It is easy to expedite the setup of a program in Deltek Cobra and ensure consistency across programs by setting up a template project. This approach will be particularly beneficial if your organization uses a corporate Resource Breakdown Structure (RBS), Rate structure, and Organizational Breakdown Structure.
It might be tempting to use a universal Fiscal Calendar, but I recommend using a separate calendar for each program, as many programs might have different needs and different reporting requirements. However, the biggest benefit will be the setup of the program preferences tab:
- Prevent loading of historical actual costs
- Prevent editing of historical time phased values
- Prevent negative ETC
Those are just a small sample set of the preferences that can be defined for a program. However, many of these preferences are best practices within Earned Value community. If your organization has a designated Cobra database admin (DBA) you can secure these preferences, preventing any controller/analyst from changing them. By implementing this practice you can ensure that you’re maximizing Deltek Cobra’s internal checks and balances to its fullest capability and maintain consistency across all programs.
This can be easily accomplished by using the first program you set up in Cobra as the template. If you’ve already been using Deltek Cobra then you can simply walk through the project set up process to define a template project. You will need to have setup all the required ancillary data:
- Fiscal Calendar
- Code Files
- Work Breakdown Structure
- Organizational Breakdown Structure
- Rate File
- Resource File and Resource Calculations
After that has been completed, and remember if you are using universal Resource, Rate and OBS files be sure those are attached to the template project, you can copy the settings to any new projects during the name new project process under “Copy defaults from project”:
Once that is done you can just step through each setting page to attach your calendar and WBS file, as well as to change the project dates, however, a majority of the detailed settings should be set from the template project.