HHM has an overview of the construction site

Planning with cyclograms simply makes more sense

A significantly increasing number of project and site managers are using location-based (time) scheduling with production cyclograms instead of Gantt.

The project manager at HHM, Thomas Høyer Andersen, has been working for 10 years on location-based scheduling/planning with cyclograms. First at MT Højgaard in collaboration with, for example, Kristine Ann Barnes, later at NCC and now at HHM Entreprise.

According to Thomas, Gantt just does not make sense if you once tried to plan using cyclograms. He tells:

“It’s possible to plan with Gantt, of course it does, and a few educational institutions in Denmark still insist on teaching them, even though all the major educational institutions have been deviating from the method for a few years. And you do get to work with it. It’s also possible to pull a big wooden box without wheels over a courtyard, of course it does, but with 4 wheels it’s just a lot easier… ”

According to Thomas, it’s not an exaggeration to compare the two things. If you have experienced the synopsis with cyclograms, you do not go back to Gantt. That just does not make sense.

  • Firm: HHM
  • Web: www.hhm.dk
  • Industry: Building Contractors
  • Size: 200 employees
  • Why Vico Office?
    • Exploitation of the available space of the construction site
    • Good conditions for the artisans
    • Manage deliveries

Once you have experienced the overview in cyclograms, you do not go back to Gantt. That just does not make sense.

– Thomas Høyer Andersen, Project Manager, HHM

Optimizes the schedule by 2 months

Anders tells:

“With traditional planning methods like Gantt, it’s impossible to get an overview of all the activities – on larger construction projects, a good schedule quickly fills over 3,000 activities on 10-15 A3 sheets, and it’s very difficult to keep track of such a schedule. ”

When I ask why cyclograms are better suited for planning than Gantt, Thomas brings an example. In connection with a large housing project, he was asked to take responsibility for a schedule after the first stage was completed. Stage 1 was marked by violent conflicts and major delays. At the beginning of Stage 2 Thomas takes over the Gantt’s schedule.

“Working with a colleague, I converted the Gantt schedule to cyclograms and immediately saw many challenges – many sites are characterized by conflicting work – multiple units at the same time and in the same place – while other locations are empty for a long time.”

With an overview of the challenges on the schedule, Thomas and his colleague begin to optimize it. They ensure that no one works at the same time in the same place and that all areas of the construction site are optimally utilized. No areas of the construction site remain unused for a long time. In this way they reduce the schedule by 2 months, in a single afternoon.

Thomas emphasizes that this story is not a criticism of Level 1 planners, but merely an expression of how difficult it is to monitor a large Gantt schedule.


If an activity is scheduled at a specific location using a cyclogram, that location is reserved for that activity. This gives the craftsmen freedom to do their job.

– Thomas Høyer Andersen, Project Manager, HHM

The craftsmen can hardly believe their luck

The craftsmen are very happy about the new way of planning. It helps to keep a good chord. Above all, because the planning is distributed by location and the foremen participate in the detail-planning meeting themselves, they can adhere to the schedule. Thomas says:

“Individual craftsmen get peace and freedom for their work in the place in question – they themselves have set the pace at the planning meeting. The carpenter knows he has to work on the second floor on Wednesday, and he has to finish here by Thursday morning, because the mason is coming. But he also knows that other craftsmen will not disturb him all Wednesday long. He keeps his chord and I do not get any extra bills.

At the same time, I also avoid the daily hassles between the craftsmen who otherwise have to fight for the place or have to work where there is room. If an activity is scheduled at a specific location using a cyclogram, that location is reserved for that activity. This gives the craftsmen the peace of mind to do their job properly. ”

Since I have planned the schedule by location, I know exactly when the carpenters are ready to install windows in the entrance area of ​​Building 5. We have therefore – long ago – ordered the delivery of the windows for the marked zone 5.1.

– Thomas Høyer Andersen, Project Manager, HHM

Control of deliveries

On most construction sites, there are major challenges in handling deliveries. If the deliveries are ordered and delivered on time, you are searching for them forever. When they are finally found, more time is needed to transport them to the right area of ​​the construction site. Thomas had to face these challenges earlier. To avoid wasting time and delays is only on of the reasons he now uses this method of delivery management.

First, he creates a good “cycle” so that certain deliveries are always delivered on fixed days. For example, kitchens are always delivered on Thursdays. At the same time he divides the construction site into many small zones.

In the Vico Schedule Planner, he subdivides both buildings/houses and construction sites into zones. In the program, he then almost automatically receives all quantities by locations/zones.

He has created a detailed delivery schedule in the program. He knows the place/zone and he knows the exact time of the beginning of the assembly. Then he orders the deliveries the day before for delivery. The suppliers know the system and Thomas has not experienced any delays since then.

Thomas gives an example:

“Zone 5.1, for example, the first staircase in building 5. To zone 5.1, 10 windows of type A have to be delivered . As I planned the schedule by locations, I know exactly at what time the carpenters can mount the windows in the 1st staircase in building 5. We have therefore – a long time ago – arranged the delivery of the windows, referred to as zone 5.1. And we have ordered for delivery in the delivery area of ​​zone 5.”

You can look to the future

Thomas also uses the tracking part of the tool. He inputs the work actually done and makes the program generate a forecast/prediction. If a subcontractor is in delay, he can see with the forecast how other subcontractors are affected by this delay, and ultimately the consequence for the whole project’s end date. You can not see that in Gantt. Thomas gives an example:

“At line 1500, you see a delay in a contractor, 500 lines down, you can see which subcontractor is affected by the delay. That is totally impossible to survey. My current schedule contains about 3,000 activities, so I have no chance to overlook it with Gantt. With the cyclograms, I immediately get a visual representation of the consequences. I take such an illustration with me during planning sessions. It fills one A3 sheet.”

The following figure shows a schedule that Thomas created for an earlier project. Here he can view 3000 activities on one A3 sheet.