Glossary of Project Management 2

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The act of formally receiving or acknowledging something and regarding it as being true, sound, suitable, or complete.
See accept.
Acceptance Criteria
Those criteria, including performance requirements and essential conditions, which must be met before project deliverables are accepted.
Acquire Project Team [Process]
The process of obtaining the human resources needed to complete the project.
A component of work performed during the course of a project. See also schedule activity.
Activity Attributes [Output/Input]
Multiple attributes associated with each schedule activity that can be included within the activity list. Activity attributes include activity codes, predecessor activities, successor activities, logical relationships, leads and lags, resource requirements, unposed dates, constraints, and assumptions.
Activity Code
One or more numerical or text values that identify characteristics of the work or in some way categorize the schedule activity that allows filtering and ordering of activities within reports.
Activity Definition [Process]
The process of identifying the specific schedule activities that need to be performed to produce the various project deliverables.
Activity Description (AD)
A short phrase or label for each schedule activity used in conjunction with an activity identifier to differentiate that project schedule activity from other schedule activities. The activity description normally describes the scope of work of the schedule activity.
Activity Duration
The time in calendar units between the start and Finish of a schedule activity. See also actual durcrtiatt original duration, and remaining duration.
Activity Duration Estimating [Process]
The process of estimating the number of work periods that will be needed to complete individual schedule activities.
Activity Identifier
A short unique numeric or text identification assigned to each schedule activity to differentiate that project activity* from other activities. Typically unique within any one project schedule network diagram.
Activity, List [Output/Input]
A documented tabulation of schedule activities that shows the activity description, activity identifier, and a sufficiently detailed scope of work description so project team members understand what work is to be performed.
Activity-on-Arrovv (AOA)
See arrow diagramming method. Activity-on-Node (AON). See precedence diagramming method.
Activity Resource Estimating [Process]
The process of estimating the types and quantities of resources required to perform each schedule activity.
Activity Sequencing [Process]
The process of identifying and documenting dependencies among schedule activities.
Actual Cost (AC)
Total costs actually incurred and recorded in accomplishing work performed during a given time period for a schedule activity or work breakdown structure component. Actual cost can sometimes be direct labor hours alone, direct costs alone, or all costs including indirect costs. Also referred to as the actual cost of work performed (ACWP). See also earned value management and earned value technique.
Actual Cost of Work Performed (ACWP)
See actual cost (AC).
Actual Duration
The time in calendar units between the actual start date of the schedule activity and either the data date of the project schedule if the schedule activity is in progress or the actual finish date iFthe schedule activity is complete.
Actual Finish Date (AF)
The point in time that work actually ended on a schedule activity. (Note: In some application areas, the schedule activity is considered "finished" when work is "substantially complete.")
Actual Start Date (AS)
The point in time that work actually started on a schedule activity.
Analogous Estimating [Technique]
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. It is frequently used to estimate a parameter when there is a limited amount of detailed information about the project (e.g., in the early phases). Analogous estimating is a form of expert judgment. Analogous estimating is most reliable when the previous activities are similar in fact and not just in appearance, and the project team members preparing the estimates have the needed expertise.
Application Area
A category of projects that have common components significant in such projects, but are not needed or present in all projects. Application areas are usually defined in terms of either the product (i.e., by similar technologies or production methods) or the type of customer (i.e., internal versus external, government versus commercial) or industry sector (i.e., utilities, automotive, aerospace, information technologies). Application areas can overlap.
Apportioned Effort (AE)
Effort applied to project work that is not readily divisible into discrete efforts for that work, but which is related in direct proportion to measurable discrete work efforts. Contrast with discrete effort.
See approve.
The act of formally confirming, sanctioning, ratifying, or agreeing to something.
Approved Change Request [Output/Input]
A change request that has been processed through the integrated change control process and approved. Contrast with requested change.
The graphic presentation of a schedule activity in the arrow diagramming method or a logical relationship between schedule activities in the precedence diagramming method.
Arrow Diagramming Method (ADM [Technique]
A schedule network diagramming technique in which schedule activities are represented by arrows. The tail of the arrow represents the start, and the head represents the finish of the schedule activity. (The length of the amlow does not represent the expected duration of the schedule activity.) Schedule activities are connected at points called nodes (usually drawn as small circles) to illustrate the sequence in which the schedule activities are expected to be performed. See also precedence diagramming method.
As-of Date
See data date.
Assumptions [Output/Input]
Assumptions are factors that, for planning purposes, are considered to be true, real, or certain without proof or demonstration. Assumptions affect all aspects of project planning, and are part of the progressive elaboration of the project. Project teams frequently identify, document, and validate assumptions as part of their planning process. Assumptions generally involve a degree of risk.
