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October 2001

FORT BELVOIR, VA 22060-5565
For sale by the U.S. Government Printing Office
Superintendent of Documents, Mail Stop: SSOP, Washington, DC 20302-9328
This guide provides an introduction to scheduling intended for use by government
program managers and industry program of project managers and their respective staffs.
It is the third version of a 1986 publication prepared by Mr. David D. Acker, Mr. J. Stanley
Baumgartner, and Mr. Michael B. Patterson. A second version, published in 1994, was
prepared by Mr. William W. Bahnmaier and Mr. Paul T. McMahon.

This version addresses many of the topics contained in their earlier versions, especially
those relating to the different types of scheduling techniques. The major difference
between this and the previous versions is the treatment of scheduling as part of the
acquisition process and the overall program management effort, particularly as it relates
to the planning and control functions of program management. Scheduling is discussed
in the context of the development of integrated master plans and schedules, the risk
management process, and earned value management.

This guide is not intended as a detailed treatment of scheduling techniques. Instead, it is

more of a primer on the subject, addressing the importance of scheduling and the
application of basic scheduling techniques. It is a compilation of information from various
sources, and hopefully will serve as a starting point for those who desire to delve deeper
into the various scheduling techniques.

The proliferation of microcomputers has greatly enhanced the capability of managers at all
levels to develop and analyze schedules. Chapter 9 provides an overview of the types of
automated tools available and information on desirable features of scheduling software

This document reflects the efforts of many people. Mr. William W. Bahnmaier , Mr. Paul
T. McMahon , Lt Col. David Bachman, USAF, and Mr. John Kelley of the DAU/DSMC
faculty provided invaluable guidance and advice. Mr. Gregory T. Caruth of the DAU/
DSMC Press was very helpful in the composition of the guide. Frances M. Battle, provided
desktop publishing skills. Mr. Van Kinney, Ms. Joni Forman and Mr. Tom Parry of the OSD
Acquisition, Resources and Analysis staff provided comments on the draft and overall
support for the project. Special recognition also goes to the Institute for Defense Analysis
team of Mr. Lou Simpleman, Mr. Jim Lloyd, Mr. George Tolis, Ms. Patti Phillips, Ms. Tina
Higgins, and Ms. Yolanda Prescott, who wrote, edited, and prepared the major portions
of the text.

Norman A. McDaniel William W. Bahnmaier

Chair Editor
Program Management and Leadership Program Management and Leadership
Department Department

Chapter 1 INTRODUCTION ................................................................................................. 1

1.1 Overview ........................................................................................................................ 2
1.2 Purpose of This Guide .................................................................................................. 2
1.3 Guide Content ................................................................................................................ 2
1.4 Other Sources of Data ................................................................................................... 2


2.1 Program Management Overview ................................................................................ 3
2.2 The Evolution of Program Management ................................................................... 4
2.3 The Acquisition Process and Scheduling .................................................................. 5
2.4 Risk Management and Scheduling ............................................................................. 6

Chapter 3 PROGRAM MANAGEMENT AND SCHEDULING ....................................... 7

3.1 Program Planning and Scheduling ............................................................................. 7
3.2 Work Breakdown Structure ......................................................................................... 8
3.2.1 Integrated Master Plans/Schedules .............................................................. 10
3.3 Program Controlling and Scheduling ........................................................................ 11
3.3.1 Earned Value Management ............................................................................ 11
3.4 Schedule Preparation .................................................................................................... 13
3.4.1 Activity Definition ........................................................................................... 13
3.4.2 Activity Sequencing ......................................................................................... 14
3.4.3 Activity Duration Estimating ......................................................................... 14
3.4.4 Schedule Development ................................................................................... 15
3.4.5 Schedule Control .............................................................................................. 15
3.5 Schedule Risk ................................................................................................................. 16
3.6 Summary ......................................................................................................................... 17

Chapter 4 SCHEDULE TYPES AND THEIR EVOLUTION ............................................. 19

4.1 Introduction .................................................................................................................... 19
4.2 Schedule Types .............................................................................................................. 19
4.2.1 Gantt and Milestone Charts ............................................................................ 19
4.2.2 Network Schedules .......................................................................................... 21
4.2.3 Production Schedules ...................................................................................... 23
4.3 Summary ......................................................................................................................... 24

Chapter 5 GANTT AND MILESTONE CHARTS ............................................................... 25

5.1 Description ..................................................................................................................... 25
5.2 Constructing Gantt and Milestone Charts ................................................................. 31
5.3 Gantt and Milestone Chart Advantages and Disadvantages .................................. 32
5.3.1 Advantages ....................................................................................................... 32
5.3.2 Disadvantages .................................................................................................. 32
5.4 How and When Gantt and Milestone Charts Are Employed ................................. 32

5.5 Summary ......................................................................................................................... 33

Chapter 6 NETWORK SCHEDULING ................................................................................ 35

6.1 Description ..................................................................................................................... 35
6.1.1 PERT .................................................................................................................. 36
6.1.2 CPM .................................................................................................................... 37
6.1.3 PDM ................................................................................................................... 38
6.2 Network Scheduling Advantages and Disadvantages ............................................ 41
6.2.1 Advantages ....................................................................................................... 41
6.2.2 Disadvantages .................................................................................................. 41
6.3 How and When To Network Schedules Are Employed ......................................... 41
6.3.1 PERT Example .................................................................................................. 42
6.3.2 CPM Example ................................................................................................... 44
6.3.3 PDM Example ................................................................................................... 46
6.4 Network Scheduling When Resources Are Limited ................................................ 49
6.5 Summary ......................................................................................................................... 51

Chapter 7 PRODUCTION SCHEDULING .......................................................................... 53

7.1 Description ..................................................................................................................... 53
7.1.1 Objective Chart ................................................................................................. 54
7.1.2 Production Plan Chart ..................................................................................... 54
7.1.3 Program Status Chart ....................................................................................... 56
7.1.4 Line of Balance ................................................................................................. 56
7.2 How and When To Use the Line of Balance Techniques ........................................ 57
7.2.1 General ............................................................................................................... 57
7.2.2 Analysis ............................................................................................................. 57
7.3 Line of Balance Advantages and Disadvantages ...................................................... 58
7.3.1 Advantages ....................................................................................................... 58
7.3.2 Disadvantages .................................................................................................. 58
7.4 Summary ......................................................................................................................... 58

Chapter 8 TIME MANAGEMENT ....................................................................................... 59

8.1 Time Management and the Program .......................................................................... 59
8.1.1 Time Reserve .................................................................................................... 59
8.1.2 “Now” Schedule ................................................................................................ 59
8.1.3 Value of Time .................................................................................................... 60
8.2 Time Management and the Program Manager ......................................................... 62
8.3 Summary ......................................................................................................................... 63

Chapter 9 AUTOMATED SCHEDULING TOOLS ............................................................ 65

9.1 Automated Planning Aids ........................................................................................... 65
9.2 Functional Characteristics and Features .................................................................... 66
9.3 Evaluating Project Management Software Projects .................................................. 68
9.4 Finding Out More .......................................................................................................... 70

APPENDIX A INTEGRATED MASTER SCHEDULE ..................................................... 71

APPENDIX B TIME ROBBERS ........................................................................................... 77

APPENDIX C GLOSSARY .................................................................................................. 79

APPENDIX D BIBLIOGRAPHY ......................................................................................... 83

3-1 Generic Aircraft System WBS ....................................................................................... 9
3-2 IMP/IMS Sample ........................................................................................................... 10
4-1 Gantt Chart Example ..................................................................................................... 20
4-2 Milestone Chart Example ............................................................................................. 21
4-3 Network Schedule Example ........................................................................................ 22
5-1 Example Gantt Chart Symbols ..................................................................................... 25
5-2 Example Gantt Chart ..................................................................................................... 26
5-3 Example Milestone Chart Symbols ............................................................................. 27
5-4 Example Milestone Chart ............................................................................................. 28
5-5 Example Combination Chart ....................................................................................... 29
5-6 Gantt Chart with Amplifying Information ................................................................. 30
6-1 Beta Distribution with PERT Time Estimates ........................................................... 37
6-2 Example PDM Relationships/Constraints ................................................................ 39
6-3 Example PDM Constraints with Lag Time ................................................................ 40
6-4 Example PDM Activity Node ...................................................................................... 40
6-5 PERT Example ............................................................................................................... 42
6-6 PERT Example with Slack Time .................................................................................. 43
6-7 CPM Example ................................................................................................................ 44
6-8 PDM Example ................................................................................................................ 47
6-9 PDM Example—Example and Late Start and Finish Times ................................... 47
6-10 PDM Example with Lag Time ..................................................................................... 48
6-11 Network Schedule with Constrained Resources ...................................................... 49
6-12 Personnel Loading Chart .............................................................................................. 50
6-13 Revised Personnel Loading Chart .............................................................................. 51
6-14 Revised Network Schedule with Constrained Resources ....................................... 52
7-1 Line of Balance Technique ........................................................................................... 55
8-1 Total Cost Analysis for Selecting “Optimum” Program Duration ........................ 60
9-1 On-Screen Data Entry Using Gantt Chart Feature
(AEC Software Fast Track Schedule) 68

6-1 CPM Example Time Estimates .................................................................................... 46
9-1 Project Management Software Functions and Criteria ............................................ 69


1.1 OVERVIEW Effective scheduling supports the follow-

ing key program management activities:
In its simplest form, a schedule is a listing
of activities and events organized by time. • Provides the basis for effective com-
In its more complex form, the process ex- munications within the government team
amines all program activities and their re- and with contractors,
lationships to each other in terms of realis-
tic constraints of time, funds, and people, • Identifies a baseline for program status
i.e., resources. In program management monitoring, reporting, and program control,
practice, the schedule is a powerful plan-
ning, control, and communications tool that, • Facilitates management, and
when properly executed, supports time
and cost estimates, opens communications • Provides the basis for resource analysis
among personnel involved in program ac- and leveling, exploration of alternatives,
tivities, and establishes a commitment to and cost/time tradeoff studies.
program activities.
On the other hand, poor scheduling can
A key aspect of program management plan- adversely impact a program in a number
ning, scheduling is integral to a program’s of areas. Haphazard schedules make it
acquisition strategy and to risk manage- difficult, at best, to determine a realistic
ment, financial, and technical management completion date and to efficiently allo-
plans. In addition, scheduling is an impor- cate resources to the entire program. This
tant element of the other management func- creates financial problems—escalation of
tions: organizing, staffing, controlling, and costs, increased support costs, delayed
leading. For example, controlling is per- return on investment, funding cuts, or
formed to keep abreast of program execu- program termination.
tion. To achieve this goal, it is necessary to
know whether the program is behind, on, Since scheduling is a powerful planning,
or ahead of schedule, and what adjust- control, and communications tool avail-
ments are necessary to keep the program able for program management, PMs must
on schedule once it’s back on track. have a good working knowledge of sched-
uling practices and applications (such as
Why do Program Managers (PMs) sched- Gantt, milestone, and network schedules)
ule? The simple answer is they need a road in order to achieve program goals. PMs
map for all program players. In reality, will not always have to construct detailed
scheduling can accomplish far more than schedules, but they must be able to under-
providing a list of activities and times. stand and analyze schedules created by

others (e.g., contractors) to successfully the various types of schedules and how
manage a program. Since scheduling is an and why they evolved. This chapter is a
intrinsic and indispensable element of the precursor for Chapters 5, 6, and 7, which
management process, it is treated within present a more detailed discussion of
the context of program management. the key schedule types. These chapters
focus on Gantt and milestone schedules,
1.2 PURPOSE OF THIS GUIDE network schedules, and production
This guide is an introduction to sched-
uling. It is meant for people who already Chapter 8 introduces the concept of time
have some experience in program man- management as it relates to the program
agement and those who seek to learn more and to the PM. Chapter 9 presents the
about the subject. It is not a detailed subject of automated project planning tools
treatment of the subject, but instead, ex- and summarizes some of the desirable fea-
plains how scheduling fits into the overall tures of currently available software prod-
program management effort and how to ucts. In addition to an overview describing
accomplish schedule planning. It also il- the types of automated tools available, this
lustrates different scheduling concepts chapter provides some suggestions on how
and techniques and how they can be ap- to find and evaluate the latest products.
plied and analyzed to manage effectively. The chapter concludes with a summary of
Finally, it is intended as a road map to information sources that will be useful for
other useful and more comprehensive further inquiry.
documents and texts on the subjects of
project management, planning, and sched- 1.4 OTHER SOURCES OF DATA
uling that are available in the literature.
As previously noted, this guide is intended
1.3 GUIDE CONTENT as a primer. There is a considerable body of
literature on the subject of scheduling.
In order to provide a suitable context for Much of it is of an academic nature not
the topic of scheduling, Chapter 2 pro- specifically keyed to defense acquisition.
vides an overview of both program man- A number of these texts are listed in the
agement and the acquisition process and Bibliography Appendix of this guide. Ad-
the role scheduling plays in each. ditionally, an enormous amount of rel-
evant information can be secured by search-
Chapter 3 expands on the role of schedul- ing the web using some of the popular
ing in program management and addresses search engines.
the following topics: work breakdown Of particular use to PMs is the Defense
structure, integrated master plans and Acquisition Deskbook, available on the
schedules, and earned value management. Internet (http://www.deskbook. osd.mil).
It concludes with a discussion of schedule The Deskbook includes a database contain-
preparation and schedule risk. ing mandatory and discretionary policy
documents, Department of Defense and
Chapter 4 introduces the topic of schedul- component discretionary practices, soft-
ing techniques with a general discussion of ware tools and descriptions, front-line wis-
dom and advice, and sample formats.

2.1 PROGRAM MANAGEMENT For purposes of this guidebook, Program

OVERVIEW Management consists of the planning, or-
ganizing, staffing, controlling, and leading
The Department of Defense (DoD) consid- (POSCL) management functions. Other
ers program management to consist of the functions sometimes included in a pro-
tasks and activities that must be done in gram management context are scheduling,
order to design, develop, field, and sup- budgeting, monitoring, directing, and
port a weapons system. DoD directives maintaining consensus and support. For
describe an Acquisition Program as: “A this guidebook, these latter functions are
directed, funded effort that is designed to considered subcategories of the basic five
provide a new, improved, or continuing functions, when appropriate.
weapons system or automated informa-
tion system (AIS) capability in response to • Planning addresses the program mis-
a validated operational need.”1 DoD con- sion, objectives, goals, and strategy and
siders the “program” to include the ele- includes all management activities that re-
ments of the acquisition process, such as sult in selection of a course of action.
the planning, programming, and budget-
ing process, and the design, development, • Organizing considers the resources in-
and production of the system. Practically volved and how are they related. This func-
speaking, a DoD program consists of a tion addresses the alignment of people,
combination of organizational resources, funds, equipment, facilities, etc., and the
assembled to create a weapons system to structure of the organization in order to
meet a specific operational requirement. meet program goals; it identifies:

Four key considerations typically involved − Authority—The power to make final

in a program are: decisions

• Cost to produce the system, − Responsibility—The obligation to per-

form assignments
• Time required to complete the effort,
− Accountability—The state of being
• Capability/technical performance re- answerable for the completion of an
quired to meet needs, and assignment.

• Contribution of the system to the over- • Staffing addresses the qualifications

all defense operational and strategic plans. and special skills that may be required

for persons assigned to each position in felt the need to predict the cost, schedule,
the program and the time phasing of as- and performance of its new systems. Mili-
signments. tary organizations (predecessors of cur-
rent “acquisition” organizations), in conjunc-
• Controlling is the function during which tion with defense contractors, developed
the manager monitors, measures, evalu- much of the early theory and practices of
ates, and corrects program activities to en- program management as new technolo-
sure that actual operations conform to gies emerged.
The use of “task teams” or program teams
• Leading is the process whereby one and other organizational entities led to the
individual exerts his/her influence over emergence of a program management phi-
others in a group. Directing, an element of losophy for integrating activity in organiza-
leadership, is the process of implement- tions. As the program management disci-
ing, through the talents of others, the plans pline evolved, organizations developed
to meet program objectives. This includes special techniques for planning, organiz-
training, supervising, delegating, motivat- ing, staffing, controlling, and leading pro-
ing, counseling, and coordinating. grams to integrate those activities from a
focal point in the organizational structure.
In a broad sense, the planning phase in- Moreover, program management ad-
cludes the tasks associated with defining dressed the elements of technical perfor-
the work requirements, specifying the quan- mance, cost, and schedule on a continual
tity and quality of work, identifying re- rather than one-time basis in the evolution
sources, and organizing them to best carry of a program and considered them within
out the program. Likewise, the manage- the context of an organization’s operational
ment or execution phase includes the tasks of (short-term) and strategic (long-term)
monitoring progress, comparing actual to objectives.
predicted outcomes, analyzing the impact
of differences between planned and actual DoD has recently improved management
achievements, and adjusting the program with the introduction of the concept of
as necessary. Integrated Product and Process Develop-
ment (IPPD) and Integrated Product Teams
2.2 THE EVOLUTION OF (IPTs). IPPD integrates all acquisition ac-
PROGRAM MANAGEMENT tivities to optimize system development,
production, and deployment. Key to the
Formal program management came to the success of this concept are the IPTs, com-
forefront in the late 1950s. The need to posed of qualified and empowered repre-
develop and implement a management sentatives from all appropriate functional
approach to manage large-scale military disciplines who work together to identify
systems, both weapons and support sys- and resolve issues. IPTs are the founda-
tems, stimulated the government and aero- tion for program management. One of the
space industry to devise the means to plan tenets of IPPD is the use of event-driven
and execute complex programs. As the scheduling, which relates program events
cost of weapons systems increased and the to their accomplishment and accomplish-
intensity of the Cold War grew, DoD also ment criteria. Its use reduces risk by
ensuring that product and process matu- support each milestone decision by de-
rity is incrementally demonstrated prior to scribing activities and events planned for
beginning follow-on activities. the upcoming phase and relating the ac-
complishments of that phase to the
2.3 THE ACQUISITION PROCESS program’s overall, long-term objectives.
AND SCHEDULING The acquisition strategy is first formally
approved and published at MSI, Program
For the management of programs, the DoD Initiation. It provides a master schedule for
acquisition process provides a framework research, development, test, production,
that consists of a series of phases and mile- fielding, and other activities essential to
stones. The phases are a logical means of program success. This master schedule
progressively translating broad mission also serves as the basis for formulating
need statements into well-defined system- functional plans and schedules.
specific requirements and ultimately into
operationally effective, suitable, and sur- As a program evolves through subsequent
vivable systems. Each phase is designed, phases, new information becomes avail-
among other things, to manage/reduce the able that permits refinement of schedules
risks, ensure affordability, and deliver the and assignment of resources. Understand-
system to the user as soon as possible. ing of program risk becomes more specific
Milestones are the points in time where as the system under development is de-
decision makers evaluate the status of the fined, thereby allowing identification of
program and determine if the program risk-handling initiatives and their effect on
should proceed to the next phase. Prudent schedule. Schedule considerations are an
consideration of schedule implications is integral part of any Source Selection pro-
important in all phases of a program. cess, from preparation of the Request for
Proposal (RFP) through proposal evalua-
Milestone Decision Authority (MDA) and tion. After contract award, the schedule
Service acquisition officials are encouraged serves as a basis to determine progress and
to tailor programs to eliminate phases or assess the need for management action.
activities that result in little payoff in terms
of fielding time or cost. To effectively Government developers should design their
tailor a program, managers must under- contracts with industry to allow time for
stand scheduling, resource availability and milestone decisions, permit demonstration
allocation, and the risk associated with the of exit criteria in time to support milestone
tailoring. reviews and to reflect expenditure of money
with the program’s funding profile. A good
An acquisition strategy defines the busi- acquisition strategy allows fiscal control
ness and technical management approach without delaying the acquisition decisions
to meet objectives within schedule and or contracts while adequately considering
program constraints. A primary goal is to risk. In other words, it reflects thoughtful
minimize the time and cost of satisfying a schedule and resource planning.
valid need, consistent with common sense
and sound business practices. A PM pre- As a key element of the planning proess, PMs
pares a preliminary acquisition strategy at must update the schedule as more is learned
Milestone 0 and updates the strategy to about the program and as changes occur.
With each new update, program cost, time, Risk management and scheduling are
and requirements may change. PMs must closely tied. Consideration of one requires
respond by changing the mix and level of a reassessment of the other. For example,
resources and continuously updating the in creating the strategy and plans to handle
program plan and the schedule as needed. program risk, a PM must con-
sider how the approach affects the pro-
2.4 RISK MANAGEMENT AND gram schedule. Similarly, any tradeoffs
SCHEDULING between cost and performance must take
into account schedule implications. Con-
DoD defines risk management as “the act versely, any change to the program sched-
or practice of controlling risk. It includes ule must consider the impact on the overall
risk planning, assessing risk areas, devel- program objectives and on cost and perfor-
oping risk-handling options, monitoring mance. The challenge is to develop a plan
risks to determine how risks have changed, that balances risk, cost, schedule, and per-
and documenting the overall risk manage- formance.
ment program.”2 As part of their responsi-
bility to manage risk, PMs must consider Schedule risk is defined as the likelihood
risk in their planning and scheduling prac- and consequences of failing to meet the
tices. Risk management is concerned with program schedule, and it is an integral part
the identification of uncertainties that of program risk. This topic is covered in
threaten cost, schedule, and performance Chapter 3.
objectives, and the development and imple-
mentation of actions to best deal with those

