Skip to content

Much more than deadlines: The role of schedule on Project Management

In a business environment, a group of words which the meaning is not very well understood are daily used thanks to a shallow comprehension. This is the case of the term ‘Project’.

According to Business Dictonary[1], Project is the “planned set of interrelated tasks to be executed over a fixed period and within certain cost and other limitations”. Moreover, a project demands an specific goal to be reached, a well defined scope and, consequently, of resources involved.

There are many variables to be considered, which generates the urge of a coherent and focused management that contemplates the main points necessary to reach its goal.

Project Management, according to Project Management Institute[2] (PMI), is defined as “the application of knowledge, skills, tools, and techniques to project activities to meet the project requirements”; in other words, is to improve the usage of the destined resources of a project to reach success within a determined deadline and with the expected characteristics.

It is possible to use a schedule as a guide for support in the management work. But what truly is a schedule?

Schedule is the term usually referring to deadline. However, in project management, schedule is the tool which consists of a set of activities and resources of the organization that allows the control of the many variables involved in a project. This tool also enables to control and determine when each activity should initiate and when it should be finished respecting the deadline.

The schedule is strongly connected to the project’s scope, which should be carefully defined and also contemplate the key points to reach the main goal of a project. Project Scope[3] is “the work that needs to be accomplished to deliver a product, service, or result with the specified features and functions“.

Continuing the approach on schedule, it is a visual, easy understanding tool which provides better interaction and enable its comprehension not only by experts in the field.

In a project management, it is indispensable that all the team involved have access, at least, to the part of the schedule which indicates their acting, since it is importante to reduce the risks concerning to potential delays. From the moment that everyone is aware of their responsibilities, we realize that the energy given off by team members increases.

It should be highlighted that as much important as making a schedule is to keep it up to date, with constant improvement and focus to meet the needs which may arise throughout the project. In additon, there is no single roadmap for creating and managing a schedule, since it must be taken into account the needs of each project, respecting their profile and possible interests of Stakeholders.

Finally, there is the course about Project Scheduling offered by ProjectManagers.Org, which enables the understanding of points about the scheduling management, providing information that will allow observing, from a more mature perspective, the importance of management.

[1] Business Dictionary: http://www.businessdictionary.com/definition/project.html – Accessed on 21/09/2016.

[2] Project Management Institute: https://www.pmi.org/about/learn-about-pmi/what-is-project-management – Accessed on 21/09/2016.

[3] Project Scope: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Scope_(project_management) – Accessed on 21/09/2016.