As the Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy’s (EERE) Recovery Act-funded projects were quickly initiated to provide an economic stimulus, EERE needed tools and processes to ensure uniform oversight across the portfolio of programs and technologies. As of the fall of 2010, an EERE-wide central repository had not been established for storing and analyzing project performance data for Research, Development, Demonstration and Deployment (RDD&D) awards. In addition to this lack of a central monitoring and reporting system, a reference hub where Technical Project Officers (TPOs) located in multiple offices could view guidance documents, access forms, or retrieve other relevant data did not exist.
Thus, IMPACT was developed by the Office of Project Management and Evaluation. In four short months, the Internet-based Monitoring and Performance Assessment Collaboration Tool (IMPACT) was created and providing reporting data to Department of Energy (DOE) senior-level staff. IMPACT was specifically designed as a central repository for monitoring reports, best practices, and other information related to the monitoring of Recovery Act projects awarded by EERE’s RDD&D programs.
TPOs submit review forms describing observed project performance as well as monitoring trip reports and Project Management Plans. Review forms provide details on a project’s performance in areas of budget, scope, and schedule, as well as the extent of any real or potential impacts to how these performance criteria are being met. Currently, more than 500 projects are in IMPACT, covering EERE technology areas such as biomass, vehicles, building technologies, solar, wind and water. Facilities projects and projects awarded by the Office of Weatherization and Intergovernmental Programs are monitored and tracked within specialized systems separate from IMPACT.
The information submitted by the TPOs into IMPACT is summarized into a quarterly report which is then presented to EERE Program Managers and often to senior EERE and DOE leadership. IMPACT also serves as a resource allowing EERE staff to share and research best practices and lessons learned that can improve project monitoring processes beyond the Recovery Act.
For more information on EERE’s Recovery Act monitoring program, please see the EERE Monitoring Factsheet: http://www1.eere.energy.gov/fieldoperations/pdfs/eere_monitoring_fact_sheet.pdf