Assumptions Analysis [Technique]
A technique that explores the accuracy of assumptions and identifies risks to the project from inaccuracy, inconsistency, or incompleteness of assumptions.
The right to apply project resources*, expend fluids, make decisions, or give approvals.
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. The end date may be calculated in a forward pass or set by the customer or sponsor. See also schedule network analysis.
Bar Chart [Tool]
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, dales are shown across the top, and activity durations are shown as date-placed horizontal bars. Also called a Gantt chart.
The approved time phased plan (for a project, a work breakdown structure component, a work package, or a schedule activity), plus or minus approved project scope, cost, schedule, and technical changes. Generally refers to the current baseline, but may refer to the original or some other baseline. Usually used with a modifier (e.g., cost baseline, schedule baseline, performance measurement baseline, technical baseline). See also performance measurement baseline.
Baseline Finish Date
The finish date of a schedule activity in the approved schedule baseline. Sec also scheduled finish elate.
Baseline Start Date
The start date of a schedule activity in the approved schedule baseline. See also scheduled strut date.
Bill of Materials (BOM)
A documented formal hierarchical tabulation of the physical assemblies, subassemblies, and components needed to fabricate a product.
Bottom-up Estimating [Technique]
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 and complexity of the work identified at the lower levels. Generally smaller work scopes increase the accuracy of the estimates.
Brainstorming [Technique]
A general data gathering and creativity technique that can be used to identify risks, ideas, or solutions to issues by using a group of team members or subject-matter experts. Typically, a brainstorming session is structured so that each participant's ideas are recorded for later analysis.
The approved estimate for the project or any work breakdown structure component or any schedule activity. See also estimate.
Budget at Completion (BAC)
The sum of all the budgets established for the work to be performed on a project or a work breakdown structure component or a schedule activity. The total planned value for the project.
Budgeted Cost of Work Performed (BCWP)
See earned value (Elf). Budgeted Cost of Work Scheduled (BCWS). See planned value (P V). Buffer. See reserve.
The acquirer of products, services, or results for an organization.
Calendar Unit
The smallest unit of time used in scheduling the project, Calendar units are generally in hours, days, or weeks, but can also be in quarter years, months, shifts, or even in minutes.
Change Control
Identifying, documenting, approving or rejecting, and controlling changes to the project baselines *.
Change Control Board (CCB)
A formally constituted group of stakeholders responsible for reviewing, evaluating, approving, delaying, or rejecting changes to the project, with all decisions and recommendations being recorded.
Change Control System [Tool]
A collection of formal documented procedures that define how project deliverables and documentation will be controlled, changed, and approved. In most application areas the change control system is a subset of the configuration management system.
Change Request
Requests to expand or reduce the project scope, modify policies, processes, plans, or procedures, modify costs or budgets, or revise schedules. Requests for a change can be direct or indirect, externally or internally initiated, and legally or contractually mandated or optional. Only formally documented requested changes are processed and only approved change requests are implemented.
Chart of Accounts [Tool]
Any numbering system used to monitor project costs* by category (e.g., labor, supplies, materials, and equipment). The project chart of accounts is usually based upon the corporate chart of accounts of the primary performing organization. Contrast with code of accounts.
See project charter.
Checklist [Outputllnput]
Items listed together for convenience of comparison, or to ensure the actions associated with them are managed appropriately and not forgotten. An example is a list of items to be inspected that is created during quality planning and applied during quality control.
A request, demand, or assertion of rights by a seller against a buyer, or vice versa, for consideration, compensation, or payment under the terms of a legally binding contract, such as for a disputed change.
Close Project [Process]
The process of finalizing all activities across all of the project process groups to formally close the project or phase.
Closing Processes [Process Group]
Those processes performed to formally terminate all activities of a project or phase, and transfer the completed product to others or close a cancelled project.
Code of Accounts [Tool]
Any numbering system used to uniquely identify each component of the work breakdown structure. Contrast with chart of accounts.
Co-location [Technique]
An organizational placement strategy where the project team members are physically located close to one another in order to improve communication, working relationships, and productivity.
Common Cause
A source of variation that is inherent in the system and predictable. On a control chart, it appears as part of the random process variation (i.e., variation from a process that would be considered normal or not unusual), and is indicated by a random pattern of points within the control limits. Also referred to as random cause. Contrast with special cause.
A process through which information is exchanged among persons using a common system of symbols, signs, or behaviors.
Communication Management Plan [Output/Input]
The document that describes: the communications needs and expectations for the project; how and in what format information will be communicated; when and where each communication will be made; and who is responsible for providing each type of communication. A communication management plan can be formal or informal, highly detailed or broadly framed, based on the requirements of the project stakeholders. The communication management plan is contained in, or is a subsidiary plan of, the project management plan.