DoDD 5000.1, Defense Acquisition, March 15, 1996. (Being revised and updated as of 1 January 2000)


As discussed in the previous chapters, of the program that functional plans will
scheduling is one of the most powerful lay out in greater detail and reflects the
tools available to the PM, and its effective strategy that will be followed to meet pro-
application is essential to program suc- gram objectives and to handle risk in the
cess. While it is a key element in perform- program. The acquisition strategy in-
ing all program management functions, it cludes a program structure/schedule
is also critical to the accomplishment of which depicts a visual overview and pic-
planning and controlling management ture presentation of the acquisition strat-
functions. This chapter discusses schedul- egy. This schedule is a single diagram
ing in the context of these two functions similar to the diagram shown in Figure 3-3,
and addresses the essential elements and and defines the relationship among acqui-
considerations in schedule planning. sition phases, decision milestones, solici-
tations, contract awards, systems engineer-
3.1 PROGRAM PLANNING AND ing design reviews, contract deliveries, test
SCHEDULING and evaluation activities, production re-
leases, and operational deployment objec-
Program planning is the process of deter- tives. It includes quantities to be procured
mining what needs to be accomplished, by and delivered by fiscal year by phase in
whom, when, and under what resource terms of prototypes, engineering
constraints. It is arguably the most impor- developmemt models, low-rate intitial pro-
tant of the program management functions. duction and full-rate production. The pro-
Without a sound and comprehensive plan, gram structure/schedule is a key decision
it is virtually impossible to develop a mean- review/milestone document; it summa-
ingful budget, effectively organize and staff rizes the program and is built from many
the program office, direct the actions of the other more detailed schedules found in
program office, or monitor and control the functional plans such as test and evalua-
program. In addition to determining the tion, contracting, etc. It is sometimes re-
“what, where, who, with what, and when” ferred to as the Master Program Schedule
of a program, planning also helps to iden- (MPS). In addition to this top level struc-
tify risk areas and ways to handle the risk,
ture/schedule, the PM may deem it neces-
and establishes the program baselines.
sary to have more detailed program man-
agement Integrated Master Plans (IMP) and
There are a number of products of the
Integrated Master Schedules (IMS) pre-
planning process. Among them are:
pared and submitted by the contractor
• Acquisition Strategy—This is the com- during the proposal process. See the DSMC
prehensive, integrated plan the program Acquisition Strategy Guide1 for information
on structuring, developing, and executing
will follow. It provides an overall concept
an acquisition strategy.
• Functional Plans—These are the de- Scheduling is a critical element in the plan-
tailed plans that lay out the approach to ning process. In addition to being an out-
be taken in the different functional areas. put of the process as discussed above, it
Examples include: the Test and Evalua- also contributes to the development of the
tion Master Plan (TEMP) and Command, other outputs. The early involvement of
Control, Communications, Computers, and people who are knowledgeable and experi-
Intelligence (C4I) Support Plan, which are enced in scheduling techniques can contrib-
required; and the Systems Engineering ute to the effective translation of strategic
Master Plan (SEMP), Logistics Support concepts and ideas into detailed logic dia-
Plan (LSP), etc., which are optional. grams, depicting the program activities
and relationships among activities. This
• Work Breakdown Structure (WBS)— can be very useful in developing budget
The WBS provides a basic framework for and detailed functional plans, especially
identifying each element of a project in in identifying the required resources and
increasing levels of detail. In essence, it leveling them throughout the activities.
describes the way work is performed. The
WBS also provides a coherent method for The WBS and the IMP/IMS are important
reporting progress toward plan goals. concepts used in the scheduling process
and are described in more detail in the
• Integrated Master Plan (IMP)—The following sections.
IMP is an event-based plan depicting the
overall structure of the program and the 3.2 WORK BREAKDOWN STRUCTURE
key processes, activities, and milestones.
It defines accomplishments and criteria for During the 1960s, the impetus to develop a
each event. tool to help project managers define a
project in a cohesive way gave rise to the
• Integrated Master Schedule (IMS)— development of the WBS. WBS use has not
The IMS shows the detailed tasks and been confined to the DoD and its contrac-
timing for events in the IMP and depicts tors; rather, it is now used in many com-
the logical progression of events through- mercial enterprises. Several years after the
out the program. These tasks should be emergence of the WBS concept, DoD pub-
directly traceable to the IMP and the WBS. lished a WBS standard for DoD acquisition
organizations as well as their contractors to
• Schedules—A series of schedules are use: MIL-STD-881B. This standard has been
developed during the planning process, superseded by a handbook, MIL-HDBK-
all of which are derived from the IMS. 881, dated 2 January 1998. It contains much
These schedules are developed to show of the same information as its predecessor
the details required to complete key activi- but is not directive in nature and is for
ties and milestones. guidance only.

• Budget—The budget reflects the cost MIL-HDBK-881defines a WBS as:

of the integration of the scope, schedule,
and resource plan for accomplishing the • A product-oriented family tree com-
work. posed of hardware, software, services, data,
and facilities. The family tree results from
Prime Mission System
Level 1 Level 2 Level 3
Aircraft System Air Vehicle Airframe
A/V Application S/W
A/V System S/W
Central Computer
Fire Control
Data Display and Controls
Automatic Flight Control
Central Integrated Checkout
Antisubmarine Warfare
Weapons Delivery
Auxiliary Equipment
Systems Eng/
Program Mgmt
System Test and
Evaluation Development Test and Evaluation
Operational Test and Evaluation
Test and Evaluation Support
Test Facilities

Training Equipment

Data Technical Publications

Engineering Data
Management Data
Support Data
Data Depository

Peculiar Support Test and Measurement Equipment

Equipment Support and Handling Equipment

Common Support Test and Measurement Equipment

Equipment Support and Handling Equipment

Activation System Assembly, Installation and
Checkout on Site
Contractor Technical Support
Site Construction
Site/Ship/Vehicle Conversion

Industrial Facilities Construction/Conversion/Expansion

Equipment Acquisition or
Maintenance (Industrial Facilities)

Initial Spares & Initial Spares and Repair Parts

Repair Parts

Figure 3-1. Generic Aircraft System Program WBS

systems engineering efforts during the ac- high cost or high risk. In that case, the WBS
quisition of a defense materiel item. should be taken to a lower level of
• A WBS displays and defines the prod-
uct, or products, to be developed and/or WBS's apply to seven specific categories of
produced. It relates the elements fo work defense materiel systems: aircraft; elec-
to be accoomplished to each other and to tronic/automated software; missile, ord-
the end product. nance; ship; space; and surface vehicle.
The WBS should be developed and main-
• A WBS can be expressed down to any tained based on the systems engineering
level of interest. However, the top three efforts throughout the system’s life cycle.
levels are as far as any program or contract
needs to go unless the items identified are Figure 3-1 is an example of a level 3 program
Requirement WBS Elements SOW Task

System Specification 1000 Air Vehicle 3.1 Air Vehicle (WBS 1000)
1100 Airframe Design, develop, produce
1000 Air Vehicle 1110 Wing and verify, complete air
1100 Airframe vehicles, defined as airframe
propulsion, avionics and
Wing 11n other installed equipment.

Integrated Master Plan

Management Plan Events Accomplishment Criteria
1. Preliminary Design PDR 1. a. Duty Cycle Defined
2. Review b. Preliminary Analysis Complete

Integrated Master Schedule

19XX 19XY 19XZ
Program Events PDR CDR
Detailed Tasks
1. Preliminary Design Complete
2. Duty Cycle Defined

Figure 3-2. IMP/IMS Sample

WBS for an aircraft system. The WBS ap- provides the basis for development of sub-
proach provides a powerful technique for ordinate IMPs and other functional plans.
scoping a project in a manner that provides It also identifies those events and activities
management with insight into project re- that will be included in the IMS.
quirements and performancefrom the
very top, or systems level, to the lowest The IMS is a networked multi-layered
level of definition of a work product. Plan- schedule generated by the contractor that
ning work using the WBS approach serves begins with all identified IMP events, ac-
as the basis for both estimating and sched- complishments, and criteria. It shows the
uling resource requirement. expected start and finish dates of these
events. It contains all contractually re-
3.2.1 Integrated Master Plans/ quired events/ milestones such as reviews,
Schedules tests, completion dates, and deliveries
specified in the program WBS.
The IMP is a very effective tool of program
management. It is the contractor's event- The IMP is prepared by the contractor
based plan for accomplishing the State- during the proposal process. It is main-
ment of Objectives (SOO) and Statement of tained by the government program office
Work (SOW). It identifies the key activi- and contractor through a collaborative ef-
ties, events, milestones, and reviews that fort involving all the program “stakehold-
make up the program. A program IMP is ers.” In some cases, a preliminary IMP
prepared initially by the contractor and may be developed by the government,

with industry input, during pre-solicita- corrective action. However, considering
tion. The IMP defines contract requirements schedule information alone can be mis-
stated in the RFP and contractors use it to leading. Successful management requires
develop the IMS and detailed functional the integration of the technical, schedule,
schedules. These integrated schedules tie and cost aspects of a program. Thus, some
together all program tasks by showing their form of integrated performance measure-
logical relationships and any constraints ment is needed for monitoring and control-
controlling the start or finish of each task. ling a program. The concept of earned value
This process results in a hierarchy of re- management provides such a capability.
lated functional and layered schedules
derived from the WBS that can be used for 3.3.1 Earned Value Mangement
monitoring and controlling program
progress. An example (suggested format) Earned Value Management (EVM) is the
of an IMP/IMS for an aircraft development use of an integrated management system
program is depicted in Figure 3-2. The IMS that coordinates work scope, schedule, and
should be expanded down to the level of cost goals and objectively measures pro-
detail appropriate for the scope and risk of gress toward these goals.2 The purpose of
the program. Programs with high risk EVM is to provide contractor and gov-
should show more detail in the IMS to ernment PMs with accurate data to moni-
provide the visibility necessary to manage tor program execution. It is also intended
risk. A more detailed discussion of IMS's is to provide an adequate basis for sound
contained in Appendix A. A Data Item contractor and government decision mak-
Decription (DID) has been developed by the ing by requiring that the contractor’s inter-
Department of Defense for the IMS; the iden- nal management control systems produce
tification number is DI-MISC-81183A. This data that: (1) indicate work progress; (2)
properly relate cost, schedule, and techni-
DID is at Tab 1 to Appendix A.
cal accomplishments; (3) are valid, timely,
and able to be audited; and (4) provide
DoD component managers with informa-
tion at a practical level of summarization.
The controlling function contains all those
The DoD earned value process holds the
activities that a program manager under-
contractor responsible for effective imple-
takes in attempting to ensure that the ac- mentation of an EVM system. DoD does not
tual program conforms to the developed prescribe a specific EVM system for con-
plan, to include the implementation of nec- tractors to use; instead, it has established a
essary action to get the program back on set of criteria that the contractors’ systems
the plan if possible. To control a program, must meet to be acceptable. The require-
the PM needs the means to monitor pro- ment to use an EVM system that meets the
gram progress against the established plan, criteria is dependent on the type and size
or the program baseline. In its simplest of the contract. DoD Regulation 5000.2-R
form, the program schedule can serve as a defines the contracts that must use such an
baseline against which to measure progress. EVM system as well as the criteria for an
If there are indications that an activity is acceptable system. For contracts that do
falling behind schedule, this information
can be used by the manager as a basis for
not meet these thresholds, contractor man- Analysis of these data points over time
agement information is provided to the also identifies trends that may affect or
government using a Cost/Schedule Status impact the future performance for the re-
Report (C/SSR). This report should be mainder of the contract. This is important;
based on an underlying management sys- it enables PMs to isolate causes of recur-
tem that uses an earned value approach for ring variations and to take alternative ac-
tracking progress. Such a system does not tions that will improve performance. Quan-
have to meet the EVM criteria of DoD titative techniques can also be applied to
5000.2-R; however, the government should EVM data to predict program performance
negotiate with the contractor to ensure that at completion in terms of cost and sched-
the system does emphasize earned value ule. The DSMC EVM Textbook3 provides
methodology. detailed information on the application of
EVM techniques.
Basically, earned value relates resource
planning to schedules and to technical per- Success of EVM techniques is dependent on
formance requirements. All work (identi- several things, not the least of which is
fied in the Program and Contract Work effective and accurate contractor schedul-
Breakdown Structures) is planned, bud- ing. EVM system criteria do not require
geted, and scheduled in time-phased contractors to use specific scheduling tech-
“planned value” increments constituting a niques. However, they do seek formality,
performance measurement baseline. As consistency, and discipline throughout the
work is performed, it is “earned” on the scheduling process. The contractor's sched-
same basis as it was planned, e.g., in bud- uling system:
geted dollars or labor-hours. Planned value
[budgeted cost of work scheduled (BCWS)] • Provides a summary or master sched-
compared with earned value [budgeted cost ule and related subordinate schedules
of work performed (BCWP)] measures the showing vertical traceability from the mas-
dollar volume of work planned versus the ter to the detailed schedules
equivalent dollar value of work accom-
plished. The difference, if any, is termed • Identifies key milestones and activities
the “schedule” or “accomplishment” vari- and indicates significant constraints and
ance. Earned value (BCWP) compared relationships
with the actual cost of the work performed
(ACWP) provides an objective measure- • Provides current status and forecast of
ment of cost performance. Any difference completion dates of scheduled work that
is called the cost variance. enable comparison of planned and actual
status of program accomplishments
The three data points—BCWS, BCWP, and
ACWP—are outputs of the EVM system and • Establishes a schedule baseline
are provided to the government on a monthly
basis. They, along with the schedule and cost • Provides horizontal traceability show-
variances, provide the basic information ing interrelationships among various ac-
needed to determine program status at a tivities.
given time, and to identify the elements that
are driving each of the variances.

The scheduling baseline usually con- more detailed schedule information. The
sists of a hierarchy of vertically inte- schedule for the out-year phases will be
grated schedules, with each lower-level adjusted based on the most current infor-
schedule more fully identifying and ex- mation. However, this should not be taken
panding the tasks necessary to meet the as a license to make easy changes in the
program’s objectives. Generally, three sets schedule. Every effort should be made to
of schedules are prepared: maintain the original schedule.

• Master Schedule (MS)—The top-level In all programs, there will always be a

schedule that summarizes key program requirement to make tradeoffs between
activities and milestones and depicts the cost, schedule, and performance. Cost in-
logical progression of events throughout a cludes all resources—people, money,
contract. Program Structures/Master Pro- equipment and facilities. Performance in-
gram Schedules developed by the govern- cludes quality and supportability param-
ment PM reflect information contained in eters. The best schedule supports the best
the contractor's Master Schedule. tradeoff between these competing de-
mands, taking into account the risks that
• Intermediate Schedules—The sched- are associated with each tradeoff and the
ule that ties the MS to the detailed sched- impact on the overall program.
ules. It allows for rollup of detailed sched-
ules to summary levels that are useful for The preparation of program schedules
management. should be done within a formal structure.
The procedures to be followed should be
• Detailed Schedules—The schedules at specified, to include such things as soft-
the control account or work package level. ware applications to be used, the formats
Work packages must be distinguishable for displays, and the type of symbols to be
from each other and must include definite used. Also, clear lines of authority and
start and completion dates. They are pre- responsibility should be established. The
pared by the contractor with government remainder of this section discusses the logi-
concurrence. cal steps that should be followed in pre-
paring schedules, to include sources of
3.4 SCHEDULE PREPARATION information, tools and techniques, and the
outputs of the steps. These steps are based
As stated earlier, scheduling is a critical on those described in the Program Man-
element of the planning process. Con- agement Institute’s Guide to the Program
versely, planning is critical to the devel- Management Body of Knowledge.4 While they
opment of effective schedules. Near-term present a somewhat different approach
scheduling can and should be accom- than the IMP/IMS method, they have ge-
plished in sufficient detail to support neric applicability over the range of plan-
management at each level. Far-term, or ning methods.
rolling-wave, scheduling will be less pre-
cise, accounting for the alternative paths 3.4.1 Activity Definition
that the program may take. As the pro-
gram approaches each phase, the sched- This step involves the identification and
ule for that phase will be fleshed out with definition of those activities that must be
accomplished to achieve the objectives. There are several inputs to this step:
The WBS is a logical source for such
descriptions. If a WBS is not available, • The activity list developed in the activ-
more planning must be done in order to ity definition step,
identify project activities clearly. Other
inputs to the definition step are the pro- • The product description and character-
gram scope, historical information, pro- istics,
gram constraints and assumptions, and
events required by the Planning, Program- • Mandatory constraints/dependencies,
ming, and Budgeting System (PPBS), the such as the fact that a prototype must be
requirements generation system, and DoD fabricated before it can be tested,
acquisition management process.
• Discretionary constraints/depend-
Decomposition and templates are tech- encies developed by the program manage-
niques commonly used in activity defini- ment team based on “best practices” or
tion. Decomposition involves the succes- specific sequences desired by management,
sive breakdown of program elements into
smaller, more manageable components, • External dependencies, such as avail-
which eventually describe the activities to ability of test sites, and
be scheduled. This technique is essen-
tially the same used in WBS development. • Other constraints and assumptions.
A template is an activity list or WBS ele-
ment from another similar program that A number of tools and techniques are use-
can serve as a model for the current pro- ful in developing the logic diagrams that
gram and provide a starting point for de- reflect the desired activity sequencing.
fining specific activities. They include various network scheduling
techniques that are discussed in Chapters 4
The primary output of this step is the activ- and 6. In addition, a number of scheduling
ity list, which should contain a complete software programs develop activity se-
description of each of the activities neces- quencing. Their selection and use are dis-
sary to complete the program. This list cussed in Chapter 9.
should be linked to the WBS, which should
be reviewed and revised/clarified as nec- The output of this step is a network dia-
essary to incorporate changes resulting gram that reflects the sequence of activities
from the activity definition process. Sup- based on the inputs described above. This
porting details for each activity, such as diagram should be augmented with a
constraints and assumptions, should also narrative description of the sequencing ap-
be developed and documented. proach and a detailed discussion of any
unusual or complex sequences. Activity
3.4.2 Activity Sequencing lists should be reviewed and revised to
reflect any changes necessitated by activity
This step involves the accurate identifica- sequencing.
tion of constraints/relationships among ac-
tivities and establishing the order in which 3.4.3 Activity Duration Estimating
the activities will be accomplished. Activity duration estimating is the determi-
nation of the time required to complete the requirements and availability, calendars
activities that make up the program. This that show when work can be performed,
is one of the most difficult aspects of sched- constraints, assumptions, and risk.
ule development and should be performed
by people who are most familiar with the The output of this step is a set of sched-
activity. Two key inputs to the estimation ules for the program. These include the
process are the resources required and as- master program schedule and the support-
signed for the activity and the capabilities ing detailed schedules, which should re-
of the resources assigned. Historical infor- flect the best balance possible between com-
mation from other programs and from com- peting demands of time and resources.
mercial databases can also be helpful in They should also take into account the risk
developing accurate estimates. associated with time, cost, and performance
tradeoffs and the impact on the overall
The following techniques are commonly program.
used in estimating activity durations:
A number of techniques and tools are useful
• Expert judgment guided by historical in developing schedules, many of which are
information, contained in various scheduling software
applications. Many of these applications
• Analogous estimating based on expe- contain the capability to perform various
rience of similar programs, types of mathematical analyses to calculate
theoretical start and finish dates for each
• Parametric estimating based on formu- activity based on the overall sequencing of
las describing relationships among pro- the program activities. Two of the more
gram parameters and time, and commonly known analysis techniques are
critical path method (CPM) and the Pro-
• Use of simulation to develop distri- gram Evaluation and Review Technique
butions of probable duration of each (PERT). They are discussed in greater
activity. detail in Chapter 6.

