Float time

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Float time
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Methods and techniques

Float time in finance (also public float) is an investment indicator expressed as a percentage and is the ratio of shares remaining in free public circulation to all shares issued by the enterprise. Free float is a distributed shareholding structure of a given public enterprise. The free float ratio determines what percentage of shares in a listed company is in free float, that is, for individual investors who make up distributed shareholding, with less than 5% of the share capital of the company[1].

Float time (also calles slack time) in project management has two forms[2][3]:

  • Total float (TF) - called also simply float is the amount of time you can delay the start of the task without delaying the earliest start of the project
  • Free float (FF) - can occur when multiple tasks are predecessors of one task. In that case some of tasks can have additional reserve: early start of successor minus early finish of predecessor

Float time in Critical Path Method

Critical Path Method (CPM) is a schedule network analysis technique that specifies the floating-point quantity or schedule flexibility for each network path by calculating the earliest start date, the earliest end date, the last start date, and the last end date for each activity. This technique is based on sequential networks and the estimated duration of a single for each activity[4].

The longest full path of the project is the Critical Path (CP). Any project activity with a float time of zero is considered as a critical path task. The critical path may change under the following conditions[5]:

  • When a result of having used up all their float time are actions which become tasks on the critical path.
  • When the milestone for critical is not met

References

Footnotes

  1. Chen, S. M., & Chang, T. H. (2001). Finding multiple possible critical paths using fuzzy PERT. IEEE Transactions on Systems, Man, and Cybernetics, Part B (Cybernetics), 31(6), 930-937.
  2. Chen, S. M., & Chang, T. H. (2001). Finding multiple possible critical paths using fuzzy PERT. IEEE Transactions on Systems, Man, and Cybernetics, Part B (Cybernetics), 31(6), 930-937.
  3. Heldman, K., Mangano, V. (2011). PMP: Project Management Professional Exam Review Guide
  4. Heldman, K., Mangano, V. (2011). PMP: Project Management Professional Exam Review Guide
  5. Heldman, K., Mangano, V. (2011). PMP: Project Management Professional Exam Review Guide

Author: Anna Mrajca