Studies in Cost Management
Earned Value—An Integrated Project Management Approach
LEE R. LAMBERT, PMP, LAMBERT AND ASSOCIATES
Earned Value Management (EVM), often referred to simply as earned value, is a productive technique for the management of cost and schedule that is required on many U.S. government contracts. In recent years, EVM has shown itself to be equally valuable when applied to other complex projects, whether in private, commercial, or government environments.
In the world of EVM, the role of the Control Account Manager (CAM) is pivotal in the process. The project manager and all of the other traditional project management contributors are active participants and have significant responsibilities that can’t be underestimated. However, because of the critical role of the CAM, this material is targeted at helping the CAM plan and manage assigned tasks.
The EVM process is essentially the same at all levels of the project or organization. Individual components of the EVM approach addresses work authorization through status reporting. Descriptions of cost accounts, authorized work packages, and planned work packages are emphasized because of their significance in the EVM approach in general and, specifically, because of the role they play in helping the CAM to be successful at the difficult job of balancing the many project management requirements and tasks.
The first EVM concept (then known as Cost Schedule Control System Criteria or C/SCSC) was introduced in the 1960s,