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The Resource allocation capabilities of commercial construction project management software for the resource leveling problem /

Rezvan Khah, Emad
Critical path method (CPM) has been commonly used for scheduling of construction projects. However, CPM only considers the relations between the activities, but does not optimize the resource allocation. Resource leveling problem (RLP) concentrates on optimizing resource utilization histograms obtained by Critical Path Method (CPM) without changing the project duration. Resource leveling is crucial for effective use of construction resources particularly, manpower and machinery resources to minimize the project costs. The main objective of this thesis is to evaluate the resource leveling capabilities of commercial project management software packages including Microsoft Project Professional 2013, Primavera P6 Professional R.8.3 and ASTA Powerproject V.12.5 which are being commonly used for scheduling of construction projects. For this purpose an extensive problem set consisting of 640 instances including up to 500 activities and 15 resources were generated. Three different heuristics with thirteen leveling priorities of project management software packages were included in the performance evaluation. The results of the heuristics of software packages were compared with the results of a shifting leveling heuristic which is commonly cited in the literature. Comparison revealed the limitations of recent project management software packages for the RLP. The results also provide guidance on selection of the adequate leveling heuristic for different type of construction projects