6th Edition PMBOK® Guide–Process 4.5 Monitor and Control Project Work: Tools & Techniques

The tools and techniques used for monitoring and controlling the project work are pretty general:   expert judgment, decision making, and meetings.   These are just generically described below.  But there is one set of tools that is very specific and those are data analysis techniques.   These will be described in more detail.

4.5.2 Monitor and Control Project Work:  Tools & Techniques Expert Judgment

This is judgment provided by individuals who have expertise in the data analysis techniques that are described in the next paragraph. Data Analysis Techniques

These techniques that can be used include the following:


First of all, there are the techniques that are used to detect whether there is a variation or not.

Earned value analysis–provides an integrated perspective on scope, schedule, and cost performance.

Variance analysis–reviews the differences between planned and actual performance.

Trend analysis–used to forecast future performance based on past results.

2. Diagnosis

Once a variation is detected, then you diagnosis the source of the variation.

Root cause analysis–identifies the main reasons for a problem that is causing a variation.

3.Corrective and/or Preventive Actions

Once the root cause of a problem that is causing a variation is identified, the various possibilities for a solution are investigated and the best solution is chosen to correct the problem.

Alternatives analysis–used to select the combination of corrective actions and/or preventive actions to implement

Cost-benefit analysis–helps determine the best corrective action in terms of cost in case of project deviations.

These techniques are designed to generate a change request which, when implemented, will solve the problems identified.  Decision Making

If there are several alternatives suggested to solving a particular problem, then the data analysis techniques listed above of alternatives analysis and cost-benefit analysis are used to help the project team decide on the best solution.   Decision-making techniques can include voting and the outcome can be based on unanimity, majority, or plurality (the greatest number of votes gathered even if not a majority).  Meetings

Meetings are tools where project team members gather to use the data analysis techniques and expert judgment to make a decision regarding the best course of action to take in order to solve problems discovered during the monitoring of the project.

The outputs of this process are discussed in the next post…


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