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You have to read the High Quality Institute (HQI) case study and answer the followings:

  1. Determine the functional and non-functional requirements for TLS.
  1. Develop a Work Breakdown Structure (WBS) description supported with a table for the TLS project explaining the ID, description, and duration for each task.
  1. Develop PERT/CPM chart explaining the early and late start for each task. Identify the critical path and the total time to finish the project.
  1. Use the class diagram to represent the student registration by drawing the data model diagram.
  1. Use the information in table 1, calculate the net present value, the payback period, and the return on investment by using a discount rate of 6 percent. The development costs for the project were $20,000. Do a five-year return on investment.
  1. Develop a poster to provide a visual summary of your ideas related to the High Quality Institute (HQI) and its project. Your poster must include all the answers of tasks (1-5) above.

High Quality Institute (HQI) is a technological educational institute provides different courses in information technology. The institute wants to develop and deploy new Teaching and Learning System (TLS). The TLS required to install and configure email, web, database and management servers to provide the required services such as emails for staff and students, web page and database management system. In addition, the IT infrastructure must be established to provides the communication and networking facilities with the required security and system availability. Different types of network devices and supporting servers including switches and routers must be installed and configured with all the required cabling services. Security devices and backup services must be used to improve the system performance.

The institute wants to use two online learning systems, Undergraduate Learning System (ULS) and Postgraduate Learning System (PLS). The software developer staff at the IT department assigned the task of developing both learning systems from scratch.

The head of the institute wants to conduct a complete testing procedures to the whole system to find any bug and problem prior to the final system deployment.

The database system of the new system must allow each student in each semester to be assigned with an advisor. The advisor help student to register for units. Each student should register for the units with the support of an advisor. Hoverer, if the student’s advisor is not available, the student can register with the support of any other available advisor. The system must keep track of students, the assigned advisor for each, by recording the name of the advisor that support student registrations for each semester.

The institute uses several methods to evaluate the investments is this project. Table 1, shows the information the accountant provided to the system analyst to calculate Net Present Value (NPV), Payback Period and Return on Investment (ROI).

Year

No.

Category

0

1

2

3

4

5

1

Value of benefits

$ 7,000.00

$ 7,000.00

$ 7,000.00

$ 7,000.00

$ 7,000.00

2

Development Cost

-$ 20,000.00

0

0

0

0

0

3

Annual expenses

-$ 2,000.00

-$ 2,000.00

-$ 2,000.00

-$ 2,000.00

-$ 2,000.00

4

Net benefit/costs

$ 10,000.00

5

Discount factor

1.00

6

Net present value

-$ 10,000.00

7

Cumulative NPV

-$ 10,000.00

Table 1: Five-year investment evaluation

Determining the functional and non-functional requirements for TLS

Project management is the process of completing a certain task to attain some specific objectives. It is applied with several effective techniques such as critical path method, network diagram (Kaus & et. al., 2007). The present report is based on developing new Teaching and Learning System (TLS) for High-Quality Institute (HQI) for better education of students and providing them easy access to portal or units. For this purpose, project plan has been prepared with the application of Gantt chart and critical path. Furthermore, evaluation of the project has been done through payback period, net present value and return on investment. Moreover, the work-breakdown structure has been prepared for overall TLS project.

There are different requirements of TLS for HQI so as to ensure the better education of the students. The functional requirement is related to installation and configuration of email, database management and development of web-page. At the same time, installing switches and routers for the smooth functioning of supporting network is called as the functional requirement (Burke, 2013). This proves to be effective for each student to get registered in the relatively less time span and submit their assignment in an effectual manner. Furthermore, unit registration procedure will be easy for entire college through which it becomes easy for completion of all the related task. This, in turn, students can seek the advice of available teacher in order to accomplish their allotted task (Stevenson & Hojati, 2007). Moreover, functional requirement of the system is that all data should be recorded for the performance of students and advisor.

The non-functional requirements are related to keeping the track on the performance of the students and assigned advisor of them (Yang, 2006; Van Lamsweerde, 2009). It is supported with the functional requirement through which HQI can easily maintain its high performance and ensure the betterment of the students. Therefore, a number of students should have easy access to the portal or unit for timely completion of their data (Crawford, 2007). Apart from this, the functional requirement is related to making sure the availability of teacher of advisor for the guidance of learners (Rao, Savsani & Vakharia, 2012). It proves to be effective for knowledge of postgraduate and undergraduate learners of HQI.

The work breakdown structure for TLS has been provided as follows-

Sr. No.

Activities

Duration (weeks)

Description

1

Assessing the requirement

1

Internal environment f HQI is assessed in order to determine the functional and non-functional requirement of the project

2

Collecting the information

2

Management will be asked about the current learning process

3

Framing the objectives

1

Installing and configuring email, website and database management for all staff

Easy registration of students to the unit

Availing advisor

4

Allocating the task

3

The project team will be allocated task related to installing supporting server, security, the configuration of database etc.

