I like the way you can use it for managing resources. It is very easy to assign resources to multiple projects and to see resource assignments and resource capacity. I use resource assignments in PPM to report project progress and I find the reports easier to understand and more meaningful that the reports that generated in standalone MS Project.
Unlike most project management skills and methods, the first stages of the brainstorming process is ideally a free-thinking and random technique. Consequently it can be overlooked or under-utilized because it not a natural approach for many people whose mains strengths are in systems and processes.
Consequently this stage of the project planning process can benefit from being facilitated by a team member able to manage such a session, specifically to help very organised people to think randomly and creatively. Within project management fishbone diagrams are useful for early planning, notably when gathering and organising factors, for example during brainstorming.
Fishbone diagrams are very good for identifying hidden factors which can be significant in enabling larger activities, resources areas, or parts of a process.
Fishbone diagrams are not good for scheduling or showing interdependent time-critical factors. Fishbone diagrams are also called 'cause and effect diagrams' and Ishikawa diagrams, after Kaoru Ishikawaa Japanese professor specialising in industrial quality management and engineering who devised the technique in the s.
Ishikawa's diagram became known as a fishbone diagram, obviously, because it looks like a fishbone. A fishbone diagram has a central spine running left to right, around which is built a map of factors which contribute to the final result or problem.
For each project the main categories of factors are identified and shown as the main 'bones' leading to the spine. Into each category can be drawn 'primary' elements or factors shown as P in the diagramand into these can be drawn secondary elements or factors shown as S.
This is done for every category, and can be extended to third or fourth level factors if necessary. The diagram above is a very simple one. Typically fishbone diagrams have six or more main bones feeding into the spine. The categories used in a fishbone diagram should be whatever makes sense for the project.
Various standard category sets exist for different industrial applications, however it is important that your chosen structure is right for your own situation, rather than taking a standard set of category headings and hoping that it fits.
At a simple level the fishbone diagram is a very effective planning model and tool - especially for 'mapping' an entire operation. Where a fishbone diagram is used for project planning of course the 'Effect' is shown as an aim or outcome or result, not a problem. The 'Problem' term is used in fault diagnosis and in quality management problem-solving.
Some fishbone diagrams can become very complex indeed, which is common in specialised quality management areas, especially where systems are computerised. A critical path analysis is normally shown as a flow diagram, whose format is linear organised in a lineand specifically a time-line.
PERT is not normally relevant in simple projects, but any project of considerable size and complexity, particularly when timings and interdependency issues are crucial, can benefit from the detailed analysis enabled by PERT methods.
PERT analysis commonly feeds into Critical Path Analysis and to other broader project management systems, such as those mentioned here.
Critical Path Analysis flow diagrams are very good for showing interdependent factors whose timings overlap or coincide. They also enable a plan to be scheduled according to a timescale. Critical Path Analysis flow diagrams also enable costings and budgeting, although not quite as easily as Gantt charts belowand they also help planners to identify causal elements, although not quite so easily as fishbone diagrams below.
This is how to create a Critical Path Analysis. As an example, the project is a simple one - making a fried breakfast. First note down all the issues resources and activities in a rough orderagain for example: Assemble crockery and utensils, assemble ingredients, prepare equipment, make toast, fry sausages and eggs, grill bacon and tomatoes, lay table, warm plates, serve.
Note that some of these activities must happen in parallel - and crucially they are interdependent. That is to say, if you tried to make a fried breakfast by doing one task at a time, and one after the other, things would go wrong. Certain tasks must be started before others, and certain tasks must be completed in order for others to begin.
The plates need to be warming while other activities are going on. The toast needs to be toasting while the sausages are frying, and at the same time the bacon and sausages are under the grill. The eggs need to be fried last. A Critical Path Analysis is a diagrammatical representation of what needs done and when.
Timescales and costs can be applied to each activity and resource. Here's the Critical Path Analysis for making a fried breakfast:The critical path method is a step-by-step project management technique to identify activities on the critical path.
It is an approach to project scheduling that breaks the project into several work tasks, displays them in a flow chart, and then calculates the project duration based on estimated durations for each task. Note: and older issues are only available timberdesignmag.com files.
On most versions of windows you must first save these files to your local machine, and then unblock the file in order to read it. To unblock a file, right click on it, and select properties, and then select the ‘unblock’ button. Project Management Time Analysis The fourth article in our series will explore time analysis, which is critical for any project.
Learn more about the two best methods for project .
This page describes how to use Microsoft Project (MSP) to implement the project management strategies described in my project planning documents to managers.
Information here distills knowledge and wisdom gleaned from years of usage and studying books, user forums, help files, training documents, videos, etc. The external structure illustrates how the instrument driver presents both an interactive interface and a programming interface.
The application programming interface (API) is the set of user-callable instrument driver VIs used in end-user systems. While the analysis of task dependencies for a large project is a complex task often requiring computer software, consider a few simple examples to illustrate the concept.
Example 1: Making coffee. Imagine getting out of bed in the morning, yawning and making your way to the kitchen to discover that you forgot to preset your coffeemaker .