Project fast tracking refers to using unusual, exceptional, and innovative practices to reduce project duration. Financial benefits originated from shorter investment payback period and earlier income generation are the main drivers to finish projects at the earliest possible time. Other reasons might be social, political, and legal. Companies are moving towards utilizing fast track techniques to their extreme and reducing the project duration to the minimum practically achievable, to take maximum advantage of the associated time saving.
Overlapping, crashing, overdesign, modularization, prefabrication, scope and design simplification, increasing workforce, early scope freeze, adjusting design to available material, single office execution and utilizing integrated project teams are examples of fast tracking techniques that when used properly, can shorten project duration. However, fast tracking is generally a difficult and often stressful route to follow, and its techniques are usually accompanied with side effects including additional risks, more changes, more rework, cost overrun and loss of quality. Therefore, they must be exercised knowledgeably and carefully.
Project fast tracking is a core competency within 3Targets as a result of years of research studies performed, and procedures and tools developed in this area by a number of our experts. This concept is generally less known to practitioners as a standalone service, and is not practiced systematically in most companies. However, extensive research and recent experience indicate companies can significantly benefit in both time and cost from incorporating fast tracking strategies, provided that they follow a structured and systematic approach. The objective of the 3Targets project fast tracking framework is to reduce the project duration with minimum costs, in such a way that the benefits of time saved outweigh all risks and costs.
3Targets’ project fast tracking framework is applied during project planning, execution, and monitoring phases:
- At the planning stage, fast tracking techniques applicable to the project and their areas of application are identified.
- A risk analysis and a cost-benefit evaluation are performed for each identified opportunity, to ensure the benefits are achievable.
- The selected opportunities are then planned, and personnel trained to implement the selected techniques smoothly during execution.
- Continuous follow-up, supervision and evaluation ensure the targeted time and cost results are being achieved: when necessary, corrective actions are suggested to keep the fast-tracked project on track.