It is vital that Last Planners work each week from current 6-week make ready plans. For project teams using P6 or MS Project to document and progress their phase plans, a common concern is the amount of work the update requires each week to produce a 6-week look ahead make ready plan. Here are a few tips.
- Make sure that you have a solid phase plan, informed by reliable commitments. There should be little need to make large adjustments to plan activities if the phase planning resulted in establishing a balanced sequence of work progressing at a steady rate, and the make ready work is anticipated correctly.
- Turn off the feature highlighting the critical path in red. All plan commitments are important and need to be reliable, not just those the software reports as critical.
- Don’t bother with updating the percent complete for each of the task activities, especially if this results in shifting the dates of future activities incorrectly if you don’t accurately estimate the percent complete for in-progress activities. If work is to the left of the current date it should be understood as complete. If it helps, you can use the activity bar formatting tool to color complete activities blue.
- It may be best to not even bother with updating the Data Date. Instead, on the PDF version of the plan you issue to Last Planners draw a vertical line indicating the beginning of the next planning week, Week 1 in the six-week look ahead make ready plan, and a second vertical line indicating the end of Week 6.
- As an advanced practice, use the activity bar formatting tool to indicate whether upcoming work is ready or has constraints. Start with the assumption that all activities have constraints until Last Planners report they are constraint free and ready. Use red to indicate constrained work and green to indicate ready work.