Communications Planning [Process]
The process of determining the information and communications needs of the project stakeholders: who they are, what is their level of interest and influence on the project, who needs what information, when will they need it, and how it will be given to them.
Something given or received, a payment or recompense, usually something monetary or in kind for products, services, or results provided or received.
A constituent part, element, or piece of a complex whole.
Configuration Management System [Tool]
A subsystem of the overall project management system. It is a collection of formal documented procedures used to apply technical and administrative direction and surveillance to: identify and document the functional and physical characteristics of a product, result, service, or component; control any changes to such characteristics; record and report each change and its implementation status; and support the audit of the products, results, or components to verify conformance to requirements. It includes the documentation, tracking systems, and defined approval levels necessary for authorizing and controlling changes. In most application areas, the configuration management system includes the change control system.
Constraint [Input]
The state, quality, or sense of being restricted to a given course of action or inaction. An applicable restriction or limitation, either internal or external to the project, that will affect the performance of the project or a process. For example. a schedule constraint is any limitation or restraint placed on the project schedule that affects when a schedule activity can be scheduled and is usually in the form of fixed imposed dates. A cost constraint is any limitation or restraint placed on the project budget such as fiends available over time. A project resource constraint is any limitation or restraint placed on resource usage, such as what resource skills or disciplines are available and the amount of a given resource available during a specified time frame.
See reserve. Contingency Allowance. See reserve.
Contingency Reserve [Output/Input]
The amount of,junds, budget, or time needed above the estimate to reduce the risk of overruns of project objectives to a level acceptable to the organization.
Contract [Output/Input]
A contract is a mutually binding agreement that obligates the seller to provide the specified product or service or result and obligates the bui'er to pay for it.
Contract Administration [Process]
The process of managing the contract and the relationship between the buyer and seller, reviewing and documenting how a seller is performing or has performed to establish required corrective actions and provide a basis for future relationships with the seller, managing contract related changes and, when appropriate, managing the contractual relationship with the outside buyer of the project.
Contract Closure [Process]
The process of completing and settling the contract, including resolution of any open items and closing each contract.
Contract Management Plan [Output/Input]
The document that describes how a specific contract will be administered and can include items such as required documentation delivery and performance requirements. A contract management plan can be formal or informal, highly detailed or broadly framed, based on the requirements in the contract, Each contract management plan is a subsidiary plan of the project management plan.
Contract Statement of Work (SOW) [Output/Input]
A narrative description of products, services, or results to be supplied under contract.
Contract Work Breakdown Structure (CWBS) [Output/Input]
A portion of the work breakdown structure for the project developed and maintained by a seller contracting to provide a subproject or project component.
Control [Technique]
Comparing actual performance with planned performance, analyzing variances, assessing trends to effect process improvements, evaluating possible alternatives, and recommending appropriate corrective action as needed.
Control Account (CA) [Tool]
A management control point where scope, budget (resource plans), actual cost, and schedule are integrated and compared to earned value for perfomiance measurement. Control accounts are placed at selected management points (specific components at selected levels) of the work breakdown structure. Each control account may include one or more work packages, but each work package may be associated with only one control account. Each control account is associated with a specific single organizational component in the organizational breakdown structure (Ol3S). Previously called a cost account. See also work package.
Control Account Plan (CAP) [Tool]
A plan for all the work and effort to be performed in a control account. Each CAP has a definitive statement of work, schedule, and time-phased budget. Previously called a Cost Account Plan.
Control Chart [Tool]
A graphic display of process data over time and against established control limits, and that has a centerline that assists in detecting a trend of plotted values toward either control limit.
Control Limits
The area composed of three standard deviations on either side of the centerline, or mean, of a normal distribution of data plotted on a control chart that reflects the expected variation in the data. See also specification limits.
See control.
Corrective Action
Documented direction for executing the project work to bring expected future performance of the project work in line with the project management plan.
The monetary value or price of a project activity* or component that includes the monetary worth of the resources required to perform and complete the activity or component, or to produce the component. A specific cost can be composed of a combination of cost components including direct labor hours, other direct costs, indirect labor hours, other indirect costs, and purchased price. (However, in the earned value management methodology, in some instances, the term cost can represent only labor hours without conversion to monetary worth.) See also actual cost and estimate.
Cost Baseline
See baseline.
Cost Budgeting [Process]
The process of aggregating the estimated costs of individual activities or work packages to establish a cost baseline.
Cost Control [Process]
The process of influencing the factors that create variances, and controlling changes to the project budget.
Cost Estimating [Process]
The process of developing an approximation of the cost of the resources needed to complete project activities*.
Cost Management Plan [Output/Input]
The document that sets out the format and establishes the activities and criteria for planning, structuring, and controlling the project costs. A cost management plan can be formal or informal, highly detailed or broadly framed, based on the requirements of the project stakeholders. The cost management plan is contained in, or is a subsidiary plan, of the project management plan.
