RECOVERY

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If you have an opportunity to renegotiate, use the following outline or one

of your own. The point is to use a control mechanism. See Attachment 17.

Scope of the Document

Applicable Documents

Requirements

Item Definition

Performance Characteristics

• The performance requirements related to manning, operating, maintaining,

and logistically supporting the prime item to the extent these

requirements define or constrain design of the prime item and include

response time, throughput rates, and exclusion times

Physical Characteristics

• The design constraints and standards necessary to assure compatibility

of prime item components

Interfaces between the principal item being specified and other items with

which it must be compatible

The major components of the principal item and the primary interfaces

between such major components

Qualification Requirements (for software) or Quality Assurance Provisions

(for hardware)

If you do not have an opportunity to renegotiate (this is the norm), you will

need to replan your program. Replanning will include attempting to achieve a

balance between the three items scope, schedule, and budget. The issue will be

that scope exceeds schedule or budget or both. How do you do that?

First, establish any of these variables as fixed; the other two can be the variables

to be renegotiated. If schedule is king, the scope can be reduced or funding

increased. If the budget is absolute, scope can be reduced or time expanded.

A primary rule of thumb is that the longer a program runs, the more it will

cost. On a hardware program, you will get more return from compressing the

existing schedule than from trying to reduce labor. On a software program,

compressing the schedule without a concomitant reduction in scope will likely

increase defects and, consequently, cost. Look for operations that will increase

the efficiency of the operation and thus reduce the time it takes to perform the

operation. There are many ways to accomplish this, but any of them could

have a legal impact on the contract (for instance, working unpaid overtime).

Use the problem-solving processes discussed in Chapter 6 of this book and

select the options that are right for you, your team, and your contract.

Don’t overlook minimizing labor, but make it a lower priority than optimizing

the schedule.

2e (NO) The Specification was not properly monitored.

If the requirement is valid and monitoring responsibility has been assigned

but has gone out of control without your knowledge, the fault lies in one place

and one place alone, with the monitor. If monitoring responsibility was not

assigned, it’s your fault.

You must insist on a Requirements Traceability Matrix (RTM) and an appropriately

assigned monitor.

RECOVERY

Start back with the Specification and develop a Requirements Traceability

Matrix (see Attachment 7) similar to Table 4-6 below. Add a column for the

monitor’s name.

Cover every requirement, assign monitoring responsibility for every requirement,

and establish a schedule for frequent reporting from the monitor to the

project leadership.

T a b l e 4 - 6 — R e q u i r e m e n t s T r a c e a b i l i t y M a t r i x ( R T M )

Unit System

SOW/ WBS S/C SOW/ Test Test

Spec Para Requirement Number Spec Para Number Para Monitor

SOW

4.3.1 Security 06-03-02 N/A T-0304 4.4.1 Smith

Spec

3.2.1 System weight 02-04-03 3.4.6 T-0045 3.4.1 Jones

shall be less

than 10,000

pounds

2f (NO) The Specification is not being properly performed.

The Specification is not being properly performed when the in-process reviews

or the design reviews were not passed properly or were not accepted by

the customer or when the product was not fabricated or produced in accordance

with the design or was not accepted by the customer.

The problem must be that the requirements are not being satisfied. You had

to state that the Specification was properly defined (1a), within your capabilities

(1b), properly interpreted (1c), and properly negotiated (1d) in order to get

TEAMFLY

here in the first place. Therefore, you must proceed with the understanding that

the requirements are not being satisfied.

RECOVERY

Return to the Specification and cross-check the Specification with the Requirements

Traceability Matrix (RTM). Determine which of the requirements

are not being met using Table 4-7 as a start.

