Tracking expenditure and revenue flows answers one of the burning ques­tions of every board: “How much are we actually investing in our projects?”. This question often crops up when we are talking about internal, IT or transforma­tive projects. The planning and follow-up model should be agreed with the finance di­rectorate and business units, so that project managers understand the pa­rameters for action, how they should monitor budgets and use of resources.

The PMO should issue clear instruc­tions on:

  1. Which cost elements to monitor, especially in terms of hours and pur­chasing.
  2. How to incorporate external su­ppliers: hours or deliverables.
  3. Which metrics to use: hours, cost, profit, earned value, progress etc.
  4. How frequently to measure each parameter.
  5. Standardized periods for reporting working hours.
  6. Measuring income and profit mar­gins.

In the following sections we analyze these topics in greater depth, highli­ghting their integration into ITM Plat­form whenever possible.

Cost of working hours

If you require oversight of the esti­mated hours, actual hours worked and their cost, the module of stan­dard costs and provider rates must be defined. Carrying out the definition in collaboration with the finance and HR departments will ensure that the project’s financial management is line with the organization’s policies and procedures. ITM Platform offers a module to establi­sh the standard cost from an abstract level down to the most detailed one:

      • General: hourly cost of any task. Useful in the conceptual phase of the project.
      • Internal and external: whether you use your own people or out­side contractors this allows you to define the hourly cost in a generic fashion.
      • Cost per professional profile: allows you to define the standard cost of the internal personnel for each profile, within different time­frame.
      • Provider rates: similarly, provider rates can be fed into the system, allowing you to compare costs per person and per provider.

Purchases and acquisitions

Purchasing is one of the key activities in any company. When managed properly it enables easier planning and follow up of cash flow. Normally, purchase management is in­corporated in the early stages of matu­rity, typically before monitoring working hours. Nonetheless, it is important that projects synchronize their purchasing with the organization’s financial mana­gement, so that both are in agreement. The purchase flow is a kind of workflow and it must be linked to a procedure pre­viously agreed with the financial and purchasing directorates, ensuring that each project’s purchasing is in line with purchasing practices in general.In addition, budget accounts grouping purchases must be used homoge­neously.


Similarly to purchasing, the classification and time management of the project revenues should be synchronized with the organization´s regular financial procedures. The system will then be able to create reliable margins and client profitablity.

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Calculator, Money, calculation, manMan-hours, also called person-hours, are the unit of measure that is used in project management to measure the efforts needed to complete a task.

1 man hour = work completed in an hour of uninterrupted effort by an average worker.

Calculating man hours is the basis for being able to measure the cost per project of each type of expert and his contribution to the result.

Start calculating the costs of all your resources by professional categories with ITM Platform


The total man hours per task is obtained by multiplying the number of people assigned to a task by the total time it takes to complete it.

Let's say, for example, that 15 workers at a metal plant and devote 10 workdays to complete an order of 800 product units.

Estimating 6 working hours per day, the total man hours is obtained from multiplying the following:

15 x 10 x 6 = 900 hours

Therefore, productivity is equal to 800/900 = 0.89 units per hour. As we know with the cost of man-hours, it is easy to calculate how the labor force contributes to the unit cost and the profitability of the product line.

In addition, this ratio can be taken as a starting point for measuring productivity improvements, introducing new processes and cutting costs.

However, in a more complex project it would also be necessary to consider that the cost of man-hours is variable, depending on the professional category to which it corresponds.

Not all team members cost the same

A requirement to be able to calculate the total labor cost of the project is to consider different hourly rates for each professional category. In an IT project, for example, it will not cost the same for one hour of a junior programmer as a senior one.

Therefore, when calculating the cost of the project from man hours, you must take into account that the multiplication of the cost must be factorized by each category:

Total cost = (CH1 x HH1) + … + (CHn x HHn)

Where CH1 is equal to the hourly cost of the professional category 1 and HH1 is the total of man hours estimated by the professional category 1.

Cost per project calculation with ITM Platform

ITM Platform allows you to calculate the costs of tasks and projects with man hours. For this you only have to define the values ​​of 3 variables:

  • The professional profiles of your organization

  • The fees associated with each professional profile

  • Standard costs, which will be calculated when a generic worker is assigned.

ITM Platform Standard costs: Global and Specific for Professional Categories

See in this tutorial how to define professional profiles, rates and standard costs in order to calculate the cost of all your tasks and projects.

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