What level of confidence do you have in your Task Estimates? Who estimates the tasks and what methodology do they use?
I have found that despite all efforts to construct a schedule that delivers the project on time, if the task estimates are wrong — the schedule will fail.
I have built many schedules that required re-baselining. This caused me to study why these initial schedules were so poor. What I found primarily was that the task definitions were poor, and secondarily that the task estimations were poor. As a result of these findings, I added 2 techniques to my methods:
Tasks need to be released at the correct time, to the proper resource, and be confirmed to be successful.
This article presents 3 essential steps that are needed — before the Tasks are started.
1. Task Scoping & Definition
The high-level work breakdown structure (WBS) created during the planning stage a of a project is usually sufficient to create preliminary task definitions.
After a preliminary definition is created, the next step is to have a resource, who is a good candidate for the task, confirm the Task definition.
Task estimates must be accurate to achieve project success. Most of all they effect the budget and schedule of a project. Currently worldwide, 7 out of 10 projects fail. And they fail because they are over budget, or finish late. This is tragic, not to mention expensive.
The good news is project managers can overcome these problems. The solution is to create excellent task estimates. This article focuses on Execution Task Estimates, including how to use them effectively.