Estimating the progress of projects

Shlomo Globerson*, Avraham Shtub

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


To control a project means to compare its original plan with its present status and to initiate corrective actions when needed. A major impediment to control is in estimating the status or progress of the project. Dividing a project into work packages is one way to simplify the planning and control process. During the project life cycle, many work packages are in progress at every single moment. Therefore, evaluating the portion of work completed in the in-progress work packages becomes a crucial issue. This article presents two approaches to evaluating in-progress work packages. The first is based on the concept of equivalent number of units (ENU). ENU is a physical measure of the completed amount of work content. This approach may be used when it is possible to identify a pattern of repetition within the project (such as in a batch project or a project with similar components). Projects like these contain repetitive elements. Therefore, a learning curve model is introduced as a tool for establishing a realistic plan for project progress. The second approach is relevant to projects with a relatively low pattern of internal repetition. In such projects, each work package is treated separately. However, most work packages have common milestones such as start, delivery, and customer approval. Percent of completion is assigned to each milestone, enabling us to estimate the amount of completed work. Use of the two approaches is demonstrated by examples.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)39-44
Number of pages6
JournalEMJ - Engineering Management Journal
Issue number3
StatePublished - Sep 1995


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