How to handle projected delays in projects – Simple Scenario

Posted on

While planning for projects, you may come across scenarios where a project is projected to end later than preferred. This articles discusses options to handle such projected delays, in a simple scenario where tasks do not have predecessors. In my next article, I address the scenario where predecessors are involved. The Project Planner (Advanced) Excel template is used for this demonstration.

 

SETTINGS

 

Let’s take a simple scenario. Our planning period is between Nov 1st, 2015 and Apr 1st, 2016. We have 4 resources and their available hours are indicated as below.

Project Planner Advanced Excel Template - Settings

Project Planner Advanced Excel Template – Settings

 

We have one project called PROJECT ONE where our preferred end date is Dec 31st, 2015.

Project Planner Advanced Excel Template - Projects
Project Planner Advanced Excel Template – Projects

 

The project has 2 tasks, one assigned for Designer One and the second assigned to Developer One.

Project Planner Advanced Excel Template - Tasks
Project Planner Advanced Excel Template – Tasks

 

PROJECT SUMMARY

 

When we look at project summary, we realize that the project will not complete on time. The project is expected to complete on Jan 8th, while our preferred end date is Dec 31st.

 

Project Planner Advanced Excel Template - Project Summary
Project Planner Advanced Excel Template – Project Summary

 

This is also shown visually in the timeline view.

Project Planner Advanced Excel Template - Project Timeline
Project Planner Advanced Excel Template – Project Timeline

 

REASON

In order to better understand the reason for the delay, we look at the Task schedule. It is clear that Task 1 is the reason, where it is expected to go on until 8th Jan.

Project Planner Advanced Excel Template - Task Schedule
Project Planner Advanced Excel Template – Task Schedule

 

SOLUTION

Now, to address this issue, let’s see if we can assign the task to another resource. Designer Two actually has more working hours (40 compared to 25) every week than Designer One. So, let’s assign the task to Designer Two (on the condition that Designer Two has the skill to do Task 1).

 

Project Planner Advanced Excel Template - Tasks Re-assignment
Project Planner Advanced Excel Template – Tasks Re-assignment

 

I am sure you predicted the result. 🙂 The project will now complete on time.

Project Planner Advanced Excel Template - Project Timeline
Project Planner Advanced Excel Template – Project Timeline

 

We can see that in the task schedule that Task 1 is now expected to complete on 15th Dec.

Project Planner Advanced Excel Template - Project Timeline
Project Planner Advanced Excel Template – Project Timeline

 

Assigning the delayed task to a different resource with increased availability will increase the chances of completion on time.

 

Optionally, if you can increase the availability of the original resource, that would work too. For example, if we can increase the working hours of Designer One (from 25 to 40 per week) as shown in the image below, that would result in the same result of Project completing on time.

 

Project Planner Advanced Excel Template - Adding Hours of Availability
Project Planner Advanced Excel Template – Adding Hours of Availability

 

In the next article, I will discuss a slightly more complex scenario of projected project delays.

2 thoughts on “How to handle projected delays in projects – Simple Scenario

  1. Hi,

    Do you have a remedy or excel template/program, where I have not only a a human resource, but also a waiting period of “LLI materials coming from sub-suppliers” over a longer period of time.

    1. Have you tried creating a task for this waiting period? The template can be used for any type of task. The maximum duration for planning is 1 year.
      Please let us know.
      Thanks & Best wishes.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *