How To Analyse a Construction Schedule

Updated: Aug 24


A single mistake in construction scheduling might cost millions upon millions of dollars.

We have to pay attention to detail with our scheduling, before during and after creating them.


And by after - I don’t mean when acting upon them!


There is an often-overlooked stage that should come write before that.


It’s called: Schedule Analysis.


It is a necessary task to find facts and issues that may exist within a schedule.


We want to do this to make sure that we are complying with the client’s specifications, using an intelligent approach to carrying out the project, and to make sure that the schedule is coherent overall.



The normal approach is that the contractor draws up a schedule and submits it to the owner’s side for approval.


Now, contractors should be doing schedule review themselves to try and be as efficient as possible and scale their business - but that doesn’t mean they will!


So there should be schedule analysis done on both sides of the Construction project, to come to the most efficient method for going about the construction.


With this, we look to arrive at the quickest and most efficient way of doing things.


How do we do it?


Schedule Review and Analysis used to be a long and arduous task involving pouring through schedules manually, using intelligence to suss out the best way of doing things, then comparing this to what has actually been scheduled, then finding out the root of the issue, then recommending actions for the players in the contract..


As with many areas in the world today, this is now something that now may largely be done by software.



Since scheduling software is so common in the creation and distribution stage of the scheduling, just take an extra few minutes to run a quick review - before approval!


Take your own - or someone else’s - schedule and run it through one of the intelligent software on the market to show up issues and find where you might improve the schedule (and seek the best possible project delivery!)

Two options here are the Claim and Schedule Cracker software.


These take care of the vast majority of the process, of running the schedule through a number of metrics to detect issues or areas for improvement - and to give recommended actions on top of that.


That said, there is still a lot you might gain in hiring a specialized professional (in house or consultant) for this area of the scheduling process.

It might bear repeating that even minor delays to projects might cause millions of dollars in losses for contractor or owner, so this is absolutely necessary in construction.


Just think, would you want to go on a journey without checking your directions?


Naturally today we might use something like Google Maps to help us out - but if you can hear an expert opinion instead you might be very foolish to not take it!



Features of Schedule Analysis


As for some of the features of a Construction Schedule Analysis then here are just a few:



Determining Realistic Proposed Finish Dates


Confirming that deadlines are realistic is one of the most important parts of Construction Schedule Analysis.


Finding issues that may manifest and delay the project - before they happen!



Finding Project Risks


Perhaps this doesn’t need explaining, but it is important to have analyzed the schedule for the risk areas of the project, as well as having procedures in place for dealing with any that do materialize.



Managing Changes


Related to the above, just think how much of project profitability is made up of accurate and efficient use of time and resources.

It is crucial that we have a change system in place for how to avert harms and seek additional benefit during a project.


Schedule analyse may help with this also.



How to Analyse a Construction Schedule


Why spend so much time drawing up a schedule - the most efficient way of doing things - without checking if it’s any good.


That would be like me writing this article without running spell checking…


Except that millions of dollars might be wasted on construction if I don’t do it!


Take a few minutes and run your schedule through advanced tech, like these two, before you start to construct!



Thanks a lot for reading and take care,


Niall

The Project Cracker Team

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