Last Planner – Making Better Plans

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The goal of the Last Planner System (LPS) is to have the right planning conversations with the right people at the right time – creating a cohesive and reliable plan for delivery.

This process is broken down into the following steps for execution by the last planners of the project:

Step 1: Master Milestone Plan
Step 2: Pull Plan
Step 3: Create 6 week look ahead plan (Make-Ready Planning)
Step 4: Create Weekly Work Plan (WWP)
Step 5: Daily Standup

Last Planner Systems use the conversations with trades to build effective relationships between each other and reduce waiting or lost time. When the conversations continue with all parties and the team as a whole is informed to when events are happening, everyone knows when their tasks are ready to start or if delays are incurred. By empowering the Last Planners, you have the right people making decisions based on their knowledge of the work and constraints of the field. The empowerment of field staff not only increases effective planning of tasks, but delivers bad news early – it becomes visible when a task is running behind schedule when broken down into small measurable, definable tasks and updates are coming straight from the source.

PERFECT TIMING

Collaborative short term planning creates perfect timing to solve constraints early and works towards eliminating firefighting drills on a project.

This perfect timing stems from 5 key conversations;

1. Collaborative Programming

2. Make Ready Look Ahead free of constraints

3. Production planning from day to week

4. Production Management monitoring activities to stay on task

5. Measuring, learning and Continuous Improvement.

KEEPING UP WEEK TO WEEK…

Sometimes it seems like keeping up is the hardest part. Last Planner System is designed to manage program upkeep to a sustainable weekly activity level. Tips for staying on top of your Activities:

  1. Always status Yesterday’s work.
  2. Imagine you leave dishes in the sink for the whole week, and now it takes you an hour to clear them out and the sink needs to be scrubbed and there’s a funky smell in the garbage disposal. Had you cleared the sink daily after every meal, it would take a few minutes a day and save a lot of excess work at the end of the week. It’s the EXACT same way with Last Planner System.
  3. KNOW Your Scope and Needs.
  4. Arriving at the Daily Huddle or WWP Session knowing what you have coming up and what you need from others will expedite the conversation. And of course if you don’t know… that is O.K.

I DON’T KNOW…

Sometimes this is the BEST thing you can say (believe it or not). If you and your team can admit when you don’t know an answer, it allows others to step in and help. We are a team and we function as a team. Knowing what you don’t know empowers you to create a plan to solve it. Holding this information to yourself sets you up to fail in silence and potentially impact the entire project. Speak up! Be fearless, and continue the collaboration with us by presenting honest and timely information.

STAY ON TOP OF YOUR TASKS!

If you complete a task, mark it.

If you miss a promise date, mark it.

When new tasks arise or backlog is completed, mark it.

A major key to successful Last Planner system is perpetual updates (5-10 minutes a day) to help prevent excess meeting lengths and the need for remediation planning. The better maintained WWP and 6WLA is the shorter our planning sessions can be.

COMMUNICATE EARLY! COMMUNICATE OFTEN!

In a collaborative environment, we are only as effective as our weakest line of communication. If you have a constraint, concern, or SUCCESS (!) please communicate to the team as early as possible. Even when work is completing early, communication to the team is critical so the next task can be initiated without delay. Communicate early and often.

It’s hard to say too much… the more information we have the better we can plan.

 

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