The output of this step is an estimate of the Other scheduling development techniques
likely amount of time to complete each that are commonly used focus on schedule
activity. These estimates should also in- development in light of resource (time,
clude a range of possible values, e.g., 3 people, funds, material) constraints. These
weeks ± 1 week, and a clear statement of techniques provide the means to manage the
the assumptions made in the estimation affect of these constraints through the com-
process. pression of activity duration and the leveling
of resources throughout activities. Schedule
3.4.4 Schedule Development compression and resource leveling are dis-
cussed in more detail in Chapter 6.
This step involves the development of
realistic start and finish dates for each
activity. An iterative process, schedule 3.4.5 Schedule Control
development takes into account activity
sequencing, duration estimates, resource The final step in the schedule preparation
process is to identify schedule variations and ule variations, their evaluation, and the
to manage actual changes to the developed development of corrective actions should
schedules. A schedule change control sys- be documented and made readily avail-
tem that defines the procedures by which able to members of the program’s man-
changes can be made should be established agement team, and to other programs.
and integrated into the program’s overall
change control system. The schedule 3.5 SCHEDULE RISK
change control system should address such
things as the methods of schedule perfor- In Chapter 2, we discussed the relation-
mance tracking and the approval process ship between risk management and pro-
for authorizing changes. The need for sched- gram scheduling. In this section, we dis-
ule changes can be caused by a number of cuss the risk associated with the program
factors, to include: schedule. Uncertainty exists in every
schedule. It is impossible to predict, with
• Failure to achieve planned dates for complete confidence, the length of time
specific activities or events, necessary to complete an activity, meet a
milestone, or deliver a system. Little in-
• Internal program management assess- formation exists in the early phases of a
ment and replanning, and program, and planners must rely on per-
sonal experience and the estimates of ex-
• External direction, such as reallocation perts. As a program progresses through
of funding. the acquisition cycle, more information
becomes available. Schedules developed
in the latter phases of a program are based
When evaluating these factors, it is im-
on more information and analyses, but
portant to determine what, if any, sched-
they still lack complete certainty. Uncer-
ule change is necessary. For example, if
tainty introduces the element of risk in the
an activity that is not on the critical path is
planning process. Schedule risk is the
not completed as planned, it may not have likelihood of failing to meet schedule plans
any effect on the overall program sched- and the effect of that failure.
ule. Consequently, it may not require any
significant schedule change. When creating a schedule, or when deter-
mining overall program risk, the PM must
The schedule change control system assess the risk associated with the sched-
should also include procedures for imple- ule. One technique for assessing this sched-
menting schedule changes. Such proce- ule risk involves estimate contributions
dures should address the requirement to for each activity’s duration and aggregat-
keep all program stakeholders, especially ing these distributions using a Monte Carlo
the users, advised of any significant sched- simulation or other analytical tools. The
ule changes. They should also address the resulting program-level schedule is then
process for adjusting the schedule baseline analyzed to determine the actual sched-
and the overall program plan when neces- ule risk and to identify the schedule risk
sary schedule changes are severe. The drivers.
change control system can also serve as a
good database of lessons learned. Conse- This technique uses a range of times that it
quently, information concerning sched- will take to complete each activity instead
of single-point estimates. This approach and budgets and to identification and allo-
results in a more realistic estimate of sched- cation of required resources throughout
ule risk because it accounts for much of the program activities. During this phase is
uncertainty inherent in the use of single- developed a set of integrated multi-lay-
point estimates. Their use invariably leads ered schedules that tie together all pro-
to underestimating the time required to gram activities, showing their logical rela-
complete the program and, therefore, tionships and any constraints. The level of
schedule overruns, primarily because the detail developed for these schedules de-
point estimates do not adequately address pends on program scope and risk. This
the uncertainty inherent in the individual process provides a hierarchy of functional
activities. and layered schedules that can be useful in
monitoring and controlling program
This range of values for each activity de- progress.
fines a probability distribution for the du-
ration of the activity. These distributions Effective program control depends on some
are then combined to determine the pro- form of integrated cost, schedule, and tech-
gram-level schedule estimate. This ap- nical performance management, such as
proach enables PMs to estimate early in a the earned value management system
program if there is a significant likelihood (EVMS). Effective scheduling is key to the
of overrunning the program schedule and success of this technique. EVMS criteria do
by how much. It also identifies program not dictate the use of specific scheduling
activities that are on the “highest risk path.” techniques. However, they do seek for-
mality, consistency, and discipline
This technique can be used in any acqui- throughout the scheduling process.
sition phase beginning with the comple-
tion of the first statement of work. The A five-step process for schedule prepara-
schedule probability distribution function tion that is commonly used in program/
for each key activity should be developed project management includes:
as soon as the activity is included in the
master schedule. The distribution func- • Activity definition,
tions should be periodically reviewed and
revised, if necessary, at least once per phase. • Activity sequencing,

The technique should be applied by a small • Activity duration estimation,

government-industry team consisting of
schedule analysts and technical experts • Schedule development, and
who understand the significance of previ-
ous risk performance assessments. See the • Schedule control.
DSMC Risk Management Guidebook5 or the
Defense Acquisition Deskbook, Section Risk is inherent in all programs, and sched-
for more details on the application of this uling is one element of risk. Uncertainty
technique. introduced in estimating the duration of
each activity causes most schedule risk.
3.6 SUMMARY PMs must assess the likelihood of failing
to meet schedule plans and the impact of
Scheduling is critical to the successful exe- that failure. Probabilistic techniques have
cution of the planning and controlling proven to be very useful in conducting
functions of program management. In the these assessments.
planning phase, it contributes to the
development of detailed functional plans
FY01 FY02 FY03 FY04 FY05 FY06 FY07 FY08 FY09 FY10 FY11 FY12 FY13 FY14
CE CAD System Devel & Demo
Sys Int Sys Demo Full-Rate
A Dec LRIP Prod & Deployment Operations & Support
Milestone B IPR
Reviews C FRP IOC Block II
& Phases
Prototype B C FRP IOC
Competition Block III

& Operational DT&E LFT&E
Deliveries (eng dev models) EDM LRIP Production

Figure 3-3. Program Schedule/Structure (Example)

Defense Systems Management College, Acquisition Strategy Guide, Fort Belvoir, VA, January 1998.
Defense Systems Management College, Earned Value Management Textbook, Fort Belvoir, VA, April 16, 1998,
Program Management Institute, A Guide to the Program Management Body of Knowledge, Newtown Square, PA,
Defense Systems Management College, Risk Management Guidebook, Fort Belvoir, VA, May 1999.
Information on schedule risk techniques is in the Risk Assessment Techniques of the Front Line Wisdom
& Advice portion of Section, Defense Acquisition Deskbook.


4.1 INTRODUCTION • Events or milestones, that take place at

a point in time, such as a Defense Acquisi-
Previous chapters of this guide stress the tion Board (DAB) milestone review.
point that scheduling is an intrinsic, indis-
pensable part of program management and Dependencies or constraints among activi-
a key output of the planning function of ties or events.1
that process. They also describe the rela-
tionship between the program Work Break- Currently, four types of schedules are in
down Structure and scheduling, and intro- common use and depict the categories of
duce the concepts of the Integrated Master information described above. They are the
Plan and the Integrated Master Schedule. Gantt or bar chart, the milestone schedule/
Properly prepared and accurate schedules chart, the network schedule, and the pro-
are invaluable tools in the overall manage- duction schedule. The evolution, character-
ment of programs. They provide a road istics, and uses of each of these schedules
map of where the project is going, the are described in the following paragraphs,
resources required to accomplish the vari- and a more detailed treatment of each of
ous project tasks, a means to determine them is contained in subsequent chapters.
progress, and an effective way to present
status information. This chapter contains 4.2.1 Gantt and Milestone Charts
information on the various types of sched-
ules generally in use today, their character- Gantt charts and milestone charts are nor-
istics, advantages and disadvantages, and mally combined to show a program’s
how they have evolved. Subsequent chap- schedule; therefore, they are discussed in
ters provide more detailed information on this context. The Gantt chart is used to
each of the schedule types, along with in- provide information concerning activities.
formation on the selection and use of It is commonly referred to as a bar chart,
scheduling software. since it depicts an activity as a horizontal
bar imposed over a time-line, or calendar.
4.2 SCHEDULE TYPES It shows the planned start and finish dates
for the activity and may provide informa-
Schedules can be presented in a variety of tion about task progress, including sched-
ways. Regardless of how they are dis- ule slips or gains. Figure 4-1 is an example
played, schedules essentially convey in- of a simple Gantt chart that shows the
formation concerning one (or a combina- planned schedule for four activities.
tion) of the following categories: Progress in accomplishing each activity
can be shown on each of the bars, as shown
• Activities or tasks to be accomplished by the shaded portions of activities 1 and 2.
over a period of time, and
The Gantt chart was the first formal sched- improving its utility. The Gantt chart is
uling technique developed. It dates back very useful in reporting project status and
to the early 20th century when Henry L. in managing individual activities or simple
Gantt first introduced it while working at projects with few tasks.
the Frankford Arsenal during World War
I. It was developed to provide a more Subsequent to the development of the Gantt
formal and systematic way to schedule chart, planners and managers used a simi-
tasks when time was an imprtant factor. lar approach to depict information about
significant project events, focusing on spe-
The Gantt chart has survived in its basic cific points in time. These events repre-
form to this day and continues to be sented project milestones—hence the in-
widely used as a scheduling tool at all troduction of the milestone chart. The mile-
levels within organizations. Its value stone chart shows when an event is sched-
lies in its simplicity and its ability to uled and when it is actually accomplished.
convey considerable information in a Figure 4-2 is an example of a milestone
clear and concise manner. In the past, the chart showing the status of four events;
principal shortcoming of the traditional each of these events represents the comple-
Gantt chart was its inability to clearly tion of the four activities shown in the
depict dependencies or constraints example Gantt chart in Figure 4-1.
among activities, making it difficult to
analyze schedules and optimize the allo- Like the Gantt chart, the strength of this
cation of resources to the activities. Some milestone chart as a scheduling technique
scheduling software programs now make lies in its relative simplicity and its ability
it possible to show relationships, thereby to concisely display project information,

Activity Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun

Identify User Requirements

Identify Performance Requirements

Identify Interface Requirements

Prepare SW Requirements Spec



Figure 4-1. Gantt Chart Example

Event Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun

User Requirements Identified

Performance Requirements Identified

Interface Specs Identified

SW Requirements Spec Completed



Figure 4-2. Milestone Chart Example

especially at the “big picture” level. How- Perhaps the biggest shortfall of the Gantt
ever, it does have shortcomings that limit and milestone charts is that neither of
its effectiveness in day-to-day project man- them, nor the combination of both, allow
agement. As shown in Figure 4-2, the mile- detailed schedule analysis. However,
stone chart can depict the events corre- every PM must know and understand
sponding to the completion of an activity. Gantt and milestone charts for two simple
reasons: everybody uses them, and nor-
However, it does not reflect the progress in mally, one of the first steps in the planning
accomplishing the activity. In this case, a process is to construct a schedule using a
manager relying on this milestone chart Gantt chart.
information could be surprised if the
planned completion date is not achieved. 4.2.2 Network Schedules
With no warning or indicators of schedule
slippage, the manager loses any flexibility Network scheduling was developed to
in attacking the underlying problems caus- overcome the primary shortcoming of the
ing the slippage. This shortcoming can be
Gantt and milestone charts—the inability
compensated for by the addition of interme-
to clearly portray the relationships, depen-
diate events or through the use of combined
dencies, and constraints among the project
Gantt and milestone charts. This is discussed
activities and events. A network schedule
in more detail in the next chapter.
is a graphical display of a project, includ-
Another weakness of the milestone chart is ing a representation of these relationships.
the difficulty to clearly visualize the Figure 4-3 shows an example of a network
relationships, dependencies, and con- schedule for a simple project.
straints among the various project/pro-
gram activities and events. In spite of these In this example, the lines represent project
shortcomings, the milestone chart can be activities A through H; the nodes repre-
an effective way of presenting the project sent the events associated with the begin-
or program status at higher levels of man- ning and end of the activities. The net-
agement review. work shows the following constraints




Figure 4-3. Network Schedule Example

among the activities: activity A must be was being applied to large, complex pro-
completed before activities B, C, or D can grams. The first major network schedul-
begin; B must be completed before E can ing technique developed was the Pro-
begin; F cannot begin until D is completed; gram Evaluation and Review Technique,
G cannot begin until C and E are done, and or PERT, which was used as a manage-
H cannot begin until F and G are com- ment tool for scheduling and controlling
pleted. In addition to showing this type of the Navy’s Polaris missile program. PERT
sequencing constraints, network schedules enables managers to visualize the entire
can also show the time and resources program, see interrelationships and de-
planned for each activity and thus provide pendencies, and recognize when and
managers with a mechanism to monitor where delays are acceptable. One of the
and control the project. A later chapter key features of PERT is the use of prob-
covers network schedules in detail. ability techniques to develop a set of
time estimates for each program activity,
The advent of network schedules can be making it particularly well-suited for pro-
traced back to the 1920s and the evolu- grams where it is difficult to make accu-
tion of operations research. Analysts re- rate estimates with high confidence. Con-
alized the inability to depict dependen- current with the development of PERT,
cies and constraints was a major short- the construction industry developed a
coming of existing scheduling techniques, network scheduling system based on the
and attempted to solve the problem concept of critical path. A project’s criti-
through the application of network theory. cal path is the most time-consuming route
The translation of this theory into a usable through the network activities that must
scheduling tool was hindered by the in- be completed in order to finish the project.
ability to process network-related data This approach, named Critical Path Method
in a timely fashion. The development of (CPM), was designed to focus on perfor-
the computer provided the means to au- mance time and total program cost. Some
tomate this data processing and, by the publications refer to CPM as the Arrow
1950s, the concept of network scheduling Diagram Method (ADM).
PERT and CPM scheduling techniques have In spite of the strengths of network schedul-
many similarities. For example, each shows ing techniques, there are some limitations.
the relationships among activities and The value of network schedules is directly
events, both include the project’s critical dependent on the validity of the time esti-
path, and the structure of each allows analy- mates for each activity. In addition, it is
sis of the tasks to be done, resources as- sometimes difficult to accurately portray
signed to do them, and the time associated all activities and relationships, especially
with each task. Both techniques use nodes for very large, complex programs. Thus,
to represent events (beginning and end of considerable “up front” work is required
activities) and lines to represent the activi- to develop an effective network schedule.
ties. Detailed networks, once developed, tend
to be the focus of management attention
A third network scheduling technique is the when, in fact, there will undoubtedly be
Precedence Diagram Method (PDM), which other factors not on the display that will
was developed subsequent to the PERT/ require management attention.
CPM techniques. Its function is to permit a
more accurate depiction of relationships 4.2.3 Production Schedules
among various activities than is possible
using the other two techniques. PERT/ Production scheduling involves the plan-
CPM techniques are essentially limited to ning, execution, and control of repetitive
“finish-start” relationships (i.e., activity B activities, such as the manufacture of a
cannot start until activity A is completed). large number of identical items. Efficient
The PDM technique can depict other rela- production requires the proper balance of
tionships that permit a more accurate and materials, facilities, and personnel skills.
realistic portrayal of the program’s activi- It also requires a means to monitor the
ties, such as “start-start” (i.e., activity B can- production process.
not start until activity A starts). The tech-
nique accomplishes this through the use of The Line of Balance (LOB) technique, while
nodes to depict activities and lines to depict not truly a scheduling tool, is such a moni-
relationships. These three techniques are toring technique that can provide early
discussed in greater detail in Chapter 6. warning of potential problems that can
Network scheduling techniques provide affect program schedule. It is especially
managers with a powerful tool for schedul- useful for monitoring repetitive processes
ing and controlling their programs/projects. where it is essential to balance inventory
In general, they permit the graphic por- acquisition with the production process
trayal of project activities and relationships and delivery requirements. The LOB tech-
among the activities. This provides the nique consists of four elements: (1) objec-
basis for determining the project’s critical tives of the program, i.e., contract sched-
path, predicting shortages, and identifying ule and actual deliveries; (2) production
possible reallocation of resources to solve plan; (3) current program status or inven-
problems. Through the use of readily avail- tory; and (4) a comparison between where
able software, network schedules are fairly the program is and where it’s supposed to
easy to update and rework, thus providing be, (that is, program inventories versus
managers with current program/project sta- the LOB). These elements are discussed
tus information and control over activities in more detail in Chapter 7.
and schedules.

The origin of LOB is not clear, but it is the method that allows them to meet their
believed it was developed to help manage goals. The choice of schedule type depends
defense-related contracts in the 1940s and on a number of factors, such as, the purpose
50s. It is still used today in both defense and of the schedule, its intended use, and the
commercial industry. While government decisions to be made from the information
PMs or their staffs will probably not need to presented. For example, day-to-day man-
directly develop or apply the LOB tech- agement of a project consisting of a number
nique, they should understand it and real- of related and complex activities may re-
ize that it can be a valuable tool for contrac- quire a schedule that depicts the tasks, their
tors to monitor the status of production planned duration, dependencies, progress,
contracts and to present status information. and resources allocated to each of them. If a
PM must do detailed schedule analysis of
This technique can point out problems be- this type of project, then the PM will most
fore their impact on finished product deliv- likely use a network schedule. This method
eries shows up, thereby allowing managers is the only way to use probability distribu-
to make corrections. It also allows manag- tions for time estimates rather than complet-
ers to see, in the middle of a contract, whether ing an activity and project in a certain time.
they can meet the contract schedule if they
continue working as they have been. An- On the other hand, the management of a
other advantage of LOB is that it focuses single activity may require a schedule that
attention on the production activities where reflects only the time planned for accom-
there are problems, thereby facilitating ini- plishing the task and the current status.
tiation of corrective action. Schedules showing only events, such as the
completion dates of planned activities, or
There are some limitations with the LOB bar charts may be sufficient in those cases
technique. First, it is best suited for produc- when the audience may not be concerned
tion and/or assembly-type processes that with the details of the activities.
are stable. The activities that make up the
production plan must be definable and well As a rule of thumb, Gantt and milestone
understood. Second, while this technique charts are useful to present information and
pinpoints where a problem exists, it cannot summarize program activities. They are
identify the specific problem. also usually the starting points for detailed
planning and creating a network schedule.
4.3 SUMMARY Network schedules are usually created for
detailed planning and analyses. They are
Each scheduling method has strengths and necessary to determine the feasibility of
limitations. Program Mangers must be fa- meeting program goals, assessing risk, and
miliar with all of the techniques and choose conducting sensitivity analyses.

