D. Milestone reports
Explanation Detailed estimates (choice A) have nothing to do with the situation described. Project management plans (choice B) will have more detail than is necessary for the situation described and may distract from the conversation if used in this situation. Bar charts (choice C) are usually only
for the team. The best answer is choice D because milestone reports present the right level of detail for upper management.
Rearranging resources so that a constant number of resources is used each month is called:
D. Fast tracking.
Explanation The key to this question is the phrase constant number used each month. Only leveling, choice C, has such an effect on the schedule.
Which of the following is a benefit of an analogous project estimate?
A. The estimate will be closer to what the work will actually require.
B. It is based on a detailed understanding of what the work requires.
C. It gives the project team an understanding of management's expectations.
D. It helps the project manager determine if the project will meet the schedule.
Explanation Remember for the exam that analogous estimates are considered to be top-down, high-level estimates, even though a high-level or even a definitive estimate can be estimated analogously. Therefore, choices A and B cannot be correct. The project manager needs more than an analogous (high-level) estimate to determine whether or not the project will meet the schedule (choice D). It is a benefit to know management's expectations of how much the project will cost so that any differences between the analogous estimate and the detailed bottom-up estimate can be reconciled in the planning processes. The best choice is C.
During project executing, a large number of changes are made to the project. The project manager should:
A. Wait until all changes are known and print out a new schedule.
B. Make approved changes as needed, but retain the schedule baseline.
C. Make only the changes approved by management.
D. Talk to management before any changes are made.
Explanation A project manager must be more in control of the project than choices C and D reflect. Choice A is a common error many project managers make. Instead, the project manager should be controlling the project throughout the completion of the project.
Cost Management CHAPTER SEVEN
One common way to compute estimate at completion (EAC) is to take the budget at completion (BAC) and:
A. Divide by SPI.
B. Multiply by SPI.
C. Multiply by CPI.
D. Divide by CPI.
Explanation This question is asking for the formula for EAC, which is BAC/CPI. Notice how you will have to remember the formula to get the answer correct.
Estimate at completion (EAC) is a periodic evaluation of:
A. The cost of work completed.
B. The value of work performed.
C. The anticipated total cost at project completion.
D. What it will cost to finish the job.
Explanation When you look at earned value, many of the terms have similar definitions. This could get you into trouble. Since the EAC means the estimate at completion, choice C is the best answer. Choice D is the definition of ETC, estimate to complete.
If earned value (EV) = 350, actual cost (AC) = 400, planned value (PV) = 325, what is cost variance(CV)?
Explanation CV = EV - AC
The customer responsible for overseeing your project asks you to provide a written cost estimate that is 30 percent higher than your estimate of the project's cost. He explains that the budgeting process requires managers to estimate pessimistically to ensure enough money is allocated for projects.
What is the BEST way to handle this?
A. Add the 30 percent as a lump sum contingency fund to handle project risks.
B. Add the 30 percent to your cost estimate by spreading it evenly across all project activities.
C. Create one cost baseline for budget allocation and a second one for the actual project
D. Ask for information on risks that would cause your estimate to be too low.
Explanation Presenting anything besides your original estimate (allocating more to the budget) is inaccurate and calls into question your competence and integrity as a project manager. The customer should list potential changes and risks to your estimate. If the costs and risks are justified, you can increase the budget.
A. Uses bottom-up estimating techniques.
B. Is used most frequently during the executing processes of the project.
C. Uses top-down estimating techniques.
D. Uses actual detailed historical costs.
Explanation Analogous estimating is used most frequently during the planning processes, not the executing processes (choice B). You do not need to use historical costs (choice D) for an analogous estimate. Therefore, choice C is the correct answer.
All of the following are outputs of the Estimate Costs process EXCEPT:
A. An understanding of the cost risk in the work that has been estimated.
B. The prevention of inappropriate changes from being included in the cost baseline.
C. An indication of the range of possible costs for the project.
D. Documentation of any assumptions made during the Estimate Costs process.
Explanation This question is asking, When you finish estimating costs, what do you have? Many people who do not realize that estimates should be in a range pick choice C. Choice B is more correctly part of the cost management plan and the change control system.
The main focus of life cycle costing is to:
A. Estimate installation costs.
B. Estimate the cost of operations and maintenance.
C. Consider installation costs when planning the project costs.
D. Consider operations and maintenance costs in making project decisions.
Explanation Life cycle costing looks at operations and maintenance costs and balances them with the project costs to try to reduce the cost across the entire life of the project.
Cost performance measurement is BEST done through which of the following?
A. Asking for a percent complete from each team member and reporting that in the monthly progress report
B. Calculating earned value and using the indexes and other calculations to report past
performance and forecast future performance
C. Using the 50/50 rule and making sure the life cycle cost is less than the project cost
D. Focusing on the amount expended last month and what will be expended the following month
Explanation Asking percent complete (choice A) is not a best practice since it is usually a guess. Often the easiest work is done first on a project, throwing off any percentage calculations of work remaining. It may be a good thing to use the 50/50 rule, as in choice C. However, the 50/50 rule is not necessarily included in the progress report, and the second part of the sentence is incorrect. The life cycle cost cannot be lower than the project cost, as the life cycle cost includes the project cost. Choice D is often done by inexperienced project managers who know of nothing else. Not only does it provide little information, but also it cannot be used to predict the future. Choice B is the best answer since it looks at the past and uses this information to estimate future costs.
A cost performance index (CPI) of 0.89 means:
A. At this time, we expect the total project to cost 89 percent more than planned.
B. When the project is completed we will have spent 89 percent more than planned.
C. The project is only progressing at 89 percent of the rate planned.
D. The project is only getting 89 cents out of every dollar invested.
Explanation The CPI is less than one, so the situation is bad. Choice D is the best answer.
A schedule performance index (SPI) of 0.76 means:
A. You are over budget.
B. You are ahead of schedule.
C. You are only progressing at 76 percent of the rate originally planned.
D. You are only progressing at 24 percent of the rate originally planned.
Explanation Earned value questions ask for a calculation or an interpretation of the results. See the tricks under this topic in this book.
Which of the following is NOT needed in order to come up with a project estimate?
A. A WBS
B. A network diagram
D. A change control system
Explanation A change control system is not required to obtain estimates, but without the other three choices, you cannot develop the estimates. You need the WBS to define the activities, the network diagram to see the dependencies, and the risks to determine contingencies. NOTE: These are high-level risks, not the detailed risks we identify later in the planning process group.
Which of the following is an example of a parametric estimate?
A. Dollars per module
B. Learning bend
Explanation Parametric estimates use a mathematical model to predict project cost or time.
A rough order of magnitude estimate is made during which project management process group?
Explanation This estimate has a wide range. It is done during project initiating, when very little is known about the project.
A cost baseline is an output of which cost management process?
A. Estimate Activity Resources
B. Estimate Costs
C. Determine Budget
D. Control Costs
Explanation A cost baseline is an output of the Determine Budget process.
During which project management process group are budget forecasts created?
A. Monitoring and controlling
Explanation Budget forecasts are an output of Control Costs, which is part of monitoring and controlling.
Which type of cost is team training?
Explanation You are training the team on skills required for the project. The cost is directly related to the project and thus a direct cost.
Project setup costs are an example of:
A. Variable costs.
B. Fixed costs.
C. Overhead costs.
D. Opportunity costs.
Explanation Setup costs do not change as production on the project changes. Therefore, they are fixed costs.
Value analysis is performed to get:
A. More value from the cost analysis.
B. Management to buy into the project.
C. The team to buy into the project.
D. A less costly way of doing the same work.
Explanation Notice that you need to know the definition of value analysis to answer this question. Also notice that the other choices could be considered correct by someone who does not know the definition.
Who has the cost risk in a fixed price (FP) contract?
A. The team
B. The buyer
C. The seller
Explanation If the costs are more than expected under a fixed price contract, the seller must pay those costs. As explained in the Procurement Management chapter, cost risk refers to the person who will have to pay for the added cost if costs escalate. Because the price is fixed, the seller will have to pay any increased costs out of their profit. Naturally, this does not include increased PRICE due to change orders. A fixed price contract and the PRICE could be changed with change orders.
Which of the following represents the estimated value of the work actually accomplished?
A. Earned value (EV)
B. Planned value (PV)
C. Actual cost (AC)
D. Cost variance (CV)
Explanation It can be confusing to differentiate earned value terms from each other. The definition presented here is for EV or earned value, so choice A is the best choice.
Which of the following are ALL items included in the cost management plan?
A. The level of accuracy needed for estimates, rules for measuring cost performance, specifications for how duration estimates should be stated
B. Specifications for how estimates should be stated, rules for measuring cost performance, the level of accuracy needed for estimates
C. Rules for measuring team performance, the level of accuracy needed for estimates, specifications
for how estimates should be stated
D. Specifications for how estimates should be stated, the level of risk needed for estimates, rules for measuring cost performance
Explanation Every item in choice B accurately describes a part of the cost management plan.
Notice how one word in each of the other options makes the entire choice incorrect. Choice A refers to duration estimates, which are created during the time management process, choice C includes measuring team performance, a part of human resource management, and choice D includes risk.
Your project has a medium amount of risk and is not very well defined. The sponsor hands you a project charter and asks you to confirm that the project can be completed within the project cost budget. What is the BEST method to handle this?
A. Build the estimate in the form of a range of possible results.
B. Ask the team members to help estimate the cost based on the project charter.
C. Based on the information you have, calculate a parametric estimate.
D. Provide an analogous estimate based on past history.
Explanation Accuracy is always important, but since the project charter has just been received, the project has not yet been planned. Therefore, although some of the choices are not blatantly wrong, it is best to estimate in a range.
The cost contingency reserve should be:
A. Hidden to prevent management from disallowing the reserve.
B. Added to each activity to provide the customer with a shorter critical path.
C. Maintained by management to cover cost overruns.
D. Added to the base costs of the project to account for risks.
Explanation Choice A is an inappropriate action. Choice B is an incorrect statement. Choice C describes management reserves. During the risk management process, you determine appropriate cost contingency reserves for risk events. The sum of these reserves should be added to the total project estimate to cover the cost of risk events happening.
The seller tells you that your activities have resulted in an increase in their costs. You should:
A. Recommend a change to the project costs.
B. Have a meeting with management to find out what to do.
C. Ask the seller for supporting information.
D. Deny any wrongdoing.
Explanation This is a professional and social responsibility/procurement/cost question. The situation described involves a claim. The best thing to do would be to get supporting information
to find out what happened and take corrective action for the future. After choice C and negotiation, choice A would most likely occur. Choice D is unethical. Choice B is a meeting with YOUR management and should not occur until you have all the information.
Your cost forecast shows that you will have a cost overrun at the end of the project. Which of the following should you do?
A. Eliminate risks in estimates and reestimate.
B. Meet with the sponsor to find out what work can be done sooner.
C. Cut quality.
D. Decrease scope.
Explanation Look for the choice that would have the least negative impact in this situation. You would not need to meet with the sponsor to do choice B. Choices C and D always have negative effects. The choice with the least negative impact is Choice A.
A new store development project requires the purchase of various equipment, machinery, and furniture. The department responsible for the development recently centralized its external purchasing process and standardized its new order system. In which document can these new procedures be found?
A. Project scope statement
C. Staffing management plan
D. Organizational policies
Explanation Procedures for the rental and purchase of supplies and equipment are found in the organizational policies, part of organizational process assets.
Early in the life of your project, you are having a discussion with the sponsor about what estimating techniques should be used. You want a form of expert judgment, but the sponsor argues for analogous estimating. It would be BEST to:
A. Agree to analogous estimating, as it is a form of expert judgment.
B. Suggest life cycle costing as a compromise.
C. Determine why the sponsor wants such an accurate estimate.
D. Try to convince the sponsor to allow expert judgment because it is typically more accurate.
Explanation This is a tricky question. In order to pick the best answer, you need to realize that analogous estimating is a form of expert judgment. Notice choice C, determine why;' sounds like a good idea, but look at the rest of the sentence. Analogous estimates are not accurate. Reading every word of this choice helps eliminate it.
You have just completed the initiating processes of a small project and are moving into the planning processes when a project stakeholder asks you for the project's budget and cost baseline. What should you tell her?
A. The project budget can be found in the project's charter, which has just been completed.
B. The project budget and baseline will not be finalized and accepted until the planning processes are completed.
C. The project management plan will not contain the project's budget and baseline; this is a small project.
D. It is impossible to complete an estimate before the project management plan is created.
Explanation The overall project budget (choice A) may be included in the project charter but
not the detailed costs. Even small projects (choice C) should have a budget and schedule. It is not impossible to create a project budget before the project management plan is created (choice D). It is just not wise, as the budget will not be accurate.
The project manager is allocating overall cost estimates to individual activities to establish a baseline for measuring project performance. What process is this?
A. Cost Management
B. Estimate Costs
C. Determine Budget
D. Control Costs
Explanation Choice A is too general. The estimates are already created in this example, so the answer is not choice B. The answer is not D, Control Costs, because the baseline has not yet been created. The correct answer is choice C.
Monitoring cost expended to date in order to detect variances from the plan occurs during:
A. The creation of the cost change management plan.
B. Recommending corrective actions .
C. Updating the cost baseline.
D. Product performance reviews.
Explanation Recommending corrective actions (choice B) and possible updates to the cost baseline (choice C) result from the activity described; they are not concurrent with it. Monitoring costs are part of change control, but not part of creating the change control system (choice A).
A cost management plan contains a description of:
A. The project costs.
B. How resources are allocated.
C. The budgets and how they were calculated.
D. The WBS level at which earned value will be calculated.
Explanation The exam will ask you what the tools of project management contain in order to test whether you really understand them. This question is almost impossible to guess correctly.
A manufacturing project has a schedule performance index (SPI) of 0.89 and a cost performance index (CPI) of 0.91. Generally, what is the BEST explanation for why this occurred?
