Critical Path Scheduling in laymen’s terms is planning, measuring and control. This describes one of the essential tools of project management – The Project Schedule. It is what most people think of when they hear the term project management. It is a dedicated course in any Construction Management curriculum. It is the basis for a majority of construction claims. Lastly, it is only way to show the complicated relationship between tasks, time, manpower, equipment production, material delivery, delay, weather, and all the other inputs of a construction project. In summary, it is a large calculation that is displayed in graphic and numerical form. For these reasons, it is important to put scheduling techniques in the proper context of the essential roles of project control wherever it occurs.
Typically, Planning and Controlling are performed by the Project Manager. Measuring is done by others. So, our discussion will not include the latter.
When related to construction processes, the responsibility for directing the project occurs at several levels, is performed at various times, and is typically the responsibility of multiple entities throughout the life cycle of a project. However, regardless of whether we are discussing the subject with a construction management firm, a general contractor, or a subcontractor there is a commonality in the methods and practices used by each of these organizations in contracting.
Purchase a copy of my McGraw-Hill book, Managing a Construction Firm on Just 24 Hours a Day. We offer a bundle with Excel templates that are featured in the book and 5 on-line courses to help teach construction business concepts. Go to www.stevensci.com and click on the book link
Our workbook companion with 10 case studies is titled, The Business Management Workbook for Construction with Case Studies is now available.This text is focused as an assist for Colleges, Associations and Contractor Training Programs that teach the business of construction.
My next book, The New Business Model of Construction Contracting is planned for December 2007. Its focus concerns the changing construction environment and what processes address those changes.
Matt Stevens is President of Stevens Construction Institute, Inc. A management consulting firm which works only with construction contractors. Learn more at www.stevensci.com. Take a free course at www.constructioncbt.com and sign in as a new student.