The latest guidance for the Integrated Program Management Report (IPMR) adds some reporting criteria to the Format 2 report. In the older Contract Performance Report (CPR) format, the Format 2 had to be run by the OBS element. This sometimes caused confusion on how to handle materials and major subcontractors. The result was that the Format 2 was often removed from requirements or not used because you could not easily see who was driving a particular variance without creating separate level 2 OBS elements for each of your subs. The updated format now requires the reporting organization to break out major subcontractors and materials.
In addition to breaking out the subs and materials to their own lines within the Format 2, you can also identify the costs associated with those elements as “non-add” elements since their costs will also be included in the lines above as associated with the OBS.
To take advantage of this new functionality you need to do a few steps in Deltek Cobra. First, you’ll need to create a code file in Cobra to use for the reporting. When setting this code up you’ll want to think about what lines you want to appear on your format 2. The key to this will be how major versus minor subs are defined. In this example we’re keeping it simple and identifying two major subs and general materials code:
Once the code file is set up, you’ll need to attach it to the resource file so you can use the entries. In Cobra, navigate to the Resource file you have assigned to your project and open up the Resource File Information dialog. Once the dialog is open click on the “Code Fields” tab and add the code file you just set up. We called the code file “Format 2 Codes” and assigned it to the first position on the Inter-Planet Shuttle resource file. Make the Code Field Type optional so you don’t have to enter this code on all your resources, we just want to use it for the resources we want to break out.
Once the Code File has been attached you’ll need to assign it to the resources. Open up the resource file and expand the resource breakdown structure so you can see your subcontractors.
You’ll notice that you have a new field in the table for the code file you added, titled with what ever you put into the “Prompt” column when you assigned the code. In our case we entered “Format 2”. Click on the cell for the resource you want to code, SUB1 in our example, and assign the “Sub 1” entry. You’ll do the same for all your subs and material lines you want to break out.
You’re almost done, but not quite yet. You’ve set up all the data, but you still need to tell Cobra to use this new field when you’re running the IPMR Format 2. This is done through the Project Information dialog. Open up the Project Information Dialog for the project with which you are working. In our case the venerable “Inter-Planet Shuttle” demo project in honor of the recent Orion spacecraft launch is opened. In the project information dialog click on the “Files” tab and you’ll see a new drop down field called “IPMR Format 2 Summary”. This is where you’ll tell Cobra that you want to use a code file to break lines out and which code file you have assigned to the resource file.
Once that is done you’re ready to run your new IPMR Format 2 report. When you run the report through the Report Wizard you’ll be prompted to tell Cobra how to handle the new information. (FYI – If you don’t see this dialog when you run this report you forgot the last step of assigning the Code file in the Project Information dialog…did that once or twice when I first started playing with this).
Within this dialog you can tell Cobra which lines to break out individually by checking the “Body” check box for each code entry to which it applies. If you don’t check “Body” for one of the codes, that resource won’t have a separate line showing up in the report. The other thing you do in this dialog is identify which resources costs you want to treat as a “non-add” in the report by checking the “Bottom-Line” option. When you select this box the line for the resource will be identified as a “non-add” in the report.
When you click “Finish” and run the report you’ll see new lines breaking out the values associated with your coding on the resource file as well as the flag telling you whether the line should be added to the bottom line or not.
So it takes a few steps to get setup but the good thing is once you’ve set it up you won’t have to go through those steps again. Just remember you’ll need to do all of these steps:
This new functionality in Deltek Cobra helps address a problem with the Format 2 that has been around for a while and by doing the assignments at the resource level makes this capability really easy to use once its setup. Even if you’re not required to produce this report contractually, with this new capability to break out the major subs it makes it worthwhile to run the report.