Earned Value Management (EVM) is a project management technique that objectively tracks the actual accomplishment of work on a project. By combining and integrating measurements of technical accomplishments, budget performance, and schedule performance, EVM is able to answer the questions:
- Is the work getting done?
- Is the project ahead of or behind schedule?
- Is the project over or under budget?
EVM’s single integrated methodology is able to provide an early warning of performance problems while there is still time for corrective action.
The basic guidelines for establishing and applying an integrated Earned Value management System (EVMS) are provided in the Electronic Industries Alliance (EIA) and American National Standards Institute (ANSI) Standard ANSI/EIA-748-A. This Standard is available for purchase from Global Engineering Documents.
You can gain a layman’s understanding of Earned Value Management by viewing this PowerPoint presentation created by the Department’s Office of IT Policy and Planning. You can also access a sample methodology for calculating and tracking the various reporting parameters required of an Earned Value Management System (EVMS).
Additional insight into the EVMS guidelines included in Section 2 of the ANSI/EIA-748-A Standard can be found in the NDIA ANSI/EIA-748-A Intent Guide.
The application of EVM techniques on a project requires an initial evaluation and acceptance of the EVMS that will be utilized. The NDIA ANSI/EIA-748-A Acceptance Guide defines a process whereby a project management team can conduct such an evaluation and determine compliance of the EVMS’ implementation.
The process of reviewing a project’s application of approved EVMS processes is known as surveillance. The NDIA Surveillance Guide defines a standard industry surveillance approach for the purpose of focusing on the effective use of an EVMS and ensuring that the key elements of the EVM process are maintained over time and on subsequent applications.
A wealth of further information relating to Earned Value Management techniques and Earned Value Management Systems has been published, and an Internet search for “Earned Value Management” will produce hundreds of thousands of hits, including links to a vast number of professional publications.
- Questions regarding this section may be directed to the Project Management Administrator