The APM have Launched a New Scheduling Maturity Model

Paul Naybour

The APM have launched a new Scheduling Maturity Model. This is aimed to help organisations assess the quality of the plans they use to manage projects. It is the vital tool for project managers in client organisations, as it is often difficult for client organisations to know if contractors are submitting a high quality plan for a project.

What is Schedule Maturity and how is it used?

The Scheduling Maturity Model is a comprehensive and systematic review of scheduling maturity. This can be used to aid process improvement by identifying shortfalls against the target standard.

The model is based on work done as part of the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic games. Overall it looks very robust, including many of the elements you would expect to see in a project control system. Your maturity is assesses on a scale of 1 to 5 with one being basic and 5 being world class. They don’t say what score the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic games achieved, but we can assume it was high otherwise they wouldn’t have endorsed the model.
The model looks very structured around the following attributes

Process and Toolset Attribute 1 – Use of a Scheduling Process & Compliance to Contractual RequirementsAttribute 2 – Scheduling Tools are suited to Enterprise Needs
Attribute 3 – Schedule Analysis Products are current and used throughout the Enterprise
Attribute 4 – Defined Organisation/Roles & Responsibilities
Schedule Structure and Hierarchy Attribute 5 – Capturing Project and Customer RequirementsAttribute 6 – Basis of Estimate
Attribute 7 – Deliverables Defined and Documented
Attribute 8 – Structure of the Schedule
Attribute 9 – Project Scheduling and Development of Schedules
Attribute 10 – Recurring Schedule Key Characteristics
Attribute 11 – Detail of the Schedule
Schedule Integration Attribute 12 – Integration of MilestonesAttribute 13 – Schedule Integration
Attribute 14 – Schedule Logic/Dependencies
Attribute 15 – Critical Path and the use of Float
Schedule/Resource/Cost Integration Attribute 16 – ResourcingAttribute 17 – Schedule/Cost Integration
Schedule Risk Attribute 18 – Consideration of Schedule Risk
Schedule Update and Maintenance Attribute 19 – Baseline Progress and ControlAttribute 20 – Schedule Analysis
Attribute 21 – Schedule Change Control
Environment Attribute 22 – Scheduling Roles and ResponsibilitiesAttribute 23 – Project Scheduling Resources
Attribute 24 – Team and Manager Buy In
Attribute 25 – Stakeholder (Customer, Partner & Supplier) Engagement
Attribute 26 – Planning and Scheduling Competencies
Attribute 27 – The Use of the Schedule as a Communications Aid
Attribute 28 – Scheduling as a Decision Support Tool

For each attribute the user is asked to evaluate the current level of maturity and the target level. It model included plenty of detail and guidance against which to conduct the assessment and it should be possible to apply it without external consultant support.

Benefits of Schedule Maturity Assessment

The model identifies the following benefits of maturity assessment including

  • Identifying strengths and weaknesses
  • Providing a highly structured, fact-based, objective, consistent and repeatable approach to identifying and assessing a project’s scheduling, and measuring progress periodically.
  • Creating a common language and conceptual framework for the way you manage and improve scheduling on your project and, if applicable, other projects within an organisation.
  • Educating people in your project on the fundamental elements of scheduling and how they relate to their roles and responsibilities.
  • Involving people at all levels in process improvement.
  • Ranking project scheduling maturity within an organisation or across the supply chain.
  • Identifying and allow the sharing of best practice across projects within an organisation.
  • Assessing and presenting the findings from a variety of scheduling reviews in a format that is easy to understand.
  • Facilitating comparisons with other projects and programmes.
  • Supporting the development of your business plan and strategy.

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