Importing P6 Schedules with Actualized Tasks into ALICE

P6 schedules with actualized tasks can be imported into ALICE Core, and the retained logic approach is used to respect precedence relationships. With this functionality, many exciting and high value use-cases are now supported. For example, users can:

  • Import a project in preconstruction with some completed work and simulate, optioneer or optimize all future work
  • Import a project in execution and determine how to respond to a change such as a milestone delay or a design change
  • Import a delayed project and use ALICE to explore recovery scenarios

In all of the above cases, the ALICE resource optimization and scheduling algorithm will intelligently operate only on the work not yet done. Read on to learn more about the technical fundamentals and things to keep in mind when importing a schedule that includes actualized tasks. 

 

Imported Fields

As part of the import, ALICE will identify:

  • Task status: not started, in progress, complete
  • Actual start and actual finish dates
  • Suspend and resume dates
  • Data date

These data points are taken into account by the ALICE scheduling and optimization algorithm as detailed below.

Handling of complete, in-progress and not started tasks

  • Imported tasks that have an “actual start” or “actual finish” value, or have the task status “Complete” are considered as actualized tasks in ALICE. 
  • If an imported task has both planned and actual dates, ALICE will use only the actual dates when scheduling that task, and will disregard the planned dates.
  • Imported tasks with no actual dates will be scheduled using the imported planned dates.
  • ALICE will indicate whether actual or planned dates are utilized.

Out-of-sequence work

For many valid reasons, tasks in a schedule may start, complete or be suspended without conforming to their precedence logic. When this occurs, a task will appear as "split" in the gantt view.

In these instances, ALICE Core uses the retained logic approach to respecting precedence relationships between tasks. If a task has been started, completed or suspended out-of-sequence, any remaining work will be scheduled in conformance with the precedence logic for that task.

 



Suspend and resume values

ALICE Core's implementation of retained logic also fully supports suspend and resume values. ALICE respects these values when it generates new schedules for customers.

  • If a task has Suspend and/or Resume values, they will appear as read-only on the Plan page.
  • For scheduling purposes, the actual end of the completed part is either the Data Date or the Suspend date.
  • If a Resume date is available, the Early Start value needs to be on or after the Resume date.
  • You can hover over the task in the plan page to see the Suspend or Resume dates, if they exist

Resource Assignment and Scheduling for Schedules with Actualized Work

The ALICE scheduling and resource allocation algorithm operates on work that has not yet happened - this includes tasks not yet started, or the incomplete portion of in-progress tasks. 

  • ALICE will not assign equipment, material, or crews to work that has been completed.
  • Similarly, on the Explore page, completed milestones will not appear as available for optioneering.

 

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: With actualized task support, does this mean I can use ALICE to manage my projects in execution?

A: With this feature, you can be confident that ALICE won’t unrealistically schedule or assign resources to work that is already in the past, and that your precedence logic will be respected. This opens up many exciting applications on projects in progress - especially projects at risk of delay and in need of recovery, or projects with change orders that impact the schedule. With that said, we are actively building additional features to better support the needs of projects in execution. Reach out if you would like to share your requests with our product development team.

 

Q: What is retained logic?

A: Here’s a link to an explainer we find helpful.

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