Baselining and Variance Analysis

If you are someone who regularly reads our blog, you will know that most of the time, our articles cover OnePager and how to use it more efficiently. However, here at OnePager we like to keep things fresh and exciting, so instead of discussing OnePager, this article will cover Baselining and Variance Analysis in your Microsoft Project file.

The best way to get into this discussion is to review what a Baseline and Variance are and what they represent in your schedule.

The Baseline in your schedule can be a kind of snapshot of your project. This snapshot has five categories from which it captures data for every task: start, finish, duration, cost, and work. With this data, you can compare actual vs. planned progress, allowing you to identify areas where the project could use extra attention.

The Variance depends on the baselines as it represents the difference between your original and current schedule. Microsoft Project calculates this by using a formula that I have placed below. Within your project are five types of Variances: start, finish, duration, cost, and work.

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