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Task Constraint Overview

Understanding Task Constraints

Task constraints determine when a task should start and end on a project. 

As you build your project plan, you make decisions on the sequence and time frame of your tasks on the project. Tasks can function independent of any sequences but they might impact the project timeline. Task Constraints allow a project manager to plan when certain tasks can be completed on a project.

Depending on the constraint you use, you might have to specify a Planned Start Date, a Planned Completion Date, or both for the task.

Constraint types that require defined dates impact predecessor relationships. Consider using a constraint type that does not require specific dates if using predecessor relationships between tasks.

The following table displays each constraint and its abbreviation. Abbreviations are used on task lists and when creating Kick-Start import files. Click the linked title of each task constraint for more information about that type of constraint.

Constraint Name

Abbreviation

As Soon As Possible

ASAP

As Late As Possible

ALAP

Earliest Available Time

EAT

Latest Available Time

LAT

Start No Earlier Than

SNET

Start No Later Than

SNLT

Finish No Earlier Than

FNET

Finish No Later Than

FNLT

Must Start On

MSO

Must Finish On

MFO

Fixed Dates

FIXT

Understanding Default Constraint Preferences

When you create new tasks, the Task Constraint is automatically selected by Workfront. 

Two variables are deciding what Task Constraint is selected by default for a new task:

  • The Project Schedule From field on the project.
    For more information about the Project Schedule From field, see "Editing Projects."
  • The When I create a new task, set the Start Date preference configured by your system administrator in the Tasks & Issues Preferences area of Setup.
    For more information about Tasks & Issues Preferences, see the "New Task Defaults" section in "Tasks and Issues Preferences."

The following table shows the default Task Constraint when choosing different variables for your project and your new tasks:

Project Schedule From Task Start Date Task Constraint Default
Start Date Based on the Project Planned Date As Soon As Possible
Start Date Today Start No Earlier Than
Completion Date Based on the Project Planned Date As Late as Possible
Completion Date Today Start No Later Than