The importance of critical path in a project schedule has come to light with the emergence of schedule delay analysis and other techniques that can be used to determine the occurrences that caused delays and costs involved that would be needed to compensate for any losses incurred.
The determination of the method to be used to determine delays, how it will be used, what other information and documents will be needed to study the claims made by the parties and the court proceedings are overseen by delay experts, who have multiple years of experience within the field.
This article aims to highlight the importance of critical path in determination of delays.
What Is The Critical Path?
It is the sequence of projects tasks and activities arranged in such a way that their duration adds up to make the longest duration and it is a measure of the shortest time that will be needed to complete the project.
It is important to know that all the activities on the CP are critical activities and need to be completed in the scheduled time. However non-critical activities are the activities that can be completed later.
Critical Path Methodology
CPM is a technique used for scheduling and administration of construction contracts and agreements. According to the Court of Claims, the CPM allows parties involved in the projects to identify a sequence of activities that need to be completed for the other activities to proceed and for the project to be completed on time.
Where some non-critical activities may be delayed without any consequences as the absorb float assigned to them, critical activities if delayed can delay the entire project.
How Critical Paths Are Used To Determine Delays
In case of a delay claim by either party, a CP analysis is mandatory. In an attempt to prove any claims that the parties may have, contractors, are expected to show how the actions of the party affected the duration or performance of the activities.
The CPM is chosen to prove delays within the projects because the ability of activities on the critical path alone can change the duration project. Observing the CP for the analysis of delays in projects is an established way used by many delay experts today.
What Is Schedule Delay Analysis?
It is an analytical technique that uses the CPM to determine the events that impacted the untimely completion of the project. It works by utilizing forensics on the project documentation and other data that is relevant to the project, to assess the damage caused by events, to the duration or any other damages to the project.
Results of the analysis focus on providing information about a certain amount of time for which compensation may be needed in order to recover any damages.
Over the past 40 years, “Retrospective CPM techniques” have become increasingly common among experts when dealing with contract disputes which goes to show how well institutions like courts and organizations like construction companies, are relying on the accuracy of the methodology.
Retrospective methodologies use the information of subsequent events in order to establish whether the events specified were responsible for causing delays to the completion, considering the whole project of the work.
Critical Path Method And Acceptance
The importance of critical path in determination of delays can be gauged from the fact that arbitration panels, courts and most legal forums now prefer the use of the CPM scheduling techniques in order to determine delays in schedule, any accelerations or disruptions in projects and impacts. Throughout the world, all institutions have shown a general acceptance and preference for the CPM methodology.
Primacy of delay is a concept that argues that the delays to the CP are the only significant delays that should be considered when calculating the schedule overruns and the impacts on the project duration.
The concept has allowed the development of the construction delay analysis which allows delay experts to determine the costs that would be needed to compensate for the project delays. All delay estimation techniques used today, stem from the basic CP methodology.