Posted on Nov 21, 2013

Management Controls today announced that Forecaster™, its project cost management software, has processed more than 25 million labor hours and $2 billion of shutdown, turnaround and outage (STO) costs. Forecaster’s deep industrial experience and extraordinary accuracy improves the timeliness and quality of decisions made during STOs as well as complex maintenance and capital projects.

Forecaster is a companion product to Track™, the leading contract spend management software used by 75% of North America’s refining capacity and many large chemical manufacturers. “Track is an hours and cost calculation engine” said Bob Harrell, founder and CEO of Management Controls, Inc., developer of Track and Forecaster.

With interfaces to SAP, Primavera and Track, Forecaster is an Earned Value Management (EVM) analytical, project cost reporting and forecasting engine. Forecaster provides on-demand visibility to vital STO information and industry standard EVM calculations. Additionally, Forecaster produces up to date, management level S-Curve dashboards that detail Schedule (SPI, SV) and Cost (CPI, CV) EVM metrics.

Forecaster uses all relevant project information:

  • Baselines, updates, change orders, estimates and EVs from planning/scheduling software such as Oracle Primavera
  • Committed and actual costs from SAP and other ERP systems
  • Shift-by-shift contractor headcount
  • Contractor direct and indirect hours, material and equipment costs
  • Contractor-specific hours and costs calculated using actual contract terms & conditions and craft labor rates
  • Company internal labor hours and costs
  • Hours and costs by contractor, PO, WO
  • Supports general work order(s) distributed to actual WOs
  • Other related costs such as taxes and demurrage from SAP
  • Reports contingency(s) balances and Cost Impact status

“Forecaster replaces home-grown spreadsheets with standard daily progress reports and forecasts,” Harrell said. “It manages contingencies and controls scope changes. Most importantly, it can prevent unpleasant financial surprises.”

Track and Forecaster are widely adopted across North American refining and chemical plants. A third Management Controls product, Estimator, will soon be released. Estimator builds asset/activity/resource templates used to develop scope and easily add or remove items to evaluate alternative plans and budgets.

“Cost engineers no longer struggle to extract project data from Primavera, field timesheets and SAP, evaluate the accuracy of the data, and then try to load it into Excel spreadsheets,” Harrell said. “Forecaster uses labor, equipment and material quantities, priced using actual contract terms and rates in order to calculate current progress and forecast hours and costs at completion. Owners and contractors benefit in multiple ways: hours and costs are known daily; no time is wasted time disputing timesheets and invoices; and everyone knows where to focus their attention.”

Management Controls has produced a white paper that explores the details of integrating estimates, actuals and forecasts for STOs and other maintenance and capital projects. It is available for download at

About Management Controls

Management Controls is the developer of Track, Forecaster and Estimator, SAP and Oracle Primavera interfaces. Its software supports success in industrial maintenance and capital projects by providing owners and contractors with accurate, up-to-the-minute progress information fundamental to better decision-making. Founded in 1989, Management Controls is headquartered in Houston. Learn more at