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CASE STUDY SIMULATES A MICROSOFT PROJECT MANAGEMENT SCENARIO

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CASE STUDY SIMULATES A MICROSOFT PROJECT MANAGEMENT SCENARIO

Overview

 

This case study simulates a project management scenario where the student takes on the role of project manager. Students are required to use Microsoft project management software as part of this assessment task.

 

This is a group assignment with a maximum of three members per group. However, note that all members are also expected to attempt all parts of the assignment individually as assessment item sub-deliverables 1- 5. Members of the group are required to submit their own individual attempt for each of the sub-deliverables in Moodle before the group meets to consolidate answers to produce the "group solution". There are separate submission areas and due dates for the individual submissions . On time submission of the 5 sub-deliverables is worth a total of 5 marks, but these submissions may also be used to assess individual contributions and may impact on a student’s final mark.

 

Groups must meet at least once a week to produce the “group solution” for the work scheduled for completion in that week. This solution should then be added to the developing final group solution.

 

It is also important to meet early in week 10 to produce the updated schedule to be used to complete the Part C questions and status report. Each group is responsible for providing their own status data. This means that the group members must collaborate on this and ensure that all members are working with the same GD_PartC.mpp file when completing the Part C questions. This is explained further in part C.

 

There is one final group solution to be submitted at the end of the assignment. It is worth 35 marks and is to be submitted by only one member of the group. The names and student ids of all members of the group must appear clearly on the coversheet of the final assessment submission.

 

Peer assessment and your individual submissions will also be used to assess group member contributions. If any member of a team is not contributing satisfactorily to the group then he/she may have marks adjusted and/or be asked to leave the group and be required to complete the assignment as an individual.

 

If you are having difficulties within your group you must alert your tutor/lecturer as early as possible.

 

To assist students in their assessment solution development the following information is provided:

 

  • A product development case description.
  • Specific assessment questions that must be answered.
  • Information regarding the submission of the assessment.
  • Marking criteria.

 

Where necessary, students are expected to find relevant information in the academic literature to justify their answers. Students may have to make assumptions and argue the pros and cons for any recommendations that they make. Any assumptions made must be clearly documented in the answers.

  • Background

 

Great Devices is a medium sized company that develops and manufactures medical devices. You are an employee of Great Devices and work as project manager in the product development department. The people involved in this case study are:

 

  • You (Mr. Kennedy), the project manager.

 

  • Thurlings, the Director of Product Development.

 

  • Douglas, the Director of Marketing and Portfolio Management.

 

  • Yang, the Human Resource Manager.

 

  • Functional line managers in the research and development department (Mr. Software, Mr. Mechanics, Mr. Electronics, Mr. Production and Mr. Validation).

 

  • Engineers and members of your project team.

 

You have been leading a small team of experienced engineers conducting a technical feasibility study to investigate if it is possible to modify one of the company’s standard products to create a product variant to satisfy the needs of veterinarians. You are planning to hold an M1 Milestone Concept Review on Friday the 20th May 2016. (For the purposes of this assignment assume that this is next week.) Assume that the start date of the project will therefore be Monday 23rdMay 2016 and that this is the date for the M1 milestone. The project management milestone concept review checklist is provided as Appendix 1. The concept review is one of the milestones in the company’s product development process.

 

The need for the new product has been identified by the marketing department lead by Ms. Douglas, Director of Marketing and Portfolio Management. Ms. Douglas provided your small project team with a product brief, outlining the special end user, sales and service requirements to supplement the requirements already established for the standard product. She also developed the business case for the product.

 

Your team has come up with a unique novel product concept that you believe should be protected by a patent. The concept satisfies the need perfectly. The feasibility work carried out with a user focus group showed that the user requirements were sound and that the technical complexity of the development was medium to low.

 

2.2 Milestones

 

The milestones your team will use are:

 

  1. M1 Concept review (At this point the system architecture and feasibility study will be complete. A go/no-go decision for detailed design will be made at this milestone, i.e. at the end of the concept review meeting).
  1. M2 Design review complete (At this point the overall design will be complete. A go/no-go decision for procurement will be made at this milestone).

 

  1. P1 prototype 1 builds to start (After an internal project review confirming that the product prototype is able to be manufactured with the quality level expected.).
  1. P2 prototype 2 builds to start (After an internal project review confirming that the product prototype is able to be manufactured with the quality level expected).
  1. M3 Final Product review complete (At this point the product quality is verified based on the product validation testing carried out on the last prototype. A go/no-go decision for production ramp-up is made. If a “go decision is made” 2000 devices should then be produced ready for market.)
  1. M4 Launch review completes (A go/no-go decision depending if all business areas are ready for market launch and 2000 devices are in stock. M4 milestone is the end of the project).

