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Project Management Definitions – Part 15

Project Management Definitions – Part 15


The assurance that the product, service, or system meets the needs of the customer and other identified stakeholders.  It often involves acceptance and suitability with external customers

Value engineering

An approach used to optimize project lifecycle costs, save time, increased profits, improve quality, expand market share, solve problems, and/or use resources more effectively


A quantifiable deviation, departure, or divergence away from unknown baseline or expected value

Variance analysis

A method for resolving the total variance in the set of scope, cost, and schedule variables into specific component variances that are associated with defined factors affecting the scope, cost, and schedule variables.


The evaluation of whether or not a product, service, or system complies with a regulation, requirement, specification, or impose condition.  It is often an internal process

Virtual team

A group of persons with shared objectives and fulfill their roles with little or no time spent meeting face to face.  Various forms of technology are often used to facilitate communication among team members.  Virtual teams can be comprised of persons separated by a great distance

Voice of the customer

A planning technique used to provide products, services, and results that truly reflect customer requirements by translating those customer requirements into the appropriate technical requirements for each phase of project product development.

Work authorization

A permission and direction, typically written, to begin work on a specific schedule activity or work package or control account.  It is a method for sanctioning project work to ensure that the work is done by the identified organisation, at the right time, and in the proper sequence.

Work authorization system

This tool is a subsystem of the overall project management system.  Is a collection of formal documented procedures that defines how a project work will be authorized (committed) to ensure that the work is done by the identified organisation, at the right time, and in the proper sequence.

It includes the steps, documents, tracking system, and defined approval levels needed to issue work authorizations.

Work breakdown structure (WBS)

A deliverable oriented hierarchical decomposition of the work to be executed by the project team to accomplish the project objectives and create the required deliverables.  It organizes and defines the total scope of the project

Work breakdown structure component

An entry in the work breakdown structure that can be at any level

Work breakdown structure dictionary

A document that describes each component in the work breakdown structure (WBS).  For each WBS components, the WBS dictionary includes a brief definition of the scope or statement of work, defined deliverables, a list of associated activities, and the list of milestones.

Other information may include, responsible organization, start and end dates, resources required, and estimate of cost, charge number, contract information, quality requirements, and technical references to facilitate performance of the work.


The amount of work that any resources performing and are given time, taking into account all tasks to which the resource is assigned

Work package

A deliverable or project work component at the lowest level of each branch of the work breakdown structure.

Work performance information

Information and data on the status of the project schedule activities being performed to accomplish the project work, collected as part of the direct and manage project execution processes.

Information includes, status of deliverables, implementation status for change requests, corrective actions, preventative 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.


A response to a negative risk that has occurred.  If distinguished from contingency plan in that a work around is not planned in advance of the occurrence of the risk event.

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