How should you show detail in your project schedule? It depends on how big the project is and the experience of your team. Choose the level of detail and schedules needed for a project.
- [Instructor] How should you show detail in your project schedule? It depends on how big the project is and the experience of your team. For large or complicated projects, you're likely to need schedules at varying levels of detail. A summary schedule provides an overview of your project. It's short and sweet. Key milestones and one or two levels of major deliverables. It's ideal for showing the big picture of a big project to management or anyone else who doesn't need the nitty-gritty.
The next level of project schedule includes all milestones and deliverables down to work packages. Remember, a work package represents the work required to produce a project deliverable. This level of detail shows the entire project without getting into the activities needed to complete a work package. Finally, a detailed schedule includes milestones, deliverables and the activities that must be completed to deliver the work packages.
For small projects, you might create only one detailed schedule like this. You can flesh out your schedule as you learn more about the project. Early on, create a rough estimate for phases or deliverables. As you learn more, develop a detailed schedule with more accurate estimates. In our example, we could start with an estimate of eight weeks for the manuscript deliverable with no detailed activities.
After the training guide outline and specifications are complete, you have the info you need to create a detailed schedule, an accurate estimate for writing the manuscript. With large projects, you might break the schedule up into several detailed schedules, one for each major deliverable like the training guide and website in our example. When contractors or vendors work on your project, include their schedules in your overall schedule so you capture all the project work.
With most project management software tools, you can link your detailed schedules to a high level schedule. That way, you can look at your project from whichever perspective you need. The schedules you create depend on the information you need to control the project and communicate with stakeholders and team members.
Note: This course aligns with best practices from A Guide to the Project Management Body of Knowledge, (PMBOK® Guide) - Sixth Edition, published by the Project Management Institute®.
- Developing a schedule management plan
- Identifying project activities
- Adding milestones
- Organizing work
- Estimating duration and work
- Handling lag in dependencies
- Defining resources
- Assigning resources to activities
- Working with part-time and remote workers
- Fine-tuning assignments
- Optimizing schedules
- Managing and changing schedules