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Project Management Key Terms – Part 8

Schedule baseline

A specific version of the schedule model used to compare actual results to the plan to determine if preventative or corrective action is needed to meet the project objectives

Schedule compression

Shortening the project schedule duration without reducing the project scope

Schedule management plan

The document that establishes criteria and the activities for developing and controlling the project schedule

A schedule network analysis

The technique of identifying early and late start dates, as well as early and late finish dates, for the uncompleted portions of project schedule activities

Schedule performance index (SPI)

A measure of schedule efficiency on a project.  It is the ratio of earned value. The SPI equals earned value divided by planned value

SV (schedule variance)

The difference between the planned and actual duration of the planned and actual finish dates.  When using earned value management, schedule variance is the difference between the earned value and the planned value

Scheduled finish date (SF)

The point in time that work was scheduled to finish on a schedule activity.  The schedule to finish date is normally within the range of dates delimited by the early finish date and the late finish date.  It may reflect of resource leveling of scarce resources.  Sometimes called planned finish date

Scheduled start date (SS)

The point in time that work was scheduled to start on a schedule activity.  The scheduled start date is normally within the range of dates delimited by the early start date and the late start date.  It may reflect resource leveling of scarce resources.  Sometimes called planned start date.


The work needed to produce the deliverables, products, or outcomes of the project or outcomes for the project

Scope baseline

And approved a specific version of the detailed scope statement, work breakdown structure, and its associated work breakdown structure dictionary

Scope change

Any change to the project scope.  A scope change almost always requires an adjustment to the project cost or schedule

Scope creep

Adding features and functionality (project scope) without addressing the effects on time, costs, and resources, or without customer approval

Scope management plan

The document that describes how the project scope will be defined, developed, and verified and how the work breakdown structure will be created and defined, and that provides guidance on how the project scope will be managed and controlled by the project management team.


Graphic display of curative costs, labour hours, percentage of work, or other quantities, plotted against time.  Used to depict planned value, earned value, and actual costs of project work.

The name derives from the S-like shape of the curve – flatter at the beginning and end, steeper in the middle, produced on a project that start slowly, accelerates, and entails off.  Also a term used to express the cumulative likelihood distribution that is a result of a simulation, a tool of quantitative risk analysis

Secondary risk

The risk of arises as a direct result of implementing a risk response


A provider will supplier of products, services, or results to an organization

Sensitivity analysis

A quantitative risk analysis and modeling technique use to help determine which risks have the most potential impact on the project.

It examines the extent to which the uncertainty of each project element affects the objective being examined when all other and certain elements are held at the baseline values.  The typical display of results is in the form of a tornado diagram


A simulation uses a project model that translate the uncertainties specified and a detailed level into their potential impact on objectives that are expressed at the level of the total project.

Project simulations use computer models and estimates of risk, usually expressed as a probability distribution of possible costs or durations and a detailed work level, and are typically performed using Monte Carlo’s analysis


The amount of time that you can delay a task before the task becomes critical.  Stack is used up when any delay in the task will delay the overall project deadline

Special cause

A source of variation that is not inherent in the system, is not predictable, and it is intermittent.  It can be assigned to a defect in the system.

On a control chart, points beyond the control limits, or non-random patterns within the control limits, indicate it.  Also referred to as an assignable cause


A document that specifies, in a completes, precise, variable manner, the requirements, design, behaviour, or other characteristics of a system, components, product, result, or service and, often, the procedures for determining whether these provisions have been satisfied.

Examples are: a requirements specification, design specification, product specification, and tests specification

Specification limits

The area, on either side of the Center line, or mean, of data plotted on a control chart that meets the customer’s requirements for a product or service.  This area may be greater than or less than the area defined by the control limits


The person or group that provides the Financial Resources, in cash or in kind, for the project

Staffing management plan

The document that describes when and how human resource requirements will be met.  It is contained in, or is a subsidiary plan of, the human resource plan


Person or organisation, for example customer, sponsor, performing organization, or the public, that is actively involved in the project, or whose interests may be positively or negatively affected by the execution or completion of the project.  A stakeholder may also exert influence over the project and its deliverables


A document that provides, for, and repeated use, roles, guidelines, or characteristics for activities or the results, aimed at the achievement of the degree of order in a given context

Start date

A point in time associated with a schedule activities starts, usually qualified by one of the following: actual, planned, estimated, schedule, early, later, target, baseline, or current

Start to finish relationship

A dependency relationship in which the start of one task determines the finish of another task

Start to start relationship

A dependency relationship in which the start of one task determines the start of another task

Statement of work (SOW)

A narrative description of products, services, or results to be supplied

Strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats (SWOT) analysis

This information gathering techniques exam is the project from the perspective of each project strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats to increase the breadth of the risks considered by risk management

Sub project

A smaller portion of the overall project created what’s when a project is subdivided into more manageable components or pieces

Successor activity

A schedule activity that follows a predecessor activity, as determined by their logical relationship

Sub task

At are so details a specific step in a project phase.  A sub tasks is also called a subordinate task


In a dependency relationship, the task whose schedule is dependent on the linked predecessors task schedule

Summary task in a project outline, the task that has subordinate tasks.  A summary task rolls up the details of its sub tasks and has no timing of its own

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