Spider Project is powerful professional project management software, unparalleled in the world market. The first SP version was launched in 1993 and since then it has been constantly improved. The current Version 10 is used in 28 countries. Spider Project offers numerous unique functional features and is the only PM software that optimizes resource, cost, and material constrained schedules and budgets for projects and portfolios. The unique features of Spider Project include Quantity Based Scheduling, Conditional Scheduling, Skill Scheduling, Cost and Material Leveling, Resource Critical Path Calculation, Cash and Material Flow Calculation and Management, Trend Analysis, Intelligent Risk Simulation and Analysis, Calculation of Success Probability Trends, Management of Project Time and Cost Buffers, Application of Corporate Norms, Management of many Parallel Budgets, Multiple WBS and many others.
Spider Project is used to manage many large scale programs in Russia, including the preparation for 2014 Winter Olympic Games. The application areas where Spider Project is successfully used include Aerospace, Banking, Construction, Defense, Energy, Engineering, Infrastructure, Manufacturing, Metallurgy, Mining, Oil & Gas, Railways, Retail, Shipbuilding, Software Development, Telecommunications, Utilities, etc.
ADVANCED FEATURES OF SPIDER PROJECT PROFESSIONAL
Reliable Project and Portfolio Scheduling
Spider Project creates schedules that are optimal or at least close to optimal and take into account all schedule constraints including resource, financing and supply restrictions for projects and portfolios of any size and complexity. Resource constrained schedules created by Spider Project are shorter than the schedules created by other packages. It saves a fortune to Spider Project users.
Advanced Scheduling Options
Project scheduling in Spider Project includes all traditional methods (like CPM and renewable resource leveling) and adds Quantity based scheduling (when activity durations are calculated basing on activity work volumes (physical quantities) and assigned resource productivities), Skill scheduling (when the software selects which resources to assign basing on their skills, productivities, costs and user defined priorities), Conditional scheduling (when software selects one of competing network paths basing on user defined conditions on special switch activities). Spider Project calculates feasible resource constrained floats and determines Resource Critical Path (Critical Chain).
Advanced Activity Modeling
In Spider Project activities may be of Duration, Productivity, Hammock, Milestone, and Switch types. Duration type is traditional – activity duration does not depend on assigned resources. For activities of Productivity type it is necessary to define activity Volumes – the quantities of work that shall be done on activities in physical units (e.g. cubic meters, tons, etc.). Activity duration is calculated basing on total productivity of assigned resources. Hammock activities last from one event to another (e.g. from the start of one activity to the finish of another or same activity). In Spider Project it is possible to assign costs, resources and materials on Hammock activities and link them with other activities by all types of dependencies with Leads/Lags. It is also possible to assign costs and resources on milestone activities. Switch activities define which of outgoing dependencies shall be selected in the project/portfolio schedule.
Advanced Resource Modeling
In Spider Project resources are divided into two separate objects: renewable resources (people, machines) and consumable resources (materials, equipment). This way Spider Project users can define that renewable resources consume materials (a car consumes gas) during their work.
Both renewable and consumable resources may be produced (supplied) and used or consumed on project activities. Variable resource availability may be defined in time and/or through resource production and consumption on project activities.
Resources may be assigned on activities to work in teams (together), or independently (e.g. in different shifts), part time, and with variable workload (e.g. when they are not busy at activities with higher priorities). Assigned resources may have different productivities and activity duration is calculated basing on activity volume (quantity) of work and total productivity of assigned resources. Spider Project users can create predefined crews (multiresources) and assign crews thus assigning all resources that belong to these crews. At any moment the crews may be changed and these changes will be applied to all future crew assignments. This option is very useful for what if evaluations and resource management during project execution. Project and Portfolio schedules may be calculated taking into account supply restrictions and delaying activities if materials necessary for their completion are not available.
Advanced Network Modeling and Analysis
Spider Project includes all traditional approaches to Network creation and has additional options like Time Lag calendars and Volume Lags (e.g. next activity can start after 500 meters were done on preceding activity). Besides all traditional types of activity dependencies Spider Project users can define Conditional branches that depend on the status of switch activities, Double dependencies (links from the certain point of preceding activity to the certain point of succeeding activity), Strict Dependencies when succeeding activities shall start exactly at the moments defined by these dependencies. Any filter can be applied to the project network and links, like show all activities that have no successors, all activities that succeed and precede to selected activity, only mandatory links, only driving links, only discretionary dependencies, only dependencies of selected activity, etc.