Cost of Quality (COQ) [Technique]
Determining the costs incurred to ensure qualitt. Prevention and appraisal costs (cost of conformance) include costs for quality planning, quality control (QC), and quality assurance to ensure compliance to requirements (i.e., training, QC systems, etc.). Failure costs (cost of non-conformance) include costs to rework products, components, or processes that are non-compliant, costs of warranty work and waste, and loss of reputation.
Cost Performance Index (CPI)
A measure of cost efficiency on a project. It is the ratio of earned value (EV) to actual costs (AC). CPI = EV divided by AC. A value equal to or greater than one indicates a favorable condition and a value less than one indicates an unfavorable condition.
Cost-Plus-Fee (CPF)
A type of cost reimbursable contract where the buyer reimburses the seller for seller's allowable costs for performing the contract work and seller also receives a fee calculated as an agreed upon percentage of the costs. The fee varies with the actual cost.
Cost-Plus-Fixed-Fee (CPFF) Contract
A type of cost-reimbursable contract where the buyer reimburses the seller for the seller's allowable costs (allowable costs are defined by the contract) plus a fixed amount of profit (fee).
Cost-Plus-Incentive-Fee (CPIF) Contract
A type of cost-reimbursable contract where the barer reimburses the seller for the seller's allowable costs (allowable costs are defined by the contract), and the seller earns its profit if it meets defined performance criteria.
Cost-Plus-Percentage of Cost (CPPC)
See cost-plus-fee.
Cost-Reimbursable Contract
A type of contract involving payment (reimbursement) by the buyer to the seller for the seller's actual costs, plus a fee typically representing seller's profit. Costs are usually classified as direct costs or indirect costs. Direct costs are costs incurred for the exclusive benefit of the project, such as salaries of firll-time project staff. Indirect costs, also called overhead and general and administrative cost, are costs allocated to the project by the performing organization as a cost of doing business, such as salaries of management indirectly involved in the project, and cost of electric utilities for the office. Indirect costs are usually calculated as a percentage of direct costs. Cost-reimbursable contracts often include incentive clauses where, if the seller meets or exceeds selected project objectives, such as schedule targets or total cost, then the seller receives from the buyer an incentive or bonus payment.
Cost Variance (CV)
A measure of cost performance on a project. It is the algebraic difference between earned value (EV) and actual cost (AC). CV = EV minus AC. A positive value indicates a favorable condition and a negative value indicates an unfavorable condition.
Crashing [Technique]
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. See schedule compression and see also fast tracking.
Create WBS (Work Breakdown Structure) [Process]
The process of subdividing the major project deliverables and project work into smaller, more manageable components
Standards, rules, or tests on which a judgment or decision can be based, or by which a product, service, result, or process can be evaluated.
Critical Activity
Any schedule activity on a critical path in a project schedule. Most commonly determined by using the critical path method. Although some activities are "critical," in the dictionary sense, without being on the critical path, this meaning is seldom used in the project context.
Critical Chain Method [Technique]
A schedule network analysis technique* that modifies the project schedule to account for limited resources. The critical chain method mixes deterministic and probabilistic approaches to schedule network analysis.
Critical Path [Output/Input]
Generally, but not always, the sequence of schedule activities that determines the duration of the project. Generally, it is the longest path through the project. I-lowever, a critical path can end, as an example, on a schedule milestone that is in the middle of the project schedule and that has a finish-no-later-than imposed date schedule constraint. See also critical path method.
Critical Path Method (CPM) [Technique]
A schedule network analysis technique* used to determine the amount of scheduling flexibility (the 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, using a specified start date. Late start and finish dates* are calculated by means of a backward pass, starting from a specified completion date, which sometimes is the project earl) finish date determined during the forward pass calculation.
Current Finish Date
The current estimate of the point in time when a schedule activity will be completed, where the estimate reflects any reported work progress. See also scheduled finish date and baseline finish elate.
Current Start Date
The current estimate of the point in time when a schedule activity will begin, where the estimate reflects any reported work progress. See also scheduled start date and baseline start date.
The person or organization that will use the project's product or service or result. (See also user).
Data Date (-DD)
The date up to or through which the project's reporting system has provided actual status and accomplishments. In some reporting systems, the status information for the data date is included in the past and in some systems the status information is in the future. Also called as-of date and time-non' date.
A term representing the day, month, and year of a calendar, and, in some instances, the time of day.
Decision Tree Analysis [Technique]
The decision tree is a diagram that describes a decision under consideration and the implications of choosing one or another of the available alternatives. It is used when some future scenarios or outcomes of actions are uncertain. It incorporates probabilities and the costs or rewards of each logical path of events and future decisions, and uses expected monetary value analysis to help the organization identify the relative values of alternate actions. See also expected monetary value anal ys i.s.
