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Strategy Delivery and Commissioning

77.4. Schedule Management in the Construction Phase

It is crucial that the government is aware, at all relevant times, of the development and progress of the project. The most efficient way to ensure that this is done under the circumstances is by requiring the private partner to liaise with the government on a regular basis and report on progress against the construction schedule. The reporting should include information on the progress of the works, notice of any anticipated delays, the program for managing any delays, and other issues of importance during construction.

7.4.1. Importance of Schedule Management

Schedule or time management is the responsibility of the private partner and is the domain of professionals on PPP projects. It is of significant importance to government. In some PPPs, the government will depend on the completion date for a scheduled move-in. For example, the schedule for an office accommodation may have been set to enable the government to move out of an existing building before the existing lease expires. If the schedule for the PPP is not well managed, and there is a delay without sufficient notice being provided to the government, the government might find itself without a “home”.

Poor schedule management also creates political and reputational risks for the government. For example, an important national event may depend on the timely completion of infrastructure surrounding the event itself. The government must therefore recognize that schedule management is integral to commissioning and constructing an asset, as it might affect complete project delivery and even budgetary planning in cases where capital is partly funded by the government.

7.4.2. Processes Required to Manage the Timely Completion of the Project

Monitoring of the project is essential to ensure that the project is completed within the prescribed target date.

An example of insufficient monitoring of the project schedule can be seen through Performance Audit Report No. 3 of 2014 of Union Government (Railways). Indian Railways executed eight PPP projects in collaboration with private partners. The audit examined four of these projects. The provisions contained in the concession agreements required the private partners to report annually to the government on their performance under the agreements. In addition, the concession agreements provided for the formation of Construction Progress Review Boards (CPRBs) consisting of representatives of the main stakeholders.

The CPRBs were expected to review progress on the projects on a monthly basis, producing monthly reports and issuing necessary instructions or taking corrective measures for timely completion of the projects. The audit observed that though monthly progress reports were being prepared, there were no records confirming the fact that the progress of the projects was being monitored by the CPRBs. The role of the procuring authority for monitoring the performance of projects was not laid down in any of the concession agreements.[21]

Table 7.7 outlines the activities that need to take place when dealing with the PPP project schedule. It is important for the government to understand these steps in order to monitor the progress and implement any further actions should it not be completed in time.


TABLE 7.7: Processes to Follow when Dealing with Schedule Management

Key Activity


Baseline schedule

The baseline schedule is prepared by the contractor according to the requirements of the contract. Typically, the government retains the right to review the baseline schedule for coordination and monitoring purposes. It is used to identify the project critical path and near critical paths that, if delayed, would result in overall delays to project completion.


The baseline schedule is adjusted to incorporate schedule changes for approved change orders and time extensions. Should the contractor propose any other changes to the baseline schedule, the contractor must obtain the government’s approval.


For major changes in the sequences, durations, and relationships of critical or near critical activities, or for the adjustment of delivery dates for major equipment items, the contractor will prepare a schedule revision meeting for all contract requirements. The revised schedule is used for coordination and monitoring purposes in place of the baseline schedule.

Schedule management

Schedule management requires the active involvement of all project participants to remain informed about the status of the project and any delays that may impact schedule performance. The contractor is primarily responsible for organizing and managing the work of the project. As a result, the contractor’s schedule management procedures must be shared with and communicated to all project participants.


Should delays occur either to critical path activities or otherwise, the contractor needs to develop alternative work sequences with input from the affected sub-contractors, suppliers, and equipment vendors. Schedule management is essential to ensure that the contractor delivers the project within the approved time and budget.


A Schedule Management Plan should contain all of the following major elements.

· Baseline Schedule Development and Approval.

· Schedule Analysis and Coordination.

· Schedule Changes and Revisions.

· Schedule Delay Mitigation Planning.

Schedule management of scope changes

Schedule management of scope changes concerns the planning, scheduling, and approval of schedule related changes, which result from the change control process. The primary objectives of managing schedule changes are as follows.

· Document the direct and indirect effects of scope changes to the project schedule.

· Analyze the costs of schedule impacts.

· Communicate schedule and cost impacts to project participants.

7.4.3. Ensuring the Schedule Accurately Reflects Progress

Ensuring the schedule accurately reflects progress, and is updated to reflect delays or changes, is critical because tasks are mutually interdependent and delays can increase costs. Project planning can establish the overall schedule and should specify when particular tasks must be completed. A good technique is to establish milestones that are easily observed and verified. Although PPP contracts do not require that the government updates the schedule, it must be informed by the private partner of any changes that might impact the milestones or the critical path for delivery of the project.

7.4.4. Approval of Schedule Milestones

Approval of the schedule milestones is usually done by the independent certifier (section 0 above) who will issue works completion, practical completion, and final completion certificates.


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