This article contains most of the important information you need to know about Sequence Activities process in order to answer questions related to this topic in the PMP Exam, I recommend you review this type of articles 1 week before your exam date, all information mentioned are based on PMBOK Guide 6th edition and PMP Exam Prep 9th edition for Rita Maclhy’s, ITTO refers to Inputs, Tools & Techniques and outputs.
This process is a part of Planning Process group and Time Management Knowledge Area with the following ITTO’s
- Project Management Plan ( Schedule Management plan and Scope Baseline )
- Project Documents (Activity Attributes , Activity list ,Assumption log , milestones list )
- Organization process assets
- Enterprise environmental factors
Tools & Techniques:
- Precedence diagraming method
- Dependency Information
- Leads and Lags
- Project Management Information System
- Schedule network Diagram
- Project Document Updates ( Activity Attributes , Activity lists , Assumption log and milestones lists )
- Each activity except the first and last should be connected to at least one predecessor and one successor activity with an appropriate logical relationship.
- This process involves taking the activities and milestones and sequencing them in the order in which the work will be performed resulting in the project network diagram.
- A network Diagram shows just dependencies, if duration estimates of the activities are added it can also show the critical path.
- There is 3 methods to draw the network diagram ;
- Precedence diagraming method (PDM): here nodes or boxes represent activities while arrows show dependencies.
- Arrow diagraming method (ADM): activities are represented as arrows; dashed arrows represent dummy activities that show dependencies.
- Graphical evaluation and review technique (GERT): allows for conditional branching and loops , it is a computer simulation technique.
- Logical relationships :
- Finish-to-Start , Activity must finish before the successor can start.
- Start-to-Start , Activity must start before the successor can start.
- Finish-to-finish , Activity must finish before the successor can finish.
- Start-to-finish , Activity must start before the successor can finish.
- Types of Dependencies :
- Mandatory Dependency (Hard Logic), inherent in the nature of the project or required by the contract, identified by project team.
- Discretionary Dependency ( Soft Logic ) , the way an organization has chosen to do the work , it is identified by project team and it is very important in project schedule compression.
- External Dependency, based on the needs or desire of party outside the project , identified by project manager.
- Internal Dependency, based on the needs of the project , identified by the project manager.
- Lead: it may be used to indicate that an activity can start before it is predecessor activity is completed.
- Lag : it is the waiting time inserted between activities.
- Padding: Extra time added to a schedule that you don’t really need, project manager just add to feel confident in the estimate , it is a sign of poor project management.