Browse Prior Art Database

Program / Project Cost and Schedule Estimator Disclosure Number: IPCOM000018780D
Original Publication Date: 2003-Aug-07
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2003-Aug-07
Document File: 3 page(s) / 95K

Publishing Venue



The invention provides the ability to effectively estimate project/program cost and schedule during the pre-concept or initial stages of the project/program.

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Program / Project Cost and Schedule Estimator

  A tool is disclosed that estimates the cost and schedule of projects or programs during the pre-concept phase. The tool brings enhanced fidelity and integrity to the process of estimating the development effort (cost and schedule) on IT projects at project startup. The tool, called 'The Complexity Point Model', is developed around three main projects imperatives: 1) cost, 2) schedule, and 3) technical scope. This parametric model uses complexity points as measures of technical scope to estimate project cost and schedule.

Sufficient details of a program/project are usually unknown during the pre-concept phase so as to allow current project estimation methods (based on Function Points, number of requirements, or lines of source code) and estimation tools (for example, COCOMO) to provide comprehensive estimates. However, the present model is scalable to projects of different sizes, to projects involving new development or upgrade of legacy applications, and to projects involving either full scale development/integration or integration only. The process used to create the model is shown in Figure 1.

Figure 1 Complexity points are computed as an estimate of the technical scope using information that is understood at project kick-off and easily gathered for completed projects. The number of complexity points computed for a project is a function of:
1. The relative complexity of each component which is assigned a value between one and eight (eight being the most complex). Complexity is determined by the following component factors: a) Exception processing, b) Interfaces, c) User Interface, d) Complex algorithms, e) Real time response, f) Critical path/order processing, g) Batch processing and h) Data Management.
2. The degree in which each component is impacted. Impacts are as follows: - A value of
Unaffected (0) is assigned when the component will not change and has no project impact
- A value of
No Change (1) is assigned when the component will not change and will be included in a System or Integration Test
- A value of
Major (60) is assigned when component change involves: a) adding or changing an interface, b) adding or changing functionality, c) adding or altering a middleware interface or interaction between online and batch processing, changing the underlying infrastructure or middleware, d) changing users/geographies, e) increasing volumes, or f) changing over 10% of the application


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- A value of Minor (20) is assigned when the component change does not qualify as a major change
- A value of
New (100) is assigned when the component is new
3.The number of component within the project. The complexity points assigned to each component are determined by multiplying compon...