I have written several times on this blog about the importance and use of project schedules and predictive project scheduling. Therefore, you probably can discern how important I believe a project schedule to be in effective project management. Now it appears that changes are afoot in the PMI PMBOK world through the PSS Working Group to change the approved terminology about schedules.
To understand the issue better, I recommend you review this “call to action” paper from Eric Uyttewaal and Murray Woolf on the MPUG web site. After your review and consideration, they request that you share your opinion with the secretary of the working group. You need to act quickly, as the decisive meeting happens in January.
Here are a few key points from their article:
- “The term ‘schedule’ is neither used, nor defined in the PMBOK (4th edition) and Practice Standard for Scheduling (1st Edition). Replacing this term is a new term, ‘Schedule Model,’ which by its wording gives the impression that the schedule is the matter being modeled.”
- (ed. In our opinion …) “The project schedule models reality, whether that reality is anticipated or already realized. No rational member of the project team would ever construe the schedule itself as the actual reality — only as a representation of a possible reality.”
- A schedule, project schedule and scheduling have a common understanding among practitioners and, more importantly, senior management and customer. Changing to the term schedule model does not facilitate communication or understanding.