BN205 Analysis Of Occidental Engineering Case Study Essay


1. Demonstrate project leadership skills; identify and assess risk in designing and executing major projects;
2. Reflect on current project management ethics, research, theory and practice;
Analysis of the case study
o Identify the ethical issues that arise in this case study.
o Identify the potential consequences to the stakeholders of accepting this aggressive bid and risks involved in this project.
o Identify the potential breaches of the Project Management Institute (PMI) ethical standards by the Project team. Examine the PMI code and identify requirements that are relevant to this case study.
o Deborah and Wayne are attempting to resolve the ethical dilemma that they have. Having completed your ethical analysis recommendations as to how they should proceed.



This report intends to provide the analysis of Occidental Engineering case study. This engineering firm is concerned about an important project ‘Operation safe Skies’ of the Federal Aviation Agency. Wayne Davidson is assigned as a software engineer contract of building the prototype of air traffic control system for next generation. The company had bid less than the amount required for proper implementation of the project as it was important to them. As a result of simulation of the prototype, Wayne Davidson found a subtle error in memory allocation whose fixing would require time (Valavanis & Vachtsevanos, 2015). Deborah Shepherd, the project manager discusses with Wayne that they cannot miss the deadline of the prototype. The report would discuss the ethical implication of the situation while delivering this certified software which requires changes on deadline.

Analysis of the Case Study

Ethical Issues of the Case Study

The ethical issue is a situation where an individual or an organization need to choose between two alternatives on the basis of assessing their consequences. There are two ethical issues in this case study. The first ethical issue revolves around the aggressive bidding by the company in order to obtain the contract. This under budget project had an adverse effect on the employees and stakeholders of the company. This project required the members of the Operation safe skies project to work 18 hours per day and whole week to meet the deadline as the project was understaffed. The project was underfunded which could have affected the quality of the prototype. The second ethical issue in this project was that in order to meet the deadline the company decided to deliver the faulty prototype and software to the Federal Aviation agency (Kerzner & Kerzner, 2017). The project manager of the company Deborah Shepherd decided to deliver the prototype without making further changes to it in order to avoid fines and lose the remaining contract and jobs. The company was aware of the fact that the patch in the software can create a new bug in some other part of the program due to an error in the memory allocation. The company overlooked these ethical issues for the sake of the contract and jobs of people.

Potential Consequences

The potential consequences to the stakeholders while accepting this aggressive bid are that the project was made underfunded and understaffed. The Occidental engineering company was facing instable financial condition and thus to complete the project in less budget the stakeholders had to plan the project in a way that no resources should be wasted. The project was understaffed, and hence the employees had to work 18 hours per day for the whole week (McFarland, 2018). The stakeholders of the occidental engineering company were not profiting at all from this project in terms of money. The company takes the risk of delivering the faulty prototype and software. The potential consequences of this risk can be the safety and security of the forgotten aircraft. The Deborah Shepherd, the manager of the company, assures Wayne Davidson that they would provide an update to the prototype when the FAA would request for the change after performing their testing plan. The consequences of this consideration of the company could have been worse than what it came out as. The company overlooked the safety of the employee (Caron, 2013).

Potential Breaches of the Project Management Institute

The standards of the Project Management Institute (PMI) are constructed on various values of ethics and standards (Muller, 2017). In the context of the Occidental engineering case, the ethical situation is sending the deliverables which were faulty and could be a threat to the FAA. The identification of the potential breaches of the occidental engineering based on the standards of PMI can be explained as follows.


The major requirement of PMI ethical code is honesty of the company with the clients and their projects (Garel, 2013). In the case of Occidental Engineering, this ethical standard of PMI was violated as the truth about the project was not reported to FAA. The project manager was informed by Wayne about the error in the prototype, but they still delivered the prototype for the sake of their business and jobs of employees.


The responsibility was fulfilled by the team members, and they put their effort by working 18 hours a day. Wayne Davidson also played a responsible role by informing about the error in the prototype, but the project manager failed to fulfil her responsibility because she took the decision of delivering the faulty prototype. The project manager should have approached FAA regarding the concerns of prototype.


The ethical standard of PMI is concerned about taking decisions which are fair and true. The company gained the project of operation safe skies at very low bid, and it cannot be considered as a fair decision. This came out as the main reason for the understaffed and less budget for the project. The burden of work was too much for the workers. (Too & Weaver, 2014).

Recommendation for the Ethical Dilemma

It acne be recommended that the occidental engineering company could have approached the Federal Aviation Agency to inform them about the situation. The company could have taken recommendations from the FAA and request them for another deadline to ensure the quality of the deliverable. This could have been ethical process of dealing with the issues in this project. The major issue was in the initial stage of the project when the company gained the project at a low bid. They should have provided an adequate bidding amount in order to avoid the suffering of the employee who had to work for extra hours and days (Richardson, 2014). Wayne Davidson took a very appreciable decision when he came to know about the fault in the prototype, but then he was deviated by the decision of Shepherd. It would have been efficient if Wayne had stuck to his decision. Therefore it can be summarized that the company should not have delivered the erroneous project to FAA.


It can be concluded that this report was efficient in providing the sufficient analysis of the case of occidental engineering. It explains the steps taken by Occidental engineering company for gaining the project and decision of sending faulty prototype as unethical. The project manager does not meet the ethical standards of the PMI, and the initial call of Wayne can be considered as ethical. The report provides a nutshell of situation where the violation can be seen and discusses relevant recommendations.


Caron, F. (2013). Introduction to Project Risk. In Managing the Continuum: Certainty, Uncertainty, Unpredictability in Large Engineering Projects (pp. 51-56). Springer, Milano.

Garel, G. (2013). A history of project management models: From pre-models to the standard models. International Journal of Project Management, 31(5), 663-669.

Kerzner, H., & Kerzner, H. R. (2017). Project management: a systems approach to planning, scheduling, and controlling. John Wiley & Sons.

McFarland, M. (2018). Occidental Engineering Case Study: Part 1. Retrieved from

Muller, R. (2017). Project governance. Routledge.

Richardson, G. L. (2014). Project management theory and practice. Auerbach Publications.

Too, E. G., & Weaver, P. (2014). The management of project management: A conceptual framework for project governance. International Journal of Project Management, 32(8), 1382-1394.

Valavanis, K. P., & Vachtsevanos, G. J. (2015). Future of unmanned aviation. In Handbook of unmanned aerial vehicles(pp. 2993-3009). Springer, Dordrecht.

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