Introducing Project Time Management - Estimating Activity Durations

11 important questions on Introducing Project Time Management - Estimating Activity Durations

Which 4 activities are required for completing the project schedule and the estimated project duration?

  • Task identification
  • Sequencing of activities
  • Resource definition
  • Estimation of activity duration
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Who does the activity duration estimating?

The people completing the work (so not the project manager).
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What are the inputs for the duration estimate creation process?

  • Schedule management plan
  • Activity List
  • Activity Attributes
  • Activity Resource Requirements
  • Resource calendars
  • The project statement (constraints and assumptions)
  • Risk register
  • Resource breakdown structure
  • Enterprise Environmental Factors
  • Organizational Process Assets, mainly coming from historical information such as historic project files, commercial estimating databases, project team members memory
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What are ideal conditions for analogous estimating to be a thrustwhorthy source for estimates?

  • The activities are identical to the historical project
  • The resources are the same as the one who completed the historical project.
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What is more reliable, analogous estimating or predictions from project team members?

Analogous estimating, it uses historical information, and is a form of expert judgment.
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What is the role of quantitative estimates?

They use mathematical formules to predict how long an activity will take based on the quantities of work to be completed.
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When would one use the three-point estimate technique for estimating?

If the work has never been done there are lots of unknowns, and thus risk. Then it makes sense to use the three-point estimating technique.
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What's the difference between the PERT and the three point estimate?

  • the Program evaluation and review technique (PERT) uses the following formula for the average = optimistic + 4 x most likely + pessimistic / 6. And thus puts more weight on the most likely estimate in the average.
  • The  three point average uses an average of the three
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What is the purpose of the Delphi Technique in creating estimates?

Less biased, more honest estimates will be delivered as input to create a final consensus among project team members on the final duration estimate.
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What are the reasons for Parkinson's Law "Work expands so as to fill the time available for its completion" ?

  • Hidden time not being aware off
  • Procrastination of project members
  • Demands from multiple projects
  • On schedule delivery - sandbag the results
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How should a project manager deal with Parkinson's Law?

  • Incorporate expert judgment and historical information in the estimates
  • Stress a need for accurate estimates
  • Add in reserve time
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