T a b l e 4 - 7 — P r o b l e m C r o s s - R e f e r e n c e T a b l e

Does the problem lie in: Go to Cause Description

Architecture 51a, 51b, 51c, 51d, 51e, 51f

Design 52a, 52b, 52c, 52d, 52e, 52f,

52g

Design Reviews 53a, 53b

In-Process Reviews 54a, 54b

Prototypes 55a, 55b, 55c, 55d

Subcontracts 56a, 56b

Purchase Orders 57a, 57b

Production/Manufacturing 58a, 58b, 58c, 58d

Unit Test 59a, 59b, 59c, 59d

System Test 60a, 60b, 60c, 60d, 60e, 60f

If the first time you know the Specification is not being properly performed

is when it misses or fails a major milestone, you are not on top of your project.

Every requirement in the RTM should have a monitor, and every major milestone

should have inch stones leading up to it.

As soon as you recover from the immediate problem, go back and establish

the requisite monitor for each requirement still to be performed and establish

inch stones for each milestone yet to be accomplished.

3 POLICIES, PLANS, AND PROCESSES

3a (NO) There is not a clear trail between standard policies and

plans and the Project/Program Plan and Technical Plan.

The Project/Program Plan and Technical Plan must link to standard policies

and plans through two avenues. One of those is through enterprise policies

and processes; the other is through the requirements document (contract). The

requirements document (contract) references those standards through the

Statement Of Work (SOW) and the Specification.

You should have an STM similar to Table 4-8 shown below. The STM is

explained in Attachment 13.

RECOVERY

Create an STM similar to Table 4-8 with your data inserted.

T a b l e 4 - 8 — S t a n d a r d s T r a c e a b i l i t y M a t r i x

STANDARDS APPEARANCE

Industry Customer Enterprise Project Plan Technical Plan

ISO-9001 ISO-9001 Enterprise Quality Para 4.6.8 Part I, Para

Policy 09350 4.5.6

MIL-STD-100 Enterprise Engineering N/A Part II, Para

Standards 06050 1.2.3

Table 4-8 is a multipurpose table in that the industry, customer, and enterprise

standards documents are all included in one chart. You can use this technique,

or you can separate the documents into three separate charts. The advantage

of using three charts is that industry and enterprise charts will probably

remain constant for most, if not all, projects, and only the customer chart needs

to be researched. The advantage of using the multipurpose chart is that the

relationships between all elements—and there will be many—are clearly presented.

You must start with the requirement and not the appearance. Starting with

the appearance will give you a false sense of accomplishment.

Refer to Attachment 13 for more detail.

3b (NO) There is not a clear trail between customer policies and

plans and the Project/Program Plan and Technical Plan.

The Project/Program Plan and Technical Plan must link to customer policies

and plans through two avenues. One of those is through enterprise policies

and processes; the other is through the requirements document (contract). The

requirements document (contract) references those standards through the

Statement Of Work (SOW) and the Specification.

You should have an STM similar to Table 4-9. The STM is explained in

Attachment 13.

RECOVERY

Create an STM similar to Table 4-9 with your data inserted.

T a b l e 4 - 9 — S t a n d a r d s T r a c e a b i l i t y M a t r i x

STANDARDS APPEARANCE

Industry Customer Enterprise Project Plan Technical Plan

ISO-9001 ISO-9001 Enterprise Quality Para 4.6.8 Part I, Para

Policy 09350 4.5.6

MIL-STD-100 Enterprise Engineering N/A Part II, Para

Standards 06050 1.2.3

Table 4-9 is a multipurpose table in that the industry, customer, and enterprise

standards documents are all included in one chart. You can use this technique

or separate them into three separate charts. The advantage of using three

charts is that industry and enterprise charts will probably remain constant for

most, if not all, projects and only the customer chart needs to be researched.

The advantage of using the multipurpose chart is that the relationships between

all elements, and there will be many, are clearly presented.

You must start with the requirement and not the appearance. Starting with

the appearance will give you a false sense of accomplishment.

Refer to Attachment 13 for more detail.

3c (NO) There is no clear trail between enterprise policies and plans

and the Project/Program Plan and Technical Plan.

The Project/Program Plan and Technical Plan must link to enterprise policies

and plans through two avenues. One of those is through enterprise policies

and processes; the other is through the requirements document (contract). The

requirements document (contract) references those standards through the

Statement Of Work (SOW) and the Specification.

