Problems appeared early
The problems started with Step One. There seemed to be so many subject areas
just not identified within the present ESA. Where, for example, does one find
definitions of project management terms like project and management? Or where
does one place a discussion of project management environment, or the process
of control, or the procurement function or an analysis of project risks? Again,
the application to project management of Pareto's Law of Distribution, or success/failure
factors in project management - where do these belong?
Still other subjects appeared to be fairly obvious, yet nonetheless not specifically
identified within the current ESA publication. The development of a Work Breakdown
Structure, and the precise rules which must govern an effective structure are
surely part of Scope Management? Management of contingency allowance and value
engineering are clearly part of Cost Management, while negotiating is no doubt
part of Communication Management. But is it a major division or a subset of Personal
In all this it occurred to me that what the ESA Management Group had boldly
and successfully identified was a conceptual framework for the body of knowledge
of project management. Concept by definition infers development in a "top
down" fashion. This is akin to the estimator who in the concept stage of
a project develops an "Order of Magnitude" estimate "top down"
Figure 6: The practices of Human Resources and Procurement: project facilitation
What I had on my hands, however, was a whole lot of scattered bits of information
at the detail level. Like the estimator developing a fixed price tender estimate,
with all the detail at hand, I was endeavoring to put it together "bottom
up". Quite a useful exercise I thought to myself.
What I was trying to do was to look at the ESA breakdown from the point of
view of classifying my material for teaching purposes, albeit industry specific
project management. Since education is the backbone for advancing any profession,
surely someone else must have done this before? Yet so far no one has come forward
with positive recommendations for enhancing the ESA work to date.