In this chapter we discussed two of the most popular management science techniquesCPM and PERT networks. Their popularity is due primarily to the fact that a network forms a picture of the system under analysis that is easy for a manager to interpret. Sometimes it is difficult to explain a set of mathematical equations to a manager, but a network often can be easily explained. CPM/PERT has been applied in a variety of government agencies concerned with project control, including various military agencies, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), and the General Services Administration (GSA). These agencies are frequently involved in large-scale projects involving millions of dollars and many subcontractors. Examples of such governmental projects include the development of weapons systems, aircraft, and NASA space exploration projects. It has become a common practice for these agencies to require subcontractors to develop and use a CPM/PERT analysis to maintain management control of the myriad project components and subprojects .
CPM/PERT has also been widely applied in the private sector. Two of the major areas of application of CPM/PERT in the private sector have been research and development (R&D) and construction. CPM/PERT has been applied to various R&D projects, such as developing new drugs, planning and introducing new products, and developing new and more powerful computer systems. CPM/PERT analysis has been particularly applicable to construction projects. Almost every type of construction projectfrom building a house to constructing a major sports stadium to building a ship to constructing an oil pipelinehas been subjected to network analysis.
Network analysis is also applicable to the planning and scheduling of major events, such as summit conferences, sports festivals, basketball tournaments, football bowl games , parades, political conventions, school registrations, and rock concerts. The availability of powerful, user -friendly project management software packages for the personal computer will serve to increase the use of this technique.