Value Management Techniques, Methods and Tools

There are numerous techniques, the ones mostly used are detailed below:

Function Analysis System Technique (FAST Diagram)

Ishikawa Technique (Fishbone Analysis)

Lessons Learned Technique

Techniques

Brainstorming of Mind Showering

Idea generation that focuses on creation of ideas by volume (no judging).

Allows a large volume of ideas to be generated in a short period of time. Also strives to ensure all parties are involved – no ideas are discounted initially (later evaluation and filtering is undertaken).

Cost Benefit Analysis

Used to analyse the costs of implementing something compared to the benefits to be achieved. Assists business case submissions.

Often used in Value Management on procedure or process type projects. Can be combined with other tools e.g. process mapping, option selection.

Criteria Weighting Technique

A tool used to assist in option selection. Uses functional drivers (or objectives) that are weighted for scoring options against.

Enables option selection and alternatives to be reviewed in order to support decisions being made.

Excursion/Metaphors

A tool used to take delegates on an outward and return journey (possible excursion). Moves delegates away from a problem to somewhere where creativity flourishes. The return journey often releases such creativity and ideas that would not normally be evident.

Very effective in bringing creativity to the forefront. Often used as a precursor to brainstorming or other idea generation tools.

Function Analysis System Technique (FAST)

Identification of functions (at the heart of Value Management) of products, processes, projects or services. Focussed on client needs and wants.

A technique used to develop a graphical representation showing the logical relationships between the functions of a project, product, process or service based on the questions “How” and “Why”.

Determines what functions are delivered i.e. what they do or must do, not what they are (avoiding solution mode). The FAST diagram works by asking how the functions (primary and secondary) relate to each other by ask How and Why questions to check the logic works. Later costs are added to functions to assist in identifying any Value Management mismatches or areas of over-engineering.

Lessons Learned Technique

A technique to explore factually what was successful or may have had issues / problems on a project.

Uses a “deep-dive” approach to explore what, where, when, for whom the success or issue occurred. This is then followed by root cause analysis and review of consequences with the aim of learning lessons and developing action plans to ensure success is achieved in the future ie. on the next applicable project.

Objectives Hierarchy

  1. Diagrammatic process for identifying objectives in a hierarchical manner. Often used in conjunction with functions.

Assists in focussing input where the key objectives are as the diagram is constructed in descending order.

Issues Generation and Analysis

A way of eliciting many issues connected with a problem or opportunity. Team members write down their issues on post-it notes, and they are displayed on the wall under appropriate categories or groupings. e.g. Requirements, Constraints, Problems, Opportunities, Assumptions, Uncertainties, Risks.

Voting of the top 10 important issues follows. Actions to address issued then explored.

Pair Wise Comparison

Enables ranking of items by means of comparisons between all possible pairs of items.

Pairwise comparison generally is any process of comparing entities in pairs to judge which of each entity is preferred, or has a greater amount of some quantitative property, or whether or not the two entities are identical. The method of pairwise comparison is used in Value Management to assist option selection and allow alternatives to be reviewed in order to support decision-making being made.

Pareto Analysis

Often called the 20/80 rule. Aim to concentrate on the top 20% of items that often have biggest (often 80%) impact.

Focuses on those key items or activities that can achieve the optimum benefit.

Process Mapping

Uses flow charts to review steps in processes.

Identifies processes in a diagrammatic format in a step-by-step manner. Often used in manufacturing of system type processes. Used to identify omissions or superfluous items in the process for correction.

Risk Analysis

A structured approach to identifying risks that could affect project, product, process or service success. Risks are identified, evaluated (in terms of cost, time, other impact) and robust action planning applied.

Often used in parallel with Value Management as there are genuine links. Can assist decision-making and option selection.

SCAMPER

Used as a checklist to develop ideas by applying separate verbs to chosen ideas singly or together with others. E.g. Combine, Amend, Modify, Put to other use, Expand, Reverse/Reduce.

This could help with moving an idea from a creative thought to a more practical use, expand on the concept behind ideas, find different ways of expressing the idea, provoke new ideas, etc.

Stakeholder Analysis

Identifies those key stakeholders (groups of individuals) with an influence or interest in a project, product, process or service.

Can assist in focussing attention where the priorities are required i.e. satisfaction of key stakeholder interests and needs.

SWOT Analysis

Identifies strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats. A tool used in many organisations to assist in focussing activities where required and minimise those items that can impact negatively.

Assists in understanding strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats that can impact on an organisation, individual, project, product or process.

Value Analysis

Structured team-based approach to identifying functional requirements of projects, products, processes or services.

The systematic and critical assessment by an organisation of every feature of a product or project to ensure that its cost is no greater than is necessary to carry out its functions. It assists in achieving optimisation of value to a client or customer.

5 W's & H

A technique for exploring problems which provokes further depth of questioning about the dimensions framing the problem or opportunity.

Who – e.g. is responsible?
Why – e.g. is the end date important?
What – e.g. what would happen if the scheme were delayed?
When – e.g. must the work start?
Where – e.g. might the problem occur?
How – e.g. might we do this seemingly impossible thing?

There are five Value Management Core Methods

The appropriate method should be selected for the circumstances

There are currently five Value Management core methods and tools being:

  1. Value Analysis / Value Engineering;
  2. Function Analysis;
  3. Function Cost;
  4. Functional Performance Specification; and
  5. Design to Cost / Design to Objectives.

See BS EN12973 for details on these and other methods and tools, for example, Benefits Management and Lean Management, that you can also use, appropriate to the circumstances under consideration.

The appropriate method should be selected for the circumstances