You should have an STM similar to Table 4-10. The STM is explained in

Attachment 13.

RECOVERY

Create an STM similar to Table 4-10 with your data inserted.

T a b l e 4 - 1 0 — S t a n d a r d s T r a c e a b i l i t y M a t r i x

STANDARDS APPEARANCE

Industry Customer Enterprise Project Plan Technical Plan

ISO-9001 ISO-9001 Enterprise Quality Para 4.6.8 Part I, Para

Policy 09350 4.5.6

MIL-STD-100 Enterprise Engineering N/A Part II, Para

Standards 06050 1.2.3

Table 4-10 is a multipurpose table in that the industry, customer, and enterprise

standards documents are all included in one chart. You can use this technique

or divide them into three separate charts. The advantage of using three

charts is that industry and enterprise charts will probably remain constant for

most, if not all, projects and only the customer chart needs to be researched.

The advantage of using the multipurpose chart is that the relationships between

all elements, and there will be many, are clearly presented.

Refer to Attachment 13 for more detail.

4 ORGANIZATION

4a (NO) The numbers of personnel assigned to each task are not

correct.

The numbers of personnel must be contributing to a problem or you probably

would not be looking at this particular issue at this time. It could be that

you simply reviewed the organization chart and found that there were more or

fewer people than called for by the organization chart and manpower table. A

big part of your job is to constantly optimize the organization.

You must constantly ask yourself: ‘‘Is the job getting done?’’ Then, follow up

with the questions: ‘‘Is the job getting done without working overtime?’’ and

‘‘Is the morale of the team high?’’ If the answer to all those questions is YES,

you’re probably in good shape. You must however also ask yourself: ‘‘Do I have

too many people?’’ The job could be getting done, you are not working overtime,

and morale is high, but you have too many people. Do you have too many

people or too few?

RECOVERY

If the manpower numbers do not match the organization chart, one of two

things is wrong: The number of people is wrong or the organization chart is

wrong. What a keen grasp of the obvious!

If you don’t have enough people, even if you are getting the job done, you

need to review the tasks and task distribution. If you are running under the

manpower projected, you could be saving money. Conversely, you could be

driving the people to the point where major mistakes will be made. You are the

best judge of the answer to that question. Don’t just let this situation ride.

Evaluate it carefully and be certain of your decision. How do you get more

people? That’s a question that will be unique to your organization. No matter

the final answer, you will need to perform a workload analysis and show that

you need more people. You may be able to simply request more people or go

out and hire more people or you may simply be shut off from increasing your

manpower. The answer depends on your organization and the organization and

task type (i.e., government versus commercial, fixed price contract versus cost

plus contract, not-for-profit, volunteer, etc.). Each will have a different answer.

More people will cost more money and, if you have P&L responsibility, it will

be a large part of your cost equation.

If you have too many people, it is likely that you are headed for an overrun.

If not, it possibly means that the people are not the same level as those that

were bid. If this is the case, the project manpower must be reevaluated. Don’t

limit your investigation to numbers alone. Refer to Cause Descriptions 4b (NO),

7a (NO), 7b (NO), and 7c (NO).

4b (NO) The mix of personnel to accomplish the task is not

appropriate.

The mix of personnel to accomplish the task is not appropriate if the job is

not getting done or the mix of personnel does not match the mix shown on the

organization chart. The first is much more important than the second.

If the mix of personnel is not appropriate, it means there is a disconnect

between what was bid and how the program is manned. It is possible that the

job is getting done just fine with an improper mix of personnel; however, if that

is the case, the staffing plan is incorrect, which means you probably bid incorrectly.

If the mix, on average, is lower than what was bid, you will probably save

some money. In this case, it makes sense to change the staffing mix. If the mix

is higher than what was bid, it will probably cost you money. In this case, you

need to change the real mix to what was bid. There is a fine line between mix

and numbers. For instance, you could have fewer people of higher levels who

are getting the job done, and the end result is the same dollars as were bid. The

opposite is true as well. The bottom line is to match the dollars being spent to

the task being done.

