Last Planner System

Build Your Career at This Weekend's Construction Jobs Expo
8 January 2024
Est. Reading: 2 minutes

The Last Planner System (LPS) is a production planning and control system designed for the construction industry. It is a collaborative approach that aims to improve the efficiency and reliability of construction project delivery by involving all stakeholders in the planning and execution processes. The Last Planner System was developed by Glenn Ballard and Greg Howell and draws on principles of lean construction and project management.

Last Planner System

  1. Collaborative Planning:
    • The Last Planner System emphasizes collaboration among various project stakeholders, including owners, architects, contractors, subcontractors, and suppliers. It encourages open communication and the sharing of information to improve overall project understanding.
  2. Pull Planning:
    • Unlike traditional "push" planning methods where schedules are imposed from the top down, the Last Planner System adopts a "pull" approach. It involves those closest to the work in the planning process, allowing them to pull work as they are ready, based on realistic and achievable commitments.
  3. Phase Planning:
    • The planning process is organized into different phases, with each phase focusing on a specific aspect of the project. This includes milestone planning, phase pull planning, weekly work planning, and daily huddle sessions.
  4. Milestone Planning:
    • Milestone planning involves identifying critical project milestones and establishing target dates for their completion. This provides a clear timeline for the project and helps in tracking progress.
  5. Phase Pull Planning:
    • In this phase, the project team collaboratively plans the work that needs to be completed in the upcoming weeks or months. The focus is on creating reliable commitments and identifying potential constraints that may impact the schedule.
  6. Weekly Work Planning:
    • Weekly work planning involves breaking down the phase plans into more detailed weekly plans. Teams discuss and commit to the work that can realistically be accomplished in the coming week.
  7. Daily Huddle Sessions:
    • Daily huddle sessions are short, focused meetings where team members discuss progress, address any issues or obstacles, and make adjustments to the plan if necessary. These sessions promote real-time communication and problem-solving.
  8. Learning and Continuous Improvement:
    • The Last Planner System encourages a culture of continuous improvement. Teams regularly review their performance, identify areas for improvement, and implement changes in subsequent planning cycles.
  9. Visual Management:
    • Visual management tools, such as big visible boards, are often used in conjunction with the Last Planner System. These tools make it easy for teams to visualize the project schedule, identify dependencies, and track progress.

By involving the entire project team in the planning and execution processes, the Last Planner System aims to enhance collaboration, increase reliability in project delivery, reduce delays, and improve overall project performance in the construction industry.

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