Passing the #PMP Exam: Inputs and Outputs—Quality Knowledge Area



 1. Introduction

In this next series of posts on memorizing the processes, we move on to the final step 6, which is memorizing the INPUTS & OUTPUTS associated with each of the 42 processes. In order to breakdown the memorization into more bite-size chunks, I am going to break down this topic into at least 9 posts, one for each knowledge area. (There may be some knowledge areas that require more than one post.)

 This post covers chapter 8 of the PMBOK® Guide, which covers the Cost Knowledge Area. This knowledge area contains 3 processes, one of which is in the Planning Process group, one of which is in the Executing Process Group, and the last of which is in the Monitoring & Controlling Process Group.

2. Review of processes in Quality Knowledge Area

As a review, here is a chart which gives a summary of the processes themselves, plus the tools & techniques used as part of that process.

Process
Number & Name
Process Description Tools & Techniques
8.1 Plan Quality Identifying quality requirements and/or standards for the project and product; documenting how project will demonstrate compliance. 1. Cost-benefit analysis

2. Cost of quality

3. Control charts

4. Benchmarking

5. Design of experiments

6. Statistical sampling

7. Flowcharting

8. Proprietary quality management methodologies

9. Additional quality planning tools

 

8.1 Perform Quality Assurance Auditing quality requirements and results from quality control measurements to ensure appropriate quality standards are used. 1. Plan Quality and Perform Quality Control tools and techniques

2. Quality audits

3. Process analysis

 

8.3 Perform Quality Control Monitors and records results of quality activities to assess performance and recommend necessary changes. 1. Cause and effect diagrams

2. Control charts

3. Flowcharting

4. Histogram

5. Pareto chart

6. Run chart

7. Scatter diagram

8. Statistical sampling

9. Inspection

10. Approved change requests review

3. Definition of inputs, outputs

The inputs for a given process are the documents or results of other processes that are used in order to do the process. The results of going through the process are the outputs. These outputs are then used as inputs for some other process.

4. Generic inputs

Before we start, there are two “generic” inputs that are used in many, many processes. The term “generic” inputs is not to be found in the PMBOK® guide; that’s just my term I made up in our study group to clue people in to the fact that they are included as an input in more processes than you could probably name off the top of your head.

A. ENVIRONMENTAL ENTERPRISE FACTORS (EEF)

This is the “company culture”, or factors that are external to the project but which influence the project’s success. These can include the company databases and, in particular, the project management software used by the company.

B. OPERATIONAL PROCESS ASSETS (OPA)

Written procedures, policies, and guidelines that are used by the company to guide all operations, including projects. Lessons learned would be an important part of OPA.

Think of the operational process assets as the “hard copy” (written procedures), and the environmental enterprise factors as the “soft copy” (software and the company culture or “unwritten rules” that govern how work is done).

NOTE: Tools & Techniques will be listed for the purpose of completeness and for reference, but their detailed description will be omitted, because it is contained in the blog posts specifically covering Tools & Techniques for that knowledge area.

8.1 PLAN QUALITY

To remember the inputs for this process, remember that the purpose of this 8.1 Plan Quality process is to identify the quality requirements and standards to be used for the project and to document how that quality will be implemented.

INPUTS

8.1.1 Scope baseline

Remember the scope baseline consists of three components derived as outputs of the 5.3 Create WBS process: the scope statement (project description, major project deliverables, and acceptance criteria), the WBS (identifies detailed deliverables), and the WBS dictionary (gives technical information about WBS work packages).

8.1.2 Stakeholder register

Output of 10.1 Identify Stakeholders process. Lists those stakeholders that are concerned with quality.

8.1.3 Cost performance baseline

Output of 7.2 Determine Budget process. Shows basis for measuring cost performance.

8.1.4 Schedule baseline

Output of 6.5 Develop Schedule process. Shows basis for measuring schedule performance.

8.1.5 Risk register

Output of 11.2 Identify Risks process. Shows threats and opportunities that may impact quality.

8.1.6 Enterprise environmental factors

Governmental regulations and internal work conditions that may effect quality.

8.1.7 Organizational process assets

Organizational quality policies, company quality policy (intended direction with regard to quality), Lessons learned from previous projects.

TOOLS & TECHNIQUES (for details, see Tools & Techniques QUALITY post)

8.1.1 Cost-benefit analysis

8.1.2 Cost of quality

8.1.3 Control charts

8.1.4 Benchmarking

8.1.5 Design of experiments

8.1.6 Statistical sampling

8.1.7 Flowcharting

8.1.8 Proprietary quality management methodologies

8.1.9 Additional quality planning tools

OUTPUTS

8.1.1 Quality management plan

A component of the overall project management plan which shows how the quality policy mentioned as an input (8.1.7 OPA) is to be impomented.

8.1.2 Quality metrics

An attribute of the project or quality and how the quality control process will measure it. This should be something that be measured with a certain tolerance. Examples: on-time performance, budget performance defect frequency, failure rate.

