Manufacture and Marketing of a New Computer

The time period for each activity is estimated based on available data. A network model is established to show the relationship among the activities which will be used in computing for the critical path. The critical path is computed by means of the Critical Path Method (CPM). CPM is important because it determines the critical and noncritical activities which will be helpful in project planning and management (Hillier 417).As shown in Diagram 1, product benchmarking comes first because, in order to come up with a good design, the company should first analyze the attributes of the existing computer products in the market. From the data that will be gathered, software and hardware design should be done next. The detailed drawing should be done after all the designs are made in order to set the appropriate dimensions and features of the computer that will be manufactured. Preparation of the prototype and marketing plan can be done at the same time because they deal with different aspects of the product and may not affect the performance of each other for the entire project duration. Lastly, technical manuals should only be done after testing the product to ensure that the manual will be correct and will be based on the product’s true function and attributes.The duration of the critical path determines the total duration of the entire project. Based on Table 1, the project will be completed in 270 working days. Therefore in order to complete the project on January 19, 2009, the project should be started on December 26, 2007. Working days exclude weekends and legal federal holidays.All the critical activities are shaded in Table 1. This means that these activities are the most important tasks in the project and therefore must be done on schedule. Noncritical activities are designing software, developing a marketing plan, training of sales representatives and advertising.