Quentin W. Fleming, John W. Bronn, and Gary C. Humphries, Project and Production Scheduling, Chicago,
IL, Probus Publishing Co., 1987, p. 45.


5.1 DESCRIPTION There is no standard set of Gantt chart sym-

bols. Planners should define them and con-
As discussed in Chapter 4, the Gantt chart sistently use them throughout the chart. Fig-
is one of the oldest planning tools in ure 5-1 shows an example of the symbols that
existence and is still used today at all could be used in Gantt charts.
levels of project management. For ex-
ample, PMs use Gantt charts to report The schedule is displayed as a series of
information concerning program activi- horizontal bars representing the duration of
ties at milestone decision briefs, while activities. A manager may show actual
engineers may use them to manage the progress against the schedule by shading in
tasks associated with design activities. each bar as activity progresses or may use a
Because PMs often use Gantt and mile- colored bar that is parallel to the schedule
stone charts to report information to re- bar. Figure 5-2 shows a simple Gantt chart
view groups, they are treated jointly in that illustrates activities involved in devel-
this chapter. oping components of a weapons system.
This type of display can be useful for convey-
In its simplest form, a Gantt chart is a ing information about the program to those
schedule that shows the start/stop dates involved in its review or those charged with
of a program’s individual activities. It its day-to-day management.
uses symbols superimposed on a calen-
dar to provide information about the From this example, we can see that as of late
original plan, the status of the activity, March, the design, fabrication, and assembly
and any forecasted changes to the plan. of the payload are ahead of schedule, [A].

Symbol Meaning

Planned activity schedule

Status of activity

Forecasted completion behind schedule

Forecasted completion ahead of schedule

Figure 5-1. Example Gantt Chart Symbols

Activity J F M A M J J A S O N D

Payload Design [A]

[A] [B]
Payload Fabrication

[A] [C]
Payload Assembly

Test & Rework

Guidance & Control


Guidance & Control [D] [E]


Guidance & Control [E]


Guidance & Control

Test & Rework

System Integration

System Test & Rework

Figure 5-2. Example Gantt Chart

Based on this information, and an analysis guidance and control subsystem is not go-
of the activities, the PM has revised the ing as well as planned. As of late-March,
planned completion date for the payload the fabrication is well behind schedule,
fabrication, [B]. In analyzing the current [D]. After reviewing the progress and re-
status, the PM has determined that much of maining work, the PM has slipped the
the work in payload assembly will have to planned completion dates for the fabrica-
be done toward the end of the planned tion and assembly activities, [E]. They be-
activity period. (In other words, the work is lieve that it is too early to revise the planned
not uniformly distributed throughout the completion dates for test and rework, and
period.) Thus, even though this activity is the system integration and test activities.
ahead of schedule now, the PM has de- However, the slippage already experienced
cided not to revise the planned completion should serve as a warning that this entire
date for assembly and test, [C]. This Gantt development effort may be in trouble and
chart also shows that development of the will require close monitoring.
While the Gantt chart focuses on activities The important thing is that the symbols be
and their duration, the milestone chart fo- clearly defined and consistently applied.
cuses on planned significant events sched-
uled to occur at specific times in the pro- Figure 5-4 shows an example milestone
gram. Such events could be the initiation chart for the program described in the Gantt
or completion of a particularly important chart in Figure 5-2. Note that events dis-
or critical activity, equipment deliveries, played correspond to the beginning of
reviews, or approval dates. Like the Gantt some activities and the completion of all of
chart, the milestone chart uses symbols them. Other events displayed represent
imposed on a calendar to provide informa- important occurrences and key decision
tion about planned and actual completion points within each of the activities, e.g.,
dates and any revisions to the milestone preliminary and critical design reviews,
schedule. There is no standard set of sym- “make or buy” decision, etc. In this ex-
bols for milestone charts. Figure 5-3 shows ample, we see that as of late-March pay-
the symbols prescribed for reporting mile- load design has progressed on schedule,
stone information within the Air Force [A], and that planned completion date for
Material Command. Different scheduling fabrication has been revised ahead of the
software will often use unique symbols. original schedule, [B]. As discussed in the

Standard symbols have been adapted for Air Force milestone

schedules. The most common symbols used and their meanings are
shown below.
Basic Symbol Meaning

Schedule Completion

Actual Completion

Previous Scheduled Completion—Still in Future

Previous Scheduled Completion—Date Passed

Representative Uses Meaning

Anticipated Slip—Rescheduled Completion

Actual Slip—Rescheduled Completion

Actual Slip—Actual Completion

Actual Completion Ahead of Schedule

Time Span Action

Continuous Action

Figure 5-3. Example Milestone Chart Symbols


Payload Design
Begin Payload Design
Payload Preliminary Design Review (PDR)
Payload Critical Design Review (CDR)
Complete Payload Design

Payload Fabrication
Make or Buy Decision
Tooling Complete
Fabrication Complete

Assemble Payload
Begin Assembly
Delivery of Parts Complete
Assembly Complete

Payload Test & Rework

Test Plan Complete
Test Readiness Review
Test & Rework Complete

Guidance & Control Design

Begin G&C Design
Complete G&C Design

Fabricate G&C
Make or Buy Decision [C]
Tooling Complete [D]
Fabrication Complete

Assemble G&C
Begin Assembly
Delivery of Parts Complete [D]
Assembly Complete

Test and Rework

Test Plan Complete
Test Readiness Review
Test & Rework Complete

Integrate Payload and G&C

Begin Integration
Complete Integration

Test & Rework

Test Plan Complete
Test Readiness Review
Test & Rework Complete

Figure 5-4. Example Milestone Chart


Payload Design

Payload Preliminary Design Review (PDR)

Payload Critical Design Review (CDR)
Complete Payload Design

Payload Fabrication

Make or Buy Decision

Tooling Complete
Fabrication Complete

Assemble Payload

Delivery of Parts Complete

Assembly Complete

Payload Test & Rework

Test Plan Complete

Test Readiness Review
Test & Rework Complete

Guidance & Control Design

Complete G&C Design

Fabricate G&C

Make or Buy Decision

Tooling Complete
Fabrication Complete

Assemble G&C

Delivery of Parts Complete

Assembly Complete

Test and Rework

Test Plan Complete

Test Readiness Review
Test & Rework Complete

System Integration Payload and G&C

Complete Integration

System Test & Rew ork

Test Plan Complete

Test Readiness Review
Test & Rework Complete

Figure 5-5. Example Combination Chart

Jun ‘99 Jul ‘99

Activity Name Assign- Cost/

ment 7 14 21 28 5 12 19 26 Budget Cost Budget


Review existing Mary $10,000 $10,000 100%


Perform work flow James $10,000 $9,000 90%


Model process Mary, $12,000 $12,000 100%


Identify user Peter $15,000 $17,000 113%


Identify Chris $11,000 $9,500 86%


Identify interface James, $15,000 $0 0%

requirements Peter

Prepare SW All $12,000 $0 0%

Requirements Spec

Software All 0%

Figure 5-6. Gantt Chart with Amplifying Information

As discussed in the Gantt chart example, activity, is a standard feature of the par-
there are problems in the fabrication of the ticular program used to create this Gantt
guidance and control subsystem. One of chart.1 The Assignment, Cost, and Cost/Bud-
the events selected as a milestone was the get ratio columns are not standard features
completion of the tooling necessary for but were added to the database to demon-
fabrication. From the example, we see that strate how the charts may be customized to
this event experienced an actual slip of meet individual needs. Note that the user
approximately one month, [C]; this, in turn, may create computation fields, such as the
has caused the Program Manager to revise percentage and totals fields shown in the
the scheduled completion dates for fabri- figure.
cation, parts delivery, and assembly, [D].
Managers rarely use pure Gantt or mile- MILESTONE CHARTS
stone charts. Normally they integrate the
information from these charts and display Gantt and milestone charts are relatively
it in a combination chart. Such a chart can easy to construct when compared to the
be useful in displaying the planned and complexity of network charts. The first
actual duration of activities using the Gantt step is to decide the level at which the
chart symbols and in monitoring the project is to be planned, tracked, and re-
progress for completing key events in these ported. This decision should consider such
activities using the milestone symbols. Fig- things as the needs of the entire project
ure 5-5 is a combination chart showing the team, and the degree of risk associated
activities and events described in Figures with the various program activities. Most
5-2 and 5-4. likely there will be a need to manage and
track at a low level and report at a higher
Whereas the simple Gantt, milestone, or level. Current scheduling software has the
combination charts may be suitable for capability to handle activities at various
reporting program status, most managers program levels allowing insight and man-
need additional information to plan, moni- agement at the lower levels and permitting
tor, and control activities. New software roll up of information at higher levels for
applications increase the utility of these reporting purposes. To accomplish this,
charts by making it easy to add informa- charts must be developed in a logical and
tion, such as budget, cost, resources, etc. consistent manner.

Today’s programs use databases to store The next step in constructing the charts is
related schedule information and then al- the identification of activities and mile-
low users to filter, sort, and display infor- stones to be displayed, tracked, and moni-
mation in a variety of ways. They also tored. The WBS should be used as the
allow users to tailor the software to their primary source for this identification. If a
needs by adding customized information WBS is not available, or if it does not go
to the database. Figure 5-6 shows how to down to the necessary level, additional
display the relationship of one activity with planning must be done to clearly define
another by drawing lines between related and identify activities to be managed,
activities. The Budget column, in which the tracked, and reported. Other sources for
manager enters the budgeted cost for the identifying activities and events include
the Acquisition Strategy, the Acquisition 5.3.2 Disadvantages
Program Baseline, the Risk Management
Plan, and the Integrated Management Plan, (1) Difficult to use for detailed sched-
and the Integrated Management Plan. ule analysis

5.3 GANTT AND MILESTONE (2) Do not show the effects of late or
CHART ADVANTAGES AND early activity starts

Gantt and milestone (or combination) charts (3) Do not represent dependencies
provide a simple, effective means to among activities as well as other schedul-
present project information, and a way to ing methods
monitor and control smaller projects. Us- (4) Do not reflect the uncertainty in the
ing these charts as scheduling tools has planned activity duration or event date
many advantages, but also limitations that
should be understood. These pros and (5) Only as reliable as the estimates on
cons are presented below. Evolving sched- which they are based; looking at the chart
uling software includes features that over- doesn’t indicate which estimates are the
come some of the shortcomings to varying most reliable
(6) Do not allow quick or easy explora-
5.3.1 Advantages tion of the consequences of alternative ac-
(1) Simple to prepare and update,
(2) Information portrayed in easily un- MILESTONE CHARTS ARE
derstood format, EMPLOYED

(3) Relatively inexpensive to prepare Gantt and milestone charts are best used
using software tools, for displaying the planned activities and
events of a project and the progress in
(4) Relate activities and calendar dates, meeting them. This makes them very use-
ful for presenting schedule and program
(5) Easy to roll up information into status information in a concise simple for-
summary form, mat at such things as programor activity
(6) Useful first step for preparation of
more complex type schedules Because of its simplicity and ease of inter-
pretation, it is a particularly good tool for
(7) Reliable estimates can be developed communicating to higher management
when the work is repetitive and when the when information must be presented
product is easy to measure quantitatively. quickly and efficiently. These charts may

also be sufficient for management and con- 5.5 SUMMARY
trol of simple projects. However, they
have limited utility for managing more As scheduling tools, Gantt and milestone
complex projects, since they do not easily charts provide a simple and effective means
capture interrelationships among activi- for displaying actual versus planned
ties and events or reflect the uncertainty progress of a program and for showing
associated with time and resource esti- schedule changes that have occurred. The
mates. Generally, they do not provide the major drawback of Gannt and milestone
level of information necessary for the effec- charts is the limited degree fo detail and
tive monitoring and control of such projects. dependency information they can portray.
However, recently developed software
scheduling applications now make it pos-
sible to show more of the relationships
among project activities and events.

This figure is an adaptation of sample charts from Fast Track Schedule sample charts.


6.1 DESCRIPTION ing the overall scheduled completion date

for the program?
Driven by the increase in project complex-
ity, managers developed the need for better • Among program tasks, where should
schedule and control methods than those management efforts be concentrated at
provided by Gantt and milestone charts. any particular time?
The shortcomings of these charts gave rise to
network scheduling. Over time, different Networks are a graphical portrayal of the
applications of network theory were devel- activities and events of a project. They show
oped to address the needs of managers. how each activity relates to others in the
Today, essentially three networking tech- project, the sequence of activities, and the
niques are in use: the Program Evaluation need to perform some tasks before others.
and Review Technique (PERT); the Critical Figure 4-3 is an example of an ADM network
Path Method (CPM) [these two techniques schedule. Networks also facilitate the deter-
are also known as Arrow Diagram Methods mination of the impact of early or late starts
(ADM)] and the Precedence Diagram or finishes, provide information about the
Method (PDM). Each is discussed later in allocation of resources, and allow managers
this chapter. to do “what if” analyses. With this informa-
tion, managers may view the status of the
All of these techniques provide the manager plan, analyze progress, and evaluate alter-
with powerful tools to plan, analyze, moni- natives.
tor, and control the project and to manage
the resources necessary to accomplish project To apply these networking techniques, the
tasks. They can help the manager answer following conditions must exist:
the following questions:
• All program activities must be clearly
• When is each activity or task of the defined, including identifiable start and
program scheduled to begin and end? completion points.

• Which activities must be finished on • A logic diagram showing the sequence

time to avoid missing the scheduled pro- and interrelationships of activities must be
gram completion date? developed.

• Can resources be shifted to critical • The time to complete each activity

parts of the program (those that must be must be estimated as accurately as pos-
completed on time) from non-critical parts sible.
(those that can be delayed) without affect-

Accomplishing these things may require estimated times could be compared against
considerable effort and the involvement of actual completion times in a number of cases,
people familiar with the overall project and the variation would look like the curve in
those responsible for executing various Figure 6-1.
groups of activities. This up-front effort
provides an understanding of project re- The expected time, t is the weighted aver-
quirements and early identification of po- age, or mean time, for an activity based on
tential problem areas. the beta distribution and is determined from
the following formula:
6.1.1 PERT
a + 4m + b
In 1958, the U.S. Navy introduced the con- t = 6
cept of network scheduling techniques by
developing PERT as a management control Using the expected times and other statisti-
system for the development of the Polaris cal properties of the beta distribution for
missile program. The focus of PERT was to each activity, it is possible to determine an
give managers the means to plan and con- expected time for completion of the project
trol processes and activities so the project and the likelihood (probability) that this ex-
could be completed within the specified time pected completion time will be met. It is also
period. The Polaris program involved 250 possible to determine the critical path for the
prime contractors, more than 9,000 subcon- project—the most time-consuming path
tractors, and hundreds of thousands of tasks. through the network activities and events to
project completion. Any delay on this path
PERT was introduced as an event-oriented, will delay the completion of the project.
probabilistic technique to increase a PM’s
control in projects where time was the criti- PERT is most useful when it is difficult to
cal factor and time estimates were difficult either accurately estimate the time required
to make with confidence. The events used in for project activities or to determine the per-
this technique represent the start and finish centage of work accomplished within an
of the activities. PERT uses three time esti- activity. The percentage of work accom-
mates for each activity: optimistic, pessi- plished can be especially important when
mistic, and most likely. From these esti- analyzing the adequacy of resources applied
mates, an expected time is calculated based to an activity. Projects best suited for PERT
on a beta probability distribution for each are one-of-a-kind complex programs that
activity. The developers of PERT chose the involve new technology or processes and
beta probability distribution because it could research and development.
accommodate nonsymmetrical situations.
They assumed that the probability of an Fllowing the success of the Polaris program,
estimate being too optimistic would not be PERT became widely used throughout the
equal to the probability that the same esti- systems acquisition community, to include
mate would be too pessimistic. That is, if attempts to combine it with cost data or

of Meeting

a m b
Most Most Most
Optimistic Likely Pessimistic
Time Time Time

Figure 6-1. Beta Distribution with PERT Time Estimates

other non-scheduling aspects of program the manager is better able to assess problems
management. As a result, PERT became so as the program evolves.
cumbersome that the cost of maintaining it
far outweighed the benefit. Consequently, 6.1.2 CPM
the use of PERT declined and, by the 1970s,
it was only occasionally employed in de- The CPM scheduling technique was intro-
fense system programs. Over the last few duced at approximately the same time as
years, it has again become relatively popu- PERT. It was developed by J. E. Kelly of
lar, particularly in the private sector. ThisRemington-Rand and M. R. Walker of
resurgence is due, in part, to the develop- DuPont to aid in scheduling maintenance
ment of PERT software or other networking shutdowns in chemical processing plants.
software programs that can be run on micro- Over the years, CPM has enjoyed more use
computers. than any other network scheduling tech-
nique. It is based on the concept of critical
In spite of misuses that have occurred in path and was designed to focus on the time
PERT applications, the technique can be a and resources, particularly cost, necessary
very useful tool because it enables the man- to complete the activities of a project.
ager to visualize the entire program, see
interrelationships and dependencies, and Although CPM and PERT are conceptually
recognize when delays are acceptable. Thus, similar, some significant differences exist,

most as a result of the type of projects best completed, the following procedures are
suited for each technique. As discussed applied:
earlier, PERT is better to use when there is
much uncertainty and when control over • Complete and annotate the cumula-
time outweighs control over costs. PERT tive time required to reach each node along
handles uncertainty of the time required to the paths—This will indicate the earliest
complete an activity by developing three time work can start on the next activity. The
estimates and then computing an expected final number will indicate total time required
time using the beta distribution. CPM is to complete a particular path.
better suited for well-defined projects and
activities with little uncertainty, where ac- • Identify the critical path—This is the
curate time and resource estimates can be sequence of events, or route, taking the long-
made, and the percentage of completion of est time to complete.
an activity can be determined. In CPM,
because of the greater certainty, a single • Starting at the program completion
time estimate is used. This estimate is the node on the right side of the diagram, begin
time planned for the activity under normal working backward and compute the latest
conditions; it approximates the most likely time an activity can start without delaying
time estimate in PERT. The normal cost the overall program—For example, if the
estimate is the cost associated with finishing total program takes 40 weeks and the final
the program in the normal time. A second activity requires 5 weeks, this activity can-
time and cost estimate, the crash estimate, is not begin later than week 35. For CPM, the
also used in the CPM technique. The crash difference between the latest and earliest
time estimate is the time that will be re- start of an activity is the slack or float. The
quired to finish an activity if a special effort critical path contains no slack or float time.
is made to reduce program time; crash cost For PERT, the difference between the earli-
is the cost associated with performing the est event time and the latest event time at
effort on a crash basis so as to reduce the time each event is the slack/float time.
to completion. This is discussed in more
detail with a later example. The use of these procedures is illustrated in
a later example.
CPM is activity-oriented, concentrating on
activity start (early start, late start) and fin- 6.1.3 PDM
ish times (early finish, late finish); whereas
PERT is event-oriented, concentrating on PDM is an activity-oriented technique that
early event time and late event time. The was developed subsequent to PERT and
network diagrams used for CPM and PERT CPM. The impetus behind this develop-
are essentially the same (see Figure 4-3), as ment was the need for greater flexibility in
are the procedures for using them. As dis- dealing with relationships and constraints
cussed earlier, certain actions are essential to between project activities.
applying network scheduling techniques.
The activities/events composing the project, PERT/CPM, or the arrow diagram method
the relationships among them, and their time (ADM), essentially treats all relationships as
estimates must be identified, and a network “finish-to-start” constraints; that is, Activity
diagram developed. Once the diagram is A must be completed before Activity B can
begin. There are ways within PERT/CPM to such lags are the time required for the move-
circumvent this limitation, but they are cum- ment of parts or components from one activ-
bersome and add more complexity to the ity site to another, or the time involved in
technique. the reallocation of resources—people, equip-
ment, and facilities. Figure 6-3 shows ex-
The PDM technique provides the capability amples of constraint lags and how they can
to treat other types of relationships that oc- be depicted. These lags could be repre-
cur in complex projects. Figure 6-2 shows sented as activities in the ADM technique,
examples of these types of relationships or but this could add needless complexity to
constraints. the schedule. The use of lags in the PDM
technique is much less complicated.
In addition to depicting different rela-
tionships between activities, PDM also PDM uses the same underlying principles as
handles time lags that would normally oc- the other networking techniques: clearly
cur as the project progresses. Examples of defined activities, accurate time estimates,

Symbols Constraint

A B B cannot start until A is finished—
normal PERT/CPM constraint

A Finish-to-Finish
B cannot finish until A is finished

B cannot start until A starts

B cannot finish until A is started
(Rarely used)

Percent Complete
70% Remaining 40% of B cannot be
40% started until 70% of A is completed

Figure 6-2. Example PDM Relationships/Constraints

critical path, etc. The difference between lines. In PDM, the nodes represent the
PERT/CPM (ADM) and PDM is in the way estimates, early and late start and finish
the network is portrayed. In PERT/CPM, dates, and other appropriate information
the network nodes represent the events as- are normally shown in the boxes. Figure 6-
sociated with activities (i.e., the beginning 4 is an example of an activity node. The lines
and end of activities), and the connecting connecting the nodes represent the relation-
lines represent the activities and the rela- ships between the activities, e.g., finish-to-
tionship/constraints. Activity time and re- start, start-to-start, etc. The use of PDM is
source estimates are normally shown on the demonstrated in a later example.

