Project Management

LEVEL 5 ASSESSMENT SPECIFICATION

 

 

Student name:       Student ID number:  
Programme: BA Business Studies
Module: Project Management
Module code: SBLC5001

Contribution to Overall Module Assessment (%):

50%
Lecturer: Chandranna Rayadurg Internal Verifier: Anand Walser
Assignment Title: Assignment 2:

Case Study Analysis

Word count (or equivalent): 2500
Submission deadline: 18/10/2019

Return date of provisional marks & written feedback: tba
Submission method: All written assessments, where practical and possible, must be submitted via Turnitin unless otherwise instructed by the Lecturer. (Please DO NOT put this assessment specification into Turnitin or it will match many similarities with other students’ submissions.)

Alternative submission method (if applicable):

Late submission of the assessment will result in a late penalty mark. Penalties for late submission: Up to one week late, maximum mark of 40%. Over one week late, 0%. Only the Extenuating Circumstances Panel may approve a change to submission dates.

Academic honesty / referencing: Academic honesty is required. In the main body of your submission you must give credit to authors on whose research and ideas your work is based. Append to your submission a reference list that indicates the books, articles, etc. that you have used, cited or quoted in order to complete this assessment.

 

 

Module Learning Outcomes

(from module syllabus)

 

1. Be able to devise and implement a project management plan and work effectively within a project team.

2. Understand the contexts for project management and project planning in a localised and/or global context

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

TASK DESCRIPTION

 

 

Part1: Initiation

 

Scenario

 

Toys4Them is a small business selling toys in your local area. However, the business has grown to a greater extent in the last five years. Number of employees has been increased from 25 to 100 in the last 5 years and the turnover from £100k to £500k. It has been planned to open four additional branches next year. Part of the reason for the company’s success has been their strong work culture.

 

The company’s founders wanted to focus on using information technology and innovation to improve sales further. The current system works fairly well, however, only offline as the company does not have presence online. This is a major disadvantage for the company and hence the founder, John believes in e-commerce and wants to go online. After several weeks of consultations with his senior staff, John decided to implement a system for online sales to increase the business further and is ready to invest substantially. Davis, the head of Toys4Them IT department, which looks after their local network of computers, printers etc., is very optimistic that his IT department can setup and provide the necessary IT infrastructure. However, he is also aware of many solutions like outsourcing the whole system development and SasS (Software as Service) and HasS (Hardware as Service), which are part of cloud computing.

 

Tasks

 

1. Write a short report by critically evaluating the advantages and disadvantages of outsourcing of software development. [400 words]

 

 

2. Near accurate time and cost estimation are extremely important for any project to be successful. Assuming you have been asked to estimate the cost and time for this project, critically evaluate the applicability and suitability of different type of estimation methods. [400 words]

 

 

 

 

Part2: Planning

 

Scenario

 

You have an important role to play as a team member of this project and should finish it successfully within budget and on time, not compromising any functional requirements for a typical e-commerce website. You promote the idea of working with highly talented and motivated individuals who can work well on self-managed teams.

 

After several consultations with John and staff at Toys4Them over 8 weeks, several functional and non-functional requirements have been identified and documented. These requirements have to be analysed and a solution has to be designed, implemented, tested and deployed. Some non-functional requirements like online security have become very important as online fraud has become very sophisticated.

 

Some of the functional requirements are, customers should be able to order several toys over the Internet, receive them via express mail, return via express mail, cancel the order before it has been dispatched, edit the delivery address, automatic email generation to confirm the order. Several companies already provide this kind of service. Market research and corporate values suggested your company focus on educational and sports-related toys in addition to general merchandise toys. You also plan to serve an international market, providing information on products in several different languages. This system must be very user-friendly, providing customers, the ability to search for specific toys, by different categories, age, gender appropriateness, customer reviews, sport (for sports-related toy), language, and so on. Registered customers must be able to track delivery and return of toys, pay online or via other payment methods (including credit card or bank payments, cheque, PayPal etc.), and provide reviews of their online experience with Toys4Them customer services. The system must also be able to track referrals to the site from corporate partners and customer referrals, display advertisements and track customer usage patterns.

