Chapter 6 Project Time Management

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key terms, definitions, and processes for project time management

Activity

A component of work performed during the course of a project.

Activity List [I/O]

A documented tabulation of schedule activities that shows the activity description, activity identifier, and sufficiently detailed scope of work description so project team members understand what work is to be performed.

Activity-on-arrow (AOA)

A network diagramming method in which activities are shown on arrows and connected at nodes to show the sequence of activities. Also know ADM, AOL.

Activity-on-node (AON)

A network diagramming method in which activities are shown on the boxes or circles of the network diagram and connect via arrows. Also known as PDM

Backward Pass

The calculation of late finish dates and late start dates for the uncompleted portions of all schedule activities. Determined by working backwards through the schedule network logic from the project's end date. See also schedule network analysis.

Bar Chart [T&T]

A chart that shows a time relationship between the activities of the project; also commonly called a Gantt chart.

Burst

The separation (or divergence) of activities on a network diagram from a central node.

Calendar Unit

The smallest unit of time used in scheduling a project.

Control Schedule [process]

The process of monitoring the status of the project and product scope and managing changes to the scope baseline.

Crashing [t&t]

A specific type of project schedule compression technique performed by taking action to decrease the total project schedule duration after analyzing a number of alternatives to determine how to get the maximum schedule duration compression for the least additional cost. Typical approaches for crashing a schedule include reducing schedule activity durations and increasing the assignment of resources on schedule activities. (Fast tracking and schedule compression)

Critical Chain Method [T&T]

A schedule network analysis technique that modifies the project schedule to account for limited resources. It emphasizes resources flexibility and leveling.

Critical Path

Generally, but not always, the sequence of schedule activities that determines the duration of project. It is the longest path through the project. (see also CPM)

Critical Path Method CPM [T&T]

A schedule network analysis technique used to determine the amount of scheduling flexibility (amount of float) on various logical network paths in the project schedule network, and to determine the minimum total project duration. Early start and finish dates are calculated by means of a forward pass, starting from a specified completion date, which sometimes is the project early finish date determined during the forward pass calculation. See also critical path.

Define Activities [process]

The process of identifying the specific actions to be performed to produce the project deliverables.

Dependency

(see logical relationship)

Develop Schedule [process]

The process of analyzing activities sequence, durations, resource requirements, and schedule constraints to create the project schedule

Discretionary Dependency

A dependency in which the Project Manager (or other decision maker) can choose to allow it to be a dependency or not, depending upon the needs of the project.

Dummy Activities

A zero duration activity used in the arrow diagramming method (ADM) to show a logical relationship; represented graphically with an arrow having a dashed line

Duration (DU or DUR)

The total number of work periods (not including holidays or other nonworking periods) required to complete a schedule activity or work breakdown structure component. Usually expressed as workdays or workweeks. Sometimes incorrectly equated with elapsed time. Contrast with effort.

Early Finish Date (EF)

In the critical path method, the earliest possible point in time on which the uncompleted portions of a schedule activity (or the project) can finish, based on the schedule network logic, the data date, and any schedule constraints. Early finish dates can change as the project progresses and as changes are made to the project management plan.

Early Start Date (ES)

In the critical path method, the earliest possible point in time on which the uncompleted portions of a schedule activity (or the project) can start, based on the schedule network logic, the data date, and any schedule constraints. Early start dates can change as the project progresses and as changes are made to the project management plan.

Effort

The number of labor units required to complete a schedule activity or work breakdown structure component. Usually expressed as staff hours, staff days, or staff weeks. Contrast with duration.

Estimate [I/O]

A quantitative assessment of the likely amount or outcome. Usually applied to project costs, resources, effort, and durations and is usually preceded by a modifier (i.e preliminary, conceptual, feasibility, order-of-magnitude, definitive). It should always include some indication of accuracy (e.g. +/- x percent). See also budget and cost.

Estimate Activity Durations [process]

The process of approximating the number of work periods needed to complete individual activities with estimated resources.

Estimate Activity Resources [process]

The process of estimating the type and quantities of material, people, equipment or supplies required to perform each activity.

External Dependency

A dependency that lies outside the control of the project team

Fast Tracking [t&t]

A specific project schedule compression technique that changes network logic to overlap phases that would normally be done in sequence, such as the design phase and construction phase, or to perform schedule activities in parallel. See also crashing and schedule compression.

Finish-to-Finish Dependency (FF)

The logical relationship where completion of work of the successor activity cannot finish until the completion of work of the predecessor activity. See also logical relationship.

Finish-to-Start Dependency (FS)

The logical relationship where initiation of work of the successor activity depends upon the completion of work of the predecessor activity. See also logical relationship.

Float

See also slack, total float, free float.

Forward Pass

The calculation of the early start and early finish dates for the uncompleted portions of all network activities. See also schedule network analysis and backward pass.

Free Slack (Free Float)

The amount of time that a schedule activity can be delayed without delaying the early start date of any immediately following schedule activities. See also total float.

