Project Management Fact Sheet

PMP FACT SHEET

Think of the PMP Exam as a list of facts. How many of these facts do you know?

Did you know…

  1. A project manager (PM) that is validating scope is involved in the monitoring and controlling process group. Scope validation involves formal acceptance of the work deliverables
  2. Validate scope is a monitoring and controlling process which can be performed throughout the project. At the end of each phase of the project, you would perform validate scope to achieve the formal acceptance of the completed project deliverables.
  3. The project manager is in control of the project throughout the project life cycle
  4. The high-level constraints of schedule and budget are determined during the Initiating Process Group. The detailed planning is done during the Planning Process Group.
  5. Stakeholder influences are greatest toward the beginning of the project.
  6. Execution is where project teams deliver the work specified in the Initiation phase and planned in the Planning phase. Execution is when the project resources are onboarded and the majority of the project costs are incurred.
  7. Project charters are issued by Senior Management. The project is authorized when the charter is approved by the Sponsor.  PM typically participates in the development of the project charter. 
  8. Whenever there is a change request, you should look at the impact on all of the project constraints, not just the schedule.
  9. The WBS dictionary provides detailed descriptions about the deliverables listed in the WBS. Once testing has been done by the project team, the project deliverables are 'verified' and ready for the Scope Validation process, where they will be inspected, validated, and accepted if the users feel they meet requirements and specifications.
  10. Overlapping of activities implies taking activities that would otherwise be executed sequentially and executing them by introducing parallelism. This is referred to as fast tracking.
  11. A Cost Performance Index (CPI) of 0.73 means the project is only getting $0.73 for every $1 spent.
  12. SPI = EV/PV. A Schedule Performance Index (SPI) of 0.67 means you are progressing at only 67% of the rate originally planned
  13. The Critical Path in a project has zero slack, and any delays on tasks on the critical path will delay the end date of the project.
  14. Float for an activity = LS-ES or LF-EF. 
  15. One standard deviation of the mean covers 68% data, or 34% on either side of the mean.
  16. Approved change requests are an output of Perform Integrated Change Control and input to the Control Quality process
  17. Expert is the power that comes with expert knowledge in a specific knowledge area.
  18. Decision tree analysis is a quantitative risk analysis technique that involves a diagram describing different decisions under consideration and the impact on the project of choosing one over the other.
  19. A comprehensive risk analysis can be done only after the entire scope has been defined in the Work Breakdown Structure (WBS).
  20. In a cost plus fixed fee project, the seller can exercise control over the cost rather than getting locked into a rate or a price. 
  21. Project cost peaks in the middle of the project as maximum resources are utilized during this phase. Project cost is low at the beginning, peaks midway, and drops rapidly as the project draws to an end. 
  22. Analogous Estimate (also called Top down approach) is a form of Expert Judgment. It uses estimations from previous similar activities to estimate future durations. The accuracy of estimates derived using this method depends on the correctness of historical information, similarity of the historical projects (could be a prototype project), and expert judgment.
  23. Cost estimates are reviewed in a project as more information becomes available. For example, a project in the startup phase has a rough order of magnitude of (-25% to +75%), as we move into the project, definitive estimates are in the range of -5% to +10%
  24. A matrix organization is where team members have dual reporting structure, and the teams work in their respective functional areas while performing project work. 
  25. PERT allows the estimator to include three estimates: optimistic, pessimistic, and most likely. The expected duration is calculated using the equation: Expected Duration = [P + 4(ML) + O]/6
  26. Resource Breakdown Structure (RBS) is focused on creating a hierarchical list of the resources, both significant and seemingly redundant, that are involved in the project.
  27. An authorized time-phased budget, which includes the Budget at Completion (BAC), is used to measure cost performance, and is displayed in the form of an S-curve is known as Cost Baseline
  28. Network diagram graphically represents the project schedule
  29. EMV = Probability * Impact. If the impact is positive, it is an opportunity, and if the impact is negative, it is a threat. 
  30. Time and material contracts are most suitable for staff augmentation, acquisition of experts, etc. and are useful when the extent of the work cannot be completely determined upfront.
  31. Work authorization system is a subsystem of the overall project management system. It is a collection of formal documented procedures that define how project work will be authorized to ensure that the work is done by the identified organization, at the right time, and in the proper sequence. It includes the steps, documents, tracking system, and defined approval levels needed to issue work authorizations.
  32. The most widely accepted common reasons for conflict in a team are Schedules, Priorities, Resources, Technical beliefs, Administrative policies and procedures, and project costs and Personalities (they are in order of most common to least common).
  33. Smoothing emphasizes the common interests of the conflicting parties and de-emphasizes their differences. 
  34. Team development is most difficult in a weak matrix organization because the power to manage resources lies with the functional manager, and the Project Manager has limited authority. 
  35. The motivation-hygiene theory was developed by Frederick Herzberg, a psychologist who found that job satisfaction and job dissatisfaction acted independently of each other. This two-factor theory states that there are certain factors in the workplace that cause job satisfaction, while a separate set of factors cause dissatisfaction. The two-factor theory distinguishes between Motivators (e.g., challenging work, recognition, responsibility) that give positive satisfaction and arise from intrinsic conditions of the job itself, such as recognition, achievement, or personal growthand Hygiene factors (e.g. status, job security, salary, and fringe benefits) that do not give positive satisfaction, although dissatisfaction results from their absence. These are extrinsic to the work itself and include aspects such as company policies, supervisory practices, or wages/salary. Essentially, hygiene factors are needed to ensure that an employee is satisfied. Motivation factors are needed to motivate an employee to higher performance. If Project Manager has only changed the hygiene factors without any change in the motivation factors, the employee remains unhappy and dissatisfied.

Why Projects Fail & The Role of Project Managers

Completing a project is never easy. Even a project you are working on by yourself can prove difficult to complete. How many times have you started a project and given up halfway through? Well, imagine how difficult it is for businesses with so many different people and departments working on projects—the high failure rates are hardly surprising. This infographic from Trainwest takes you through why projects fail and what project managers can do to keep project teams motivated.

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