 

2.3 Initial Data

 

The system architecture of the product has been used as the basis for the project organisation and the work breakdown structure. As the project manager you have accepted the tasks of creating the compiled project schedule and allocating resources.

 

You have obtained the following information:

 

  1. A work break down structure (WBS), resource estimates and some dependencies summarised in Table 1 below.
  2. Production provided information about the prototype builds. His input is summarized in the Activity-In-the-Box (AIB) network diagrams in Figure 1.

 

Note that the following resource abbreviations are used:

 

  • Electronic Engineer (EE)

 

  • Software Engineer (SE)

 

  • Mechanical Engineer (ME)

 

  • Test Engineer (TE)

 

  • Production Engineer (PE)

 

  • Technical writer (TW)

 

  • Printed Wire Board (circuit board) (PWB)

 

  • Electromagnetic Compliance (EMC)

 

Table 1- Work Breakdown Structure

 

Activity

Description

Predecessor(s)

Resource and

To be

 

 

 

 

duration Estimates

completed

 

 

 

 

(in person-weeks)

before the

 

 

 

 

 

review

 

 

 

 

 

prior to

 

 

 

 

 

milestone

1.

Electronics

 

 

 

 

 

1.1 PWB outline modifications

Modifications required in

M1

1 person-week of

 

 

 

existing product for new

 

EE.

 

 

 

product

 

 

 

 

1.2 Component selection

Selection of electronic

1.1

2 person-weeks of

M2

 

 

components. Should be

 

EE.

 

 

 

started together with 1.3.

 

 

 

 

1.3 P1 circuit design and PWB

Creation of circuit diagram

1.1

2 person-weeks of

M2

 

layout

and PWB layout. Breadboard

 

EE.

 

 

 

solution created. Should be

 

 

 

 

 

started together with 1.2.

 

 

 

 

1.4 P1 electronics verification

Electronic verification tests

1.3, P1 build

2 person-week of

 

 

tests

with the use of the P1

complete (5.5)

EE.

 

 

 

prototypes.

 

 

 

 

1.5 P2 circuit design

Electronic improvements to

1.4

1 person-week of

P2

 

improvements

circuit diagram, component

 

EE.

 

 

 

selection and layout.

 

 

 

 

1.6 P2 electronics verification

Electronic verification tests

1.5, P2 build

2 person-weeks of

M3

 

tests

with the use of the P2

complete (6.5)

one EE.

 

 

 

prototypes.

 

 

 

 

1.7 Thermal verification tests

Verification that electronic

1.5 , P2 build

1 person-week of

 

 

 

heat generation and heat

complete (6.5)

EE.

 

 

 

transmission through covers

 

 

 

 

 

is acceptable.

 

 

 

 

1.8 EMC verification tests

Verification of compliance

1.7

1 person-week of

M3

 

 

with electromagnetic

 

EE.

 

 

 

compliance regulations.

 

 

 

2.

Software

 

 

 

 

 

 

Page | 5

 

2.1 Software specification

Specification of the software

M1

3 person-week of

 

 

functionality based on user

 

SE.

 

 

requirements.

 

 

 

2.2 Software and database

Design software and database

2.1

3 person-weeks of

M2

design

 

 

SE

 

2.3 User interface development

Software additions due to

M2,2.2

1 person-week of

 

 

modified menus and

 

SE.

 

 

functional keys.

 

 

 

2.4 Database development

Software additions to the

M2, 2.2

1 person-week of

 

 

device database.

 

SE.

 

2.5 Development of device to

Software additions to the

M2, 2.2

1 person-week of

 

PC interface

communication protocol

 

SE.

 

 

between the device and the

 

 

 

 

PC.

 

 

 

2.6 Development of PC software

Software

2.4,2.2

2 person-weeks of

 

 

additions/modifications to the

 

SE.

 

 

PC software functionality to

 

 

 

 

support the new device

 

 

 

 

functionality.

 

 

 

2.7 R1 release creation

Creation of the R1 (release 1)

2.3, 2.4,

3 person-days of

 

 

software for testing

2.5,2.6

one SE.

 

2.8 R1 release tests

Testing of the R1 release and

2.7

1 person-week of

 

 

identification of errors.

 

SE.

