CMM and Project Management - Procurement Management

  This Key Process Area (KPA) is called Software Subcontract Management by CMM/CMMI but it aligns with the Procurement Management knowledge area of the PMBOK®. The objective is to select vendors who are best able to meet the projects needs in terms of work, product, and budget. Keep in mind that while the PMBOK® paints Procurement Management activities with a broad brush in order to cover all industries, CMM/CMMI are only interested in activities that pertain to software subcontractors, or software vendors. The Procurement Management plan must cover any procurement. As with the other KPAs, Software Subcontract Management is organized into goals, commitments, abilities, activities, measurements, and verifications.


Goals


The 4 goals of this KPA are:


Qualified software subcontractors are selected by the project manager. This goal is supported in full by the Conduct Procurements process.

The customer and subcontractor agree to their commitments to each other. The contract for the delivery of goods and/or services for consideration is the agreement. The contract (procurement contract award) is the output of the conduct procurements process.

The customer and subcontractor maintain ongoing communications. There is nothing in the Procurement Management processes which specifically addresses this goal; however the scheduling of regular review meetings sourcing-force.com, such as performance reviews will meet this goal.

The customer tracks the software subcontractor's results against commitments. Work performance information, performance reports, and performance reviews are all inputs of the administer procurements process and serve to track results against commitments.

Commitment to Perform

There are 2 commitments: that the project follows a written organizational policy for managing the software subcontractor and that a subcontract manager is designated to be responsible for establishing and managing the software contract. The policy is the responsibility of the organization subcontracting the work and you, or someone you assign to the role, is the subcontract manager. Your Procurement Management plan is not an organizational policy but will take the place of one for the project you are managing.


Ability to Perform


You will demonstrate an ability to perform the activities called for by your plan by assigning adequate resources and funding to the job of selecting and managing the subcontractor. You are the first resource assigned to the project and any organizational policies, standards, vendor lists, and your Procurement Management plan are also resources. Any managers or other individuals that you assign to the work of selecting or managing the subcontractor must be adequately trained in that work and given orientation on the technical aspects of the contract. Your Human Resources Management plan will describe how this is done. Resources assigned to your project by outside organizations such as a Procurement group should be trained by that group.


Activities Performed


Define and plan the work according to the documented procedure and the subcontracted work is described in a Statement of Work (SOW), which is derived from the project SOW. The documented procedure in this case will be your Procurement Management plan. The detailed activities include make or buy decisions, and choosing vendor selection criteria. The SOW should also be reviewed and agree to by resources working on subcontractor selection and management.

Select the subcontractor based on their ability to perform the work in accordance with a documented procedure. This is the Conduct Procurements process described in your Procurement Management plan.

The contract between the customer and the subcontractor is used to manage the subcontract. This activity includes the specification of the work products the subcontractor must deliver, criteria they must meet, how changes will be made, acceptance criteria, and how subcontractor performance will be monitored. This is all standard stuff covered off in the Conduct Procurements and Administer Procurements processes.

The customer reviews and approves the software subcontractor's development plan. This will be a deliverable covered in the SOW and the approval process and conditions for approval will also be described there.

The subcontractor's plan is used to track the subcontractor's activities. The tracking should be done at status review meetings you conduct with the subcontractor's project manager.

Changes to the subcontractor's SOW and contract are decided upon according to a documented procedure. This procedure will be the Contract Change Control System described in the Administer Procurements process.

The customer conducts periodic status/coordination reviews with the subcontractor's management. These are called Procurement Performance Reviews by the PMBOK® and are part of the Administer Procurements process. These should be spelled out in the SOW and should be held at scheduled intervals (e.g. once a week) to review the status of the subcontractor's project. This activity goes on to specify that deviations from the plan are addressed and that conflicts are addressed. Corrective actions are part of the subcontractor PM's responsibilities. Deviations not addressed by that PM would result in conflict and conflicts are resolved by the Claims Administration tool described in Administer Procurements. The best way of meeting these needs is to ensure that the subcontractor's PM manages your project in accordance with project management best practices (which call for corrective action to be taken when results deviate from the plan). You also should ensure that the PM maintains an action register or issue log to capture any issues you have with the project.

