||Optimization of resource cost based on availability
||Project management software packages carry out resources planning on the basis that theallocation of any scarce resource is constrained by two levels of availability: the NormalAvailability and the Total or Maximum Availability. Giving the usual interpretation to thesetwo levels of availability, two types of inaccuracies can be detected in the resource costcomputations. Firstly, the cost of unused resources below the normal availability is ignored.Secondly, the resources in excess of the normal availability are provided at the same unit costas those within the normal avaialability. The software packages such as Hornet ProjectManagement report identical resource costs irrespective of the chosen levels of normal andtotal availabilities because of these inaccuracies. Thus, the planner lacks an appropriatecriterion for selecting the optimum levels of resource availability. The task of finding theoptimum levels would be an operational research problem, the solution of which may not beeasy to obtain. This paper describes a method that enables the planner to compute the realresource cost after eliminating the errors and to select the two levels such that the real cost isa minimum, The optimization process is carried out within the environment using a programcompiled in the language of the software. The application of the method is illustrated withthe resource planning for a construction project of 30 activities using the Hornet projectmanagement software. The variation of the real cost with the total availability indicates theexistence of two distinct minimum cost solutions - one corresponding to a time-limitedresource levelling schedule of the unlimited resources situation and the other to a resourcescheduling schedule under a limited resources situation. The real cost is a minimum for aspecific value of normal availability for the two optimum total availability values. Anarbitrary choice of the norrnal and total availability levels could lead to the real cost beinghigher by amounts varying between 10 and 30 percent.
|Year of publication:
Shanmuganayagam V (1993).
Optimization of resource cost based on availability. Mathur K S, Betts M P, Tham K W (ed.); Pre-proceedings of the first international conference on the management of information technology for construction; Singapore, August 1993 (ISSN: 2706-6568),