See decomposition.
Decomposition [Technique]
A planning technique that subdivides the project scope and project deliverables into smaller, more manageable components, until the project work associated with accomplishing the project scope and providing the deliverables is defined in sufficient detail to support executing, monitoring, and controlling the work.
An imperfection or deficiency in a project component where that component does not meet its requirements or specifications and needs to be either repaired or replaced.
Defect Repair
Formally documented identification of a defect in a project component with a recommendation to either repair the defect or completely replace the component.
Deliverable [Outputllnput]
Any unique and verifiable product, result, or capability to perform a service that must be produced to complete a process, phase, or project. Often used more narrowly in reference to an external deliverable, which is a deliverable that is subject to approval by the project sponsor or customer. See also product, service, and result.
Delphi Technique [Technique]
An information gathering technique used as a way to reach a consensus of experts on a subject. Experts on the subject participate in this technique anonymously. A facilitator uses a questionnaire to solicit ideas about the important project points related to the subject. The responses are summarized and are then re-circulated to the experts for further comment. Consensus may be reached in a few rounds of this process. The Delphi technique helps reduce bias in the data and keeps any one person from having undue influence on the outcome.
See logical relationship.
Design Review [Technique]
A management technique used for evaluating a proposed design to ensure that the design of the system or product meets the customer requirements, or to assure that the design will perform successfully, can be produced, and can be maintained.
Develop Project Charter [Process]
The process of developing the project charter that formally authorizes a project.
Develop Project Management Plan [Process]
The process of documenting the actions necessary to define, prepare, integrate, and coordinate all subsidiary plans into a project management plan.
Develop Preliminary Project Scope Statement [Process]
The process of developing the preliminary project scope statement that provides a high level scope narrative.
Develop Project Team [Process]
The process of improving the competencies and interaction of team members to enhance project performance.
Direct and Manage Project Execution [Process]
The process of executing the work defined in the project management plain to achieve the project's requirements defined in the project scope statement.
A field of work requiring specific knowledge and that has a set of rules governing work conduct (e.g., mechanical engineering, computer programming, cost estimating, etc.).
Discrete Effort
Work effort that is separate, distinct, and related to the completion of specific work breakdown structure components and deliverables, and that can be directly planned and measured. Contrast with apportioned effort.
A medium and the information recorded thereon, that generally has permanence and can be read by a person or a machine. Examples include project management plans, specifications, procedures, studies, and manuals.
Documented Procedure
A formalized written description of how to carry out an activity, process, technique, or methodology.
Dummy Activity
A schedule activity of zero duration used to show a logical relationship in the arrow diagramming method. Dummy activities are used when logical relationships cannot be completely or correctly described with schedule activity arrows. Dummy activities are generally shown graphically as a clashed line headed by an arrow.
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. See also original duration, remaining duration, and actual duration.
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.
Earned Value (EV)
The value of work performed expressed in terms of the approved budget assigned to that work for a schedule activity or work breakdown structure component. Also referred to as the budgeted cost of work performed (BCWP).
Earned Value Management (EVM)
A management methodology for integrating scope, schedule, and resources, and for objectively measuring project performance and
Performance is measured by determining the budgeted cost of work performed (i.e., earned value) and comparing it to the actual cost of work performed (i.e., actual cost). Progress is measured by comparing the earned value to the planned value.
Earned Value Technique (EVT) [Technique]
A specific technique for measuring the performance of work and used to establish the pelformcnlce measurement baseline (PMB). Also referred to as the earning rules and crediting method.
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,
A company, business, firm, partnership, corporation, or governmental agency.
Enterprise Environmental Factors [Output/Input]
Any or all external environmental factors and internal organizational environmental factors that surround or influence the project's success. These factors are from any or all of the enterprises involved in the project, and include organizational culture and structure, infrastructure, existing resources, commercial databases, market conditions, and project management software.
Estimate [Output/Input]
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).
Estimate at Completion (EAC) [OutputlInput]
The expected total cost of a schedule activity, a work breakdown structure component, or the project when the defined scope of work will be completed. EAC is equal to the actual cost (AC) plus the estimate to complete (ETC) for all of the remaining work. EAC = AC plus ETC. The EAC may be calculated based on performance to date or estimated by the project team based on other factors, in which case it is often referred to as the latest revised estimate. See also earned value technique and estimate to complete.
Estimate to Complete (ETC) [Output/Input]
The expected cost needed to complete all the remaining work for a schedule activity, }cork breakdown structure component, or the project. See also earned value technique and estimate at completion.
Something that happens, an occurrence, an outcome.