5

Installing and configuring email and database management

4

Access to all staff and management

6

Establishing IT infrastructure

5

Preparing the lab and other related facilities by installing software’s

7

Availing system and security

2

Security check of overall IT system

8

Installing supporting servers

3

All working areas will be covered

9

Reviewing the performance

2

Continuous monitoring through project manager

10

Modification

2

Changes in the process

11

Sustain system performance

3

Implementation

12

Execution

1

Completion

The Critical Path Method is considered as the effective aspect in which duration of the overall project is reduced to a great extent (Kerzner, 2013). The below-mentioned network diagram is prepared to assess the longest path of the project in which several activities are completed simultaneously. The activity table has been presented in the following manner. It contains the overall plan for the implementation of testing of TLS. This facilitates corporation to arrange for the necessary resources and accordingly deliver the respective task among team members. It proves to be effective for corporation to ensure timely completion of all project activities.  Furthermore, project will be started in the October month and it will last till March 2018. In this manner, estimated time for the project is 29 weeks so the efforts are put to reduce this time and accomplish the long as well as short term objectives of the business in the right manner.

Developing the Work Breakdown Structure (WBS)

Table 1: Activity table

Task name

Duration

Start

Finish

Predecessors

Project

21 wks

Thu 12-10-17

Wed 07-03-18

   Assessing the requirement

1 wk

Thu 12-10-17

Wed 18-10-17

   Collecting the information

2 wks

Thu 19-10-17

Wed 01-11-17

2

   Framing the objectives

1 wk

Thu 19-10-17

Wed 25-10-17

2

   Allocating the task

3 wks

Thu 02-11-17

Wed 22-11-17

3,4

   Installing and configuring email and database management

4 wks

Thu 02-11-17

Wed 29-11-17

3

   Establishing IT infrastructure

5 wks

Thu 23-11-17

Wed 27-12-17

2,5

   Availing system and security

2 wks

Thu 28-12-17

Wed 10-01-18

6,7

   Installing supporting servers

3 wks

Thu 26-10-17

Wed 15-11-17

4

   Reviewing the performance

2 wks

Thu 11-01-18

Wed 24-01-18

8,9

   Modification

2 wks

Thu 25-01-18

Wed 07-02-18

10

   Sustain system performance

3 wks

Thu 08-02-18

Wed 28-02-18

11

   Execution

1 wk

Thu 01-03-18

Wed 07-03-18

12

Figure 1: Gantt chart

The Gantt chart is displaying all the activities covered under the project through which manager can allocate the task among overall team. At the same time, project activities can be started in the respective time with the close monitoring (Kaus & et. al., 2007). This facilitates to note down the starting time and ending time of each activity whereby resources can also be arranged accordingly.

Figure 2: Critical Path method

According to the critical path method the longest path of the project is 1+2+3+5+7+8+10+11+12+13=21, however; overall duration of the project was 29 weeks but with the use of critical path method duration has been reduced by 8 weeks. This indicates that project management techniques are helpful for TLS completion so that advantages can be provided to the organization in relatively less time span. Apart from this, activity, 6, 4 and 9 are completed simultaneously and separate time and resources are not allocated for the same. This proves to be effective for organization in delivering the good quality of services to students.

The unit registration will be done in the following manner which assists students to get themselves registered in the unit (Ahlemann, 2009). In this regard, data model diagram has been presented through which at first user or student login in the system by entering their name, ID and class etc. However, they can also get an option to find their advisor by typing the name. Further, the display window will provide more information related to the assignment or their unit. This diagram is showing the subject list or course list which can be referred by students for the purpose of their quick registration (McAuley & et. al., 2010). In this manner, the model is helpful for existing or new learners.

The data model is showing that unit registration is quite easy because of availability of several options. These options consist of course data, availability of advisor, search for users etc. This in turn learner can get several benefits from the TLS system (Cleland & Ireland, 2006). Also, they do not have to ask or inquire about different courses or detail of the same. This is because TLS would make it possible for them get all information on their own. This aids to accomplish their task effectively and get themselves enrolled without any kind of difficulties (Winter & et. al., 2006; Trietsch & Baker, 2012).

The TLS project is evaluated with varied capital budgeting techniques. These are analyzed as follows-

  • The net present value-The below-mentioned table is showing that net present value of TLS project is positive which is favourable for HQI. However, the net present value is low but it is positive (Bierman & Smidt, 2012). Owing to this, HQI should accept the project and TLS can be implemented in the Institute for the learning of students.

Table 2: NPV of TLS

Years

Value of benefits

Annual expenses

Net value of benefits

6%

 Present value

0

 20000

1

7000

2000

5000

0.9434

4717

2

7000

2000

5000

0.89

4450

3

7000

2000

5000

0.8396

4198

4

7000

2000

5000

0.7921

3960.5

5

7000

2000

5000

0.7473

3736.5

Total present value

4.2124

21062

Initial investment

20000

Net present value

1062

  • Payback period- According to this technique, initial investment or development cost involved in the TLS would be recovered within 4 years. However, benefits of the system are long-term but it would take time to recover the cost (Truong, Partington & Peat, 2008).