 

Tasks

3. Prepare a stakeholder analysis for this project, using the template provided on portal. Be creative in making up information about stakeholders. [500 words]

4. Develop a work breakdown structure (WBS) for the project. Break down the work to level 2 or level 3, as appropriate. In addition to the functional requirements listed in the scenario above, you can add suitable additional functionality as well. [300 words]

 

Part 3: Execution

Scenario

Your project has been going well until now with no major challenges and your team is proud of it. It has been two months into the project since it has started, and you have another four months to go. One of the key staff members, Bill met with an accident and has been advised to take bed rest at least for four months. This is a big setback for you as you cannot afford to lose even a single staff.

 

Tasks

5. How can the above unfortunate situation with Bill be solved? Write a short report with several alternatives and suggestions to meet up with John. [300 words]

Part 4: Controlling

Scenario

Due to economic recession, John could not promise any extra funds to hire or replace Bill and his own work is being piled up. Three months into the project, your project manager and your team are very concerned about the progress of the project. After reviewing the progress, it has been decided to have a series of bi-monthly meetings with all affected staff.

 

Tasks

 

6. After the first bi-monthly meeting and consultations with business experts, you have convinced John that the only way to finish project successfully is to compromise scope by having only absolute essential functionality. Critically evaluate what functionality and/or features can be compromised. [300 words]

 

Part 5: Closing

Scenario

Its one week before your final project presentation. You have been successful in meeting time and cost deadlines. However, scope had to be compromised. You have been really helpful in making this project a success. Your project manager has recognized your project management skills and is recommending you to be a project manager for the next project, which is starting soon.

 

 

Tasks

7. Prepare a lessons-learned report for the entire project. Include input from all stakeholders in summarizing the lessons learned. Use the template provided on portal.

[300 words]

 

 

LENGTH REQUIRED

 

 

2500 words +/- 10%. Any deviation from this will be penalised.

 

 

 

 

 

FORMATTING AND LAYOUT

 

 

Please note the following when completing your written assignment:

1. Writing: Written in English in an appropriate business/academic style

2. Focus: Focus only on the tasks set in the assignment.

3. Length: 2500 words

4. Formatting: Typed on A4 paper in Times New Roman or Arial font 12 with at least 2.5 centimetre space at each edge, double-spaced and pages numbered.

5. Document format: Report

6. Ensure a clear title, course, and name or ID number is on a cover sheet and a bibliography using Harvard referencing throughout is also provided.

7. Research: Research should use reliable and relevant sources of information e.g. academic books and journals that have been peer reviewed. The research should be extensive.

 

 

The use of a range of information sources is expected – academic books, peer reviewed journal articles, professional articles, press releases and newspaper articles, reliable statistics, company annual reports and other company information. All references must be in Harvard style.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

GUIDANCE FOR Students IN THE COMPLETION OF TASKS

 

NOTE: The guidance offered below is linked to the five generic assessment criteria overleaf.

 

1. Engagement with Literature Skills

Your work must be informed and supported by scholarly material that is relevant to and focused on the task(s) set. You should provide evidence that you have accessed an appropriate range of sources, which may be academic, governmental and industrial; these sources may include academic journal articles, textbooks, current news articles, organisational documents, and websites. You should consider the credibility of your sources; academic journals are normally highly credible sources while websites require careful consideration/selection and should be used sparingly. Any sources you use should be current and up-to-date, mostly published within the last five years or so, though seminal/important works in the field may be older. You must provide evidence of your research/own reading throughout your work, using a suitable referencing system, including in-text citations in the main body of your work and a reference list at the end of your work.

 

Guidance specific to this assessment: Your report must be supported by appropriate references to books, websites, journals etc as required above. Though templates are readily available on the student portal, you are free to create one for your project, but must be justified with evidence of referencing.

