Material to be covered in Module I:
History, Definition, Job Plan:
History of VM – To introduce the concept of Value Analysis, its origin, evolvement over time (Miles, Bytheway, etc), and application in public & private sectors. To be able to identify and distinguish the terms or “jargon” of VM (e.g. VA, VE, etc.), the meaning of Value and other VM terms (e.g. function, worth, etc), and to introduce the VM Standard. To describe the structural content and sequential nature of the VM Job Plan and to emphasize the need to rigorously follow the steps of the job plan to improve value for the live project or case.
Function, FAST, Function-cost:
The prime objective of this section is to teach the student function analysis. The students should be taught how to define functions with the action verb - measurable noun technique. The students should be taught the reasons for defining function, e.g. removing paradigms from their thinking and forming a basis for focused brainstorming. In addition, Function Analysis System Technique (FAST) Diagramming must be taught. The students should have an understanding of the how –why –when methodology in FAST diagram construction. The students should learn the different types of FAST Diagrams and the application of each. In addition, the students should be taught the elements of a FAST diagram, e.g., higher order functions, basic functions, secondary functions, scope lines, etc. Finally, the students should be taught how to transition from the FAST Diagram to the next phase of the Job Plan.
The training objective is to ensure that participants understand the nature of creativity and the creative process. The instruction should include discussion of common creative traits. Discussion of the brainstorming rules, how to record ideas (not solutions or goals), and the use of idea numbering schemes is recommended. Discussion of creativity exercises that can stimulate creative ideas should also be addressed.
The training objective is to ensure that as possible future facilitators, the class understands group behaviors and can assist team members to optimize group discussions and activities. Topics to address should include selection of team members based on the needed disciplines to match the VA Study. A thorough discussion of personality types is recommended. Instruction should focus on the aspects of the team dynamics such as what constitutes a “team”, proper team size, and participant behaviors during the workshop, and matching the participant expertise to match the VM Project needs. Discuss how to motivate a team, how to handle negative individual behaviors and how to facilitate a team to achieve optimal participation from all members. The proper use of intervention techniques should also be a topic for instruction.
Since much of what is being done in Value Engineering workshops relates to cost, it is important for the course material to set a proper stage for how the subject of “Costs” should be handled during routine Value Engineering studies. Some key principles to be understood at the end of the training workshop include:
Basis of Cost Analysis:
The Value Engineering practitioner will take his cues from the setting in which costs are being considered. As an example, for construction costs on an early/concept design, the costs will probably be order of magnitude, with the primary purpose of cost analysis being to give the participants an approximate idea of how an alternative will affect the eventual design and construction cost outcome. The cost analyses are expected to be more refined in studies being performed later in the design stages, when more is known about the details. Similar principles apply to other disciplines, such as in manufacturing process analysis.
What ever the live project is for the workshop, it is usually best to use that as a setting for cost instruction. In construction, key subjects would include labor, materials, equipment, overhead and profit, mark-up’s on subcontractor costs, contingencies, etc. In manufacturing live projects, the key subjects might be raw materials, labor, materials, equipment time, learning curves, packaging, advertising, shipping, warehousing, etc. Due to the brevity of the cost portion of this training experience, the workshop will have to speak in cost “shorthand” in order to permit students to learn the basics.
Life Cycle Costing (LCC). It is critical for team leaders to become knowledgeable about life cycle costing. While VE team members may have little or no understanding of LCC, the team leader must know when it becomes a key consideration and must lead the way in performing the necessary, accurate analysis of the essential elements that will affect the outcome of the study. To this end, the subjects of LCC component costs (energy, maintenance, replacements, salvage, labor, etc.) should be introduced.
Time Value of Money.
The subject of time value of money is should be introduced. Usually this is in the form of simple examples relating to bank loans, etc. While Internal Rates of Return, Break-Even Analyses, etc., may be introduced, it will only be in a fashion to promote an interest by the participants in learning more about the subject. Students should come away from this block of instruction having been introduced to the subject of Present Worth Cost Analysis.
Evaluation and Implementation:
The training objective of the Evaluation Phase is to provide the participant with knowledge of the evaluation phase and the techniques available to evaluate the alternatives identified in the creativity phase. Steps in the evaluation process include, eliminate nonsense, group similar ideas, evaluate the ideas, and select the alternative(s) that offers the best value. The concept of determining the best value and the techniques used in the determination of that value will be taught. A variety of techniques should be touched upon to give the participant choices, based on the complexity of the decisions. Examples will be explained. The concept of having a positive attitude when searching for alternatives and possibilities should be taught at this time.
The overall objectives of a Value Engineering workshop are not achieved until the recommendations are implemented. Barriers to implementation will be identified and approaches/techniques to overcome the barriers will be discussed. Development of an implementation plan that includes clearly defined actions (who and when) to accomplishing the plan will be taught. The concept of a “champion” for the recommendations should be promoted to help ensure implementation. The workshop results will be presented to those who can aid in the implementation and the workshop should teach the skills needed to develop the presentation and to present the material.