Valid Forecast Dates

“Virtually nothing is impossible in this world if you just put your mind to it and maintain a positive attitude.”

- Lou Holtz

A positive attitude will take you far in life and career, but in this check, DCMA is again looking for the impossible: finding forecast dates that look suspicious. Specifically, they are looking for:

  • activities that haven’t begun with a forecast start before the status date.

  • activities that are incomplete with a forecast finish before the status date.

What is the status date?

The status date is a date recorded in the schedule that says, in effect: the information in this schedule is up to date as of this date. Or: this schedule was updated last on this date. No matter how many days in the future someone opens the schedule, they’ll know when the information in the schedule was last updated.

What’s the purpose of this check?

Suppose you’ve been sent a schedule, and when you open it, you see an activity that hasn’t begun yet, meaning there is no actual start date.

If that activity’s forecast start date is before the status date, two things are true:

  • the current plan has it starting in the past

  • it hasn’t started yet.

This presents a trust problem.

Me: Have you started that activity?

Scheduler: Not yet.

Me: When do you plan to start it?

Scheduler: Last Tuesday.

Houston, we have a problem.

Similarly, DCMA is looking for incomplete activities that have forecast finish dates before the status date. That conversation looks like this:

Me: Have you finished that activity?

Scheduler: Not yet.

Me: When do you plan to finish it?

Scheduler: Last Tuesday.

In either case, if a forecast date (start or finish) falls before the status date, DCMA will want to know the truth.

Next steps

This one is pretty obvious: change any flagged dates to their proper values in the future and update the status date.

14 Point Analyzer