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“Critical Chain” Project Management Presentation for KCMPUG March 19, 2003 Dave Higgins Consulting, Inc. Website: www.davehigginsconsulting.com Email:

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Presentation on theme: "“Critical Chain” Project Management Presentation for KCMPUG March 19, 2003 Dave Higgins Consulting, Inc. Website: www.davehigginsconsulting.com Email:"— Presentation transcript:

1 “Critical Chain” Project Management Presentation for KCMPUG March 19, 2003 Dave Higgins Consulting, Inc. Website:

2 Dave Higgins Dave Higgins has been a student of systems development and improvement methods for nearly 30 years. Together with Ken Orr (of The Ken Orr Institute) and the late Jean- Dominique Warnier, Dave was one of the principal architects of the Warnier/Orr systems development methodology back in the 1980’s. During the course of his career he has performed hundreds of seminars on various topics from program design and modification, to systems and data base design, to requirements definition, to planning and project management. Dave has written five books on various aspects of software development and is the author of numerous articles and white papers. His first book, published in 1979, was one of the first on developing quality software for personal computers, and was translated into over a dozen languages. In recent years, Dave has focused on the strategic uses of technology to improve business processes, specializing in business process reengineering, strategic planning, data warehousing and knowledge management. Recent projects include the reengineering of document scanning and records retention systems for a big-three auto maker, and developing an electronic publication strategy for a national engineering standards organization.

3 CCPM Research… Article on CCPM for Cutter Consortium

4 Origins of CCPM Eliyahu Goldratt, Israeli physicist & PhD The Goal, 1984 Theory of Constraints, 1990 The Critical Chain, 1997 Website:

5 Theory of Constraints Identify the system’s constraints Decide how to exploit the system’s constraints Subordinate and synchronize everything else to the above decisions Elevate the performance of the system’s constraints, If any of the above steps shift the constraints, go back to step 1

6 CCPM Key Objectives Develop a realistic plan Develop a reliable plan Keep it simple Show the Critical Chain Minimize Schedule Change Optimize Globally, Minimize work-in-process and multitasking

7 Developing the CCPM Schedule Create the initial plan Level the resources Determine the Critical Chain, Add buffers to the schedule

8 What’s A Critical Chain? Consider a “vanilla” project plan…

9 What’s A Critical Chain? We all know about the critical path…

10 What’s A Critical Chain? First, resource contention is ID’d… R2R1R3R4 R1R2 R4R1

11 What’s A Critical Chain? Identify the critical chain… R2R1R3R4 R1R2 R4R1

12 What’s A Critical Chain? Add buffers to the schedule… R2R1R3R4 R1R2 R4R1 Feeding Buffers Project Buffer

13 What’s A Critical Chain? The Critical Chain Project Schedule… R2R1R3R4 R1R2 R4R1 Customer Commitment Date Project Start Date

14 What’s A Critical Chain? The Critical Chain Project Schedule… R2R1R3R4 R1R2 R4R1 Customer Commitment Date Project Start Date

15 And the advantage is? R2R1R3R4 R1R2 R4R1 R2R1R3R4 R1R2 R4R1 Original Plan CCPM Plan

16 And the advantage is? R2R1R3R4 R1R2 R4R1 R2R1R3R4 R1R2 R4R1 Original Plan CCPM Plan

17 The question becomes… If CCPM is better, why isn’t everyone doing it? Projects will be shorter Projects will be easier to manage, Projects will be more successful

18 CCPM Assumptions Tasks are estimated at 50% vs. 90% Resource contention is eliminated Buffers are easier to manage Multitasking is minimized Projects are staggered, Time is money

19 Project facts of life Time Resource Scope After Larry Putnam,

20 Project facts of life Time Resource Scope Smaller ProjectBigger Project

21 Project facts of life Time Resource Scope When resource is fixed… time can vary.

22 Project facts of life Time Resource Scope When time is fixed… resource can vary.

23 Project facts of life Time Resource Scope When time & resource are fixed… scope can vary.

24 Project facts of life Time Resource Scope When time, resource and scope are fixed… Oopsie!

25 Project facts of life and CCPM Time Resource Scope If projects get shorter… don’t costs increase?

26 Self-fulfilling prophecy? Only progressive organizations have generally tried it Requires a commitment from management to change Scheduling Multitasking Begging the question: How much is CCPM?

27 Conclusion Some good ideas Not a radical departure If you try it, you’ll probably have some success… If you work at an organization that will let you try it, you’ll probably have success even if you don’t.


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