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Wideman Comparative Wideman Comparative Glossary of Common Project Management Terms v5.5 is copyright © R. Max Wideman, 2000-2017.

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Last updated 12-22-17

Master Glossary
Risk Treatment   - to -   Runaway Project
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Term
Definition     Editor's Choice
Cat Source
Risk Treatment
Selection and implementation of appropriate options for dealing with risk. [D04519]

JN

 APM
BS
Risk Trigger
A threshold value set for a particular risk that, when reached, sets off an alarm that causes management to react with a planned response. [D05484]

FGJN
CHMT

 066
Triggers, sometimes called risk symptoms or warning signs, are indications that a risk has occurred or is about to occur. Triggers may be discovered in the risk identification process and watched in the risk monitoring and control process. [D05589]

JN

 PMK00
Risk Value
The number obtained when numeric impact and likelihood values are multiplied. [D01750]

JN

 WST
Risk, Aggregated
The overall level of risk to the program when all the risks are viewed as a totality rather than individually. This could include the outputs of particular scenarios or risk combinations. [D06237]

JN

 MoR-UK
Risk, close-down report
A report prepared by the risk process manager after the project has terminated. See Risk, Internal [D05085]

JN

 RAMP
Risk, endogenous
Risk to the project that can be traced to actions from within the project. [D06518]

JN

 Costin
Risk, exogenous
Risk to the project that originates from events and emerging conditions outside of the project, but that nevertheless impacts the project. [D06519]

JN

 Costin
Risk, Inherent
The exposure arising from a specific risk before any action has been taken to manage it. [D06238]

JN

 MoR-UK
Risk, Internal
A risk under the control of the project team. [D06016]

JN
CHMT

 PMTWG
Risk, Operational
Failure to achieve business/organizational objectives due to human error, system failures and inadequate procedure and controls. [D06239]

JN

 MoR-UK
Risk, Portfolio
Any risk to the objectives of the portfolio as a whole or to multiple elements of the portfolio, including the risk of events being compounded. [D06341]

FGJN
CHMT

 RMW
Any project portfolio risk that is typically endemic in the organization and is therefore likely to affect all projects in the portfolio whatever their type or size. [D06240]

FGJN

 MoR-UK
Risk, post award
The risk of cost increases after contract award of a work package. [D06520]

JN

 Costin
Risk, Process Plan
A plan prepared at the outset by the risk process manager, which establishes the risk strategy and baseline. The plan is updated as the work proceeds. [D05086]

JN

 RAMP
Risk, Program
Program risks are those that not only encompass the risks of individual projects but specifically identify those risks that may be repeated in subsequent projects in the program and hence may be mitigated by an early single uniform action. Program risks may also have a snowball effect on subsequent projects in the program and their associated systems. The latter class becomes progressively more work intensive to resolve. [D06241]

FGJ
CHMT

 RMW
Risk, Project
The cumulative effect of the chances of uncertain occurrences that will adversely affect project objectives. It is the degree of exposure to negative events and their probable consequences. Project risk is characterized by three risk factors namely: risk event, risk probability and the amount at stake. In an uncertain environment, risk is the opposite of opportunity. [D01719]

GJN
CHMT

 RMH
The probability of an undesirable outcome. [D01716]

FGJ
CHMT

 WST
The possibility that something can go wrong and interfere with the completion of the work. [D03729]

J

 PPS&C p341
Combination of the probability or frequency of occurrence of a defined threat or opportunity and the magnitude of the consequences of the occurrence.
Editor's Note: Alternatively, combination of the likelihood of occurrence of a specified event and its consequences. Also used to imply potential occurrences or threats that would jeopardize the success of a project, or the probability of an undesirable outcome. [D04504]

GJ

 APM
BS
An ongoing or upcoming concern that has a significant probability of adversely affecting the success of major milestones. [D04768]

J
CHMT

 RUP
A measure of the potential inability to achieve overall program objectives within defined cost, schedule, and technical constraints.
Risk has two components:
  1. The probability of failing to achieve a particular outcome and
  2. The consequences of failing to meet that outcome.
[D05093]