Symbols Constraint

Lag + 5 days Finish-to-Start with Lag

A B B cannot start until 5 days after A
is completed

Start-to-Start with Lag
B cannot start until 7
days after A has started
Lag + 7 days

Finish-to-Start with Negative Lag

Lag - 5 days
A B B cannot start until 5 days before A
is completed

Figure 6-3. Example PDM Constraints with Lag Time

Early Start Time Early Finish Time

7/12/99 7/15/99

3 Days

Activity Identification


Late Start Time Late Finish Time

7/14/99 7/17/99

Figure 6-4. Example PDM Activity Node

6.2 NETWORK SCHEDULING • Show resources associated with ac-
ADVANTAGES AND tivities and time.
Network scheduling techniques provide the
mechanisms necessary to conduct a system- • Network construction can be diffi-
atic, disciplined, and thorough review of cult and time consuming.
what will be required to conduct and com-
plete a project. Such an approach is essential • Only as sound as the activity time
for large, complex projects and is also useful and resource estimates.
in managing smaller, less complicated
projects. The advantages and disadvantages • Sometimes difficult to portray
of these techniques are identified below. graphically—too many lines, nodes and
• Not particularly good for conveying
• Provide graphical portrayal of pro- information in briefings/reviews.
ject activities and relationships/con-
straints • Complex networks, once sketched out
on a large wall chart, tend to become the
• Force communications among team focus of management attention when, in
members in identifying activities fact, a manager should be paying attention
to factors not on the chart, such as manage-
• Organize what would otherwise be ment/labor relations.
confusing material, making it easier for man-
agers to make tradeoffs and develop alter- 6.3 HOW AND WHEN NETWORK

• Provide capabilities to evaluate Network scheduling techniques can be very

progress and control project useful in complex projects that involve new
technologies or processes and that are not
• Allow managers to predict shortages repetitive, such as production. They are not
and act on them early particularly easy to use for presentations
because of their complexity; however, they
• Once prepared, permit easy update can be used as the basis for other scheduling
and rework techniques that are more suitable for presen-
tation of information, i.e., Gantt or mile-
• Give managers more control over stone charts.
activities/events and schedules
Government managers may not use net-
• Facilitate “what if” exercises work techniques in the day-to-day manage-
ment of their programs. However, they
• Provide the basis for Gantt and should have an understanding of the tech-
milestone chart information niques to ensure that contractors are using
them when appropriate.
The different types of network scheduling Path A-B-E-H=2+3+2+4=11 weeks
techniques have many similarities. How-
ever, each of them provides different types Path A-C-F-H=2+4+3+4=13 weeks
of information that can be useful to manag-
ers in evaluating progress, developing Path A-D-G-H=2+8+9+4=23 weeks
alternatives, and managing the allocation of
resources within their projects. The follow- Thus, path A-D-G-H is the critical path
ing examples show the types of information since it requires the greatest time. Any
resulting from each technique and how man- delay along this path will cause a delay in
agers may use them. project completion. The other paths are
shorter completion. The other paths are
6.3.1 PERT EXAMPLE shorter than the critical path and, therefore,
contain activities that can be completed be-
Figure 6-5 shows a PERT network for a fore they are required. Therefore, delays
project containing 8 activities (A-H), with along these paths may not result in delays in
the nodes 1-7 representing the beginning project completion. In the above example,
and end of the activities. The three time critical path activities, D and G, will require
estimates discussed earlier in this chapter 17 weeks to complete. On path A-B-E-H,
are shown for each activity. For example, for activities B and E will require 5 weeks to
Activity A, the time estimates are optimistic complete. Thus, there will be 12 weeks of
time=1 week, most likely time=2 weeks, and slack along that path. Actually, this slack is
pessimistic time=3 weeks. The expected only along path B, E since A and H are on the
time estimate for each activity, t, as derived critical path. Likewise path C-F has 10 weeks
from the formula associated with Figure 6-1, of slack time. This concept of slack time,
is also shown. From this information, the sometimes called float time or path slack/
project critical path can be computed by float, is important because it allows manag-
adding the time estimates along all paths ers to reschedule activities not on the critical
leading to project completion. In this ex- path to use resources efficiently.
ample, the critical path is determined as

(2, 3, 4) (1, 2, 3)
t=3 B E t=2

1 (1, 2, 3)
2 (3, 4, 5)
4 (2, 3, 4)
6 (3, 4, 5)
t=2 t=4 t=3 t=4

(7, 8, 9) (8, 9, 10)
t=8 t=9

Figure 6-5. PERT Example

The following description of how slack time TE for node 3 is the value of TE from node 2
is computed is intended to illustrate the (TE=2) plus the duration of Activity B; for
concept that managers can use it to their node 3, TE=5.
advantage. Fortunately, software programs
compute slack time and managers do not To determine the latest starting times for
have to make these calculations. each activity, begin at the completion of the
project and work backward through the ac-
Slack time should be computed for each tivities. Since Activity H is on the critical
activity in the network. One way of doing path, its value of TL=19. Activity E is not on
this is by comparing the earliest time an the critical path so its value of TL (shown on
activity can begin, TE, to the latest time the node 3) is the difference between TL at node
activity can begin, TL. The difference is the 6 and the time estimate for Activity E, TL=19-
activity slack time. For all activities on the 2=17. The activity slack is the difference
critical path, TE and TL have the same value. between TE and TL at each node. For Activity
To determine the values of TE and TL for each E, the slack is TL-TE=17-5=12 weeks. This
activity, start with the node representing the activity could start anytime between weeks
beginning of the first activity and assign it a 5 and 17 without any adverse impact on the
value of TE=TL=0. Follow the critical path critical path. Activity B is not on the critical
and add the activity time estimate to the path so its value of TL is the difference be-
value of TE of the preceding node to get the tween TL at node 3 and the time estimate for
value of TE for the next node. For example, Activity B (17-3=14). This is not shown at
the node at the completion of Activity A and node 2, since that node also represents the
the beginning of Activity D has a value of start of Activity D, which is on the critical
TE=TL=2. Figure 6-6 shows how TE and TL path. The slack for Activity B is TL-TE=14-
can be depicted on a network chart. Con- 2=12. (The same approach is used to deter-
tinue along the critical path to node 7, which mine the slack for Activity C.) Slack is not
has a value of TE=TL=23, the time required to additive along a path; it must be shared by
complete the project. Next, compute the all activities on the path. Thus, if Activity B
values for TE for the remaining activities and starts at week 5 instead of week 2, Activity E
nodes not on the critical path. The value of would have only 9 weeks of slack available.

(2, 3, 4) (1, 2, 3)
t=3 B E t=2
TE=0 TE=2 TE=6 TE=19 TE=23
TL=0 TL=2 TL=16 TL=19 TL=23
1 2 4 6 7
(1, 2, 3) (3, 4, 5) (2, 3, 4) (3, 4, 5)
t=2 t=4 t=3 t=4

(7, 8, 9) (8, 9, 10)
t=8 t=9

Figure 6-6. PERT Example with Slack Time

Similarly, Activities C and F have a slack of time and crash estimates for each of the
10 weeks. activities.

The concept of slack and TE and TL can be The critical path for the CPM approach is
very useful to managers, providing the basis determined in the same way as in the PERT
for resource allocation and also providing example. While the concept of slack time
the means to determine the probability of is essentially the same as in PERT, it is nor-
meeting the project schedule. This latter mally calculated in a different manner using
topic is beyond the intended scope of this four different values for each activity:
guidebook; however, a number of available
books provide detailed discussion of the • Earliest time the activity can start, ES
application of PERT techniques. (See the
bibliography in Appendix D.) • Earliest time the activity can finish, EF

6.3.2 CPM EXAMPLE • Latest time an activity can start, LS

As discussed earlier, PERT and CPM are • Latest time an activity can finish, LF.
conceptually similar, in that both techniques
use the same type of network structure, and To compute ES, start at the first activity and
the concepts of critical path and slack time. move forward through the network paths.
The following example will be used to illus- The earliest Activity A can start is at t=0.
trate basic application of the CPM technique. The earliest that it can finish is ES plus the
Figure 6-7 shows the same project as used in activity duration; thus for A, ES=0 and EF=2.
the PERT example, with the single time esti- The earliest start for subsequent activities is
mates for each activity. Table 6-1 shows the the EF of the preceding activity. For Activity

, 5) 2 (5
(2 7) (1 , 7
B 4, 1 7, )
(1 19
3 )
A (ES=0, EF=2) C (2, 6) F (6, 9) H (19, 23)
1 2 4 6 7
2 (LS=0, LF=2) 4 (12, 16) 3 (16, 19) 4 (19, 23)
D )
(2 19
,1 1 0, 9)
0 ( 1
, 10 ) G (10,
) 9

Figure 6-7 CPM Examples

B, ES=2. The earliest finish time for each managers with information to effectively
activity is the earliest start time plus the activ-
manage their projects. Using percent of
ity duration. For Activity B this is EF=2+3=5. work completed or that is remaining on
When activities converge, such as E, F, and G ongoing activities, they can compare the
at node 6, the earliest starting time for the next
progress at a certain time with the original
activity is the latest value of EF of the preced-plan. Based on this information, they can
ing converging activities. develop revised time and cost estimates for
these activities and forecast new start and
To compute the latest times, make a back- completion dates for remaining activities
ward pass through the network, beginning and a new project completion date. They
with the last activity. The date to begin the can then use the new forecast dates to deter-
pass can be either an established required mine action that can be taken and the appro-
date or the early finish date for the project priate resource planning and reallocation, if
completion. The latest starting date for the necessary.
final activity is determined by subtracting the
activity duration from the date used to begin The CPM technique provides managers with
the pass. For subsequent activities, the latest the means to investigate ways and impacts
finish date is the same as the latest starting of speeding up, or crashing, the schedule.
date for the preceding activity. In the back- As part of the planning process, a set of crash
ward pass, the value of LF for an activity that estimates should be developed if possible.
precedes a set of diverging activities in the The estimates for this example are shown in
network (activity A in the example) is the Table 6-1.
earliest of the values of LS of the diverging
activities (B, C, D). This table shows the time and cost estimates
and the crash cost per week. To crash a
The values of ES, EF, LS, and LF for all activi- schedule, some key points must be consid-
ties are shown in Figure 6-7. With this infor- ered:
mation, one can determine the slack for each
activity. Slack is determined using the fol- • Crash only along the critical path.
lowing formula: Slack=LF-EF=LS-ES.
• When an activity is shortened, one or
The relative certainty of time and resource more new critical paths may emerge.
estimates enables managers to determine the
percent of work completed in each activity as • Parallel critical paths increase risk
the project progresses. Being able to estimate dramatically.
the percent of completion provides manag-
ers with the means to redistribute resources if • Generally, least additional cost is the
an activity is falling behind schedule. For criterion used to select which activity to
example, if an activity has fallen behind sched- crash, but other considerations (e.g., per-
ule, it is possible to estimate the work remain- sonnel hours) could be used.
ing and the cost of applying additional re-
sources to complete the activity on schedule. In this example, assume that the project must
Network scheduling techniques, particularly be crashed by 4 weeks at the least additional
CPM, used on projects with relatively cer- cost. Looking at the activities on the critical
tain time and cost estimates can provide path, select the one with the lowest weekly
Table 6.1 "Crashing" the Network
Time Estimates
Per Cost ($) (Accelerated Min
Activity Activity Critical Per add'l time reqd Crash
Number (wks) Path Activity/wk cost/week) per Activity Priority

A 2 Yes $4,000 $6,000 2

B 3 No $2,000 $600 3

C 4 No $3,000 $400 2
D 8 Yes $5,000 $3,000 6 (-2 days x
$3,000 per day)
E 2 No $1,500 $700 2 =$6,000

F 3 No $2,500 $650 3

G 9 Yes $20,000 $5,000 7 2d (-2 days x

$5,000 per day)
H 4 Yes $8,500 $6,000 3 = $10,000


Note: Example same as Figure 6-7

crash cost; in this case it is Activity D, which (duration=2) will require 6 weeks to com-
can be crashed from 8 to 6 weeks for an plete. However, Activity D can not be com-
additional $6,000. Next, crash Activity G by pleted until Activity C is finished, which is 9
2 weeks at a cost of $10,000. Reducing both weeks (5 weeks for Activity A and 4 weeks
of these activities does not change the criti- for C). The difference between the 9 and 6
cal path. weeks (i.e. 3 weeks) must be added to the
time to complete Activity D when determin-
6.3.3 PDM EXAMPLE ing the critical path. This is shown below in
the parenthetical term for Path B-D-G-I. The
The PDM technique focuses on program critical path for this example is determined
activities and the meaning of the constraints as follows:
among activities. This technique is used in
many scheduling software applications, and Path A – C – F – I = 5 + 4 + 5 + 3 = 17 weeks
it relies on the same concepts—critical path,
slack time, etc., as the other network sched- Path B–D–G–I = 4+(2+3)+2+3 = 14 weeks
uling techniques.
Path B–E–H–I = 4+5+2+3 = 14 weeks
Figure 6-8 shows a PDM network for a project
with Activities A–I. (Assume that the unit of Thus, Path A-C-F-I is the critical path.
working time (duration) is one week.) Note
that Activity B cannot start until Activity A The slack times for the activities are deter-
starts, and Activity D cannot end until Ac- mined in the same way as in the CPM tech-
tivity C ends. The critical path is determined nique, using earliest and latest start and
in essentially the same way as in other net- finish times, ES, EF, LS, LF. Earliest times are
works. In PDM, however, one must account computed by making a forward pass through
for the different types of constraints. In this the networks paths, and latest times are
example, Activities B (duration=4) and D determined making a backward pass. Fig-
ure 6-9 shows the PDM network with these on their path. If Activity B uses 3 weeks of
values, using the activity format shown in slack, none will be left for either path.
Figure 6-4. The values of ES, EF, LS, and LF
in Figure 6-9 represent the beginning of the The above example assumes that progress-
unit of work time, in this case a week; e.g., ES ing from one activity to the next requires
for Activity A is the beginning of week 1, zero time, which in most projects is unreal-
while EF is the beginning of week 6. (The istic. The concept of lag time can be used to
beginning of week 6 corresponds to the end incorporate the time required to transition
of week 5.) The earliest and latest finish from one activity to another, such as ma-
chine set-up time or movement of material,
dates for this project , Activity I, is the begin-
ning of week 18, or the end of week 17. Using parts, or components from one site to an-
the formula for slack, other. Lag time can be shown on the net-
work and must be accounted for in deter-
Slack = LS – ES = LF – EF, mining critical path and values of ES, EF, LS
and LF. Figure 6-10 shows that in moving
we see that on path B – D – G – I, activities B, from Activity D to Activity G, there will be a
D, and G each have a slack of 3 weeks. This lag of 1 week. The figure also shows the
slack is not additive; if Activity D starts at effect of this lag time on the earliest and
week 9 vice week 8, then Activity G has only latest start times and on finish times. The
2 weeks of slack remaining. We also see that resulting slack for Activities D and G is now
Activities B, E, and H have 3 weeks of slack 2 weeks. This example shows that the PDM

5 4 5

4 2 2


5 2

Figure 6-8. PDM Example

1 6 6 10 10 15
5 4 5

1 6 6 10 10 15

1 5 8 10 10 12
4 2 2
15 18

4 3
8 11 13 13 15
Legend 5 10 10 12
ES EF 5 2 15 18

8 13 13 15

Figure 6-9. PDM Example—Early and Late Start and Finish Times

1 6 6 10 10 15
5 4 5

1 6 6 10 10 15

1 5 8 10 11 13
4 2 2
15 18

4 3
8 10 12 13 15
Legend 5 10 10 12
ES EF 5 2 15 18

8 13 13 15

Figure 6-10. PDM Example with Lag Time

Note: The numbering convention used in this PDM network is similar to the CPM network in Figure 6-7; it is
described on page 46. Each computer scheduling program uses one (or gives a choice) of methods to relate
duration to the time unit.

technique provides considerably greater flex- and earliest and latest start and finish times,
ibility in handling different types of con- represented as the beginning of the unit of
straints than does ADM (PERT and CPM). work time (week).
Consequently, it is better suited for use in
complex projects, particularly those with To determine the adequacy of resources
many parallel activities and constraints other (people in this example), assume that each
than finish-to-start. activity will start as early as possible and
determine the resource requirements over
6.4 NETWORK SCHEDULING WHEN time. Figure 6-12 shows the personnel load-
RESOURCES ARE LIMITED ing requirements by time for the duration of
the program. During week one, 11 people
In the previous discussion, the assumption are required to work on activities A, B, and
was that a new activity could start as soon as C. Now, let’s suppose only nine people
any constraints were satisfied because suffi- are available to work during this 11 week
cient resources were available to perform period. The chart shows there will not be
the work. In practice, however, resources to sufficient workers during the first, fourth,
proceed are not always available. and fifth weeks. There will be sufficient
workers to perform the work
In those situations, Program Managers can scheduledduring the second and sixth week.
take one or more different actions to reduce During the third and seventh throughout
the adverse impact on the program. Those eleventh weeks, there will be a surplus of
actions include: workers for the work scheduled. The task
becomes one of rearranging the schedule so
• Adding additional resources that, insofar as possible, the peaks and val-
leys are evened out without scheduling more
• Reducing the scope of the program work than nine people can do. In this ex-
ample, this rearrangement can be accom-
• Adjusting the schedule to accommo- plished quickly by hand. However, with
date the resource shortfall many activities, it becomes very difficult to
find the optimum answer. Fortunately,
In this section, we show how network sched- scheduling software applications are avail-
ules and the concepts of critical path and able to assist in solving the problem. Re-
slack (float) can be applied to make better gardless of the approach used (manual or
use of limited resources. Figure 6-11 shows automated), the resource-leveling process is
a PDM network with activities A through J. an iterative step-by-step process using a set
Each node of the network shows the number of rules to establish the priority of the activi-
of people required to complete the activity ties requiring the constrained resource, and
along with the activity duration (in weeks) the actions to be taken.

