‘CPM,’ or ‘critical path method,’ is a type of scheduling framework or formula that can be applied for the various activities involved in project management. In any given project, for example, CPM scheduling will benefit in terms of providing the sequence for all activities and reasons that connect all details of a given project. Through the use of CPM, any operational concern or project can be handled or manipulated more easily and efficiently.
It was in the late 1950s when the project management concept involved in CPM was first developed. Back then, Morgan Walker and James Kelley worked on the scheduling framework and technique while they were still connected to different companies. Eventually, CPM, or the critical path method, was applied to various industries including the fields of: aerospace technology, construction, computer program development, and various engineering fields, among many others.
The essence of CPM lies in three basic requirements in order to create a model for a particular project. The first requirement involves the documentation of all project-related activities. This section includes all of the steps needed to complete a particular project with each step classified into different categories depending on their relevance. The second part of CPM involves the timing of the different steps in project implementation. This section basically lists the time allocation for each step or activity within the project involved. The last part of CPM involves the dependencies. This part pertains to the so-called links or connections between each activity involved in the project. With all of these sections closely monitored, various companies may obtain results in the form of better operational efficiency. With a more efficient operation and project implementation, companies that implement CPM may also achieve higher profits, a better use of resources, and/or reduced operational costs. In terms of all the players involved, the best benefit of CPM is that it promotes better communication because each step of the project is documented, and this makes things easier to understand and implement.