Entry and Exit Criteria

When setting milestones, you'll want to describe entry and exit criteria, which indicate how you know when you've left one phase of a project plan and entered another. For example, suppose that a phase of your project plan calls for the deployment of seven separate enterprise-class servers that are going to talk to each other in an e-mail server routing group scenario. The exit criterion (and milestone) that signals the end of this phase is when tests of the interconnectivity between the servers as routers are satisfactory. The very next phase might detail the creation of e-mail boxes for all users in every segment of the enterprise. Entry criteria for the new phase would start with a step that details how team members go about setting up the mailboxes.

Projects as a whole can also have entry and exit criteria. In a very formal project, you might have exit criteria that stipulate when you have left the initiating phase (sign-off of charter) and entered the planning phase.

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