Project Management Engineering

project management banner 4There are many different methods for project management.  In general, the authors of this site subscribe to the methods and techniques laid out by the Project Management Institute.  The reasoning is that the PMI has developed a comprehensive and scalable process for managing projects across multiple industries.  For a complete and thorough education on Project Management, the Project Management Body of Knowledge (PMBOK) is an excellent resource and should be referenced.

It is important to note that every project may not support the techniques laid out by PMI.  For instances like these, it is up to the project manager (PM) to decide to what extent each knowledge area and process should be utilized.  However a PM should be familiar with all aspects laid out in the PMBOK.

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Project Management Engineering

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Nomenclature & Symbols


  • \(AC\)  -  actual cost
  • \(BAC\)  -  budget at completion
  • \(CAPEX\)  -  capital expenditure
  • \(CPI\)  -  cost performance index
  • \(DCF\)  - discounted cash flow
  • \(EV\)  -  earned value
  • \(EAM\)  -  enterprise asset management
  • \(EWO\)  -  engineering work order
  • \(PRV\)  -  estimated plant replacement value
  • \( ISSC \)  -  Information Systems Steering Committee
  • \(OPEX\)  -  operational expenditure
  • \( PROJ \)  -  project
  • \( PM \)  -  project management
  • \( PME \)  -  project management engineer


Nomenclature, Symbols, and Units


Project Management Engineering GlossaRy


  • Accured Cost  -  Earmarked for the project and for which payment is due, but has not been made.
  • Actual Cost  -  The realized cost incured for the work performed on an activity during a specific time period.
  • Add-on Work  -  Additional work added to a maintenance schedule after the scheduled cut-off time.
  • Advanced Product Quality Planning  -  A structured method of defining and establishing the steps necessaty to assure that a product satisfies the customer.
  • Approved Vendor List  -  Ensures purchased products arrive on time and meet your quality control.
  • Authorization  -  The dicision that triggers the allocation of funding needed to carry out the project.
  • Authorization Work  -  The effort which has been defined, plus that work for which authorization has been given, but for which defined contract costs have not been agreed upon.


  • Baseline Schedule  -  A fixed project schedule.
  • Best Practice  -  Something that we have learned from experience on a number of similar projects.
  • Bill of Materials  -  A list of parts, raw materials, and accessories, descriptions, part name, part number, quantity, reference designation, procurement type, that make up the assembly or entire product.
  • Brainstorming  -  The unstructured generation of ideas by a group of people.
  • Budget  -  The funds allocated to the project that represent the estimated planned expenditures.
  • Budget at Completion  -  The sum of all budgets established for the work to be performed.
  • Budget Cost  -  The cost anticipated at the start of a project.
  • Budgeting and Cost Management  -  The estimating of costs and the setting of an agreed budget, and the management of actual and forcast costs against that budget.
  • Budgeting  - Time phased financial requirements.


  • Capital Cost  -  The carrying cost in a balance sheet or acquiring an asset and bringing it to the condition where it is capable of performing its intended function over a future series of periods.
  • Capital Expenditure  -  The amount of money that needs to be spent on a project to see it from design through completion.

  • Cash Flow  -  Cash receipts and payments in a specific period.
  • Change Request  -  Outlines a problem and proposes an action to address the problem.
  • Conflict Management  - The process of identifting and addressing differences.
  • Contingencies  -  Planned actions for minimizing the damage caused by a problem.
  • Constraint  -  A condition or occurance that might limit, restrict, or regulate the project.
  • Cost Baseline  -  The approved version of work package cost estimates and contingency reserve that can be changed using formal change control procedures.
  • Cost Benefit Analysis  -  The relationship between the costs of undertaking a task or project, and the benefits likely to arise from the changed situation.  
  • Cost Management Plan  -  A component of a project or program management plan that describes how costs will be planned, structured, and controlled.
  • Cost Performance Index  - A measure of the cost efficency of budgeted resources expressed as the ratio of earned value to actual cost.
  • Critical Activity  -  A critical activity has zero or negative float.  This activity has no allowance for work slippage.
  • Critical Path  -  The path in a project schedule that has the longest duration.
  • Critical Path Activity  -  Any activity on the critical path in a project schedule.


