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Supporting Activity

By | December 2012
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Provide real-world examples of activities where each dependency type is used: finish-to-start, start-to-start, finish-to-finish, and start-to-finish.

Finish-to-Start: the most common causal relationship hence no explanation is necessary for its usage. Start-to-Finish: Rarely used but is useful when developing a schedule backwards from a fixed end date. Start-to-Start: this represents a true relationship between two activities and has nothing to do with their predecessors.  If I happen to have two tasks that start at the same time because of a predecessor, that is better represented as two finish-to-start relationships (e.g. systems testing & developing documentation can both begin once development is complete, but there is no relationship between systems testing & developing documentation so we wouldn’t want to use a Start-to-Start dependency here).  This dependency is often used with a lag to represent the connection between two activities that run in parallel but cannot start at exactly the same time (e.g. apply the first coat of paint & apply the second coat of paint).  A true Start-to-Start example is a race between two runners where each runner is represented as a separate activity – while they will likely finish at different times, both must start at exactly the same time. Finish-to-Finish: this is generally used to represent activities that must complete at the same time so as to not impact their successor activities or one or more of the objectives for the project.  A non-project example of this is the act of preparing food at a restaurant – the chefs must ensure that the main course and garnishes are ready at exactly the same time so that plating can be done without impacting quality.

Which metric does a project manager have most control over: cost variance, schedule variance, cost performance index, or schedule performance index? Explain how so. Which one does a project manager have least control over?

A project manager has most...
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