RECOVERY

The primary task is to get the job done on or ahead of time, within or under

budget, and with technical compliance.

When the task is kicked off, you may be in a personnel situation that is

different now from what it was at the time the program was bid. There are a

number of situations that can occur and that require different action.

Following are sets of budget and schedule situations and the particular action

required for each one:

On Budget/On Schedule. Stay the course!

On Budget/Ahead of Schedule. Build a reasonable schedule reserve for use

later on, particularly during integration and test.

Over Budget/On Schedule. Reassess the organization mix and personnel qualifications.

Can they be changed and still get the job done? Can you reduce the

staffing to get back on budget? Change mix or numbers of personnel.

Over Budget/Ahead of Schedule. Reduce the staffing on the project.

Over Budget/Behind Schedule. Problem. First, don’t let it get any worse. Reevaluate

the staffing mix. Can you get by with fewer people who are more efficient?

If you can’t fix this problem as soon as it occurs, it is the beginning of a

‘‘death spiral.’’ If all attempts fail, try to get the scope, schedule, or cost changed.

Reassess the organization mix and personnel qualifications. Is this a temporary

condition or reflective of the program in the long-term? If short-term, and

you have a cost type contract, increase personnel (with the customer’s concurrence).

If you have a fixed price type contract, consider replanning and/or

bringing on temporary personnel or change the mix to get you back on schedule.

If long-term, and you have a cost type contract, replan and increase person-

nel or increase schedule (with the customer’s concurrence). If you have a fixed

price type contract, replan.

Here we are talking about the organization mix which means personnel. Our

options are to leave alone, add, decrease, or change the mix. There are also

other options, such as ‘‘fast-tracking’’ and conducting parallel activities, that

may well need to be considered.

There is a price to pay for each change made. If your mix is different from

the organization chart, and if the job is getting done but the people are being

overworked, even if the job were on budget, you could change the mix so the

work balance is proper. Now, as Project Manager, you may like the short-term

results (on schedule, under budget) but the long-term ramifications may bite

you. Just when you need your people the most, at the end of the program, they

will be exhausted and you may lose everything you have gained and then some.

If your mix is different from the organization chart and the job is not getting

done regardless of whether or not the job is on budget, change the mix of

personnel to be the same as the organization chart.

Many times there are simply not enough people available in an organization

to go around. There are three ways to get around this problem. The first is the

most obvious—hire more people. This may or may not be the right answer. If

you hire more people, it will cost more money. Can you afford it and will

management allow it? Even though that may solve your problem, management

may take a dim view of hiring more people because, when your project ends,

the company is stuck with these additional people. Even if you are projectized

(meaning all necessary personnel are assigned directly to the project), employees

are hired by the enterprise and allocated to the program so they are company

employees (i.e., not program employees). There is an approach to management

that says: ‘‘If you hold down the number of people on a project, the people

already assigned to the project will rise to do the work required.’’ This may or

may not work. Sometimes it does work and the result on a fixed price contract

is more profit. However, if it continues for more than a short time, the usual

result is a loss of morale and employee turnover. The second way is to work

overtime (meaning paid overtime as opposed to the above technique of forced

and unpaid overtime). This is the right technique if you need to increase manpower

by less than about 30 percent (the actual amount depends on your accounting

procedures) or need to increase manpower for a short period of time.

Overtime costs only the direct time worked and, perhaps, a premium. It carries

higher loadings (based on a percentage system) but not additional loadings of

G&A (General and Administrative) and overhead. The third way is to increase

the efficiency of the people available. There are three ways to do this. One is to

‘‘swap out’’ one person for another. Sometimes, even swapping out for a higher-

paid person is more efficient than hiring another person, assuming the higherpaid

person is more efficient than the lower-paid person. Next, you can train,

and thus upgrade, the person whose efficiency you need to improve. That, of

course, assumes training will do it. Finally, you can outsource some of the effort

or use contract employees. These are all popular options. Use care here if you

have a union contract. You need to do the math as it applies to your program

to decide which of these techniques to use.

