Critical Path | Online Help | Zoho Projects

Critical Path

Project management involves multiple activities that are tightly dependent on each other. These dependencies lead to strict deadlines failing, which causes the project to fall behind schedule. Zoho Projects displays the critical path of the project, which is the longest stretch of dependent activities in a project. These activities or tasks cannot be delayed without delaying the overall project. Identifying the critical path lets you effectively devote time and resources to such tasks.
Feature Availability: Enterprise plan

Benefits

  1. Identify activities that require more focus. Delaying these activities can throw projects off track
  2. Determine activities that can be completed in a shorter time (crashing) and reduce project duration
  3. Use the critical path timeline as a benchmark and measure the actual progress against it
  4. Track multiple critical paths, if available
  5. Identify non-critical activities and economize resources
Create tasks, set the duration, and establish task dependencies. Zoho Projects gives a visual representation of the critical path on a Gantt chart. You can also view non-critical activities and their slack time by hovering over the task.

Critical Path in Zoho Projects

Constructing a house involves numerous tasks that are dependent on one another. Considering a broad level list of tasks, let's see how Zoho Projects displays the critical path for the below schedule.


The critical path of the project is highlighted in red. Non-critical tasks are shown in blue. The dotted line denotes the slack for non-critical tasks.

View Critical Path on Gantt Chart

View Critical Path

  1. Navigate to your project and click Tasks in the top band.
  2. Open the Gantt view.
  3. Click in the smart bar on the right.
  4. Toggle Critical Path and Slack to view them on the Gantt Chart.
  5. Critical tasks will be highlighted in the task details page even if Critical Path is toggled off.

Slack in Tasks  

Slack is the acceptable delay in a task without delaying the project. Tasks that have slack are not part of the critical path and are considered non-critical activities. Slack is represented by a dotted line.

Slack in Dependent Tasks

If there a multiple successor tasks, the slack line will be shown from predecessor task to the nearest successor task.
  1. SS dependency: Slack line will be shown from the predecessor's start date to the successor's start date.
  2. SF dependency: Slack line will be shown from the predecessor's start date to the successor's end date.
  3. FS dependency: Slack line will be shown from the predecessor's end date to the successor's start date.
  4. FF dependency: Slack line will be shown from the predecessor's end date to the successor's end date.
Holidays will not be considered for charting the critical path.
 


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