Friday, October 17, 2008

Monitoring Data Management

Project Monitoring and Control (PMC) Specific Practice (SP) 1.4 states "Monitor the management of project data against the project plan." Our organization has chosen to implement the plan for managing project data by creating a Data Management Plan (DMP) for each project. The DMP lists each item and the method, its storage location, and the monitoring method along with other pertinent information. There are embedded checks and balances for placing items in the proper repository and they are distributed to the lowest level.

  1. PMC SP 1.4 specifies that a periodic review of the data management activities against their descriptions in the project plan. How often should this review occur?
  2. What are examples of Direct and Indirect Evidence for PMC SP 1.4 that can be used for developing the PMC PIID?

The purpose of PMC is to provide an understanding of the project’s progress so that appropriate corrective actions can be taken when the project’s performance deviates significantly from the plan. Since the DMP is one of the components of the project plan, it must be monitored, controlled, and managed on a regular basis in order to take appropriate corrective action. As PMC is normally the Project Manager's (PM's) responsibility, it is expected that the PM is regularly monitoring the DMP and its use, but this responsibility can be delegated.

As the items in the DMP are created and managed at different times throughout the project’s life cycle, specifying a fixed monitoring frequency for the entire plan may not provide a lot of value to the PM and the project. It may make more sense to monitor each item against the DMP on an individual basis. One method for implementing this type of monitoring would be to specify in the DMP the monitoring frequency for each item, the person responsible for monitoring each item, and the mechanism for documenting and communicating the monitoring results for each item. Providing this information in the DMP would then answer question 2 as well.

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