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Best Practices for Developing Project Schedules
About course

What are the consequences to your project if the schedule is incorrect? How confident in the completion date would you be, given that most project schedules contain errors that greatly reduced the schedule accuracy? This 7-hour course covers the essential skills needed to create and maintain a correct project schedule that contains tasks and resources. Topics include a brief review of schedule types, typical formats, critical path method calculations and interpretation of float values. Scheduling best practices will be explained including correct use of task relationships, how to handle the uncertainty in task duration, check for network logic breaks, and correct use of constraints, summary tasks and contingency. Effective methods for adding resources to tasks, reporting progress, handling changes and compressing the schedule will also be discussed. This course includes practical scheduling exercises and participants will have the option of doing the exercises on their computer.

Who should attend

This course is intended for Project Managers, IT Managers, Business Analysts and anybody else with some experience preparing schedules and who want to develop expertise in creating and modifying project schedules using scheduling software.

Course features

This 7-hour course on Best Practices for Developing Project Schedules covers the critical skills necessary to create and maintain a correct project schedule that contains tasks and resources.  Upon completion of this course, you will be able to: 

  • Effectively use Precedence Diagramming and the Critical Path Method
  • Describe and use the types of task relationships
  • Describe the proper use of constraints
  • Explain the relationship between duration, work and availability, and how picking the task type affects schedule calculations
  • Use scheduling best practices to prepare a correct schedule
  • Know how to resource load a schedule
  • Check a schedule for mistakes
  • Describe the procedure that should be followed when preparing a project schedule
Course outline

Type of Schedule and Level of Detail

  • Schedule Types & Formats
  • Appropriate Level of Detail for Schedules
  • Naming of Deliverables and Activities
  • Showing Activities in the Schedule

Scheduling Fundamentals Review

  • Task Sequencing & Relationship Types
  • Schedule Development using Critical Path Method
  • Understanding Critical Path and Float

Project Tasks Duration

  • Estimating Time Duration
  • Handling Uncertainty in Duration Calculations
  • Use of Buffers

Scheduling Best Practices

  • Checking the Network Logic
  • Schedule Contingency
  • Proper Use of Constraints
  • Task Type Impact on Schedule Calculations
  • Summary Tasks and Milestones

Project Resources

  • Using a Resource Pool
  • Adding Resources to Tasks
  • Resource Leveling Methods

Keeping Your Project on Track

  • Establishing & Entering Task Progress
  • Interrupting Task Work
  • Dealing with Changes
  • Methods for Compressing a Schedule
Course information
Duration: 7 hours
Earn: 7 PDUs
Delivery Method: Traditional Classroom
Knowledge areas addressed

This course addresses the following knowledge areas of the Project Management Institute’s A Guide to the Project Management Body of Knowledge (PMBOK® Guide):

  • Project Scope Management
  • Project Schedule Management