Construction industry update
Practicing project management offers advantages greater than cutting costs and avoiding mistakes; it encourages organizations to rethink the way they operate and the measures they use to determine project value. This article examines how the highly competitive and very busy construction industry is benefiting from its embrace of project management as an approach to realizing buildings. In doing so, it discusses the flaws in the industry's traditional methods for constructing buildings and looks at those practices that the industry most uses, particularly scheduling and change management. It then looks at a project management process inspired by Toyota Motor Corporation, a delivery approach that focuses on maximizing value by minimizing waste and integrating best practices such as collaboration and holistic perception. It also explains the impending dilemma facing the industry: the need to transfer knowledge from the large aging, Baby Boomer workforce--before these individuals retire--to the rising generation of construction workers, both supervisors and laborers. It closes by looking at the changes now taking place in the industry as well as the problems that currently plague the industry. A timeline sidebar shows the evolution of tools to track project progress, starting in 1917 with the Gantt Chart and ending with 1999's Vision 2000.