A. The scope was changed.
B. A supplier went out of business and a new one needed to be found.
C. Additional equipment needed to be purchased.
D. A critical path activity took longer and needed more labor hours to complete.
Explanation To answer this question, you must look for a choice that would take longer and cost more. If you picked choice A, reread it. It says scope was changed, not necessarily added to. If the change was to reduce the scope, it might also have reduced cost. Though it would take time to handle the event described in choice B, the impacted activity might not be on the critical path and thus might not affect time. Choice C would definitely add cost, but not necessarily time. Only choice D would negatively affect both time and cost.
Although the stakeholders thought there was enough money in the budget, halfway through the project the cost performance index (CPI) is 0.7. To determine the root cause, several stakeholders audit the project and discover the project cost budget was estimated analogously. Although the activity estimates add up to the project estimate, the stakeholders think something was missing in how the estimate was completed. Which of the following describes what was missing?
A. Estimated costs should be used to measure CPI.
B. SPI should be used, not CPI.
C. Bottom-up estimating should have been used.
D. Past history was not taken into account.
Explanation Actual costs are used to measure CPI, and there is no reason to use SPI in this situation, so choices A and B are not correct. Using past history (choice D) is another way of saying analogous. The best way to estimate is bottom-up (choice C). Such estimating would have improved the overall quality of the estimate.
Earned value analysis is an example of:
A. Performance reporting.
B. Planning control.
C. Ishikawa diagrams.
D. Integrating the project components into a whole.
Explanation Earned value analysis is a great reporting tool. With it, you can show where you stand on budget and schedule as well as provide forecasts for the rest of the project.
You are about to take over a project from another project manager and find out the following information about the project. Activity Z has an early start (ES) of day 15 and a late start (LS) of day 20. Activity Z is a difficult activity. The cost performance index (CPI) is 1.1. The schedule performance index (SPI) is 0.8. There are 11 stakeholders on the project. Based on this information, which of the following would you be the MOST concerned about?
D. The number of available resources
Explanation This is one of those questions that combines topics from various knowledge areas. Did you fall into the trap of calculating the float for Z? The amount of float for one activity and the number of stakeholders does not tell you anything in this case, so choices Band D cannot be the best answers. The CPI is greater than one and the SPI is less than one. Therefore, the thing to be most worried about would be schedule.
The difference between the cost baseline and the cost budget can be BEST described as:
A. The management reserve.
B. The contingency reserve.
C. The project cost estimate.
D. The cost account.
Explanation Cost accounts are included in the project cost estimate, and the contingency reserve is added to that to come up with the cost baseline. Thereafter the management reserve is added to come up with the cost budget. Therefore, only choice A is correct.
You provide a project cost estimate for the project to the project sponsor. He is unhappy with the estimate, because he thinks the price should be lower. He asks you to cut 15 percent off the project estimate. What should you do?
A. Start the project and constantly look for cost savings.
B. Tell all the team members to cut 15 percent from their estimates.
C. Inform the sponsor of the activities to be cut.
D. Add additional resources with low hourly rates.
Explanation This question is full of choices that are not correct project management actions. If you picked the wrong answer, look again at the choices and try to determine what you are missing. Whatever it is, it will show up more than once on the real exam!
To answer the question, you must first realize that it is never appropriate for a project manager to just cut estimates across the board (choice B). The project manager should have created an estimate with realistic work package estimates that do not include padding. Then, if costs must be decreased, the project manager can look to cut quality, decrease risk, cut scope, or use cheaper resources (and at the same time closely monitor the impact of changes on the project schedule).
One of the worst things a project manager can do is to start a project while knowing that the time or cost for the project is unrealistic. Therefore, choice A cannot be best. Notice that choice D suggests adding resources. That would cost more. Choice C involves evaluating, looking for alternatives, and then going to the sponsor to tell him the impact of the cost cutting.
Cost risk means:
A. There are risks that will cost the project money.
B. The project is too risky from a cost aspect.
C. There is a risk that project costs could go higher than planned.
D. There is a risk that the cost of the project will be lower than planned.
Explanation Choice A is a correct statement but it is not the definition of cost risk. Choice B refers to the overall cost risk on the project, and assumes that the risk is too great to do the project. The opposite of choice D is correct.
A project manager needs to analyze the project costs to find ways to decrease costs. It would be
BEST if the project manager looks at:
A. Variable costs and fixed costs.
B. Fixed costs and indirect costs.
C. Direct costs and variable costs.
D. Indirect costs and direct costs.
Explanation Choice C describes costs that are directly attributable to the project or that vary with the amount of work accomplished.
Human Resource Management CHAPTER NINE
All of the following are forms of power derived from the project manager's position EXCEPT:
Explanation When someone is given the job of project manager, they will have formal, reward, and penalty power. But just having the position does not make the project manager either a technical or project management expert.
The highest point of Maslow's hierarchy of needs is called:
A. Physiological satisfaction.
B. Attainment of survival
C. Need for association.
Explanation This question is asking which of the FOLLOWING is the highest. Self-actualization is not listed, so the next best choice is esteem.
The halo effect refers to the tendency to:
A. Promote from within.
B. Hire the best.
C. Move people into project management because they are good in their technical fields.
D. Move people into project management because they have had project management training.
Explanation Just because a person is good in his technical field does not mean he or she will also be a good project manager.
The sponsor's role on a project is BEST described as:
A. Helping to plan activities.
B. Helping to prevent unnecessary changes to project objectives.
C. Identifying unnecessary project constraints.
D. Helping to put the project management plan together.
Explanation Though the sponsor may help plan some of the activities (choice A) it is not the sponsor's exclusive duty. Some project constraints (choice C) come from the sponsor, but they should be considered necessary. The project management plan (choice D) is created by the team and approved by the sponsor and other management. Since the project objectives are stated in the project charter and it is the sponsor who issues the project charter, choice B is the correct answer.
Which of the following conflict resolution techniques will generate the MOST lasting solution?
D. Problem solving
Explanation Problem solving normally takes more time, but it gets buy-in from everyone, generating a more lasting solution.
The MOST common causes of conflict on a project are schedules, project priorities, and:
Explanation Know the top four sources (schedule, project priorities, resources, and technical opinions) so you can answer questions such as this one. Don't be fooled because personality is on the list. It is last.
What conflict resolution technique is a project manager using when he says, I cannot deal with this issue now!
A. Problem solving
Explanation Delaying the issue is called withdrawal.
What does a resource histogram show that a responsibility assignment matrix does not?
D. The person in charge of each activity
Explanation Time is shown on a schedule or bar chart. The responsibility assignment matrix maps specific resources against the work packages from the WBS. On a resource histogram, the use of resources is shown individually or by groups over time.
You have just been assigned as project manager for a large telecommunications project. This one- year project is about halfway done. The project team consists of 5 sellers and 20 of your company's employees. You want to understand who is responsible for doing what on the project. Where would you find such information?
A. Responsibility assignment matrix
B. Resource histogram
C. Bar chart
D. Project organization chart
Explanation The responsibility assignment matrix maps who will do the work. The resource histogram (choice B) shows the number of resources used in each time period.
In its pure form, a bar chart (choice C) shows only activity and calendar date. An organizational chart (choice D) shows who reports to whom.
During project planning in a matrix organization, the project manager determines that additional human resources are needed. From whom would he request these resources?
A. Project manager
B. Functional manager
D. Project sponsor
Explanation Did you remember that in a matrix organization, the functional manager controls the resources?
A project manager must publish a project schedule. Activities, start/end times, and resources are identified. What should the project manager do NEXT?
A. Distribute the project schedule according to the communications management plan.
B. Confirm the availability of the resources.
C. Refine the project management plan to reflect more accurate costing information.
D. Publish a bar chart illustrating the timeline.
Explanation The project schedule remains preliminary until resource assignments are confirmed.
During every project team meeting, the project manager asks each team member to describe the work he or she is doing, and the project manager assigns new activities to team members. The length of these meetings has increased because there are many different activities to assign. This could be happening for all the following reasons EXCEPT:
A. Lack of a WBS.
B. Lack of a responsibility assignment matrix.
C. Lack of resource leveling.
D. Lack of team involvement in project planning.
Explanation Resource leveling refers to maintaining the same number of resources on the project for each time period. Leveling has nothing to do with assigning activities or managing meetings.
You are a project manager leading a cross-functional project team in a weak matrix environment.
None of your project team members report to you functionally, and you do not have the ability to directly reward their performance. The project is difficult, involving tight date constraints and challenging quality standards. Which of the following types of project management power will likely be the MOST effective in this circumstance?
Explanation Reward and expert are the best sources of power. Reward is not listed as a choice.
A team member is not performing well on the project because she is inexperienced in system development work. There is no one else available who is better qualified to do the work. What is the BEST solution for the project manager?
A. Consult with the functional manager to determine project completion incentives for the team member.
B. Obtain a new resource more skilled in development work.
C. Arrange for the team member to get training.
D. Allocate some of the project schedule reserve.
Explanation The job of the project manager includes providing or obtaining project -specific training for team members. This kind of training is a direct cost of the project.
A project manager has just found out that a major subcontractor for her project is consistently late delivering work. The project team member responsible for this part of the project does not get along with the subcontractor. To resolve the problem, the project manager says, "You both will have to give up something to solve this problem." What conflict resolution method is she using?
Explanation The act of both parties giving something defines compromise.
A project has several teams. Team C has repeatedly missed deadlines in the past. This has caused team D to have to crash the critical path several times. As the team leader for team D, you should meet with the:
A. Manager of team D.
B. Project manager alone.
C. Project manager and management.
D. Project manager and the leader of team C.
Explanation Those having the problem should resolve the problem. Having had to crash the critical path several times implies that team D has already dealt with these problems. In this case, the two team leaders need to meet. The extent of this situation requires the project manager's involvement as well.
The new project is exciting to both the project manager and the team. This is the project manager's first assignment as project manager. The team has the feeling that they will be able to complete work that has never been tried before. There are 29 people contributing to the product description and the team consists of nine highly experienced experts in their field.
Part of the way through planning, three highly technical team members are disagreeing about the scope of two of the deliverables. One is pointing to the draft WBS and saying that two additional work packages should be added. Another is saying that a particular work package should not even be done. The third team member agrees with both of them. How should the project manager BEST deal with the conflict?
A. He should listen to the differences of opinion, determine the best choice, and implement that choice.
B. He should postpone further discussions, meet with each individual, and determine the best approach.
C. He should listen to the differences of opinions, encourage logical discussions, and facilitate an agreement.
D. He should help the team focus on agreeable aspects of their opinions and build unity by using relaxation techniques and common focus team building.
Explanation Do not get confused by the wordiness of the question. Ask yourself what is the best way to resolve any conflict, and you can get the answer. Most of the situation is a distracter. Problem solving and compromising are the two most important conflict resolution techniques. Conflict management is a key general management skill.
The project is just starting out and consists of people from 14 different departments. The project charter was signed by one person and contains over 30 major requirements that must be met on
the project. The sponsor has informed the project manager that the SPI must be kept between 0.95 and 1.1. A few minutes of investigation resulted in the identification of 34 stakeholders, and the schedule objectives on the project are constrained. A project manager has just been hired. Which
of the following types of project management power will BEST help the project manager gain the cooperation of others?
Explanation Generally, the best forms of power are reward or expert. The project manager has not had time to become a recognized expert in the company (choice D) and reward is not included as a choice here. This leaves formal power (choice A) as the only logical answer.
A project manager is trying to settle a dispute between two team members. One says the systems should be integrated before testing, and the other maintains each system should be tested before integration. The project involves over 30 people, and 12 systems need to be integrated. The sponsor is demanding that integration happens on time. What is the BEST statement the project manager can make to resolve the conflict?
A. Do it my way.
B. Let's calm down and get the job done.
C. Let's deal with this again next week after we all calm down.
D. Let's do limited testing before integration and finish testing after integration.
Explanation Choice D is an example of compromising.
A project is in the middle of the executing processes when a stakeholder suggests a major new change. This change will cause the third major overhaul of the project. At the same time, the project manager discovers that a major work package was not completed because a team member's boss moved him to another project that had a higher priority. Which of the following is the BEST person for the project manger to address these issues with?
A. The team
B. Senior management
C. The customer
D. The sponsor
Explanation It is the sponsor's role to prevent unnecessary changes and to set priorities between projects. The situation described in this question implies that such work is not being done, and the project manager must therefore go to the root of the problem: the sponsor.
What theory proposes that employees' efforts will lead to effective performance and the employees will be rewarded for accomplishments?
A. Conditional reinforcement
B. Malsow's hierarchy
Explanation Employees who believe that their efforts will lead to effective performance and who expect to be rewarded for their accomplishments will stay productive as rewards meet their expectations. This is expectancy theory.
Conflict resolution techniques that may be used on a project include confronting, smoothing, forcing, and:
Explanation There is always the option to simply postpone dealing with the issue until later. This is withdrawing.
The installation project has a CPI of 1.03 and an SPI of 1.0. There are 14 team members, and each team member had input into the final project management plan. The customer has accepted the three deliverables completed so far without complaint and the responsibility assignment matrix has not changed since the project began. The project is being completed in a matrix environment and there are no contracts needed for the project.
Though the sponsor is happy with the status of the project, one of the team members is always complaining about how much time his project work is taking. Which of the following would be the BEST thing for the project manager to do?
A. Review the reward system for the project.
B. Try to improve schedule performance of the project.
C. Meet with the customer to try to extend the schedule.
D. Gain formal acceptance in writing from the customer.
Explanation Improving schedule performance (choice B) relates to getting the project completed sooner. Though it would seem to always be a good idea to improve schedule performance, this project's performance is fine. The schedule has been approved as it is. It would be better for the project manager to spend more time controlling the project to make sure it finishes according to plan than to improve schedule performance.
If you chose C, ask yourself why. There is nothing wrong with the schedule performance of the project that would require an extension. Did you think that the best way to deal with the complaining stakeholder was to give him more time? How do you know the team member's activities are on the critical path?
It is always important to gain formal acceptance from the customer, as it provides an opportunity for the team to check if everything is going well. It is a good idea to get such acceptance in writing. Choice D could be done, but there is a more important problem that takes precedence here.
