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Practice Standard for Scheduling

In project management, a schedule consists of a list of a project’s terminal elements with intended start and finish dates. Terminal elements are the lowest element in a schedule, which is not further subdivided. Those items are often estimated in terms of resource requirements, budget and duration, linked by dependencies and scheduled.

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.

Effective project scheduling and time management are critical factors in the success of failure of a project. The Practice Standard for Scheduling has been developed as a complement to the Project Management Body of Knowledge: (Pmbok Guide) in the Knowledge Area of Time Management. This describes the standards of practice related to scheduling, methods that are generally recognized as good practice for most of the projects most of the time, following the PMBOK style and notation.

The Practice Standard for Scheduling transforms Chapter Six of the PMBOK® Guide -Third Edition (“Project Time Management”) into an actionable and objective measurement process for project schedule models and project schedules. The practice standard presents seasoned practitioners with the tools and information they need to efficiently and effectively schedule projects with confidence, and is targeted at project management practitioners who are knowledgeable of the fundamentals of Critical Path Methodology (CPM) project scheduling.

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