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Peas and Pods


Has anyone come across 'peas and pods' in relation to presentation of project information including timelines, risks and issues.  It may be that I have mis-spelled something.  Currently we use an Excel spreadsheet to indicate timelines, milestones, start and end dates, with text included for risk, issues and RAG status.  It has been suggested that we try something like 'peas and pods'.  This suggestion was made via a 'third party' who also had not heard of this method/tool.

Many thanks

Sally Penn

4 Responses

  1. as far as I’m aware it is no more than an analogy…….

    The pod is the overall project and the peas are the individual milestones that make up the project.

    Or upscaling it, the pod is the programme and the peas are the individual projects that contribute towards the ultime programme objective.

    Sounds as if you are already doing ‘project management’ so if it came from a 3rd party who didn’t know what it meant either it sounds as if they couldn’t blind you with their brilliance so they tried to baffle you with a bit if ………………..something else!

    Please correct me if you discover that I’m wrong!


  2. Peas and Pods

    I am not familar with Peas but we use PODs to mean




    this can apply to anything from a project to a presentation or meeting format. A POD will be presented at the beginning .

  3. ‘P’s not Peas?

    The Association of Project Managers (APM) Body of Knowlege (BoK) refers to ‘P’s in a Pod meaning Projects, Programmes and Portfolios (the ‘P’s).  The in a Pod bit is just because, apparently, it appealed to the author’s sense of humour.


    A Project is an organised piece of work to perform a change, a Programme is a set of projects that usually have some interrelationship (e.g. one project had to complete before another can start or the programme involves a major change which involves changes to procedures, software used and organisational design, too big for one project team to handle, so the changes in each of these are delivered by separate project and project team with co-ordination provided at the programme level) and a Portfolio is a group of programmes and projects which may or may not be interrelated, co-ordination (e.g. where there is a shared resource pool or where 2 or more independant projects may impact the same area to minimise competition or them tripping over each other) is provided at the portfolio level.  If you’re using something like PRINCE2 and MSP then usually the Project executive for each project in a programme will be on the Programme board and the Programme Executive from each programme may sit in a Portfolio board or teport in to the Portfolio manager.

  4. Peas and Pods in a Critical Network

    In PPM terms, Peas and Pods are elements in a Project (or Programme) Critical Network showing the dependencies between milestones or deliverables. Peas are milestones with fixed delivery dates; Pods are milestones where the delivery date is uncertain but lies within the envelope of the Pod.  See the Department for Education website and also and associated pages for further informsation.

    In 2003 Nigel Stevens of the DfES wrote software to abstract data from MS Project and generate a Critical Network (Peas and Pods chart) in Excel. The current status (ie confidence of delivery to schedule) of the Pea or Pod is denoted by its colour – R/RA/AG/G. Completed Peas and Pods are shown as Black. Dependencies between Peas and Pods are shown by blue arrows; red arrows where the dependency lies on the critical path. This software may still be in use within Whitehall.
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