Agile PM Process Grid-2.12 Accounting Control

In John Stenbeck’s book “PMI-ACP and Certified Scrum Professional Exam Prep and Desk Reference”, he creates an “agile project management process grid” which describes 87 processes used in agile project management.   These processes are divided into five process groups (Initiate, Plan, Iterate, Control, and Close), which are analogous to the five process groups in traditional project management, and seven knowledge areas which can be mapped, more or less, onto the ten knowledge areas in traditional project management.

This post covers Accounting Control, one of two parts of process 2.12 (the other one is Contract Control).

Accounting control is measuring performance against a cost baseline, which is created in the following steps:

  1. Create a release plan
  2. Forecast cost per iteration
  3. Establish a cost baseline

However, at the end of each iteration, just like the grooming of the product backlog, the cost baseline should also be reviewed before each iteration and re-calculated based on any changes made to the product backlog (which may effect step 2 above) or the release plan (which may effect step 1 above).

If an earlier cost estimate has been decided to be mistaken, then the team needs to alert the Product Owner or customer/proxy to discuss the implications so that proper decisions can be made.   Any changes must be negotiated with and approved by the customer/proxy.

For most organizations, doing accounting control at the release level is not enough; it must be done at the story level in order to get control of the cost baseline.

The other type of control that must be maintained is that of Contract Control, which is the subject of the next post.




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