The CD is promoted as a practical learning tool, but it will also be a valuable asset for the established practicing project manager. The templates, 79 in all (59 as Word documents and 20 as Excel) are wrapped in an Adobe Acrobat PDF environment that provides easy access links to its contents. These contents are grouped by the PMBOK®'s five management process groups. You know, the ones that look like the project life cycle: Initiating; Planning; Executing; Controlling and Closing; but are really intended to be the management process cycle.
Associated with each content entry are buttons that automatically load the relevant document in Microsoft Word or Excel, assuming that you have Microsoft Office on your machine. Some of the templates contain macros that help to automate modification of the templates, especially in Excel. Indeed, the tips provided with the Excel templates will even help users to learn how to get more out of their Microsoft software. The CD contains about 65 MB, of which 42 MB is an Installer for Acrobat Reader version 5 for those who do not have it already. Users wanting to adapt the templates for an active project may wish to transfer the remaining 23 MB to their hard drives for quicker access.
Such users may also want to customize the templates with their corporate or project specific logos for authenticity. Of course, not every one will be satisfied with the various contents - they have, after all, been based on a simplistic project as envisioned in the PMBOK® Guide. But then, the reality is that there is not a lot of agreement between the conducting of a project in the various areas of project management application, across industries, or even between companies in a single industry. For example, a recommendation in the Cost Estimating Checklist for a budget of 10% of total cost for project management will be rich for some and lean for others. It all depends on what you mean by "project management"! Still, the real value is in having a starting point for that essential report or process document that you just need in a great hurry - and in electronic form.