Wideman Comparative Wideman Comparative Glossary of Common Project Management Terms v5.5 is copyright © R. Max Wideman, 2000-2012.

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Free Slack - to - Fuzzy Front End

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Definition     Editor's Choice
Free Slack
The amount of time a task can slip without delaying another task. For a task without successors, free slack is the amount of time the task can be delayed without delaying the finish date of the project. [D00737]

Supplies, goods, and transportable property. [D03506]

The rate at which something is repeated, typically at short intervals. [D02796]

Frequency Histogram
A chart showing the number of samples or probability versus the value of the variable. It allows you to analyze the risk associated with a variable. [D06422]

Frequency of Measure
How often data is to be collected and reported. [D04985]

Fringe Benefits
See Payroll Burden. [D05649]

Front End
That part of the project life cycle that is at the very beginning, or even just before.
Editor's Note: Since there is no unanimity of opinion as to when a project starts, this term is ambivalent. [D02797]

See Concept Phase or Opportunity Phase. [D03437]

Front Loading
An attempt by a performing contractor to provide adequate budgets for the near-term work, but at the expense of the far-term effort which will be under funded. It is an attempt to delay the acknowledgment of a potential cost overrun, in the hope that the contractor may "get well" through changes in the contract statement of work. Front loading is often the result of inadequate or unrealistic negotiated contract target costs.
Editor's Note: Also referred to as Front End Loading. [D04636]

Frustrated Developer Syndrome ("FDS")
A "disease" that can afflict corporate culture, particularly decision-making, efficiency, and productivity. FDS is a problem because frustrated project team members do not produce good projects. [D06423]

See Forecast to Completion

See File Transfer Protocol

Full and Open Competition
The process by which all responsible bidders are allowed to compete. [D04100]

Full Operational Capability
The attainment of specified performance in the operational environment. [D04101]

Full Time
One who works all of the standard time (on a project.) This is distinct from one who must divide their time between two or more projects. [D02798]

A set of related actions, undertaken by individuals or tools to accomplish a set purpose or end. [D05182]

The intended or official duty of a person or thing. [D04986]

  1. A process that converts inputs into outputs, or
  2. The purpose of a system or its components.

Function Point Analysis
A top down software development estimating technique which was developed by A.J. Albrecht whilst working for IBM. It entails breaking a project down into "Function Points" which are classified by degrees of complexity. Factors are then applied from which time estimates may be developed. [D03847]

Function Points
A software attribute that is described by inputs, outputs, master file inquiries, and system interfaces. Used for cost estimation, sizing maintenance, and evaluating enhancements. [D04102]

Function, project management
The series of processes by which the project objectives in that particular area of project management, e.g. scope, cost, time, etc., are achieved. [D00738]

Functional Analysis
The graphical representation of system functions in a logical diagram (called a Behavior Diagram.) [D04002]

Functional Breakdown Structure ("FBS")
A WBS organized according to the functions that the customer requires in the assets to be built. [D06424]

Functional Configuration Audit
An engineering audit of a Configuration Item (CI) or system conducted by the Buyer to verify that the performance test results of the "As-built" item are in accordance with the performance specification of the item. The FCA, with the results of the Physical Configuration Audit (PCA), is the decision point to confirm that the design is ready for either integration or replication. [D00739]

 VPM p291-4
Functional Department Manager
A functional department and project contributor level position responsible for integrating the efforts of project contributors on all projects within their individual department or discipline, primarily through the allocation of resources available within the department to the approved, active portfolio of projects [D04607]

Functional Line Manager
The person accountable for the competency and the usage of personnel resources committed to the execution of assigned portions of a project. [D03782]

Functional Management
The standard departments of a business organization that represent individual disciplines such as engineering, marketing, purchasing, accounting, and so on. [D00740]

 OTOB p271-4
Functional Manager ("FM")
The person responsible for the business and technical management of a functional group. [D00742]

A manager responsible for activities in a specialized department or function (e.g., engineering, manufacturing, marketing). [D00741]

