Learn about the planning and the control aspects of program scheduling.
- If the program components define the tempo of the program, where do a program manager's activities fall in? The program manager is primarily responsible for delivering benefits, so she will have to manage the project components thoroughly. And these activities make up the brunt of the program schedule management. When I've been managing programs, the first thing I did every morning was to review the current project component schedules to see that they are on time. My project managers were expected to tell me in advance if they see any schedule problems coming up so that we could be proactive and not reactive.
The program governance board, the overseers of my program, expected the schedule information to be accurate in real time. And what they disliked more than anything were negative surprises. Remember, it's essential to be flexible as a program manager. Changes do happen within an organization. For example, you did a great job in planning the program and you have a stellar group of project managers running the project components. Then either the program sponsor or even the portfolio manager will come to you and tell you that everything is different today.
What do we do first? Well, we need to take stock of where we are and start to replan. This is where a program baseline becomes invaluable. A baseline is our starting point, and we use this to compare what we said we were going to deliver and how we actually held up. In this case, I ask the following questions. Where are we now and what changes need to be made to the plan? Do we have all the project managers on board? Once we get the new plan in place and our team on board, we seek the approval from the program governance board.
LinkedIn Learning (Lynda.com) is a PMI Registered Education Provider. This course qualifies for professional development units (PDUs). To view the activity and PDU details for this course, click here.
The PMI Registered Education Provider logo is a registered mark of the Project Management Institute, Inc.
- What is program management?
- Who are program managers?
- Program versus project
- Program life-cycle phases
- Aligning programs to an organization's strategies
- Analyzing needs and planning programs
- Delivering and sustaining benefits from programs
- Working with program stakeholders
- Supporting program governance activities
- Managing program finances and resources
- Scheduling programs
- Managing program scope and quality