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CCPM uses buffer consumption and the rate of buffer consumption (percentage of buffer consumed versus percentage of critical chain complete) as the primary, realtime, predictive measurement tools. You should consider both clients and project-team members as customers of your project-reporting-and-control system. Since buffer reporting must be timely to be effective, you should status and report buffers daily and ensure that the information is immediately available to all users. The most important items in this chapter include the following:

1. Daily buffer monitoring and reporting provides a proactive, real-time decision tool for project control. Task managers use the information to decide which task to work on next. Project mangers use the information to decide when to take action on a project. Resource managers use the information for longer-term resource decisions.

2. Focused project meetings, using previously statused schedules, are a powerful tool to move your project to successful completion.

3. Buffer-recovery planning and execution are essential parts of the CCPM control process.

4. If cost is important to your project, you can use the buffer and earned value (BCWP) to derive cost-buffer penetration, but do not attempt to use earned value for schedule control.

5. CCPM puts a premium on project-quality management.

6. Conventional project-change-control methods are necessary to handle scope changes and the impacts of special-cause variation.

CCPM users are finding implementation of buffer management to be relatively simple and a very effective overall approach to project management and control.


[1] Juran, Joseph J., Juran on Planning for Quality, New York: The Free Press, 1988.

[2] Goldratt, Eliyahu M., The Haystack Syndrome, Croton-on Hudson, NY: North River Press, 1990.

[3] Herroelen, W., R. Leus, and E. Demeulemeester, "Critical Chain Project Scheduling: Do Not Oversimplify." Project Management Journal, Vol. 33, No. 4, December 2002, pp. 48-60.

[4] CCPM+ Software, available at (accessed June 2004).

[5] Concerto Software, available at (accessed June 2004).

[6] Shewhart, Walter A., Statistical Method from the Viewpoint of Quality Control, New York: Dover Publications, 1986 (originally published in 1939).

[7] PMI, A Guide to the Project Management Body of Knowledge, Upper Darby, PA: PMI, 2000.

[8] Ireland, Lewis R., Quality Management for Projects and Programs, Upper Darby, PA: PMI, 1991.

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Project Management Made Easy

Project Management Made Easy

What you need to know about… Project Management Made Easy! Project management consists of more than just a large building project and can encompass small projects as well. No matter what the size of your project, you need to have some sort of project management. How you manage your project has everything to do with its outcome.

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