A glossary of project terms with specific reference to their use in project management methodology.

 Term Definition
Assumption  A statement that is accepted as true for the purposes of planning a project, but which may change later. An assumption may be made if facts are not yet known or decided and, when they are, they may result in the project needing to be re-planned. 
Baseline (data)
Reference levels against which eg, a project, process or system is monitored and controlled.
The measurable improvement resulting from an outcome that is perceived as an advantage by one or more stakeholders.
Benefit owner
The benefit owner is the person responsible for that benefit. They should be aware of all the details relating to each benefit for which they are responsible and should know who to chase and influence. This should not be the Project Manager. Benefits realisation Consider the benefits set out at the beginning of the project in relation to what has been achieved. Ensure that each of the benefits has been delivered and can be evidenced. This may not occur until sometime after the close of the project.
Planning tool used to define the terms of reference for new projects or reviews. BOSCARD stands for: background, objectives, scope, constraints, assumptions, risks, deliverables.
Business Analyst
Someone who undertakes analysis to understand, capture and document business requirements and needs, including options appraisal, and ensuring synergy among existing systems.
Business case/project proposal
Once the mandate has been approved the Business case provides justification for undertaking a project. It evaluates benefits, timescales, costs and risks, against which continuing viability is tested.
Estimation of costs for both the start-up and the lifecycle costs of the project.
Capital projects
Typically building projects, funded by University Capital resources and included in the University’s Capital Investment Programme.
(Project) champion
Responsible for defining the projects strategic objectives and securing University wide buy in.
Change control A process used to ensure that changes within a project are managed in a controlled and coordinated manner.
Closure report
Completed by the Project Manager and approved by the Sponsor the closure report will assess the success of the project and identify lessons learnt. It will also set out how the outcomes of the project can be embedded into on-going University business.
Cost breakdown structure (CBS)
Costs are allocated to the lowest level of the work breakdown structure. The tasks at this level can often be subdivide into activities to be completed by different departments therefore one task may have several cost elements.
Critical path
Sequence of activities that must be completed on time for the entire project to be completed on schedule. Deliverables (or products) Object that is produced as a result of the project.
Customer The person or group who will use the final deliverable(s) of a project. 
A dependency controls the start or finish of a task/project relative to the start or finish of another task/project.
A benefit perceived as negative or disadvantageous.
Gantt chart
A pictorial representation of a project plan, in which a bar represents the period over which a task is to be carried out.
An issue is a risk with near 100% probability, or one that has already happened. If left unresolved an issue would negatively impact on the successful delivery of the project.
Issue register
A register used to capture and maintain information on all the issues being managed by the Project Manager. This should be monitored on a regular basis.
A continuous improvement approach to improving areas of work and processes and reducing or eliminating wastes.
Lessons learnt log
An informal repository for lessons, things within a project or review that have either gone well or not worked as planned, that future projects or reviews can learn.
The period from the start-up of a project to the acceptance of the project product.
Sets out the reason why a project is being proposed and briefly describes the benefits to the University. Gives an initial indication of required resources and demonstrates that the proposed project has the potential to contribute to the Universities strategic aims and/or the effectiveness of University business.
Significant scheduled events that act as progress markers in the life of a project. They usually represent the completion of a key task or activity.
Must, Should, Could, Would (MoSCoW)
Prioritisation method used to decide with project requirements must be implemented first and which come later or may not be implemented at all.
A short statement describing the positive change the project aims to make. Objectives may be defined in terms of outputs, outcomes and/or benefits.
Overall status
This captures the health of the project by considering whether the time, budget and resources are all meeting the predicted expectations.
An informal project idea that has not yet progressed to mandate stage, these can be discussed with the Strategic Projects Office (SPO).
Post-implementation review
Conducted after the closure of a project in order to confirm any outstanding actions have been completed, gather lessons learnt and ensure that benefits realisation has taken place.
Product Breakdown Structure (PBS)
This defines of all of the project’s expected outcomes and helps develop the project plan.
Progress report
This is a set template that will convey what objectives have been achieved, what resources have been used and whether the project is progressing as expected.
A unique set of co-ordinated activities, with definite starting and finishing points, undertaken by an individual or team to meet specific objectives within defined time, cost and performance parameters.
Project Manager
The Project Manager is accountable to the project sponsor for matters related to the assigned project. They have single-point accountability for defining and creating a project solution which will ensure realisation of the required benefits set out in the business case.
Project plan
A high-level plan showing the major products of the project, when they will be delivered and at what cost. An initial project plan is presented as part of the project mandate. This is revised as information on actual progress appears and is used to measure actual progress against expectations.
The required level to which the final deliverable(s) of a project conform to the customers’ requirements.
Quality criteria
The standards or requirements set by the user against which the quality of the deliverables will be measured. Also called quality requirements. 
RAG status
(Red, Amber, Green) RAG status reporting is a method of indicating how well a project is doing using a traffic light system. Typically the RAG status is used to measure specifics such as performance against the budget, timescales and quality.
Responsibility matrix
A diagram or chart showing assigned responsibilities for elements of work. It is best developed following completion of the work and product breakdown structures. 
Identify what is required to carry out the project objectives such as staff time, additional staff, equipment, facilities and funding.
Revenue projects
Typically system and process projects, funded by annual revenue budget and managed through the Project Management Framework (PMF).
A risk is a problem or uncertainty which may have an impact on future project progress. A risk may not always have an adverse impact; it can be a positive opportunity too. Potential risks should be identified, managed and monitored throughout the project.
Risk assessment
An analysis of identified risks to gain an understanding of their individual significance and their combined impact on objectives.
Risk owner
Person responsible for monitoring a specific identified risk.
Risk register
A record of identified risks, including their owner, status, potential mitigation and history. 
Overall definition of what the project should achieve and a specific description of what the result should be.
The project advocate responsible for directing and ensure that benefits are achieved and that the project is viable at all times. They are the owner of the business case and primary risk taker. They are responsible for engaging the wider University and making key decisions/providing guidance to the project.
A stage is a section of the project that the Project Manager is managing on behalf of the project board at any time. It is a collection of activities and products whose delivery is managed as a unit.
Stakeholder A person who has interest in the project and who can affect or be affected by the outputs.
The person, group or groups responsible for the supply of the product’s specialist products. 
Tasks The components and activities that make up the basic building blocks of a project.
Makes up part of the progress report and will assess the time needed to complete each objective or stage. This will be used along with budget and resources to assess the overall status of the project.
Tolerance level
The permissible deviation above and below a plan’s estimate of time, cost, quality and scope without escalating the deviation to the next level of management.
Makes up part of the progress report and will assess whether the project is exceeding, missing or consistently meeting the objectives set out in the project plan.
Work breakdown structure (WBS) 
Breaking down deliverables into manageable work packages that can be schedules, costed and have resources assigned to them.
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