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Substantiating Delays in a Project

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Nilesh Jain
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Hello Everyone,

I'm doing scheduling for four years and slowly pulled into claim analysis and schedule auditing. Therefore, I have limited knowledge and your expert opinion would be appreciated.

I'm working on a project with 12,000 and doing schedule audit every month. Every update, the contractor is trying to compress the critical path by reducing the activity duration or by overlapping them. The reason given for every update is 'According to the Pull Planning Session,' and the contractor is just trying to maintain the contractual finish date on the schedule. However, I know that they are behind schedule and eventually, the Owner would be in trouble. 

My question is, what is the best practice I should adopt to make sure the Owner is protected, and if we ever go for a claim, the owner has a stronger case against the contractor?

Thanks for your time and looking forward to hearing from you.

Regards,

Nilesh Jain

Replies

Stephen Devaux
User offline. Last seen 14 hours 6 min ago. Offline
Joined: 23 Mar 2005
Posts: 640

Wow! Indeed, a really good question!

And a really, really good answer from Patrick!

Fraternally in project management,

Steve the Bajan

Patrick Weaver
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Joined: 18 Jan 2001
Posts: 274
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Hi Nilesh,

Your question is really good!

What not to do:  Don't get involved in 'helping' the contractor plan its work. If you do you will accept some responsibility.

What to do:

1. Make sure payments accurately reflect work actually accomplished.

2. As far as possible make sure all of the client inputs are delivered in accord with the original program requirements. If these are delivered later than this the contractor can claim 'pacing' if the deliveries actually cause a delay the contractor can claim the delivery was the overriding cause of the delay and seek EOTs with costs.

3. Keep really accurate records of everything done on a daily basis. Date stamped photographs help. Signed records are good. Make sure the progress information is shared with the contractor (no surprises).

4. Expect lots of claims from the contractor and gear up early. 

5. Don't assume the contractors Head Office knows what is going on.  Regular requests to the head office to explain schedule slippages each month (eg, contract issued last month was for 1000cu.m. only achieved was 700cu.m - please explain) will put pressure on the site to perform. Focus these on one or two key metrics only.

It may help to get expert advice early (but this tends to be expensive).

Some free resources that mey help are avaiable at: https://mosaicprojects.com.au/PMKI-TPI-080.php