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resources using the Visual Reporting facilities that we have in Project 2010, Customization,. Import and ... Now apart from Customizing the Ribbon, you can also Customize the Quick Access Tool Bar which is ...... lag on the start, so that enough analysis and design work has been done here before the test script work starts ...
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Learn Project 2010 Advanced

Table of Contents Chapter 1 – Introduction Introduction to Project 2010 Advanced ...................................................................5 Review of the Basics ................................................................................................8 Chapter 2 – Scheduling Scheduling..............................................................................................................13 Calendar .................................................................................................................19 Critical Path ...........................................................................................................23 Chapter 3 – Resources Resource Calendar .................................................................................................28 Task Types .............................................................................................................32 General Resource Features ....................................................................................37 Assigning Resources to Tasks ...............................................................................42 Generic and Budget Resources ..............................................................................46 Overcoming Resourcing Problems & Resource Leveling .....................................51 Overcoming Resourcing Problems – Part 2 ...........................................................56 Chapter 4 – Costs Cost Resource Types & Assigning Costs ..............................................................61 Defining Costs .......................................................................................................67 Baselining & Tracking Costs .................................................................................71 Tracking Costs Continued......................................................................................76

Earned Value ..........................................................................................................79 Reporting Options ..................................................................................................84 Chapter 5 – Consolidation of Projects Dividing Project into Parts .....................................................................................89 Combining Projects ................................................................................................93 Links & Dependencies between Projects ...............................................................98 Sharing Resources & Issues with Leveling .........................................................103 Chapter 6 – Visual Reports Creating and Modifying Reports .........................................................................108 Other Reports, Customizing Reports & Creating New Report Templates ..........113 Chapter 7 – Customization Customizing the Workspace ................................................................................119 Custom Fields ......................................................................................................124 Custom Fields Relating to Tasks .........................................................................128 Customizing Tables, Views & Reports ................................................................131 Chapter 8 – Macros Basics of Programming with VBA ......................................................................135 Writing Code for Macros .....................................................................................140 Detailed Codes .....................................................................................................146 Creating New Macros – Part 1 .............................................................................151 Creating New Macros – Part 2 .............................................................................156

Chapter 9 – Importing and Exporting Importing and Exporting – Basics .......................................................................159 Export Projects & Customizing Exports ..............................................................164 Importing Data .....................................................................................................168 Chapter 10 – Conclusion Course Conclusion ...............................................................................................172

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Chapter 1 – Introduction Video: Introduction to Project 2010 Advanced Toby: Hello and welcome to this course on Microsoft Project 2010 Advanced. My name is Toby and I’m going to be your instructor on this course. And I’m going to begin by talking about what you need to know before you start. Now I’m going to be assuming that you are a user who is comfortable with Project 2010; that you’ve pretty much used all of the most usual features, that you have scheduled some projects, you know about Tasks, Resources, Views, Reports, and so on; you understand the different types of costs, the different types of Resources, and you should really have a good, broad, and deep knowledge of all of the basic features of Project 2010. If your knowledge is in Project 2007, you should still be okay. Obviously you’ll be changing up to 2010 to follow this course properly, but your background knowledge in 2007 will probably be adequate for the purposes of doing the 2010 Advanced Course. If your experience is with an earlier version, Project 2003 or earlier, you’ll probably find it a bit too much of a struggle to come straight through to 2010 Advanced from there; not least because of the Ribbon Interface that you may well not be familiar with, but also the number of changes from 2003 to 2010, in general, is really quite substantial and you’d be better off either doing our 2010 Basic Course, which you can also get via Simon Sez IT or working your way towards that perhaps with getting a version of 2010 and just making sure that you can do all of the basic things that you normally do with your earlier version with a 2010 version. So, our starting point is really the course information and content which is in the basic course and that you’ve used that, you’re comfortable with it and you pretty much understand it all. The version of Project that I’m going to be using on this course is Project Professional 2010. There is another version, Project Standard 2010, and if you have access to that you’re going to be absolutely fine on this course. There will be a couple of differences and I’ll talk to you about those in just a moment. But either Project Professional 2010 or Project Standard 2010 will be fine for this course.

