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A pdf of the complete Praxis Comparative Glossary can be downloaded here.

 

From Bid to Buyer

 

Bid

A quotation or proposal, usually made in response to a request for quotation, which offers to enter into a contract for specified price under certain contractual terms and conditions.

Bid analysis

The process of breaking down and assessing a bid. This usually facilitates the comparison of alternative bids. A variety of qualitative and quantitative methods can be used that address aspects of the bid such as value for money and whole life costing.

Bidder conference

A meeting of prospective suppliers prior to the issue of a tender that ensures all suppliers have a clear, common understanding of the client’s requirements.

Blake and Mouton

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Robert Blake and Jane Mouton1 developed their managerial grid in the early 1960’s.

They described two dimensions:

  • Concern for people indicates the degree to which a leader considers team members’ needs, interests and personal development.
  • Concern for production indicates the degree to which the leader emphasises objectives, organisational efficiency and productivity.

Within these dimensions they identified five example managerial styles.

 

  1. Blake, R. Mouton J., (1964), The Managerial Grid, Gulf Publishing, Houston.

Blueprint

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A blueprint is a form of specification. It is applicable to programmes of business change where the ultimate objective is a changed organisation and working methods. The blueprint represents the sum of all outcomes resulting from the outputs of projects and the change activity performed by business-as-usual. The benefits in the business case should be capable of being realised as a result of achieving the blueprint.

Blueprint design and delivery (MSP theme)

This MSP theme deals with the creation and eventual delivery of the programme’s blueprint. It explains how the blueprint is developed and maintained throughout the transformational flow.

BOOT

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BOOT is an acronym for build, own, operate, transfer. It is an asset procurement method, typically used by governments.

Border

This term is used in MSP to describe the period towards the end of a tranche when reviews are held and authorisation is given to move to the next tranche.

This is a very different use of the word than that used in PRINCE2 and Praxis where this period is defined as a boundary.

Bottom up estimating

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Initial estimating is usually performed top down. Once the full work breakdown structure (WBS) has been developed, activities listed and resources allocated, detailed bottom up estimating can start.

This involves itemising each component of resource or cost on the lowest level activities and then aggregating these for each element in the WBS.

Boundaries process

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The delivery phase of smaller projects may not be divided into stages. The delivery phase of more complex projects and all programmes will be divided into stages or tranches respectively.

The initial impression of a boundaries process may be that it all takes place between the end of one stage or tranche and the beginning of the next stage or tranche. In reality it is rarely that clear cut. In programmes, tranches of work often overlap and even in projects where stages are sequential, the boundary activities will span the end of one stage and the beginning of the next.

The process will need to be tailored to suit but the main goals of managing boundaries will always be to:

  • conclude a stage or tranche in a structured way;
  • prepare for the next tranche or stage.

The equivalent process in PRINCE2 is Managing a Stage Boundary (SB). Neither the PMBoK® guide nor ISO21500 explicitly address boundaries between the stages of a project.

Boundary

In Praxis a boundary is the point of transition between one stage and the next. The boundaries process is also used to guide the closure of one tranche and the mobilisation of the next.

PRINCE2 takes a very similar approach and uses the Managing a Stage Boundary (SB) to guide the boundaries between stages.

MSP uses the term in a very different way. In this case the boundary extends to the full scope of a programme including the extent of its influence and authority.

Brainstorming

The unstructured and dynamic generation of ideas by a group of people where anything and everything is acceptable - well almost! Particularly useful in generating a list of possible project risks.

Branching logic

Alternative paths within a probabilistic network.

Breakdown code

A code that represents the ‘family tree’ of an element in a breakdown structure.

By applying such coding systems to work breakdown structures, organisational breakdown structures and cost breakdown structures, reports can be produced for just about any element of a project by referring to the relevant codes.

Breakdown structure

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A breakdown structure is a hierarchy of components of some aspect of a project, programme or portfolio.

Examples include: cost breakdown structure (CBS), organisational breakdown structure (OBS), product breakdown structure (PBS) and work breakdown structure (WBS).

Brief

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The project or programme brief is created by the identification process and is one of the documents submitted to the sponsor to seek approval to start the definition process.
During the definition process each section of the brief will be used as a basis for development of multiple specialist documents. The version of the brief used for authorisation will then be archived.

PRINCE2 also calls this document the project brief.

In the PMBoK® guide and ISO21500 the project charter has very similar content.

Budget

A budget is a quantitative statement of resources (usually monetary) required to achieve a particular objective. Typical within the project environment would be the overall project budget, phase budgets and stage budgets. In the programme environment there may also be tranche budgets.

