Project Progress Pro, Process Control Project Tracking

Project Progress Pro 2018

CFO approval is often the primary objective for the business case
.

Project tracking with Process Control
Published by Solution Matrix Ltd
ISBN 978­929500019 2018
Excel-based tracking and charging   US$ 39

Add Project Progress Pro to shopping cart

When Your Project Has to Finish on Time—Take Control!

Project Progress Pro brings the power of statistical process control to project tracking. Project Progress Pro:

  • Gives early warning signals when the risk of a late finish rises.
  • Compares actual progress to the original project plan, continuously.
  • Provides visual updates on schedule gains and losses, easily understood by everyone.

Project Progress Pro shows project progress by plotting actual progress in time against the original plan critical path. Control lines automatically appear in the plotting space to signal high or low probabilities for completing the project on schedule.

  • When Actual Progress crosses a low probability control line, managers may decide to increase project effort and resources to bring the project back on schedule.
  • Crossing a high probability control line means an early finish is very likely.

Track Progress With Process Control

The progress plot is similar to statistical process-control charts used in manufacturing. The chart puts current progress into historical context, while serving as a focus for discussion by the project team and senior leaders alike.

Example project progress chart

Project Progress Pro control chart. The original plan called for project finish in 32.5 weeks. However, the control chart warned in week 8 that a late finish was likely. The slope of the Actual Project Progress line shows everyone that tasks consistently took longer than plan. As a result, had management taken action in week 8, an on time finish might have been possible.

Project Process Control Charting Made Easy

Statistical control charts of this kind have been in use since 1988, when the idea first appeared in IEEE Management. Until now, however, only a very few project managers used them—for good reason. This is because setting up a control chart called for a good knowledge of probability theory and other mathematics.

Now, however, Project Progress Pro puts process control tracking in reach of everyone, even those with very little background in statistics or math.The Excel-based tool requires only a few very simple inputs, beginning with just the number of critical path tasks and an estimated most likely time for each. Project Progress Pro does the rest, setting up the chart structure, placing the control lines, and plotting your actual progress against the original plan.

Progress Pro tracks projects with up to 12 critical path tasks. Progress Pro works best with Microsoft Excel 2007 or later, on Apple Macintosh and Windows PCs.Marty Schmidt, President, Solution Matrix LtdAbout the author, Marty Schmidt
President, Solution Matrix Ltd.

Order Online and Download Today!

All orders process through PayPal, providing you with complete PayPal security, privacy, and buyer protection. Click Checkout on the Shopping Cart to pay by MasterCard, Visa, American Express, Discover, or PayPal account. You do not need a PayPal account to pay by credit or debit card.

Receive your receipt from Solution Matrix Ltd and PayPal immediately upon ordering. Receive download instructions by email shortly afterwards.

Receive your receipt from Solution Matrix Ltd and PayPal immediately upon ordering. Receive product download instructions by email shortly afterwards.

Order Project Progress Pro Excel Tracking System

Project Progress Pro Tracking System    US $39

Add Project Progress Pro to shopping cart

Order Project Manger Power Package 840
  • Business Case Templates 2018, Word, Excel, PowerPoint Pkg
  • Business Case Essentials, PDF ebook, 4th Ed
  • Project Progress Pro  Tracking System

Save 25%. Order Pkg 840, Download Today! US $89

Add Project Manager Power Package 340 to shopping cart

Order the Master Case Builder Package 490
  • Business Case Essentials PDF ebook, 4th Ed
  • Business Case Guide PDF ebook, 3rd Ed
  • Business Case Templates 2018, Excel, Word, PowerPoint, PDF package
  • Financial Metrics Pro Excel-based ebook, 4th Ed
  • Financial Modeling Pro Excel-based ebook, 4th Ed

Save 25%. Order Pkg 490, Download Today! US $149

Add Master Case Builder Package 490 to shopping cart

© Solution Matrix Ltd 2004-2018

Find us on Facebook Google+Linkedin
Updated 2018-12-18

Business Case Guide, The Recognized Authority

The Business Case Guide 3rd Ed

CFO approval is often the primary objective for the business case
.

3rd Edition ISBN  978­-1929500147
by Marty Schmidt
Solution Matrix Ltd 2018
PDF ebook, 424 pages  $49

Add Business Case Guide 3rd Ed to shopping cart.

