- Problem definition
The project schedule is the tool that communicates what work needs to be performed, which resources of the organization will perform the work and the time frames in which that work needs to be performed. The project schedule should reflect all of the work associated with delivering the project on time. Without a full and complete schedule, the project manager will be unable to communicate the complete effort, in terms of cost and resources, necessary to deliver the project .
- Feasible options Identification
Project has a lot of tools to develop a project schedule with different complexity level of actions planning for the small projects, to the use of the Gantt Charts and network Analysis for large projects. In this blog, I will outline all the tools that are required for developing the Gantt chart. The chart will illustrate all the tasks that is required and involved in the project with order and time scale. This schedule will give an overview about the project and the associated activates and task and when the project needs to be finished.
- Development of the outcome for the alternative
When you set up a Gantt chart, we need to think through all of the tasks and activities involved in your project. As part of the process, we will assign each task and how long each one will take, and what are the problems that we may face during the project. These details we’ll give an overview about the projects difficulties and how to tackle each task in order to keep the project going.
Gantt charts also help to work out practical aspects of a project, such as the minimum time it will take to finish, and which tasks need to be completed before others can start. Plus, you can use them to identify the critical path – the sequence of tasks that must individually be completed on time if the whole project is to deliver on time.
Finally, you can use Gantt charts to keep your team and your sponsors informed of progress. Simply update the chart to show schedule changes and their implications, or use it to communicate that key tasks have been completed.
Creating a Gantt chart
You can see an example Gantt chart in Fig.1, below:
Fig.1 Gantt chart
- Selection of acceptable criteria
To create one for your project, we will start using the following example:
Step 1: Identify the Tsaks
In order to start working with Gantt chart, we’ll need to identify all the required tasks and activities throughout the project. So, to start, all activates to be listed using one of the tools such as Work Breakdown Structure (WBS). Plus, the start time of each activity and the duration of each need to be identify in order to calculate the project time and the float time of the critical path of the project.
The following is an example of a tender to create a new “software as service” product, using the Gantt chart in order to calculate the overall timescale for the delivery of the project and organize the activities as well. You start I was said by starting to list all the activities and task that is required in the project as following:
Table.1 Listing Project’s Tasks
Step 2: Identify the relationships
Next, we need to identify the relationships between each activities and tasks. Means, you need to identify which activities came first and what activity following it. Most of the activities will be depending on previews activities and can’t start unless the previews activities are done. These relationships can be very complicated without using Gantt chart since there are some activities correlate with each other in indirect way. Gantt chart will sum up all activities and its relationship together and will illustrate the time effects if one of them got delayed by any means.
These dependent activities are called “sequential” or “linear” tasks. Other tasks will be “parallel” – i.e. they can be done at the same time as other tasks. You don’t have to do these in sequence, but you may sometimes need other tasks to be finished first. So, for example, the design of your brochure could begin before the text has been edited Identify which of your project’s tasks are parallel, and which are sequential. Where tasks are dependent on others, note down the relationship between them. This will give you a deeper understanding of how to organize your project, and it will help when you start scheduling activities on the Gantt chart.
Table.2 Tasks’ relationships
Step 3: Input the Tasks into a software to generate Gantt Chart
There are special tools and software that will help us to Gantt chart, such as Gantto, Matchware or Microsoft Projects.
Fig.2 Example of Gantt chart
- Analysis and Comparison of the Alternatives
As can be seen from this blog, Gantt chart make scheduling and relating each activities and task easier and will help the project in many aspects. The advantages of scheduling the project tasks using Gantt chart can be listed as follow:
- They provide a basis for you to monitor and control project activities.
- They help you determine how best to allocate resources so you can achieve the project goal.
- They help you assess how time delays will impact the project.
- You can figure out where excess resources are available to allocate to other projects.
- They provide a basis to help you track project progress.
- Performance monitoring
As your project moves along, it will evolve. For example, in our scenario, if quality assurance of core modules revealed a problem, then you may need to delay training, and halt development of the management information system until the issue is resolved.
Update the Gantt chart to reflect changes as soon as they occur. This will help you to keep your plans, your team, and your sponsors up to date.
- Project Scheduling. (n.d.). Retrieved August 24, 2014. http://www.projectinsight.net/project-management-basics/project-management-schedule
- Gantt Charts: Planning and Scheduling More Complex Projects. (n.d.). Retrieved August 24, 2014. http://www.mindtools.com/pages/article/newPPM_03.htm
- Gantt Chart Template for Excel. (n.d.). Retrieved August 24, 2014. http://www.vertex42.com/ExcelTemplates/excel-gantt-chart.html