  • Deliverable  -  Any unique and verifiable product, result, or capability to perform a service that is performed to complete a process, phase, or project.
  • Direct Costs  -  Costs specifically attributed to an activity or group of activities without apportionment.
  • Discounted Cash Flow  -  The relating future cash flows and outflows over the life of a project or operation to a common base value.
  • Document Control  -  The function of management and controlling product documentation.
  • Downtime  -  The amount of time that equipment is not operating or out of service, as a result of equipment failure.
  • Duration  -  The length of time required or planned for the execution of a project activity.


  • Earned Value  -  The measure of work performed in terms of the budget authorized for that work.
  • Employee Management & Time Tracking  -  Time tracking software manages labor availability, work order time tracking, reporting, costs on work orders, etc.
  • Engineering Change Notice  -  A form that communicates the details of an approved change to someone who needs to know about the change.
  • Engineering Change Request  -  A suggestion that can be submitted to management to solve a problem or make improvement to a product.
  • Engineering Work Order  -  Initiates an engineering investigation, engineering design activity or engineering modifications to an item of equipment.
  • Enterprise Asset Management  -  A type of maintenance software that collects and analyzes data for physical assets during all phases of the asset cycle, including the acquisition, maintenance, and disposal phase.
  • Estimated Plant Replacement Value  -  The approximate cost to replace the existing assets with new assets to ahieve the same production capability.
  • Estimating  -  An approximation of project time and costs targets that is refined throughout the project life cycle.


  • Failure Rate  -  The anticipated number of times that an asset or piece of equipment fails in a specific period of time.
  • Fast Tracking  -  A schedule compression technique in which activities or phases normally done in sequence are performed in parallel for at least a portion of their duration.
  • Fill Order  -  An order that has had all its requirements met and can be closed.
  • Fill Rate  -  The percentage of orders that are shipped in full and on time and were met through current available stock.
  • Finished Goods  -  An item that is manufactured for sale.
  • Fixed Asset  -  A long-term tangible asset or piece of equipment that a business owns and uses in its operations to generate income.


  • Good Manufacturing Practice  -  A system of processes, procedures, and documents that help ensure that the products are consistantly produces and controlled according to quality standards.


  • Historical Data  -  Information on archived projects, including documents and reports.


  • Incurred Costs  -  Sum of actual and committed costs, whether invoiced/paid or not, at a specific time.
  • Indirect Cost  -  Costs associated with a project that cannot be directly attributed to an activity or group of activities.
  • Information Systems Steering Committee  -  A committee that provides management representatives from all the key organizations across the institution.




  • Lessons Learned  -  A set of statements captured after completion of a project or a portion of a project.


  • Management Developement  -  All aspects of staff planning, recruitment, developement, training and assessment.
  • Mission Statement  -  A brief summary, approximately one or two sentences, that sums up the background, purposes and benefits of the project. 
  • Mitigation  -  Actions taken to eliminate or reduce risk by reducing the probability and/or impact of occurrence.


  • Negotiation  - Satisfying needs by reaching agreement or compromise with other parties.
  • New product Developement  -  The total process that takes a service or a product from concept to market.
  • New Product Introduction  -  All the activities within an organization to define, develope and launch a new or improved product.


  • Objective  -  Something towards which work is to be directed.
  • Operational Expenditure  -  The amount of money that needs to be spent after a projects completion to continue its use.

  • Operative Rule  -  The business rules an organization chooses to enforce as a matter of policy.
  • Organization  -  An autonomous unit within an enterprise under the management of a single individual or board.
  • Organization Modeling  -  An analysis technique used to describe roles, responsibilities and reporting structures that exist within an organization.
  • Organizational Process Asset  -  All materials used by groups within an organization to define, implement, tailor and maintain their processes.
  • Organizational Unit  -  A recognized association of people in the context of an organization or enterprise.
  • Overhead  -  Costs incured that cannot be directly related to the prducts or serviced produced.


