Project management: a simulation-based optimization method for dynamic time-cost tradeoff decisions

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Title: Project management: a simulation-based optimization method for dynamic time-cost tradeoff decisions
Author: Tolentino Pena, Radhamés A.
Abstract: Project managers face difficult decisions with regard to completing projects on time and within the project budget. A successful project manager not only needs to assure that the project is completed, but also desires to make optimal use of resources and maximize the profitability of the project. The goal of this research is to address the time-cost tradeoff problem associated with selecting from among project activity alternatives under uncertainty. Specifically, activities that make up a project may have several alternatives each with an associated cost and stochastic duration. The final project cost is a result of the time and cost required to complete each activity and lateness penalties that may be assessed if the project is not completed by the specified completion time. In an effort to optimize the project time-cost tradeoff, a dynamic, simulation-based optimization method is presented. In particular, the method minimizes the expected project cost due to lateness penalties and the activity alternatives selected. The method is designed to be implemented in two phases. The first phase, referred to as the static phase, is implemented prior to the start of the project. The static phase results in the expected cost for the recommended project configuration including the alternative selected for each activity and the distributions of the project completion and total project cost. The second phase, referred to as the dynamic phase, is implemented as the project progresses. The dynamic phase allows the project manager to reevaluate the remaining project and activity alternatives to dynamically minimize the expected total project cost. The method provides an optimal solution under the assumptions of traditional crashing implementations and a heuristic solution for the generalized problem. An experimental performance evaluation shows the effectiveness of the method for making project management decisions. Finally, the method is fully implemented in computer software and integrated into a commercially available project management tool.
Record URI: http://hdl.handle.net/1850/8081
Date: 2009-01

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DSA.exe 598.0Kb Unknown View/Open Supplemental File
DSA Project Example.mpp 399.3Kb Microsoft Project View/Open DSA Project Example Supplemental File
DSA-Simulator.exe 206.3Kb Unknown View/Open Supplemental File
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OTCM Project Example.mpp 377.8Kb Microsoft Project View/Open Supplemental File
OTCM-Simulator.exe 161.2Kb Unknown View/Open Supplemental File
OTCM Template.mpt 203.2Kb Unknown View/Open Supplemental File
TRadhamesThesis01-2009.pdf 2.023Mb PDF View/Open

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