There is another factor that must be considered with regard to personnel and

organization if you use the matrix form of management and personnel allocation.

If you proposed enough personnel and time for those personnel in the

proposal and now find that there is not enough time being applied to your

program, it may be the fault of the matrix method rather than of the personnel.

What happens is that there is a loss of efficiency when changing from program

to program and even in transit from program to program. If you are lucky, you

may get 80 percent of the time bid by a functional manager for a person’s time.

Someone has to pay for the inefficiency of the changeovers and the transit time.

The result? The program pays for it! You might try to negotiate the ‘‘lost 20

percent’’ from the Functional Manager as a part of his overhead. Before you

laugh your head off, this has worked. It depends on the importance of the

project to the company and/or the foresight of the Functional Manager. Care

must be taken here because under some conditions (federal contracts, for instance)

this could be an unacceptable and even illegal practice.

Under Budget/On Schedule. Nice position to be in. So long as you are not

stressing your people, you could continue and build a budget reserve.

However, you should reassess the organization mix and personnel qualifications.

If you have a cost type contract, reduce personnel (with the customer’s

concurrence). If you have a fixed price type contract, consider building a schedule

by keeping the people and getting ahead of schedule or create a budget

reserve by reducing the personnel. Extreme care and caution need to be exercised

here. If you have complete budget control, this is a good move. However,

if you start to build a reserve, and management consumes that reserve as current

profit, you could be in trouble downstream if you have any problems. Once it

is declared as profit it is not available to you as ‘‘free’’ money.

Under Budget/Ahead of Schedule. Congratulations. This is great for a Project

Manager, but be sure you are not riding a wave that will crash soon. Project

your present staffing and schedule and ensure that there is not a ‘‘black hole’’

somewhere.

Under Budget/Behind Schedule. This is typically a staffing issue. That is, you

have not staffed up to get the job done. The first thing to do is to get back on

schedule, then worry about cost.

Additional Resources:

‘‘Program Management—Turning Many Projects into Few Priorities with

TOC.’’ This article was originally presented at the National Project Management

Institute Symposium (Philadelphia, October, 1999) by Francis S. ‘‘Frank’’

Patrick.

4c (NO) The personnel are not acting and reacting as a team.

In order to be a team, the individuals must act and react with regard to the

team’s goals. The group acts and reacts as a team when the responses to team

goals are greater than the responses to individual goals.

If the individuals are not acting and reacting as a team, it could be caused by

one or several reasons: First, there may be individuals in the group that decline

(refuse) to be a part of the team. Second, team training was not thorough or

was inappropriate. Third, there was no team training at all.

RECOVERY

If there are individuals in the group that decline (refuse) to be a part of the

team, it is likely an individual rather than a team problem. Refer to Cause

Description ‘‘7d (NO) Interpersonal conflicts do exist.’’ If the responsible person

is replaced, you may need to recap that part of the team training package

that has to do with interfaces and responsibilities of individuals. The balance

could change by changing individuals on the team.

If team training was not thorough or was inappropriate, the actions or reactions

may be subtle or profound. Recovery is a matter of degree and team training

needs to be changed by some amount. If the response is subtle, chances are

that the team training package can be changed slightly. In this case, identify the

shortfall and have the training coordinator rework that part of the package.

That change can then be given by you or by the training department, depending

on the size and nature of the change. If the change is profound, it is clear the

training department must revise and re-present the package. Re-presenting the

package will be subject to the same timing constraints as in the following paragraph.

If there was no training presented before the project was started, you are

confronted with a real problem. Now, the value of preproject training becomes

obvious. A training package must be developed or purchased and presented to

the group. These are the problems of those responsible for training. Your prob-

lem will be how to stop work long enough to have your people attend the

training course. Most team training courses are presented in one- to three-day

sessions. You may be able to divide the course into segments to be given after

hours, or you could have the course given in a long weekend or two weekends.