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Now you may also be aware of a product called Project Server 2010. Project Server 2010 is really a Server side product which is particularly used for enterprise resource planning and for collaboration between projects and project managers particularly when they’re sharing resources. We’re not really going to cover Project Server 2010 on this course. I will mention it from time to time because a couple of aspects of it are quite important in relation to the advanced use of Project, but really it will only be a mention. You may also be aware that the newer version, the 2010 version of Share Point Foundation and Share Point Server, also has facilities that support Microsoft Project, but again the Server side products are not significantly going to cover on this course although I will mention them from time to time. Now there are quite a few differences between recent versions of Project. As I mentioned before, if you are a user of Project 2007 or Project 2010, you should be absolutely fine on this course. There is information available from the Microsoft website, which is what we’re looking at, at the moment; a version comparison document, which you can download, which gives you a lot of detail about the differences between 2003, 2007, and 2010. So you may find that information useful. On this particular page of Product Information and Version Comparison there’s also a link to an Addition Comparison. Now the Addition Comparison covers the main points of difference between Project Standard 2010 and Project Professional 2010. As you can see, the main blocks we’ve got here are the same. The two main areas of difference relate to, in the first case, Resource Management where there are some additional features in Professional and I will try to point those out as we go; but the main area of difference is this one, is easier Collaboration. Now this relates to the things I was mentioning just now about Share Point and Project Server and since we’re only really briefly touching on those in this course, the differences are not significant. So, largely speaking this is the main area where there are differences between the two versions. Although that won’t greatly affect you if you’re using a Project Standard 2010 copy to follow this course. So by now you should know whether you’ve got a suitable version of Project 2010 to use. You should have a good idea of whether your background knowledge is going to be strong enough for you to do this Advanced Course. Just one other thing to cover and that is the structure of the course. It’s basically a course that’s in two halves. In the first half I’m going to use two or three sample projects to take you through some of the more advanced features; things that you may not © Copyright 2008-2012 Simon Sez IT, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

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all ready be aware of. I’m going to build those up in layers, as you’ll know if you viewed Project for a while, it can get pretty complicated at times so I’m going to try to, even with the more advanced topics, introduce things a step at a time. And then in the second half of the course I’m going to look at a few important specific features. These include multiple projects and sharing resources using the Visual Reporting facilities that we have in Project 2010, Customization, Import and Export, and we’re going to have a look at Macros, VBA for Microsoft Project. So I think it’s about time we got started.

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Video: Review of the Basics Toby: Hello and welcome to this section on some of the basic set-up requirements for Project 2010. As I assume that you have a reasonable knowledge of using the 2010 workspace, I’m only really here going to look at the most essential points; perhaps one or two that you may have missed and some of the ones that we’re going to need early on in the course. One of the most obvious features of the Workspace for Project 2010 is the Ribbon. You may have had a chance to experiment with Customizing the Ribbon. You may or may not Minimize the Ribbon, which is done using this little arrow up here and particularly when we need a little bit more space to work, click that to Minimize. It then becomes an upturn arrow which enables you to Maximize it again. If you then want to use one of the Tabs, such as say the Project Tabs, click on that. For that moment the Ribbon becomes visible again and then if you choose a particular command such as Project Information. Note that the Ribbon disappears again until we’ve done what we want to do, click Cancel, still disappeared. To bring it back again just click on the down arrow and there it is. Let’s look at one or two other important aspects of the Workspace. At the bottom we have the Status Bar and with the Status Bar we can enable and disable features by right clicking on the Status Bar and then selecting which items we want displayed or monitored. At the right hand end of the Status Bar we have the Zoom Slider and a set of buttons that enable us to switch between a number of views. So, for instance, this view is Gantt Chart. If I click on Task Usage I can go through the various Task and Resource Views that are available to me. The Slider enables me to use either dragging of the Slider or the plus and minus buttons for more or less detail in my view of the Gantt Chart in the horizontal direction. Now apart from Customizing the Ribbon, you can also Customize the Quick Access Tool Bar which is up in the top left here. We’ll look at this in little bit more detail later on, but basically there’s a standard set of buttons, as you probably know. You can enable and disable those buttons by checking and un-checking them and if you want something that’s not amongst that group of standard ones click on More Commands and you get a full facility to customize the Quick Access Tool Bar. In terms of Views in general and the reason I’m emphasizing this here is a lot of the time on this course we’re going to be switching between different Views of a