Periodic technical reviews are held with the subcontractor. This activity verifies that the product being produced meets your needs and any quality targets set for it. This activity is described in the Administer Procurements process as Inspections and Audits. Interpret this to mean reviews of Functional Specifications and Detail Design Documents produced by the subcontractor where the requirements captured in your Business Requirements Document are translated into functions, and code.

Formal reviews of the subcontractor's work products are conducted at selected milestones. These formal reviews are what I refer to as Gate Review meetings conducted at key milestones throughout the project. The subcontractor may have their own Gate Review meetings with you as a key stakeholder, or your Gate Review meetings may be sufficient on their own. In either case the deliverables planned for the completed sub-project phase should be reviewed for completeness and plans, resources, risks, etc. of the upcoming sub-project phase should also be reviewed.

The customer's Software Quality Assurance group (SQA) monitors the subcontractor's SQA activities according to a documented procedure. This is beyond the scope of your project, unless your project is also implementing an SQA group and processes. Your project can contribute to the activity by ensuring that the contract, SOW, and your Quality Management plan specify the SQA activities required of the subcontractor and performing audits to ensure those activities are done.

Your Configuration Management group monitors the configuration activities of the subcontractor. The SOW used to define the subcontractor's responsibilities should include CM activities and these should also be captured in the subcontractor's project plans. Reviews and audits need to include verification that the subcontractor performs their CM activities as per their plans.

You should conduct acceptance testing of the subcontractor's deliverables according to a documented procedure. Inspections of deliverables such as specifications, designs, and code should be governed by the Administer Procurements process in your plan. These should include testing of the software (User Acceptance Testing).

The subcontractor's performance is evaluated periodically and the evaluation reviewed with the subcontractor. This is described in the Tools & Techniques section of the Administer Procurements process (Procurement Performance Reviews).

Measurement and Analysis

There is only one measurement: measurements are taken and used to determine the status of the Procurement Management activities. These measurements are taken as part of the oversight of the project management activities of the overall project. They will be provided for in your project plans.


Verifying Implementation


Your Procurement Management activities should be reviewed with senior management periodically. This can happen at Gate Review meetings and/or at Steering Committee meetings, and meetings with your sponsor. If you are managing a project and have a project manager reporting to you on a software sub-project, you need to meet with them periodically to review their procurement management activities. This could be part of the agenda for weekly status review meetings, or require meetings specifically for the purpose. Finally, the SQA group must review and/or audit the tools and activities used for Procurement Management. This will only be possible if your organization has an SQA group. Without an SQA group, your organization may have a PMO or PMC in which case that group would be responsible for oversight of all areas of project management, including procurement management, and would conduct project audits.


8 Computing Solutions at the Forefront of the New Economy


In the past few years, we have seen new and exciting technologies that promise a more decentralized and secure economy. In this article, I have included some of the main players in this developing market.

1. Golem

Golem is an open-source, decentralized computer network.

How Golem Works

The Golem Network is a market for computing power, where users can earn from 'renting' their machines or by developing and selling software.

Within the network, users renting computing power are called "providers" and users acquiring power are called "requestors." The requestors use Golem for various purposes, including graphics processing, data analysis, microservices, and machine learning.

Benefits

The work division means that tasks can be completed simultaneously, thus enabling shorter timelines for projects.
The cost of doing business is less than cloud-based services.
Users can be instantly paid for their work with the Golem Network Token (GTM), a token on Ethereum blockchain.
Golem is building their whole stack from bottom to top, an approach that typically results in great UXs.
2. iExec
IExec is a decentralized marketplace for cloud services focused on blockchain-based distributed applications and affordable smart-contract.com, high-performance computing.

iExecc Dapps

Unlike Golem, iExec (since the release of its v1) allows anyone to develop and run applications.

