Apportioned Effort (AE)


DEFINITION: Apportioned Effort (AE) Task Plans are a symbolistic relationship between two closely related organizational elements.
You should use this Earned Value Technique (EVT) between task plans which contain work packages with a related work scope which have a cause and effect type of relationship. The related work packages within the task plans shall have work scope dependency. The task plans are sequential or supportive, and have implied schedule interdependencies. The task plans have an implied Scheduled Work (SW) interdependencies. The implied relationship is normally stated in a set percentage.

Figure A, The Apportioned Effort Task Plan, illustrates the application theory of the Apportioned Effort EVT.

PLANNING

The Task Plans which are linked by using Apportion Effort EVT are essentially a master task plan and a slave task plan. If there is a known time delay between the work scheduled for the master task plan and the work scheduled for the slave task plan, then that time delay factor should be built into the plan.

As an example, use the AE technique for Quality Control, when the QC cost account has a "Work-In-Process? (WIP) inspection task relating directly to the fabrication cost account.

Another example of this type of EVT could be when the model shop is making 200 widgets. The widgets need to be formally inspected. The WIP inspection task only happens when the model shop produces a widget. Historical records indicates that the WIP inspection task for widgets is ten percent (10%) of the model shop based labor effort. Therefore, the "WIP? inspection labor task is related, on a percentage basis, to a preceding model shop labor task - i.e., it is an Apportioned Effort.

Another example might occur in software design. For verification certainty, the Project Office designates that the in-process software tests shall be performed by a department other then the department within which the software design engineer resides. The software test Task Manager apportions testing support effort to the design/coding effort as it progresses toward a complete operating module.

Keep in mind during the planning stage, that if the master cost account begins late, then the apportioned slave cost account will begin late. However, it may not follow that should the master account begin early that the apportioned slave account will begin early.

Figure B, Apportioned Effort Task Plan Scheduled Work (SW), illustrates the work scope planning relationship of the Apportioned Effort EVT.  

PERFORMANCE
Performed (P) is always earned in the manner for which it was planned. When the Apportioned Effort method is used, then Performed (P) is a direct result of the performance taken by the master Task Plan.  The Task Plans which are linked by using Apportion Effort EVT are a master task plan and a slave task plan. When work is performed in the master task plan, it is assumed by the apportioned methodology that work will be performed in the slave task plan. In other words wherever the dog goes the tail will follow. If the work performed within the master task plan begins late, then the work performed within the apportioned task plan will begin late. However, it may not follow that should the master task plan begin early that the apportioned task plan will begin early. The schedule delay therefore will be masked in the slave task plan because it is linked directly to the master task plan and when Performed (P) occurs in the master, it will by definition occur in the slave.

The Task Manager who is responsible for the slave task plan needs to be reminded that the established relationship between the master task plan and the slave task plan during the baseline period may produce a variance during actual performance of the work scope for which the Task Manager has no control. The slave task plan variance will normally be a direct result of the failure to perform to the plan as set forth within the master task plan. This lack of control over being taken for a ride by the Master Task Manager does not diminish the variance reporting responsibilities of the Slave Task Manager.

Figure C, Apportioned Effort Task Plan Performed (P), illustrates the performance measurement relationship of the Apportioned Effort EVT.