The Recognized Standard. Everything You Need to Know About the Business Case in private industry, government, or non profit organizations.

The Classic “How To” Guide

Written with the depth and detail that finance and business planning professionals require, the Guide is also rich in practical help and examples for those with little or no background in those areas. The latest edition of the Business Case Guide provides clear, practical answers to questions like these:

Business Case Templates Package, Build Your Business Case

Business Case Templates  Package

CFO approval is often the primary objective for the business case
.

2018 EditionEdition
Solution Matrix Ltd 2018
Excel, Word, PowerPoint, PDF Package  US$ 39

Add Business Case Templates 2018 to shopping cart.

Templates 2018: Because sometimes a back-of-the-envelope ROI just won’t do. Because … 

Sometimes You Need a Real Business Case!

The Business Case Templates 2017 package is designed to guide you to a professional quality business case quickly and easily. Build your case in the shortest possible time, free of uncertainty about case structure and content.

Complete the Word, Excel, and PowerPoint templates in the package to build a professional quality business case report, ready for presentation and review. Know that your case will stand up to critical scrutiny from financial professionals, analysts, and skeptical managers.

Templates 2018 have a proven track record in companies, non profits, and governments, worldwide, since 2004. Templates 2018 get results because they focus above all on the reasoning and evidence that “make the case.” Continue reading “Business Case Templates Package, Build Your Business Case”

Financial Modeling Pro, Learning Tutorial and Templates

Business Case Essentials ebook

4th Edition, ISBN 9781929500086
Published bySolution Matrix Ltd 2017
Excel-based ebook handbook, templates  US$39

Add Financial Modeling Pro to Shopping Cart

Learn to Build the Financial Model!
Build a Professional Quality Model in the Shortest Possible Time!

Build Your Financial Model in the Shortest Possible Time

Financial Modeling Pro is a complete teaching tutorial and handbook, complete with live examples and templates you can copy for your own models. Learn to build, analyze, and present the model for cost/benefit estimates and business case scenarios. Learn in the shortest possible time!

At the heart of every serious cost/benefit estimate lies a financial model. The model is the vehicle for making cost and benefit impacts concrete, for analyzing cash flow, and for recommending action. The model:

  • Shows everyone exactly where your cost and benefit figures come from.
  • Enables “What if?” questions about important assumptions for financial estimates.
  • Provides the basis for measuring and minimizing risks.

As a result, the case for choosing one action over another is made with the financial model, and without it, the case all but disappears.

A Practical Step-by-Step Guide

Nevertheless, the practical steps in model building are rarely taught or explained in clear, easy-to-follow form. This is a serious problem for those who must develop support for projects, programs, acquisitions, or major actions, but who have little or no background in finance and only basic spreadsheet skills. Yet they must produce cost/benefit estimates or a solid business case with a professional quality financial model in a very few days or weeks.

You may be in this position, or you may have many years of business case experience and still need answers to questions like these:

  • Where do I start building the financial model?  And, how do I specify model inputs and outputs?
  • What kinds of spreadsheet skills will I need? And, how do I get up to speed quickly?”
  • Exactly how do I estimate cost and benefit cash flows for my proposal?
  • How do I know my model will stand up in front of our CEO? And, will it survive scrutiny by our CFO?
  • How do I use the  model to ask “What if?” questions. And how do I use the model for risk and sensitivity analysis?
  • Most importantly, how do I “make the case” for my proposal?

Tutorial, Handbook, Working Templates

For business people facing such questions, Solution Matrix Ltd. announces a new, expanded version of the popular ebook, Financial Modeling Pro V4™.  Designed in the same tradition as the best-selling companion tool, Financial Metrics Pro, Financial Modeling Pro is

  • A practical step-by step tutorial on building the dynamic model for your cost/benefit estimates or business case scenarios.
  • A reference handbook for simple and advanced cost/benefit estimation methods and best-in-class modeling techniques.
  • Working examples and templates you can modify and copy into your own models.

Begin building your own modeling system as soon as you begin working with Financial Modeling Pro. Move step by step through Modeling Pro to complete your model.  Because you are working in a live spreadsheet environment, you can try out examples as you read about them. And, you can test template components before adding them to your own models.