Exception Report
Document that includes only major variations from the plan (rather than all variations).
Directing. managing, performing, and accomplishing the project work, providing the deliverables, and providing work performance information.
See execute.
Executing Processes [Process Group]
Those processes performed to complete the work defined in the project management plan to accomplish the project's objectives defined in the project scope statement.
See execute.
Expected Monetary Value (EMV) Analysis
A statistical technique that calculates the average outcome when the future includes scenarios that may or may not happen. A common use of this technique is within decision tree analysis. Modeling and simulation are recommended for cost and schedule risk analysis because it is more powerful and less subject to misapplication than expected monetary value analysis.
Expert Judgment [Technique]
Judgment provided based upon expertise in an application area, knowledge area, discipline, industry, etc. as appropriate for the activity being performed. Such expertise may be provided by any group or person with specialized education. knowledge, skill, experience, or training, and is available from many sources, including: other units within the performing organization; consultants; stakeholders. including customers; professional and technical associations; and industry groups.
Failure Mode and Effect Analysis (FMEA) [Technique]
An analytical procedure in which each potential failure mode in every component of a product is analyzed to determine its effect on the reliability of that component and, by itself or in combination with other possible failure modes, on the reliability of the product or system and on the required function of the component; or the examination of a product (at the system andlor- lower levels) for all ways that a failure may occur. For each potential failure, an estimate is made of its effect on the total system and of its impact. In addition, a review is undertaken of the action planned to minimize the probability of failure and to minimize its effects.
Fast Tracking [Technique]
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 schedule compression and see also crashing.
Finish Date
A point in time associated with a schedule activity's completion. Usually qualified by one of the following: actual, planned, estimated, scheduled, early, late, baseline, target, or current.
Finish-to-Finish (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 (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.
Firm-Fixed-Price (FFP) Contract
A type of fixed price contract where the hover pays the seller a set amount (as defined by the contract), regardless of the seller's costs.
Fixed-Price-Incentive-Fee (FPIF) Contract
A type of' contract where the buyer pays the seller a set amount (as defined by the contract), and the seller can earn an additional amount if the seller meets defined performance criteria.
Fixed-Price or Lump-Sum Contract
A type of contract involving a fixed total price for a well-defined product. Fixed-price contracts may also include incentives for meeting or exceeding selected project objectives, such as schedule targets. The simplest form of a fixed price contract is a purchase order.
Also called slack. See total float and see also free float.
Flowcharting [Technique]
The depiction in a diagram format of the inputs, process actions, and outputs of one or more processes within a system.
Estimates or predictions of conditions and events in the project s future based on information and knowledge available at the time of the forecast. Forecasts are updated and reissued based on work performance information provided as the project is executed. The information is based on the project's past performance and expected future performance, and includes information that could impact the project in the future, such as estimate at completion and estimate to complete.
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 Float (FF)
The amount of time that a schedule activity can be delayed without delaying the early start of any immediately following schedule activities. See also total float.
Functional Manager
Someone with management authority over an organizational unit within a frntctional organization. The manager of any group that actually makes a product or performs a service. Sometimes called a line manager.
Functional Organization
A hierarchical organization where each employee has one clear superior, staff are grouped by areas of specialization, and managed by a person with expertise in that area.
A supply of money or pecuniary resources immediately available. Gantt Chart. See bar chart.
Commodities, wares, merchandise.
A category or rank used to distinguish items that have the same functional use (e.g., "hammer"), but do not share the sane requirements for quality (e.g., different hammers may need to withstand different amounts of force).
Ground Rules [Tool]
A list of acceptable and unacceptable behaviors adopted by a project team to improve working relationships, effectiveness, and commwiication.
Hammock Activity
See sw marv activity.
Historical Information
Documents and data on prior projects including project files, records, correspondence, closed contracts, and closed projects.
Iluman Resource Planning [Process]
The process of identifying and documenting project roles, responsibilities and reporting relationships, as well as creating the staffing m anagentent plan.
Imposed Date
A fixed elate imposed on a schedule activity or schedule milestone, usually in the form of a "start no earlier than" and "finish no later than" date.
Influence Diagram [Tool]
Graphical representation of situations showing causal influences, time ordering of events, and other relationships among variables and outcomes.
Persons or groups that are not directly related to the acquisition or use of the project's product, but, due to their position in the customer organization*, can influence, positively or negatively, the course of the project.
Information Distribution [Process]
The process of making needed information available to project stakeholders in a timely manner.
Initiating Processes [Process Group]
Those processes performed to authorize and define the scope of a new phase or project or that can result in the continuation of halted project work. A large number of the initiating processes are typically done outside the project's scope of control by the organization, program, or portfolio processes and those processes provide input to the project's initiating processes group.
A person or organization that has both the ability and authority to start a project.
