Schedule (project management)

Schedule (project management)

In project management, a schedule consists of a list of a project's terminal elements with intended start and finish dates.

Creating a project schedule

Before a project schedule can be created, a project manager should typically have a work breakdown structure (WBS), an effort estimate for each task, and a resource list with availability for each resource. If these are not yet available, it may be possible to create something that looks like a schedule, but it will essentially be a work of fiction. They can be created using a consensus-driven estimation method like Wideband Delphi. The reason for this is that a schedule itself is an estimate: each date in the schedule is estimated, and if those dates do not have the buy-in of the people who are going to do the work, the schedule will be inaccurate.

In many industries, such as engineering and construction; the development and maintenance of the project schedule is the responsibility of a full time scheduler or team of schedulers, depending on the size of the project. And though the techniques of scheduling are well developed, they are inconsistently applied throughout industry. Standardization and promotion of scheduling best practices are being pursued by the Association for the Advancement of Cost Engineering (AACE), the Project Management Institute (PMI). In some large corporations, scheduling, as well as cost, estimating, and risk management are organized under the department of project controls.Fact|date=November 2007

Many project scheduling software products exist which can do much of the tedious work of calculating the schedule automatically, and plenty of books and tutorials dedicated to teaching people how to use them. However, before a project manager can use these tools, he or she should understand the concepts behind the WBS, dependencies, resource allocation, critical paths, Gantt charts and earned value. These are the real keys to planning a successful project.Fact|date=November 2007


Further reading

*cite book
author = Project Management Institute
title = A Guide to The Project Management Body of Knowledge
year = 2003
edition = 3rd ed.
publisher = Project Management Institute
id = ISBN 1-930699-45-X

*cite book
author = Ted Klastorin
title = Project Management: Tools and Trade-offs
year = 2003
edition = 3rd ed.
publisher = Wiley
id = ISBN 978-0471413844

*cite book
first = Gary
last = Heerkens
authorlink =
year = 2001
title = Project Management (The Briefcase Book Series)
publisher = McGraw-Hill
id = ISBN 0-07-137952-5

*cite book
first = Harold
last = Kerzner
year = 2003
title = Project Management: A Systems Approach to Planning, Scheduling, and Controlling
edition = 8th Ed.
publisher = Wiley
id = ISBN 0-471-22577-0

*cite book
first = Yamal
last = Chamoun
year = 2006
title = Professional Project Management, The Guide
edition = 1st.Edition
publisher = McGraw Hill
location = Monterrey, NL MEXICO
id = ISBN 970-10-5922-0

*cite book
first = James
last = Lewis
authorlink =
year = 2002
title = Fundamentals of Project Management
edition = 2nd ed.
publisher = American Management Association
id = ISBN 0-8144-7132-3

*cite book
author = Meredith, Jack R. and Mantel, Samuel J.
authorlink =
year = 2002
title = Project Management : A Managerial Approach
edition = 5th ed.
publisher = Wiley
id = ISBN 0-471-07323-7

*cite book
author = Lev Virine & Michael Trumper
year = 2007
title = [ Project Decisions: The Art and Science]
publisher = Management Concepts
id = ISBN 978-1567262179

*cite book
author = Murray B. Woolf, PMP
title = FASTER Construction Projects with CPM Scheduling
year = 2007
edition = 1st ed.
publisher = McGraw-Hill
id = ISBN 978-0-07-148660-0

ee also

*Project Management
*list of project management topics
*schedule (computer science)
*Project Plan
*List of project management software

External links

* [ How to Defend an Unpopular Schedule] (IEEE Software, Vol. 13, No. 3, May 1996)
* [ "Painless Software Schedules" by Joel Spolsky]
* [ "Four Steps to a Basic Project Schedule"]
* [ The International Center for Scheduling, Inc.]

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