Gantt Chart [t&t]

A graphic display of schedule-related information. In the typical bar chart, schedule activities or work breakdown structure components are listed down the left side of the chart, dates are shown across the top, and activity durations are shown as date-placed horizontal bars.

Imposed Date

A fixed date imposed on a schedule activity or schedule milestone

Lag [t&t]

A modification of a logical relationship that directs a delay in the successor activity. For example, in a finish-to-start dependency with a ten-day lag, the successor activity cannot start until ten days after the predecessor activity has finished. See also lead.

Late Finish Date (LF)

In the critical path method, the latest possible point in time that a schedule activity may be completed based upon the schedule network logic, the project completion date, and any constraint assigned to the schedule activities without violating a schedule constraint or delaying the project completion date. The late finish dates are determined during the backward pass calculation of the project schedule network.

Late Start Date (LS)

In the critical path method, the latest possible point in time that a schedule activity may be completed based upon the schedule network logic, the project completion date, and any constraint assigned to the schedule activities without violating a schedule constraint or delaying the project completion date. The late start dates are determined during the backward pass calculation of the project schedule network.

Lead [t&t]

A modification of a logical relationship that allows an acceleration of the successor activity. For example, in a finish-to-start dependency with a ten-day lead, the successor activity can start ten days before the predecessor activity has finished. A negative lead is equivalent to a positive lag. See also lag.

Logical Relationship

A dependency between two project schedule activities, or between a project schedule activity and a schedule milestone. The four possible types of logical relationship are: Finish-to-Start, Finish-to-Finish; Start-to-Start; and Start-to-Finish. See also precedence relationship.

Mandatory Dependency

A required dependency on a project; cannot be ignored.

Master Schedule [T&T]

A summary-level project schedule that identifies the major deliverables and WBS components and key schedule milestones. See also Milestone Schedule.

Merge

A coming together (convergence) of activities on a network diagram.

Milestone Schedule [T&T]

A summary-level project schedule that identifies the major schedule milestones. See also Master Schedule.

Network Diagram

A schematic of logical relationships that make up the flow of activities on the project; always drawn from left to right.

Network Logic

The collection of schedule activity dependencies that makes up a project schedule network diagram.

Network Path

Any continuous series of schedule activities connected with logical relationships in a project schedule network diagram.

Node

One of the defining points of a schedule network; a junction point joined to some or all of the other dependency lines.

Path Divergence

Extending or generating parallel schedule network paths from the same node in a project schedule network diagram. It is also characterized by a schedule activity with more than one successor activity.

PERT Weighted Average

An estimated technique used to take the pessimistic, optimistic, and realistic (most likely) estimates to achieve a cumulative estimate.

Precedence Diagramming Method (PDM)

A network diagramming process in which activities are presented in boxes.

Precedence Relationship

A logical relationship between activities as depicted in a precedence diagram.

Predecessor Activity

An schedule activity that determines when its successor activity can begin

Program Evaluation and Review Technique (PERT)

A technique for estimating that applies a weighted average of optimistic, pessimistic, and most likely estimates when there is uncertainty with the individual activity estimates. It emphasizes task order and rigid scheduling.

Project Calendar

A calendar of working days or shifts that establishes those dates on which schedule activities are worked and nonworking days that determine those dates on which schedule activities are idle. Typically defines holidays, weekends, and shift hours. See also resource calendar

Project Network Diagram

A view of the logical relationship (sequencing) of project activities.

Project Schedule [I/O]

The planned dates for performing schedule activities and the planned dates for meeting schedule milestones.

Project Schedule Network Diagram [i/o]

Any schematic display of the logical relationships among the project schedule activities. Always drawn from left to right to reflect project chronology.

Project Time Management [KA]

Project Time Management includes the processes required to manage the timely completion of a project.

Resource Calendar

A Calendar of working days and nonworking days that determines those dates on which each specific resource is idle or can be active. Typically defines resource specific holidays and resource availability periods. See also project calendar.

Rolling Wave Planning [t&t]

A form of progressive elaboration planning where the work to be accomplished in the near term is planned in detail at a low level of WBS, while the work far in the future is planned at a relatively high level of the WBS, but the detailed planning of the work to be performed within another one or two periods in the near future is done as work is being completed during the current period.

Schedule

See Project Schedule and also Schedule Model

Schedule Baseline

A specific version of the schedule model used to compare actual results to the plan to determine if preventive or corrective action is needed to meet the project objectives.

Schedule Compression [t&t]

Shortening the project schedule duration without reducing the project scope. See also crashing and fast tracking

Schedule Management Plan [i/o]

The document that establishes criteria and the activities for developing and controlling the project schedule. It is contained in, or is a subsidiary plan of, the project management plan.

Schedule Milestone

A major event in the project schedule; typically involves the start or completion of a major component of the project.

Schedule Model

A model used in schedule network analysis to create the project schedule.

Schedule Network Analysis [t&t]

A technique used to determine early and late start dates and early and late finish dates of project activities.

Schedule Finish Date (SF)

The point in time that work was scheduled to finish on a schedule activity. The schedule finish date is normally within the range of dates delimited by the early finish date and the late finish date. It may reflect resources leveling scarce resources. Sometimes called planned start date.

