Activity Network Diagram (also referred to as an Arrow Diagram) is a tool used to map out activities and tasks for a project in sequential order. Basically, it graphically depicts a project timeline.
This tool displays interdependent relationships between activities, tasks, and groups as they all impact a project. Boxes and arrows are used to illustrate different activities and the links between them as well as chart the sequential order of the entire process.
An Activity Network Diagrams is a quality management tool that helps manage the development of projects by charting the flow of activity between individual tasks. It is essentially a diagram of project activities that shows the sequential relationships of activities using boxes and arrows.
Arrows pointing away from a task box go to the sequentially following task(s). Hence, arrows pointing into a task box come from its preceding task(s).
The overall diagram illustrates which tasks must be completed before the following task can begin. It also shows which tasks cannot start until at preceding task is complete.
An Activity Network Diagram graphically shows;
Activity Network Diagram is used for identifying time sequences of events which are pivotal to your project objectives. The process of creating this diagram helps in understanding specific event sequences driving time requirements, thus enabling you to create a realistic project schedule. It also helps to find out the most efficient sequence of events needed to complete a project.