These options could be impacted by the work schedule already in progress (i.e.,

the people are already overworked) or union rules that may prohibit such action.

Finally, you could stop the project and conduct the training course. Before

you start laughing, consider just how bad the situation is. This could be the

most cost-effective approach. You must be the judge.

5 TEAMS, ALLIANCES, AND SUBCONTRACTS

5a (NO) The subcontracts were not properly defined.

The tasks of subcontractors, which includes team members and alliances,

are not properly defined unless they have a clear trail between the subcontract

Statement Of Work and the requirements document (contract) through the

Requirements Flow-down Matrix (RFM), and a clear trail between the subcontract

Specification and the requirements document (contract) Specification

through the Requirements Traceability Matrix (RTM).

RECOVERY

Begin with your customer’s requirement that defines your Statement Of

Work (SOW) and the Specification (Spec) for the product that you are to produce.

Decompose the SOW and the Spec using the Work Breakdown Structure

(WBS), the RTM, and the RFM. Establish a clear link between the requirement

and how and by whom it will be accomplished. The best way to accomplish this

task is to establish an RTM that reflects the requirement from your customer

through your organization. At that point, part of the requirement will be allocated

to one or more subcontractors. The best way to keep up with this trail is

by using a Subcontract Requirement Flow-down Matrix (SRFM). Require your

subcontractor(s) to provide a Subcontract Requirement Traceability Matrix

(SRTM) to complete the link through his processes.

If you do not have an RFM or SFRM, you can use Table 4-11 as a start.

Additional information can be found in Attachment 8.

If you do not have an RTM or SRTM, you can use Table 4-12 as a start.

Additional information can be found in Attachment 7.

TEAMFLY

T a b l e 4 - 1 1 — R e q u i r e m e n t s F l o w - D o w n M a t r i x ( R F M )

Company Design S/C Plan S/C A S/C B

Spec Para Reqt WBS Plan Para Para Para Para

1.3.2 02-03-01 5.3.2 5.3.2 1.3.2 1.3.2

1.3.3 02-03-02 5.3.3 5.3.3 1.3.3 N/A

1.3.4 02-03-03 5.3.4 5.3.4 1.3.4 1.3.4

QA Plan 04-01-01 8.2.6 8.2.6 4.3.6 4.3.6

CM Plan 05-01-01 9.3.1 9.3.1 5.6.2 5.6.2

T a b l e 4 - 1 2 — R e q u i r e m e n t s T r a c e a b i l i t y M a t r i x ( R T M )

Unit System

SOW/ WBS S/C SOW/ Test Test

Spec Para Requirement Number Spec Para Number Para Monitor

SOW

4.3.1 Security 06-03-02 N/A T-0304 4.4.1 Smith

Spec

3.2.1 System weight 02-04-03 3.4.6 T-0045 3.4.1 Jones

shall be less

than 10,000

pounds

Additional Resources:

US Army Field Manual (FM) 770-78

5b (NO) The subcontract tasks are not within the capabilities of each

team member, partner, or subcontractor.

The subcontract tasks are not within the capabilities of each team member,

partner, or subcontractor if each has not performed the same or a similar task

before. The method by which this decision is reached is to construct a matrix

with the tasks along the side and a place for project entries across the top. The

potential subcontractor then identifies the project where the same or a similar

task has been performed. Where there are no intersects of tasks and projects,

the subcontractor has no proven ability to perform this task. Hopefully, this

exercise is being performed before the subcontract is awarded. The answer here

is simple: Do not award this subcontract to this subcontractor.

RECOVERY

If the subcontract has already been awarded to a subcontractor who cannot

perform the task, you have two options. The first is to terminate the subcontractor

for cause and recompete the subcontract. The second is to attempt to assist

the subcontractor to recover. Once again, the initial steps are to create a matrix

and evaluate the subcontractor’s weaknesses. Create a matrix with the tasks

along the side and a place for project entries across the top. The subcontractor

then identifies the project where the same or a similar task has been performed.