1 3
3 4 5
8 10
9 10
4 6 6 10 10 12

2 4 2
1 4 6 5
3 4
4 6 6 10
B 10 12
6 4 5 5 7

1 4 1 2
3 4
7 8 8 10
4 6
1 2 4
1 8 10
9 10

Figure 6-11. Network Schedule with Constrained Resources

14 D
13 Personnel Shortage
12 H
People Required

10 E
A Personnel Available
7 E Personnel
6 F
B Surplus
5 G
3 B B
2 J J
1 C
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11
Time (Weeks)

Figure 6-12. Personnel Loading Chart

As discussed earlier, the concept of float (or nel shortage as the project progresses. It may
slack) can be useful in the efficient allocation not always be possible to rearrange the sched-
of resources, and it should be considered in ule to stay within the resource constraints.
establishing the rules to be followed. The In those cases, other steps, such as adding
float demonstrated in earlier examples is more resources or extending the schedule,
commonly called path float. Another type will have to be taken to minimize the ad-
of float that is particularly useful in resource verse impact on the program.
allocation is free float. Free float is the slack
that a single activity can experience without 6.5 SUMMARY
affecting any other activity.1 The free float of
a given activity is defined as the difference Network scheduling techniques (PERT,
between earliest start of the succeeding ac- CPM, and PDM) are much alike in provid-
ing such things as interdependencies, depth
tivity and earliest finish of the given activity.
In our example, the free float for Activity D of detail, a critical path, and slack. The
is FF(D)=ES(J)-EF(D)10-5=5. choice among these three techniques de-
In this example, the approach is to find pends primarily on the type of program and
activities having the most free float and try managerial objectives. The PERT method is
to delay them as long as possible without particularly useful if there is considerable
delaying the entire program. By delaying uncertainty in program activity times and if
the start of Activity C for 2 weeks (to the control of the program schedule outweighs
beginning of week 3), Activities A and B can other factors. On the other hand, CPM is
begin simultaneously without exceeding the more appropriate when activity times can
limit of nine workers. Similarly, Activities be adjusted readily and when it is important
D, H, and I can be delayed, resulting in the to plan an appropriate tradeoff between pro-
revised personnel loading chart shown in gram time and cost. The PDM technique is
Figure 6-13. best suited for complex projects with differ-
ent types of relationships/constraints be-
Figure 6-14 shows the revised schedule us- tween activities. In reality, the proliferation
ing lag times to reflect the delays. Note that of scheduling software has blurred many of
Activity A has a start-start relationship with the differences among network scheduling
Activity B. The “Lag 0” constraint indicates techniques as well as Gantt and milestone
that A should start when B starts. Any delay techniques.
in starting Activity A will result in a person-

People Required

8 A A G H H I I
7 C D
3 B B B E E F F F F J J
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11
Time (Weeks)

Figure 6-13. Revised Personnel Loading Chart

1 3
3 5 6
8 10 Lag+1
Lag 0
9 10
4 6 6 10 10 12

2 4 2
1 4 6 5
3 4
4 6 6 10
B 10 12
4 5 6 8
1 2
1 4
3 4
6 7 8 10
8 10
3 4
8 10
9 10

6-14. Revised Network Schedule with Constrained Resources


Fleming, Bonn, and Humphreys, Project and Production Scheduling, Probus Publishing Co.,
Chicago, IL, 1987, Chapter 8.


7.1 DESCRIPTION Production planning and scheduling

should be very detailed. A top-level project
The scheduling techniques discussed in schedule should serve as the production
the previous chapters are best suited for baseline. It should reflect the integration of
one-time development projects. Produc- activities that different organizations in-
tion scheduling, as its name implies, fo- volved in the production process conduct—
cuses on the planning, execution, and con- tooling, material procurement, etc. Lower
trol of repetitive activities, such as those tier schedules should be developed for
involved in the manufacture of several iden- each of the manufacturing activities, with
tical items using the same processes. The special attention to those having potential
objective of production scheduling is to impact on the delivery schedule, e.g., ma-
balance the materials required to produce terial procurement; tool design, fabrica-
the items with the production process and tion, and prove-out; test equipment prove-
the delivery schedule. Such scheduling is out; and capital equipment procurement.
essential to the efficient use of all resources Thorough planning and integration of all
and facilities involved in the manufactur- production process activities are essential
ing process. to manage risk in the manufacturing ap-
proach. This also provides assurance that
While the principles of planning and sched- necessary resources will be available when
uling are essentially the same for both situa- needed, that no resources will be over-
tions, there are differences that should be loaded or completely expended during
considered. For example, in the develop- execution of any manufacturing task, and
ment phase, planning and scheduling that product delivery dates are achievable.
should reflect the uncertainty inherent in
development of the product and processes An understanding of the production pro-
used. Consequently, planning and sched- cesses, to include such things as the se-
uling should permit sufficient flexibility to quence of operations, make or buy deci-
allow for redesign and retest when inevi- sions, inspection methods, tooling, etc., is
table problems arise. In production, there critical to effective production planning
is less uncertainty; the design is relatively and scheduling. The planning and sched-
stable and the processes to be used are uling of all activities must be fully inte-
fairly well-defined. In general, more de- grated and reflect a synchronized flow of
finitive constraints exist in production events that result in product or process
scheduling, such as quantities to be pro- completion when required. The produc-
duced, required delivery dates, and ca- tion schedule describing and integrating
pabilities and availability of production such things as the acquisition of required
assets. materials, fabrication flow, process times,

plant facilities to be used, and personnel 7.1.1 Objective Chart
skills required should be developed as
early as possible in the development pro- An Objective Chart (Figure 7-1A) is a dis-
cess and included in the manufacturing play of the cumulative contract delivery
plan. schedule over time. It shows cumulative
units on the vertical scale and dates of
Once the planning and scheduling are com- delivery along the horizontal scale. It also
plete and production begins, managers shows actual cumulative deliveries to date.
need the means to monitor progress and to
identify problem areas in the process that 7.1.2 Production Plan Chart
could adversely affect the delivery sched-
ule. A technique that is commonly used for This chart (Figure 7-1B) shows the major
this purpose is the Line of Balance (LOB) production process activities and events
technique. It graphically portrays the key (control points) that are to be monitored
activities of the production plan relative to using this technique. It also shows the lead-
a required delivery schedule and provides time associated with each of the control
a view of the progress being made in each points.
activity. This enables managers to focus
their attention on specific problem areas in The more steps that are monitored, the more
the process. sensitive and more complicated the chart
becomes. Generally, control points on a
Government PMs, except those associated single chart should be limited to 50. If there
with an activity that builds or re-builds are more than 50, subsidiary production
equipment, will never be responsible for plans can be used to feed the top plan. Thus,
developing a production schedule. How- each chart can be kept simple and easy to
ever, they should understand the process understand. The shipping date of subsid-
of creating one because the success of a iary charts is the point at which a subpro-
program is very dependent upon the pro- gram must be ready to join the overall
ducer to plan, schedule, and implement a schedule.
production plan.
On the production plan chart, each moni-
The ensuing discussion provides a basis tored step is numbered, left to right. Step 1
for understanding the fundamentals of has the longest lead time; the shipping date
production planning and monitoring. Most is the highest-numbered step. When two
companies have tailored planning software steps are done at the same time, they are
programs to fit their needs, however the numbered from top to bottom, such as steps
principles are the same as those used in the 8, 9, and 10. These control points can also be
LOB approach. For that reason, LOB is the given symbols that show whether they in-
subject of discussion. volve purchased items, subcontracted parts,
or parts and assemblies produced in-house.
The LOB technique consists of four ele- Assemblies break down into subassemblies,
ments as described below and shown in which break down into parts or operations.
Figure 7-1. The application and use of this Thus, one can develop a production plan
technique is demonstrated in a later sec- for any part or level of assembly.
tion of this chapter.

Figure 7-1. Line of Balance Technique

The production plan chart shows the 7.1.4 Line of Balance
interrelationships and the sequence of
major steps, as well as lead times required The LOB represents the number of units that
for each step. An understanding of the should have passed through each control
manufacturing processes involved and point (cumulatively) to satisfy the contract
sound judgment are required to know delivery schedule. Managers use it to ana-
which step and how many steps must be lyze how the status of each control point on a
monitored. Slack or float times for activi- given date will affect future schedules. This
ties are not considered when plotting the LOB is drawn on the Program Status Chart
production/lead-time chart; only the esti- (Figure 7-1C) using the following procedures:
mated time (and latest finish point) for
each activity is used. (1) Select a control point; for example, 7.

The 12 control points in the production (2) From the production plan/lead-time
plan chart shown in Figure 7-1B represent chart (Figure 7-1B), determine the lead time—
key tasks in manufacturing one lot of mis- the time from control point 7 to the shipment
siles. The plan indicates that control point point, Government Acceptance (12
(1), fabricate ballistics shell, must begin 24 workdays).
workdays before 1 January to meet the first
scheduled delivery of five units by the end (3) Using this number, determine the date
of December (see the objective chart). The that the unit now at control point 7 should be
lead time for other control points can be completed. (May 1 + 12 workdays = just over
related to the scheduled delivery in a simi- halfway through a 22-workday month.)
lar manner. Time for in-house transfer and
storage must be allowed in addition to the (4) Find the point corresponding to this
processing time. date, approximately May 17, on the contract
schedule line and determine how many units
7.1.3 Program Status Chart scheduled for completion this represents by
moving horizontally from the objective chart
This chart (Figure 7-1C) shows the cumula- to the program status chart (they share the
tive inventory status at each control point in same vertical scale).
the process at a given time (in this case, 1
May). Looking at control point 12, we see (5) Draw a line on the program status
that the government has accepted 14 units of chart (Figure 7-1C) at the level (43 units) over
the product. The bar for control point 9 shows control point 7.
that 40 units of the guidance section have
been assembled, and the bar for control point (6) Repeat the above for each control
4 shows that in-house fabrication has begun point and connect the horizontal lines over
on 60 fins. the control points. The resulting line is the
LOB, indicating the quantities of (1) units
The cumulative numbers of units through that should have passed through each con-
every control point can and should be meas- trol point on the date of the study or inven-
ured monthly. Final deliveries (government tory (1 May) if the contract delivery schedule
acceptances) are shown month-by-month on were being met.
the objective chart as actual deliveries.
The difference between the LOB and the 7.2.2 Analysis
top of the bar for each control point is the
number of units behind or ahead of sched- Using the LOB charts in Figure 7-1, man-
ule as of 1 May. Thus, control point 12 is 16 agement can tell at a glance how actual
units behind schedule, control point 9 is 5 progress compares with planned progress.
units ahead of schedule, and control point Analysis of the charts can pinpoint prob-
7 is 21 units behind schedule. The main lem areas. Delays at control point 7 in the
impact of control point 7 being behind example may have been causing final de-
schedule will be felt in 12 workdays, which livery problems throughout the contract.
is the lead time for control point 7. As of 1 However, the purpose of LOB analysis is
April, an insufficient number of air vehicle not to show what caused the slippage in
components (shell, fins, engine) had passed the shipping date, but to detect potential
into the assembly (air vehicle body) phase. future problems.
This will adversely affect final deliveries
12 workdays hence. All other control points In the example, the Government accep-
can be analyzed in the same way. tance point is control point 12. The bar
doesn’t reach the LOB; therefore, deliver-
7.2 WHEN AND HOW TO USE THE ies are behind schedule. Control points 10
LINE OF BALANCE TECHNIQUES and 11 are short. However, point 9 is on
schedule. Since point 10 depends on points
7.2.1 General 8 and 9, we know control point 8 is the
offender. Both points 7 and 8 are short, but
The LOB technique should be considered there are more than enough purchased
for use in any project requiring the manu- items (engines) at control point 6.
facture of a specific quantity of a product
using repetitive processes. It is an effective What’s the problem with control point 8?
technique for identifying those activities Trace it back to control point 7, which is
that require attention and possibly correc- seriously short. It is obvious that not hav-
tive action and can also be used for report- ing enough completed fins is holding up
ing the status of the manufacturing process the whole process. Control points 2, 3 and
and delivery schedule to higher manage- 5 are short, but are not directly responsible
ment. The LOB charts should be updated for the failure to meet the delivery sched-
on a periodic basis (weekly or monthly, ule since 9 is ahead of schedule. Neverthe-
depending on such factors as the size of the less shortages at 2, 3, and 5 could soon
production run, the number of activities/ cause problems at 9. The problem with the
control points, and the level of automated fins 7 should be addressed before manage-
data management). ment attention is devoted to other short
operations. The overages at control points
Government managers will probably not 1 and 6 may be examined from the point of
be involved with the LOB technique in the view of inventory control. Updating the
day-to-day management of their programs. charts requires a good status-reporting sys-
However, they should have a basic under- tem, which can be mechanized if the pro-
standing of the technique, the type of infor- gram is large and complex.
mation it can convey, and its applicability.

7.3 LINE OF BALANCE ADVANTAGES Think of the production process as a natu-
AND DISADVANTAGES ral gas pipeline. If a bubble of air gets
into the pipeline, it will eventually be
7.3.1 Advantages carried to the gas users, and the users
will find their burners extinguished as
(1) Points out problems before their the nonflammable air reaches them. The
impact on finished product deliveries show manager of the pipeline company or the
up, thereby allowing managers to correct natural gas utility doesn’t want clients to
problems earlier. suffer blowouts from air bubbles in their
lines. The same holds true for the manag-
(2) Allows managers to see, in the ers of a continuous production process.
middle of a contract, whether they can meet
Waiting for problems to show up at the
the contract schedule if they continue work-
end of the line is a mistake. Problems
ing as they have been.
need to be detected when they begin so
corrections are faster, before too much
(3) Focuses attention on those pro-
damage (to cost, performance, or sched-
duction control points where there are prob-
ule) is done, and production schedules
lems; this allows a senior manager to pin-
point responsibility for slippages. fall too far off contract.

7.3.2 Disadvantages To do LOB, the following is needed: (1) a

contract schedule, or objective chart; (2) a
(1) People working on a project may production plan or lead-time chart for
not grasp what the LOB is measuring. the production process itself; (3) control
points cumulative inventories; and (4) a
(2) Limited to production and/or program status chart on which to plot
assembly-type processes. LOB and the cumulative quantities of
units that have passed through the con-
(3) Shows only where the problem is, trol points of the assembly/production
not what it is. process. If the objective and program
status charts are given the same vertical
(4) A monitoring device; not as easy scale, the LOB can be plotted graphically
to use as a planning device. from the former to the latter.

7.4 SUMMARY Remember that the shape of the LOB will

change over time, especially if the
The LOB is a monitoring technique that production process has a beginning and
gives prior warning of problems within a an end. Remember, too, that LOB charts
continuous production process. The key is show where a problem is, but not neces-
to catch problems in a production process sarily why the problem exists or what the
early; otherwise, the schedule is lost. The solution is.
LOB technique provides that warning.


In most programs, especially in DoD and (1) Most PMs establish a time reserve of
defense-related industries, time is a re- about 10 percent. On a 40-month program,
source that must be carefully managed. If for example, a 4-month time reserve would
it is not, it can become a serious constraint be established.
that can threaten the success of the pro-
gram. This chapter addresses time man- (2) The time reserve must be held closely
agement from two perspectives: first, as it by the PM. Otherwise, every manager on
relates to a program, and second, as it his/her program may think “I know there’s
relates to the PMs use of time. a time reserve; therefore, I don’t really have
to meet my schedule.” The PM may place
8.1 TIME MANAGEMENT AND this reserve under “additional system tests”
THE PROGRAM or another downstream activity. The point
is, it shouldn’t be visible. (A built-in safety
This section concerns three aspects of time factor between the manufacturing sched-
management related to programs: ule and the delivery schedule is often used.)

(1) Time reserve (3) A tough and disciplined approach to

meeting the published schedule is required
(2) “Now” schedule from the start of a program in order to
maintain the reserve and, consequently, to
(3) Value of time. meet the program schedule in spite of slip-
pages caused by the unknown unknowns
8.1.1 Time Reserve (unk-unks) that inevitably arise.

In contractor performance measurement, 8.1.2 “Now” Schedule

much emphasis is placed on “management
reserve,” the reserve budget controlled by There is a direct relationship between time
the industry PM. What isn’t always recog- and cost for any activity. This relationship
nized is that a time reserve is also needed in takes into account the people, resources,
order to accommodate unknowns in the pro- and method used. It also considers the
gram. However, use of a time reserve should efficiency achieved. Generally, the least
be approached with caution, because mem- costly schedule is the current one. Speed-
bers of a program office team may be tempted ing up the schedule costs more; stretching
to fall back on it prematurely. out the schedule also costs more.

Literature describing time reserve is scarce. The sum of the direct and indirect costs
However, there are some aspects of a time gives a U-shaped total program cost curve.
reserve that are clear.
The optimum schedule for implementing Often, the organization causing a slip in
the program is the schedule correspond- schedule becomes a repeat offender. The
ing to the minimum point on this curve. principal value of retaining a former sched-
The relationship among direct, indirect, ule lies in being able to hold the offender’s
and total program cost is shown graphi- feet to the fire, thus making schedule
cally in Figure 8-1. slips less palatable.

Because schedule stability affects program The significance of maintaining a stable

costs, which may, in turn, affect technical schedule is becoming more widely recog-
performance, it is clear that schedule sta- nized. Appendix A describes the develop-
bility has a great deal to do with whether ment of a master schedule and the impor-
the program meets its cost and technical tance of maintaining schedule discipline.
objectives. Unfortunately, budget con-
straints and other factors, like changes in 8.1.3 Value of Time
quantities (items over which the PM has no
control), have often been imposed on a According to the late John H. Richardson,
program with the comment, “Do the best president of Hughes Aircraft Company,
you can.” “A basic reason for adopting project (or
program) management, when tackling the
When a schedule must be revised, the difficult and unique tasks associated with
superseded schedule is often discarded. If developing and producing a system, is to
the new schedule is superseded, the pro- eliminate unnecessary delays in accom-
cess is repeated. However, there is some plishing the job at hand. Time is a resource
value in retaining an obsolete schedule. in systems management, to be treated with

Total Program

Indirect Cost
Program Cost

Direct Cost


Figure 8-1. Total Cost Analysis for Selecting

“Optimum” Program Duration

indifference or used well like any other forgotten is the fact that a month’s delay in the
resource. For projects not yet in full swing, early stages of development is exactly as
it is important to recognize that time has long as a month’s delay in the later stages.
economic value, and that we may be taking While it may seem innocuous to put off a
time too much for granted.”1 decision for a month or two in the early years
of a project (or program) with an uncertain
(1) Funding could create a problem. In future, that delay may turn out to be just as
hungry years, the schedule is often costly as is procrastination when the final
stretched because of reduced funding. decisions are made. In short, a sense of ur-
gency is essential to decision making in all
(2) A better product could be developed stages of a new venture, not just the later
if it were more thoroughly debugged and stages.”3
tested. However, a system does not really
get wrung-out until it is in the user’s hands, The useful life of a defense system must be
regardless of advance debugging. taken into consideration. Concentration on
the system or product often overlooks a key
(3) Cost of concurrency (overlap of devel- point: whether the buyer obtains value upon
opment and production) might lead to a delivery. The most costly product is one that
decision not to overlap program phases. appears when it no longer fulfills a useful
Such a decision might be popular in many purpose, even though it has been produced
cases, but it could never be tolerated when at minimum cost. Each month added to the
the pendulum swings toward the impor- development and production of a new high-
tance of time; that is, when top manage- technology system or product tends to re-
ment says, “Get the system out the door, duce by 1 month the operational life of the
never mind what it costs.”2 system or product.

