Drexel University PROJ 502 Project Planning & Scheduling Week Seven Lecture Notes Theme: Advanced Planning and Scheduling (cont’d)Outline: • Goldratt's Critical Chain• Theory of ConstraintsThe lecture for this week is a continuation from the last one regarding advanced planning and scheduling topics. Specifically for this lecture, critical chain and theories of constraints will be discussed in turn. • Goldratt's Critical ChainCritical Chain Project Management (CCPM) is a method of planning and managing projects that focus on resources necessary to execute each project effort. This method of planning and managing was developed by Dr. Eliyahu Goldratt and was discussed in his book CRITICAL CHAIN, published in 1997. CCPM does not focus necessarily on task order and scheduling as does the Critical Path Method (CPM) and the Program Estimating and Reporting Technique (PERT), but rather Golratt’scritical chain project management approach focuses on resources loaded and aims to keep resources on a level basis throughout the project. Following this management method requires flexibility in project task start times and allows for switches between tasks and task chains to stay on schedule. In using this method, project managers must keep in mind resource contention and activity and task dependencies to identify the longest “chain” in the project. The first step in working this method is to create a complete and realistic project plan. A project plan is created similar to CPM. The plan is worked backward from completion date with tasks starting as late as possible. There are two durations –best guess and safe guess –used for each task that are identified with this CCPM approach: Best guess –50% Probability “Safe” guess –90% Probability Resources are assigned and the plan is leveled at the 50% estimated probability. The critical chain is identified as the longest chain –that is the longest sequence of resource-leveled tasks through all of the project. Buffers are used in this method to help estimate dates and are useful for monitoring the project’s schedule and financial performance.
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