During Project Management, it is sometimes necessary to identify trends. The process of identifying trends is called Trend Analysis. This is the part of Project Management where historical data is utilized, given a set of mathematical parameters, and then processed in order to determine any possible variance from an established baseline of given constraints such as Budget, Cost, Schedule, or Scope. These parameters are modeled after data from certain reporting periods, and utilized during the Project Management process to project how much variance a project manager can expect if the project is not adjusted in any way during an estimated period of time. The intent is for a specific trend to be anticipated and necessary adjustments can be made during the Project Management process in order to maximize the full potential of desired outcomes. Utilizing historical data is a proven method to be able to identify these trends. Trend Analysis is a mathematical scientific approach and eliminates potential error by utilizing precise calculations in order to provide the utmost accuracy. It is the most dependable and efficient method for anticipating possible future behavior and desired outcome of a specific project.
This term is defined in the 3rd and the 4th edition of the PMBOK.