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Project Management Key Terms – Part 2

Project Management Key Terms – Part 2

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 a project, with all decisions and recommendations being recorded

Change request

Requests to expand or reduce the project scope, modified policies, processes, plans, or procedures, modified cost or budgets, or revise schedules


A request, demand, or assertion of rights by a seller against the buyer, or vice versa, for consideration, compensation, or payment under the terms of a legally binding contract, such as for a disputed change


A document that formally authorized is all recognizes a project

Circular dependency

A timing relationship among tasks that creates an endless loop that cannot be resolved

Co-location technique

An organisational 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, that is, variation from a process that would never be considered normal or not unusual, and is indicated by a random pattern of points within the control limits.  This is also referred to as a random cause

Communication management plan

The document that describes:

The communication needs and expectations of 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

Configuration management system

This tool is 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:

Identifying document the functional and physical characteristics of a product, result, service, or component

Control any changes to such characteristics; record am report each change and its implementation status; and support the audit of the products, results, or components to verify conformance to the requirements

It includes the documentation, tracking systems, and defined approval levels necessary for authorizing and controlling changes


The state, quality, or sense of being restricted to a given course of action or inaction.  And applicable restriction all limitation, either internal or external to a project, which will affect the performance of the project or process.  For example, a schedule constraint is any limitation or restraint placed on the project schedule that affects where schedule activity can be scheduled and is usually in the form of fixed imposed dates

Contingency reserve

Time or money that is factored into your schedule or budget to mitigate identified risks.  The amount of funds, budget, or time needed above the estimate to reduce the risk of overruns of project objectives to a level acceptable to the organization


A contract is a mutually binding agreement that obligates the seller to provide the specified product or service or result and obligates the buyer to pay for it


Comparing actual performance with planned performance, analyzing variances, assessing trends to affect process improvements, evaluating possible alternatives, and recommending appropriate corrective action as needed

Control account tool

A management control point where scope, budget in the form of resource plans, actual cost, and schedule are integrated and compare to earned value for performance measurements

Control chart tool

A graphic display of process data over time and against established control limits, and that has a center line that assists in detecting the trend of plotted values toward either control limits

Control limits

The area composed of three standard deviations on either side of the center line, or mean, of a normal distribution of data plotted on a control chart that reflects the expected variation in the data

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

Cost management plan

The document that sets out the format and establish the activities and criteria for planning, structuring, and controlling the project costs.

Cost of quality (COQ) Technique

A method of determining the costs incurred to ensure quality.  Prevention and appraisal costs (cost for conformance) include costs for quality planning, quality control, and quality assurance to ensure compliance to requirements.  Failure costs (cost of nonconformance) include costs to reworked products, components, or processes that are noncompliance, costs of warranty work and waste, and loss of reputation

Cost performance baseline

A specific version of the time phased budget used to compare actual expenditures to planned expenditures to determine if preventative or corrective action is needed to meet the project objectives

Cost performance index (CPI)

A measure of cost efficiency on a project.  It is the ratio of earned value to actual costs

Cost plus fixed fee (CPFF) contract

A type of cost reimbursable contract where the buyer reimburses the seller for the Sellers allowable costs (allowable costs are defined by the contract) plus a fixed amount of profit or fee

Cost plus incentive fee (CPIF) contract

It’s a type of cost reimbursable contract where the buyer reimburses the seller for the Sellers allowable costs as defined in the contract, and the seller earns its profits if it meets defined performance criteria

Cost reimbursable contract

A type of contract involving payments to the seller for the Sellers actual costs, plus a fee typically representing seller’s profit.  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 and incentives or bonus payments

Cost variance (CV)

A measure of cost performance on a project.  It is the difference between earned value and actual cost

Crashing Technique

I 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 costs.  Typical approaches for crashing the schedule includes reducing schedule activity durations and increasing the assignment of resources on schedule activities


Standards, roles, or tests on which a judgment or decision can be based, or by which a product, service, or 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

A schedule network analysis technique that modifies the project schedule to account for limited resources

Critical path

Generally, but not always, the sequence of schedule activities that determines the duration of the project.  It is the longest path to the project

Critical path methodology (CPM)

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 the specified completion date, which sometimes is the project early finish date determined during the forward pass calculation


The amount of money associated with a task when you assign resources which are quick meant, materials, or people associated with these or hourly rates and any additional fixed costs

CV (cost variance)

The difference between the baseline costs and a combination of actual cost to date and estimated costs remaining – also known as scheduled costs.  The cost variance is either positive and hence over budget, or negative and hence under budget.  When using earned value management, cost variance is the difference between the earned value and actual cost

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