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How Fast Tracking and Crashing Different When Referring to a Project Schedule, Essay Example

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Essay

Fast tracking and crashing are techniques employed in schedule compression. Both are used when the outcome is expected to create output in a quicker way than it is stated in the project of origin. The project scope should however remain constant.  Project managers are supposed to evaluate their schedules weekly in order to keep up with project demands and in case of any backlog. Such techniques are used to get the project back on schedule. It is applied when there is competition among project managers intending to bring out similar output in the shortest time (Meredith & Mantel, 2011).

During crashing, the extra cost of rushing the project against the projected returns will be reviewed to determine if the project can be completed in a shorter timeline. More resources can be added to the project, a company may need to pay more or to hasten some payment processes to get vital components delivered faster than scheduled. It may have to expand working hours to allow for overtime and over time dues. These additional items among others will be considered feasible if their involvement will ensure faster completion of the project. For instance, a project a manager can decide to employ additional labor on a casual basis whether skilled or not to assist in a common activity in the project to reduce the period allocated to the usual laborers in the same activity. An activity scheduled for thirty days may be shortened to twenty days (Gray & Larson, 2011).

Fast tracking on the other hand involves re-designing previous schedules or activities in an on-going project. It is a technique in which phases or activities that normally would be done sequentially are performed partially or wholly in parallel. This can be done by allocation of several processes to be carried out simultaneously rather than waiting for each activity to run on separate periods. Activities here can be overlapped as long as the outcome is desirable. However, challenges may occur when activities have to run at the same time and some of the activities are dependent on others. For instance, if a design of a product change along the way, you cannot continue with production until the design process is revisited (Gray & Larson, 2011).

A thumb rule is projected whereby one can employ activities to be fast-tracked by up to a level of thirty-three percent. If for example your design has been completed to sixty-six percent, you can fast tract stages two and three immediately instead of waiting for the design process to get to a completion. There are many instances when a client may need a project to be hastened due to various reasons and this calls for swift actions on the part of project managers; if the project may not meet the estimated deadlines, one should re-design a quick plan to meet the mitigation measures. One can re-design the development of the training material and ensure quicker outputs of the training process so as to kick-off the process without waiting for a full training schedule. The final requirements of a training process can be done along the project timeline. In crashing, a project manager will add more resources to the same project activity but in fast tracking, people may be allocated to different activities: overall, both techniques are intended to reduce the schedule (Meredith & Mantel, 2011).

References

Gray, C. F., & Larson, E. W. (2011). Project management: The managerial process (5th ed.).    New York, NY: McGraw-Hill/Irwin.

Meredith, J. R., & Mantel Jr, S. J. (2011). Project management: a managerial approach. Wiley.

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