Using Rolling Wave Planning

Have you ever done "the wave" at a football game? You can see the wave moving towards you from across the stadium, and then you're in it, and then it surges past. Rolling wave in project management planning is iterations of planning the work and then doing the project work. Progressive elaboration, which you use to create the WBS and the WBS dictionary, is an example of rolling wave planning.

Rolling wave planning considers the big picture of what the project scope will create, but focuses on the short-term activities to move the project along. Figure 6-1 shows how a project to create a piece of software considers all of the project requirements for the deliverable, but focuses on the immediate activities necessary to complete a portion of the deliverable. Once that work is done, the project management team convenes and plans how to create the next portion of the project. The team plans, does the work, and then reconvenes for more planning.

EXAM TIP Rolling wave planning focuses on the immediate while considering the big picture of the project. Which is easier to plan and accomplish: what you must do this week or what you must do during a week a year from now?

Project Management Made Easy

Project Management Made Easy

What you need to know about… Project Management Made Easy! Project management consists of more than just a large building project and can encompass small projects as well. No matter what the size of your project, you need to have some sort of project management. How you manage your project has everything to do with its outcome.

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