Advanced Cost Management Options
In Spider Project users can create any number of Cost Components (e.g. salary, overheads, cost of materials, cost of machines, external services, etc.) and Cost Centers (groups of cost components), assign Parallel Costs to the same activities (e.g. internal cost, contract cost) and calculate Parallel Budgets, simulate financing, apply Cost Discounting, manage Cash Flows and calculate NPV, IRR and Payback Periods. Costs can be assigned to activities, resources, resource assignments, materials as fixed, per work hour and per work volume units. Any number of currencies may be used.
Project and Portfolio schedules are calculated taking into account financial restrictions delaying activity execution until its completion is financed.
Spider Project users can create and use in their projects Reference-books of corporate norms and standards like Resource Productivities on typical assignments, Material Consumption per work volume unit for typical activities and assignments, Work unit costs for typical activities and assignments, standard Resource Crews, etc.
With reference-books it is enough to enter activity type and volume of work and the software will assign resources, materials, costs basing on reference-books information.
Typical Fragment Library
Typical Fragment is small project that simulates typical work package for certain volume of work (e.g. construction of 1 km pipeline using certain technology and in certain soil). After creating WBS (maybe using WBS templates) Spider Project users replace work packages with typical fragments adjusting work volumes. For example, it is sufficient to enter 2.5 multiplier and pipeline construction fragment created for 1 km pipeline will be transformed into the schedule of 2.5 km pipeline construction. With the Fragment Library detailed project models are created fast and reliable.
Spider Project users create three project execution scenarios – optimistic, most probable and pessimistic. Basing on these scenarios the software restores probability curves for completion time and costs of the project, its phases and activities. If to enter required probabilities to meet project or phase targets Spider Project calculates what target dates and costs shall be selected. For defined targets Spider Project calculates probabilities of their achievements (success probabilities). Besides Spider Project creates Critical schedule – backward project schedule that finishes on target dates usually with most probable estimates of activity durations. Intervals between project (phase/activity) start and finish dates in current and critical schedules are called start and finish buffers. We recommend to use optimistic schedule for project work force and manage time and cost buffers to achieve project targets.
Advanced Performance Management
Spider Project creates project archives and permits to compare any two project versions. This way the users can estimate what happened since the last schedule update, since the beginning of the month, since the beginning of the year, etc. Keeping project archives Spider Project permits to analyze trends of any project parameter, like project duration, cost, etc. Earned Value Management is supported and Earned Value calculations can be applied to total cost, any cost component and cost center, to materials and even to user defined fields. Spider Project shows not only current values but also trends of CPI, SPI, CV, SV and all other EV data.
We believe that trend analysis is the best information for decision making and trends of probabilities to meet project targets are best integrated performance indicators.
Advanced Portfolio Management
Spider Project Professional permits to create any number of project portfolios, to use any approaches to project prioritization, and to calculate portfolio schedules, taking into account project priorities, dependencies between activities of different projects, all resource, supply, and financing limitations
Spider Project produces any kind of tabular and graphical reports. Among them Project, Activity, Resource, Material Gantt Charts, Network Diagram, Organizational Charts, Linear Diagrams (Line of Balance Charts), S-Curves, Resource Histograms, Graphs and Histograms for User Defined Fields, etc. Reports can be created for any time period, including user defined. For reports that are used frequently it is possible to create report templates and get them by one click of the mouse. Spider script language can be used to automate creating groups of reports automatically.
Spider Project installation takes not more than 2 minutes. Spider Project does not need any external software except any version of Microsoft Windows. Its own internal database is optimized for fast project calculations and reporting. Database administration is not required. The software was written for project planners, does not require special IT skills, is easy to use, fast and very reliable. Free Spider Project Viewers are used by those who need to have an access to project data but are not authorized to change them. Actual data can be entered using free Demo software. It makes Spider Project implementation cheap and practical. With one license project data is available for the whole organization.
To know more on Spider project, please click here
PCO Subject Expert review
PCO Members Review
PCO members wishing to share and display their views, please click here