GJ

 051
The likelihood of variation in the occurrence of an event, which may have either positive or negative consequences.
Editor's Note: In our view, this definition is more suited to the term "Uncertainty" which encompasses both positive and negative events. [D05094]

GJ

 RAMP
There may be external circumstances or events that must not occur for the project to be successful. If you believe such an event is likely to happen, then it would be a risk. (Contrast this with the definition of "assumption"). Identifying something as a risk increases its visibility, and allows a proactive risk management plan to be put into place.
If an event is within the control of the project team, such as having testing complete by a certain date, then it is not a risk. If an event has a 100% chance of occurring, then it is not a risk, since there is no "likelihood" or risk involved. (It is just a fact).
Examples of risks might be that "reorganization in the customer organization may result in key people being reassigned ..." or "The new hardware may not be able to handle the expected sales volume ...". [D05095]

GJ
CHMT

 TM
The possibility of suffering loss, injury, disadvantage, or destruction. [D05208]

GJ

 SA-CMM
Uncertainty of outcome, whether positive opportunity or negative threat. Some amount of risk taking is inevitable if a project is to achieve its objectives. [D05477]

GJ

 PRNC2 2002
Project risks are those concerned with the successful completion of the project. Typically these risks include personal, technical, cost, schedule, resource, operational support, quality and supplier issues. [D06242]

GJ
C

 MoR-UK
Risk, Projects
The likelihood of an event occurring that is detrimental to project success. Identification of all project risk categories and assessing their probability and impact is an important aspect of project management. Therefore, sufficient time and resources should be devoted to risk assessment as an integral part of the project plan. Managing and controlling risk involves assigning responsibility to those in the project team who can best control the consequence of each risk category. The objective is to mitigate risk/cost on the project. Unpredictable project risks should be assumed by the owner since they cannot be costed. [D03089]

GJ
CHMT

 CCCP
Risk, Proximity
The time factor of risk, i.e. the occurrence of risks will be due at particular times, and the severity of their impact will vary depending on when they occur. [D06243]

GJ
CHMT

 MoR-UK
Risk, Quality
Failure to complete tasks to the required level of technical or quality performance. [D06190]

GJN
CHMT

 PMTWG
Risk, Strategic
Any risk event which has serious or catastrophic consequences even though the probability of occurrence may be quite low.
Editor's Note: Sometimes referred to as a "Show stopper". [D05127]

FGJN
CHMT

 RAMP
Risk concerned with where the organization wants to go, how it plans to get there, and how it can ensure survival. [D06244]

JN

 MoR-UK
The system of future opportunities and (their) threats that are so significant that they could materially impact the enterprise's achievement of its main purpose or even its survival. [D06245]

JN

 122
Risks
Risks are events that if they occur can jeopardize the successful completion of the project. Risks should be identified and assessed for probability of occurrence and impact on the project. [D01751]

JN

 WST
RMB
See Risk Management Budget

N

  
RMP
See Risk Management Plan

VFGJN
CHMT

  
Roadmap
A guide based on high-level activities that identifies key choices that are available. [D05485]

GJN
CHMT

 MSA
Robustness
The ability of the product to perform in unexpected situations, i.e. to operate well beyond its set of design assumptions. [D05486]

CHMT

 064
ROI
See Return on Investment

FGJN
CHMT

  
Role
A unit of defined responsibilities that may be assumed by one or more individuals. [D05209]

JN
CHMT

 SA-CMM
A function or part performed especially in a particular part or process. [D02995]

N

 Webster
A definition of the behavior and responsibilities of an individual, or a set of individuals working together as a team, within the context of a software engineering organization. The worker represents a role played by individuals on a project, and defines how they carry out work. [D04789]

JN
T

 RUP
See Workers. [D04793]

J

 RUP
Roles
Many aspects of project work are done as a part-time responsibility. All methodologies recognize that the project manager and all other job titles are role definitions where the role is often fulfilled by a person who has other roles to fill simultaneously. [D03942]

JN

 PNG
Roll Up
On a spreadsheet or cost report, the summation of a column of figures to the next higher level subtotal or total. [D01614]

JN

 RMW
On Gantt Charts, to display symbols on a summary task bar that represents dates from subtasks. [D01752]