Stretched-out schedules incur cost penal- In spite of the 10-20 percent cost premium
ties because of inflation, additional engi- that may be paid for tight scheduling (as
neering changes, and changes in key pro- compared to orderly but stretched-out sched-
gram management office positions. An- uling), the resulting longer operational life
other near-term cost is due to the increased may provide greater economic value. This is
chance that a program will be canceled looking at time only from the viewpoint of
because of obsolescence or competing tech- economics, i.e., acquisition cost per year of
nology. Stretch-outs invite cancellation. operational availabil survival insurance.
Also, long schedules with no opportuni-
ties for incorporation of improvements are Consideration of alternative plans and sched-
a negative factor when considering a new ules will also help; e.g., if event so-and-so
start. occurs, proceed with plan A; if event such-
and-such occurs, proceed with plan B and so
Delayed decisions increase costs. Accord- on. Anticipation and preparation for most-
ing to R. W. Peterson, former DuPont execu- likely events, along with the tools described,
tive, “All businessmen are concerned, and and coupled with effective communication
properly so, about the long time it takes to of the plans, can change the management
move a new development from its incep- style from crisis management to skillful
tion to a profit status. But frequently management.
8.2 TIME MANAGEMENT AND THE inability or reluctance to say no. If a subor-
PROGRAM MANAGER4 dinate brings a problem to the PM, the
Manager must be alert to make sure not to
PMs are busy people. They have the re- assume responsibility for the problem,
sponsibility for the management of a unless, of course, the situation warrants
myriad of activities and the resources that such action. If subordinates believe that
make up the program. In addition, they are PMs will assume responsibility for their
often required to perform specific program problems, needless demands on the PM’s
activities, especially in smaller programs. time will increase.
Thus, it is important that they manage their
time well. Some managers could be more Meetings are a fact of life in program man-
productive, perhaps as much as 20-40 per- agement. However, unless they are effec-
cent, by better managing their time. A ma- tively planned and conducted, they can be
jor difficulty in accomplishing this is the a severe drain on time and resources. A
failure to realize that there is a time man- number of common pitfalls, if not avoided,
agement problem and that solutions are can turn meetings into a complete waste of
possible. This section discusses various time. Among them are: not having a clear
aspects of time management and identifies and focused agenda; spending too much
ways to better accomplish it. time on trivial matters; having too many or
too few meetings; not having the right
In the early 1980s, a time management sur- people at the meetings; and not keeping an
vey was conducted to identify the prob- accurate record of decisions and actions
lems in achieving effective time manage- assigned.
ment. More than 300 project managers in 24
industries, including the government, par- To get the most value out of meetings, the
ticipated in the survey, which investigated following actions should be considered:
15 different areas. The survey identified
several time management problem areas. (1) Understand the purpose of the meeting
Among the most common were time rob- and what results are expected
bers and meetings.
(2) Minimize the number of people attend-
Time robbers are simply those things that ing the meeting
can occur on a day-to-day basis that can
take away from the PMs ability and time to (3) Hold the meeting in a setting appro-
accomplish his/her work. There are liter- priate for the meeting objectives
ally dozens, if not hundreds, of such things,
such as incomplete work, delayed deci- (4) Develop and distribute the agenda
sions, poor communications channels, ca-
sual visitors, lack of effective program (5) Start and finish on time
management tools, etc. Appendix B con-
tains a list of common time robbers. The (6) Summarize meeting results and pre-
survey found that delayed decisions and pare and distribute minutes.
poor communications were the most com-
monly cited time robbers. Another com- In addition to focusing on time robbers
mon problem that affects a PMs time is the and the conduct of meetings, PMs should

also concentrate on other effective time make the least desirable decision because
management techniques, such as: of lack of time. Establishing a time reserve
and a “now” schedule, and recognizing the
(7) Prioritize activities value of time in decision making all con-
tribute to the PMs repertoire of good tools.
(8) Devote solid time blocks for important
activities Sir Jeffrey Quill, manager of the British
Spitfire Development Program, com-
(9) Maintain “to do” lists and time logs mented during a visit to DSMC that; “After
1935, costs weren’t particularly important.
(10) Delegate What mattered was time. We worked three
shifts a day. Everything was time. Quan-
(11) Manage by exception tity and time. It turned out that we prob-
ably produced at the lowest cost, too; but
(12) Practice calculated neglect the emphasis was on time.”

(13) Control access—limit casual visits PMs must manage their time effectively if
and telephone calls. they are to be successful. They must be
alert to those time robbers that affect their
8.3 SUMMARY ability to accomplish their work and un-
derstand the value of proven time manage-
Planning and scheduling can do much to ment techniques.
prevent running out of time and having to

John H. Richardson, Time Defeats Technology, Hughes Aircraft Company, Culver City, Calif., date unknown.
Russell W. Peterson, former DuPont executive, Governor of Delaware and White House advisor, “New
Venture Management in a Large Company,” Harvard Business Review, May-June 1967, p. 72.
Harold Kerzner, Project Management, Van Nostrand Reinhold, New York, 1998, Chapter 6.


Previous chapters have shown that manag- 9.1 AUTOMATED PLANNING AIDS
ers use schedules in a variety of ways for a
wide range of purposes. Schedules are an The idea to use the power of the computer
integral part of the program planning and to assist in the planning and tracking pro-
decision processes. Managers use them to cess is not new. Industry has used auto-
track progress, predict future work, man- mated scheduling software for at least the
age resources, analyze alternatives, iden- past 30 years. Early versions of these tools,
tify risk, and report program status. In however, usually employed a mainframe
most cases, it is the PMs responsibility to computer that batch processed data off-
construct, revise, maintain, and report line and spewed reams of information for
schedule information. managers to analyze when they arrived at
work on a Monday morning. Despite the
The PM must do these things in a complex automated tools, the process of creating,
environment that cuts across contractor and maintaining, and reporting schedule infor-
government boundaries and includes a mation was a daunting task.
wide geographical area. The challenge is
complicated even further by the need for The advent of PCs/workstations and net-
instant information that must be available work technologies has made life easier for
to a wide audience that usually requires managers. The market encourages soft-
the information in a specific format to suit ware vendors to develop a wide range of
unique needs. programs readily available to P Ms to aid
them in effectively and efficiently dealing
It would be impossible to meet these chal- with the details involved in creating a pro-
lenges without automated tools.The gram plan, then tracking progress.
remainder of this chapter discusses charac-
teristics and features of some tools avail- The introductory paragraph of this chap-
able on the market today and suggests ter lists many uses of a “schedule.” Soft-
criteria that anyone searching for a tool ware developers have responded to the
should consider. The intent is to provide managers’ needs by creating programs
an overview of the types of products that that build schedules and support pro-
are available and the range of functions gram management functions. Even the
these products support. The level of detail simplest program includes some program
presented is keyed to what would be use- management features. The focus of the
ful to know about the program manage- following discussion, therefore, is on the
ment software tools that would likely be broad category of Program (often called
used in a mid-to-large Program Office. Project) Management Software.

The focus is on providing a brief descrip- (1) System-Level Characteristics
tion of the functionality of these products,
highlighting some of the desirable features (2) Project Management/Scheduling
that are available to support program Characteristics
management, and identifying sources that
may be useful in determining what prod- (3) Ease of Use.
ucts are available and how their features
and performance might be assessed. System-level features have a general
applicability, independent of any of the
9.2 FUNCTIONAL CHARACTERISTICS specific project-management activities sup-
AND FEATURES ported, that add to the overall capability
and desirability of the product. These fea-
Most of the Program Management Soft- tures include, but may not be limited to:
ware that is available today is based on a
relational database design and is therefore • Collaboration/Workgroup—Enables
able to support a broad range of program managers/team members to use a com-
management activities including: mon system of communication and allow
access to common databases for the pur-
(1) Scheduling/Tracking pose of assigning tasks, updating project
data, assigning resources, and reporting
(2) Resource Planning/Management status.

(3) Risk Management • Integral e-mail—Allows exchange of

messages and file attachments to other
(4) Cost/Performance/Analysis project team members from within the
project management application.
(5) Reports and Graphics.
• Multiple Project/Multiple Tasks—Sup-
The extent to which the different programs ports multiple programs and tasks within
support these activities varies from prod- a project.
uct to product. For example, some prod-
ucts provide the capability to create only • Security—Limits access to certain data
Gantt charts whereas others provide the by individual or class of user, as well as
tools to make Gantt and network charts. password protection for the system.

Program features, the way in which activi- • Open Data Base Connectivity
ties are implemented, are an important (ODBC)—Enables users to import data
factor in considering the usefulness of a from other data sources and in various
program. A convenient way to profile the formats into their scheduling applications
functional characteristics and associated (e.g., data from your contractor’s project
features of automated program manage- database). This is a Microsoft-developed
ment tools is to do so from these three standard for exchanging data with a vari-
perspectives: ety of databases.

Most programs include features that focus • Import/Export—Import/Export data
on program management and schedule from/to an external source, such as an-
functions. Some features offered are: other database or spread sheets, facilitates
the ability to create custom reports or con-
• Project Scheduling/Tracking—Data duct analyses.
Entry Templates facilitate the entry of the
initial task, time, and resource data. On- Finally, ease of use or user friendliness, is
Screen Tracking facilitates comparison of the set of qualities that represent the de-
actual performance versus the planned and gree in which people can employ the soft-
allows tracking of progress by cost, time, ware without an inordinate amount of train-
or achievement. ing or regular reference to user’s manuals.
User friendliness is an important consider-
• Resource Planning/Management—Re- ation because program management soft-
source Leveling is a capability that resolves ware products can be complicated. Re-
resource conflicts by delaying tasks and gardless of how powerful a program may
assignments as well as by task splitting, be, if it is difficult to use, managers prob-
which entails dividing tasks into segments ably will not spend the time to learn it.
with time gaps as necessary. Resource Cal- Consequently, PM software is likely to be
endars provide insight into the availability effective and desirable if users can easily
of a particular resource by showing work- learn to use it.
ing and non-working times. Free/Total Slack
Time is a feature that is useful for adjusting The following features typify user-friendly
under-or-over allocated resources. systems:

• Cost/Performance Analysis—Earned • Graphical User Interfaces (GUIs)—

Value Tools are essential for comparing ac- These are the screens in which a user inter-
tual performance with expected perform- acts with the program. The operating envi-
ance. Cost Analysis Tool Kits are tools for ronments in use today have led to the
analyzing data and making forecasts. This development of interface screens that en-
feature may be integral to the product or able the user to interact with the software in
available by virtue of “exporting” data to an intuitive way, using a variety of but-
another application with this capability. tons, menu lists, and wizards.

• Reports and Graphics—Pre-Defined Re- • On-Screen Data Entry—The capability

ports facilitate the presentation of project to create schedule information by using
data. Customization Controls provide users tools to create an on-screen graph. See Fig-
with a convenient way to format reports to ure 9-1 for an example.
their own specifications. Filters enable the
user to screen information, e.g., tasks or • Help Function—On-screen docu-
resources, before capturing a screen-view mentation as well as “context-sensitive”
or preparing a report. Embedded Graphics help in which the software displays the
and Text capability allows a user to import applicable text based on the functions be-
data from other applications for inclusion ing performed. This is a particularly useful
in a project report. feature for someone learning to use it.

Figure 9-1. On -Screen Data Entry Using Gantt Chart Feature
(AEC Software Fast Track Schedule)

• Tutorials—Program instruction on per- 9.3 EVALUATING PROJECT

forming certain functions and guidance MANAGEMENT SOFTWARE
through a “canned” demonstration. PRODUCTS

• Wizards—Templates that guide the Choosing a software program from the

user through various project setup, data wide range of available products can be
entry, and report formatting procedures. complex and time consuming. The selec-
The features discussed above are a sample tion process should begin with an analysis
of the characteristics of various program of what managers want to do with the
management products. Moreover, there is software to identify the functions that are
no common “feature list” or set of defini- needed. Other factors that should be part
tions that defines the various characteris- of the assessment process are consider-
tics. Nonetheless, the summary should give ation of personnel skill levels/training re-
a sense of what is available and provide the quirements, integration with enterprise
basis for a more exhaustive review as (organizational) systems, hardware/sys-
needed. tem requirements, and cost.
Table 9-1. Project Management Software Functions and Criteria

Feature Consideration
Graphical User Interfaces (GUIs) Logical, intuitive, all inclusive, windows compliant
Robust Help Function Complete, easy to access, context based, examples
Wizards Exist for major functional areas, intuitive, tailorable results
Tools Exist for major functional areas, intuitive
Tutorials Complete and examples
On-Screen Data Entry Simple, logical, complete, intuitive
Collaboration/Workgroup Support Desired capabilities available, non-proprietary
Integral e-mail Exists, simple, compatibility with existing e-mail
Multi-Project & Task Support Roll-up to higher levels, supported by reporting features
Security Meets specific security needs, compatible w/ existing system
Open Data Base Connectivity Data transfer with other program management S/W
Project Scheduling/Tracking
Multiple Schedule Methods Create Gantt, network charts, and go from one to the other
Roll-Up Display and report different levels
Ability to Tailor to Specific Needs Add/delete/modify activity and event information
Relationships Display and report dependencies among events/activities
Progress Tracking Compare and display plans and actual progress
Critical Path Display Highlight critical path
Interoperability w/ Other Programs Import and export data from other programs
Total Free/Slack Time Compute and display free and slack time
Time Estimates Use probability distributions to compute time to complete
Time Roll-Up Use statistical methods to compute roll-up times
Resource Planning/Management
Resource Determination Assist in determining resources needed
Resource Assignment Allow assignment and notification of assignment to activities
Interoperability w/ Other Programs Import and export resource data
Resource Leveling Easy to access, permits “what if” excursions
Resource Calendars Display resources over time
Task Assignment Filter and display assignment of responsibility
Schedule Analysis Allow analysis and comparison of alternative schedules
Earned Value Analysis Assist in complete and accurate EV analysis
Cost Analysis Includes tool kits for analysis of program cost
Resource Analysis Compute resource utilization, identify conflicts
Pre-Defined Report Formats Automatically create reports based on program data
Customization Controls Allow reports to be tailored for specific purposes
Embedded Graphics and Text Add text and graphics to reports

Analyses of requirements and software offices are going to share information, it is
evaluation are beyond the scope of this prudent to use the same software, if pos-
discussion. However, Table 9-1 shows sible. At the very least, compatibility and
some of the functions that are available in interoperability must be demonstrated be-
available program management software fore making a decision to buy a particular
and lists some ideas for consideration when product.
searching for the right software.
There is a considerable information on
9.4 FINDING OUT MORE project management and scheduling soft-
ware from a variety of sources. The Defense
The best method of gaining information Acquisition Deskbook (DAD) has a list of tools
about a potential project management tool that are being used by program offices.
is to talk to someone who is using the From a commercial aspect, specific prod-
product. A PM in the next office may have uct information is available on most com-
a perfectly acceptable and proven product panies’ World Wide Web home pages.
that he/she is using. The company under Virtually all developers provide informa-
contract may have a product that it uses. If tion about their products on a web site and
the government and contractor program show links/contact to additional sources.



The Integrated Master Schedule (IMS) for a format that greatly facilitates the tracking
program should be a time reference and execution of the program.
baseline for the activities and events that
make up the program. It should be incor- In some cases, a preliminary IMP and its
porated into the program plan and linked corresponding IMS may be developed by
to approved performance and cost objec- the government but include industry in-
tives. The IMS is developed by the contrac- puts obtained through open communica-
tor from the Integrated Master Plan (IMP), tions with potential sources during the
which documents all the tasks required to pre-solicitation phase of the acquisition.
deliver a high quality product and to facili- Contractors are normally required to sub-
tate success throughout the product’s life mit formal IMP and IMS with their propos-
cycle. In an Integrated Product and Process als and to develop more detailed IMP/
Development (IPPD) environment, which IMS versions after the contract is awarded.
is the standard approach for all DoD pro-
grams, the IMP and IMS provide an The IMS is event driven and is developed
overarching framework against which the with participation of all program stake-
Integrated Product Teams (IPTs) can func- holders. It should identify all tasks that
tion, helping them understand their work need to be accomplished, their logical or-
within the context of the total program. der, and the input conditions necessary to
complete each task. When documented in
The IMP and IMS evolve as the program a formal plan and schedule, this event-
matures. During the initial stages of Con- driven approach can help ensure that all
cept Exploration, the integrated plan is tasks are integrated properly and that the
preliminary and its purpose is to provide management process is based on signifi-
an understanding of the scope of work cant events in the acquisition life cycle and
required and the likely structure of the not on arbitrary calendar events. Develop-
program. It is constructed to depict a likely ing the program schedule presents an op-
progression of work through the remain- portunity to identify critical risk areas. As
ing phases, with the most emphasis on the IPT members estimate the times to com-
current and/or upcoming phase (especially plete specific tasks, events that may cause
the period to be contracted for next). As the delays will become apparent. These events
program is defined, the IMP is iterated are potential areas of risk that the IPT
several times, each time increasing the level should consider for further analysis.
of detail and confidence at which all essen-
tial work has been identified. The specific The IMS begins as an IMP with dates—the
format for this plan is not critical; however, starting points are the events, accomplish-
it usually reflects an Event/Accomplish- ments, and criteria that make up the plan.
ment/Criteria hierarchical structure—a At a minimum, an IMS shows the expected
start and stop dates for each activity in the they were obtained at the right time. In
plan, but each activity may be broken down addition, the IMS can be useful for the
into lower-level tasks that will be used to following events/activities that are com-
manage the program on a day-to-day ba- mon to all programs.
sis. The schedule can be expanded down-
ward to the level of detail appropriate for PROGRAM REVIEWS
the scope and risk of the program. Pro-
grams with high risk show much lower The IMS can be a framework for periodic
levels of detail in the integrated master program reviews within the program man-
schedule in order to give the visibility agement office (PMO). If constructed prop-
necessary to manage risk. The more de- erly, the schedule will illustrate the vari-
tailed the IMS, however, the greater the ous levels of the program and will be com-
cost to track and update the schedule. patible with the program cost/schedule
Under acquisition reform initiatives, the control system reports.
dates in the IMS usually are not made
contractually binding so as to allow the Program reviews can be an excellent forum
flexibility to take full advantage of event- for resolution of schedule conflicts and the
driven scheduling. genesis for controlled changes to the sched-
ule from within the PMO. Most key mem-
Additional information on the development bers of the PMO team are present at these
of IMSs can be found in various sections of reviews; therefore, proposed schedule
the Defense Acquisition Deskbook and in the changes or slips can receive wide dissemi-
DoD Integrated Product and Process Develop- nation within the organization.
ment Handbook dated August 1998. Com-
mercial standards EIA 632 and IEEE 1220- WHAT IF” EXERCISES
1994 can also be consulted for more infor-
mation on developing master plans and The IMS can serve as the framework for
schedules. See http://www.eia.org/eng/ “what if” exercises imposed on programs
published.htmandhttp:// from outside the PMO. Schedule changes
standards.ieee.org for information on can be plotted manually by using over-
how to obtain these standards. A DoD lays. Using the same grid coordinates on
Data Item Descriptor (DI-MISC-81183A) an overlay allows the PMO team to see,
has been developed for IMS guidance; clearly and graphically, the effect of the
it is attached to this Appendix as Tab 1. compressions or extensions of sub-mile-
stones on the program. It may be even
USE OF INTEGRATED MASTER easier (and more productive) for the PMO
SCHEDULES team to run “what if” exercises on a com-
puterized schedule. Without a master
The primary purpose of the IMS is to track schedule as a baseline, these exercises can
schedule variations. By linking the IMS to take longer to accomplish and they may
the IMP, it can also be used to track the overlook important variances from the
activities that provide functional and life- program’s established baseline schedule
cycle inputs to product development. In or plan.
this role it provides a crosscheck not only
that the inputs were obtained, but also that
PROGRAM BRIEFINGS justification and an understanding of the
impact of the changes on the overall pro-
The IMS can serve as a baseline for pro- gram. Following are examples of some
gram reviews at higher headquarters and simple procedures that, if practiced, will
other reviews or briefings outside the PMO. instill discipline and prevent the unautho-
Most programs have key milestones taken rized release of schedule information that
from the master schedule and presented in has not been approved for inclusion in the
summary form on viewgraphs or slides. If IMS.
these do not show the detail required to
make a point, the time span shown can be • Program changes, whatever the source,
reduced to the point where the details should start as proposals and, if approved,
become visible. grow into a firm plan. Eventually, they are
incorporated into the IMS as changes. The
SCHEDULE DISCIPLINE question of when to plot these changes is a
matter of judgment and should reflect the
To be effective, an IMS must be kept up- PM's policy. Each change should be plot-
to-date and accurate. Maintenance of the ted as a proposed or tentative change until
IMS requires a process similar to that approved.
inherent in configuration control—one
that establishes discipline through a set of • A permanent record of each change
rigorous procedures for managing sched- should be maintained. If the program
ule change. The degree of schedule disci- schedule slips, it should be documented
pline imposed within the PMO can be a until documentation no longer serves a
major factor in the success of a program. useful purpose.
The underlying philosophy of the sched-
ule control process should reflect central- • Whenever copies of the IMS are made,
ized control of the IMS. That is, changes to they should be dated and authenticated by
the IMS baseline should be made only the signature of the PM or the appointed
with the approval of the P2M or his/her schedule manager. Undated and unauthen-
designated representative and with full ticated schedules should not be released
outside the PMO.