Where there are no intersects of tasks and projects, the subcontractor has no

proven ability to perform this task. For each intersect that is not marked (identified

as having that ability) a recovery plan must be created.

If a subcontract is beyond the capabilities of your subcontractor, the selection

should not have been made in the first place. Please refer to Cause Description

2d (NO), above for more ideas of how to resolve this event.

It is not unusual to assume that a partner ‘‘knows what he is doing’’ and

doesn’t need a detailed Statement Of Work, etc., to do his job. . . . Wrong! That

may work for a few months but, I assure you, in the long run it is the wrong

answer. You should have a standard, and all-inclusive, program or process for

all subcontracts. That statement applies to team members and alliances as well

as the usual run of subcontractors. If you do not have such a standard, you can

use the format in Table 4-13 as a start.

To try to bring the shortfall within your subcontractor’s capabilities, the first

action must be to create a Risk Mitigation Plan and determine how the risk

(such as the shortfall shown for Task 6 in Table 4-13) can be neutralized.

To confirm your position, it is a good idea to perform the vendor selection

process, at least to the evaluation level, by filling in the Vendor Evaluation

Sheets for each discipline as described in Attachment 14 and shown in Figure

A14-1 there. You may need this confirmation later on.

If the Specification is truly not within your subcontractor’s capabilities, you

have two alternatives depending on whether the task is within the state of the

art:

If it is, you may be able to buy resolution by teaming or creating an alliance

T a b l e 4 - 1 3 — T a s k Q u a l i f i c a t i o n

Project A Project B Project C Project D Project E

Task 1 X

Task 2 X X

Task 3 X

Task 4 X

Task 5 X X

Task 6

or subcontracting with another company. Sometimes, simply hiring one or several

individuals with the requisite knowledge will solve the problem. Agreement

with the subcontractor will be necessary to determine whether the subcontractor

buys the ability or you do. Make sure funding follows function. The determining

factor usually is whether or not the task is reasonably separable from

the other tasks.

If it is not, you must immediately sit down with the subcontractor and discuss

the issue in earnest. Is there any recovery possible from this situation? Can

it be parsed and part of it salvaged without destroying the project? Can it be

redefined and accomplish the same ends?

Next, you must sit down with marketing (in the case of a teaming) or management

(in the case of an alliance) or both and lay out the situation. Teaming

and alliances are frequently made for political purposes, and you need to be

very careful before making any major changes. If there are political conditions

involved, it is advisable to get a release of responsibility from management for

the nonperformance of the subcontractor. This may be difficult and even political

suicide to initiate. Be careful and use your best judgment for your particular

situation

If you have a failure and know you have a failure with either no recourse or

an alternative that is not part of the Specification, you must notify your customer

at the earliest possible time. This action is absolutely required under

some contract conditions (federal contracts, for instance) and may or may not

be required under other circumstances, but it’s the ethical thing to do. It will

require sitting down with the customer, laying out the problem and the answers

that have been tried and that failed to work, and reviewing the alternatives that

could be used. All these steps must be undertaken as rapidly as possible.

5c (NO) The subcontracts were not properly negotiated.

Very simply, a poorly negotiated subcontract is one in which there is a misunderstanding

of the task by either party or in which a balance between the

scope of work to be accomplished, the amount of money to be paid, or the time

allowed to complete the task is lacking.

RECOVERY

Determine exactly what the problem is. Was the problem yours? That is, did

you incorrectly state the task to be accomplished, the schedule, or the budget?

Is the problem attributable to the subcontractor? That is, did he incorrectly

interpret the task, the schedule, or the budget?

Meet with the subcontractor.

Go through each paragraph of the subcontract that is or might be in

question.

Come to an understanding with the subcontractor as to exactly what the

baseline is.

Determine exactly who is at fault.

Come to an understanding with the subcontractor on how recovery can

be made. This includes:

• Schedule Recovery

• Financial Recovery

• Technical Recovery

Based on the answer to the question regarding fault, come to an understanding

of exactly how correction will be made.