 

2.9  R1 error correction and

Creation of the R1 software

2.8

1 person-week of

P1

user interface

release to be used with the P1

 

SE.

 

improvements

prototype.

 

 

 

2.10 R1 testing with prototype

Testing of the R1 software

Prototype 1

1 person-week of

 

1

with the first prototype

build

SE

 

 

 

complete

 

 

 

 

(5.5), 2.9

 

 

2.11 Documentation

Development of user and

2.10

4 person-weeks of

 

 

technical documentation

 

TW

 

 

manuals

 

 

 

2.12 R2 modifications

Modifications to the software

2.10

1 person-week of

 

 

after testing with prototype 1

 

SE

 

2.13 R2 release creation

Creation of the R2 software

2.12

2 person-days of

P2

 

release to be used with the P2

 

SE.

 

 

prototype.

 

 

 

2.14 R2 release tests with

Testing of the R2 release with

2.13,

1 person-week of

 

prototype 2

prototype 2 and identification

Prototype

SE.

 

 

of errors.

build 2

 

 

 

 

complete (6.5)

 

 

2.15 R2 error corrections

Correction of errors

2.14

1 person-week of

 

 

 

 

SE.

 

2.16 R2 interoperability tests

Testing of interoperability

2.15

1 person-week of

 

 

with 3rd party accessory

 

SE.

 

 

devices.

 

 

 

2.17 R2 interoperability error

R2 interoperability error

2.16

1 person-week of

 

correction

correction

 

SE.

 

2.18 Finalise documentation

Finalise documentation

2.16, 2.11

1 person-week of

 

 

including interoperability

 

TW

 

 

information

 

 

 

2.19 R3 release creation

Creation of the R3 software

2.17

2 person-days of

 

 

release.

 

one SE.

 

2.20 R3 tests and corrections

Testing (and correcting) of

2.19

1 person-week of

 

 

the R3 release

 

SE.

 

2.21 R4 sales release creation

Creation of the R4 software

2.18,2.20

3 person-days of

M3

 

sales release

 

SE.

 

  1. Mechanics

 

 

 

 

3.1 Industrial design

Design of the industrial

M1

3 person-weeks of

M2

 

design for the device.

 

ME/industrial

 

 

 

 

designer.

 

3.2 PWB outline modifications

Modifications of the PWB to

3.1

1 person-week of

 

 

fit the industrial design, new

 

ME.

 

 

components and usability

 

 

 

 

requirements.

 

 

 

 

 

Page | 6

 

3.3

P1 mechanical CAD design

CAD design of mechanical

3.2

3 person-weeks of

 

 

 

 

plastic parts and metal parts

 

ME.

 

 

 

 

for the device.

 

 

 

 

3.4

Tolerance stack analysis

Analysis of the mechanical

3.3

1 person-week of

 

M2

 

 

tolerance stacks compared to

 

ME.

 

 

 

 

part tooling and moulding

 

 

 

 

 

 

capabilities.

 

 

 

 

3.5

P1 mechanical part analysis

Physical analysis of moulded

P1 build

1 person-week of

 

 

 

 

plastic parts and sheet metal

complete (5.5)

ME.

 

 

 

 

parts.

 

 

 

 

3.6

P2 mechanical part

Modification of moulding and

3.5

2 person-weeks of

 

P2

 

modifications

sheet metal tools used for P2

 

ME.

 

 

 

 

parts.

 

 

 

 

3.7

Mechanical tool approval

Evaluation of P2 mechanical

P2 build

3 person-weeks of

 

M3

 

 

parts and approval of

complete (6.5)

ME.

 

 

 

 

moulding and sheet metal

 

 

 

 

 

 

tools used in part

 

 

 

 

 

 

manufacture.

 

 

 

 

  1. Verification

 

 

 

 

 

4.1

Test plan creation

Creation of a plan

M1

1 person-week of

 

M2

 

 

documenting what is to be

 

TE.

 

 

 

 

tested.

 

 

 

 

4.2

Component tests

Test of key component

After delivery

1 person-week of

 

 

 

 

reliability to various standard

of components

TE

 

 

 

 

tests like drop and humidity.

(for P1 – i.e.

 

 

 

 

 

 

5.1) , 4.1

 

 

 

4.3

Module tests

Test of module functionality

P1 build

1 person-week of

 

 

 

 

after assembly.

complete

TE.

 

 

 

 

 

(5.5), 4.2

 

 

 

4.4

System integration tests

Test of integration of

4.3

2 person-weeks of

 

P2

 

 

modules.