The only thing glaringly wrong in this situation is that the team member is complaining. If you read the situation completely, you will notice that the team member was involved and approved the project management plan, including his own involvement in the project. Since the responsibility assignment matrix has not changed, the team member has not even been assigned different duties since the project began. There must be something else causing the team member to complain. The project manager should investigate and find out what part of the reward system is ineffective.
The project has been challenging to manage. Everyone has been on edge due to pressure to complete the project on time. Unfortunately, the tension has grown to the point where team meetings have become shouting matches and little work is accomplished during the meetings. One team member asks to be excused from future team meetings, as all the shouting upsets him. Meanwhile, the sponsor has asked to attend team meetings in order to better understand how the project is going and the issues involved in completing the project, and the customer has started discussions about adding scope to the project. In this situation, it would be BEST for the project manager to:
A. Ask the sponsor if the information needed could be sent in a report rather than have her attend the meeting.
B. Inform the team member who asked to be excused from the meetings of the value of communication in such meetings.
C. Create new ground rules for the meetings and introduce them to the team.
D. Hold a team-building exercise that involves all the team members.
Explanation Here is a situation where all four choices could be done. Choice A does not solve the root cause of the problem described. Choice B merely dismisses the concerns of the team member and might cause anger. A team building exercise (choice D) would take planning and so could not be done right away. Remember, the sponsor might be attending the next meeting and at least one team member might not attend because of past problems. The best thing to do would be to set
up new ground rules for the team governing behavior (choice C) and then plan a team-building exercise (choice D).
Project performance appraisals are different from team performance assessments in that project performance appraisals focus on:
A. How an individual team member is performing on the project.
B. An evaluation of the project team's effectiveness.
C. A team-building effort.
D. Reducing the staff turnover rate.
Explanation Questions like this can drive you crazy on the exam because it is easy to get confused. The best thing to do is to look at the two terms used here (project performance appraisals and
team performance assessment) and review in your mind what each means BEFORE looking at the choices. Choices B, C, and D list aspects of team performance assessments. Only choice A is correct. Project performance appraisals deal with how each team member is performing work, rather than how well the team is working together.
A project manager had a complex problem to solve and made a decision about what needed to be done. A few months later, the problem resurfaced. What did the project manager MOST likely not do?
A. Proper risk analysis
B. Confirm that the decision solved the problem
C. Have the project sponsor validate the decision
D. Use an Ishikawa diagram
Explanation Notice the phrasing of this question, most likely NOT do:' Expect to see questions worded on the exam in ways that can cause you to misinterpret them. You will also see questions about things we forget to do in the real world. Who has time:' you might say, to determine if each problem is really solved? One could respond with, Who has time not to do this? Who has time
to deal with the same problem twice? The final steps of problem solving include: implement a decision, review it, and confirm that the decision solved the problem.
The project CPI is 1.02, the benefit cost ratio is 1.7, and the latest round of performance reviews identified few needed adjustments. The project team was co-located into a new building when the project started. Everyone commented on how excited they were to have all new facilities. The sponsor is providing adequate support for the project, and few unidentified risks have occurred. In an attempt to improve performance, the project manager spends part of the project budget on new chairs for the team members and adds the term senior to each team member's job title.
Which of the following is the MOST correct thing that can be said of this project or the project manager?
A. The project manager has misunderstood Herzberg's theory.
B. The project is slowly spending more money than it should. The project manager should begin to watch cost more carefully.
C. The performance review should be handled better to find more adjustments.
D. The project manager should use good judgment to determine which variances are important.
Explanation Choice B includes the concept of cost to trick you into selecting it if you are unsure of the real answer. There is no indication that the costs are trending in any particular direction. There
is no reason to think that performance reviews should turn up more adjustments (choice C). The project manager should always use good judgment (choice D), but nothing in this question talks about judgment regarding variances, so this cannot be the best choice. In this situation, the project manager is making great working conditions better. According to Herzberg's theory, fixing bad working conditions will help you to motivate, but making good working conditions better will not improve motivation. You need to focus on the motivating agents and not the hygiene factors.
You just found out that a major subcontractor for your project consistently provides deliverables late. The subcontractor approaches you and asks you to continue accepting late deliverables in exchange for a decrease in project costs. This offer is an example of:
Explanation Both parties are giving up something. This is a compromise.
The management theory that states that all people can direct their own efforts is:
A. Theory Y.
B. Herzberg's theory.
C. Maslow's hierarchy.
D. Theory X.
Explanation Know the difference between Theory X and Theory Y.
Which of the following leadership traits is MOST important for a project manager?
B. Team building
C. Technical expertise
D. Project control
Explanation As project managers spend 90 percent of their time communicating, the correct choice must be A.
During the first half of the project, five team members left for other projects without being replaced, two team members went on vacation without informing you, and other team members expressed uncertainty about the work they were to complete. In this situation, it is BEST if you create a ______ for the second half of the project?
A. Work breakdown structure
B. Resource histogram
C. Staffing management plan
D. Responsibility assignment matrix
Explanation The staffing management plan describes when resources will be brought onto and taken off the project.
The project manager is looking at the project's resource needs and lessons learned from past projects. This information causes the project manager to be concerned about the ability to acquire enough resources for the project in six months. Which of the following would be the LEAST effective preventive action?
A. Make sure functional managers have a copy of the resource histogram.
B. Show the sponsor the data, and explain the project manager's concern.
C. Determine metrics to use as an early warning sign that resources will not be available.
D. Ask functional managers for their opinions.
Explanation Sending data without pointing out the issue (choice A) does not mean the communication will be adequately decoded by the recipient. The other choices are more effective communication in this instance.
A large project is underway when one of the team members reviews the project status report. He sees that the project is currently running late. As he looks at the report further, he notices that the delay will cause one of his activities to be scheduled during a time he will be out of the country and cannot work on the activity. This is of great concern because he is very committed to the project being successful and he does not want to be the cause of the project being further delayed. What is the BEST THING for him to do?
A. Contact the project manager immediately to provide the project manager with his schedule.
B. Include the information in his next report.
C. Request that the issue be added to the project issue log.
D. Recommend preventive action.
Explanation Notice that this question talks about what the team member should do? It is important for the project manager to understand the team member's role and possibly even instruct team members on how to work on projects and what is expected of them. Choices A, B, and C have one thing in common. They involve the team member asking the project manager to do something. In reality, it may very well be the team member who will come up with a solution (such as decreasing the scope of the activity, fast tracking, or specific suggestions about changes to predecessor activities). Therefore, choice D is the best choice. But ask yourself how you run your projects? Which is better, your way or this way? Lastly, please note that recommended corrective or preventive actions can come from the team or stakeholders in addition to the project manager.
There have been many work packages completed successfully on the project and the sponsor has made some recommendations for improvements. The project is on schedule to meet an aggressive deadline when the successor activity to a critical path activity suffers a major setback. The activity has 14 days of float and is being completed by four people. There are two other team members with the skill set to assist the troubled activity, if needed.
The project manager receives a call that three other team members are attempting to be removed from the project because they do not feel the project can be successful. When the project manager pursues this, she discovers that those team members have issues that have not been addressed.
Which of the following is the BEST thing to do to improve the project?
A. Have the team members immediately assist the troubled activity.
B. Investigate why the project schedule is aggressive.
C. See who can replace the three team members.
D. Create an issue log.
Explanation Sometimes complex problems are caused by not doing simple things. The data in the first paragraph, once you read the choices, is completely extraneous. The troubled activity has float and so does not need immediate attention. Choice A may not be necessary if the amount of float
will not be exceeded by the problem. None of the choices suggest investigating if the amount of float
is enough to cover any delay caused by the trouble, whatever it is. Rather, the choices take you in different directions.
Choice B should have already been done before the project began. Choice C cannot be best, as
replacing team members does not solve the root cause of the problem. Could there be something that the project manager is doing wrong, or could be doing that she is not, that would solve the problem without losing resources? Wouldn't it be more effective to discover the root cause of those team members' concerns so that the problem does not surface again later? The creation of an issue log will let the troubled team members know that their concerns have been heard, are noted, and will be resolved. This might be enough to stop them from leaving and avoid project delays and confusion if new team members must be added. This makes choice D the best answer.
Communications Management CHAPTER TEN
Extensive use of ________ communication is most likely to aid in solving complex problems.
Explanation Written communication allows your words to be documented, and they will go to everyone in the same form. When there are complex problems, you want everyone to receive the same thing.
The work breakdown structure can be an effective aid for communication in which situation(s)?
A. Internal within the project team
B. Internal within the organization
C. External with the customer
D. Internal and external to the project
Explanation The work breakdown structure allows communication vertically and horizontally within the organization as well as outside the project.
The MOST likely result of communication blockers is that:
A. The project is delayed.
B. Trust level is enhanced.
C. Conflict occurs.
D. Senior management is displeased.
Explanation The major result of communication blockers and miscommunication as a whole is conflict.
Communications are often enhanced when the sender the receiver.
A. Speaks up to
B. Uses more physical movements when talking to
C. Talks slowly to
D. Shows concern for the perspective of
Explanation Understanding the receiver's perspective allows you to direct the communication to meet his needs.
Formal written correspondence with the customer is required when:
A. Defects are detected.
B. The customer requests additional work not covered under contract.
C. The project has a schedule slippage that includes changes to the critical path.
D. The project has cost overruns.
Explanation Everything that we do is more formal in a procurement environment than in other project activities. Because choice B deals with contracts, it is the best answer.
A project manager has a problem with a team member's performance. What is BEST form of communication for addressing this problem?
A. Formal written communication
B. Formal verbal communication
C. Informal written communication
D. Informal verbal communication
Explanation The best choice is D. If informal verbal communication does not solve the problem, choice A is the next best choice. This does not mean that you do not keep records of the problem, but this question is asking about communication between two parties.
Communications under a contract should tend toward:
A. Formal written communication.
B. Formal verbal communication.
C. Informal written communication.
D. Informal verbal communication.
Explanation When we talk about contracts, everything that we do is more formal than in other project activities. Records are also important, thus the need for written communication.
The project status report is an example of which type of communication?
A. Formal written communication
B. Formal verbal communication
C. Informal written communication
D. Informal verbal communication
Explanation The project status needs to be known by many people. Therefore, it is best to make this type of communication in writing so that it can be transmitted to many people. It is also formal in that it is an official report of the project. Therefore, choice A is the best answer.
When a project manager is engaged in negotiations, nonverbal communication skills are of:
A. Little importance.
B. Major importance.
C. Importance only when cost and schedule objectives are involved.
D. Importance only to ensure you win the negotiation.
Explanation Nonverbal communication carries 55 percent of the message you send. With this much at stake, nonverbal communication is of major importance.
A large, one-year telecommunications project is about halfway done when you take the place of the previous project manager. The project involves three different sellers and a project team of 30 people. You would like to see the project's communications requirements and what technology is being used to aid in project communications. Where will you find this information?
A. The project management plan
B. The information distribution plan
C. The bar chart
D. The communications management plan
Explanation Although the information is found as a sub-plan to the project management plan (choice A), the communications management plan (choice D) is the best answer because it directly answers the question.
Project information has been distributed according to the communications management plan.
Some project deliverables have been changed in accordance with the project management plan. One stakeholder expressed surprise to the project manager upon hearing of a previously published change to a project deliverable. All stakeholders received the communication containing notification of the change. What should the project manager do?
A. Determine why the stakeholder did not receive the information and let him know when it was published.
B. Ask the functional manager why the stakeholder did not understand his responsibility.
C. Review the communications management plan and make revisions if necessary.
D. Address the situation in the next steering committee meeting so others do not miss published changes.
Explanation Choice A cannot be correct because the question states that all stakeholders received the information. Choices Band D do not address the root cause of the problem. The problem presented here shows that there is something missing in the communications management plan. The best answer is to review the communications management plan in order to prevent future problems and find any instances of similar problems.
Communication is the key to the success of a project. As the project manager, you have three stakeholders with whom you need to communicate. As such, you have six channels of communication. A new stakeholder has been added that you also need to communicate with. How many communications channels do you have now?
Explanation Did you realize that the project manager is part of the communication channels? Therefore, there are actually four stakeholders to begin with and six channels of communication. The question is asking how many total channels of communication you have with a team of five people. The formula is [N x (N-l)]12 or (5 x 4)/2 = 10.
Two people are arguing about what needs to be done to complete a work package. If the project manager wants to know what is going on, she should pay MOST attention to:
A. What is being said and when.
B. What is being said, who is saying it, and the time of day.
C. Physical mannerisms and what is being said.
D. The pitch and tone of the voices, and physical mannerisms.
Explanation Choices C and D both include nonverbal communication, which represents 55 percent of communication. Choice D adds paralingual communication (pitch and tone) and is thus the best choice.
A project manager has a project team consisting of people in four countries. The project is very important to the company, and the project manager is concerned about its success. The length of the project schedule is acceptable. What type of communication should he use?
A. Informal verbal communication
B. Formal written communication
C. Formal verbal communication
D. Informal written communication
Explanation Because of the differences in culture and the distance between team members, formal written communication is needed.
The project status meeting is not going well. Everyone is talking at the same time, there are people who are not participating, and many topics are being discussed at random. Which of the following rules for effective meetings is NOT being adhered to?
A. Demonstrate courtesy and consideration of each other, and control who is allowed to speak.
B. Schedule meetings in advance.
C. Have a purpose for the meeting with the right people in attendance.
D. Create and publish an agenda and a set of rules for controlling the meeting.
Explanation Choice A is not a rule for effective meetings. Since there is no indication that the meeting was not scheduled in advance (choice B) or that there isn't a purpose (choice C), these cannot be the best answers. Discussed at random implies no agenda (choice D). If an agenda is issued beforehand, people will follow the outline and should not need random discussions.
You have just been assigned as project manager for a large manufacturing project. This one-year project is about halfway done. It involves five different sellers and 20 members of your company on the project team. You want to quickly review where the project now stands. Which of the following reports would be the MOST helpful in finding such information?
A. Work status
Explanation The key word is quickly. The status report (choice A) is too detailed for a quick
look. The forecast report (choice C) only looks into the future. The progress report (choice B) will summarize project status.