The person you report to within your functional organization. Typically, they are the person that does your performance review. Your project manager may also be your functional manager, but they do not have to be. If your project manager is different from your functional manager, then your organization is probably using matrix management. [D04987]

Functional Matrix
An organizational structure where the project has a team leader in each functional department and the products are passed from one team to the next.
Editor's Note: Sometimes referred to as "Throwing it (the product) over the wall" to the next functional department responsible for the next adding value process. Not recommended in today's global pressure cooker! [D03848]

Functional Organization
The form of organization in which all people with a particular kind of skill (such as engineering) are grouped in a common department, reporting to a single manager for that particular functional specialty. [D00746]

 SPM p304-9
An organization structure in which staff are grouped hierarchically by specialty e.g., production, marketing, engineering, and accounting at the top level; engineering, further divided into mechanical and electrical. [D00744]

The hierarchical organization of a staff according to their specialty. [D00745]

Functional Personnel
Those who work for a functional department such as accounting or marketing and, even though contribute to the work of a project, are responsible to their functional manager for the quality of their work. [D02799]

Functional Plan, administrative
Plans for marketing, production and inventory, and similar functions that are presented in a matrix organization as they would be in a traditional organization. They are drawn up by the resource managers for their units [D02801]

Functional Plan, architectural
In architectural building work, a conceptual layout of a building showing how the total space is allocated to the various activities contemplated within the building. See also Functional Program. [D02800]

Functional Program
A written description of the Owner or user needs that must be fulfilled by a proposed facility. The description generally has a statement of the functions, production capacity and similar criteria. It is a component of the conceptual design. [D00747]

Functional Project Leader
A functional department and project contributor level position responsible for integrating the work of all contributors to their specific assigned projects within each of their respective functions. [D04608]

Functional Requirements
Contract requirement stated in terms of the objectives that must be achieved under the contract.
Editor's Note: In architectural usage, functional requirements are typically displayed as a Venn diagram showing the various activities within a building and their relationships and the relative areas required. [D03507]

Functional Requirements Document ("FRD")
A document providing a detailed functional definition of all the features listed in the Marketing Requirements Document. It is essentially the engineering interpretation of the MRD. Also known as Functional Specifications or Product Requirements Document. [D05650]

Functional Responsibility
An obligation that a Functional Line Manager has accepted from his/her immediate supervisor to manage assigned resources in a designated area, for the purposes of achieving the following objectives:

Resource Competency

Resource Usage

  • Determining and recommending the optimum size and mix of personnel needed to produce the desired results.
  • Assigning tasks and duties to personnel so as to achieve maximum benefits for the organization.

Functional Specification
A document specifying in some detail the functions that are required of a system and the constraints that will apply. [D04441]

The actions that the project deliverables are, or should be, capable of performing. [D02802]

The functions to be performed as specified in the project's product requirements (objectives). The functionality will generate revenue, or make savings, which will repay the financing. The value of the functionality is measured by the ratio of the cost of achieving the functionality to the benefit it delivers. [D02621]

Function-Quality Integration
The process of actively ensuring that quality plans and programs are integrated, mutually consistent, necessary and sufficient to permit the project team to achieve the defined product quality, [D00748]

Fundamental Objectives
Primary project objectives or goals that need to be accomplished during the course of the project. [D06425]

The status of internal fund allocation, or allocation by an external agency, if applicable, to enable payment for the performance of the project scope. The status of internal or external monies available for performing the work. [D00749]

Funding Profile
Time-phased project funding usually displayed in spreadsheet or graphical format. [D04103]

An estimate of funding requirements. [D00750]

A projection or forecast of funding requirements. [D05781]

 089 p263
The availability of money for the specific purpose of conducting the work of a project. [D05651]

Functionality, Usability, Reliability, Performance, Supportability. Standard headings or categories for assessing product quality: [D04729]

Future Value
The calculation of the value of an asset at some specified time in the future after taking into account the change in value due to interest, appreciation or depreciation over the intervening period. [D02803]

Fuzzy Front End
See Front End, especially the Editor's Note. [D02804]

Definitions for page F04: 55

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