CPM Schedule Construction

CPM Schedule Construction

Looking for a tool to plan, analyze, and schedule complex construction projects? You may want to learn a little about the Critical Path Method (CPM).

It will help you effectively manage construction projects, with proper documentation and record-keeping. Plus, you will be able to better schedule your construction project and meet a target deadline at minimum cost.

Sounds like a great tool, doesn’t it? Read on and learn more about CPM Schedule Construction, its benefits, and how you can make it work for your construction projects.

What Is the Critical Path Method?

cpm-schedule-construction-project-planConstruction projects can be quite complex, with tons of overlapping and interlinked tasks. That’s when the Critical Path Method, using cpm schedule construction,  comes into the picture.

CPM can help you analyze, plan, and schedule your projects. In this, diagrams are used to break down each activity or task. Using the diagrams, you can map out the time required to complete a project.

Additionally, you can identify the critical activities as well as the non-critical activities. You can also see which activities are flexible on time and which are not.

CPM will also let you compare different projects. You can check out the projects that are on, ahead, or behind schedule. Apply these insights to proactively maintain your schedules.

Benefits of the CPM Schedule Construction

Use CPM to identify your priorities, improve future planning, and facilitate effective resource management. Let’s zoom in on the advantages of this method.

  • Identifies Priorities: CPM can help you identify the most important tasks and their estimated durations.
  • Improves Future Planning: CPM allows for proper planning and scheduling. You can also check out each activity’s start and end time, slack, and lag.
  • Facilitates Resource Management: With CPM, you can get a better idea of where and how to use resources. This further decreases project duration and cost and increases productivity.

How to Use CPM in Construction

cpm-schedule-construction-project-managerFinding the critical path involves listing each task, identifying dependencies, drawing a network diagram, estimating time duration, and calculating and updating the critical path.

Below is a breakdown of these steps.

Step 1 – List Each Task

Start by listing all the activities or tasks in the project. Next, break these down into smaller tasks and subtasks.

You can choose how to display your structure. Use a tree, list, or table structure. These will serve as the foundation for the rest of your CPM schedule construction.

Step 2 – Identify Dependencies

Some tasks and subtasks will depend on the completion of others. Based on your structure, see which tasks are dependent on one another.

A simple approach is to ask yourself:

  • Which tasks should be completed first?
  • Which tasks should be completed together?
  • Which tasks should be completed last?

Step 3 – Draw a Network Diagram

Once you have listed the tasks and their dependencies, it’s time to draw a network diagram. Don’t worry, it’s nothing complicated.

Create a simple flowchart with the chronology of tasks. Use a box for each task and use arrows to show task dependencies.


Step 4 – Estimate Task Duration

Now, estimate the time you will require to complete each task. Use your experience and knowledge to make an educated guess.

You can also use previous project data and industry standards to estimate the duration of each task.

Step 5 – Calculate the Critical Path

There are a couple of ways to calculate the critical path. You can simply take a look at the network diagram and identify the longest sequence of tasks.

Alternatively, you can use the forward/backward pass technique. Forward pass means calculating the earliest start and finish time for each task. Backward task means calculating the latest start and finish time of each task.

Step 6 – Update the Critical Path

As the project progresses, you will see the actual time it takes to complete a task. So, update the critical path to include the new completion times.

You may also have to calculate a different critical path altogether. This will help you see if you’re on track or falling behind.

CPM Schedule Construction – The Wrap-Up

CPM is a simple but powerful tool, particularly for project management and task planning. It will help you identify your priorities and better manage your resources.

Follow our step-by-step guide to create a critical path. And you’ll be able to easily schedule your tasks and track their progress!

Additional Resources

  • nTask Project Management – Work together with your team to maintain accountability and transparency in your projects. Improve team communication and work visibility for successful task execution.
  • Teamwork – Teamwork helps project management teams deliver better projects in less time.
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