Multiple Critical Paths in Single Project

Carly Chaput
Carly Chaput ✭✭✭✭
edited 06/09/23 in Smartsheet Basics

The last task/activity in my project plan is not the "end" of the project, or at least not the end that we care about for reporting purposes.

I work in pharma, and our project sheets are tracking toward their NDA submissions, which is the "end" of the project that everyone cares about when it comes to executive reporting and schedule monitoring. There are literal years of activities built out after this date, including supplemental NDA submissions that will effectively become the new "end" once the first submission is through.

When I use the "Display Critical Path" option right now, nothing gets highlighted because nothing is linked all the way to the final date in the project plan, and I've tried utilizing the "show driving path" option in the gantt, which is almost useless because the thin dark purple highlight is barely noticeable against the grey.

I've clicked through as many settings as I can find and don't see any way to even make this driving path highlight a better color, nor does that highlight show anywhere besides the gantt, and it would be really nice to see that in the grid as well.

At this point, I'm considering creating a column titled "Critical To" and having this be a manual dropdown that we can categorize activities as critical to specific milestones, but the obvious issue with that is the ability to miss things that are actually on the critical path since it would be a manual add.

Are there any work arounds to highlight multiple critical paths or manually designate the "end" the critical path should be focused on?

Otherwise, is there a way to change the color of driving paths (photo included) or suggestions on ways I can improve the column idea?

Carly Chaput, PMP (she/her)

Project Manager | Program Management