A team member is visiting the manufacturing plant of one of the suppliers. Which of the following is the MOST important thing to be done in any telephone calls the project manager might make to the team member?
A. Ask the team member to repeat back what the project manager says.
B. Review the list of contact information for all stakeholders.
C. Ask the team member to look for change requests.
D. Review the upcoming meeting schedule.
Explanation Questions like this can drive one crazy. Although it asks for the most important thing, there are many choices that are reasonably correct. In questions like this, look for the most immediate need. In this case, the team member is in a manufacturing environment. That means that communications will most likely be blocked by noise. In order to have the issue at hand taken care of, the communication, it is BEST for the project manager to use choice A.
A project manager overhears a conversation between two stakeholders who are talking about how unhappy they are with the impacts of the project on their own departments. Stakeholder A asks if the project is on time, and stakeholder B replies that the SPI is 1.05. Stakeholder A asks if the project manager for the project knows of stakeholder B's concern. Stakeholder B responds that he is not sure. What is the BEST thing for the project manager to do?
A. Make sure the stakeholders see that the project manager overheard and then ask them to direct any questions to the project manager in writing.
B. Make a presentation to all the stakeholders regarding the status of the project.
C. Send both stakeholders a copy of the issue log and ask for additional comments.
D. Arrange a meeting with both stakeholders to allow them to voice any concerns they may have.
Explanation Here again is a question with more than one right answer. Would asking for something in writing be the best way to communicate? In this particular situation, asking for the concern to be in writing might alienate the stakeholders. Therefore, choice A cannot be best. The issue log (choice C) is where the issue should be listed, but the situation does not say if the project manager knows what the stakeholder's concern is. Therefore, C cannot be the best choice. Why not choice B? Notice the use of the words all stakeholders:' Why bother other stakeholders with this problem when the project manager already knows there may be some concern of stakeholders A and B to address, not all stakeholders. Choice B refers to making a presentation. Presentations are formal verbal. This problem would likely require informal verbal communication in order to discover the real problem. Choice D is therefore the best choice.
Who of the following are ALWAYS stakeholders?
A. A person who does not want the project to be completed
B. An assembly line worker that will use the product of the project
C. A functional manager from the engineering department
D. A person who might lose his or her position in the company because of the project
Explanation A user of the project's product is always a stakeholder, while the others mayor may not be.
During the middle of the project, things have been going well. The work authorization system has allowed people to know when to start work, and the issue log has helped keep track of stakeholders' needs. The benefit cost ratio has been improving, and the sponsor has expressed his appreciation for the team members' efforts by hosting a milestone party for the team. The project manager gets a call from a team member saying that the results from the completion of their activity's predecessor is two days late. Which of the following reasons would BEST describe why this occurred?
A. The project manager was focusing on the sponsor's needs.
B. Functional management was not included in the communications management plan.
C. The successor activities should have been watched, not the predecessors.
D. The right people were not invited to the milestone party.
Explanation Since there is no information about the sponsor or his needs in this situation and nothing presented here relates to sponsors, choice A cannot be best. Choice C cannot be best, as it is not a correct statement. One watches both predecessor and successor activities. Choice D cannot be best, as the attendance at the party and the issue at hand are not related. Often forgotten in communications management plans are the bosses of team members (functional management, since of course you remember that we are assuming a matrix organization). Including the bosses of team members in communications planning, requirements gathering, risk management, and other areas of project management helps make the project better. In addition, it helps the boss manage his own resources effectively. If the functional manager of the team member assigned to the predecessor activity had been included, he would have known when the team member was needed to do work for the project and the impact, if any, of delay. The communications management plan might also have included a method to communicate potential delays. For these reasons, choice B is best.
A project manager has just been assigned a team that comes from many countries, including Brazil, Japan, the US, and Britain. What is her BEST tool for success?
A. The responsibility assignment matrix (RAM)
B. The teleconference
C. Team communication with the WBS
D. Communication and well-developed people skills
Explanation Working with people from different cultures, with different cultural values and beliefs, necessitates an understanding of both basic definitions and the areas of cultural impact. As project managers, we need to have good communication skills and a willingness to adapt to other cultures.
The project has 13 team members and affects over 15 departments in the organization. Because the project is 20 percent complete to date and the team has had successful performance reports from five of the affected departments, the project manager holds a party to celebrate. The project manager invites key stakeholders from all of the departments to the party, in order to give those providing good reviews an informal opportunity to communicate good things to those departments that have not yet been affected by the project.
At the party, the project manager walks around to try to discover any relevant information that would help the project be more successful. He happens to hear a manager of one of the departments talking about setting up more regular meetings on the project.
The BEST thing for the project manager to do would be to FIRST:
A. Record the effectiveness of the party in the project lessons learned.
B. Review the information distribution methods on the project.
C. Hold a meeting of all the stakeholders to discuss their concerns.
D. Make sure the manager has a copy of the communications management plan so he is reminded that such concerns should be sent to the project manager.
Explanation Many of these choices could be done, but ask yourself, What is the most effective thing to do? The party may well generate lessons learned, and recording them (choice A) would certainly be a good idea, but the question asked what to do first. There is a more immediate issue- the manager. Choice C could also be useful, but it would require taking time of all the stakeholders when there is only one stakeholder, the manager, who definitely has an issue. Besides, a good project manager would be holding regular meetings with the stakeholders already. Choice D might be a
good idea, as the manager apparently is not communicating with the project manager. However, this would not absolutely make sure the manager does communicate.
The manager is, in effect, saying that he is not getting the information he needs. His lack of needed information is causing him to suggest more meetings. Too many meetings are a problem on projects. The concept of information distribution (choice B) is to determine who needs what
information and plan how to get it to them. A great project manager does not just add meetings, but solves the real problem in the best way. That might take the form of changing a report or sending existing reports to different people rather than adding meetings. For these reasons, choice B is best.
The purpose of status meetings is to:
A. Exchange information about the project.
B. Have team members report on what they are doing
C. Issue work authorizations
D. Confirm the accuracy of the costs submitted by the team.
Explanation Many people select choice B, but the question asks for the purpose of such meetings. Team members' reporting on what they are doing may best be done outside of meetings. The main purpose is choice A.
The requirements of many stakeholders were not approved for inclusion in your project. Therefore, you had a difficult time receiving formal approval of the project management plan for this project. The stakeholders argued and held up the project while they held meeting after meeting about their requirements. The project was finally approved and work began six months ago. All of the following would be good preventive actions to implement EXCEPT:
A. Keep a file of what requirements were not included in the project.
B. Make sure the change control process is not used as a vehicle to add back the requirements into the project.
C. Maintain an issue log.
D. Hold meetings with the stakeholders to go over the work that will not be added to the project.
Explanation Why would choice D be the action not to take? Isn't it similar to choice A? Yes and no. This issue should be over, but since there were so many meetings and arguments about the requirements being removed, it is unlikely that the issue will be dropped by the stakeholders. However, since it has not come up again, and the project was started six months ago, spending time in a meeting is excessive. The other choices are easier and have less impact on the project and are therefore things that could be done.
The project manager is expecting a deliverable to be submitted by e-mail from a team member today. At the end of the day, the project manager contacts the team member to notify him that it has not been received. The team member apologizes and says that he was not able to e-mail the deliverable, and it was sent through the mail instead. The team member goes on to explain that he notified the project manager that this would occur during a phone conversation they had while the project manager was traveling. Wasn't that the conversation we had when I told you I could not hear you well due to poor cell phone coverage? asks the project manager. Yes, replies the team member. What could have avoided this problem?
A. Paralingual communication
B. Adding to the issue log after the phone call
C. Better attention to determining communications requirements
D. Feedback during the communication
Explanation The pitch and tone of voice (choice A) is not relevant here, as the project manager could not even hear what was being said. There were no issues recognized after the conversation, so none could be added to the issue log (choice B). This issue is not related to communications requirements, so choice C cannot be best. Saying, I am not sure I properly heard what you said during the conversation or asking for the message to be repeated back to the sender would have prevented this problem. This makes choice D the best option.
When do stakeholders have the MOST influence on a project?
A. At the beginning of the project
B. In the middle of the project
C. At the end of the project
D. Throughout the project
Explanation Stakeholders must be identified and involved at the beginning of the project, in order to determine their requirements and expectations. Remember that if this is not done early, the results may be expensive changes and/or dissatisfaction later in the project.
The project has been going well, except for the number of changes being made. The project is being installed into seven different departments within the company and will greatly improve departmental performance when operational. There are 14 project management processes selected for use on this project. The project manager is a technical expert as well as having been trained in communications and managing people. Which of the following is the MOST likely cause of the project problems?
A. The project manager was not trained in understanding the company environment.
B. The project should have more management oversight since it will result in such great benefits to the company.
C. The project should have used more of the project management processes.
D. Some stakeholders were not identified.
Explanation It is important here to look for the choice that would solve the real problem. There is no reason to think that training (choice A), management oversight (choice B), or a need for more processes (choice C) are factors contributing to the number of changes. The root cause would be that stakeholders were missed and therefore their requirements were not found. Those stakeholders are now causing changes to accommodate their needs. The best choice is D.
Stakeholders can be identified in which project management process groups?
A. Initiating, planning, executing, monitoring and controlling, and closing
B. Initiating and planning
C. Planning and monitoring and controlling
D. Monitoring and controlling and closing
Explanation Stakeholders can be identified throughout the project management process groups. However, the earlier stakeholders are identified, the better for the project. If all of the stakeholders' needs and requirements are taken into account before plans are finalized and project work is begun, fewer changes will be needed later in the project, when they will be more costly.
If a project manager wants to report on the actual project results vs. planned results, she should use a:
A. Trend report.
B. Forecasting report.
C. Status report.
D. Variance report.
Explanation This situation describes the need to "compare." A trend report (choice A) shows performance over time. A forecasting report (choice B) looks only to the future. A status report (choice C) is generally static (relating to a moment in time). The only choice that compares project results is a variance analysis (choice D).
A particular stakeholder has a reputation for making many changes on projects. What is the BEST approach a project manager can take at the beginning of the project to manage this situation?
A. Say No to the stakeholder a few times to dissuade him from submitting more changes.
B. Get the stakeholder involved in the project as early as possible.
C. Talk to the stakeholder's boss to find ways to direct the stakeholder's activities to another project.
D. Ask that the stakeholder not be included in the stakeholder listing.
Explanation We cannot avoid the stakeholder (choices C and D), because he has a stake in the project. A project manager can say "No" (choice A), but this does not solve the root cause. There may be some good ideas within those changes. The only choice that deals with the problem is choice B.
Changes are not bad! Changes normally come from lack of input at the beginning of the project.
If we begin effective communication with this stakeholder early (choice B), we stand a much better chance of discovering his changes during the planning process, when they will have less of an impact on the project.
Risk Management CHAPTER ELEVEN
All of the following are factors in the assessment of project risk EXCEPT:
A. Risk event.
B. Risk probability.
C. Amount at stake.
D. Insurance premiums.
Explanation Insurance premiums come into play when you determine which risk response strategy you will use.
If a project has a 60 percent chance of a US $100,000 profit and a 40 percent chance of a US$100,000 loss, the expected monetary value for the project is:
A. $100,000 profit.
B. $60,000 loss.
C. $20,000 profit.
D. $40,000 loss.
Explanation Expected monetary value (EMV) is computed by EMV = Probability x Impact. We need to compute both positive and negative values and then add them.
0.6 x $100,000 = $60,000. 0.4 x ($100,000) = ($40,000)
Expected Monetary Value = $60,000 - $40,000 = $20,000 profit
Assuming that the ends of a range of estimates are +/- 3 sigma from the mean, which of the following range estimates involves the LEAST risk?
A. 30 days, plus or minus 5 days
B. 22 - 30 days
C. Optimistic = 26 days, most likely = 30 days, pessimistic = 33 days
D. Mean of 28 days
Explanation This one drove you crazy didn't it? Reread the question! When you look at the ranges of each choice, you will see that choice A is ten days, choice B is eight days, and choice C is seven days. The range of estimates with the smallest range is the least risky. Therefore, the answer is C. The words +/- 3 sigma are extraneous. Practice reading questions that are wordy and have extraneous data.
Which of the following risk events is MOST likely to interfere with attaining a project's schedule objective?
A. Delays in obtaining required approvals
B. Substantial increases in the cost of purchased materials
C. Contract disputes that generate claims for increased payments
D. Slippage of the planned post-implementation review meeting
Explanation Cost increases (choice B) and contract disputes (choice C) will not necessarily interfere with schedule. Notice the words post-implementation in choice D. It will not definitely interfere with the project schedule. Choice A is the only one that deals with a time delay.
If a risk has a 20 percent chance of happening in a given month, and the project is expected to last five months, what is the probability that this risk event will occur during the fourth month of the project?
A. Less than 1 percent
B. 20 percent
C. 60 percent
D. 80 percent
Explanation Don't feel too silly if you got this wrong. Many people miss this one. No calculation is needed. If there is a 20 percent chance in anyone month, the chance in the fourth month must therefore be 20 percent.
If a risk event has a 90 percent chance of occurring, and the consequences will be US $10,000, what does US $9,000 represent?
A. Risk value
B. Present value
C. Expected monetary value
D. Contingency budget
Explanation Expected monetary value is computed by multiplying the probability times the impact. In this case, EMV = 0.9 x $10,000 = $9,000.
Risks will be identified during which risk management process(es)?
A. Perform Quantitative Risk Analysis and Identify Risks
B. Identify Risks and Monitor and Control Risks
C. Perform Qualitative Risk Analysis and Monitor and Control Risks
D. Identify Risks
Explanation This is a tricky question. Risks are identified during the Identify Risk process, naturally, but newly emerging risks are identified in the Monitor and Control Risks process.
What should be done with risks on the watchlist?
A. Document them for historical use on other projects.
B. Document them and revisit during project monitoring and controlling.
C. Document them and set them aside because they are already covered in your contingency plans.
D. Document them and give them to the customer.
Explanation Risks change throughout the project. You need to review risks at intervals during the project to ensure that non-critical risks have not become critical.
