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PROGRESS MEASUREMENT UNITS

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I need some help here. We do know that in an EPC Project Environment, Engineering efforts are measured in Man-hr, man-day etc, Procurement is measured in terms of cost. How about construction, how do we measure deliverables more objectively.

I must say that I have just joined the forum and my expectations are quite high.

Thanks

Usman Bakundi

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Jeelani amin
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Thanks Zoltan really appreciate your reply.

Zoltan Palffy
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1. What aspects of delivery and construction will be monitored?

Asnwer: All aspects of the delivery and construction will be monitored. Some items will be in the project schedule and some will be monitored by other means and methods.

2. How monitoring will be measured for each aspect?

Answer: The baseline schedule will be used as the measuring stick which progress will be measured agasint. 

If your scheule is manloaded and or unit loaded with manhours and or quantities then you can use this as your gauage to measure your progress. EVERY activity has one thing in common and that is that it takes MANHOURS and or dollars to do. So your controlling factor will be your manhours which will be driven by your quantites. 

3. Criteria or definition of good progress for each aspect?

Answer: if the activity has an actual start date within the date range of the early start and late start date is good progress.

if the activity has an actual finish date within the date range of the early finish and late finish date is good progress.

If the overall total float on the project is 0 or less

Zero injuries on the project and no loss time incidents

The number of NCN's are low

The number of RFI's are low

The number of change orders are low

Payment requests are turned around in a timely manner

Jeelani amin
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Hi to all,

 

how can we describe in detail given below for any project.

·         What aspects of delivery and construction will be monitored?

·         How monitoring will be measured for each aspect?

·         Criteria or definition of good progress for each aspect?

 

Your soonest reply is higly appreciated.

Samantha Mukhamej...
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Hello everyone!

I have a high level project schedule with basic wbs for construction projects: engineering, procurement, approval & permits, construction, commissioning. 

I don’t want to have a detailed schedule with resources, because I will not be able to take updates for each item.

As an output I should have a planned, actual progress for weekly/monthly reports. Is there any methods for progress measuring in primavera schedule?

Two of them I already consider: 1) Manually put Physical % Complete (but don’t know how it works at the end, would it effect on finish dates/durations)?

2) Using Step weightage.

Would appreciate any help/advice and maybe examples on how you manage with this.

Thanks in advance! 

Sami Mohamed
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Hi everyone,

I do think that the approch to measure progress in EPC projects depends very much on type of industry. (i.e multi-story buildings, infrastructures, oil & gas ..... etc.). Owner versus Contractor point of veiw should also considered.

In commercial buildings, as construction phase forms the great deal (wight& time&value) with relatively hight man-hours units in the project, its recommended to apply man-hours unit as basis for measurement. while in petrochemical industry, procurement phase normally carry the highest parameters ;wight -time-value (with relatively lower man-hours unit) it is more wisely to apply cost value as measurement basis.

Another essential point is the paymemnt criteria, as it is in many cases it apply it own measurement basis.

Sami

Mehdi Rashidi Ala...
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Hi,
The best method is based on cost in the EPC ( for uniform items)

Manivachagan Chel...
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Dear all

My opinion is like this

There are 2 methods I have come across

1)Distribute the weight factors for E,P,C based on cost and with in each phase base it on Manhours or cost as appropriate

2)Fix weight based only on Manhours.In case of Procurment it shall be manhours for services and not manufacturing manhours.The progress based on this will be physical progress.Naturally in normal EPC project Construction will come out with higher percentage.The find the ratio of physical progress and supply progress based on cost.This will give overall project progress for the purpose financial controls.

Regards
Mani
Nestor Principe
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Dear All,

Bernard is very right. It all depends on what you want to know. Its a pitty theres no standard to be followed.

The units in term of money will always serve its purpose to monitor the budget but not the physical progress. Other units may not tell the true status of the project unless critical activities have been filtered out to produce the report.

So it will always be case to case basis, I supposed.

Have anybody tried to devise standard unit for measuring progress? Say, progress points. What is the formula? Am sure everybody will be happy to share their own ideas.

regards,

Nestor
Ronaldo Quilao
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Its my pleasure to share my method of computing activity progress. Each activity has a quantity in terms of volume, area, pieces, etc and we usually estimated the man-hour, the equipment-hour and of course the cost of each activity to complete. W e have to derive the unit rate per quantity considering all the data to accomplish the said task. Then compute the duration using the production rate of manpower or equipment that we are going to utilize. Input these datas into the program. And when updating the progress just compute or determine the number of pieces, total area or volume, linear meter whatever for the cut-off period, in this case you can have both computed manhour, eqpt hour and cost by multiplying to the derived unit cost/rate. Or let the software do it for you.
Bernard Ertl
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Money and time are not linear across a project (in most cases). Earned manhours are the best measuring stick for completeness of a project (versus the original scope of work).

Consider a very simple example of a project with three tasks:

Task A: Spans from beginning to end (5 days) with 2 men (rate = 2)
Task B: Spans 2 days from the beginning with 6 men (rate=1)
Task C: Spans 2 days from the beginning with 2 men (rate=4)

Scenario 1

Task A achieves a full day of production, tasks B and C achieve no progress. All men are on site.