Budget at completion (BAC)

An earned value management term for the total authorised budget for a project. This is equal to all allocated budgets and any as yet undistributed budgets (e.g. change budget or contingency reserve). Management reserves are not included.

Budget cost of work performed (BCWP)

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In earned value management this is the value of work done by a specified date where the value is calculated according to the actual work performed and the original budget costs. It also includes the applicable portion of apportioned effort (overheads).

Also known as earned value.

Budget cost of work scheduled (BCWS)

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In earned value management this is the value of work that should have been completed by a specified date according to the baseline schedule and budgets. This includes an applicable portion of apportioned effort (overheads).

Sometimes referred to simply as planned value.

Budgeting and cost control

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A Praxis function that includes the detailed estimation of costs, the setting of agreed budgets and control of costs against that budget. Its goals are to:

  • determine the income and expenditure profiles for the work;
  • develop budgets and align with funding;
  • implement systems to manage income and expenditure.

Also a function in the APM BoK.

In the PMBoK® guide these aspects are covered by the project cost management knowledge area and in ISO21500 by the cost subject group

PRINCE2 does not have a theme dedicated to financial matters but these are mentioned in the plans theme and progress theme.

Buffer

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A reserve of time added to a network diagram in the critical chain technique. A buffer on the critical chain is a project buffer and one applied to a non-critical chain is a feeder buffer.

Burden

Overhead expenses added to direct costs to represent the overhead costs of the host organisation that should be allocated to the project.

Burn chart

A chart that shows the number of story points on the vertical scale and time on the horizontal scale.

If the chart shows story points completed it is called a burn up chart. If it shows the story points yet to do, it is called a burn down chart.

Burn down chart

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A burn down chart is a graphical plot of work remaining against time. The simple psychology of the chart is that it focuses the mind on what is left to do rather than what has been achieved. While an appreciation of what has been done creates feelings of satisfaction, an appreciation of what is left to do creates a feeling of urgency.

See also burn up chart.

Burn up chart

A burn up chart is a graphical plot of work completed against time. It is typically used in agile to show story points completed.

See also burn down chart.

Burst event

An event in an activity on arrow network that has more than one activity emerging from it.

Business ambassador

A role in DSDM (Dynamic Systems Development Method) that is the main role with responsibility to promote understanding of the business view of a project.

Business as usual

Projects and programmes are temporary constructs that deliver a set of objectives that are implemented by the more permanent operational parts of an organisation.

The term business as usual (often reduced to BAU) is used to refer to these permanent operations to distinguish them from projects and programmes.

Business case

PRINCE2, MSP and the APM BoK all have a chapter dedicated to the management of the business case document.

In Praxis the equivalent topic is termed business case management to distinguish it from the document of the same name.

The PMBoK® guide and ISO21500 both refer to the business case but do not have sections dedicated to it.

Business case (document)

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The business case is the central document to a project or programme life cycle. The reason for defining a life cycle with phases, tranches and/or stages is to enable go/no go decisions to be made that prevent wasted investment. These decisions are primarily made based on the viability, achievability and desirability of the business case.

Business case management

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Business case management is the function concerned with developing, communicating and maintaining the business case. Its goals are to:

  • summarise context and delivery in a single document;
  • explain the desirability, achievability and viability of the proposed work;
  • develop the primary document that will be used to support a ‘go/no go’ decision at all gates in the life cycle;
  • update and maintain the business case throughout the life cycle.

The equivalent chapters in PRINCE2 and the APM BoK are simply called business case. In MSP the relevant chapter is called the business case.

Both the PMBoK® guide and ISO21500 mention the business case and include it as an input to the creation of the project charter, but they do not have dedicated sections.The SPgM similarly mentions the business case as an input to the Program Charter.

Business change authority

A term used in MSP for an individual who represents a group of business change managers.

Business change management

In many instances, for a project output to produce benefits, there needs to be business change. People and organisations are often resistant to change and the danger is that expensive project deliverables are not effectively used.

Business change management is the work involved in managing people through a period of change and embedding that change so that it becomes the normal way of working. 

Business Change Manager

The role that is responsible for the management of change and realisation of benefits.

In the SPgM this would be an Executive Sponsor of a change related program component.

Business change team

A team of change management specialists, led by a business change manager, who implement change to business-as-usual.

Buyer

A PMBoK® guide term for the person who acquires products or services in the project procurement management processes.

 

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14.Feb.2017Updated to version 1.3 including the PMI's standard for program management

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