If your project is late in the delivery, what should you do?
In theory, you have 2 choices, either you can crash the projects by engaging more resources (cash) or you fast track the projects by compressing the schedule (doing things parallel).
By definition, Project Crashing is to INCREASE the amount of RESOURCES (cash / funding) allocated so that the job could complete on time. It is important to note that crashing is done only to CRITICAL activities.
Fast Tracking is to compress or meet project schedule with the existing resources. In fast tracking, activities that were planned to perform in sequence are scheduled to perform in parallel or partially in parallel. Same manpower is doing a couple of tasks concurrently.
However in practice, you can also try this method in order not to execute the above approaches. There are some experienced project managers that might already been using such approach.
Seek the client to raise a change request. Thus forcing the project team to re-look at the original schedule, resources, cost etc. The objective is to make use of the client’s change request to reset the project constraints.
Whatever new request comes to the project team, the project manager can make use of the project triple constraints to his advantage, be it a scope, budget and timeline.
Once the change request is approved, then there is no need to exercise the crashing and schedule fast track. Project Manager can then reset the entire project schedule and seek for further resources, such as time, funding etc.
There will be no more issues once the change request is accepted and approved by the requester.
If the client extends the revised schedule (normally it is the future date), then the project team will have a sufficient time to finish the job. The entire project will not be tense to be completed within the short and tight schedule. Additional charges can also be incurred for the additional resources’ time.
If there is scope change, project manager can make use of change request to reset the project.
Define the additional requests and ensure the project team can deliver the additional items.
Project Manage will reset the expectations, such as longer time required, and more funding to be invested. Once the client accepts the new changes, the entire project will be reset from yellow status to green.
Non documented additional scope is known as scope creep. In order to safeguard Project Manager’s job security, some project managers tend to accept such additional undocumented or unapproved request.
All additional change should come with a cost. If the project has overspent the approved budget, the change request can easily adjust the project loss.
Simply include the cost for the additional request plus the original shortfall into the project change request so that there is no project loss.
As a project manager, you have the 3 golden balls to your advantage: Scope, Budget and Timeline
If the client initiated a change in the project during delivery/ implementation, following could happen
- New Scope – Budget (Cost) increased and Timeline will be lengthened.
- Over Spent Project Funding – Use change request to recoup back the funding loss.
- Insufficient Time: Same approach by using the change request
On the other hand, what should you do if the internal management wants to expedite the project. For further suggestions, please share your comments, I will share the various proposed steps with you in another note. Stay tune.