Where I work, our Mission Statement is “We Get Projects Done”. The implication is one of speed, in that the project gets finished in a timely matter. For a long time we relied on gut feel for the speed of the project completion. We have now developed an equation to quantify the velocity (or time for completion) of a project.
Estimating the project velocity can give the project team a fair estimate of the days it will take to complete the project based just on the project budget. There are many factors that can alter a project’s schedule, weather, regulatory demands, client changes, etc. So this tool was not designed to be anything but a rough estimate of the potential time needed based solely on the budget.
EQUATION: Project Velocity (days) = Budget (in dollars) +1737.3 / 173.65
For example, a $10,000 project would be expected to be completed in 67 days. The management challenge is to work to beat that schedule.
To come up with this equation we took 25 completed projects and plotted their budget vs. the time in days it took from the first invoice projects including Phase I Environmental Assessments, Phase II soil sampling, Compliance Assistance, Industrial Hygiene project, VCP permitting, waste disposal and other types of projects. The correlation was pretty good (0.8) considering the sampling size and the wide variety of projects. To obtain a higher correlation, in the future we will be conducting a similar analysis on only one specific type of project.