This is essentially a single bar that spans the duration of the project from beginning to end. A timetable that is merely a single bar has very little practical applicability other than to illustrate an aspect of a project or program time line.
The most common use of this type of time table is in projects that have fixed costs such as salaries that need to be paid even if nothing else is done during that time. By including these costs in the schedule, the project can be monitored to see when they will be paid off. As these fixed costs are not affected by the completion of other activities, a single bar is used to indicate their presence throughout the project.
Level 0 milestones are commonly found on project plans and schedules. They serve to identify important events that may affect the time it takes to complete tasks within the project. For example, if a new product development process is adopted then some of the existing products could be discontinued which would require re-prioritization of remaining work.
Level 1 milestones are divided into sub-milestones that usually represent specific stages of activity within a task. For example, testing requirements may be listed under a level 1 milestone with each requirement being a separate sub-millelstone. These sub-milestones can then be used to estimate how long it will take to complete all of the required testing.
Level 1 Schedule: This is a big milestone schedule that is generally only one page long and contains main project activities, milestones, and key deliverables for the whole project. It exhibits adherence to contractual and other milestones if provided with a bid and/or contract. The level 1 schedule should be completed by the project manager or team and reviewed with the client before the start of the project.
Level 2 Schedule: This is an updated version of the level 1 schedule that may include additional detail about specific tasks within the project scope. Level 2 schedules are usually created once a project has been awarded to a contractor or vendor. The level 2 schedule is used as a reference document during project implementation to verify that all aspects of the project are being addressed.
Level 3 Schedule: This is a detailed plan of action describing how to implement all aspects of the project scope. Level 3 schedules are prepared by project managers who have broad expertise in their fields of interest and work with others on the project team to identify necessary resources. These plans can be very extensive (covering many pages) and may include project schedules for each task listed in the overall project scope. They may also include project budgets and other administrative information.
Level 4 Schedule: This is a complete description of project procedures and guidelines designed to ensure consistency throughout the project. Level 4 schedules are often required by government agencies for large projects such as construction contracts.
Level 2 Schedule Management Summary (SMS), also known as a Summary Master Schedule (SMS), is kept as a summary of the Level 3 Project Coordination Schedule (s). It represents the entire project's primary components by area and is used for higher-level management reporting. The SMS does not represent the actual schedule of activities but instead serves as a status report on the project.
A level 2 schedule is based on functional management and therefore includes all of the items required by a project except for the detailed design. Thus, it provides an overall view of a project without getting bogged down in the nitty-gritty of scheduling individual tasks. The functional managers who need to see their project's progress include marketing, sales, and manufacturing. They can use the level 2 schedule to determine how much product they will be able to produce with the resources available and whether or not there are any showstoppers that could prevent them from meeting their deadlines.
Level 2 schedules are updated each time a change is made to the level 1 schedule. For example, if new resources are added to the project team or if certain activities are moved around within the schedule, these changes will cause updates to the level 2 schedule. Just like the level 1 schedule, changes to the level 2 schedule must be approved by the senior management before they can be implemented.
Level 3 Schedules contain more detail than level 2 schedules but less detail than full projects.