Input [Process Input]
Any item, whether internal or external to the project that is required by a process before that process proceeds. May be an output from a predecessor process.
Inspection [Technique]
Examining or measuring to verify whether an activity, component, product, result or service conforms to specified requirements.
Essential to completeness: requisite; constituent with; formed as a unit with another component.
Interrelated, interconnected, interlocked, or meshed components blended and unified into a functioning or unified whole.
Integrated Change Control [Process]
The process of reviewing all change requests, approving changes and controlling changes to deliverables and organizational process assets.
Invitation for Bid (IFB)
Generally, this term is equivalent to request jor proposal. However, in some application areas, it may have a narrower or more specific meaning.
A point or matter in question or in dispute, or a point or matter that is not settled and is under discussion or over which there are opposing views or disagreements.
Knowing something with the familiarity gained through experience, education, observation, or investigation, it is understanding a process, practice, or technique, or how to use a tool.
Knowledge Area Process
An identifiable project management process within a knowledge area.
Knowledge Area, Project Management
See Project Management Knowledge Area.
Lag [Technique]
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 alter 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 constraints assigned to the schedule activities without violating a schedule constraint or delaying the project completion date. The late finish dates are determined (luring 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 begin based upon the schedule network logic, the project completion date, and any constraints 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.
Latest Revised Estimate
See estimate at completion.
Lead ['technique]
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. See also lag. A negative lead is equivalent to a positive lag.
Lessons Learned [Output/Input]
The learning gained from the process of performing the project. Lessons learned may be identified at any point. Also considered a project record, to be included in the lessons learned knowledge base.
Lessons Learned Knowledge Base
A store of historical information and lessons learned about both the outcomes of previous project selection decisions and previous project performance.
Level of Effort (LOE)
Support-type activity (e.g., seller or customer liaison, project cost accounting, project management, etc.), which does not produce definitive end products. It is generally characterized by a uniform rate of work performance over a period of time determined by the activities supported.
See resource leveling. Life Cycle. See project life cycle.
A document used to record and describe or denote selected items identified during execution of a process or activity. Usually used with a modifier, such as issue, quality control, action, or defect.
See network logic.
Logic Diagram
See project schedule network diagram.
Logical Relationship
A dependency between two project schedule activities, or between a project schedule activity and a schedule milestone. See also precedence relationship. The four possible types of logical relationships are: Finish-to-Start: Finish-to-Finish; Start­to-Start; and Start-lo-Finish.
Manage Project Team [Process]
The process of tracking team member performance, providing feedback, resolving issues, and coordinating changes to enhance project performance.
Manage Stakeholders [Process]
The process of managing communications to satisfy the requirements of, and resolve issues with, project stakeholders.
Master Schedule [Tool]
A summary-level project schedule that identifies the major deliverables and work breakdown structure components and key schedule milestones. See also milestone schedule.
The aggregate of things used by an organization in any undertaking, such as equipment, apparatus, tools, machinery, gear, material, and supplies.
Matrix Organization
Any organizational structure in which the project manager shares responsibility with the fimctional managers for assigning priorities and for directing the work of persons assigned to the project.
A system of practices, techniques. procedures, and rules used by those who work in a discipline.
A significant point or event in the project. See also schedule milestone.
Milestone Schedule [Tool]
A summary-level schedule that identifies the major schedule milestones. See also master schedule.
Collect project performance data with respect to a plan, produce performance measures, and report and disseminate performance information.
Monitor and Control Project Work [Process]
The process of monitoring and controlling the processes required to initiate, plan, execute, and close a project to meet the performance objectives defined in the project management plan and project scope statement.
See monitor.
Monitoring and Controlling Processes [Process Group]
Those processes performed to measure and monitor project execution* so that corrective action can be taken when necessary to control the execution of the phase or project.
Monte Carlo Analysis
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 of possible total project cost or completion dates.
Near-Critical Activity
A schedule activity that has low total float. The concept of near-critical is equally applicable to a schedule activity or schedule network path. The limit below which total float is considered near critical is subject to expert judgment and varies from project to project.
See project schedule network diagram.
Network Analysis
See schedule network anal sis.
Network Logic
The collection of schedule activit}:' dependencies that makes up a project schedule network diagram.
Network Loop
A schedule network path that passes the same node twice. Network loops cannot be analyzed using traditional schedule network analysis techniques such as critical path method.
Network Open End
A schedule activity without any predecessor activities or successor activities creating an unintended break in a schedule network path. Network open ends are usually caused by missing logical relationships.
Network Path
Any continuous series of schedule activities connected with logical relationships in a project schedule network diagram.
Networking [Technique]
Developing relationships with persons who may be able to assist in the achievement of objectives and responsibilities.
