GAO Reports of Interest (Dec 2011)

IT Dashboard: Accuracy Has Improved, and Additional Efforts Are Under Way to Better Inform Decision Making
GAO-12-210, November 7, Link
Tags: Information Technology

Managing for Results: Opportunities for Congress to Address Government Performance Issues
GAO-12-215R, December 9, Link
Tags: Government Operations

Commercial Spectrum: Plans and Actions to Meet Future Needs, Including Continued Use of Auctions
GAO-12-118, November 23, Link
Tags: Telecommunications

Postsecondary Education: Student Outcomes Vary at For-Profit, Nonprofit, and Public Schools
GAO-12-143, December 6, Link
Tags: Education

Coast Guard: Security Risk Model Meets DHS Criteria, but More Training Could Enhance Its Use for Managing Programs and Operations
GAO-12-14, November 17, Link
Tags: Homeland Security

Homeland Defense and Weapons of Mass Destruction: Additional Steps Could Enhance the Effectiveness of the National Guard’s Life-Saving Response Forces
GAO-12-114, December 6, Link
Tags: Homeland Security; National Defense

National Capital Region: 2010 Strategic Plan is Generally Consistent with Characteristics of Effective Strategies
GAO-12-276T, December 6, Link
Tags: Economic Development; Government Operations; Homeland Security

Nuclear Nonproliferation: Action Needed to Address NNSA’s Program Management and Coordination Challenges
GAO-12-71, December 14, Link
Tags: Energy

International Space Station: Approaches for Ensuring Utilization through 2020 Are Reasonable but Should Be Revisited as NASA Gains More Knowledge of On-Orbit Performance
GAO-12-162, December 15, Link
Tags: Space

Transportation Security Infrastructure Modernization May Enhance DHS Screening Capabilities, but It Is Too Early to Assess Results
GAO-12-192R, December 8, Link
Tags: Homeland Security; Transportation

Homelessness: To Improve Data and Programs, Agencies Have Taken Steps to Develop a Common Vocabulary
GAO-12-302T, December 15, Link
Tags: Housing

Project Management Body of Knowledge (PMBOK) Notes – Introduction (Chapter 1)

Project Management Body of Knowledge (PMBOK) Guide 4th Edition
Chapter 1 – Introduction

Core Definitions

  • Project: A temporary endeavor undertaken to create a unique product, service, or result. Projects, within programs or portfolios, are a means of achieving organizational goals and objectives, often in the context of a strategic plan.
  • Project Management: The application of knowledge, skills, tools, and techniques to project activities to meet project requirements.
  • Project Management Office (PMO): An organizational body or entity assigned various responsibilities related to the centralized and coordinated management of those projects under its domain. The responsibilities of a PMO can range from providing project management support functions to actually being responsible for the direct management of a project.
  • Program: A group of related projects managed in a coordinated way to obtain benefits and control not available from managing them individually. Projects within a program are related through the common outcome or collective capability.
  • Program Management: The centralized coordinated management of a program to achieve the program’s strategic objectives and benefits. Program management focuses on project interdependencies and helps determine the optimal approach for managing them.
  • Portfolio: A collection of projects or programs and other work that are grouped together to facilitate effective management of that work to meet strategic business objectives.
  • Portfolio Management: The centralized management of one or more portfolios, which includes identifying, prioritizing, authorizing, managing, and controlling projects, programs, and other related work, to achieve specific strategic business objectives.
  • Operations: Permanent endeavors that produce repetitive outputs, with resources assigned to do basically the same set of tasks according to the standards institutionalized in a product life cycle.
  • Enterprise Environmental Factors: Both internal and external environmental factors that surround or influence a project’s success, to include, but not limited to: organizational culture, government/industry standards, infrastructure, existing human resources, personnel administration, marketplace conditions, stakeholder risk tolerances, political climate, and PM information systems.

General Notes

  • (1.2) Projects can have social, economic, and environmental impacts that far outlast the projects themselves.
  • (1.5) Projects require project management while operations require business process management (BPM) or operations management.
  • (1.6) Effective project management requires that the project manager (PM) possesses the following characteristics:
    • Knowledge: What the PM knows about project management
    • Performance: What the PM can do when applying project management knowledge
    • Personal: Behavior, attitude, leadership, balance and other core characteristics of the PM
  • (1.8) Enterprise environmental factors are considered inputs to most planning processes.