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project. Apart from those four buttons at the bottom and the use of some of the options on the Ribbon that you’ll be used to, you may wonder where the old View Bar has gone. If you haven’t found it yet it is still there. If you right click on the gray bar on the left here, this is effectively a way of switching between a large number of available Views, but if you click on View Bar, the very bottom option, you get the old style View Bar which is a nice visual way of switching between the different ways of looking at your project. Quite simply right click again, uncheck, and the View Bar has gone. I’d just like to mention a couple of other things about the Ribbon. You have several buttons on the Ribbon that are actually in two parts. So, for instance, this Gantt Chart button here has got a top part and a lower part. They in effect can do the same thing, but one is a one shot version and one is a version with a selection. So, for instance, if I’m in Gantt Chart view like this and I want to go into Task Usage View, which is also a two part button; if I click the top part of Task Usage View I go into Task Usage with a standard view split vertically into two halves. If I click on the lower part I have a little Menu to choose from. So I can either stick with or disable Task Usage, reset to Default, Save View, More View. So I have a set there that I can choose from. So if I wanted to go back to Gantt Chart View; if I click the lower half of the Gantt Chart button I get the Menu to choose from. If I click the top part it just goes back into Gantt Chart View. And one final point which I hope you’ll be fully aware of is that with some of the groups on some of the Tabs you have a little button in the bottom right hand corner, very small. It’s called a Dialog Box Launcher. This is the Dialog Box Launcher on the Task Tabs in the Font group and if I click on that I bring up a full Dialog with all of the options related to Font available to me. I can then make any changes, click OK, or I can Cancel. Now we’re going to look at some of the important options that you’re going to need to be aware of for this course. Into Backstage View, click on Options, the general set of options, pretty straight forward, Color Scheme, whether you want Screen Tip shown, what the Default View is, User Name and Initials, and so on. On the Display options one or two of these are going to be quite important later on, but we got Calendar, Symbol for Currency, the currency we’re using and so on. Right at the bottom of these options there is one Entry Bar. Now if you’ve been using 2010 for a while, you may think that there is no equivalent to the earlier Excel style Entry Bar. Well there is in fact, it’s just disabled by Default. So if I click Entry Bar here, click on OK, © Copyright 2008-2012 Simon Sez IT, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

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the Entry Bar appears and if I’m in a Field within a project such as a Task Name Field where I want to be able to enter or edit data, click in there, and I’ve got the normal Excel type Entry Bar available to me. I’m going to leave that switched on for now. So let’s run through the other important options again. We have Schedule options which we’re going to be looking at in quite a bit of detail on this course. This is to do with how we schedule Tasks, how we decide what the Default settings when we’re scheduling tasks are and so on. So we’re going to cover these in a great amount of detail later on. Proofing Options you should be fairly familiar with anyway in terms of how you’ve got your Spelling, Dictionaries, and so on set up. I’m not really going to be covering those in any great amount of detail; consider those to be a fairly basic aspect of using Project. Save gives us Default Format for saving projects and so on. We’ll pick out one or two aspects of this a little bit later on. Similarly Language; I’m going to be using English. Advanced. We have a number of Advanced options and quite a few of these we’ll be coming back to later; specifically things in relation to Costs and so on. Many of the Display ones we won’t be dealing with in detail. Again, I consider them to be fairly basic knowledge on Project 2010, but a few of them we’ll come back to and particularly ones related to Calculation. Customize Ribbon, Quick Access Tool Bar, we talked about briefly before. Again, I’ll come back to those in a little while. Add-Ins relates to additional facilities you can actually apply, some available from Microsoft, some of them are available from other sources. And the Trust Center is concerned with the security and health of your projects. Again, I’ll mention those a little bit later on as well. But there we have the main access to the various options you need when you’re working with Project. What we’re going to look at next though is the question of the Customization. Now when it comes to customizing the Ribbon the facilities in Project 2010 are really very good. One of the situations that sometimes arise is that you’re working on a project; you have a lot of maybe fairly repetitive tasks to perform. What you might want to do is to move the Commands or Groups of Commands that you use most often all together to save you constantly switching between Tabs. Now to help you to do this with Project 2010 you can not only put your own Commands on the Ribbon and give links to things like Macros, which we’re going to look at later on in the course, but you can create your own Groups with Standard Commands in them. You can Copy Standard Groups to other Tabs. You can even create your own Tab. And if you © Copyright 2008-2012 Simon Sez IT, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

