Generalized Analysis of Value Behavior over Time as a Project Performance Predictor

By Bob Prieto


As projects have grown more complex our performance analysis frameworks have remained largely unchanged even as newer more powerful tools have become available to manage and manipulate large volumes of data. Newer analytical tools provide deeper insights into existing data sets especially from a statistical point of view but we continue to use traditional project metrics to assess project performance on both a retrospective as well as prospective basis.

Whether our measure of project achievement is cost, schedule, physical % complete, risk or manhours we look at a relatively common set of “achievement” metrics that include absolute values (datum); changes in those values (progress) and their rate of change (progress rate). In limited instances we consider changes in the rate of progress (ramp rate) but do not more broadly analyze this throughout the project.

Higher order performance measures that look at disruption and overall efficiency of delivery are not typically considered.

The analog for each of these achievement metrics can be seen in the following table.

In this paper we will consider some potential index type metrics to help evaluate the level of potential “disruption” that exist in a project plan or is subsequently realized. In addition we will look at how the various “disruptions” combine to impact the overall efficiency of the project. These indices correspond to third and fourth order derivatives, jerk and snap, in a spatial context and are subjects of one or more patents pending.


To read entire paper (click here)

About the Author

Bob Prieto


Bob Prieto is a senior vice president of Fluor, one of the largest, publicly traded engineering and construction companies in the world. He is responsible for strategy for the firm’s Industrial & Infrastructure group which focuses on the development and delivery of large, complex projects worldwide. The group encompasses three major business lines including Infrastructure, with an emphasis on Public Private Partnerships; Mining; and Manufacturing and Life Sciences. Bob consults with owner’s of large engineering & construction capital construction programs across all market sectors in the development of programmatic delivery strategies encompassing planning, engineering, procurement, construction and financing. He is author of “Strategic Program Management” and “The Giga Factor: Program Management in the Engineering and Construction Industry” published by the Construction Management Association of America (CMAA) and “Topics in Strategic Program Management” as well as over 400 other papers and presentations.

Bob’s industry involvement includes recent and ongoing roles on the National Infrastructure Advisory Council’s Critical Infrastructure Resiliency Workgroup and the National Academy Committee “Toward Sustainable Critical Infrastructure Systems: Framing the Challenges”. He is a member of the ASCE Industry Leaders Council, National Academy of Construction and a Fellow of the Construction Management Association of America. Bob served until 2006 as one of three U.S. presidential appointees to the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Business Advisory Council (ABAC), working with U.S. and Asia-Pacific business leaders to shape the framework for trade and economic growth and had previously served as both as Chairman of the Engineering and Construction Governors of the World Economic Forum and co-chair of the infrastructure task force formed after September 11th by the New York City Chamber of Commerce.

Previously, as a senior industry executive, he established a 20-year record of building and sustaining global revenue and earnings growth.  As Chairman at Parsons Brinckerhoff (PB), one of the world’s leading engineering companies, Bob shaped business strategy and led its execution.  Bob Prieto can be contacted at [email protected].