 

 

2. Knowledge and Understanding Skills

At level 5, you should be able to demonstrate: sound knowledge and critical understanding of the well-established concepts and principles of the subject area and the way in which those principles have developed; knowledge of the main methods of enquiry in the discipline. Knowledge relates to the facts, information and skills you have acquired through your learning. You demonstrate your understanding by interpreting the meaning of the facts and information (knowledge). This means that you need to select and include in your work the concepts, techniques, models, theories, etc. appropriate to the task(s) set. You should be able to explain the theories, concepts, etc. meaningfully to show your understanding. Your mark/grade will also depend upon the extent to which you demonstrate your knowledge and understanding.

 

Guidance specific to this assessment: Sound knowledge and critical understanding of project management concepts and phases must be presented in various tasks related to stakeholder register and management, work breakdown structure and Gantt Chart etc.

 

 

3. Cognitive and Intellectual Skills

You should be able to critically analyse information, and propose solutions to problems arising from that analysis, including the critical evaluation of the appropriateness of different approaches to solving problems. Your work must contain evidence of logical, analytical thinking, evaluation and synthesis. For example, to examine and break information down into parts, make inferences, compile, compare and contrast information. This means not just describing what! But also justifying: Why? How? When? Who? Where? At what cost? At all times, you must provide justification/evidence for your arguments and judgements. Evidence that you have reflected upon the ideas of others within the subject area is crucial to you providing a reasoned and informed debate within your work. Furthermore, you should provide evidence that you are able to make sound judgements and convincing arguments using data and concepts, with an understanding of the limits of knowledge, and how this influences analyses and interpretations. Sound, valid conclusions are necessary and must be derived from the content of your work. Where relevant, alternative solutions and recommendations may be proposed.

 

Guidance specific to this assessment: Report should include analysis of different approaches for managing projects, evaluating their solutions and applying to real life scenarios. For example; Stakeholder management might include sensitive information for some stakeholders, which must be confidential and may not be shared with many other stakeholders.

 

 

4. Practical Skills

At level 5, you should be able to use/deploy a range of established techniques within the discipline and apply underlying concepts and principles outside the context in which they were first studied, including, where appropriate, the application of those principles in an employment context. You should be able to demonstrate how the subject-related concepts and ideas relate to real world situations and/or a particular context. How do they work in practice? You will deploy models, methods, techniques, and/or theories, in that context, to assess current situations, perhaps to formulate plans or solutions to solve problems, or to create artefacts, some of which may be creative. This is likely to involve, for instance, the use of real-world artefacts, examples and cases, the application of a model within an organisation and/or benchmarking one theory or organisation against others based on stated criteria. You should show awareness of the limitations of concepts and theories when applied in particular contexts.

 

Guidance specific to this assessment: Theories, practices and models must be explored and considered for suitability for projects in general and selected project in particular in real life scenarios.

 

 

5. Transferable Skills for Life and Professional Practice

Your work must provide evidence of the qualities and transferable skills necessary for employment requiring the exercise of personal responsibility and decision-making. This includes demonstrating: professional development to advance existing skills and acquire new competences that will enable you to assume significant responsibility within organisations; that you can initiate and complete tasks and procedures, whether individually and/or collaboratively; that you can use appropriate media to effectively communicate information, arguments and analysis in a variety of forms to specialist and non-specialist audiences; fluency of expression; clarity and effectiveness in presentation and organisation. Work should be coherent and well-structured in presentation and organisation.

 

 

Guidance specific to this assessment: The above criterion will be demonstrated in terms of its appropriateness to a professional audience in part. It will also be met via the standards of the presentation and organisation of the essay.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Student FEEDBACK FORM – Assignment 2

 

 

This section details the extent to which the assessment criteria are demonstrated by you, which in turn determines your mark. The marks available for each category of skill are shown. Lecturers will use the space provided to comment on the achievement of the task(s), including those areas in which you have performed well and areas that would benefit from development/improvement.