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want to do this, the procedure with Project 2010 is actually pretty straight forward. I’ll give you a brief demonstration of the main points here and then I’ll leave you to work out the rest of it for yourself. If I go into, back into Backstage View, into Options, Customize Ribbon. Bear in mind that the Tabs on the right here, I’ve actually got seven showing here, they’re all enabled on mine. You may well find on your installation that Developer in particular is not checked. It’s very often not shown by Default. This is the one we’re going to be using in relation to Macros later on so I’m going to leave it switched on. But these are only the main Tabs. There is a whole set of what are effectively context sensitive Tabs, the Tool Tabs that go with whatever View you’ve got in place. So, for instance, the Gantt Chart Tools have a Format Tabs, the Calendar Tools Format Tabs, and so on. So you can Customize these as well; each of these has groups with Commands in and so on. Just for the moment I’m going to stick with the main Tabs. If I want a new Tab, let’s suppose I want to introduce a new Tab, it comes in with a new name of New Tab, a Default name and it’s got a new Group Custom in it. So if I click on that new Tab and click Rename; I’m going to call it, we’ll just use my name, we’ll call it “Toby.” And then if I want to say there’s a Group on that Tab, I’m going to rename the group and call it “Toby Tools.” There we are and click on OK. And now having created the Tab and the Group, if I want to add say something like Font, click that, select the Font Tool, click on Add. That now appears in my Customized Group. Now if I wanted to move a whole Group onto that, I could do that as well; various ways of doing that. For instance, if I want to take this Group here and I just want to Copy it down to my new Tab, I can literally drag it down and drop it there. Now note it’s moved from there. I’m going to put it back in a moment. Click on OK and let’s see what we’ve got. There’s my Toby Tab. It’s got two groups. It’s got the Toby Tools group, the one I invented with the Font Command in it, which is actually a dropdown so that I choose Font from those available and it’s got the Group Tasks, the whole Group from the original Task Tab. So it’s as easy as that to Customize the Ribbon on Project 2010. Let’s take a brief look at the Output Formats for Project 2010. Again, you should be pretty familiar with these. If I’ve got a project such as this one and do File, Save As, I will normally save in the project .mpp format. This is actually the same format, extension I should say, that it has been since the very early days of Microsoft Project. Of course the format itself has changed so you cannot in a very old copy of Microsoft Project open a new .mpp file, but you can in a new copy save in one of the older formats. So, for instance, if you say Save As .mpp Project, that’s © Copyright 2008-2012 Simon Sez IT, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

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the latest format, the 2010 format. There’s a 2007 format and a 2000-2003 format, although they all have the same extension of .mpp. Template Format has a Default extension of .mpt for the 2010 and then for the 2007, again, .mpt. You can also save a project as a .pdf file now. That gives you basically a representation of the View; in this case the Gantt Chart View as a .pdf file. You can save it in .xps format or in one of these Excel formats, text formats, .csv and so on. We’re going to have a reason to use one or two of these later on in the course, but I’ll assume that you’re pretty familiar with the basic formats that you’re likely to use. Now I’m sure you’re familiar with getting help from Project. Press F1 to bring up Help or if you’re in Backstage View of course you have access to Help here. And if you’re online you’ve got Microsoft Office Help available to you. There’s also offline help available if you don’t have internet access at the time. And just going back to Options for very briefly for a moment. With the Options one of the ones that I mentioned was Save before and in relation to the file formats that we just looked at, this is the Default Format here, .mpp. If you’re actually constantly working in a situation where you need to save and work on projects in one of the older formats, you can actually set that here as your Default Format. I’m going to stick to 2010 Format. Your Default File location, you can obviously change. Similarly your Default Template location you can change. And of course you may want to switch on Auto Save which will save every X minutes and you can set X at defaults to 10 minutes. So I think we’ve covered all of the basic aspects we need to get started and what we’re going to look at first is Scheduling. So, I’ll see you in the next section.