 

TE.

 

 

4.5

Product validation tests

Test of “final/prototype 2”

4.4, P2 build

2 person-weeks of

 

 

 

 

product against reliability to

complete(6.5)

TE

 

 

 

 

various standard tests like

 

 

 

 

 

 

drop and humidity and end

 

 

 

 

 

 

user requirements.

 

 

 

 

4.6

Technical Construction File

Creation of documentation

4.5

1 person-week of

 

 

 

compilation

for regulatory approvals.

 

TE.

 

 

4.7

Type approval and regulatory

Approvals from regulatory

4.6

4 weeks by the

 

M3

 

approval tests

authorities.

 

regulatory

 

 

 

 

 

 

authorities (not one

 

 

 

 

 

 

of the project team

 

 

 

 

 

 

resources). This is

a

 

 

 

 

 

“Fixed duration”

 

 

 

 

 

 

specified by the

 

 

 

 

 

 

regulatory

 

 

 

 

 

 

authorities..

 

 

 

Notes:

 

  1. One “person-week” is a “unit of work” representing the work done by one person in one week. It means that the task will normally take one person one week to complete. Note that you can assume that a week refers to a normal working week of 5 days (Mon-Fri) with people working 8 hours per day. This is the default in Microsoft Project. Unless otherwise stated you can also assume a linear relationship, i.e. 3 person-weeks will take one person 3 weeks or 3 people one week. Note that this is not necessarily the case in practice. Refer to the discussion of the “mythical man-month” in your text book (Brooks’ law, chapter 9). In addition, some tasks will be a fixed duration (e.g. delivery times).

 

  1. For the purposes of this assignment (to reduce variability in solutions and complications for the markers) build your Part A1 schedule by assuming that you allocate one resource (i.e. one person with the required skills) to each task. In that case, if the task required 3 person-weeks of an EE you would assign one EE to the task and give it a duration of 3 weeks. Assume that before each milestone is reached, an internal review has been completed and a go/no-go decision has been made. Allow one day for each review to make the “go/no-go” decision after all the “milestone review” predecessors are complete. All the “milestone review predecessors” must be complete before the 1 day for the “go/no-go” review decision.

 

  1. The last column in the table titled “ To be completed before the review prior to milestone” indicates where a task is a predecessor of the one day “milestone go/no-go review”. For example, task 1.2 is one of the predecessors that must be completed before the M2 review. The “M2 review” should take one day and is the predecessor of the M2 milestone (when the milestone is reached it means a decision has been made) . For the purposes of this assignment, you are not required to add resources to these “review” tasks. You can assume the reviews and go/no-go decisions are carried out by management.

 

  1. For the purposes of this assignment, add a “Milestone Reviews” summary task after the last task (which should be “Production of 2000 devices”). The “Milestone Review” should be out-dented at the same level as the Electronics summary task. The “Milestone Reviews” summary task is to be followed by the indented list of “one day milestone reviews” for M2 to M4. The start date of the project followed the M1 concept review.

 

  1. Add a “Milestones” summary task after the reviews. The Milestones summary task should be out-dented at the same level as the Electronics summary task. This summary task should have the milestones M1, M2, P1, P2, M3 and M4 indented underneath it. Note that the milestones should be the last items on the “task list” for your schedule.

 

Figure 1 - Activity in Box Network Diagrams for Production

 

 

 

 

P1 component lead-time

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

P1 prototype build

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

P1

 

 

 

 

M2

5.1

 

Suppliers

 

4w

5.5

Production

3d

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Engineer

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

P1 PWB manufacture and delivery

 

5.2

Supplier

3w

 

 

 

 

 

P1 mechanical part lead-time

 

 

 

5.3

Supplier

2w

 

 

 

 

P1 assembly and production test preparation

 

 

 

 

Hint: Remember that the

 

R1 software is also required for the P1 prototype build go/no-go review (see previous table)

 

 

5.4

Production

3w

 

Engineer

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

P2 component lead-time

 

 

 

 

 

P2 prototype build

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

P2

 

 

 

 

 

1.4

 

 

 

 

6.1

 

Suppliers

 

4w

 

 

 

6.5

Production

3d

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Engineer

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

P2 PWB manufacture and

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

delivery

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

6.2

 

Supplier

 

3w

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Hint: Remember that the

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

R2 software is also

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

P2 mechanical part lead-time

 

 

 

required for the P2

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • Title: CASE STUDY SIMULATES A MICROSOFT PROJECT MANAGEMENT SCENARIO
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