This article will walk you through how to create relationships between tasks by using Predecessors. Start with the video below:
Creating relationships within a project plan is the key to success. Relationships organize tasks and show a realistic view of how certain tasks affect those related to it. So, how to create these relationships? By using the Predecessors functionality of Inspire Planner, your project takes form in a new light.
Step 1 - Create a Project Outline
Once you have your project outline, it should look something like the image below. As you can see, the Predecessors have not been filled in. In the current phase of the project, no tasks are dependent on one another.
Step 2 - Understand Dependency Relationships
In order to use the Predecessor function effectively, first you need to understand the concept of Dependency Relationships in project planning.
There are four common ways to define relationships between tasks:
Finish to Start (FS)
This is Inspire Planner’s default relationship and means that a linked task can begin once the previous (predecessor) task has been completed.
The image above shows an example of a Finish-to-Start relationship in the Gantt Chart. The orange line links the completion point of the predecessor task to the start of the new task.
Start to Start (SS)
A Start-to-Start relationship involves two tasks being set to start in unison, but these tasks to finish at different points in time.
The image above shows two tasks that start together and finish at different times.
Finish to Finish (FF)
Finish-to-Finish tasks must be completed at the same time, but can begin at different points in time, as displayed in the image below.
Start to Finish (SF)
Start-to-Finish relationships are the least commonly used in project planning. Start-to-Finish tasks mean that the successor task’s completion is determined by the predecessor’s start.
Once you understand the different relationship types, you can start setting up your project.
Step 3 - Put It into Action
Now that you understand how dependency relationships work, you are ready to implement relationships into your project.
There are two ways of connecting tasks, as demonstrated below.
Finish to Start
As you can see below, predecessor of Task 8 is Task 7. There are no letters beside it, indicating that it is set to the default Finish-to-Start relationship.
Start to Start
As you can see below, Task 9 is the predecessor of Task 10. They have a Start-to-Start relationship indicated by 9SS. The tasks start on the same day but they end on different days.
Finish to Finish
As you can see below, Task 12 is the predecessor to Task 13. They have a Finish-to-Finish relationship, indicated by 12FF in the Predecessor column.
Start to Finish
As you can see Task 14 is the predecessor to Task 15, and they have a Start-to-Finish relationship, indicated by 14SF.
This brings up the Task Information box.
Click the Add New button, and either enter the Task Name of the predecessor to which the task is to be linked, or select it from the dropdown list.
Select a type of relationship from the dropdown list.
Click the up or down arrows to set the Lag time.
Select the General tab to add information about the task, and the Notes tab to enter any additional details.
Once the Predecessor information has been filled in, the Predecessor column of the Gantt Chart shows the relationship details.
Step 4 – Multiple Predecessors
You can enter as many predecessors as you may need. Use semi-colon to separate predecessors. See example below.
As shown below, Tasks 7, 8, and 9 are predecessors of Task 10.
If you wish to edit the relationships, you can double-click in the desired Predecessor cell, press the Backspace key, and enter the correct relationship type.
For first-time project planners, please see Getting Started with Inspire Planner,or log a Help Ticket and someone from our Inspire Support Team will get back to you.