If the fault is yours, negotiate what you must to get the program back on the

road again. Otherwise, you may be looking at a legal situation.

If the fault is with the subcontractor, instruct them as to what must be done

to get the program back on the road again in a Show Cause letter. Consider the

resulting proposal. If the subcontractor agrees, restructure the subcontract and

reinstitute the metrics to ensure proper monitoring. If the subcontractor does

not agree, you have two choices:

1. Restructure the subcontract until agreement can be achieved. This can

include subdividing the overall task, changing the numbers, adjusting the

schedule, changing the design, or many other things.

2. Terminate the subcontract for cause and either perform the work yourself

or search for another subcontractor.

Make every attempt to resolve the issues. I don’t advocate ‘‘caving in’’ to a

poorly performing subcontractor, but you must make a judgment that will be

the best solution for the project. Don’t let your ego get in the way. This is a

good time to call for advice.

If this issue turns political, as it sometimes can when teaming or alliances are

involved, make sure you protect yourself by documenting the facts surrounding

the situation. If possible, get relief from that part of the program so that you

will not be held responsible for the shortcomings of a politically selected, nonperforming

subcontractor. This is dangerous ground because you just might be

held responsible at that point anyway. This issue is sticky and will change with

the personalities involved.

Going to court is the solution of last resort. Remember, the project schedule

clock is still running!

5d (NO) The subcontracts are not properly monitored.

Simply stated, a subcontract is not properly monitored if an event, positive

or negative, occurs and you are not aware of its happening.

RECOVERY

Implement regular and frequent reviews at strategic points in the process to

ensure that performance is proper. Such reviews include:

Subcontract Progress Reviews—Subcontractor presents technical progress,

budget status, schedule status, deliverables status, and data status

Subcontractor Meetings—Special, single-subject meetings as required

Subcontractor Technical Interchange Meetings (TIMs)—Informal reviews

of technical subjects

Subcontractor Design Reviews—Subcontractor presents and defends the

design and its support in a formal environment

Subcontractor In-Process Reviews—Informal reviews between milestones

Subcontractor Pretest Meetings—Briefings to establish the basis for a test

Subcontractor Posttest Reviews—Review of test data and issuance and

formalization of action items

These reviews must be conducted at frequent and consistent intervals. The

lower in the hierarchy (viz. project is lower in the hierarchy than company, etc.)

the more frequent the review.

Within each of these meetings or reviews, measurements or metrics must be

established and monitored to determine if an event is in tolerance or out-oftolerance.

5e (NO) Team members, partners, and subcontractors are not

performing properly.

Team members, partners, and subcontractors are not performing properly

when monitored events are not being performed on schedule, are not within

budget, or are not technically competent. The methods you use in determining

this status is by monitoring established measurements or metrics within the

meetings and reviews discussed in Cause Description 5d (NO).

RECOVERY

Ensure that the metrics supplied and examined at these meetings and reviews

address the critical areas. If fiscal problems have arisen, reassess the fiscal metrics

being presented and select a set of metrics that give the needed visibility

into project progress. If schedule problems have arisen, reassess the scheduled

event or events that are directly and indirectly involved with this problem (i.e.,

predecessor and successor events). If technical problems have surfaced, it is

usually best to convene a Technical Interchange Meeting (TIM).

Monitored events are those events that are typical for a particular review.

Usually, Schedule Reviews, Budget Reviews, and Progress Reviews are elements

of a Project Review except when they are single-subject meetings. Within each

review there must be monitoring values and metrics to determine if the project

is performing in tolerance. Although projects vary infinitely in subject matter,

there are some values that must be monitored on all projects. Such meetings

are frequently called Plans, Progress, and Problems meetings. Such values are,

at a minimum:

6 MATERIALS

6a (NO) Purchase Orders were not properly written.

When a Purchase Order is not properly written, it can, and probably will,

affect the budget, the schedule, and the quality of the product.