The Influence Diagram: Snapshot of Your Model

Financial Modeling Pro presents influence diagramming, a simple visual technique for illustrating the structure of spreadsheet formulas and models.

Financial Modeling Pro influence diagram

 Build to An Architecture

Modeling Pro illustrates simple and complex model architecture with clear, easy to understand images.

Complex business case financial model

Use Your Model for Risk and Sensitivity Analysis

Financial Modeling pro shows how to use your model for risk analysis, using Monte Carlo simulation. The example shows a 90% confidence interval estimate for net cash flow, based on simulation with a dynamic financial model:.

Financial Modeling Pro Risk analysis

What’s In Modeling Pro 4th Edition?

  • The Financial Modeling Pro Tool: A 20-sheet Excel workbook, with teaching text, and live working examples. Hyperlink navigation throughout and links to online resources.
  • Introduction to financial modeling: the nature and purpose of financial models.
  • Basic skills and good practice in spreadsheet modeling
  • The Influence diagram as a first step in modeling costs and benefits. The influence diagram shows in visual terms the model structure. The diagram also facilitates input from others, shows where to use Excel formulas, and builds model credibility.
  • Building the Simple Cost/Benefit Model: Build the model to forecast a single cost or benefit item.
  • Building the Complex Model. Modeling principles for large, complex models, with a focus on usability, clarity, and accuracy. Includes business case scenario models.
  • Estimating individual costs and benefits: linear and non linear estimates, projecting from history, and benefit “ramp up.”
  • Risk and sensitivity analysis with the financial model. Learn how to use the model to measure uncertainty and risks (the probabilities of different outcomes). Also use sensitivity analysis to show which assumptions are important in controlling results.
  • Working models and template examples. These adapt easily to fit your own modeling situation. Modeling Pro includes:
    • Simple models for single cost/benefit estimates
    • Cash flow statement scenarios for a simple business case
    • A complete working model system for a complex business case analysis.

Financial Modeling Pro works best with Microsoft Excel for Macintosh or Windows PCs.

Marty Schmidt, President, Solution Matrix Ltd

About the author, Marty Schmidt
President, Solution Matrix Ltd.

Order Online and Download Today!

All orders process through PayPal, providing you with complete PayPal security, privacy, and buyer protection. Click Checkout on the Shopping Cart to pay by MasterCard, Visa, American Express, Discover, or PayPal account. You do not need a PayPal account to pay by credit or debit card. Receive your receipt from Solution Matrix Ltd and PayPal immediately upon ordering. Receive download instructions by email shortly afterwards.

Receive your receipt from Solution Matrix Ltd and PayPal immediately upon ordering. Receive product download instructions by email shortly afterwards.

Order Financial Modeling Pro Excel Ebook System
MS Excel-workbook and Example Excel Models   US $39
Add Financial Metrics Pro to Shopping Cart

Order Spreadsheet Solutions Package 710
  • Financial Metrics Pro Excel-based ebook, 4th Ed
  • Financial Modeling Pro Excel-based ebook, 4th Ed

Save 25%. Order Pkg 710, Download Today! US $64

Add Spreadsheet Solutions Package 710 to shopping cart

Order Case Builder Package 340
  • Business Case Templates 2017, Word, Excel, PowerPoint Pkg
  • Business Case Essentials, PDF ebook, 4th Ed
  • Financial Modeling Pro Excel-based ebook, 4th Ed

Save 25%. Order Pkg 340, Download Today! US 689

Add Case Builder Package 340 to shopping cart

Order the Master Case Builder Package 490
  • Business Case Essentials PDF ebook, 4th Ed
  • Business Case Guide PDF ebook, 3rd Ed
  • Business Case Templates 2017, Excel, Word, PowerPoint, PDF package
  • Financial Metrics Pro Excel-based ebook, 4th Ed
  • Financial Modeling Pro Excel-based ebook, 4th Ed

Save 25%. Order Pkg 490, Download Today! US $149

Add Master Case Builder Package 490 to shopping cart

© Solution Matrix Ltd 2004-2017

Find us on Facebook Google+Linkedin
Updated 2017-12-18

Financial Metrics Pro, Handbook, Tutorial Templates

Business Case Essentials ebook

Financial Metrics Pro, 4th Ed

4th Edition, ISBN 978­1929500079
Published bySolution Matrix Ltd 2017
Excel-based ebook handbook, templates  US$39

