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05 Critical Path Analysis - Critical Path Analysis...

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© Business Studies Online: Slide 1 Critical Path Analysis Critical Path Analysis Critical Path Analysis (CPA), is sometimes called Network Analysis It is a tool used to plan activities so that a job can be completed in the shortest time It breaks a job down into a number of tasks, and looks at the dependency of them For example, list the activities that must be completed in order to make a cup of coffee It is used commonly in manufacturing and construction
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© Business Studies Online: Slide 2 Parts of the Network Parts of the Network A network consists of 2 things: An ACTIVITY This requires time and/or resources They are drawn as ARROWS from left to right The length of the arrow is NOT important A Node These represent the start and the end of an activity They are represented by CIRCLES Every network MUST start and end with a node
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© Business Studies Online: Slide 3 A Simple Network Diagram A Simple Network Diagram A business wishes to build a new factory Before it can do so it needs to: Buy the land ( Activity A – will take 12 weeks ) Draw up Plans ( Activity B – will take 3 weeks ) A simple network may be drawn to illustrate this scenario: A B 12 3
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© Business Studies Online: Slide 4 Illustrating Simultaneous Activities Illustrating Simultaneous Activities Of course in reality some activities can be carried out simultaneously Using the previous example: Assume that whilst in the process of buying the land the firm wants to apply for planning permission ( Activity AA – will take 14 weeks ) Try drawing a network using your instructions for making a cup of coffee A B AA 12 3 14
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© Business Studies Online: Slide 5 Developing The Network Developing The Network There are a number of problems with our previous example: There is no way of identifying the nodes It doesn’t help us identify the crucial activities In order to do this the nodes can be developed in order to show more information: 1 Node numbers showing order of activities shown in the left hand semi­circle of each node The right­ hand quarters will be used to hold additional information
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© Business Studies Online: Slide 6 Calculating The Earliest Start Time Calculating The Earliest Start Time The main reason for drawing a network is to identify the CRITICAL activities To do this we must calculate the earliest time at which any given activity can start This is called the Earliest Start Time (EST) of the activity It is calculated using the following formula: EST = EST of Previous activity + Duration of previous activity
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