The Importance of Project Schedule in Government Program Management

The government runs on programs. Studies have shown effective program management saves the government time, and money. In a fiscal environment dominated by sequestration, how do program managers stay above the fray? In this four-part series we’ll take a look at managing schedule, cost, scope, and quality. We’ll give you valuable tips and feedback to help you move critical programs forward despite the challenges.


Time is money. A project that stays on schedule usually stays within budget. The project schedule is the team road map – it builds out for contingencies, and anticipates challenges. Without it, it is easy to deliver late, over budget, and out of scope.

Project scheduling in an era of sequestration takes a whole new meaning. Budgets may change mid-contract, timelines may adjust as a result of furloughs or staffing challenges. Project plans today need to be dynamic and reflect internal and external pressures. Shifting budgets and changing priorities can be a risk to the schedule in two opposite ways. It can speed the project up or slow it down.


What tips do you have for keeping a program on-schedule? How do you balance the needs of the government with the demands of a contracting office?

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