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Training Course

At the head office, we put together a suitable training course. It consisted of a 3-day classroom course/workshop on the techniques. Thereafter, there was a fortnight long hands-on session in a group refinery which happened to be working on a real-life shutdown plan, using an off-the-shelf software package. This hands-on session included all aspects of CPP, namely, task breakdown, estimation of resources, logical sequencing, preparing the network, leveling of resources, optimizing resources, and the critical path by using what-if scenarios. As the actual shutdown of this refinery was some time away, the exercise included mock progress reviews in order to practice updating of the plan. At the end of three weeks, the participants felt confident that they could do this in their own situation.


The results were impressive. We sent a seasoned planner to help them during the planning effort as a confidence-building measure. The plan was completed on time and put into practice. Once the shutdown commenced, the outside planner visited the site for a few days to review the actual progress monitoring and plan updating. For the first time in their history, the shutdown was executed in accordance with a live and dynamic plan with daily progress monitoring and plan updating. A senior manager commented that the ownership of the plan and, indeed, for the entire shutdown exercise was such as never witnessed before—both in their own staff as well as those of the contractors.

The shutdown was completed in record time, 25 days instead of the historical 30, and at a considerably lower cost than originally planned.

Critical Path Planning with daily progress monitoring and updating has now become an essential feature of the shutdown and major projects work of this group of companies.

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