Analysis of Alternatives (3 day course) EA Principals’ Analysis of Alternatives (AoA) Program is comprehensive and designed to be practical and for immediate use at work. AoA is the detailed analytical comparison of multiple options before committing resources to an objective or goal. AoA has been adopted by the Department of Defense (DoD) and Department of Homeland Security (DHS) as a methodology to ensure that cost effective acquisitions are made in a timely manner. The Government Accounting Office (GAO) has identified AoA as a critical factor in limiting cost and schedule growth. The course material not only helps comply with government acquisition decision standards, it includes the tools to craft successful decisions for business and technical situations when information is uncertain, incomplete, evolving and inconsistent. It helps guide in choosing what to do next to make a robust decision within the given resources. It incorporates risk, uncertainty, and stakeholder concerns into business, application and technical decisions. The training is facilitated by one of our practitioner consultants who have extensive experience in and knowledge of the essential techniques and methods, along with numerous real world examples to share.

Key Outcomes will yield immediate and long term ROI by:

  • Building AoA studies to comply with government acquisition requirements
  • Reducing the effect of unforeseen changes on decisions
  • Avoiding analysis paralysis by judging when analysis will actually help make a better decision
  • Building stakeholder buy-in
  • Ensuring all voices are heard and the process not hijacked
  • Exposing and managing risk and uncertainty
  • Building decisions that can be vetted and reused
  • Building robust decisions, decisions that still look good next month and next year.
  • Using AoA to close TOGAF gaps
  • Using AoA to make business and technical decisions

The Challenge: About one half of all business decisions fail. Two years later there is no evidence of half of all business decisions ever being made. All resources used to make and implement them were wasted! These failures are caused by many factors. For one, the GAO found that not considering sufficient alternatives and their associated risks during AoA studies tripled the odds of moderate to high cost and schedulegrowth. These growths often led to program reformulation or cancelation – wasted resources Learning Objectives:

  • How to perform an AoA study
  • How to build an AOA study report
  • How to get real ROI from AoA efforts
  • How to manage risk and uncertainty during AoA study
  • How to get the best from stakeholders.

Course materials: This course includes a single seat license for the Decision Dashboard. The Decision Dashboard is an Excel add-in that supports you making decisions with uncertain information. It produces AoA deliverables that can become the core of an AoA study report. Its use is covered in the course, but the methods do not rely on it. Additional licenses are available through EA Principals.

Course Duration & Format: This course is three days of interaction. It is designed to introduce the breadth and depth of AoA studies in practical ways, and take the learner through a series of modules to build the necessary skills. It includes theoretical presentation, case studies, references, tools and exercises to make the learning fun and to increase the maximum utility to the students and their organizations.


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