 

Page 7 of 11

 

 

Generic Assessment Criteria Marks available Marks

awarded

1. Engagement with Literature Skills    
Require students to carry out relevant research identifying various sources likes books, latest journals etc. Marks will be awarded based on the research that is relevant to finding answers to the given task. Good answers show evidence of research beyond the case material provided.

 

   
  10  
2. Knowledge and Understanding Skills

 

   
This criterion assesses students’ acquired knowledge and understanding of different theories, models through research and independent study. Marks are given for identification and application of relevant theoretical models.    
  15  
3. Cognitive and Intellectual Skills

 

   
This criterion carries a significant amount of marks, as analysis is required in many complex tasks, which require many skills.

Analysis comes from appropriate data and information to provide insights.

   
  30  
4. Practical Application Skills

 

   
Application of concepts, theories, models, skills etc. to given tasks, which are similar to real life scenarios, is very critical to be successful in employment. ALL recommendations to be sourced from and relevant to the analysis provided.    
  30  
5. Transferable Skills for Life and Professional Practice

 

   
Report format normally includes the following sections: Executive Summary, Introduction, Main Findings, Conclusions, Recommendations, References and Appendices. Your report should be written in a suitable academic writing style i.e. using the third person.

 

15  
     

 

 

Assessment Mark (Assessment marks are subject to ratification at the Exam Board. These comments and marks are to give feedback on module work and are for guidance only until they are confirmed. ) Late Submission Penalties (tick if appropriate) %
  Up to 1 week late (40% Max)    
  Over 1 week late (0%)    

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

GENERIC ASSESSMENT CRITERIA

 

 

Level 5
In accordance with the Framework for Higher Education Qualifications, at the end of Level 5 students will be expected to have developed sound knowledge and critical understanding of the well-established concepts and principles in their field of study, and of the way in which those principles have developed. They will have learned to apply those concepts and principles more widely outside the context in which they were first studied, including, where appropriate, the application of those principles in an employment context. They will have knowledge of the main methods of enquiry in the subject area, and ability to evaluate critically different approaches to problem solving. They will possess an understanding of the limits of their knowledge, and how this influences their analyses and interpretations. They will be able to use a range of established techniques to initiate and undertake critical analysis of information, and to propose solutions to problems arising from that analysis. They will be able to effectively communicate information, arguments and analysis in a variety of forms to specialist and non-specialist audiences, and deploy key techniques of the discipline effectively. They will be able to undertake further training, develop existing skills and acquire new competences that will enable them to assume significant responsibility within organisations. They will have the qualities and transferable skills necessary for employment requiring the exercise of personal responsibility and decision-making.

 

 

Level 5 FAIL MARGINAL FAIL SATISFACTORY

(3rd / Pass)

GOOD

(2.2 / Pass)

VERY GOOD

(2.1 / Merit)

EXCELLENT

(1st / Distinction)

EXCEPTIONAL

(1st / Distinction)

Category 0-29% 30-39% 40-49% 50-59% 60-69% 70-84% 85-100%
Engagement with literature (including reading, referencing,

academic conventions and

academic honesty)

Little or no evidence of reading and/or reliance on inappropriate sources.

Views and findings mostly unsupported and non-authoritative.

Referencing conventions used incoherently or largely absent.

Poor engagement with essential reading. No evidence of wider reading. Reliance on inappropriate sources, and/or indiscriminate use of sources. Heavily reliant on information gained through class contact. Inconsistent and weak use of referencing. Engagement with a limited range of mostly relevant and credible sources. Some omissions and minor errors.

Referencing conventions evident though not always applied accurately or consistently.

Engagement with an appropriate range of literature, including sources retrieved independently. Some over-reliance on texts. Referencing may show minor inaccuracies or inconsistencies. Engagement with a wide range of literature, including sources retrieved independently.

Selection of relevant and credible sources. Very good use of referencing, with no/very few inaccuracies or inconsistencies.

