Risks are potential threats or opportunities for the project that are anticipated and documented as part of the planning process. Issues, on the other hand, are unanticipated events, e.g. a realized threat, in a project that either requires action or visibility. Primavera P6 Professional has features to support the monitoring of issues from discovery to resolution.
Regardless of how well risks were analyzed prior to project commencement, unanticipated issues inevitably arise on projects. These issues may come from realized threats but more often from non-predictable situations. Primavera P6 Professional has a way of documenting and monitoring an issue at all phases from identification to resolution.
This article provides a brief introduction to Primavera P6 Professional’s issue log features. It does not address issues arising from exceeding project thresholds. This is a feature that can generate Issues based upon the project exceed predefined thresholds in the schedule. This is a topic for another article.
We have in Figure 1 our demonstration project.
This is a trench excavation and pipe installation project. Everything was going according to plan on this project until a large boulder was discovered during excavation of the trench. The excavation of this boulder created a real issue that had the potential to delay trench excavation for days. Not good!
The boulder excavation and potential trench excavation delays required upper management stakeholder notification and immediate action. The boulder excavation requires acquisition of a backhoe ramrod attachment to breakup and dislodge the boulder. Again, this excavation issue required both stakeholder notification and immediate action.
In Primavera P6 Professional it is possible to create an issue log for stakeholder notification and to support monitoring actions taken to resolve the issue. In Figure 2 we select the issues feature in the project tool group.
In the project issues general tab we enter the following pertinent issue related information: issue name, responsible manager, date identified, identified by, status, priority, and resolution date.
In Figure 3 we enter issue details.
Note our excavation of boulder issue was not the result of exceeding a threshold, so the threshold values are null. The issue does apply to the Excavate Trench work breakdown structure (WBS) element. It affects the Backhoe equipment resource. It also applies to Activity ID W1040, Backhoe Trench Excavation.
In the Notes tab, Figure 4, we provide a detailed explanation of the issue and possible solution: “huge boulder discovered during excavation requires ramrod backhoe attachment”.
We continue to monitor the issue until closed and provided a resolution date. We are able to keep up to date on this issue and all other project related issues using the filter feature in the project issues tab, Figure 5.
As displayed in Figure 5 we have a number of filters to support monitoring all project related issues at all levels of resolution.
Large projects may have many issues arise during the execution of the schedule. Primavera P6 Professional supports monitoring all project related issues at all phases of resolution. This provides you with a good history of the project and the kind of challenges you may possibly face on future projects. What was an issue on one project may become part of your risk analysis process on future projects.