Project Crashing in Project Management

By Arthi

Last updated on Mar 16 2022

Project Crashing in Project Management

Introduction to Project Crashing


Project crashing is done when project time is reduced and overloads one or more tasks. Basically crashing is done by increasing more resources to the project as planned to reduce the time. Therefore the primary objective cost is minimum when the project crashing is shortened. However, the result of the project crashing can be on a critical path. The project management team expects to deliver the project on time with the changes made.

 Project crashing steps help the project management software to work easier and deliver the project under the budget.


Examples of Crashing in Project Management


Here are some project crashing examples:


Project delay: Project penalties are applicable if the project is delayed. It is better to add more resources to the project to bring it back on track. Project delay would meet the ‘critical path’, not the ‘deadline’ of the project.


Avoid delay in the upcoming phase: Project delay impacts the project penalty and the results of the project. It is better to add additional costs than go to bigger cost overruns.


Project Team moves to another project: if the project is gettings executed, and at the same time, the project team receives a new project with good resources and cost,  the team would prefer to take the new project to work. Hence it is important to provide enough resources.


Free resources: if the company or organization contains free resources, it might help the project team to add them to their project.


Resource for training: sometimes, new resources are available in the company for the training period. This may interest and contribute to the project in the training process. And this might increase the rate of the project.


Time bonus: The project follows a certain infrastructure to complete the project. In this big process, the client doesn't want to stop or impact the ongoing project. Therefore the project receives a time bonus that can compensate the project cost.


Different Interpretations of Project Crashing

Project crashing is not fixed with one issue. It could refer to spending more money on the project to get things done faster. And it exactly shows the critical path, which provides efficient resources. It is always better to review the critical path that can provide any activities to shorten the resources. Another crashing method is called fast-tracking and is used when the project is overlapped. The project crashing is originally scheduled to run separately.


Advantages of Project Crashing

  • Project crashing connects the short deadlines in the project
  • The project crashing is works faster in execution.
  • It receives the schedule crashing projects on tracks


Disadvantages of Project Crashing

  • Project crashing increase the risk on resources and cost
  • It may require re-work
  • It is not suitable for all types of projects.
  • Cost is increased for re-work


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Project Crashing should be avoided if,

  • It threatens the elements of the work or accommodation of health and safety.
  • It is cost-effective, better to avoid using longer.
  • It creates another path to critical.
  • Time reduction is not achievable.


‘Fast-track construction’ works alternative for crashing pmp. It is scheduling that is used to compress the entire project schedule. This decides the beginning of the project to organize and design to construct the phases. This means the activity works sequentially or it needs to reschedule to work parallel. It reduces the overall program and increases the cost and risk.


What Prompts Crashing in Project Management?

With a lot of effort and cost, the project goes for planning and scheduling. The project crashing requires a higher cost to promote the project. It is not used unless there is an emergency. The main reason for project crashing would be that the project is not scheduled realistically. And it would not work until the project is executed. It is possible at the planning stage if the customer or stockholder disagrees with the project plan due to a date that isn’t achievable.


Another reason for project crashing is; it might change or attempt to control the project during the process. This issue needs to go immediately to the concerned team to decode the problem. The impact of this issue is waste of time, cost, and other project factors. The project management team faces this issue with the project. Hence the project manager should figure out the issue to go back to the scheduled baseline.


Project crashing is fast track method. It may look easier to execute the process sooner. But it depends on the budget.


The project crashing is important when:

  • The programming plan is inaccurate.
  • When there are unseen events, that causes delay, such as defects being discovered.
  • As per the client's request, the project needs to be completed on time as planned. Hence time extension is needed. But the client would wish to receive the project before the completion date.


Project Crashing Management Stages

Once the decision is made to use project crashing, there are a few steps that follow to get expected results.

  • Critical Path
  • Identify Tasks
  • What Are the Trade-offs
  • Decide Upon
  • Set-up a Budget



Critical Path: The first step in the project is to analyze the critical path. This helps to finalize the shortened methods paths for the project to minimize the time. Calculate the critical path to discover the essential tasks to work for secondary project success.


Identify Tasks: Gather the list of tasks to complete that are assigned. And when the complete information is collected, it is easy to identify the task to complete. If any task is responsible for a critical path cut them off and start looking at tasks that are lightened.


What Are the Trade-Off

We might think that the critical path task is shortened in order to make the project finalization. It is a waste of cost and time if this opportunity does not work for the final crashing project schedule. Hence calculating and adding more resources would cost more in the trade-off method.


Decide Upon:

For any project planning the budget needs to be decided. And for project crashing cost in project management needs to be finalized later. To initiative for any new planning, ‘baseline’, ‘schedule’, and ‘‘resource plan’ need to be updated.


When to stop crashing a project?

Sometimes it is necessary to stop the project from crashing in project management. It helps the project crashing to reduce schedule time as much as possible to bring the cost low. It is better to stop the project from crashing when it is not cost-effective. And the basic rules are:


  • Compress only crucial activities.
  • Crash from the cheapest to the most expensive activity.
  • Crash activity until to reach the minimum time reduction.
  • Crash activity until it gets more costly to crash than not to crash.


Aim to achieve crashing:

  • Use the current resource to improve and increase efficiency and address the productivity issues.
  • Increase the resource to critical path activity. This can work internally for the resources.
  • Using different techniques might include off-site prefabrication, scaffolding, temporary weatherproofing, and so on.
  • Fast-tracking activities.
  • Working longer for the process.
  • Additional Administration.
  • Changing the design or specification.
  • Limiting the range.
  • Early obtainment of items.


Many of these strategies are necessary to lead some additional costs to reduce. At the same time number of tasks needs to be performed in a shorter period by using the resources. Time pressure may be higher by purchasing cost in addition and this can lead to incomplete information and complexity.


It is important to clear the client or contractor project on time or else need to bear the additional cost. There are various risks is attached to the project crashing, When the resources are focused on the critical path. And there are possibilities for the noncritical paths too. But quality, safety, and compliance should not affect the results of the critical path entity crashing. Hence the project program of the task might not suit the all resources that are not familiar.


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Project crashing works in project management by using the resources in a critical path in order to reach the goal. By using the resources, it is possible with the noncritical path but it impacts the crashing time in project management, cost, and other project factors. Fast-tracking activities involve achieving crashing. And the project crashing helps to execute the project faster. Hence project crashing is necessary to use in project management.


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About the Author

Sprintzeal   Arthi

Arthi is a content writer at Sprintzeal. She is fond of creating informative content for readers in the Education Domain. Her work is focused on professionals aiming to upskill in their careers.

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