Engagement with an extensive range of relevant and credible literature. Consistently accurate application of referencing. Exceptional engagement with an extensive range of relevant and credible literature. High-level referencing skills consistently applied.
Knowledge and understanding (Sound knowledge and critical understanding of the well-established concepts and principles in their field of study; knowledge of the main methods of enquiry in the discipline.) Major gaps in knowledge with unsatisfactory, uncritical understanding of the subject matter. Much irrelevant material. Substantial inaccuracies. Significantly flawed understanding of the main methods of enquiry in the discipline. Fragmentary knowledge, with only superficial critical understanding. Some significant inaccuracies and/or irrelevant material. Incomplete or partially flawed understanding of the main methods of enquiry in the discipline. Limited but adequate knowledge and critical understanding of the well-established concepts and principles within the subject area, with a few gaps in the selection of material. A narrow critical understanding of the main methods of enquiry. Knowledge is reasonably detailed and accurate. A good critical understanding of the well-established concepts and principles and the main methods of enquiry, with minor gaps in the selection of material. Knowledge is reasonably extensive. Exhibits very competent critical understanding of the well-established concepts and principles of the subject and the main methods of enquiry. Breadth and depth of knowledge. Excellent, detailed knowledge and highly critical understanding of the well-established concepts and principles of the subject and the main methods of enquiry. Exceptionally detailed knowledge and outstanding critical understanding of the well-established concepts and principles of the subject and the main methods of enquiry. May go beyond established theories.
Cognitive and intellectual skills

(Critical evaluation and analysis of concepts and principles; argument and judgementthe limits of their knowledge, and how this influences their analyses and interpretations.)

Wholly or almost wholly descriptive work. Little or no critical evaluation and analysis of concepts and principles.

Failure to develop arguments, leading to illogical or invalid judgements. Unsubstantiated generalisations or opinion, made without use of any credible evidence.

 

Largely descriptive work, with superficial use of critical evaluation and analysis of concepts and principles. Weak development of arguments and judgements. Information accepted uncritically, uses generalised statements made with scant evidence and unsubstantiated opinions. Ideas sometimes illogical and contradictory. Limited attempt at critical evaluation and analysis of concepts and principles, tending towards description.

Some evidence to support arguments and judgements but these may be underdeveloped, with a little inconsistency / mis-interpretation or failure to fully recognise limits of knowledge.

 

 

Some critical evaluation and analysis of concepts and principles, though descriptive in parts.

An emerging awareness the limits of their knowledge and ability to use evidence to support the argument though with some tendency to assert/state opinion rather than argue on the basis of reason and evidence.

Mostly valid arguments and logical judgements.

Sound critical evaluation and analysis of concepts. Is selective in the range of evidence used and synthesises rather than describes. Ability to devise arguments that show awareness of different stances, and use evidence convincingly, to support appropriate and valid judgements. Excellent critical evaluation and analysis of concepts and principles leading to logical, evidence-based, reasoned arguments and judgements. Explicit recognition of other stances and a strong awareness of the limits of their knowledge.

A capacity for independent thought and ability to ‘see beyond the question’, suggesting some grasp of the broader field and wider concepts.

Outstanding critical evaluation and analysis of concepts and principles. Uses evidence exceptionally well to connect ideas, and support highly logical and persuasive, arguments and judgements. Evidence of independent thought and ability to ‘see beyond the question’, suggesting a clear grasp of the broader field and wider concepts. Perceptive recognition of the limits of their knowledge, and how this influences their analyses and interpretations.
Practical skills

(Apply underlying concepts and principles more widely outside the context in which they were first studied; use a range of established techniques; propose solutions to problems arising from analysis.)

Limited or no use of established methods, materials, tools and/or techniques.

Little or no appreciation of the context of the application.

Limited understanding of the application of theory to practice or making appropriate links between the two.

Very weak problem-solving skills outside the context in which they were first studied.

Rudimentary application of established methods, materials, tools and/or techniques but without consideration and competence. Flawed appreciation of the context of the application.