N

 MSP98
Rolling Wave
A term used in scheduling to imply detailed planning or scheduling over a short horizon. Towards the end of each period, the plan is moved forward by a correspondingly similar amount. See also Short Term Plan. [D02996]

N

 RMW
Rolling Wave Budgeting
A budgeting approach in which a full-period projection is made using an unsupported, top-down budget at the beginning of a project. As time progresses, the top-down budget is replace with a more detailed, bottom-up budget that extends 3 to 6 months into the near-term future. A top-down budget is then used again at the end of the project. [D06246]

JN

 PMTWG
Rolling Wave Concept
The progressive refinement of detailed work planning by continuous subdivision of far-term activities into near-term work package tasks. [D04655]

JN
CH

 QWF
Rolling Wave Planning
Cost and schedule planning where details are developed for the near term and general allocations are made for the out periods. Detail is developed for the out periods as information becomes available to do so. [D04227]

JN
CHMT

 CSM
Cost and schedule planning where details are developed as far out as detailed information is available to establish a detailed short term baseline plan. [D05487]

JN

 RMW
Progressive detailing of the project plan as necessary to control each subsequent project stage or phase. [D06247]

GJN

 PMTWG
Rollout
Widespread, phased introduction into the organization of a project's product or service. [D06248]

JN
CHMT

 PMTWG
ROM
See Rough Order of Magnitude Estimate

GJ
CH

  
Root Cause
An event in a chain of events that leads to an outcome or effect of interest or concern. The term is used to describe the depth in the chain at which an intervention could be implemented to change the performance of the chain and hence reduce or remove the effect of interest or concern. [D06522]

JN

 RMW
Root Cause Analysis ("RCA")
A structured process designed to understand the causes of past events for the purpose of preventing recurrence. [D06523]

GJN

 127
An examination to determine what is really causing a situation, issue or problem with a view to removing the conditions so that the situation, issue or problem does not reoccur. [D05724]

JN

 RMW
Rough Order of Magnitude Estimate ("ROM")
Estimated cost based on approximate cost models or expert analysis. It is usually based on top level requirements or specifications, and an overall prediction of work to be done to satisfy the requirements. The ROM is usually used for financial planning purposes only. [D04228]

GJ
CH

 CSM
Round-trip Engineering
An engineering principle that a product should be built as designed and designed as built. In other words, a product and its design documentation should be entirely consistent. [D05488]

JN
T

 064
Royalties
Any costs or charges in the nature of royalties, license fees, patent or license amortization costs, or the like, for the use of or for rights in patents and patent applications in connection with performing a contract or any subcontract. [D03565]

J
CH

 GAT
RPWM
See Ranked Positional Weight Method

N

  
Rubber Baselining
An attempt by a contractor to take far-term budget and move it into the current period, in an attempt to disguise cost problems. Approach will be to move budget, but without a corresponding value of work, to mask cost difficulties. It is an indicator of a likely cost overrun condition. [D01753]

N
CH

 WST
Rule of Pi
Bias that affects estimates. The actual duration (cost) of an activity will likely be Pi (3.1415...) bigger than the original estimate, even if the estimator was aware of the rule. [D06524]

JN

 PrjDec
Rule of Thumb
Some pragmatic ratio used in cost estimating to arrive at some estimate of cost such as contingency, overhead or other level of effort activity, etc. [D03564]

N

 RMW
Rules
Certain ways in which things must be accomplished; guidelines within which people and organizations must work. [D02997]

N

 PMDT
Rules of Evidence
Those rules governing the furnishing of proof. For example, evidence legally submitted to a tribunal to ascertain the truth of the matter. [D03250]

JN

 RMW
Rules pertaining to judicial evidence. [D02998]

N

 SU
Determination of what evidence is permissible in a court proceeding. [D03249]

N

 PMDT
Run Time
The period of time during which a computer program executes. Contrast: modeling time. [D04877]

N
T

 RUP
Runaway Project
A term coined by the consultancy KPMG to identify mainly IT projects which resist termination. Typified by a constantly changing specification and absorption of much extra resource and cost in a desperate effort to get the project finished. [D03943]

N
T

 PNG
Definitions for page R08: 70

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