All of the following are ALWAYS inputs to the risk management process EXCEPT:
A. Historical information.
B. Lessons learned.
C. Work breakdown structure.
D. Project status reports.
Explanation Project status reports (choice D) can be an input to risk management. However, when completing risk management for the first time, you would not have project status reports. Therefore, project status reports are not always an input to risk management.
Risk tolerances are determined in order to help:
A. The team rank the project risks.
B. The project manager estimate the project.
C. The team schedule the project.
D. Management know how other managers will act on the project.
Explanation If you know the tolerances of the stakeholders, you can determine how they might react to different situations and risk events. You use this information to help assign levels of risk on each work package or activity.
All of the following are common results of risk management EXCEPT:
A. Contract terms and conditions are created.
B. The project management plan is changed.
C. The communications management plan is changed.
D. The project charter is changed.
Explanation A change to the project charter is not always necessary. In fact, a change to the charter is a fundamental change to the project and may require a major adjustment to all aspects of the project management plan. There are many reasons the other choices could happen as a result of
risk. Since a contract can only be created after risks are known (a contract is a tool to transfer risks), it is common sense that choice A cannot be the exception. The project management plan (choice
B) could change to include a modified WBS and new work packages related to mitigating risk. The
communications management plan (choice C) could change as a way to address a risk. Choice D is the best answer.
Purchasing insurance is BEST considered an example of risk:
Explanation To mitigate risk (choice A), we either reduce the probability of the event happening
or reduce its impact. Many people think of using insurance as a way of decreasing impact. However, mitigating risk is taking action before a risk event occurs. Buying insurance is not such an action. Acceptance of risk (choice C) does not involve such action as purchasing insurance. Avoidance of risk (choice D) means we change the way we will execute the project so the risk is no longer a factor. Transference is passing the risk off to another party.
You are finding it difficult to evaluate the exact cost impact of risks. You should evaluate on a(n):
A. Quantitative basis.
B. Numerical basis.
C. Qualitative basis.
D. Econometric basis.
Explanation If you cannot determine an exact cost impact to the event, use qualitative estimates such as Low, Medium, High, etc.
Outputs of the Plan Risk Responses process include:
A. Residual risks, fallback plans, and contingency reserves.
B. Risk triggers, contracts, and a risk list.
C. Secondary risks, process updates, and risk owners.
D. Contingency plans, project management plan updates, and change requests.
Explanation A risk list (choice B), process updates (choice C), and change requests (choice D)
are not outputs of the Plan Risk Responses process. The items in choice A are all outputs of the Plan
Risk Responses process, making choice A the correct answer.
Workarounds are determined during which risk management process?
A. Identify Risks
B. Perform Quantitative Risk Analysis
C. Plan Risk Responses
D. Monitor and Control Risks
Explanation A workaround refers to determining how to handle a risk that occurs but is not included in the risk register. The project must be in the Monitor and Control Risks process if risks have occurred.
During which risk management process is a determination to transfer a risk made?
A. Identify Risks
B. Perform Quantitative Risk Analysis
C. Plan Risk Responses
D. Monitor and Control Risks
Explanation Transference is a risk response strategy.
A project manager has just finished the risk response plan for a us $387,000 engineering project.
Which of the following should he probably do NEXT?
A. Determine the overall risk rating of the project.
B. Begin to analyze the risks that show up in the project drawings.
C. Add work packages to the project work breakdown structure.
D. Hold a project risk reassessment.
Explanation This situation is occurring during project planning. Planning must be completed before moving on. Determining the risk rating of the project (choice A) is done during the Perform Qualitative Risk Analysis process, and should have already been done. Choice B is work that is done during project executing. Project risk reassessment (choice D) occurs during Monitor and Control Risks, the next step in the risk process after Plan Risk Responses. But the question does not ask what is next in the risk management process, just what is next. Only choice C, as part of iterations, comes after risk in project planning. Do you know the order of planning yet?
A project manager asked various stakeholders to determine the probability and impact of a number of risks. He then analyzed assumptions. He is about to move to the next step of risk management. Based on this information, what has the project manager forgotten to do?
A. Evaluate trends in risk analysis.
B. Identify triggers.
C. Provide a standardized risk rating matrix.
D. Create a fallback plan.
Explanation The activities of the Perform Qualitative Risk Analysis process are probability and impact definition, assumptions testing (data quality assessment), and probability and impact matrix development.
A project manager has assembled the project team, identified 56 risks on the project, determined what would trigger the risks, rated them on a risk rating matrix, tested their assumptions, and assessed the quality of the data used. The team is continuing to move through the risk management process. What has the project manager forgotten to do?
B. Risk mitigation
C. Overall risk ranking for the project
D. Involvement of other stakeholders
Explanation The process they have used so far is fine, except the input of other stakeholders is needed in order to identify more risks.
You are a project manager for the construction of a major new manufacturing plant that has never been done before. The project cost is estimated at US $30,000,000 and will make use of three sellers. Once begun, the project cannot be cancelled, as there will be a large expenditure on plant and equipment. As the project manager, it would be MOST important to carefully:
A. Review all cost proposals from the sellers.
B. Examine the budget reserves.
C. Complete the project charter.
D. Perform an identification of risks.
Explanation Choice A could be done, but it is not a pressing issue based on the situation provided. Choice B could also be done, but not until risk planning is completed. It is always important to carefully complete a project charter, choice C, but there are other issues needing detailed attention
in this situation, so choice C cannot be best. Since this project has never been done before, and
there will be a large cost outlay, it would be best for the project manager to spend more time on risk management. Risk identification is the most proactive response and would have the greatest positive impact on the project.
During the Plan Risk Management process, your team has come up with 434 risks and 16 major causes of those risks. The project is the last of a series of projects that the team has worked on together. The sponsor is very supportive, and a lot of time was invested in making sure the project work was complete and signed off by all key stakeholders.
During project planning, the team cannot come up with an effective way to mitigate or insure against a risk. It is not work that can be outsourced, nor can it be deleted. What would be the BEST solution?
A. Accept the risk.
B. Continue to investigate ways to mitigate the risk.
C. Look for ways to avoid the risk.
D. Look for ways to transfer the risk.
Explanation This question relates real-world situations to risk types. Did you realize that the entire first paragraph is extraneous? Based on the question, you cannot delete the work to avoid it, nor can you insure or outsource to transfer the risk. This leaves acceptance as the only correct choice.
A project manager is quantifying risk for her project. Several of her experts are offsite, but wish to be included. How can this be done?
A. Use Monte Carlo analysis using the Internet as a tool.
B. Apply the critical path method.
C. Determine options for recommended corrective action.
D. Apply the Delphi technique.
Explanation The Delphi technique is most commonly used to obtain expert opinions on technical issues, the necessary project or product scope, or the risks.
An experienced project manager has just begun working for a large information technology integrator. Her manager provides her with a draft project charter and immediately asks her to provide an analysis of the risks on the project. Which of the following would BEST help in this effort?
A. An article from PM Network Magazine
B. Her project scope statement from the project planning process
C. Her resource plan from the project planning process
D. A conversation with a team member from a similar project that failed in the past
Explanation Did you realize that this situation is taking place during the initiating process group? Choices Band C are created in the project planning process and so are not yet available. Therefore, we are left with deciding if choice A or choice D provides the greater value. Since the information gained in choice D is more specific to your company, it is the best choice.
You have been appointed as the manager of a new, large, and complex project. Because this project is business-critical and very visible, senior management has told you to analyze the project's risks and prepare response strategies for them as soon as possible. The organization has risk management procedures that are seldom used or followed, and has had a history of handling risks badly. The project's first milestone is in two weeks. In preparing the risk response plan, input from which of the
following is generally LEAST important?
A. Project team members
B. Project sponsor
C. Individuals responsible for risk management policies and templates
D. Key stakeholders
Explanation Team members (choice A) will have knowledge of the project and the product of the project and will thus have a lot to contribute to risk responses. Those responsible for risk templates (choice C) will be able to provide the templates from past projects (historical records) and therefore will be very important. Key stakeholders (choice D) will know more about the technical working of the project to help plan What are we going to do about it? so choice D is not likely to be the least important. The sponsor (choice B) may have the least knowledge of what will work to solve the problems. Sponsors need to be involved in the project and help identify risks. They may even approve the response plans created by others, but they would not generally be major contributors to response plans. This makes B the best choice.
You were in the middle of a two-year project to deploy new technology to field offices across the country. A hurricane caused power outages just when the upgrade was near completion. When the power was restored, all of the project reports and historical data were lost with no way of retrieving them. What should have been done to prevent this problem?
A. Purchase insurance.
B. Plan for a reserve fund.
C. Monitor the weather and have a contingency plan.
D. Schedule the installation outside of the hurricane season.
Explanation The risk is the loss of data due to a power outage. Choice A is not related to mitigating the problem. It transfers the risk. A reserve fund (choice B) is acceptance and would help address the cost factors after the power failure, but would not reduce the probability or impact of it. Avoiding the hurricane by scheduling the installation at a different time (choice D) mitigates the power outage risk but could have a large negative impact on the project schedule and so is not the best choice. The better choice of the mitigation options (choices C and D) is to monitor the weather and know when to implement the contingency plan.
A system development project is nearing project closing when a previously unidentified risk is discovered. This could potentially affect the project's overall ability to deliver. What should be done NEXT?
A. Alert the project sponsor of potential impacts to cost, scope, or schedule.
B. Qualify the risk.
C. Mitigate this risk by developing a risk response plan.
D. Develop a workaround.
Explanation You would need to analyze the problem before you would talk to the sponsor (choice A). You could not mitigate the risk (choice C) until you qualified the risk. A workaround (choice D) is an unplanned response to a risk that is occurring. This risk is identified, not occurring, so there is no need to take action by creating a workaround. Qualifying the risk (choice B) will give you an indication of how great the risk is. That information will help you determine how to proceed.
The cost performance index (CPI) of a project is 0.6 and the schedule performance index (SPI) is 0.71. The project has 625 work packages and is being completed over a four-year period. The team members are very inexperienced, and the project received little support for proper planning. Which of the following is the BEST thing to do?
A. Update risk identification and analysis.
B. Spend more time improving the cost estimates.
C. Remove as many work packages as possible.
D. Reorganize the responsibility assignment matrix.
Explanation This project has deviated so far from the baseline that updated risk identification and risk analysis should be performed.
While preparing your risk responses, you identify additional risks. What should you do?
A. Add reserves to the project to accommodate the new risks and notify management.
B. Document the risk items, and calculate the expected monetary value based on probability and impact that result from the occurrences.
C. Determine the risk events and the associated cost, then add the cost to the project budget as a reserve.
D. Add a 10 percent contingency to the project budget and notify the customer.
Explanation When a new risk is identified, it should go through the risk management process. Choice A cannot be the best choice, as you first need to determine the probability and impact of the risk and then try to diminish impact through the Plan Risk Responses process. Only after these efforts should you add reserves. Choice C addresses only costs, when there could also be a time impact. This choice also ignores the work of Plan Risk Responses. Choice D cannot be the best choice because it is better to determine reserves based on a detailed analysis of risk. Therefore, the best choice is B.
You have just been assigned as the project manager for a new telecommunications project that is entering the second phase of the project. There appear to be many risks on this project, but no one has evaluated them to assess the range of possible project outcomes. What needs to be done?
A. Plan Risk Management
B. Perform Quantitative Risk Analysis
C. Plan Risk Responses
D. Monitor and Control Risks
Explanation Did you notice that this project has already begun? Risk management is a required element of project management. You must complete the risk management process, starting with the Plan Risk Management process, making choice A the correct choice.
During project executing, a team member identifies a risk that is not in the risk register. What should you do?
A. Get further information on how the team member identified the risk, because you already performed a detailed analysis and did not identify this risk.
B. Disregard the risk, because risks were identified during project planning.
C. Inform the customer about the risk.
D. Analyze the risk.
Explanation First, you want to determine what the risk entails and the impact to the project, then determine what actions you will take regarding the risk.
During project executing, a major problem occurs that was not included in the risk register. What should you do FIRST?
A. Create a workaround.
B. Reevaluate the Identify Risks process.
C. Look for any unexpected effects of the problem.
D. Tell management.
Explanation Notice that this is a problem that has occurred, rather than a problem that has just been identified. Following the right process is part of professional and social responsibility. Because an unidentified problem or risk occurred, it is important to perform choices Band C. However, they are not your first choices. You might need to inform management (choice D) but this is reactive, not proactive, and not the first thing you should do.
The customer requests a change to the project that would increase the project risk. Which of the following should you do before all the others?
A. Include the expected monetary value of the risk in the new cost estimate.
B. Talk to the customer about the impact of the change.
C. Analyze the impacts of the change with the team.
D. Change the risk management plan.
Explanation This is a recurring theme. First, you should evaluate the impact of the change. Next, determine options. Then go to management and the customer.
Which of the following is a chief characteristic of the Delphi technique?
A. Extrapolation from historical records from previous projects
B. Expert opinion
C. Analytical hierarchy process
D. Bottom-up approach
Explanation The Delphi technique uses experts and builds to consensus; therefore, expert opinion is the chief characteristic.
A project has had some problems, but now seems under control. In the last few months, almost all the reserve has been used up and most of the negative impacts of events that had been predicted have occurred. There are only four activities left, and two of them are on the critical path. Management now informs the project manager that it would be in the performing organization's best interest to finish the project two weeks earlier than scheduled in order to receive an additional profit. In response, the project manager sends out a request for proposal for some work that the team was going to do, in the hopes that another company might be able to do the work faster. The project manager can BEST be said to be attempting to work with:
C. Scope verification.
Explanation The wording of this question can be confusing. Reserve (choice A) is mentioned
in the situation, but the project manager is not dealing with reserves in the actions he is taking. Choice C involves meeting with the customer to gain formal acceptance, so it cannot be the best choice. Choice D cannot be the best choice since the project manager is trying to make something good happen, not dealing with a negative impact, or threat, that mayor may not occur. The project manager is working to make a positive impact on the project more likely to occur. Therefore, choice B is best.