Form Approved
Publi c repor ting bur den for this coll ection of infor mation is estimated to average 110 hour s per response, including the time for reviewing instr uctions, searching existing data sources, gathering and maintaining the
data needed, and completing and reviewing the coll ection of infor mation. Send comments regar ding this bur den estimate or any other aspect of this coll ection of infor mation, including suggestions for reducing this
bur den, to Depar tment of Defense, Washington Headquar ters Services, Director ate for I nfor mation Operations and Repor ts, 1215 Jefferson Davis Highway, Suite 1204, Ar li ngton, VA 22202-4302, and to the Office of
M anagement and Budget, Paperwor k Reduction Pr oject (0704-0188), Washington, DC 20503.
Integrated Master Schedule (IMS) DI-MISC-81183A
The IMS is an integrated schedule developed by logically networking detailed program
activities. The contract Integrated Master Plan (IMP)is the foundation of the program
schedule and provides a hierarchy for schedule traceability and summarization. IMP events,
accomplishments, and criteria are included in the schedule to monitor progress. This
information will be used to verify attainability of program objectives, evaluate the progress
of the government and contractor team toward meeting the program objectives, and to integrate
program schedule among all related components.
960209 F/ASC/FMCS
7.1 This Data Item Description (DID) contains the format and content preparation
instructions for the data product generated by the specific and discrete task requirement as
delineated in the contract.
7.2 This DID may be applied to programs which utilize the Work Breakdown Structure (WBS)
during the concept exploration, demonstration and validation, engineering and manufacturing
and development, and production phases.
7.3 This DID supersedes DI-MISC-81183.
10.1 Format . This precedence logic diagram shall be in the contractor’s format in the form
of a network, milestone, and Gantt chart. This diagram shall be provided in digital format.
10.2 Content . The schedule shall contain all of the contract IMP events and milestones,
accomplishments, criteria, and activities from contract award to the completion of the
contract. The schedule shall be an integrated, logical network-based schedule that
correlates to the program WBS, and is vertically and horizontally traceable to the
cost/schedule reporting instrument used to address variances (such as Cost Performance Report
(CPR), Cost/Schedule Status Report (C/SSR), etc.) It shall have a numbering system that
provides traceability through the IMP and Statement of Work (SOW). It shall contain program
events and milestones and definitions, summary, intermediate and detailed schedules, and
periodic analysis of progress to date. It shall be possible to access the information by
product, process, or organizational lines. Descriptions of the key elements are as follows:
10.2.1 Program milestones and definitions. Key programmatic events defined by IMP, the
contracting agency or weapon system contractor which define progress and completion in each
WBS element along with the definition for successful completion of the milestone.
10.2.2 Summary master schedules. A graphical display of top-level program activities and
key events and milestones of the IMP which depict major work activities in an integrated
fashion at the summary level of the WBS, e.g. level 1-3 of the WBS.
10.2.3 Intermediate schedules. A graphical display of top-level program activities and key
milestones which includes all associated accomplishments of the IMP, traceable to the WBS
element as necessary to display the work effort at the intermediate level of summarization,
e.g. level 3-5 of the WBS as appropriately tailored.
10.2.4 Detailed schedules. A graphical display of detailed activities and milestones which
depict work activities in a particular work breakdown structure element, to include the
criteria associated with each accomplishment of the WBS element as well as any additional
activities necessary to display the work effort to detailed WBS levels, e.g. level 4-8 of the
WBS as appropriately tailored.


Distribution Statement A: Approved for public release; distribution is unlimited.

DD Form 1664, APR 89 Previous editi ons are obsolete Page 1 of 3

04/15/91 DI-MISC-81183

Block 10, Preparation Instructions (Continued)

10.2.5 Periodic analysis. A brief summary which identifies progress to date, variances to the planned
schedule, causes for the variance, potential impacts and recommended corrective action to avoid
schedule delays. For each program milestone planned, forecasted and actual completion dates shall be
reported. The analysis shall also identify potential problems and a continuing assessment of the network
critical path. Thresholds for impact reporting shall be identified on the DD Form 1423, CDRL.
10.2.6 Integrated program network. Logical diagram of all activities in the program. The key elements of
the integrated network to be constructed in the diagram are as follows:

a. Milestone or event - A specific definable accomplishment in the program/project network, recognizable

at a particular point in time. Milestones are numbered and may be contained within an activity box.

b. Activity or task - A time consuming element, e.g. work in progress between interdependent events,
represented by an activity box.

c. Duration - Planned length of time needed to accomplish an event/activity.

d. Relationships - A line that defines how two activities or events are logically linked. It can take up to
four (4) forms:

(1) FS (finish to start) - An activity must finish before another can start.

(2) SS (start to start) - An activity depends on the start of another


(3) FF (finish to finish) - One activity cannot finish until another activity
is finished.

(4) SF (start to finish) - An activity cannot finish until another activity


e. Slack or Float - Extra time available on an activity before it will impact an activity on the critical path.

f. Lag - The delay or wait period between two tasks.

g. Critical Path - A sequence of activities in the network that has the longest total duration through the
program or project. Activities along the critical path have zero or negative slack/float. It should be easily
distinguished on the report formats, e.g. a thick line, patterned or in red ink. This should be calculated by
computer-based software.

h. Target Start (TS) - A program defined date of when an activity should start. This is an operator-
defined date rather than a computer-calculated date.

i. Target Complete (TC) - A program defined date of when an activity should finish. This is an operator-
defined date rather than a computer-calculated date.

j. Actual Start (AS) - Actual start date of an activity.

k. Actual Finish (AF) - Actual finish date of an activity.

l. Early Start (ES) - The earliest start date an activity can begin the precedence relationships. Computer-
calculated date.

m. Early Finish (EF) - The earliest finish date an activity can end. Computer-calculated date.

n. Late Start (LS) - The latest start date an activity can start without delaying the program or project
target completion date. Computer-calculated date.

04/15/91 DI-MISC-81183

Block 10, Preparation Instructions (Continued)

o. Late Finish (LF) - The latest finish date an activity can have without affecting the
program or project target completion date. Computer-calculated date.

p. Percent Complete (PC) - Actual progress of an activity from its start to its finish.

10.3 Master Integrated Program Schedule. It shall display all of the proposed
activities, events, and milestones from contract award to the completion of the contract.

10.4 Descriptive titles. Activities, tasks, events, and milestones shall be labeled with
a brief descriptive title, numbered of coded and contain time constraints (e.g. duration,
TS, ES, EF, LS, LF, etc.). Standard abbreviations may be used to conserve space.
Descriptive titles used on activities, events, and milestones shall be identical on all
program schedules. A legend shall be provided to aid in ease of reading the schedules.

10.5 Schedule risk. The schedule shall include a description of the approach that will
be taken to limit the schedule risks identified as a result of the contractor’s risk
assessment. Risk shall be defined considering impact on cost and technical performance
and assessing the probability of schedule change. Additionally, technical performance
measurement tasks and their correlation with contractual cost/schedule elements permit
assessment of the program effort in terms of the schedule as well as cost of work
increments. As technical performance measurement tasks, as well as cost reviews, reveal
potential impacts to the schedule these risks will be identified.

10.5.1 Schedule Risk Assessment (SRA). Optimistic, pessimistic, and most likely
durations for each MIPS activity/task and milestone/event shall be provided as the basis
for determining the probability of meeting schedule dates. The government will assess the
durations and use an appropriate cumulative probability (0-100%) for the chosen milestones
to determine expected completion dates.

3 of 3

Common Time Robbers1

• Incomplete work • Misplaced information

• A job poorly done that must be done • Record keeping

• Shifting priorities
• Poor communications channels
• Indecision or delaying decisions
• Uncontrolled telephone calls
• Procrastination
• Lack of adequate responsibility and
commensurate authority • Setting up appointments
• Poor functional performance and • Too many meetings
status reporting
• Monitoring delegated work
• Changes without direct notification/
explanation • Unclear roles/job descriptions
• Casual visitors and conversations • Unnecessary crisis intervention
• Waiting for people • Need to get involved in details to get
job done
• Failure to delegate, or unwise
delegation • Not enough proven or trustworthy
• Poor retrieval systems
• Vague goals and objectives
• Lack of information in a ready-to-use
format • Too many people involved in minor
decision making
• Day-to-day administration
• Lack of technical knowledge
• Spending more time than anticipated
in answering questions • Lack of authorization to make
judgment decisions
• Late appointments

• Impromptu tasks • Unreasonable time constraints

• Having to explain “thinking” to • Lack of commitment from higher

superiors authorities

• Too many levels of review • Too much travel

• Too many people in a small area • Lack of adequate project management


• Poor functional communications/ writ • Dealing with unreliable subcontractors
ing skills
• Personnel not willing to take risks
• Inability to relate to peers in a personal
way • Demand for short-term results

• Rush into decisions/beat the deadline • Lack of long-range planning

• Lack of reward (“a pat on the back can • Being overdirected

do wonders”)
• Overreacting management
• Expecting too much from one’s staff
and oneself • Poor lead time on projects

• Going from crisis to crisis • Documentation (reports/red tape)

• Conflicting directives • Large number of projects

• Fire drills • Inadequate or inappropriate require

• Lack of privacy
• Desire for perfection
• Lack of challenge in job duties
• Lack of dedication by technical experts
• Bureaucratic roadblocks (“ego”)
• Lack of project organization
• Empire-building line managers
• Constant pressure
• Too much work for one person to handle
effectively • Constant interruptions

• Excessive paperwork • Project budget problems

• Lack of clerical/administrative support • Shifting of functional personnel

• Workload growing faster than capacity • Lack of qualified manpower

Harold Kerzner, Project Management, Van Norstand Reinhold, New York, NY, 1998, Chapter 6.


ACQUISITION STRATEGY — A busi- ages, etc.) scheduled to be accomplished

ness and technical management approach (including in-process work packages), plus
designed to achieve program objectives the amount of level of effort and appor-
within the resource constraints imposed. It tioned effort scheduled to be accomplished
is the framework for planning, directing, within a given time period. (Planned Value)
contracting for, and managing a program.
It provides a master schedule for research, BUDGETED COST OF WORK PER-
development, test, production, fielding, FORMED (BCWP) — A measurement of
modification, postproduction manage- work performed in cost/schedule control
ment, and other activities essential for pro- systems criteria (C/SCSC) terminology.
gram success. Acquisition strategy is the BCWP is a measurement of work per-
basis for formulating functional plans and formed as compared to the original plan.
strategies [e.g., test and evaluation master (Earned Value)
plan (TEMP), acquisition plan (AP), com-
petition, prototyping, etc.]. BUDGETING — The process of translat-
ing resource requirements into a funding
ACTIVITY — A task or measurable profile.
amount of work to complete a job or part of
technique that aids understanding of the
ACTUAL COST OF WORK PER- dependency of events in a project and the
FORMED (ACWP) — The costs actually time required to complete them. Delayed
incurred and recorded in accomplishing activities that have an impact on the total
the work performed within a given time project schedule are critical and said to be
period. on the critical path.


— A type of network diagram that labels TEM (EVMS) — An integrated manage-
the activities on the lines connecting nodes. ment system that coordinates work scope,
schedule, and cost goods and objectively
BAR CHART — The detailed graphical measures progress toward these goals. It
working plan of a part providing sequence is based on an industry-developed set of
and time for the job scheduled ahead and 32 guidelines adopted for use by DoD in
progress to date. 1999 for evaluation of contractor manage-
ment systems. A complete listing of the
BUDGETED COST OF WORK SCHED- guidelines is contained in DoD 5000.2-R,
ULED (BCWS) — The sum of the budgets Appendix VI.
for all work (work packages, planning pack-
FLOAT — The period of time that an activ- INTEGRATED PRODUCT TEAM (IPT)
ity may be delayed without becoming a — Team composed of representatives from
critical activity. Also known as slack or all appropriate functional disciplines work-
path float/slack. ing together to build successful programs,
identify and resolve issues, and make
FREE FLOAT — The float that a single sound and timely recommendations to fa-
activity can experience without affecting cilitate decision making. There are three
any other activity. types of IPTs: overarching IPTs (OIPTs)
focus on strategic guidance, program as-
GANTT CHART — A graphic portrayal of sessment, and issue resolution; working
a project which shows the activities to be IPTs (WIPTs) identify and resolve program
completed and the time to complete repre- issues, determine program status, and seek
sented by horizontal lines drawn in pro- opportunities for acquisition reform; and
portion to the duration of the activity. Some program-level IPTs focus on program ex-
Gantt charts will be able to show the float ecution and may include representatives
for the activity. from both government and after contract
award industry.
An event-based plan that depicts the over- LINE OF BALANCE (LOB) — A graphic
all structure of the program and the key display of scheduled units versus actual
processes, activities, and milestones. It de- units produced over a given set of critical
fines the accomplishments and criteria for schedule control points on a particular day.
each event in the plan.
INTEGRATED MASTER SCHEDULE (MPS)—The top-level schedule for the pro-
(IMS) — The detailed task and timing of gram. It is prepared by the government
the work effort in the IMP. A networked and includes all policy and contractual
schedule that identifies all IMP events, events/activities. It is derived from the
accomplishment, and criteria, and the ex- Program WBS and provides the baseline
pected dates of each. for all subordinate schedules. It some-
times is called the program structure/
agement technique that simultaneously MILESTONE (MS) — The point when a
integrates all essential acquisition activi- recommendation is made and approval
ties through the use of multidisciplinary sought regarding starting or continuing
teams to optimize the design, manufactur- (proceeding to next phase) an acquisition
ing, and supportability processes. IPPD program. Milestones are: 0 [Approval to
facilitates meeting cost and performance Conduct Concept Studies], I [Approval to
objectives from product concept though Begin a New Acquisition Program], II [Ap-
teamwork through Integrated Product proval to Enter Engineering & Manufac-
Teams (IPTs). turing Development (EMD)], and III [Pro-
duction or Fielding/Development and
Operational Support (PF/DOS) approval].
A significant event that marks certain
progress, such as completion of a phase of RISK — A measure of the inability to
the project. achieve program objectives within defined
cost and schedule constraints. Risk is asso-
MILESTONE CHART — A graphic ciated with all aspects of the program, e.g.,
portrayal of a program/project that shows threat, technology, design processes, work
the events to be completed on a timeline. breakdown structure (WBS) elements, etc.
It has two components: the probability of
NETWORK SCHEDULE — A scheduling failing to achieve a particular outcome and
technique that provides the means for de- the consequences of failing to achieve that
fining task relationships and relationship outcome.
lags. These may include such precedence
relationships as “Start to Start,” “Finish to RISK MANAGEMENT — All plans and
Finish," and "Start to Finish." actions taken to identify, assess, mitigate,
and continuously track, control, and docu-
PERT — See Program Evaluation Review ment program risks.
SCHEDULE — Series of things to be done
PERT Chart — A graphic portrayal of mile- in sequence of events within given period;
stones, activities, and their dependency a timetable.
upon other activities for completion and
depiction of the critical path. SCHEDULE RISK — The risk that a pro-
gram will not meet its acquisition strategy
PRECEDENCE DIAGRAM METHOD — schedule objectives or major milestones
A network diagram in which the activities established by the acquisition authority.
are labeled in the nodes, usually boxes.
PRODUCTION SCHEDULES — Chrono- the schedule performance of a program. It
logical controls used by management to is the algebraic difference between earned
regulate efficiently and economically the value (BCWP) and planned value (BCWS)
operational sequences of production. (Variance = BCWP - BCWS). A positive
value is a favorable condition while a
PROGRAM EVALUATION REVIEW negaive value is unfavorable.
TECHNIQUE (PERT) — A technique for
management of a program from inception SCHEDULING — The prescribing of when
through to completion by constructing a and where each operation necessary to the
network model of integrated activities and manufacture of a product is to be per-
events and periodically evaluating the formed.
time/cost implications of progress.
RESOURCE LEVELING — A process (WBS) — An organized method to break
whereby resources are sorted out among down a project into logical subdivisions or
tasks and activities to identify and avoid subprojects at lower and lower levels of
conflicts between scheduling and avail- details. It is very useful in organizing a
ability. project. See MIL-HDBK 881 for examples
of WBSs.

Q. W. Fleming, J. W. Bronn, and G. C. Defense Systems Management College,

Humphreys, Project and Production Schedul- Earned Value Management Textbook, DSMC,
ing, Probus Publishing Co., Chicago, IL, Fort Belvoir, VA, April 16, 1998.
Office of the Under Secretary of Defense
H. Kerzner, Project Management: A Systems (Acquisition and Technology), DoD Inte-
Approach to Planning, Scheduling, and Con- grated Product and Process Development Hand-
trolling, Van Nostrand Reinhold, New York, book, DoD, Washington, DC, 1998.
NY, 1998.
D. T. Hulett, “Project Schedule Risk As-
M. D. Rosenau, Jr., Successful Project Man- sessment,” Project Management Journal,
agement: A Step-by-Step Approach With Prac- March 1995.
tical Examples (2nd Edition), Van Nostrand
Reinhold, New York, NY, 1992. PMI Standards Committee, A Guide to the
Project Management Body of Knowledge,
D. C. Cleland, Field Guide to Project Manage- Project Management Institute, Newton
ment, Van Nostrand Reinhold, New York, Square, PA, 1996.
NY, 1998.
J. R. Knutson, How To Be A Successful Project
J. J. Mayer, Time Management for Dummies Manager, IEEE Successful Management
(2nd edition), IDG Books Worldwide, Inc., Series, Undated.
Foster City, CA, 1999.
J.P. Lewis, Project Planning, Scheduling &
Defense Systems Management College, Control, McGraw-Hill, New York, NY, 1995.
Acquisition Strategy Guide, DSMC, Fort
Belvoir, VA, 1998.


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