12.1 Consider a project to build a bridge over a river gorge. What are some of the resource constraints that would make this project challenging?
12.2 For many projects, the key resources to be managed are the project team personnel. Explain in what sense and how project team personnel are often the project’s critical resource.
12.3 What is the philosophy underlying resource loading? What does it do for our project? Why is it a critical element in effectively managing the project plan?
12.4 It has been argued that a project schedule that has not been resource-leveled is useless. Do you agree or disagree with this statement? Why or why not?
12.5 Discuss the nature of “time/cost trade-offs” on projects. What does this concept imply for our project management practices?
12.6 When resource-leveling a project, several heuristics can help us prioritize those activities that should receive resources first. Explain how each of the following heuristics works and give an example:
a. Activities with the smallest slack
b. Activities with the smallest duration
c. Activities with the lowest identification number
d. Activities with the most successor tasks
e. Activities requiring the most resources
12.7 Multitasking can have an important negative impact on your ability to resource-level a project. When team members are involved in multiple additional commitments, we must be careful not to assign their time too optimistically. In fact, it has been said: “Remember, 40 hours is not the same as one week’s work.” Comment on this idea. How does multitasking make it difficult to accurately resource-level a project?
12.8 Why is resource management significantly more difficult in a multi-project environment? What are some rules of thumb to help project managers better control resources across several simultaneous projects?
12.9 Consider a project Gantt chart with the following conditions (see Figure 12.22). Susan is your only programmer and she is responsible for Activities 3 and 4, which overlap. In resource-leveling the project so that Susan is only working a maximum of 8 hours each day, what would the new Gantt chart look like? What would be the new project completion date?
12.10 Referring to Figure 12.22, how would splitting Activity 3 on May 1 to complete Activity 4 and then finish Activity 3 affect the revised project completion date? Show your work. Do you recommend splitting Activity 3 or allowing Susan to first complete it and then perform Activity 4? Which strategy would allow the project to finish sooner? Why?
12.11 Refer to the Gantt chart in Figure 12.23. Bob and George are carpenters who have been scheduled to work on the construction of a new office building. Just before the start of the project, George is injured in an accident and cannot work this job, leaving Bob to handle his own activities as
well as George’s. Resource level this Gantt chart with Bob now responsible for Activities 3, 4, 6, and 7. What is the new projected completion date for the project?
12.12 Referring to Figure 12.23, because George is unavailable, suppose you have the opportunity to hire two new carpenters to perform George’s tasks (shortening them by 50%). What would be the new projected completion date for the project? Would it be worth it to you to hire two replacement carpenters instead of just one? Show your work. For Problems 12.13 to 12.17, consider a project with the following information:
Activity Duration Predecessors
A 3 —
B 5 A
C 7 A
D 3 B, C
E 5 B
F 4 D
G 2 C
H 5 E, F, G
Activity Duration ES EF LS LF Slack
A 3 0 3 0 3 —
B 5 3 8 5 10 2
C 7 3 10 3 10 —
D 3 10 13 10 13 —
E 5 8 13 12 17 4
F 4 13 17 13 17 —
G 2 10 12 15 17 5
H 5 17 22 17 22 —
A 3 weeks — 6 18
B 5 weeks 2 4 20
C 7 weeks — 4 28
D 3 weeks — 6 18
E 5 weeks 4 2 10
F 4 weeks — 4 16
G 2 weeks 5 3 6
H 5 weeks — 6 30
12.13 Construct the project activity network using AON methodology.
12.14 Identify the critical path and other paths through the network.
12.15 Create a time-phased resource-loading table for this project, identifying the activity’s early start and late finish points.
12.16 Assume that there is a maximum of eight resource hours per week available for the project. Can you identify any weeks that have resource over commitments?
12.17 Resource-level the loading table. Identify the activity that can be rescheduled and reconfigure the table to show this reallocation.
12.18 Consider the following partial resource-loading chart. Suppose that you can commit a maximum of eight resource hours per day.
a. What are the dates on which project resources are overallocated?
b. How should the resource-loading table be reconfigured to correct for this overallocation?
c. Now suppose that the maximum number of resource hours per day you can commit is reduced to six. How would you reconfigure the resource-loading table to adjust for this number? What would be the new project completion date?
12.19 Suppose you have the following information about Project Cross-Talk.
Activity Duration Predecessors
A 5 — Beth
B 5 A Sam
C 6 A Jenny
D 13 B, C Sam
E 6 B Jenny
F 4 D Frank
G 9 C Bill
H 2 E, F, G Kate Consider the project Gantt chart shown in Figure 12.24.
Identify the resource constraints in the network. Who are the resources who have been incorrectly (over) assigned? What evidence do you have to support this view?
a. Is Jenny really a resource bottleneck due to her assignment to Activities C and E? Why or why not (Hint: remember the slack in the project schedule)?
b. Suppose Bill quit the company at the start of the project and left you short-staffed, forcing you to have Jenny work on Activity G, in addition to her other assignments. How will adding Activity G to her
responsibilities affect the project completion date?
c. Suppose only Sam is capable to performing Activity G, in addition to his other current assignments. How will resource-leveling the project because of Sam and his resource conflicts affect the project completion date?
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