Time - Schedule still meets original critical path. 1 out of 9 scheduled days is progressed. Project is 11.1% complete.
Money - 18 rate-days out of 48 scheduled rate-days burned. Project is 37.5% complete.
Manhours - 2 man-days out of 26 scheduled man-days progressed. Project is 7.7% complete.

Scenario 2

Task A and C achieve a full day of production, task B achieves no progress. All men are on site.

Time - Schedule still meets original critical path. 2 out of 9 scheduled days is progressed. Project is 22.2% complete.
Money - 18 rate-days out of 48 scheduled rate-days burned. Project is 37.5% complete.
Manhours - 4 man-days out of 26 scheduled man-days progressed. Project is 15.4% complete.

Scenario 3

All tasks achieve a full day of production with only half a crew.

Time - Schedule still meets original critical path. 3 out of 9 scheduled days is progressed. Project is 33.3% complete.
Money - 9 rate-days out of 48 scheduled rate-days burned. Project is 18.8% complete.
Manhours - 10 man-days out of 26 scheduled man-days progressed. Project is 38.5% complete.

I suppose which stick you use depends on what you are hoping to measure (completeness of the work scope or completeness of the budget).

Bernard Ertl
InterPlan Systems Inc. - Project Management Software, Project Planning Software
Ray Messinger
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While we may be in it for the money, it may not be the best unit for controlling a project. I have had a lot of problems trying to use money as the unit for tracking Progress.

There are so many factors that can distort what is actually happening. Procurement being one but also our finance dept. plays accounting games with the numbers so it is difficult syncronizing the values.

I think it is better to keep the E,P and C curves separate, using the units best suited.
Mark Lomas
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Tomas makes a good point, but I want to reply to Lutfallah - its ALL about money. Every single one of us is working for a company to make money. Not to build houses, or refineries, or software, but to make money. Profit and Loss. End.
Tomas Rivera
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To all:

This subject of discussion about progress measurement units is an ongoing discussion. It comes and goes all the time. And there are diferences of opinion.

But one thing I never hear or read is what is the purpose of the progress percentage, or how this information is going to be used. One superficial purpose is just to state or define the progress percentage, so we have a sense of how far ahead or behing our project is. But, the real focus should be on whether we are performing according to plan. And this means that we need to compare actual progress against target progress. And it also means that we need to find out whether we are within a specified range or how far or near we are relative to a specified target. And this is the key word: RELATIVE. We do not need to fight on whether or progress is 50% or 65%. We need to fight on how far our project is, relative to our target. That is we need to determine a relative value not a discrete value.

If you use diferent measurement units and determine your relative values, you are going to find out they are the same, as long as you use units that you can allocate to all your activities.

Tomas Rivera
Altek System
Scheduling of high performance
construction projects
Lutfullah Atasoy
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It depends who you are ?
If you are the investor or client, u r correct the most common unit is the money!

But if u r a general contractor or an engineering company managing the project for and on behalf of the client, for my oppinion the correct parameter is the manhour.

Why ?

The material/equipment cost of a plant (lets assume a refinery) is almost about 65% then doest it mean when the all equipment or material delivered to site the total progress would be equal to 65% or higher ? Of course not!!

You may think another way. Lets assume you made one year office building rental agreement, and as per your contact you have to pay all the rental amount beforehand. Then your cash out-flow is 100% rental fee. Your progress and cost accruel in rental agreement should be on monthly prorata basis "total contact amount / 12"

To facilitate a progress control system for an EPC contact a comon basis for all diferent disciplines should be set for the associated manhours for each activity.

Then you may collect all apples and bananas with the same unit.
Ray Messinger
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What if you want a total project EPC progress curve? What unit do you use? The only common unit is Money. You have to have a way to convert other units to $$.

Should you include the value of material in place in your construction curve?
Lutfullah Atasoy
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I would reccommend you to employ both methods at the same time; they are physical progress measurement and their equivalent manhour progress. Why I am proposing this hybrid method ? The answer is simle: Otherwise you have lost the mony and your contractor.

An example : Lets assume that you have 200 tons of piping work which 70% of this work are consist of large diameter pipes

In piping erection works: Large diameter pipes are heavy and it is very easy to make physical and money wise progress on 16" or 20" diameter pipework. Within the first 4 months your large diameter pipe work will be completed. But the balance of work consistig of 3/4" - 1/2" small bored pipes will last at least another 3 months.

I would reccomend you to utilize the hybrid method for progress measurement otherwise there is always a big risk associated with the sole physical or financial quantities.
Mark Lomas
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In construction, you can measure man-hours, but it is more meaningful to measure the value of work completed. Without going into full-blown Earned Value Management of projects, simple tracking of progress through earned value gives a useful indicator (planned vs. actual).

If by deliverables (in construction) you mean design deliverables, the same technique can be applied by assigning values (if they dont exist) to each deliverable or milestone. Then track work completed (planned vs. actual).

In both the above, a key is to review work completed vs. cost expended. Simplistically, if you have expended 50% of your cost when you have produced 25% of the work (and expected to spend 25% of your cost), then drastic action is needed.

Is this the level of info you are after ?

See also this thread

Bernard Ertl
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We measure manhours for industrial process plant maintenance projects (shutdowns / turnarounds).

Bernard Ertl
InterPlan Systems Inc. - Project Management Software, Project Planning Software