  • Peer Review  -  A validation technique in which a small group of stakeholders evaluates a portion of a work product to find errors to improve its quality.
  • Policy  -  A set of ideas, course of principles of action adopted by or proposed for a system or organization.
  • Process  -  Also called procedure, an operation or an activity.
  • Process Center  - A resource or collection of resources, commonly people or machines, where an operation or set of operations is performed.
  • Process Control  -  The monitoring of the production process through software.
  • Process Management  -  The act of planning, coordinating, and overseeing processes with a view to improving outputs and reducing costs.
  • Process Map  - A graphical flowchart identifying the operations in a process, steps in each operation and work time for each step.
  • Process Model  -  A visual model or representation of the sequencial flow and control logic of a set of related activities or actions.
  • Process Time  -  The time a job spends at an individual station in a production system from the time the station begins working on it, till the time the station finishes.
  • Product  -  Something that is produced.
  • Product Data Management System  -  System used to hold mechanical CAD files, including parts and assembly models as well as drawing files.
  • Product Scope  -  The features and functions that characterize a product, service, or result.
  • Production Lifecycle Management  -  Management of the products records, including bill of materials, specifications, changes and revisions from beginning to end.
  • Production Planning  - The process of devising or estimating the conversion of resources and information to achieve an end.
  • Production System  - A specific or defined set of operations within a large supply network or value chain that produces technical or physical output to satisfy an external demand.
  • Project Management  -  The application of knowledge, skills, and principles to a program to achieve the program objectives.
  • Project Management Plan  -  A document that integrates the program's plan and establishes the management controls and overall plan for intergrating and managing the program's individual components.
  • Project Manager  -  The stakeholder assigned by the performing organization to manage the work required to achieve the project objectives.


  • Quality Management System  -  A framework for product and service developement that optimizes for the continuous improvement of quality.


  • Risk  -  A future event or problem that exists outside of the control of the project that will have an adveres impact on the project if it occures.
  • Risk Analysis  -  The examination of risk areas or events to access the propbale consequences for each event, or combination of ecents.
  • Risk Avoidance  -  A risk response strategy whereby the project team acts to eliminate the threat or protect the project from its impact.
  • Risk Impact  -  The harm or consequences for a project of a risk if it occures.
  • Risk Management  -  A process to access potential problems, determine which risks are important to deal with, and impliment strategies to reduce consequences.
  • Risk Mitigation  -  A risk response strategy whereby the project team acts to decrease the probability of occurance or impact of a threat.
  • Root Cause Analysis  -  The process of discovering the root causes of problems in order to identify appropriate solutions.


  • Scope  -  Work that must be performed to deliver a product, service, or their related functions.
  • Scope Change  -  Any change to the project scope, which includes any adjustment to the cost, quality, or schedule.
  • Scope Creep  - Adding features and functions to the project scope without approval.
  • Scope Model  -  A model that defines the boundaries of a business domain or solution.
  • Specifications  -  Detailed statements of project deliverables that result from requirements and design.
  • Stakeholder  -  A person or group who has vested intrests that may be affected by the outcome of the project.  
  • Standard Operating Procedure  -  A set of clearly written instructions which outline the steps or tasks needed to complete a job.
  • Start-to-finish  -  A logical relationship in which a succesor activity cannot finish until a predecessor activity has started.
  • Start-to-start   -  A logical relationship in which a succesor activity cannot start until a predecessor activity has started.
  • Stock   - A set of complete transformations or entities.
  • Successor Activity  - A dependent activity that logically comes after another activity in the schedule.
  • Supply Chain  -  A sequence of processes involved in the manufacturing, transportation and selling of a product.



  • User  - A stakeholder, person, device, or system that directly or indirectly accesses a system.


  • Validation  -  The process of checking a product to ensure that it satisifies its intended use and confronts to its requirements.


  • Walkthrough  -  A type of peer review in which participants present, discuss, and step through a work product to find errors.
  • Work Around   -  An immediate or temporary response to an issue for which a prior response had not been planned.
  • Work Flow  -  The relationship of the activities in a project from start to finish.
  • Work in Progress  -  The set of entities that are partially transformed within any given process.
  • Work Load  -  The amount of work units assigned to a resource over a period of time.
  • Work Product  -  The document, collection of notes or diagrams used by the business analyst during the requirements developement process.






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