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Topics: Benefits Realization, Earned Value Management, Scheduling
What is Earned Schedule Management and How project can benefit if adopted?
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Atul Gaur Pune, Maharashtra, India
What exactly is earned schedule and how a project can benefit form this technique? Moreover, PMBOK does not mention about this technique, is there any specific reason for this?
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Sante Delle-Vergini Senior Project Manager| Infosys Melbourne, Victoria, Australia
It probably tells you something if it is not in the current PMBOK, like maybe it's not widely used. Perhaps it will be in the 6th edition, and then we can take more notice of it.
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1 reply by Atul Gaur
Jul 03, 2017 9:34 AM
Atul Gaur
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Thanks Sante
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Atul Gaur Pune, Maharashtra, India
Jul 03, 2017 6:54 AM
Replying to Sante Delle-Vergini
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It probably tells you something if it is not in the current PMBOK, like maybe it's not widely used. Perhaps it will be in the 6th edition, and then we can take more notice of it.
Thanks Sante
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Eduard Hernandez
Community Champion
Senior Project Manager| Prothya Biosolutions Amsterdam, Netherlands
Had no idea about this - I thought you might have been confusing it with Earned Value Management. But then I looked into Google and Wikipedia return this nice entry:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Earned_schedule

Indeed, I always found confusing that SPI is 1 at the end of a project, even if it has experienced major delays. One may argue that towards the end of the project, the SPI becomes less relevant, but yet, I found this new approach interesting. Thanks for bringing it up.
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1 reply by Vincent Guerard
Jul 03, 2017 9:58 PM
Vincent Guerard
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SPI is 1 at the end, simply because you have completed 100% of the work that was plan to be finish by the end of project.
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Sergio Luis Conte Helping to create solutions for everyone| Worldwide based Organizations Buenos Aires, Argentina
I use it and you can find it inside the PMIĀ“s EVM Standard. I use it before it appears into the standard because EVM is based on cost and SVM is based on work progress so it is better for those cases where you have no cost information to calculate the EVM variables (in my case, after more than 30 years in the field, I could say that was in my personal work life 90% of times). In fact, I have teached it lot of times including in Universites courses. So, you can take advantage of it. You can find lot of good information into the internet mainly because USA DoD and NASA have used it.
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Vincent Guerard Coach - Trainer - Speaker - Advisor| Freelance Mont-Royal, Quebec, Canada
Jul 03, 2017 10:28 AM
Replying to Eduard Hernandez
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Had no idea about this - I thought you might have been confusing it with Earned Value Management. But then I looked into Google and Wikipedia return this nice entry:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Earned_schedule

Indeed, I always found confusing that SPI is 1 at the end of a project, even if it has experienced major delays. One may argue that towards the end of the project, the SPI becomes less relevant, but yet, I found this new approach interesting. Thanks for bringing it up.
SPI is 1 at the end, simply because you have completed 100% of the work that was plan to be finish by the end of project.
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Dave Middleton Ia, USA
To add to the discussion.ESM was developed as an extension of EVM. You can find more info about ESM at: http://www.earnedschedule.com.

SPI=EV/PV so at completion SPI=1 even if the project was delayed, which is very counter-intuitive. As a PM you need a fair KPI that relfects the status of your time-based schedule performance. So in case of a delayed completion, you need an schedule performance indicator that faithfully reflects that. The EVM SPI does not do that.

So schedule performance index is a bit of a misnomer in my opinion. It suggests a schedule (time) indicator whereas it is related to planned work instead. Therefore, I call it Scheduled work (cost) performance index.

There are academic sources that suggest that the SPI is a decent schedule (time) indicator at about 20% completion. Beyond 20% completion, the SPI can vary wildly before it returns back to 1.

I used ESM in my project and adopted the SPIt indicator. What I need is a faithful report of the project's actual time-based schedule performance compared to my planned schedule. Moreover, I want the schedule performance indicator to help me make timely decisions to keep the project on track. EVM's SPI can only help that much.
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Sachin Aggarwal Manager - Regional Sales| BlackBerry Tokyo, Japan
Hello Atul

Earned Schedule is an extension of Earned Value Management. It is introduced in PMPOK Guide, 6th edition.

The traditional EVM approach is based on cost. All parameters, PV, AC and EV are all derived from cost. Due to this, traditional EVM approach has several limitations.

1. Schedule Variance is in terms of dollars - difficult to interpret
2. When a project is completed, SV is always 0 and SPI is always 1. This is independent of actual schedule performance of the project.
3. There is no means to forecast schedule in traditional approach.

To fix these limitation Earned Schedule is introduced.
Time, not cost, is the focus of Earned Schedule.

If you wish to understand the basic have a look at the following.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=s-3fHiZwY1Q

#SunnySensei
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Iraj Rahimi Monjezi PM III| National Iranian South Oilfields Co Ahvaz, Khuzestan, Iran (Islamic Republic of)
A review on “Earned Schedule, An Emerging Earned Value Technique” By Alex Davis, Mick Higgins, and APM EVM SIG Working Group.
URL: https://www.apm.org.uk/media/1233/earned-schedule.pdf
Citation: Association for Project Management. “APM Guidelines, Earned Schedule, an Emerging Earned Value Technique”, January 2010.
Keywords: Earned Value, Earned Schedule, Schedule Adherence.

1. This publication elaborates on “earned schedule” as an extension or additional calculation for use with “earned value.”
2. The most important development in ES is the ability to determine more accurately the completion date of projects that are behind schedule.
3. The basic principle of the earned schedule is to “identify the time at which the amount of earned value accrued should have been earned.”
4. A benefit of ES is claimed to be that it integrates and supports risks of management activities especially when justifying the need for “schedule reserve” other than cost reserves.
I have not heard of or seen any discussion of “schedule reserve” before this.
5. An interesting statement of warning in the publication is to make sure that “the input data is coming from a stable baseline and that the project is not mortgaging work (moving work into the future.”
6. The article introduces the benefits of ES, then presents details of how to formulate and calculate it as the basic parameter of the method.
7. An example is provided and is solved stepwise in every time increment to clarify the earned schedule approach. It is claimed to be based on real data.
8. A spreadsheet is developed and is used throughout the process of solving the example.
9. The solved example clearly demonstrates that SV when measured in units of cost—as in the standard EVA—loses its capacity to indicate the project status in terms of schedule. As the project gets closer to its end, SV[cost] tends toward zero, hence revealing no leading information to the project manager.
10. on the contrary SV[time] as introduced in the ES method maintains its capacity to be revealing toward the end of the project.
11. The article warns the reader to validate the ES calculation results. It suggests at least four reporting time increments before relying on the data.
12. An interesting part of the article is the introduction of the concept of “schedule adherence.” This is intended to know whether the project activities are being done in the right order according to the plan.
It is possible that the reported EV or the total progress of the project is apparently matching that of the plan, which essentially means that the project team is working well enough. However this report may not be revealing the whole truth. Chances are that tasks are being started ahead of their planned schedule for sake of gaining early progress while the predecessor activities are yet to finish, which means the project team is not focusing its effort where it is most needed.
Therefore to find out if the activities are being completed in the right order, it seems necessary when reviewing a claimed percent complete or a claimed EV, to screen out any progress that may have been gained from those activities that have yet-to complete predecessor activities with start-to-finish relationship.
13. In order to quantify the “schedule adherence,” a parameter is introduced called the p-factor, which basically integrates the concepts of SPI and ES. While in the standard procedure for calculation of SPI, every component of EV and PV up to the status date are accounted for, the p-factor includes only the EV and PV components that happen before the ES.

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