One of the defining points of a schedule network; a junction point joined to some or all of the other dependency lines. See also arrow diagramming method and precedence diagramming method.
Something toward which work is to be directed, a strategic position to be attained, or a purpose to be achieved, a result to be obtained, a product to be produced, or a service to be performed.
An organizational function performing the ongoing execution of activities that produce the same product or provide a repetitive service. Examples are: production operations, manufacturing operations, and accounting operations.
A condition or situation favorable to the project, a positive set of circumstances, a positive set of events, a risk that will have a positive impact on project objectives, or a possibility for positive changes. Contrast with threat.
A group of persons organized for some purpose or to perform some type of 't'o'k within an enterprise.
Organization Chart [Tool]
A method for depicting interrelationships among a group of persons working together toward a common objective.
Organizational Breakdown Structure (OHS) [Tool]
A hierarchically organized depiction of the project organization arranged so as to relate the work packages to the perfor fining organizational units, (Sometimes OBS is written as Organization Breakdown Structure with the same definition.)
Organizational Process Assets [Outputllnput]
Any or all process related assets, from any or all of the organizations involved iii the project that are or can be used to influence the project's success. These process assets include formal and informal plans, policies, procedures, and guidelines. The process assets also include the organizations' knowledge bases such as lessons learned and historical irrfirrrrrcrtiorr.
Original Duration (OD)
The activity duration originally assigned to a schedule activity and not updated as progress is reported on the activity. Typically used for comparison with actual duration and remaining duration when reporting schedule progress.
Output [Process Output]
A product, result, or service generated by a process. May be an input to a successor process.
Parametric Estimating [Technique]
An estimating technique that uses a statistical relationship between historical data and other variables (e.g.. square footage in construction, lines of code in software development) to calculate an estimate for activityparameters, such as scope. cost, budget, and duration. This technique can produce higher levels of accuracy depending upon the sophistication and the underlying data built into the model. An example for the cost parameter is multiplying the planned quantity of work to be performed by the historical cost per unit to obtain the estimated cost.
Pareto Chart [Tool]
A histogram, ordered by frequency of occurrence, that shows how many results were generated by each identified cause.
Path Convergence
The merging or joining of parallel schedule network paths into the same node in a project schedule network diagram. Path convergence is characterized by a schedule activity with more than one predecessor activity.
Path Divergence
Extending or generating parallel schedule network paths from the same node in a project schedule network diagram. Path divergence is characterized by a schedule activity with more than one successor activity.
Percent Complete (PC or PCl')
An estimate, expressed as a percent, of the amount of work that has been completed on an activity or a stork breakdown structure component.
Perform Quality Assurance (QA) [Process]
The process of applying the planned, systematic quality activities (such as audits or peer reviews) to ensure that the project employs all processes needed to meet requirements
Perform Quality Control (QC) [Process]
The process of monitoring specific project results* to determine whether they comply with relevant quality standards and identifying ways to eliminate causes of unsatisfactory performance.
Performance Measurement Baseline
An approved integrated scope-schedule-cost* plan for the project work against which project execution is compared to measure and manage performance. Technical and quality parameters may also be included.
Performance Reporting [Process]
The process of collecting and distributing performance information. This includes status reporting, progress measurement, and forecasting.
Performance Reports [Output/Input]
Documents and presentations that provide organized and summarized work performance information, earned value management parameters and calculations, and analyses of project work progress and status. Common formats for performance reports include bar charts, S-curves, histograms, tables, and project schedule network diagram showing current schedule status.
Performing Organization
The enterprise whose personnel are most directly involved in doing the work of the project.
See project phase.
Plan Contracting [Process]
The process of documenting the products, services, and results requirements and identifying potential sellers.
Plan Purchases and Acquisitions [Process]
The process of determining what to purchase or acquire, and determining when and how to do so.
Planned Finish Date (PF)
See scheduled finish date. Planned Start Date (PS). See scheduled start date.
Planned Value (PV)
The authorized budget assigned to the scheduled work to be accomplished for a schedule activity or work breakdown structure component. Also referred to as the budgeted cost of work scheduled (BCWS).
Planning Package
A WBS component below the control account with known work content but without detailed schedule activities. See also control account.
Planning Processes [Process Group]
Those processes performed to define and mature the project scope, develop the project management plan. and identify and schedule the project activities* that occur within the project.
A collection of projects or programs and other work that are grouped together to facilitate effective management of that work to meet strategic business objectives. The projects or programs of the portfolio may not necessarily be interdependent or directly related.
Portfolio Management [Technique]
The centralized management of one or more portfolios, which includes identifying, prioritizing, authorizing, managing, and controlling projects, programs, and other related work, to achieve specific strategic business objectives,
Position Description [Tool]
An explanation of a project team member's roles and responsibilities.

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