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Critical Path Method

Presentation Summary..

Critical Path Method

• Project Management

• Critical Path

• Critical Path Method (CPM)

• Origin of CPM

• Why CPM is Important

• Terms Related to CPM

• Procedure of CPM

• Example

• Advantages/Disadvantages
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What is Project Management??

 Project management is the


discipline of initiating, planning,
executing, controlling, and closing
the work of a team to achieve
specific goals and meet specific
success criteria.

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What is Critical Path??

• The sequence of project activities


which add up to the longest overall
duration.
• The critical path determines the
shortest time possible to complete
the project.

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What is Critical Path Method??

• Critical Path Method (CPM) is basically a step-by-step Project


Management technique that separates planning and scheduling.
• It also clarifies the inter relationship of time and cost.
• CPM evaluates all the possible
alternative plans for project and
associates each plans with a
schedule.
• It is a mathematical based
algorithm for scheduling a set of
project activities.

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The origins of CPM

• The CPM was developed in the 1950s by Morgan R. Walker of


DuPont (Chemical Company) and James E. Kelley Jr. of Remington
Rand (Machines Manufacturer).
• It was first used in a missile-defense construction project.
• Since that time, the CPM has been adapted to other fields including
hardware and software product research and development.

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Where is it used??

Software Development

Construction

PROJECTS Aerospace & Defense

Research Projects

Product Development

And many more…


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Why CPM is important??

• According to Dr. Larry Bennett (1978), the critical path method also
has three main benefits for project managers. They are…

Identifies the Most Helps to Reduce


Important Tasks Timelines

Compares Planned with


Actual

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Key Steps in the Critical Path Method...

• There are six key steps in the critical path method. They are..

Estimate Activity Completion


Step 1 Specify Each Activity Step 4
Time

Establish Dependencies
Step 2 Identify the Critical Path Step 5
(Activity Sequence)

Update the Critical Path


Step 3 Draw the Network Diagram Step 6
Diagram to Show Progress

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Key Steps in the Critical Path Method...

• Step 1 : Specify Each Activity


• The first step is to identify the main deliverables of a project. Then
you can start breaking down the high-level activities into smaller
chunks of work.

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Key Steps in the Critical Path Method...

• Step 2 : Establish Dependencies (Activity Sequence)


• Some activities will depend on the completion of others. Listing the
immediate predecessors of each activity will help you identify the
correct order.

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Key Steps in the Critical Path Method...

• Step 3 : Draw the Network Diagram


• Once you have identified the activities and their dependencies, you
can draw the critical path analysis chart (CPA), known as the
network diagram.

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Key Steps in the Critical Path Method...

• Step 4 : Estimate Activity Completion Time


• Using past experience or the knowledge of an experienced team
member, you must now estimate the time required to complete
each activity. If you are managing a smaller project, you will most
likely estimate time in days. If you are working with a complex
project, you may have to measure time in weeks.

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Key Steps in the Critical Path Method...

• Step 5 : Identify the Critical Path


• There are two ways you can now identify the critical path.
1. You can eyeball your network diagram and simply identify the longest path
throughout the network (in terms of longest duration in days).
2. You can also identify critical activities with the Forward Pass/Backward
Pass technique, identifying the earliest start and finish times, and the latest
start and finish times for each activity.

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Key Steps in the Critical Path Method...

• Step 6 : Update the Critical Path Diagram to Show Progress


• As the project progresses, you will learn the actual activity
completion times. The network diagram can then be updated to
include this information (rather than continuing to use
estimations).

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Terms Related to CPM

• Float(slack): It is the amount of time an activity can be delayed


without delaying the project.
• Critical activity: Activity with zero float.

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Calculation of CPM

Need to find the following for each activity:

• Earliest Start Time (EST) • The earliest and latest that each
activity can start and finish
• Earliest Finish Time (EFT) without making the project
• Latest start time (LST) longer.

• Latest Finish Time (LFT) • We have to determine “critical”


activities.
• The longest path of planned
activities to the end of the • Crashing the critical path.
project.

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Exercise..

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Exercise

0 7 7 13 13 16
A C G
0 7 7 7 6 13 13 3 16
16 18
H
16 2 18
0 3 3 6 6 9
B D E
7 3 10 10 3 13 13 3 16

3 5
F
11 2 13
Exercise
Gantt Chart
Advantages of CPM

• Consistent framework for planning, scheduling, monitoring, and


controlling project.
• Helps proper communications between departments and
functions.
• Determines expected project completion date.
• Determines the dates on which tasks may be started or must be
started if the project is to stay in schedule.
• Shows which tasks must be coordinated to avoid resource or
timing conflicts.
• Shows which tasks may run in parallel to meet project
completion date.
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Disadvantages of CPM

• Reliability of CPM largely based on accurate estimates and


assumptions made.
• CPM does not guarantee the success of project.
• Resources may not actually be as flexible as management hope
when they come to address network float.
• Too many activities may the network diagram too complicated.
• Activities might themselves have to be broken down into mini
projects.

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Thanks for patient hearing.

Any Questions??