Article #387 Why a Contractor Must Submit a Narrative Schedule Report Along with the Integrated Project Schedule Submission on Capital Construction Projects?

Unlike other type of projects, the integrated baseline schedule for capital construction projects could include thousands of activities to detail the contractor’s strategy for delivering the project’s scope of work within the project’s milestone dates. The integrated project schedule (IPS) will include the activities needed for mobilization, submittals, procurement, permits, temporary on-site facilities, on-site activities for permanent scope of work, permitting authorities approvals, technical reviews and approvals, testing and commission, handover and closeout among others. The strategy for delivering capital construction projects might also require creating a phasing strategy defining the project’s zones and segments. In addition, the schedule needs to identify any constraints that could impose certain sequencing or approach in delivering the overall project’s scope of work. Further, assumptions made by the contractor to address specific unknowns that could have an impact on the project’s delivery strategy should be also identified and explained.

In other words, submitting 100 of pages of nicely organized and colored integrated project schedule could be very difficult to be understood by project stakeholders whose role is not a planning and scheduling engineer. Those stakeholders, and in particular the stakeholders from the project owner, project management consultant and supervision consultant entities, need to have a complete understanding of the strategy to be adopted by the contractor in delivering the capital construction project which is reflected in the integrated project schedule.

Using a Project Management Information System (PMIS) like PMWeb, the project owner can define a template that a contractor needs to use in preparing the integrated project schedule (IPS) baseline narrative report. PMWeb custom form builder will be used to create the fields for introduction, project overview, overall project plan, resource requirements, critical path description, WBS explanation, activity ID description and construction sequencing. In addition, the narrative report will include tables to capture the details of milestones, project segments or zones, constraint dates, assumptions made and list of calendars used.

For the PMWeb custom form tables where the values relate to specific activities in the integrated project schedule, the value for those activities will be picked from the integrated project schedule (IPS) submitted by the contractor and imported into PMWeb. Whether it was Primavera P6 or Microsoft Project, PMWeb schedule link module allows importing the integrated project schedule as well as all revisions and periodical updates using XML file format to eliminate any issues with the used scheduling application version. By selecting the relevant activity form the integrated project schedule, project stakeholders eliminate the high risk of being misinformed.

The attachment tab for the IPS narrative report will be used to attach all supportive documents that are relevant to the submitted schedule. For example, those could include the layout plans for the project segments or zones which will be basis for setting the strategy for sequencing the project schedule activities. In addition, those could include the critical path report, milestone schedule among other schedules that the contractor is required to provide. It is highly recommended that all those supportive documents to be uploaded and stored on PMWeb document repository. In addition, links to other transactions for the different project management cab be added as well as links to imported MS Outlook emails.

Since the Integrated project schedule (IPS) narrative report needs to be formally reviewed and approved by the project owner or his/her authorized representative, a workflow will be assigned to the form to map the sequence for the review and approval tasks. This will enable assigning the role to each review task and the duration of the task.

About the Authorfounder

Bassam Samman, PMP, PSP, EVP, GPM is a Senior Project Management Consultant with 40-year service record providing project management, project controls services and project management information system to over than 200 projects with a total value in excess of US $100 Billion. Those projects included Commercial, Residential, Education and Healthcare Buildings and Infrastructure, Entertainment, Hospitality and Shopping Malls, Oil and Gas Plants and Refineries, Telecommunication and Information Technology projects. He is thoroughly experienced in complete project management including project management control systems, computerized project control software, claims analysis/prevention, risk analysis/management (contingency planning), design, supervision, training and business development.

Bassam is a frequent speaker in topics relating to Project Management, Strategic Project Management and Project Management Personal Skills. Over the past 40 years he has lectured at more than 350 events and courses at different locations in the Middle East, North Africa, Europe and South America. He has written more than 300 articles on project management and project management information systems that were featured in international and regional magazines and newspapers. He is a co-founder of the Project Management Institute- Arabian Gulf Chapter (PMI-AGC) and has served on its board of directors for more than 6 years. He is a certified Project Management Professional (PMP) from the Project Management Institute (PMI), a certified Planning and Scheduling Professional (PSP) and Earned Value Professional (EVP) from the American Association of Cost Engineers (AACE) and Green Project Management (GPM).

Bassam holds a Masters in Engineering Administration (Construction Management) with Faculty Commendation, George Washington University, Washington, D.C., USA, Bachelor in Civil Engineering – Kuwait University, Kuwait and has attended many executive management programs at Harvard Business School, Boston, USA and London Business School, London, UK.


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