Estimate Project Cost and Duration: Best Tools, Possible Challenges, and Influencers
The finishing point for any project is to deliver set tasks and requirements on time, accurately following the budget. It's essential for the project manager to choose the right tools of measurement the cost and duration of the project. The issue is that only an experienced PM can be knowledgeable enough regarding the expectations, estimated terms and possible expenses. For new starters, it can be challengeable to set an accurate deadline for the project and predict costs.
Depending on project's expectations, it is necessary to signify the best tools for measuring the costs and terms, highlight what factors will influence the project, such as labor, and possible risks. One of the important factors is human resources, for example, if a project manager hires only one person, the cost will be lower but duration is longer. So, it's vital to find the right proportion of expenses and timing.
The main challenges for accurate estimating are also dependent on psychological issues as well. For instance, people often exaggerate their expectations and can be too idealistic regarding possible results. The last thing is that during the process various variables or force-majeure situations may appear, so it is essential to use relevant instruments for obtaining a thorough estimate.
There are following methods of estimation you should consider:
This method is relevant to such projects where there is a lack of information. The main point of this method is to have a general view of the project. Also, PM can record the hours necessary to spend on tasks with possible expenses. This information will be also relevant for the future similar projects. The main advantage of this method is that it is the fastest technique, however, less accurate in comparison with other methods.
This method is based on a public information relevant to the project. The major point of this method is the statistical connection among variables and historical data. This method is quite accurate.
This method is the most accurate, but less fast in the process. Also, this method can be used only if there is enough data about the project. In comparison with the previous methods, this one is the most thorough and reliable but has a higher cost and time-consuming.
Before completing the project, an estimate of its cost and duration is essential for a PM. This information will help to avoid possible risks and predict challenges that may appear. For a better understanding of the project and good results, a PM can use special tools or methods for estimation. This will also help counting major factors that influence the finishing result and consequently, will help to fulfill all the tasks on-time and on-budget.
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