Case Study for Project Management

Assignment Spring 2018
Note: The following is entirely hypothetical. It is not actually happening
but you are required to prepare some documentation as if it were a real
The QA Higher Education (QAHE) is planning a full refurbishment of its teaching rooms and computing
labs in the London Campus (London students) or Birmingham Campus (Birmingham students) to
ensure students and staff all have an excellent learning environment and access to the latest technology
to support their studies and teaching. This will include new hardware, software and network
infrastructure as appropriate as well as classroom refurbishment, furniture, all necessary peripherals
and improvements to the IT support desk, including a local IT support representative to be placed
permanently in the London Campus. You are the project manager for this project, starting the planning
work at around Easter time with a view to the major disruptive works being carried out during the
summer break. The main project sponsor is the Managing Director, but with full co-operation from the
Director of Operations.
Develop the following four pieces of documentation:

  1. Sample Project Initiation Document (PID) This will include budgetary information,
    timescales, objectives, approach, key staff and stakeholder analysis, etc. (approx. 750 words).
  2. Risk Register containing, but not limited to, at least 10 fully documented risks, including owner,
    mitigation and contingency actions, pre-and post- action weighting and scores, plus discussion
    demonstrating the use of the risk register with examples of good practice from other published
  3. Project Plan Gantt chart with at least 20 items in the WBS. The Gantt chart should include all
    necessary core elements (tasks, dependencies, milestones, summary tasks) and a clear
    indication of the critical path. It is recommended that you use Excel to create the Gantt chart,
    but any tool that allows you to present this information appropriately may be employed. For
    example, you may also use one of the many freeware options on the internet. All diagrams
    should be embedded into your report as images;
  4. A short report to the project sponsor (approx. 1,000 words) containing both of the following:
    a. An explanation of the importance of quality risk management plans and the potential
    impact on the project were rigorous risk management processes to be ignored. This is
    because you are concerned that QAHE will try and do everything too fast and cheaply
    and you do not want to be involved with a failed project;
    b. The Director of Operations says they have had some negative past experience of
    PRINCE2 projects. So you must provide an analysis and critique of the potential
    relevance of PRINCE2 as a methodology for this project (including strengths and
    weaknesses) and a recommendation as to whether or not this should be used. There
    is no right or wrong answer for this and hence marks will be given on the basis of how
    well you have explained and justified your decision. You should use at least two real,
    comprehensively referenced examples in order to illustrate your arguments.
    It is suggested that you use the triple constraint of time, cost and quality as a basis for discussion of
    some of the above where relevant, reflecting on which of the three elements may be the most dominant
    for this project and how that affects attitude to risk, methodology, etc.
    Note that considerable class time will be devoted to guiding you and helping you complete these tasks
    so attendance at the classes will be of immense use in achieving a good assignment mark. Reasonable
    assumptions can be made throughout (and indeed are necessary) and students are encouraged to ask
    for clarification whenever necessary. Also note that you are not expected to have any specific technical
    knowledge of computing architecture, building refurbishment or facilities management, hence any
    reasonable assumptions may be made (must be stated clearly) and your lecturers will be happy to
    advise where necessary.
    IMPORTANT: It is absolutely essential that your answers are well referenced. This means that
    published work (text books, journals, other printed material such as newspapers and credible magazine
    articles) is used to illustrate your points to enhance the validity and credibility of your work. Web sites
    may also be used although in some instances they are less reliable (not peer reviewed or subject to
    editorial constraints) and hence should be used sparingly. Failure to reference correctly may result in
    a particularly poor mark and possible failure. In contrast, good and extensive use of relevant references
    that inform and enhance your work will be awarded high marks.

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