Photo by John McArthur on Unsplash

Recovery of a Critical Test Project

Customer: Large aerospace manufacturing company.

Brief: Design, build and operate two large-scale mechanical test rigs for a new aircraft project.

Challenges: The project was weeks behind schedule and was impacting the certification date for the aircraft; millions of dollars of sales were being delayed. The board were considering moving the work to the sister company.

Photo by John McArthur on Unsplash


I took over the management of this project that was slipping further and further behind schedule.

I held daily standup meetings to determine who was doing what and to work out a new plan that recovered schedule.

It was quickly clear that non-critical things were being prioritized and people were being used to do non-essential work that could be delayed until later.

I removed the project management team who refused to change and made the team much flatter. I brought in additional resource to do the low priority work and reassigned the critical resources to do the high value and essential work.

Unique challenges:

The group of engineers that I was managing needed a big change in direction which wa snot easy for some of them to do.

Outcome: We started testing on the first test rig 15 minutes before the scheduled date (thus recovering 4 weeks in 2 months) and the other rig also started on time recovering 6 weeks in 3 months.