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TOPIC: Iterative & Overlapping phases

Iterative & Overlapping phases 5 months 2 weeks ago #17747

  • Ashvini K. Chhabra
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I came across 3 types of phase to phase relationships. Sequential , iterative & overlapping phases.

In Pmbok 6, these 3 terms are mentioned but not defined. Sequential relationship is self explanatory. Iterative is defined as life cycle but not as a phase.

I read in one of the study guide that iterative phase means when more than 1 phase is being performed at the same time whereas overlapping is defined as one phase starts before the prior phase completes.
In iterative phases , does the start date of all phase & end date of each phase may be different ?
In iterative phase, more than 1 phase being performed means 2,3 or more phase run concurrently ?


What I understood is that meaning wise iterative & overlapping phases do sound similar as 2 phases run concurrently.
In overlapping phases, start & end dates of each phase is different ?

If there is a similarity between iterative & overlapping phases then what is the differentiating factor.
I would like to see the diagram depicting the iterative & overlapping phases for better understanding. Please share website URL or document depicting the diagrams of iterative & overlapping phases.

Iterative & Overlapping phases 5 months 2 weeks ago #17769

  • Donald Terry, PMP, PMI-ACP
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Hi Ashvini,

Sequential phases are conducted sequentially rather than concurrently. Thus, you are conducting one phase to completion before starting the next phase. For example, phase 1 is started and completed, then phase 2 is started and completed, etc.

Iterative phases are conducted iteratively. Thus, you may bounce back and forth between phases. For example, you might complete phase 1 and then iterate between phases 2 and 3 before moving on to phase 4. In this scenario, you may cycle through phases 2 and 3 several times before moving on to phase 4.

Overlapping phases are similar to sequential phases except that a phase might not be completed when the following phase starts. For example, you might start phase 1 on January 1st and phase 2 on March 1st, and then complete phase 1 on June 1st and phase 2 on August 1st, etc.
Donald Terry, MBA, PMP, PMI-ACP

Full disclosure: I work for OSP International as an independent contractor
Last edit: by Donald Terry, PMP, PMI-ACP.

Iterative & Overlapping phases 5 months 1 week ago #17781

  • Ashvini K. Chhabra
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Thanks Don,
I understood about sequential & overlapping phases.

What I understood from the scenario about iterative phases is that phase 1,2 & 3 can be performed in parallel or concurrently . Does it also mean these 3 phases will have same start start date & may have same or different end dates?
Please confirm whether my understanding about iterative phases is right or wrong.

Iterative & Overlapping phases 5 months 1 week ago #17783

  • Donald Terry, PMP, PMI-ACP
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I suppose iterative phases could be performed as overlapping or sequential. In my opinion, I think you are getting into a level of detail and complexity that is beyond what you will likely encounter on the actual exam. You can spend an inordinate amount of time attempting to gain an in-depth understanding of a concept that likely will not even surface on your exam. I would recommend spending your time with the concepts that will feature prominently on the exam.
Donald Terry, MBA, PMP, PMI-ACP

Full disclosure: I work for OSP International as an independent contractor

Iterative & Overlapping phases 5 months 1 week ago #17787

  • Ashvini
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Hi Don,
The reason for raising this question is due as I came across 1 practice question whose scenario pertained to phase relationship . My answer turned out to be wrong.
I chose the answer as overlapping whereas the actual answer is given as iterative. I searched on google but I couldn't find info about iterative phases rather I found info about iterative development cycle.

In Kim Held man's book, iterative phases are defined as more than 1 phase is being performed at the same time whereas overlapping phases are defined as one phase starts before the prior phase completes.

I didn't find any diagram in this book depicting the overlapping & iterative phase relationship.

Hence, I hope you understand my concern.
.
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