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GAO Cost Estimating and Assessment Guide - Best Practices for Developing and Managing Capital Program Costs, GAO-09-3SP

March 2009  Our Cost Assessment Guide was developed in order to establish a consistent methodology based on best practices to be used across the federal government for the development and management of its program cost estimates. In particular, it provides a detailed link between cost estimating and earned value management (EVM) — which is especially critical for setting realistic program baselines and managing risk. By design, managers and auditors alike should find this Guide to be a useful manual as they assess (1) the credibility of a program’s cost estimate for budget and decision-making purposes, and (2) the program’s status using EVM.

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