Monte Carlo analysis is used to:
A. Get an indication of the risk involved in the project.
B. Estimate an activity's length.
C. Simulate the order in which activities occur.
D. Prove to management that extra staff is needed.
Explanation Notice how many choices are half right? Monte Carlo could help you know that an estimate for an activity needs to change, but not what the activity estimate should be (choice B). Monte Carlo is a simulation (choice C), but it simulates time, not order of activities. Monte Carlo can be used to prove things to management (choice D), but its main focus deals with time, not staff. Risk can be assessed using Monte Carlo analysis (choice A). By considering the inputs to the PERT estimates and the network diagram, you can obtain a better overview of the overall project risk.
A project team is creating a project management plan when management asks them to identify project risks and provide some form of qualitative output as soon as possible. What should the project team provide?
A. Prioritized list of project risks
B. Risk triggers
C. Contingency reserves
D. Probability of achieving the time and cost objectives
Explanation This question essentially asks, What is an output of the Perform Qualitative Risk Analysis process? Only Choice A meets that criteria. Choices Band C are parts of the Plan Risk Responses process. Choice D occurs during the Perform Quantitative Risk Analysis process.
A project manager is creating a risk response plan. However, every time a risk response is suggested, another risk is identified that is caused by the response. Which of the following is the BEST thing for the project manager to do?
A. Document the new risks and continue the Plan Risk Responses process.
B. Make sure the project work is better understood.
C. Spend more time making sure the risk responses are clearly defined.
D. Get more people involved in the Identify Risks process, since risks have been missed.
Explanation Did you realize this question describes secondary risks? Identifying secondary risks is good and expected while completing the Plan Risk Responses process. With that in mind, the best thing to do is choice A.
A watchlist is an output of which risk management process?
A. Plan Risk Responses
B. Perform Quantitative Risk Analysis
C. Perform Qualitative Risk Analysis
D. Plan Risk Management
Explanation A watch list is made up of low priority risks that, in the Perform Qualitative Risk Analysis process, were determined to be of too low priority or low impact to move further in the risk process.
During the Identify Risks process, a project manager made a long list of risks identified by all the stakeholders using various methods. He then made sure that all the risks were understood and that triggers had been identified. Later, in the Plan Risk Responses process, he took all the risks identified by the stakeholders and determined ways to mitigate them. What has he done wrong?
A. The project manager should have waited until the Perform Qualitative Risk Analysis process to get the stakeholders involved.
B. More people should be involved in the Plan Risk Responses process.
C. The project manager should have created workarounds.
D. Triggers are not identified until the Identify Risks process.
Explanation Stakeholders (choice A) are involved in the Identify Risks process. Workarounds (choice C) are created later in the risk process. Plan Risk Responses must include the involvement of all risk response owners and possibly others. This makes choice B the correct answer.
Which of the following MUST be an agenda item at all team meetings?
A. Discussion of project risks
B. Status of current activities
C. Identification of new activities
D. Review of project problems
Explanation Risk is so important that it must be discussed at all team meetings.
Procurement Management CHAPTER TWELVE
Once signed, a contract is legally binding unless:
A. One party is unable to perform.
B. One party is unable to finance its part of the work.
C. It is in violation of applicable law.
D. It is declared null and void by either party's legal counsel.
Explanation Once signed, a contract is binding. Generally, the inability to perform, get financing, or one party's belief that the contract is null and void does not change the fact that the contract is binding. If, however, both sides agree to terminate the contract, the contract can move into closure. Once closure is completed, the project is considered completed.
With a clear contract statement of work, a seller completes work as specified, but the buyer is not pleased with the results. The contract is considered to be:
A. Null and void.
Explanation If the seller completes the work specified in the procurement statement of work, the contract is considered complete. That does not mean the same thing as contract closed. The Close Procurements process must still occur. However, in this situation, the contract work is completed. Tricky!
All of the following statements concerning procurement documents are incorrect EXCEPT:
A. Well-designed procurement documents can simplify comparison of responses.
B. Procurement documents must be rigorous with no flexibility to allow consideration of seller suggestions.
C. In general, bid documents should not include evaluation criteria.
D. Well-designed procurement documents do not include a procurement statement of work.
Explanation Often the seller is required to inform the buyer of anything that is missing or unclear in the procurement documents (choice B). It is in the buyer's best interest to discover missing items, since it will save the buyer money and trouble to correct the problem early. Procurement documents must contain terms and conditions and evaluation criteria (choice C) as well as all the work that is to be done, including the procurement statement of work (choice D). This is so the seller can price the project and know what is most important to the buyer. Choice A is an important point for the real world and is the best answer.
A project manager for the seller is told by her management that the project should do whatever possible to be awarded incentive money. The primary objective of incentive clauses in a contract is to:
A. Reduce costs for the buyer.
B. Help the seller control costs.
C. Synchronize objectives.
D. Reduce risk for the seller by shifting risk to the buyer.
Explanation Incentives are meant to bring the objectives of the seller in line with those of the buyer. That way both are progressing toward the same objective.
All the following statements about change control are incorrect EXCEPT:
A. A fixed price contract will minimize the need for change control.
B. Changes seldom provide real benefits to the project.
C. Contracts should include procedures to accommodate changes.
D. More detailed specifications eliminate the causes of changes.
Explanation Since there can be changes in any form of contract, choice A is not the best answer. There are always good ideas (changes) that can add benefit to the project, so choice B cannot be the best answer. In choice D, the word eliminate implies that changes will not occur. As that is not
true, this cannot be the best answer.
A routine audit of a cost reimbursable (CR) contract determines that overcharges are being made. If the contract does not specify corrective action, the buyer should:
A. Continue to make project payments.
B. Halt payments until the problem is corrected.
C. Void the contract and start legal action to recover overpayments.
D. Change the contract to require more frequent audits.
Explanation Notice that choice B is really saying halt ALL payments. Halting all payments would be a breach of contract on the buyer's part. Choice C is too severe and cannot be done unilaterally. Choice D does not solve the problem presented. A choice that said, Halt payments on the disputed amount would probably be the best answer, but it is not offered. The best answer is A.
The primary objective of contract negotiations is to:
A. Get the most from the other side.
B. Protect the relationship.
C. Get the highest monetary return.
D. Define objectives and stick to them.
Explanation As a project manager, you want to develop a relationship during negotiations that will last throughout the project.
A seller is working on a cost reimbursable (CR) contract when the buyer decides he would like to expand the scope of services and change to a fixed price (FP) contract. All of the following are the seller's options EXCEPT:
A. Completing the original work on a cost reimbursable basis and then negotiating a fixed price for the additional work.
B. Completing the original work and rejecting the additional work.
C. Negotiating a fixed price contract that includes all the work.
D. Starting over with a new contract.
Explanation The seller does not have the choice to start over. The contract that exists is binding. Both parties could agree to start over, but this is a drastic step.
Bidder conferences are part of:
A. Plan Procurements.
B. Administer Procurements.
C. Conduct Procurements.
D. Communications Management.
Explanation Expect many questions on the exam that require you to know in what part of the procurement process activities are done.
All of the following MUST be present to have a contract EXCEPT:
A. Procurement statement of work
C. Address of the seller
D. Buyers' signatures
Explanation Many people miss the fact that a contract includes a procurement statement of work (choice A). To have a contract, you must also have acceptance (choice B). One set of signatures is not enough; you must have sign-off (i.e., acceptance) from both parties, so choice D is only partially correct. The address of the seller (choice C) is not required, and therefore is the exception.
Which of the following BEST describes the project manager's role during the procurement process?
A. The project manager has only minor involvement.
B. The project manager should be the negotiator.
C. The project manager should supply an understanding of the risks of the project.
D. The project manager should tell the contract manager how the contracting process should be handled.
Explanation As the project manager, you know what the project risks are. You need to make sure that provisions are included in the contract to address these risks.
What is one of the KEY objectives during contract negotiations?
A. Obtain a fair and reasonable price.
B. Negotiate a price under the seller's estimate.
C. Ensure that all project risks are thoroughly delineated.
D. Ensure that an effective communications management plan is established.
Explanation Choices C and D are good ideas, but not the key objective. Negotiations should be win/win, so choice B is not the best choice. A fair and equitable price (choice A) will create a good working atmosphere. Otherwise, you will pay later, on change orders.
Which of the following activities occurs during the Plan Procurements process?
A. Make-or-buy decisions
B. Answering sellers' questions about the bid documents
D. Proposal evaluation
Explanation Answering sellers' questions (choice B), advertising (choice C), and proposal evaluation (choice D) occur during the Conduct Procurements process.
Which of the following is the BEST thing for a project manager to do in the Conduct Procurements process of procurement management?
A. Evaluate risks
B. Select a contract type
C. Update the project schedule
D. Answer sellers' questions about bid documents
Explanation During the Conduct Procurements process, you normally answer questions submitted by the sellers. The risk analysis processes (choice A) are done before the procurement process
begins, as procurement is a risk mitigation and transference tool. Selecting a contract type (choice
B) is part of Plan Procurements. Changes to the project schedule (choice C) may be an output of the
Administer Procurements process.
The sponsor is worried about the seller deriving extra profit on the cost plus fixed fee (CPFF) contract. Each month he requires the project manager to submit CPI calculations and an analysis of the cost to complete. The project manager explains to the sponsor that extra profits should NOT be a worry on this project because:
A. The team is making sure the seller does not cut scope.
B. All costs invoiced are being audited.
C. There can only be a maximum 10 percent increase if there is an unexpected cost overrun.
D. The fee is only received by the seller when the project is completed.
Explanation Choice A cannot be best because cutting scope decreases profits on this type of contract. Choice C cannot be best, as CPFF contracts generally do not limit fee increases. Choice D cannot be best, as the fee in a CPFF contract is usually paid out on a continuous basis during the life of the project. One of the ways to change the profit in a cost plus fixed fee contract is to invoice for items not chargeable to the project (choice B).
In a fixed price (FP) contract, the fee or profit is:
B. Part of the negotiation involved in paying every invoice.
C. Applied as a line item to every invoice.
D. Determined with the other party at the end of the project.
Explanation To the seller, it is known, but this question is from the buyer's perspective. You do not know what profit the seller included in the contract.
A project performed under a cost reimbursable contract has finally entered the Close Procurements process. What MUST the buyer remember to do?
A. Decrease the risk rating of the project.
B. Audit seller's cost submittals.
C. Evaluate the fee he is paying.
D. Make sure that the seller is not adding resources.
Explanation Although a reserve might be decreased for the project overall when one of its contracts enters closure, the risk rating of the project (choice A) may not be affected. Choice C should have been done during the Conduct Procurements process. Although choice D may be a concern during the Administer Procurements process, it is not common during Close Procurements. Choice B, audit seller's cost submittals, is part of the procurement audit and is a required aspect of Close Procurements.
The sponsor and the project manager are discussing what type of contract the project manager plans to use on the project. The buyer points out that the performing organization spent a lot of money hiring a design team to come up with the design. The project manager is concerned that the risk for the buyer be as small as possible. An advantage of a fixed price contract for the buyer is:
A. Cost risk is lower.
B. Cost risk is higher.
C. There is little risk.
D. Risk is shared by all parties.
Explanation If you had trouble with this one, you need to remember that the questions are asked from the buyer's perspective unless otherwise noted. In this case, the seller has the most cost risk, and the buyer's risk is lower.
As part of the records management system, you are trying to make sure that all records from the procurement are documented and indexed. Which of the following do you NOT have to worry about?
B. Procurement statement of work
C. Terms and conditions
D. Negotiation process
Explanation You will see long, wordy questions consisting of many paragraphs on the exam, but do not let them worry you. Sometimes the briefer questions are harder. To answer this question, you need to know what a records management system is and that it would not be used to keep track of negotiations. the negotiation process is not a document.
You are in the middle of a complex negotiation when the other party says, "We need to finish in one hour because I have to catch my plane." That person is using which of the following negotiation strategies?
A. Good guy, bad guy
D. Extreme demands
Explanation Putting a time limit on the negotiation is an example of deadline.
Which of the following is an advantage of centralized contracting?
A. Increased expertise
B. Easier access
C. No home
D. More loyalty to the project
Explanation Centralized contracting usually means harder access and less loyalty. Therefore choices B and D are disadvantages. The fact that procurement managers have no home when they're not working on a project (choice C) is also a disadvantage.
With which type of contract is the seller MOST concerned about project scope?
A. Fixed price
B. Cost plus fixed fee
C. Time and material
D. Purchase order
Explanation In a fixed price contract, the seller has the cost risk and therefore wants to completely understand the procurement statement of work before bidding.
Your company has an emergency and needs contracted work done as soon as possible. Under these circumstances, which of the following would be the MOST helpful to add to the contract?
A. A clear procurement statement of work
B. Requirements as to which subcontractors can be used
D. A force majeure clause
Explanation If you follow the proper project management process, you ALWAYS have good definition of scope (choice A). In this situation, you are in a time crunch. Both good scope definition and incentives are required to make it happen. Which provides the better answer? Along with good scope definition, you need the seller to feel your need for speed. Incentives bring the seller's objectives in line with the buyer's and thus would be the MOST helpful. Good cope definition alone does not ensure speed.
During what part of the procurement process does procurement negotiation occur?
A. Plan Procurements
B. Close Procurements
C. Administer Procurements
D. Conduct Procurements
Explanation Negotiation occurs during the Conduct Procurements process.
The project team is arguing about the prospective sellers who have submitted proposals. One team member argues for a certain seller while another team member wants the project awarded to a different seller. What part of the procurement process is the team in?
A. Plan Procurements
B. Administer Procurements
C. Negotiate Contract
D. Conduct Procurements
Explanation Selected sellers are an output of the Conduct Procurement process.
The project team seems to like to argue; they have argued about everything. Luckily the project manager has set in place a reward system and team-building sessions that will help and encourage the team to cooperate more. The latest thing they are arguing about is whether they should complete a work package themselves or outsource the work to someone else. What part of the procurement process must they be in?
A. Conduct Procurements
B. Plan Procurements
C. Administer Procurements
D. Claims Administration
Explanation Notice that much of this question is irrelevant? Did you also notice that the words make-or-buy decision were not used in the question? Instead, the question used the definition of make-or-buy. Watch out for this on the exam. A make-or-buy decision is needed before the rest of the procurement process can occur. Therefore, the situation must be taking place in one of the early steps of the procurement process.
