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Matrix Management Wiki

4H. Contingency Time

  • 4H1. Contingency time is unallocated time that is used to protect unknowns.
  • 4H2. Contingency time is critical to the optimization of an organization.
  • 4H3. Contingency is a way to protect a schedule from unknowns.
  • 4H4. Contingency is used in a team’s schedule to ensure the final output is delivered on time or to ensure a scarce resource is available.
  • 4H5. Individual vs. team contingency:
    • 4H5i. Adding contingency to each individual’s schedule can result in excess time being added to the team overall. Adding a pool of contingency at the team level to protect a date from unknown problems optimizes the team and ensures that the deliverable can be completed on time.
  • 4H6. Optimizing a process:
    • 4H6i. Use contingency to protect a critical path.
      • 4H6ia. The critical path is the path through a process for which there is no slack or waiting time; therefore, it determines the time the process will take to complete.
      • 4H6ib. For processes where the critical path needs to be as short as possible, add extra resources to the process so that there is no idle time.
    • 4H6ii. Use contingency to protect a resource that is only available at a particular time.
  • 4H7. Contingency is used to avoid bottlenecks.
    • 4H7i. If there are no resource constraints, there is no need for bottleneck contingency.
    • 4H7ii. Contingency is about managing the potential bottlenecks in a process so that they are minimized.
  • 4H8. There should also be contingency for unknowns.
    • 4H8i. Contingency is also used to plan for unknown unknowns—risks that can’t be anticipated.
  • 4H9. Contingency allows individuals to unconditionally commit to a goal or deliverable because they have contingency time for the unexpected.