The University of Newcastle
School of Design, Communication and Information Technology
INFT6304 – Project Planning & Management
Group Assignment 1
Worth: 25% of Course Mark
Due: 10:00pm, 27th June 2017
This first assignment is intended to get you communicating and to help you understand the strengths and weaknesses of you as a whole. You should exchange contact details and use social media to establish a way of contacting every member of your group. Make sure that you make an introduction to your fellow students, appoint a group coordinator, allocate a time for regular meetings and assign the work to individual members.
The following assignment is to be done cooperatively by your group and submitted as a single PDF file to the Blackboard Assessment Folder = Assignment01 Submit. You will be awarded a group mark for this assignment that will be moderated by your own contribution to provide your individual mark for the assignment. The group must submit a Group Contribution Report at the end of this assignment, showing the percentage contribution of each member.
Submission: Each group is to submit a single PDF file containing text and any other material pasted in as images. This means that any Excel spreadsheets, MS Project tables and an Assessment Item cover sheet should be combined into ONE single file in your word processor then converted to PDF. DO NOT submit one copy for each member of the group, but one for the group as a whole. The PDF file should be named INFT6304_Assignment01_groupname, where “groupname” is the group name you have chosen. Only one PDF document is permitted in the submission and this document should contain answers to all questions unless if the sub-questions ask for different types of submission (e.g. MS Project and Excel files, etc.)
Your submission will be checked for possible plagiarism and a similarity score will be available to you. DO NOT copy the work of other people, or make use of ANY other sources without declaring these in your assignment. Note that failure to follow the submission guideline will attract a heavy penalty on your assignment mark.
1. [25 Marks]
In your team you should conduct an assessment of the following:
a) What are your own individual skills?
b) What do you each want to get out of this course?
c) What are the complementary skills in your group?
e) How are you going to work effectively as a team – explain any mechanisms or team standards that will you employ to ensure the team works effectively?
Instructions: Use the spreadsheet in the Assignment 01 folder (available in .xls formats) to identify the group member's contact details and how the group will disseminate information, store and track documents. In addition, the skills of each member towards the team skill set should be clearly identified.
A separate section should provide a brief report (not more than 4 pages) identifying the aspirations of each member in terms of outcomes from the course and discuss how these aspirations and skills are complementary or mismatched to the other group members. Include a paragraph for each member.
Question 2. [15 Marks]
Find details of two successful and two unsuccessful projects and briefly review them as indicated in the instructions below. Try to ensure they are relatively recent, certainly nothing before 2011.
Why does your team feel they were successful or unsuccessful? Look at the PMBOK areas of project management, at sites such as: https://www.project-managementprepcast.com/pmbok-knowledge-areas-and-pmi-process-groups
Using reference to the PMBOK knowledge areas, identify the areas of strength of the successful projects and the areas of weakness in the unsuccessful projects.
Instructions: Use web search engines to conduct a search for recent news items concerning projects. Produce a report that identifies four projects (2 successful and 2 unsuccessful). The report for each project should be approximately one half page to one page for each project. For each project indicate the purpose and level of success or failure. In your report for each project discuss the reasons you believe the project has been successful or unsuccessful. Limit the answers to this question to 4 pages maximum. Penalty applies if page limitation is exceeded.
3. [25 Marks]
You work for the MakeBelieve company, which expects to earn at least 20 per cent on its investments. You have to choose between two similar projects. Below is the cash flow information for each project. Your analysts predict that the inflation rate will be a stable 3 percent over the next seven years. Which of the two projects would you fund if the decision is based only on financial information? Why? (Hint: to answers this question, you should compute the NPV, ROI & PayBack analysis for each project)
Project Omega Project Alpha
year Inflow Outflow Netflow year Inflow Outflow Netflow
Y0 0 $220 000 –220 000 Y0 0 $300 000 –300 000
Y1 0 150 000 –150 000 Y1 $40 000 100 000 –60 000
Y2 $100 000 0 100 000 Y2 180 000 0 180 000
Y3 200 000 30 000 170 000 Y3 250 000 50 000 200 000
Y4 215 000 0 215 000 Y4 200 000 0 200 000
Y5 205 000 30 000 175 000 Y5 200 000 50 000 150 000
Y6 195 000 0 195 000 Y6 110 000 0 110 000
Y7 120 000 30 000 90 000 Y7 120 000 30 000 90 000
Instructions: Use a spreadsheet to answer this question and then paste the completed spreadsheet into your final document.
4. [20 Marks]
The Custom Bike Company has set up a weighted scoring matrix for evaluation of potential projects. Below are five projects under consideration.
a. Using the scoring matrix below, which project would you rate highest? Lowest?
b. If the weight for “Strong Sponsor” is changed from 2.0 to 5.0, will the project selection change? What are the three highest weighted project scores with this new weight?
c. Why is it important that the weights mirror critical strategic factors?
Question 5. [15 Marks]
NASA has a contract from Australia Government to produce 10 advanced satellites to support worldwide connectivity and telephony system for remote locations in Australia. NASA will develop and produce the ten units and it has estimated that the R&D costs (one time cost) will be $15,000,000. Material costs are expected to be $500,000 per satellite. They have estimated the design and production of the first satellite will require 100,000 labour hours and an 80 per cent learning curve is expected. Skilled labour cost is $300 per hour. Desired profit for all projects is 25 per cent of total costs.
Look at Table A5.1 & A5.2 from your textbook for the learning curves unit values. Show your calculations for all solutions (if necessary indicate any assumptions or justifications required for your answers)
a. How many labour hours should the tenth satellite require? [2 Marks]
b. How many labour hours for the whole project of tenth satellites? [3 Marks]
c. What price should NASA ask for the project to cover all costs and profit? Why? (5 Marks)
d. Near the end of the project UK Government has requested a cost estimate for four satellites identical to those NASA has already produced. What price will NASA quote them? Justify the price. (5 Marks)