Schedule Start Date (SS)

The point in time that work was scheduled to start on a schedule activity. The schedule start date is normally within the range of dates delimited by the early start date and the late start date. It may reflect resource leveling of scarce resources. Sometimes called planned start date.

Sequence Activities [process]

The process of identifying and documenting relationships among the project activities.

Slack (Float)

See also total float and free float

Start-to-finish Dependency (SF)

The logical relationship where completion of the successor schedule activity is dependent upon the initiation of the predecessor schedule activity. See also logical relationship.

Start-to-start Dependency (SS)

The logical relationship where initiation of the successor schedule activity is depends upon the initiation of the predecessor schedule activity. See also logical relationship.

Subnetwork

A subdivision (fragment) of a project schedule network diagram, usually representing a subproject or a work package. Often used to illustrate or study some potential or proposed schedule condition, such as changes in preferential schedule logic or project scope.

Successor Activity

The schedule activity that follows a predecessor activity, as determined by their logical relationship.

Summary Activity

A group of related schedule activities aggregated at some summary level, and displayed/reported as a single activity at that summary level. See also subproject and subnetwork.

Target Completion Date (TC)

A requested project completion date that can be a constraint for the project.

Target Finish Date (TF)

The date that the project (or activity) is anticipated to be completed.

Target Schedule

A preliminary schedule that can be used during initial stages Planning; could differ from the baseline schedule at the conclusion of Planning.

Target Start Date (TS)

The planned start date of the project or activity.

Task

An activity to be completed on the project.

Three Point Estimate [t&t]

An analytical technique that uses three cost or duration estimates to represent the optimistic, most likely, and pessimistic scenarios. This technique is applied to improve the accuracy of the estimates of cost or duration when the underlying activity or cost component is uncertain.

Total Float (TF)

LS - ES, or LF - EF; The total amount of time that a schedule activity may be delayed from its early start date without delaying the project finish date, or violating a schedule constraint. Calculated using the critical path method technique and determining the difference between the early finish dates and late finish dates. See also free float.

Total Slack (Total Float)

The amount of time an activity can slip (be delayed) from its early start date without delaying the overall finish date.

Variance

A quantifiable deviation, departure, or divergence away form a known baseline or expected value.

Work Performance Information [I/O]

Information and data, on the status of the project schedule activities being performed to accomplish the project work, collect as part of the direct and mange project execution processes. Information includes: status of deliverables; implementation status for change requests, corrective actions, preventive actions, and defect repairs, forecasted estimates to complete; reported percent of work physically completed; achieved value of technical performance measures; start and finish dates of schedule activities.

Arrow Diagramming Method (ADM)

sometimes called activity-on-arrow or activity-on-line is an older method. the circle or box connects the activities. A dummy is also used in this diagramming type where needed.

Activity on Line (AOL)

same as Arrow Diagramming Method

GERT (Graphical Evaluation Review Technique)

is a diagramming method that uses feedback loops or multiple passes. Exam tip: When this is used as answer it is usually "noise"

Analogous Estimating [t&t]

Also known as Top Down Estimating. An estimating technique that uses the values of parameters, such as scope, cost, budget, and duration or measures of scale such as size, weight, and complexity from a previous, similar activity as the basis for estimating the same parameter or measure for a future activity.

Bottom-up Estimating [t&t]

A method of estimating a component of work. The work is decomposed into more detail. An estimate is prepared of what is needed to meet the requirements of each of the lower, more detailed pieces of work, and these estimates are then aggregated into a total quantity for the component of work the accuracy of bottom-up estimating is driven by the size & complexity of the work; identified at the lower levels; (not bottoms-up estimating) - possible ?

Parametric Estimating [t&t]

An estimating technique that uses statistical relationship between historical data and other variables to calculate an estimate for activity parameters such as scope, cost, budget, and duration.

Monte Carlo Estimating [t&t]

Also known as computerized estimating. It is a technique that computes or iterates, the project cost or project schedule many times using input values selected at random from probability distributions of possible costs or durations, to calculate a distribution or possible total project cost or completion dates.

Project Slack

is the amount of time something can be delayed without delaying the published finish date.

Logic Bar Chart

is a common chart used in project management also called a Gantt chart.

Summary Schedule

shows an aggregate or rolled up view of the various activities at a summary level.

PERT Formula

(O + P + (4*R))/6 O is Optimistic, P is Pessimistic, and R is Realistic(Most Likely) or
te = (to + 4tr +tp)/6 where t is Time, E is estimated; PERT expected activity duration (EAD)

Variance of an activity ~ standard deviation squared

is the measure of how spread out a distribution is
((P-O)/6)squared

Standard Deviation of an activity (SD)

is the measurement of variation within a distribution (P-O)/6

Range of an activity duration

EAD +/- SD

Resource Breakdown Structure

Resources broken down by category (i.e. 1st lvl - construction proj; 2nd lvl - people, mtls; 3rd (bottom) lvl - electrician, carpenters, wire and lumber

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