- What is a Project Schedule in Project Management?
- The Purpose of Project Schedule
- Project Scheduling VS Project Planning
- Types and Techniques of Project Schedule
- Things to Include on Your Project Schedule
- How To Create Better Project Scheduling?
- 1. Define and establish your project scope
- 2. Get feedback from your project stakeholder
- 3. Take your time to define all the tasks carefully
- 4. Be realistic when estimate the task duration
- 5. Be flexible but not too flexible
- 6. Monitor your project scope and critical path
- 7. Define the risk, mitigate and calculate the impact
- 8. Give recognition and celebrate every milestones
- 9. Your project schedule should be accessible for your team
- FoxPlan: Free Project Scheduling Software
A simple timeline for a project may come to mind when considering a project schedule. Surely, we have all made project timelines, haven’t we? However, when it comes to constructing a true project schedule, you’ll need something that can be used by everyone on the team and that will help them stay on track.
In this guide, we are going to discuss the project schedule in further detail and describe what they consist of as well as their consequences for you. Understanding the basic things about project schedule will have a substantial positive impact on your business.
What is a Project Schedule in Project Management? #
Since people have kept task lists and calendars for a long time, it’s hard to pinpoint the origin of project scheduling. In the business world, however, they have started to become more important. Every business requires project scheduling, although you may take a different strategy than other companies or even teammates.
So, back to the basic question, what is a project schedule? Well, a project schedule is a timetable that organizes work, resources, and due dates in a timely manner.
The Purpose of Project Schedule #
The scheduling of a project is essential since it has a significant role in the project’s success. Here are some of the benefits you’ll get from making a good project schedule.
- When project scheduling is performed effectively, the entire project runs more smoothly.
- In order to get the most out of your project, it’s important to follow a project scheduling procedure from the start.
- It also provides the opportunity to identify problems early and notify clients if a deadline is not achievable. Project scheduling benefits the entire project team, not just the project manager. It is a win-win.
- Everyone is aware of what will occur and when. Everyone is held responsible for the same deadlines.
- Other managers will be able to manage resources for your project efficiently and predict when resources will become available for other initiatives.
Project Scheduling VS Project Planning #
Project scheduling and project planning are two different things. These two terms are frequently used synonymously, despite the fact that they each play a unique part in the accomplishment of a project’s successful completion.
On a more macro level, the project management plan serves as the master blueprint, whilst the project schedule delineates the particular activities.
Project planning generally includes choosing the polices, project methodologies, and processes that are necessary to complete the project on schedule. The project schedule, on the other hand, transforms the plans, scope, and budget into an operating timescale.
Types and Techniques of Project Schedule #
It’s up to you and your business to decide which schedules to follow. A unified structure and a strategy to keep everyone on track can benefit your entire team. These are few of many types and techniques to use when you are scheduling your project to finish on time;
1. Task List #
To-do lists are helpful if you don’t have much to accomplish. A to-do list helps you keep track of your tasks and ensures they get done fast. Using these lists can be tough if you have many chores or activities in varying stages of completion. If you’re not accountable for all the duties, it’s hard to make a to-do list for others. They have trouble communicating.
2. Gantt Chart #
Gantt charts let you keep track of your project or team’s tasks. You can track the work, when it needs to be begun and completed, who is accountable, and more. You can converse immediately in the chart, keeping everyone informed. This chart is easy to read and organizes everything so your initiatives stay on schedule.
3. Kanban #
Like Gantt charts, these boards will allow you to track the same information. You won’t have any trouble arranging your chores on each of the cards, and it won’t be difficult for you to move the cards from one area to the next, too, so that they can be moved from the jobs that need to be done to the tasks that are now being worked on to the duties that have been completed. You can give alternative start and finish dates and set up categories however you wish. You’ll still have team communication and easy project modifications.
4. Calendar #
A calendar is fantastic in theory, but it’s hard to keep up with. Everyone can’t see a paper calendar at once. They keep checking the calendar. It’s hard to update items, interact with everyone, and your calendar only works if everyone checks it everyday. Online calendars can solve many of these issues, but they require constant maintenance.