A project manager is in the middle of creating a request for proposal (RFP). What part of the procurement process is she in?
A. Conduct Procurements
B. Plan Procurements
C. Administer Procurements
D. Make-or- Buy Analysis
Explanation In the Plan Procurements process, we create the procurement documents. The request for proposal is one of those documents.
Your program manager has come to you, the project manager, for help with a bid for her newest project. You want to protect your company from financial risk. You have limited scope definition. What is the BEST type of contract to choose?
A. Fixed price (FP)
B. Cost plus percent of cost (CPPC)
C. Time and material (T&M)
D. Cost plus fixed fee (CPFF)
Explanation Of the options given, the only contract that limits fees for large projects with limited scope definition is cost plus fixed fee.
Negotiations between two parties are becoming complex, so party A makes some notes that both parties sign. However, when the work is being done, party B claims that they are not required to provide an item they both agreed to during negotiations, because it was not included in the subsequent contract. In this case, party B is:
A. Incorrect, because both parties must comply with what they agreed upon.
B. Correct, because there was an offer.
C. Generally correct, because both parties are only required to perform what is in the contract.
D. Generally incorrect, because all agreements must be upheld.
Explanation Party B is only required to deliver what is defined in the contract.
Your project has just been fast tracked and you are looking to quickly bring in a subcontractor to complete networking. There is no time to issue a request for proposal (RFP), so you choose to use a company you have used many times before for software development. A PRIMARY concern in this situation is:
A. Collusion between subcontractors.
B. The subcontractor's qualifications.
C. The subcontractor's evaluation criteria.
D. Holding a bidder conference.
Explanation Although you have used this contractor before, how can you be sure the company is qualified to do the new work, since it is not exactly like the previous work? This is the risk you are taking.
The project manager and project sponsor are discussing the project costs and whether it is better to have their own company do part of the project or hire another company to do the work. If they asked for your opinion, you might say it would be better to do the work yourself if:
A. There is a lot of proprietary data.
B. You have the expertise but you do not have the available manpower.
C. You do not need control over the work.
D. Your company resources are limited.
Explanation It is generally better to do the work yourself if using an outside company means you have to turn over proprietary data to the other company.
After much excitement and hard work, the procurement statement of work for the project is completed. Even after gaining agreement that the procurement statement of work is complete, the project manager is still concerned whether it actually addresses all the buyer's needs. The project manager is about to attend the bidder conference. He asks you for advice on what to do during the session. Which of the following is the BEST advice you can give him?
A. You do not need to attend this session. The contract manager will hold it.
B. Make sure you negotiate project scope.
C. Make sure you give all the sellers enough time to ask questions. They may not want to ask questions while their competitors are in the room.
D. Let the project sponsor handle the meeting so you can be the good guy in the negotiation session.
Explanation The project manager should attend the bidder conference, so choice A is incorrect. Did you select choice B because the question referred to a concern about scope? Then read the choice again. It talks about negotiation, and negotiation occurs after the seller is selected, not during the bidder conference. The procurement manager usually holds the bidder conference, so choice D is incorrect. Choice C describes one of the many challenges of a bidder conference and is therefore the best answer.
A seller is awarded a contract to build a pipeline. The contract terms and conditions require that a work plan be issued for the buyer's approval prior to commencing work, but the seller fails to provide one. Which of the following is the BEST thing for the buyer's project manager to do?
A. File a letter of intent.
B. Develop the work plan and issue it to the seller to move things along.
C. Issue a default letter.
D. Issue a stop work order to the seller until a work plan is prepared.
Explanation Any time that a seller does not perform according to the contract, the project manager must take action. The preferred choice might be to contact the seller and ask what is going on, but that choice is not available here. Therefore, the best choice is to let him know he is in default (choice C).
Close Procurements is different from Close Project or Phase in that Close Procurements:
A. Occurs before Close Project or Phase.
B. Is the only one to involve the customer.
C. Includes the return of property.
D. May be done more than once for each contract.
Explanation Choice B cannot be correct since the customer may be involved in lessons learned and procurement audits and would certainly be involved in formal acceptance. Choice C cannot be correct since both Close Procurements and Close Project or Phase involve the return of property. Close Procurements is done only once for each contract, so choice D cannot be correct. Choice A is correct because contracts are closed out before the project is closed out with the Close Project or Phase process.
You have just started administrating a contract when management decides to terminate the contract.
What should you do FIRST?
A. Go back to the Plan Procurements process.
B. Go back to the Conduct Procurements process.
C. Finish the Administer Procurements process.
D. Go to the Close Procurements process.
Explanation If the contract is terminated, the project needs to enter closure. You need those results for historical purposes.
The project team is arguing about the prospective sellers who have submitted proposals. One team member argues for a certain seller while another team member wants the project to be awarded to a different seller. The BEST thing the project manager should remind the team to focus on in order to make a selection is the:
A. Procurement documents.
B. Procurement audits.
C. Evaluation criteria.
D. Procurement management plan.
Explanation The evaluation criteria are the primary tools for evaluating potential sellers and should be used by the entire team in order to make a selection.
The performing organization is trying to decide whether to split the contracts department and assign procurement responsibilities to departments directly responsible for the projects. A procurement professional might not want this split to occur because they would lose __________ in a decentralized contracting environment.
A. Standardized company project management practices
B. Loyalty to the project
D. Access to others with similar expertise
Explanation Choice A is incorrect, as the change would not impact the entire project management process, only procurement. Loyalty to the project (choice B) would be gained, not lost, in a decentralized environment. In a decentralized procurement situation, there is less focus on maintaining the skill or expertise of the contracting function, making choice D the best answer.
During project executing, your project team member delivers a project deliverable to the buyer.
However, the buyer refuses the deliverable, stating that it does not meet the requirement on page 300 of the technical specifications. You review the document and find that you agree. What is the BEST thing to do?
A. Explain that the contract is wrong and should be changed.
B. Issue a change order.
C. Review the requirements and meet with the responsible team member to review the WBS dictionary.
D. Call a meeting of the team to review the requirement on page 300.
Explanation In choice A, the contract could be wrong, or the customer could be wrong, but this would have/should have been discovered earlier if proper project management was followed. If you picked choice B, you have forgotten that a seller cannot issue a change order (although he could request one). Did you select choice D? If so, remember that project management is not about making every decision with ALL the team members. Choice C involves meeting with the appropriate team member. If such a problem has arisen, it could mean something was wrong in the WBS dictionary or in how the team member completed the work.
What type of contract do you NOT want to use if you do not have enough labor to audit invoices?
A. Cost plus fixed fee (CPFF)
B. Time & material (T&M)
C. Fixed price (FP)
D. Fixed price incentive fee (FPIF)
Explanation If you got this question wrong, reread it. You need to audit invoices in all contract types, so how do you choose? Look for the answer that is BEST. In this case, it would be the choice that requires the greatest effort.
A T&M contract (choice B) should be for small dollars and short duration (remember that a T&M
contract has no incentive to finish), so it does not have a great risk. Choices C and D cannot be best because the risk to the buyer is limited-they are still only going to pay the contract price. In a CPFF contract, the buyer pays all costs. The seller could be charging the buyer for costs that should not be allocated to the buyer. Because of the size and dollar amount of these type of contracts and because the risk to the buyer is great, CPFF contracts need the most auditing. Since this question asked for which one you do not want to use, the answer must be choice A.
A new project manager is about to begin creating the procurement statement of work. One stakeholder wants to add many items to the procurement statement of work. Another stakeholder only wants to describe the functional requirements. The project is important for the project manager's company, but a seller will do the work. How would you advise the project manager?
A. The procurement statement of work should be general to allow the seller to make his own decisions.
B. The procurement statement of work should be general to allow clarification later.
C. The procurement statement of work should be detailed to allow clarification later.
D. The procurement statement of work should be as detailed as necessary for the type of project.
Explanation When the seller has more expertise than the buyer, the procurement statement of work should describe performance or function rather than a complete list of work. In any case, the procurement statement of work should be as detailed as possible.
Professional and Social Responsibility CHAPTER THIRTEEN
A project manager is being considered for a particular project that will deal exclusively with global virtual teams. He only has experience with local teams. What should he do when discussing the opportunity with the sponsor?
A. Since he has led projects and teams, it does not make any difference that these are all global virtual teams, so he does not need to bring it up.
B. He should avoid any conversation regarding the types of teams involved so the sponsor does not know he lacks experience in this area.
C. The project manager should point out to the sponsor that he has not had experience with global virtual teams, but discuss why he thinks he is a good fit for the project anyway.
D. The project manager should point out to the sponsor that he has not had experience with global virtual teams and therefore must decline the assignment.
Explanation Choice A is incorrect because there are many issues that will be different in this project than those the project manager has experience with. Choice B is unethical and constitutes lying about his qualifications. Choice D is not right because the project manager may have so many skills that would benefit the project that this might not be a major problem. We must make sure sponsors know of any gaps in our qualifications when taking on assignments.
A project manager gathered data to perform earned value calculations on his project. He used the results to report to management that the project is under budget and on schedule. After reporting this information, he discovered that the base figures he used in the calculations were incorrect, as they came from an old copy of the project file which had not been updated. What should he do now?
A. He should contact management to make them aware of the error, give the correct information, and explain how he made the mistake.
B. He should contact management and tell them to expect some changes in the next reporting period, and that things are starting to look gloomy.
C. He should use the correct figures to calculate the information when it is time for the next report and ignore the fact the he reported incorrect information.
D. He should tell management that the data he received from team members was incorrect and thus the report was not accurate.
Explanation Choice B is not the truth of the matter. Although things may be gloomy, this is not a new development, since the report was based on old data. Choice C is not right since he is not admitting his mistake, the ethical thing to do, and choice D is blaming someone else for his own error. Choice A is correct since the ethical thing to do is to acknowledge and take responsibility for the error.
A project manager is working with a vendor on a project when she learns that the vendor has bribed a subcontractor to work on this project instead of fulfilling previous commitments to other projects. What should the she do?
A. She should report the offense to management and the project managers of the affected projects.
B. She should not do anything because this is the vendor's problem. The project manager herself didn't do anything wrong.
C. She should report this to other subcontractors so they know they could get more money from the vendor.
D. She should resign from the project so as to remove herself from this type of activity, but keep it to
herself rather than cause problems.
Explanation Choices Band C do not inform management and the other project managers affected, so are not the best way to deal with this. Not reporting this knowledge (choice D) to the appropriate people is unethical. Choice A is correct because it is the responsibility of the project manager to report unethical behavior to management and those affected.
You are in the middle of a new product development for your publicly traded company when you discover that the previous project manager made a US $3,000,000 payment that was not approved
in accordance with your company policies. Luckily, the project cost performance index (CPI) is 1.2. What should you do?
A. Contact your manager.
B. Put the payment in an escrow account.
C. Bury the cost in the largest cost center available.
D. Ignore the payment.
Explanation Project managers must deal with potentially unethical situations like the situation described. Choices Band C hide it. Choice D ignores it. Only choice A deals with it.
A decision has to be made regarding project selection. Several project managers have been asked to give their opinions to the executive committee. Each project manager has a personal interest because the project chosen will drive which project manager will be assigned. The project chosen will be high priority and high visibility, with substantial reward for success. How should the project managers make their recommendations?
A. They should each explain why the project they would be in charge of would be the best to choose and provide documentation to substantiate it.
B. They should recommend the project that would be best for the company in the long run, regardless of who is going to run it.
C. They should make a chart that shows the pros and cons of each project making sure to list more
pros for the one they would run and less cons to prove its value.
D. They should not give an opinion since it would not be objective.
Explanation Although choice D sounds like a good option, it is not the best, since the project managers have been asked for their input. Choices A and C are incorrect because the project managers would be promoting their own interests, rather than that of the organization. Choice B is best since it suggests being objective and making impartial recommendations in the best interest of the organization.
When checking the calendar of a team member to schedule a meeting, you see she has scheduled a meeting with a key stakeholder that you were not informed of. The BEST approach would be to:
A. Avoid mentioning it to the team member but continue to watch her activities.
B. Notify your boss about the problem.
C. Address the concern with the team member's boss.
D. Address the concern with the team member.
Explanation Always look for the choice that deals with and solves the problem. Choice A is withdrawal. Choices Band C would not be appropriate until you learn the root cause of the problem.
Your employee is three days late with a report. Five minutes before the meeting where the topic of the report is to be discussed, she hands you the report. You notice some serious errors in it. What should you do?
A. Cancel the meeting and reschedule when the report is fixed.
B. Go to the meeting and tell the other attendees there are errors in the report.
C. Force the employee to do the presentation and remain silent as the other attendees find the errors.
D. Cancel the meeting and rewrite the report yourself.
Explanation Choice C is penalizing the employee and making her lose face. Choices B, C, and D all involve decreasing the employee's morale. Therefore, the best choice, and the one that does not waste everyone's time, is to cancel the meeting, get to the root cause of the problem, and then fix it and reschedule the meeting (partially mentioned in choice A).
A manager has responsibility for a project that has the support of a senior manager. From the beginning, you have disagreed with the manager as to how the project should proceed and what the deliverables should be. You and she have disagreed over many issues in the past. Your department has been tasked with providing some key work packages for the project. What should you do?
A. Provide the manager with what she needs.
B. Inform your manager of your concerns to get her support.
C. Sit down with the manager at the beginning of the project and attempt to describe why you object to the project, and discover a way to solve the problem.
D. Ask to be removed from the project.
Explanation We assume that proper project management was followed and your opinion was considered during project initiating. Therefore, the best choice would be choice A. You need to provide the work as approved by management.
A large, complex construction project in a foreign country requires coordination to move the required equipment through crowded city streets. To ensure the equipment is transported successfully, your contact in that country informs you that you will have to pay the local police a fee
for coordinating traffic. What should you do?
A. Do not pay the fee because it is a bribe.
B. Eliminate the work.
C. Pay the fee.
D. Do not pay the fee if it is not part of the project estimate.
Explanation This is fee for service paid to a government official and is therefore not a bribe.