8.1.3 Quality checklists

Component-specific checklist used to verify that required steps have been performed. This is done to ensure consistency in frequently performed tasks.

8.1.4 Process improvement plan

  • Process boundaries (their purpose, start and end, inputs/outputs, data required, stakeholders involved)
  • Process configuration (graphical depiction of processes used to facilitate analysis)
  • Process metrics (with control limits)
  • Targets for performance improvement

8.1.5 Project document updates

Updates may be made to the stakeholder register for those stakeholders involved with quality, and the responsibility assignment matrix for personnel related to or actually performing tasks related to quality.

8.2 PERFORM QUALITY ASSURANCE

It will be easier to remember Inputs & Outputs for this process 8.2 Perform Quality Assurance if you remember the purpose of the process, which is to audit quality requirements and results from quality control measurement to ensure the organizational is following the proper quality standards.

INPUTS

8.2.1 Project management plan

The quality management plan is a component of the project management plan, and is an output of the 8.1 Plan Quality process. Another component of the project management plan that is used in this process is the process improvement plan.

8.2.2 Quality metrics

An output of the 8.1 Plan Quality process. These are the attributes that are used to measure quality.

8.2.3 Work performance information

The status of the schedule, costs incurred, and the status of deliverables are all inputs to this process.

8.2.4 Quality control measurements

These are the outputs of the following 8.3 Perform Quality Control process.

TOOLS & TECHNIQUES (see Tools & Techniques QUALITY post for details)

8.2.1 Plan Quality and Perform Quality Control tools & techniques

8.2.2 Quality audits

8.2.3 Process analysis

OUTPUTS

8.2.1 Organizational process assets updates

Quality standards may be updated.

8.2.2 Change requests

If one of the results of the audits in this process is that quality processes need to be improved, change requests may be created and used as an input to the 4.5 Perform Integrated Change Control process. It may be that an audit of quality processes show that there are defects in the deliverables, in which case change requests may be made for corrective action or to repair the deliverables. Change requests could also be made to prevent defects in the deliverables.

8.2.3 Project management plan updates

The quality management plan, schedule and/or cost management plan may need to be updated as a result of the quality audits.

8.2.4 Project document updates

Quality audit reports, and documentation of the processes may need to be updated.

8.3 PERFORM QUALITY CONTROL

It may be easier to remember the inputs and outputs of this 8.3 Perform Quality Control process if you remember the purpose of the process, which is to record the results of quality control activities and to recommend any changes if necessary. Quality control activities detect if there are quality problems, and if so, they identify the causes of those problems.

INPUTS

8.3.1 Project management plan

The quality management plan is an output of 8.1 Plan Quality. It contains a description of how quality control will be performed within the project.

.

8.3.2 Quality metrics

An output of 8.1 Plan Quality. These are the attributes that are used to measure quality.

8.3.3. Quality checklists

Another output of 8.1 Plan Quality. These are component-specific checklists used to verify that required steps of processes have been performed. This is done to ensure consistency in frequently performed tasks.

8.3.4 Work performance measurements

These metrics include PV (planned value) vs. EV (earned value), and EV (earned value) vs. AC (actual costs). These evaluate the actual progress on the project as compared to the planned progress.

8.3.5 Approved change requests

These are the outputs of the 4.5 Perform Integrated Change Control process. These could be defect repairs, revised work processes, and/or revised schedules. The implementation of these approved changes needs to be verified.

8.3.6 Deliverables

The output of 4.3 Direct and Manage Project Execution.

8.3.7 Organizational process assets

Quality standards will influence this process, as well as any changes to work processes (mentioned in output 8.3.5 Approved change requests).

TOOLS & TECHNIQUES (see Tools & Techniques QUALITY post for details)

8.3.1. Cause and effect diagrams

8.3.2. Control charts

8.3.3. Flowcharting

8.3.4. Histogram

8.3.5. Pareto chart

8.3.6. Run chart

8.3.7. Scatter diagram

8.3.8. Statistical sampling

8.3.9. Inspection

8.3.10. Approved change requests review

OUTPUTS

8.3.1 Quality control measurements

These are the results of the quality control measurements.

8.3.2 Validated changes

Any items which are repaired as a result of this process will be inspected, and accepted or rejected as being acceptable.

8.3.3 Validated deliverables

These are deliverables whose quality has been validated as for correctness as to the quality control standards. These validated deliverables are then sent to the customer for their acceptance as part of the 5.4 Verify Scope process.

8.3.4 Organizational process assets updates

Quality checklists may be updated, as well as the lessons learned if there are any corrective actions taken or other quality control-related improvements.

8.3.5 Change request

If there are corrective actions, preventive actions or defect repairs required, then change requests are initiated and become an input to the 4.5 Perform Integrated Change Control process.

8.3.6 Project management plan updates

The quality management plan and/or process improvement plan may need to be updated.

8.3.7 Project document updates

Quality standards may need to be updated as a result of this process.

The next post will cover the inputs and outputs of the Human Resources Knowledge Area.

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: