T7/ MS Project - Tutorial: Critical Path Optimization
In this MS Project tutorial, you will learn how to identify and optimize the critical path of multi-project planning, you will discover tips for easily monitoring complex projects of up to ten thousand tasks.
We will only focus on the planning factor. The resource factor will be taken into account in other training.
First, break your project down into milestones. Add target milestones that represent due dates for the completion of each milestone.
To change the format of the bar on the Gantt chart, double-click the milestone or go to the Format tab and click Bars . You can select the target format and choose the color red for the milestone.
To optimize your critical path, we will use two methods. The first method is to view the chain of predecessors. To do this, go to the Format tab and select Task Path, then Predecessor . You will be able to see the path of the predecessors of the selected task. This helps illustrate the path of predecessors and determine which tasks are critical. In this example, we find that tasks, 8 and 9, are critical.
We have two options: either advance the start of the task or reduce its duration. By bringing forward the start date for task 8, we see that the milestone is finishing on schedule and we are aligned with the target milestone.
The second method is to display critical tasks. On the Format tab, check Critical Task . Going through the project, we see that only project 2 is critical because it completes last.
If you want to see the critical path by project, set a deadline for each milestone. Double-click the milestone. Go to the advanced menu and set the deadline . We see that the project is becoming critical because we are going past the deadline. By reducing the duration of a critical task, the project becomes non-critical again.
And There you go. In a few simple steps, you can optimize the critical path of your project in Microsoft Project by taking into account the planning factor.
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