There lies the key challenge. How do you manage the uncertainty that is naturally involved with the estimating process? Since these estimates form the foundation for the project schedule and the project budget, we must implement techniques and approaches that allow us to properly manage this risk and the expectations of our stakeholders.
While this subject of estimating and risk could easily slip into a review of statistics, probability, standard deviations, skewed distributions, and Monte Carlo analysis, we will not go there. In many real-world environments, these advanced concepts and techniques are not utilized to estimate work and to manage the associated risk, and these topics would be outside the scope of this book. Our focus will be understanding the impact that estimating the work has on our overall risk management approach and what we can do to minimize the those risks.
Estimating the work is a fundamental risk analysis step. Not only do you estimate work efforts, but you also identify the assumptions that support the estimate and the key risk factors that may impact the accuracy of those estimates. These key outputs are depicted in Figure 7.3.
Figure 7.3. Estimates are key inputs for scheduling, budgeting, and risk management.
Part i. Project Management Jumpstart
Project Management Overview
The Project Manager
Essential Elements for any Successful Project
Part ii. Project Planning
Defining a Project
Planning a Project
Developing the Work Breakdown Structure
Estimating the Work
Developing the Project Schedule
Determining the Project Budget
Part iii. Project Control
Controlling a Project
Managing Project Changes
Managing Project Deliverables
Managing Project Issues
Managing Project Risks
Managing Project Quality
Part iv. Project Execution
Leading a Project
Managing Project Communications
Keys to Better Project Team Performance
Ending a Project