Hoover Dam, constructed between 1931 and 1936 during the great depression, was the first large government project where the Gantt Chart was utilized. What many people forget about, is that Francis Crowe, the chief engineer and superintendent of the company that oversaw the construction project, was that he was an organizational genius and one of the first to develop methods to manage a portfolio of projects and steering them to completion at the same time.
When we worked for the dam, there is was very specific need, a senior maintenance manager, who loved the dam, had worked at the dam for 30 years, was retiring in a couple of years. Specifically, this individual’s job while he remained, was to capture his years and experience into Microsoft Project plans that could be passed onto his team.
In addition, we worked on another business issue that was related to getting generators back on line by the maintenance department. At the dam they always finished projects on time because they had to. But they didn’t have good techniques for getting the most out of the cost associated with the increased labor it often took to get a schedule back on time. So, one of the things we worked on was building Microsoft Project simulations so they knew which critical path activities to focus on given a specific delay and what a given set of assignments and associated cost would have on the end date of a project. During one simulation, we applied an entire shift to a set of critical path tasks which represented a typical action taken in the past. When we went and looked at the impact of that new shift on the finish date, we had shorted the project by only four hours. Not of schedule gain for a lot of cost. Microsoft Project is a great tool for this type of analysis or simulation. http://ow.ly/i/nBSnI
HOOVER DAM Hoover Dam, constructed betwe