Budgeting Best Practices Part 4 of 6

Part 4: Develop Schedule

Background

Determining your project budget has been discussed several times on this website. The reason is that many projects experience budget overruns. Many project managers are still having problems determining a good project budget. Based on these facts, I decided to run a series on budgeting best practices for the rest of this year.

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Step 4: Develop Schedule

In the previous step we developed the WBS. The next step in getting our budget is to develop the schedule. You do this by scheduling each activity you have in the WBS.

To schedule an activity you have to determine the duration of the activity and the dependencies of the activities. Dependencies are needed because some activities cannot start before other activities are finished.

 

Scheduling Best Practices

  • Make sure to use all the WBS elements as activities in your schedule. A schedule is not a stand alone activity: it is derived from your WBS which in turn is derived from your scope.
  • Use realistic durations for your activities. We are often tempted to deliver a schedule with short durations. Be aware of this, and make sure your durations are realistic.
  • Add dependencies to complete your schedule. Visualize in what sequence the activities have to take place and then add the dependencies accordingly.

Next Steps

In Part 5 of this series (Determine Budget) we will cost each of the activities we scheduled in this part of the series.

 

Related References

Budgeting Best Practices Part 3 of 6

Budgeting Best Practices Part 2 of 6

Budgeting Best Practices Part 1 of 6

Determining Your Project Budget

Scope Control Best Practices

Project Management Quick Start

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