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3 metrics, endless possibilities

I’m a true advocate for using (a basic implementation) of EVM on all your projects, or at least the philosophy. The use of Earned Value Management metrics gives a good insight in your current project status at a simple glance. By planning your project carefully and assigning budgets, in hours, euros, documents, resources, to your activities, a world of possibilities opens. Every project stakeholder can have their own personalized reports on their points of interest, with their own style of preference.

The level of project controls maturity has a great impact on the insight you can gain using the same, simple metrics provided by EVM. Let me take you through the different levels of reporting maturities, followed by some ideas on how to improve further than the classic methods.

Niels Ligtvoetby Niels Ligtvoet

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Scheduling progressed activities

In this blog post, we’re going to dig deeper into a question you will face when preparing or reviewing a schedule update. How do you address “out-of-sequence” progress in Primavera P6?
The user has 3 interesting choices in the schedule options on how the software deals with progressed activities that are out of sequence, these choices are:

  • Retained logic
  • Progress override
  • Actual dates

This blog post will  address these 3 options, which will help you better represent reality in your progress updates.

Matthijs Warnezby Matthijs Warnez

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Two + two types of Float

When using the Critical Path Method (CPM) in traditional project management software, Total Float (TF) and Free Float (FF) are calculated, which most project managers know and use. But there is more to it. We can gain deeper insight in which timeframe an activity can shift, and the effects on the related activities by calling in two more types of float. The Interfering Float (INTF) and the Independent Float (INDF). Let me tell you how to interpret them, help decision making, and support claim prevention/preparation by using these four characteristics.

Niels Ligtvoetby Niels Ligtvoet

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Primavera P6 and the Longest Path

There is more to showing THE Critical Path in Primavera than your project manager can imagine. Primavera allows you to change certain settings to define the criticality of activities: you can define a threshold value for total float, or choose for the longest path instead of a total float-based critical path.

It is likely that you are interested in all activities that drive a certain milestone. And it makes much more sense to monitor the longest path towards this milestone instead of the critical path defined by total float. This very useful option is however a little bit hidden in Primavera P6 and I desperately want to share it with you! It is a method I use on EVERY SINGLE PROJECT.

Gert Truyensby Gert Truyens

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Earned Value Management: cheat sheet

As a temporary conclusion to our Earned Value Management blog series, we’d like to provide you with an EVM formula cheat sheet. This file contains all essential formulas for calculating the Earned Value metrics, indicators and measures. Download the .pdf for free.

Niels Ligtvoetby Niels Ligtvoet

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Primavera P6 duration issues – Hours per time period explained

Primavera is a wonderful tool but sometimes it’s calculations give weird results. For instance when filling in durations of an activity, you might’ve encountered a problem similar to the ones below:

  • Your activity duration is showing as 5 days but it starts on the 1st and already ends the 4th
  • Your units/time is showing 8h/d but Primavera is actually calculating with 12h/d

What is going on? Well it’s probably something to do with your hours per Time period settings.

Matthias van Campenby Matthias van Campen

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The To Complete Performance Index (TCPI)

How can we get the most out of our EVM metrics? We’ve evaluated our current cost and schedule performance, and have seen how to forecast the Estimate At Completion (EAC). Now is the time to evaluate the realism of our project’s Budget At Completion (BAC). Following the current conditions, is the aimed for budget still sufficient?

One of the most powerful (and underutilized) measures EVM grants us is the To Complete Performance Index. This is the Cost Performance Index (CPI) at which you must execute the remainder of the work to deliver the project within a certain budget. The budget aimed for has sometimes become idealistic. Comparing the TCPI with the current CPI gives a good insight on whether the foreseen budget or the EAC remain realistic. The difference between the cumulative CPI and the TCPI value should trigger the re-evaluation of the Estimate At Completion.

Niels Ligtvoetby Niels Ligtvoet

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