Table 3: Payback period

Payback period method

Initial investment

20000

Annual cash flow

5000(7000-2000)

Payback period

Initial investment/Net annual cash inflow

4

  • Return on Investment- The return generated from the TLS is 25% which is positive and appropriate (Bennouna, Meredith & Marchant, 2010). Owing to this, the project can be accepted as it is considered as the effective one for the growth and development of HQI.

Table 4: Return on Investment

Return on Investment

Net profit

5000

Cost of investment

20000

Net profit/cost of Investment*100

25

 The poster consisting detailed information related to the TLS project. It reflects the functional and non-functional requirement of the project along with work-breakdown structure. This assists management or assessor to get information about activities which are covered under the project. Moreover, class diagram and critical path method are also completed or attached in the poster through which overall plan can be understood with a glance. Not only this but the evaluation of project with the use of capital budgeting has also been done. This in turn corporation can effectively gather evidence that whether the project is effective in term of net present value, recovery of initial investment and return on investment.

Developing the PERT/CPM chart

Conclusions And Recommendations

The aforementioned report concludes that TLS system can be implemented by using suitable technologies such as critical path method. This is helpful in reducing the time consumed in the project and ensuring the overall well-being of the business. It can also be said that project evaluation techniques are helpful through which management come to know about the potential benefit of a particular project in the future time span. This in turn decision related to continuity or discontinuity of the project can be taken. In addition to this, a work-breakdown structure is presenting that project under consideration derived long-term benefit for the business by involving staff members, students and management of HQI. Moreover, TLS project ensures easy access of students to their unit and advisor so the chances to score good marks in their semester is possible. This is because hurdles in the teaching will be removed and digital aspect of the teaching ease students in completing their assignment’s or units.

According to the evaluation of the report, it has been found that project should continue because of its several benefits for HQI. For this purpose, skilled and competent personnel should be appointed in the team and proper budget or financial resources should be employed. It would be effective in completing the project in a successful manner and save the overall time of HQI. Furthermore, critical path method should be employed through which project manager can merge two or more activities in the one. On the other hand, the project team should go through continuous training and monitoring of task they are doing. It aids to assess the loopholes and taking the corrective action on the right time. This contributes towards meeting the expectations of long as well as short-term objectives of the corporation. Apart from this, project evaluation techniques and critical path method are showing the effectiveness of TLS so management is recommended to implement the same by employed suitable staff or project team. Furthermore, risk register should be prepared in order to assess the potential risk and taking the corrective actions for smooth operation of the project.

References

Burke, R. (2013). Project management: planning and control techniques. New Jersey, USA.

Stevenson, W. J., & Hojati, M. (2007). Operations management(Vol. 8). Boston: McGraw-Hill/Irwin.

Crawford, J. K. (2007). Project management maturity model (p. 75). New York: Auerbach Publications.

Kerzner, H. (2013). Project management: a systems approach to planning, scheduling, and controlling. John Wiley & Sons.

Ahlemann, F. (2009). Towards a conceptual reference model for project management information systems. International Journal of Project Management, 27(1), 19-30.

Cleland, D. L., & Ireland, L. R. (2006). Project management. McGraw-Hill Professional.

Winter, M., Smith, C., Morris, P., & Cicmil, S. (2006). Directions for future research in project management: The main findings of a UK government-funded research network. International journal of project management, 24(8), 638-649.

Bennouna, K., Meredith, G. G., & Marchant, T. (2010). Improved capital budgeting decision making: evidence from Canada. Management decision, 48(2), 225-247.

Truong, G., Partington, G., & Peat, M. (2008). Cost-of-capital estimation and capital-budgeting practice in Australia. Australian journal of management, 33(1), 95-121.

McAuley, A., Stewart, B., Siemens, G., & Cormier, D. (2010). The MOOC model for digital practice.

Bierman Jr, H., & Smidt, S. (2012). The capital budgeting decision: economic analysis of investment projects. Routledge.

Kaus, M. R., Brock, K. K., Pekar, V., Dawson, L. A., Nichol, A. M., & Jaffray, D. A. (2007). Assessment of a model-based deformable image registration approach for radiation therapy planning. International Journal of Radiation Oncology* Biology* Physics, 68(2), 572-580.

Yang, S. J. (2006). Context aware ubiquitous learning environments for peer-to-peer collaborative learning. Educational Technology & Society, 9(1), 188-201.

Van Lamsweerde, A. (2009). Requirements engineering: From system goals to UML models to software (Vol. 10). Chichester, UK: John Wiley & Sons.

Rao, R. V., Savsani, V. J., & Vakharia, D. P. (2012). Teaching–learning-based optimization: an optimization method for continuous non-linear large scale problems. Information Sciences, 183(1), 1-15.

Trietsch, D., & Baker, K. R. (2012). PERT 21: Fitting PERT/CPM for use in the 21st century. International journal of project management, 30(4), 490-502.

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