What's involved in implementing FullCost?.... FullCost: How to implement it
FullCost can be implemented for just one department, and later evolve into an enterprisewide process. You'll pay only the marginal cost of additional seats.
It is best to apply FullCost to an entire department. This permits proper amortization of overhead and other support services. If time is limited, it's better to cut back on granularity and FMM Level than scope.
Target FMM Level
In keeping with the Levels of the Full-cost Maturity Model, you may start with a simple, high-level implementation and then add detail later. Lower FMM Levels take less time to implement and deliver fewer benefits, but can be implemented more quickly.
Then, more benefits can be realized in subsequent years as the process evolves. Each maturity level builds upon the last and all utilize exactly the same software, so your investment in FullCost is never lost.
Level of Effort
The initial implementation of FullCost (with the inherent learning curve in the leadership team) requires six to ten months. Participants (including the organization's executive) typically spend a day or two per week working on FullCost.
The project manager(s) typically spends half time throughout the process, and full time in the last month of preparation and during the negotiation process.
Of course, once the frameworks are set up, subsequent years become easy. Some deliverables are deleted, some added, and cost estimates are revised. In future years, the FullCost process may actually take LESS time than traditional budget processes.
FullCost may be done just prior to budget submission, to develop the following year's budget.
However, the process may also be done mid-year, reverse-engineering the current budget to clarify what's funded and what's not. While a mid-year process typically does not alter the total budget, the clarity it brings about what's funded matches clients' expectations to available resources, an important benefit.
The mid-year process has the added advantage of permitting a learning curve without the hard deadline of a budget due-date.
Of course, the mid-year process prepares the organization to do the following year's budget quite easily.
Don't we need to get our cost tracking in line before implementing FullCost?....
At a minimum, implementation required the FullCost license.
You'll need to designate an in-house budget director or project manager. In larger organizations, a team of project managers is formed, with a senior leader and an analyst facile with Excel.
With the detailed documentation, small organizations may implement the process with little or no formal training and consulting. However, we strongly encourage you to consider some training and/or consulting to ensure a smooth, effective process.
Training and Consulting
Training and consulting have numerous advantages:
- Implementation typically takes less elapsed time
- There's less risks of mistakes (wasting time on dead ends)
- The executive doesn't spend as much time and effort studying and leading the process
- Participants learn more
- The organization gets more benefits out of the process by better utilizing the system
There are various options for training and consulting, subject to affordability:
- Intensive one-week training at NDMA for your project manager(s) covering how to manage the project, use the software, and facilitate all leadership-team workshops.
- Series of just-in-time training sessions at NDMA for your project manager(s).
- Mixture of training for your project manager(s) and selected consultant facilitation of a few key workshops with your management team.
- Full consultant-led process, with a project plan customized to your needs. This includes leadership team training, and facilitation of each leadership-team workshop at every step of the planning process.
NDMA and certified implementors are happy to work with you to customize a program to your needs.
The first step is a telephone meeting with NDMA or a certified implementors to discuss your needs and options.