Add Financial Metrics Pro to Shopping Cart

Metrics Handbook, Tutorial, Templates—In One Excel Ebook

Financial Metrics Pro is a handbook, tutorial, and templates system that meets the needs of first-time analysts as well as those with vast backgrounds in finance and accounting. Learn how to analyze cash flow and financial statement data with the same metrics that analysts, investors, and financial experts rely on. Metrics Pro includes;

  • Complete coverage of cash flow metrics, including IRR, NPV, ROI, CAGR, Break Even, and Payback Period.
  • Comprehensive coverage of financial statement metrics (ratios), including Current Ratio, Inventory Turns, Return on Assets, and Earnings per Share.
  • Metrics explained in context with detailed financial statements.
  • A complete working Du Pont System analysis linked to the same statements.
  • Live working examples and templates for 160 important metrics.
  • New in 4th Edition: Analyst Workbench and Chairman’s View.

Continue reading “Financial Metrics Pro, Handbook, Tutorial Templates”

Business Case Essentials, Build a Compelling Business Case

Business Case Essentials ebook

Business Case Essentials

4th Edition ISBN 978­1929500031
by Marty Schmidt
Published by Solution Matrix Ltd 2016
PDF ebook, 110 pages  US $29

Add Business Case Essentials PDF ebook to shopping cart

The Most Frequently Cited Business Case Authority in Print

The concise, complete introduction to case building and business case analysis. Essentials is written for those who must learn quickly what belongs in a business case and why—those who must build a compelling case in the shortest possible time.

Since its First Edition in 1998,Business Case Essentials has helped professionals in all lines of business answer questions like these: Continue reading “Business Case Essentials, Build a Compelling Business Case”

Avoided Cost, Opportunity Cost. Do They Belong in Your Business Case?

Avoided costs, opportunity costs, and cost savings, can all play an important role in business planning, budgeting and decision support.

Avoided Costs? Opportunity Costs?

avoided cost is purpose of preventative maintenanceA routine oil change is a familiar example of cost avoidance. Small investments in preventative maintenance avoid the much larger cost of engine replacement later.

I spoke recently with a project manager whose project funding proposal had just failed.

The Project Management Office—and the company CFO in particular—turned thumbs down on the manager’s Stage-0 business case. Why? Where was the red flag? Avoided costs! Continue reading “Avoided Cost, Opportunity Cost. Do They Belong in Your Business Case?”

Expect Your Business Case Critic. Be Ready!

You can avoid potentially damaging criticism at your business case review if you take steps to prevent it. Expect your business case critic.

The Business Case Critic Comes With the Turf

Expect your business case critic

Expect your business case critic.

No matter when or how you prepare your business case, there will be a sinister, uninvited stranger in the room when you present it for review: the business case critic. You can’t bar this person from the meeting and  speaking to everyone present.

Know for certain the critic will be there, working against you. This person “comes with the turf,” whenever you project future business results. The critic’s name is The Credibility Question. Your critic is the moving force behind questions like these: Continue reading “Expect Your Business Case Critic. Be Ready!”

The Business Case is Not Optional. Be Prepared!

Business people everywhere are hearing something like this from management: The business case is not optional! 

Management Sends Messages  Like These

Business Case support is becoming mandatory

Business case  results include practical guidance for increasing gains, reducing costs, and reducing risk.

When do you know you need a business case? You know it when your management sends messages like these:

  • We can’t afford to fund every new project or development proposal anymore. We have to find a better way to prioritize proposals, decide which to continue, and which to drop.
  • Starting this year, any request for non-budgeted funds is non-starter without a strong cost/benefit analysis behind it.”
  • New government policy says we have to have to show financial justification before going forward with major capital projects.”

In brief, the business case is no longer optional in more and more places. Continue reading “The Business Case is Not Optional. Be Prepared!”

Where’s the Case for Building Your Business Case?

How long should a business case analysis take?
How much labor should go into it?
More to the point, is there a business case for building case?

Is the Business Case Worth the Time and Effort?

Where's the business case for building your business case?Business case results include cash flow projections and practical guidance for managing actions and investments.

