Evaluation Of Managerial Flexibilities In Critical Path Method Based Construction Schedules

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Abstract

Scheduling of a construction project can be done by using the Critical Path Method (CPM) in case the project is composed of interrelated activities that can be combined through a network. Given uncertainties nowadays and the related need for project schedule adaptations, the question is raised whether and how “traditional” CPM based schedules allow for flexibility in project planning and management.
In order to give an answer to this question, firstly the managerial flexibilities provided by CPM were evaluated at three levels, i.e. activity, path, and project. Afterwards, the CPM schedules of two different projects were examined. Finally, the first conclusion arrived was that, in spite of its criticized deterministic features, CPM contains various flexible aspects from a managerial viewpoint. Second, potential flexibilities in CPM are mainly associated with resource levelling, uncritical activities, uncritical paths, activity float times, activity float types, and float times of uncritical paths. Third, CPM contains complete flexibility through independent floats and resource levelling capability.
Investigating the flexible features of CPM in its traditional form, this study aims to open the way to develop a more flexible scheduling approach based on CPM and its extensions, which future self-organizing teams can adjust or apply.