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(CSC-3107) The Power of Projections: Innovative Schedule Forecasting Techniques

Level: Advanced
Venue: 2019 AACE International Conference & Expo, June 16-19, 2019, New Orleans, LA, USA

Abstract: “When will it finish, and how will we get there?” These are the most common questions on any construction project, yet the most challenging to answer.

Schedule forecasting is critical. The ability to accurately project progress can enable frequent benchmarking and identify periods when production deviates from the plan. There are two common approaches to schedule forecasting — Critical Path Method (CPM) and Earned Value Management (EVM) — but each has its own drawbacks. CPM provides a clear path for the project, but may be subjective and biased. Conversely, EVM techniques can be applied to estimate the end date, but may be overly optimistic.

To increase confidence in forward-looking schedules, this paper explores three quantitative and practical methods that provide both a clear end date and an outline of future progress:
  • Method 1: Maintaining Average Production
  • Method 2: Modeling Performance Against a Standard S-Curve
  • Method 3: Applying Baseline with and without Inefficiencies for an Expected Performance Band
Different scenarios (based on the practical limits of available data) will guide method selection. Additionally, this paper will describe an actual use case in which the methods were applied and benefits were realized. The goal of this paper is to provide project managers with the necessary tools to make confident decisions and projections without relying on CPM updates or an EVM program.