The iExecc Dapp store contains a variety of apps. Considering the experienced team behind iExec, their reason to choose the Dapp pathway is that there's probably less competition here. After establishing themselves in the decentralized Dapp market, iExec plans on expanding into decentralized computing tasks.

RLC

RLC is short for 'Runs on Lots of Computers,' and it's the native token of iExec. There are currently 87 million of the ERC-20 token in circulation.

3. Ethereum

Ethereum is an open-source, blockchain-based platform that enables users to build decentralized applications. The computations are performed in an isolated environment called Ethereum Virtual Machine that resides in all node connected on the network. The product of the computations is stored on the blockchain.

Features of the Ethereum Blockchain

Ether

Ether is the currency of the Ethereum blockchain. The cryptocurrencies ETH (Ethereum Hard Fork) and ETC (Ethereum Classic) are two values of Ether.

Smart Contract

The EVM is capable of executing a "smart contact," an algorithm that stores and automatically executes terms of agreements. Both parties involved in a transaction agree to the terms written in the smart contract.

Bitcoin vs Ethereum Platform

The Bitcoin blockchain focuses on a set of pre-defined operations, such as tracking Bitcoin transactions, while Ethereum allows users to run code of any complexity, making it suitable for any decentralized application, including cryptocurrencies.

Consensus Mechanism

Computation on the Ethereum network cost more and take longer than a standard computer because of the parallelization of computing. To maintain consensus, all participants must agree over the order of all transactions that have taken place, whether they have taken part in the transaction or not.

Ethereum nodes store the most recent state of each smart contract, along with all of the Ether transactions. As EVM is an isolated system, the code runs without access to the network or the filesystem. So, there's limited accessibility even among smart contracts.

4. Hyperledger Fabric

Hosted by the Linux Foundation, Hyperledger Fabric is an open source distributed ledger technology (DLT) having a modular and configurable architecture that can be employed at the enterprise level in various industries.

Features of Hyperledger Fabric

Privacy, Development, and Performance

The Fabric platform enables permissioned, private operation where the operators know each other and can be bound by rules, such as a legal agreement.
Fabric supports smart contracts written in common languages, such as Java and Go, so no additional training is required to create the smart contracts.
Performance is enhanced because, unlike Ethereum, only parties taking part in the transaction have to reach consensus.
Fabric Nodes
Also unlike Ethereum, Fabric nodes have different roles and tasks in the consensus process. The nodes can be orderers, clients, or peers.

Native Currency

Fabric does not have a native cryptocurrency. However, chaincode can be used to develop a native currency.

5. Tendermint

Tendermint has a blockchain consensus engine, known as Tendermint Core, and a generic application interface, known as Application Blockchain Interface (ABCI). The software enables secure and consistent replication of an application on multiple machines.

Tendermint Core

The Byzantine Fault Tolerant (BFT) middleware of the consensus engine can securely replicate state transition machinery. BFT middleware can tolerate one-third of failures, including hacking attacks.

Tendermint had the goal of offering a more secure and efficient consensus algorithm than Bitcoin's PoW (Proof of Work). The software formed the basis of important research by consensus protocol Casper's team: a fault-tolerant chain, such as Tendermint, can make good decisions about who produces a block, while a less reliable chain results in a chicken and egg problem.

The software is user-friendly, replicates applications written in any language, and has multiple applications.

6. Lisk

Lisk is a decentralized and distributed platform that allows users to develop apps and support them with customized blockchains.

Lisk Features

Developers can use Lisk's JavaScript-based software development kit (SDK) to build both the backend and the frontend of their app. However, Lisk doesn't offer protection against non-deterministic behavior. Also, the platform can't prevent infinite loops and measure memory consumption.

