Task Crashing is a method of schedule compression (reducing the length of a project schedule). It means assigning more project resources (manpower and money) to a task in order to finish the work faster. Addition of resources to a task results into higher project expenses in the end, but it may help a project team to keep their project within initially desired time limits (if project risks to be delayed due to some reasons). This technique is often used when a project is considered to be critically dependent on its target dates (it will lose its benefits if completed not in time).
Task crashing implies dividing a task into certain portions that will be completed collaboratively by more resources (in other words some sub-tasks will be done in parallel). In practice not every activity or project can be accelerated by simply adding extra workers to them, as not all tasks can be decomposed into assignable sub-activities.
A common example is about changing car tires:
- You need to change a tire on a car – if a qualified person is already appointed to this activity, then it doesn’t make sense to add more people for acceleration (task crashing doesn’t work).
- You need to change four tires on a car – this task can be done fourfold quicker by involving four mechanics instead of only one, so all four tires will be changed at once (task crashing works).