What about SCHEDULE DANGLERS?

Open ends are great indicators of missing scope/s, incomplete and/or missing planning inputs. The solution is to tie all valid network activities in the right sequence, according to the approved project execution plan and path of construction.
A good schedule is a well-tied schedule and a well-tied schedule signifies complete scope.
Source: Frago, R. (2015/2017).Plan to Schedule, Schedule to Plan.ISBN 978-0-9947608-2-1.Canada.

A recent query from a colleague inspired me to write this short article on the subject of danglers, i.e. schedule danglers. I hope my humble insights will be useful.

Open start danglers are activities where the only predecessor is either Finish-to-Finish or Start-to-Finish, resulting in an open start to the activity. They are also known as “dangling activities.”

The number of activities with open start (danglers) should be zero.

The project scheduler should use Start-to-Start and Start-to-Finish links sparingly. Tie each activity end completely and properly to avoid danglers.

Read the full article by clicking the hyperlinked button below.

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Effective P6 Administration by Improving Primavera Security through Correct Management of the Responsible Manager Code (RMC)

Project’s request to restrict access of other Users to their project schedules & portfolios seemed to have failed. Unauthorized access remains a problem. Contractors working concurrently in the same database were able to sometime see the client’s schedule and modified certain critical attributes despite the security protocol being enforced. Worst of all, one schedule was completely deleted by someone and have to be recovered from the back-end by the Database Administrator through the existing back-up and recovery protocol.

Dorothy was checking Marco’s security access because he couldn’t add resources and found that all his projects have the Responsible Manager’s Code set to the Contractor’s OBS code. She figured that Marco might have used the contractor’s original schedule as a starting project file in developing his project schedule.

Back in June 2010, Primavera User John and Mark had put together a schedule that sat on the back burner while the Project team worked on other priorities. When it came time to set the baseline, John and Mark decided to do a quick check to make sure nothing had changed. Mark hit the F9 button and about 80% of the activities moved to the right. The dates moved by 4 to 20 days.

The two of them checked the calendar they were using but they were fine. The Primavera database Administrator checked who else was using the calendar and the schedule and found that only John and Mark were given direct access to this schedule.

John now went back to the schedule, changed some lags and logics trying to correct the schedule discrepancies. The effort took more than a day to complete, time which the project really do not have. What has gone wrong?

Find out what happened. Read the full article by clicking the hyperlinked button below.

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Canada Energy, Alberta’s Oil and Gas Future Needs Your Support !

Canada is an emerging world oil power and offers more opportunities leveraging a better positioned government system, international reputation, political stability, regulatory compliance, logistics and infrastructures. It has found its way up the top tier of the hierarchy, firmly demonstrating that Canada can potentially take the rein in the near future (Frago, Rufran.The Risky Future of Oil). It is a pity however, that in the last ten years, this growth was stunted by a series of downturns, aggravated by adverse major political upheavals.

Canada is sitting on large God-given oil and gas deposits so it is only logical to tap into them. Albertans will probably agree with me that it is a crazy idea to change the business focus to something else even in today’s hard time.

Imagine your dining table laden with delicious foods and fruits and your neighbor and some of your children telling you not to eat? While feeling hungry and frustrated, they suggest that you go out and find your food elsewhere. It is almost like, “Hey you do have legs but please do not use it for walking. Find something else to get you moving.” Do you agree with their suggestions or don’t you think they are foolish? (Frago, R., 2015.Keystone XL Final Rejection)

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Pushpendra (Pat) Patel takes on the role of PM Solution Pro Senior Project Controls Advisor

The newest addition to PM Solution Pro’s remarkable pool of consulting resources is Pushpendra Patel. With more than 13 remarkable years of experience on project management and controls, his client will surely be satisfied with the quality and timeliness when it comes to work deliverables. Pat, as he is fondly called by friends and colleagues, is a graduate of BS Civil Engineering with reinforced continuing education in Construction Management. He exudes confidence in his knowledge of project controls as he demonstrates his competence and accomplishments working in complex mega-Projects ranging from $100M-$2Billion.

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Digital Transformation for Utilities

Digital transformation is all around us, whether it is depositing a cheque by phone, asking Alexa to turn down lights in a room, or smart kitchen devices sending cooking progress via Bluetooth. Using remote sensors and analytics to capture data and discover valuable insights about customers, assets and suppliers has opened a frontier for new innovative services and approaches to doing business.

Broadly placed under the term digitalization, this development gives an organization better visibility into their operations and more control over outcomes, saving much time and effort while reducing human error and improving the overall customer experience and service quality. Is there a business case for digital transformation of utilities that operate vast system of assets and deliver vital services to many customers?

As digital applications become mainstream, it is getting vital for the utilities to have a digital strategy to effectively manage the increasingly complex nature of their networks and services.

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The Phantom Schedule

A phantom schedule (ghost schedule) is a non-official schedule prepared behind the official scheduling scene. The timing of its creation can be anywhere between project start date to completion. The urgency governing its creation depends largely on the specific purpose and necessity to which it was created.

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The Three Blind Project Managers and the Elephant

Oftentimes, the discussion on subjects such as risk has a tendency to turn into something more esoteric. When that happens, as a Risk Manager, we should appreciate the brilliance of some people’s individual premises, suppositions, commentaries, and conclusions, for they can add value and substance to what we already know.

There is an old tale about the three blind men who encountered an elephant for the first time and attempt to learn about it by touch alone. Somehow, I am now tempted to change the story to the three blind project managers who encountered risk for the first time and attempted to learn about it.

The story about the three project managers and a project is like the story of Jain’s parable of The Blind Men and the Elephant. The parable is quite relevant to what we are discussing here.

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What about Boxing and Risk-based Management?

Boxing is a risky event for all involved, most especially the boxers. Yes, the protagonists themselves. Monitoring risk can be like watching boxing. Two competitors, both with the intention to strike whenever there is opportunity. They execute the plan, psyche each other, try to prevent and mitigate the threats of getting KO’ed, strive to make the right response, and to make the right decision through keen observation, at a flinch of a muscle (risk indicator).

As a risk-based management practitioner, the bloody sport of boxing is so exciting and fascinating. In my view, it relates so well, … so very close with the concept and philosophies of risk management. “No pain, no gain,” as the old saying goes!

Boxers, their coaches, and cornermen have to come up with a response plan to prevent or mitigate the punches. They put together a strategy prior to the bout similar to a project preparing the risk management plan. They know that boxing judges have a decision to make and it has to be the right one, that is of course, one in their favour! They have only one end goal in mind, to be the winner!

In risk management, as in boxing, playing and losing can still be an Opportunity! Amazing Statistics!

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How about understanding your Project’s Schedule Critical Path better?

Critical Path is a measure of schedule flexibility, discernable through each activity total float. On any network path, flexibility is the positive difference between early and late dates (PMI, Project Risk Management, 2013). It is the shortest time possible for a project to finish.

“Be careful of relative critical path. This is the critical path relative to some select points of constraint only.”

“The path it generates does not represent the overall project’s critical path. The real overall critical path of the schedule is one generated by the calculation of a schedule that has no constraint, a schedule that flows freely.

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Happy 4th of July 2019 to all our American Family, Friends and Colleagues!

Let no one ever forget…

“We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed, by their Creator, with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty, and the pursuit of Happiness.”

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