Lisk's Consensus Mechanism

Lisk asks developers to follow "rules" for contracts to ensure consensus. For instance, they ask developers to "don't use Math.random()."

7. Corda (V 3.0)

Corda is an open source, distributed ledger platform (DLT) catering to the financial industry.

Features of Corda

Corda's network is a permissioned network - it's not open to all node operators. The nodes run on Corda and CoDapps and communicate point-to-point with each other.

The 'doorman' of each network sets the admission rules for nodes that want to join the network. Like Fabric, Corda offers more privacy because of its fine-grained access control to records, and better permeance because of limiting consensus to the involved parties.

On Corda, contract developers also add legal prose to their contract. This feature consolidates the contract by legitimizing it with the associated legal prose. The platform does not have a native token.

8. Rootstock

Rootstock (RSK) is an open source smart-contract platform that is built on the Bitcoin blockchain.

Rootstock Features

Smart Contracts

RSK is enabling smart contract on the Bitcoin network. It uses the Turing-complete Rootstock Virtual Machine (RVM) for smart contracts. A 2-way peg allows users to directly send Bitcoin onto the Rootstock chain. The RSK coins can be used with smart contracts and Dapps. RSK contracts replicate 'Proof-of-Existence,' which is used to prove the existence of a document (or property right).

Security

The RSK blockchain has merge-mining, giving it the same level of security as Bitcoin in terms of settlement finality and double-spending.


Purchasing Strategy Tips For Your eBay Business

Here are some purchasing strategy tips for your eBay business:

1. Come up with a plan for purchasing several times a year. You might plan to make strategic purchases on a quarterly basis, or twice a year. It is important to set up an annual budget that allocates money for seasonal purchases. Not only do you need to have resources available for making purchases, but this also helps you to know when you are likely to have an influx of income so you can plan to meet your personal needs.

2. Knowing when your busy times will be also helps you allocate space in your storage areas for accommodating your inventory. Many sellers have to clean or restore the items that they will then resell. If you deal with larger items acheteurs.tv, you may have to rent storage space or set up areas in your warehouse when you are likely to be fully stocked.

3. Get in the habit of purchasing in advance for seasons and events coming up later in the year. Some of it might depend on weather, if you deal with goods that are hotter or cooler. There are also plenty of holidays that are geared to acquiring gifts of decorations. A smart seller is eager to pitch his or her wares when a large audience is likely to be eager to purchase.

4. Once you have determined how frequently you want to sell, come up with a plan. If you plan to purchase on a quarterly basis, come up with a review of the previous quarter. Your quarter review should include the value of your inventory, your gross sales revenue, and the total number of items you ended up selling below your desired price.

5. If you sell many different items in various categories, simplify your planning. Focus on one major category at a time. You will give yourself less work to do, and you will be able to isolate successful categories from failing ones.

To be a successful eBay seller, you must have a systematic purchasing strategy. I hope the tips above will give you some head start to setup your own purchasing strategy.


Rising energy prices are a concern for every manufacturing plant in Houston and across the globe. Managers are being forced to look for energy savings through two major tactics--reducing energy consumption and/or adopting better energy purchasing strategies and switching energy sources. As early as a 2005 survey of manufacturers, 98% of those surveyed said that energy prices have already impacted their business. That impact represents a substantial amount of money.

Plant managers can take the first tactic, to reduce energy consumption, in two basic areas: the manufacturing process and facilities/ buildings. However, many managers remain skeptical of modifying their manufacturing processes purely in the interests of reducing energy consumption. No one wants to sacrifice productivity and quality to take savings that may give questionable bottom-line results. So, the dual pressures to reduce energy consumption, while not disturbing output, have forced managers into a difficult position: "Reduce your energy costs" and "Keep producing at a high ROI."

The other tactic for realizing energy savings, adopting best practices for energy purchasing strategies and utilizing information technologies to inform better decisions, requires no compromise in the manufacturing process. However, the energy markets and the technologies available in the market, due to complexity, require some expertise in order to manage the risks and opportunities available. As a result, many companies are opting for the services of energy consultants who have the expertise to deal with all the complexities of energy markets and available technologies.