Weak understanding of the application of theory to practice, with only occasional evidence of making appropriate links between the two. Weak problem-solving skills outside the context in which they were first studied.

 

 

An adequate awareness and mostly appropriate application of established methods, materials, tools and/or techniques.

Basic appreciation of the context of the application. Theoretical knowledge and understanding applied in practice, but not always making logical links between the two.

Can identify problems and propose basic solutions outside the context in which they were first studied.

A good and appropriate application of established methods, materials, tools and/or techniques.

Clear appreciation of the context of the application. Mainly consistent, accurate and logical application of theory to practice, making appropriate links between the two.

Can identify problems and propose mostly appropriate solutions outside the context in which they were first studied.

A very good application of a range of established methods, materials, tools and/or techniques.

Very good consideration of the context of the application, with perceptive insights. Consistent, accurate and logical application of theory to practice, making appropriate links between the two. Can identify problems and propose appropriate solutions outside the context in which they were first studied.

Evidence of some creativity.

An advanced application of a range of established methods, materials, tools and/or techniques.

The context of the application is well considered, and insightful.

Consistent, accurate and logical application of theory to practice, making well-developed links between the two. Can identify problems and propose excellent, creative solutions outside the context in which they were first studied.

Exceptional levels of application and deployment skills using established methods, materials, tools and/or techniques. Consistent, accurate and logical application of theory to practice, making highly developed links between the two. Can identify routine and non-routine problems and propose quite sophisticated, creative solutions outside the context in which they were first studied.
Transferable skills for life and professional practice

(Effectively communicate in a variety of forms

to specialist and non-specialist audiences; the qualities and transferable skills necessary for employment requiring the exercise of personal responsibility and decision-making.)

Communication medium is inappropriate or misapplied.

Work is poorly structured, disorganised and/or confusingly expressed. Very weak use of language and/or very inappropriate style. Failure to work effectively as part of a group. Little or no evidence of the skills for employment requiring the exercise of personal responsibility and decision-making.

 

 

Communication medium is poorly designed and/or not suitable for the audience.

Work is poorly presented in a disjointed manner. It is loosely, and at times incoherently, structured, with information and ideas often poorly expressed. Weak use of language and/or inappropriate style. Flawed approach to group work, meeting only partial obligations to others. Limited evidence of the skills for employment requiring the exercise of personal responsibility and decision-making.

Can communicate in a suitable medium for the audience but with some room for improvement.

Mostly ordered presentation and structure in which relevant ideas / concepts are reasonably expressed. Work may lack coherence in places. Can work as part of a group, meeting most obligations to others but perhaps with limited involvement in group activities.

Demonstrates the basic skills for employment requiring the exercise of personal responsibility and decision-making, with some areas of minor weakness.

Can communicate effectively in a suitable medium for the audience, but may have minor errors.

Mostly coherent, organised work, in a suitable structure and is for the most part clearly expressed. Can work effectively independently and/or as part of a team, with clear contribution to group activities.

Demonstrates the skills for employment requiring the exercise of personal responsibility and decision-making, with some areas of strength and some of minor weakness.

Can communicate well, confidently and consistently in a suitable medium for the audience.

Work is coherent, fluent, well-structured and organised. Can work very well autonomously and/or as part of a team, with very good contribution to group activities.

Demonstrates very good skills for employment requiring the exercise of personal responsibility and decision-making, with just occasional minor weakness.

Can communicate professionally confidently and consistently in a suitable medium for the audience.

Work is coherent, very fluent and is presented proficiently. Can work autonomously with initiative. Where relevant can work professionally within a team, showing leadership skills as appropriate, and meeting obligations. Demonstrates excellent skills for employment requiring the exercise of personal responsibility and decision-making and an appetite for further development.

 

Can communicate with an exceptionally high level of professionalism, highly suitable for the audience.

Work is exceptionally coherent, very fluent and is presented professionally. Can work exceptionally well within a team, showing leadership skills. Demonstrates exceptional skills for employment requiring the exercise of personal responsibility and decision-making and an appetite for further development.