A major negotiation with a potential subcontractor is scheduled for tomorrow when you discover there is a good chance the project will be cancelled. What should you do?
A. Do not spend too much time preparing for the negotiations.
B. Cut the negotiations short.
C. Only negotiate major items.
D. Postpone the negotiations.
Explanation Choice D is more ethical and demonstrates good faith. Why spend time in negotiations?
You've been assigned to take over managing a project that should be half complete according to the schedule. After an extensive evaluation, you discover that the project is running far behind schedule, and that the project will probably take twice the time originally estimated by the previous project manager. However, the sponsor has been told that the project is on schedule. What is the BEST course of action?
A. Try to restructure the schedule to meet the project deadline.
B. Report your assessment to the sponsor.
C. Turn the project back to the previous project manager.
D. Move forward with the schedule as planned by the previous project manager and report at the first missed milestone.
Explanation Choice C is not possible, as the previous project manager may have left the company or he may be busy with new projects. It is a form of withdrawal. Moving ahead (choice D) also withdraws from the problem, and withdrawal is not the best choice. There are two problems described here; the project is behind, and the sponsor does not know it. There seem to be two possible right answers, choices A and B. Which is the best thing to deal with? Certainly it would be to work to get the project on schedule, but look at what choice A says. It limits the effort to restructuring the schedule and does not consider other options, such as cutting scope, that might more effectively deal with the problem. Choice A is too limiting. What if the sponsor would agree to change the due date? The best choice in THIS situation is to inform the sponsor of the revised completion time estimate.
You are halfway through a major network rollout. There are 300 locations in the United States with another another 20 in England. A software seller has just released a major software upgrade for some of
the equipment being installed. The upgrade would provide the customer with functionality they requested that was not available at the time the project began. What is the BEST course of action under these circumstances?
A. Continue as planned, your customer has not requested a change.
B. Inform the customer of the upgrade and the impacts to the project's timeline and functionality if the upgrade is implemented.
C. Implement the change and adjust the schedule as necessary because this supports the customer's
D. Implement the change to the remaining sites and continue with the schedule.
Explanation Professional and social responsibility includes looking after the customer's best interests. Therefore, choice A cannot be best. In this case, the schedule and scope are already approved and all changes must go through the change control process. Therefore, choices C and D cannot be best.
You are a project manager for one of many projects in a large and important program. At a high-level status meeting, you note that another project manager has reported her project on schedule. Looking back on your project over the last few weeks, you remember many deliverables from the other project that arrived late. What should you do?
A. Meet with the program manager.
B. Develop a risk control plan.
C. Discuss the issue with your boss.
D. Meet with the other project manager.
Explanation Professional and social responsibility dictates that you should confront the situation first with the other project manager (choice D) to find out if the other project is really on schedule and thereby confirm or deny your information. Choice A or C would be the second step if choice D validates your concern. Choice B would be a more likely choice if it referred to an earlier step in risk management. But choice D remains the best answer.
You have always been asked by your management to cut your project estimate by 10 percent after you have given it to them. The scope of your new project is unclear and there are over 30 stakeholders. Management expects a 25 percent reduction in downtime as a result of the project. Which of the following is the BEST course of action in this situation?
A. Replan to achieve a 35 percent improvement in downtime.
B. Reduce the estimates and note the changes in the risk response plan.
C. Provide an accurate estimate of the actual costs and be able to support it.
D. Meet with the team to identify where you can find 10 percent savings.
Explanation This is a common problem on projects that many inexperienced project managers handle by doing choice B or D. If your estimates are accurate, you are ethically bound to stand by them (choice C). Management's only option to cut cost is to support the project manager's looking for options related to the other project constraints. Choice A does not address costs, the issue
Your employee is three days late with a report. She walks into a meeting where the report is to be discussed and hands you a copy five minutes before the topic is to be discussed. You notice some serious errors in the report. How could this have been prevented?
A. Require periodic updates from the employee.
B. Coach and mentor the employee.
C. Make sure the employee was competent to do the work.
D. Cancel the meeting earlier because you did not have a chance to review the report.
Explanation Both choices A and D could have prevented the outcome, but D is the only one that would ensure you were not sitting in a meeting with a document that had not been reviewed.
You are in the middle of a project when you discover that a software seller for your project is having major difficulty keeping employees due to a labor dispute. Many other projects in your company are also using the company's services. What should you do?
A. Attempt to keep the required people on your project.
B. Tell the other project managers in your company about the labor problem.
C. Contact the company and advise it that you will cancel its work on the project unless it settles its labor dispute.
D. Cease doing business with the company.
Explanation Choice A puts your interests over those of your company so it cannot be the best choice. There is no indication that the labor dispute has caused any problems, so there is no need
to cancel its work (choice C) or cease doing business with the company (choice D). The best choice would be to inform others in your company.
All of the following are the responsibility of a project manager EXCEPT:
A. Maintain the confidentiality of customer confidential information.
B. Determine the legality of company procedures.
C. Ensure that a conflict of interest does not compromise the legitimate interest of the customer.
D. Provide accurate and truthful representations in cost estimates.
Explanation The project manager is neither empowered nor competent to determine the legality of company procedures. NOTE: There is an important distinction between practices and procedures. All unethical practices should be reported. For example, a project manager must report an act of fraud. Fraud is not a company procedure (normally). However, a project manager is not in a position to determine whether company procedures comply with existing law.
In order to complete work on your projects, you have been provided confidential information from all of your clients. A university contacts you to help it in its research. Such assistance would require you to provide the university with some of the client data from your files. What should you do?
A. Release the information, but remove all references to the clients' names.
B. Provide high-level information only.
C. Contact your clients and seek permission to disclose the information.
D. Disclose the information.
Explanation Confidential information should be respected (not disclosed to third parties without the express approval of the client). If you picked choice A, remember that the clients own the confidential information. See, not all professional and social responsibility questions are tough!
Management has promised you part of the incentive fee from the customer if you complete the project early. While finalizing a major deliverable, your team informs you that the deliverable meets the requirements in the contract but will not provide the functionality the customer needs. If the deliverable is late, the project will not be completed early. What action should you take?
A. Provide the deliverable as it is.
B. Inform the customer of the situation and work out a mutually agreeable solution.
C. Start to compile a list of delays caused by the customer to prepare for negotiations.
D. Cut out other activities in a way that will be unnoticed to provide more time to fix the deliverable.
Explanation Choices A and D ignore the customer's best interests. Any delays would have already been resolved with other change orders, so choice C is not appropriate. The ethical solution is to talk with the customer (choice B). You might still be able to win the incentive fee and find a mutually agreeable solution. Think of the good will that will come from telling the customer.
You have just discovered an error in the implementation plan that will prevent you from meeting a milestone date. The BEST thing you can do is:
A. Develop options to meet the milestone date.
B. Change the milestone date.
C. Remove any discussion about due dates in the project status report.
D. Educate the team about the need to meet milestone dates.
Explanation Only choice A solves the problem. Choice B is unethical. Choice C violates the rule to report honestly.
While testing the strength of concrete poured on your project, you discover that over 35 percent of the concrete does not meet your company's quality standards. You feel certain the concrete will function as it is, and you don't think the concrete needs to meet the quality level specified. What should you do?
A. Change the quality standards to meet the level achieved.
B. List in your reports that the concrete simply meets our quality needs:'
C. Ensure the remaining concrete meets the standard.
D. Report the lesser quality level and try to find a solution.
Explanation Can you explain why choices A and B are unethical? Choice C simply withdraws from the problem and is therefore not the best solution. The only possible choice is D. That choice would involve quality and other experts to find a resolution.
You are the project manager for a new international project, and your project team includes people from four countries. Most of the team members have not worked on similar projects before, but the project has strong support from senior management. What is the BEST thing to do to ensure that cultural differences do not interfere with the project?
A. Spend a little more time creating the work breakdown structure and making sure it is complete.
B. As the project manager, make sure you choose your words carefully whenever you
C. Ask one person at each team meeting to describe something unique about their culture.
D. Carefully encode all of the project manager's communications.
Explanation You should have noticed that only choices A and C involve more people than just the project manager. Since this is an issue involving everyone, everyone should be involved. Choice A may be a good idea in all cases; however, it does not specifically address cultural issues. Therefore, the answer must be C.
A project has a tight budget when you begin negotiating with a seller for a piece of equipment. The seller has told you that the equipment price is fixed. Your manager has told you to negotiate the cost with the seller. What is your BEST course of action?
A. Make a good faith effort to find a way to decrease the cost.
B. Postpone negotiations until you can convince your manager to change his mind.
C. Hold the negotiations, but only negotiate other aspects of the project.
D. Cancel the negotiations.
Explanation There is always a way to decrease costs on the project. How about offering to feature the seller in your next television ad? The best choice is A.
A certified PMP is contacted by PMI and asked to provide information regarding another project manager who has been reported to be involved in unethical activities. The PMP-certified project manager knows his information would support the accusations and the other project manager in question is a friend. He decides that the best thing to do would be to not respond, and therefore neither confirm nor deny the accusations. Would this be the right thing to do?
A. Yes. It would be a safe thing to do to just ignore the request and stay out of it.
B. No. If he knows something, he is required by the Code of Ethics and Professional Conduct conduct to cooperate.
C. No. It would be better to deny the charges against his friend to maintain the relationship.
D. Yes. It is expected that project managers will support each other in the field against outsiders.
Explanation Choices A and D do not support PMI's request for information. Choice C would be lying. Choice B is correct, as PMI's Code of Ethics and Professional Conduct requires PMP-certified project managers to report unethical behavior and violations of the code. The PMP-certified project manager is obligated to cooperate with PMI in collecting information.
A project manager discovers a defect in a deliverable due to the customer under contract today. The project manager knows the customer does not have the technical understanding to notice the defect. The deliverable meets the contract requirements, but it does not meet the project manager's quality standard. What should the project manager do in this situation?
A. Issue the deliverable and get formal acceptance from the customer.
B. Note the problem in the lessons learned so future projects do not encounter the same problem.
C. Discuss the issue with the customer.
D. Inform the customer that the deliverable will be late.
Explanation Choice A does not follow the rule to protect the best interests of the customer. Choice B does not solve the problem. Choice D will cause a default of contract. Although the deliverable meets the contractual requirements, it is best to bring the problem to the customer's attention (choice C) so an option that does no harm can be found.
Management tells a project manager to subcontract part of the project to a company that management has worked with many times. Under these circumstances, the project manager should be MOST concerned about:
A. Making sure the company has the qualifications to complete the project.
B. Meeting management expectations of time.
C. The cost of the subcontracted work.
D. The contract terms and conditions.
Explanation The first thing that should come to mind is whether this is an ethical situation and whether it violates any company rules or laws. If it does not violate any of these, it would be best to check qualifications (choice A). There is no justification to rate choices B, C, or D higher than any other choice.
Three students from another country are working as interns on a project. The project manager has arranged for some games to play as team-building activities to help create a close knit sense of team with the group members. At the event where the activities are taking place, the three students refuse to participate, claiming the behavior involved is unacceptable in their country and they would be very uncomfortable participating. What should the project manager do?
A. He should tell the students that they need to become familiar with the how things are done in this country and that they must play along.
B. He should excuse the students from playing and arrange to discuss with them alternative activities that they would be more comfortable with.
C. He should report the students to their functional manager and request they be removed from the project since their attitude will have a negative impact on the project.
D. He should tell the students they are excused from the activities and to not attend any team building activities in the future.
Explanation Choice A is forcing the team members to do something that is unacceptable in their culture. Choice C penalizes the team members for expressing their cultural preferences, which is not a valid reason to remove them from the team. Excluding them from all future team building (choice D) does not show respect for their culture, and would have a negative impact on the project. Choice B is best because it demonstrates respect for cultural ,differences.
A project manager discovers an urgent need for outsourced resources on the project. He knows he has the money to cover the cost of these resources. He goes to the procurement manager and explains the situation, insisting a contract be drawn up today so he can obtain resources and circumvent the standard procedure. Is this the correct process to follow?
A. Yes, of course. For urgent needs, it is not necessary to follow the organization's procedure regarding procurement.
B. Yes. Urgent needs from projects should always be dealt with immediately as directed by the project manager.
C. No. The procurement manager has a process to follow when creating contracts that helps protect the company and its projects.
D. No. The procurement manager should be checking in with the project manager to see if he is in need of a contract, rather than making the project manager come and ask for one.
Explanation Procrastination or a lack of planning on the part of the project manager does not create an emergency situation for the procurement manager. Circumventing the process (choice A) is not ethical. Choice B implies that projects always come first, and that the project manager has authority over the procurement manager. Choice D is not a common practice, nor is it logical. Choice C is the correct answer because it demonstrates respect for the procurement manager and the processes in place to protect the organization.
The engineering department wants the project objective to be a 10 percent improvement in throughput. The information technology department wants no more than 5 percent of its resources to be used on the project. Management, who is also your boss, wants the project team to decrease tax liability. The BEST thing you can do is:
A. Put a plan together that meets all the objectives.
B. Have these people get together and agree on one objective.
C. Include the engineering and information technology objectives but hold further meetings
regarding management's objective.
D. Include only management's objective.
Explanation Did this one catch you? All deliverables must be quantifiable. Management's objective cannot be measured and therefore, needs more work. That means choice A is not correct. All
parties rarely agree on all objectives (choice B). All the objectives should be met, but they must be quantifiable, so choice D is not correct. You need to have more discussions with management so you can make their objective quantifiable.
You are finalizing the monthly project status report due now to your manager when you discover that several project team members are not reporting actual hours spent on project activities. This results in skewed project statistics. What is the MOST appropriate action to be taken?
A. Discuss the impacts of these actions with team members.
B. Report the team members' actions to their functional managers.
C. Continue reporting information as presented to you.
D. Provide accurate and truthful representations in all project reports.
Explanation The project manager's responsibility is to provide truthful project information. The project manager should thereafter discuss the impacts of his or her actions with the team members. If that does not work, the next step is to report it to the functional managers.