I talked with Richard L. Zdunkewicz, Director of Sales of LEGACY Energy Management Solutions, a full-service energy advisory firm, headquartered in Houston, about what types of solutions are available. LEGACY provides its clients with energy markets information, energy risk management services, energy procurement services, energy information management solutions and strategic energy planning services.

Mr. Zdunkewicz tells me that to "truly provide the most value to clients a consultant must understand their unique energy issues in the context of their businesses and their operations. There is not a 'one size that fits all' solution."

LEGACY has assisted many clients in identifying multiple energy price and contract solutions and determining the resulting risk exposures across numerous scenarios. LEGACY or other consultants can:

Integrate historical and ongoing load data to create an accurate depiction of the load profile at the meter, plant and enterprise levels
Assess risk tolerance, budget goals and constraints
Model energy usage variations across company's facilities
Simulate forward energy market prices using state-of-the-art technologies
Work with management to define existing usage and commodity price risks and develop an appropriate risk management strategy and execution plan
Provide ongoing risk simulations and energy related earnings at risk analyses to help the company "manage" its energy portfolio
Utilize an experienced legal team with a unique focus on end-use client needs
Suggest technologies that will assist the management and operational team in better understanding and managing their loads
Develop strategies to realize financial benefits from load curtailment to the extent such strategies are compatible with the operating strategy of the company
The current energy crisis is just one more in a series of challenges that have recently befallen American manufacturers, particularly our many small manufacturing companies. These companies already face rising costs in many area, particularly health care, pensions, and regulatory requirements, as well as new competition because of new import laws allowing duty free imports from competitors - all which deplete key resources and profits from their operations. On top of these challenges, energy's rising cost affects manufacturers' human, capital, and raw materials.


AENCO Blockchain One Stop Shop

Aenco will be combining its solutions platform and core financing ecosystem with the wider healthcare technology community, through the AEN token, as the key ecosystem building block and extensions across all its service and community deliveries.

AENCO - Blockchain based Healthcare Technology Financial Solutions Platform

Aenco is the world's FIRST Blockchain based Healthcare Technology Financial Solutions Platform that

leverages healthcare technologies with institutional financing, prime brokerage and smart capital solutions under one umbrella. It is a "One stop shop" for the delivery of cutting edge institutional financing, prime brokerage and core smart capital solutions for the HealthTech industry, as well as a research and collaboration hub for healthcare companies and projects involved in the field of blockchain development vortex.network. It will combine its solutions platform and core financial ecosystem with the wider healthcare technology community. empowers emerging and innovative healthcare companies with digital financing capabilities, so that they can focus on generating high potential and impactful technologies that can transform our world and day to day lives. Supported by the group's planned regulated infrastructure (including the establishment of a commercial bank within the group) and presence in major jurisdictions including Europe, Hong Kong, and the United States, through which Aenco will effectively deliver its solutions, generating an increasing and rapidly evolving ecosystem.

3 KEY PILLARS OF AENCO

1. IB Solutions AEN Connect - Smart Wallet and Aenco Portal;AENX - Exchange platform for tokens; AEN Connect Escrow and Custody; ICO Gateway, Subscription and Integrity Program; Research Coverage, Community Discussion and News Distribution Portal; UX/UI Application for multi-service HealthTech utility sharing platform.

2. Prime Solutions AEN Connect - Cryptocurrency and cross-asset collateralized financing platform; Pooling and order matching platform for financing providers and borrowers using cryptocurrencies and major Fiat currencies as eligible collateral; Integration with Aenco SmartCap Solutions to facilitate clearing of fiat currencies; Margining and clearing system for collateral financing and structured over-the counter products issuance; Client custodial and asset segregation system; Regulatory and financial reporting protocols; Integration with AENX and external APIs systems for execution and settlement services.