A serious business case analysis may require serious project effort, especially when the subject of the case has major impacts in a complex business environment, and when the subject has not been analyzed before. Participants in our business case seminars report that professional labor requirements can easily range anywhere from several person days at the low end to many person weeks on the high end.

Those involved in doing the work and their managers naturally want to know if the project is worth the time and effort. They may ask: “Can the people who propose business case analysis practice what they preach and present the business case for building the business case?”

The answer is “Yes,” of course. The case for the case should stand on compelling logic and concrete
evidence. But do not expect a simple ROI figure or cash flow value for the business case itself. Instead, keep in mind the following points when thinking about the value of a business case project.

For many managers, the “Case for the Case” comes down to comparing (a) the cost of labor and other resources that go into case building with (b) the order of magnitude of funds that are either at risk or the size of the opportunity to be taken or missed when a decision to act or not act is made.

Reducing Risk has Value

Remember first the purpose of business case analysis: reducing risk for decision makers and planners. The value of the case depends on the value at risk in the action under analysis. Here, you can begin by assessing the cost of previous bad decisions or missed
opportunities.

  • Consider the cost of bad decisions which might have been avoided with good business case analysis: unexpected project costs, surprisingly large cost of ownership, law suits, bad loan decisions, product failures, missed time-to-market objectives, bad portfolio management decisions, and so on.In many settings, the cost of bad decisions is many dozens or many hundreds of times the cost of the business case project.
  • Consider also the value of opportunities that were missed because management did not have enough confidence to take action at the right time.

Good business case analysis will not lower the bad decision rate or missed opportunities rate to zero, but it should reduce them by a significant percentage. When the case includes a good risk and sensitivity analysis, the level of risk and uncertainty remaining is measured and known.

Reaching Objectives has Value

Try also to estimate the financial value of reaching business objectives addressed by the subject of the case. The business case deserves credit for some of that value, if it contributes to reaching the objective. For example:

  • If your company sells products in a highly competitive industry, where new product design is a constant need, the value of reaching time-to-market objectives or reaching production efficiency targets is huge.
  • If you are in financial services or another transaction-intensive business (reservations, online sales, customer service), then the value of staying online and delivering better service than your competition, is very large (compared to the cost of being offline).
  • If you belong to a government organization charged with delivering high quality service to a large population, then the value of completing your mission (to the population served) can be very large.

Saving Time and Effort has Value

To fully understand the value of the case building project, be sure to consider also the time and effort already going into decision support, accountability reporting, budgeting, and planning. This may very well be many reduced, significantly, if you establish a business case discipline in the organization, with methods and support that are structured and well communicated.

But, what is the Value of the Case itself?

Further questions about the value of the business case project, or about the “ROI” for the case itself could be answered after the analysis is performed. That value could then be taken as a change in expected value for results of the action under study (the subject of the case) from doing the analysis. (Expected value is a concept from applied statistics: the expected value of the action should improve because the probabilities of low value outcomes decrease and the probabilities of high value outcomes increase, thanks to the analysis).

I suspect, however, that most managers would not consider that kind of result as very practical guidance. You cannot take expected value to the bank. And, in any case, it comes too late to help decide whether or not to do the case.

As mentioned, the “Case for the Case” comes down to comparing (a) the cost of labor and other resources that go into case building with (b) the order of magnitude of funds that are either at risk or an opportunity to missed when a decision to act or not act is made. If the case building costs are no more than, say, 2-5% of the magnitude of funds involved, most agree that it’s “money well spent.”

The case for the case is more compelling and easier to understand when you show simply that the cost of the case is very small compared to:

  • The value at risk with the proposed action
  • The cost of bad decisions
  • The value of opportunities that could be missed
  • The value of reaching business objectives and the role the business case in
    getting there.

Time and labor saved by building a good business case, compared to business as usual planning, information gathering, and accountability reporting.

Take Action!

Learn and practice proven methods for building your cases at a Building the Business Case Seminar. Learn more about business case design from one of our books, the Business Case Guide, or the most frequently cited business case authority in print, Business Case Essentials.

By Marty Schmidt. Copyright © 2004-2017.
Published by Solution Matrix Limited.
Find us on  Linkedin   Google+   Facebook