The initial key advantage is that toolkit enables me to interact with the programme without planning software and in excel. Within just a few clicks, I can open the planning software file into excel and immediately customise what work breakdown structure level I want to the view. The programme is then shown in a fully customisable view where I can change colour schemes add grid lines and set the date scale to my desired requirements.
In addition to selecting a work breakdown level to view, Schedule Toolkit enables me to quickly generate a look-ahead programme to pre-defined or user dates. To supplement the viewing tool, I can select any predefined activity code such as discipline, resources or location to further define the desired programme view.
The advantage of the programme in excel is that I can completely annotate the programme personalising to suit the audience which has proven to be a great success with the workforce understanding the programme.
A key benefit is in communication and management of subcontractors. They don’t generally have specialist software and Toolkit enables me to simply share the programme parameters to the contractor in excel. They can then add activities, notes and resources making communication hassle free and efficient. During the project lifecycle I can simple open the updated programme, and check for movements from the last period so I am fully integrated with the main programme.
A further benefit of Toolkit is the “Progress Input” where I can add actual progress dates and percentage complete against the programme activities in excel and simply share and send this to the planner to update the master programme. I can then use the updated programme to plan and manage future works.
In addition I now have direct access to resources, quantities and allowances loaded within the programme. I can therefore create resource histograms, instantly to efficiently manage my section of works against the original contract resource and allowances. The extraction of planned quantities is invaluable to the monitoring of material usage and managing waste.
An important function of Toolkit is the ability to add my own activities within the programme to manage the day to day running of the project whilst still maintaining the master programme high level periods to work within. Schedule Toolkit also allows me to create a schedule on a blank sheet to a consistent format and communicate simply through excel.
To encapsulate my personal outputs and views, the Toolkit enables me to save templates so that numerous programmes can be open into a pre-defined view. I can also send this view to others so that a consistent view can be seen to my communication circle.