The Project Time Management Knowledge Area is concerned with scheduling project activities and the completion of the project.
In the previous Project Scope Management knowledge area, we established work packages from deliverables.
The work we perform in the Project Time Management processes will further decompose the work packages into explicit activities that we’ll use to establish the project schedule.
The project schedule provides the starting and ending dates for all project activities.
The schedule is what the project team refers to for what needs to be done and when it needs to be done.
In order to develop a project schedule, the work packages have to be further decomposed into activities.
These activities must then be sequenced, and the resources needed for each activity determined, and this is followed by figuring out how long each activity will take.
Once all the component pieces are known, a project schedule can be created.
Time management processes occur at least once on every project, but since the project tasks are closely tied to scope, cost, and quality, it's very likely that these processes will reoccur often during the project and that the project schedule will under revisions.
Though in practice the Project Time Management processes may be performed concurrently, there is an inherent order as illustrated on the following page to the scheduling processes.
The Processes in Project Time Management are:
- Define Activities Process (6.1)
Decomposing the work packages into activities.
- Sequence Activities Process (6.2)
Determining the order the activities need to be performed in.
- Estimate Activity Resources Process (6.3)
Finding out the quantities and types of resources needed for the activities.
- Estimate Activity Durations Process (6.4)
Determining how long the activities will take.
- Develop Schedule Process (6.5)
Creating the project schedule.
- Control Schedule Process (6.6)
Monitoring the schedule and influencing the factors that can lead to schedule changes.
Schedule management plan
Each knowledge area has at least one subsidiary plan focusing on a specific subject as part of the overall project management plan.
Preplanning is the purpose of these components, and these plans map out the specific requirements for the deliverables and project management processes that will take place in that knowledge area.
This preplanning may sound like a lot of work, but we can think of these subsidiary plans as being the scope statements for the knowledge area because they describe the who, what, where, why, and how of the project management work that will be performed for that section’s subject matter.
The schedule management plan is a subsidiary component of the project management plan, created in the Develop Project Management Plan process (4.2), and it should be established before work begins in the time management processes because it describes:
- What activities, methodologies, tools, and processes will be used for creating the project schedule.
- How the schedule will be approved by the stakeholders and project team.
- How likely schedule changes are to occur on the project and what kind of special approvals are necessary for schedule changes.
As with other subsidiary plans, templates can help provide the basis for the schedule management plan.
The complexity of the project and how likely schedule changes are to occur will be factors in deciding how detailed the schedule management plan needs to be.