5. Critical Path Method (CPM) #
The critical route technique sums the durations of all key operations, taking dependencies into account, to find the earliest possible completion date for the project.
6. PERT Charts #
In comparison to the critical path method, the program assessment and review technique makes use of an alternative approach to calculate the amount of time required. We estimate the lowest possible time, the longest possible time, and the time that is most likely to be needed to complete each activity. The time estimate for each activity is derived by calculating the mean of the three different estimates.
Things to Include on Your Project Schedule #
During the planning phase of a project, schedules are developed, and these schedules play a critical role in the development of the project plan. The project plan is where the timeline strategy, schedule baseline, deliverables, and needs are specified. The purpose of the project schedule is to serve as a roadmap for the project team to follow if they’re in the execution stage.
After that, during the phase known as execution, the schedule baseline is contrasted with the actual progress being made on the project.
When developing a schedule for a project, the following components are taken into consideration:
- Project deliverables
- List of task
- Timeline for each task
- Duration for each task
- Task dependency
- Project budget
- Resources allocation
- Risk assessment
How To Create Better Project Scheduling? #
When originally designing your project, consider the following three questions;
- What do we need to do?
- When will we do it?
- Who will be responsible to do it?
When you have determined these answers, creating a comprehensive project timeline will be considerably simpler. If you are using FoxPlan to manage your project, you can start your project scheduling in 9 steps!
1. Define and establish your project scope #
Before even starting with scheduling, make sure to establish all the project scope for your project. This is the base to go to the next step. You need to make sure that you and your team understand the goal, objectives, deliverables, timeline, etc.
2. Get feedback from your project stakeholder #
Solicit the feedback of both your client and the important project stakeholders. Lean on the knowledge and expertise of others when developing a timetable that accounts for every contingency.
3. Take your time to define all the tasks carefully #
Determine and compile all of the duties in detail. Examine them in light of the project’s parameters. Look through completed projects for potential ideas. Check to see that nothing has been overlooked. It is challenging enough to finish projects on schedule without adding the additional stress of attempting to fit in unfinished business along the way.
4. Be realistic when estimate the task duration #
When making time estimates, try to be as accurate as possible. You need to conduct an in-depth analysis of the assignment in comparison to the assets you have or the availability of those resources. Utilize various tools and methods for scheduling, such as the CPM method or PERT, in order to achieve higher levels of precision.
5. Be flexible but not too flexible #
You can’t expect everything to run smoothly, so give yourself some leeway. Though not much; else, people won’t participate and budgets would be wiped out.
6. Monitor your project scope and critical path #
(Insert Screenshot here, CPM / task dependency on FoxPlan)
Maintain constant vigilance over both the project scope and the critical path. During the course of the implementation of your project, there is the potential for things to change, and you will need to keep a continual watch on this.
7. Define the risk, mitigate and calculate the impact #
Think about the consequences that could result from all the risks you’ve identified. Keep in mind that it is highly improbable that all of the risks you have listed will really materialize, so make sure to account for probability as well.
8. Give recognition and celebrate every milestones #
The value of keeping your staff motivated by celebrating milestones as they are reached adds up to an amazing amount.
9. Your project schedule should be accessible for your team #
Make sure that everyone on the team can get a hold of the schedule. Due to the importance of this communication document, you should ensure that it is both complete and straightforward.
FoxPlan: Free Project Scheduling Software #
When it comes to project management, scheduling is one of the most challenging tasks. But, when you use the features in FoxPlan, a cloud-based software, you can streamline and improve the efficiency of the process of organizing delivery dates on your estimations.
You have never had such a firm grasp on the timing of your project, thanks to features such as visual Gantt charts, resource, budget and task management which can be readily connected, and a dashboard that displays real-time information.
Project schedule becomes easier with FoxPlan. So, why wait? Sign up for FREE today or contact our representative for the FoxPlan live demo!