Establishing dependencies

As previously mentioned, you can set dependencies in several different ways. If you use the tasks on the Gantt Chart to set dependencies, you must establish finish-to-start relationships. To establish more complex relationships, including lag and lead, use the Task Information dialog box.

Note You can set dependencies between two summary tasks or between a summary task and a subtask in another task group by using a finish-to-start or a start-to-start dependency. You cannot use any other type of dependency, and you cannot set dependencies between a summary task and any of its own subtasks.

Setting finish-to-start dependencies

With the Gantt Chart displayed, you can use your mouse, use the Link Tasks tool, or choose EditOLink Tasks to set finish-to-start dependencies. Use the following steps to set a simple finish-to-start relationship:

1. Place your mouse pointer over the predecessor task until the pointer turns into four arrows pointing outward.

2. Drag the mouse pointer to the second task. An information box describes the finish-to-start link that you are about to create, as shown in Figure 4-26.

3. Release your mouse button when you're satisfied with the relationship, and Project establishes the link.

Mouse Pointer Drag
Figure 4-26: The relationship isn't established until you release the mouse button. If you have second thoughts, just drag the pointer back to the predecessor task before releasing your mouse button.

To use the Link Tasks tool or the EditOLink Tasks command, simply follow these steps:

1. Select the tasks that you want to link. To select adjacent tasks, drag through their ID numbers in the Gantt Chart table. To select nonadjacent tasks, hold Ctrl as you click the ID numbers of the tasks that you want to link.

Note Starting in Project 2000, you also can select nonadjacent tasks by holding Ctrl as

*-""" you click their Gantt bars.

2. Click the Link Tasks tool, or choose EditOLink Tasks. Project establishes the link.

Setting other types of dependencies

You can use either the Task Information dialog box or the Task Dependency dialog box to set any type of dependency. Use the Task Dependency dialog box, as shown in Figure 4-27, to establish dependency types or lag times between tasks. To open the Task Dependency dialog box, double-click the line that connects the tasks that you want to change.

a

From: Apply solution 2

To: Apply heat

lype: 13tart-to-Start (33)

2] \p> 1 ±i

delete

<X 1 Cancel

Figure 4-27: Use this dialog box to establish task dependencies or lag time.

From the Task Information dialog box, in addition to establishing dependencies and lag times, you also can set lead times. If you choose to use the Task Information dialog box, open the dialog box for the successor task and build the relationship on the Predecessors tab.

Follow these steps to create a task dependency:

1. Double-click the task that you want to make a successor. When the Task Information dialog box appears, select the Predecessors tab if it's not already displayed.

2. Click the Task Name column; an arrow appears at its far end.

3. Click the arrow to the right of the column to display the drop-down list of task names, as shown in Figure 4-28.

4. Click the task that you want to identify as the predecessor to this task.

Task Information

General Predecessors | Resources | Advanced | Notes | Custom Fields

Name: IAcquire materials 2 Duration: [2d -fj r Estimated fcredeceKors:

General Predecessors | Resources | Advanced | Notes | Custom Fields

Name: IAcquire materials 2 Duration: [2d -fj r Estimated fcredeceKors:

K|v

Complete Analysis

A

ID

Task Warne

Type

Lag

= 1

5

Complete Anatos ]7

Start-to-Fmsh (SF)

00

Phase One Testing Acquire materials Prepare jciution

Complete Analysis

Prepare soÎLÉion 2 Apply solution 2 Apply heat Complete Analysis 2

Submit Final Report

Figure 4-28: Every task that you create for your project appears on this list.

5. Click the Type field; a list box arrow appears.

6. Click the arrow to display a list of dependency types.

7. Click the type of dependency that you want to establish, such as start-to-start or start-to-finish.

To establish a dependency with no lag or lead, click OK at this point to create the relationship. To establish a delay, click the Lag column and supply an amount of time for the delay. To establish an overlap, simply enter a negative number in the Lag column. For example, if you want the successor to finish one week before the predecessor finishes, use a finish-to-finish relationship and type 1 week in the Lag column.

Tip Here's a quick way to create finish-to-finish, start-to-finish, or start-to-start rela tionships. Create the default finish-to-start relationship for the tasks. Then, double* click the link line to open the Task Dependency dialog box and change the relationship.

Project Management Made Easy

Project Management Made Easy

What you need to know about… Project Management Made Easy! Project management consists of more than just a large building project and can encompass small projects as well. No matter what the size of your project, you need to have some sort of project management. How you manage your project has everything to do with its outcome.

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