3. SmartCap Solutions - AEN Token transaction integration system with core financial modules; AEN Connect smart wallet and "proof of stake" integration system with core financial modules; Integration system with AENX and Aenco Prime Platform to support clearing services.

AENCO PLATFORM towards Regulations and Beyond

They adhere the rules that Regulators around the world had issued, and these body of regulators may have adopted different attitudes towards ICOs, have all generally moved towards increasing clarity of the necessary regulatory framework governing the requirements of token issuers with the view to provide greater protection to market participants and better disclosures. To address the regulatory aspects, Aenco is expanding into new markets, while building upon long-standing traditional business infrastructure, to set up regulated presence across several major jurisdictions.

They believe that it is a matter of time that ICO will be adopted as a mainstream alternative financing tool for growth companies and that global regulatory framework will rise to meet the new challenges generated from such. They believe in building a sustainable servicing platform for emerging growth companies and entrepreneurs, the group is establishing a global regulated platform within major continents and markets.

In the landscape of HealthTech based start-up companies and medical innovations, the successful pairing of sound science and robust financing is paramount for potential growth and discovery. However, due to the capital intensive nature of the business, the ability to capture steady and impactful sources of funding for emerging biotechnology and medical technology companies are intrinsically difficult.

Aenco's platform seeks to be at the forefront of this sensational technological and societal development, while also capitalizing on its long standing track record of regulated activities and dedication towards adoption of both digital assets, and blockchain based applications as applied to evolving financial services.

Aenco believes that digital financing such as ICO is fast becoming "mainstream" and in association of this development, many aspects of traditional banking can be adopted, evolved and applied for the blockchain

community. Aenco will be the FIRST to embrace such digital financial integration for servicing the HealthTech sector and its significant community.

Aenco's goal is to establish a global full-service blockchain based financial solutions platform, while operating within a globally accredited regulatory framework in preemption of increasing regulatory requirements, through employing a decentralized blockchain based financial ecosystem that amalgamates traditional and modern methods of capital market services. Such services are to be powered and capitalized upon the inhouse developed core utility token "AEN" as a medium of exchange that is exchangeable with accepted major crypto (BTC, ETH); Proof of stake holders of AEN shall be eligible to enjoy pre-defined utility benefits across the Aenco ecosystem.

AENCO CORE TECHNOLOGY

1. AEN CONNECT: Smart Wallet with "Wealth App" Functionalities

2. AENCO Ico Gateway and Platform

3. AENCO Custodial Wallet with Enhanced Security

4. In-House Developed Trading Exchange ("AENX")

5. Unifying Aen Connect Application and API Across Multi Service Platforms

6. Aenco Decentralized Prime Brokerage Platform ("AENCO PRIME SOLUTIONS")

AEN TOKEN HOLDER BENEFITS

1. Indicative Financial Utility Benefits and Access

- Collateralized lending, Reduced fee, Increase and Decreased interest, Alternative investment Discounted investments, Access to ICO Research Portal, Enhance security, Enhanced flexibility and some more.

2. Medical Utility Benefits From HealthTech Partners

- Robotic Surgery, Surgical procedures and technology, Specialized facilities and services and a whole lot more.

AEN TOKEN SALE

The token sale is currently on private sale phase.

They are not accepting contributions from residents of USA, Samoa, China, and OFAC sanctioned countries. For Hong Kong based contributors, you must qualify and provide wealth proof as a "Professional Investor" under the Hong Kong SFC Guidance and Rules. They require you to go through our Sign Up process. To acquire AEN tokens, they also require you to go through our KYC Verfication. A first investor bonus for the private sale and the pre-sale period. AEN tokens will be allocated to you upon confirmation of contribution. The distribution date of the token will be after the ICO. The exact date will be announced soon. Depending on the stage of contribution, there will be lock up restrictions on the withdrawal.


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