Both Reverse and Forward Planning in Projects

Copper Contributor

I have classes that I am loading into Projects.  I set up the project to use "Schedule From Finish Date" so that I can enter the class date and then Projects tells me when I have to start setting up the class (for example send out promotional material 90 days prior to the class) - so backwards scheduling.  That is working well but the problem is that I would like to have Projects calculate when to accomplish tasks after the class - so those calculations need to be forward scheduling (for example send in test grades 5 days after the class).  Is this possible without changing the project set up to "Schedule From Start Date" after the initial set-up?

3 Replies
RKN2021 -- I have had clients in the past who have needed this functionality. Here is how I recommend you do it:

1. On the task that represents the class, apply a Must Start On constraint and set the constraint date to the date that the class will start. This will "lock" the Start date of the task.
2. Set Microsoft Project to schedule backwards in time. This will calculate the date that the project needs to start.
3. Set Microsoft Project to schedule forwards in time. This will calculate the date that the project will finish.
4. Leave the scheduling mode set to schedule forwards in time.

Hope this helps.
Hi Dale,

Thank you for your response! I have some questions:
1. I am unsure of the steps to follow in your #2 above. Do you mean to go to Project --> Project Information-->Schedule from: "Project Finish Date"?
2. Your step #3 would then be to go to Project -->Project Information-->Schedule from: "Project Start Date"?
Yes, that is correct. But you need to apply the MSO constraint on the task representing the start date of the class before you do steps #2 and #3.