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Chapter 2 – Scheduling Video: Scheduling Toby: Hello and welcome to the first of three units on Scheduling. Now I’m going to build up the coverage of advanced topics in Microsoft Project effectively in layers and I’m starting with Scheduling. While I’m looking at Scheduling I’m going to pay very little attention to Resources and Costs. And in fact in the next group of units after this one I’ll look at Resources and then after that I’ll introduce a lot more of the theory and concepts of Costs. The other thing to be aware of is that I’m sure from your own experience of project management and the use of Microsoft Project, you know that with very big, long projects it’s actually quite difficult to see what’s going on sometimes. So for a lot of the theory and covering a lot of the basic principles that you need in Microsoft Project, I tend to use quite small projects most of the time. They’ll illustrate virtually all of the points I need to illustrate and you’ll be able to pretty much see everything in view while I’m doing it. We will of course get into some longer projects when we’re looking at accumulative information and so on over long periods of time, but for most of this a project like the one you can see in front of you is quite adequate to illustrate, introduce, demonstrate all of the advanced topics that you need to be aware of. Now we’re going to start with the most fundamental aspects of Scheduling. You should be aware of most of these but I need to cover two or three very important ones that you may not have had a lot of exposure to. So, look at Project Information and within Project Information we’ll start with Schedule From. Now many people, particularly people who perhaps haven’t worked in a lot of different areas in the field of project management will always Schedule from a project start date. So basically I’m starting to build this house, for example, when will it be finished? But there are many situations when you actually have a date you need to be finished by and you need to know when to start. Now if you’re in that situation, you would select here Project Finish Date as the date you need to end by. And in this case, for example, if I said my end date was the 1st of September 2012 then it would tell me when I needed to start. Now if I’ve got Schedule from Project Finish Date, the Finish Date I can Edit and the Start Date Microsoft Project will tell me. If I’ve got Project Start Date, the Start Date I can Edit and the Finish Date Microsoft Project will tell me. So that’s the first fundamental thing you need to be aware of. You can Schedule either way. © Copyright 2008-2012 Simon Sez IT, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

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Now let’s look at some of the other useful Fields in this Dialog. Current Date Defaults to today and it actually determines the Date at which you’re looking at, effectively the condition of your project. And you can actually set that to any Date you like. So if you want to look at things as they were say two or three months ago or if you want to look at things as they should in a few weeks time, you can actually select a different Date. So I wanted to look at how this project will look in say the middle of March, I can click on OK and my View and everything to do with the status of my project will be as of that Date. Now you should be aware of the fact that this vertical line here specifically points at the Date. So this tells you which date you’re looking at the project on. Now by Default that’s set to today and at any time you can go back in and set it back to today again. That’s a very useful way of looking at the project in the past or the future. And another very useful one is the Status Date. Now you normally would use the Status Date only after you’ve saved a project base line and what the Status Date is used for is to cover a situation where quite often when you’re entering status information or tracking information on a project, you won’t entering it on the date it actually happened. And if you want to update status information for a particular date, you can set this to that date merely by clicking on the dropdown and choosing a date. So if I wanted to enter timesheets for say the very beginning of this week, I could set it to the beginning at this week and then enter my status information. By Default the Status Date is set to today and it’s actually very important that you get the Status Date Field right because this, the values you enter against the Status Date are used in earned value calculations and can tell you information about general cost and other progress more accurately. So you should try to make sure that you’re Status Date is always set correctly. And next in this Dialogue we have Calendar. Now the project Calendar is very important and again if you’ve only worked in a restricted number of application areas or in perhaps a small number of projects, you may always have used a Standard Calendar, but it’s worth bearing in mind that the Standard Calendar is very much a sort of idealized one and even if you’ve managed hundreds of projects there will have been very few which use exactly the Calendar that comes with Microsoft Project. So it’s useful to know how to modify the Standard Calendar and a good general approach is to have a Base Calendar and to work from that for each project and within projects to work on specific Calendars for say various Resources. Now we’re going to be looking at Calendars a little bit later on in this unit. I’m going to stick with the Standard © Copyright 2008-2012 Simon Sez IT, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

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Calendar for now. But even with a basic choice you might have something like a 24-hour calendar, a night shift calendar, standard calendar and so on. We’ll stick with Standard for now and come back to the question of the Calendar a little bit later on. Now the final Field in the top half of this Dialog is Priority. And this is Project Priority. And this is used when you are Scheduling multiple projects to share Resources. Now by setting the Priority higher than the Default of 500, so I could perhaps set it say to, for my most important project, at 760 or something. Whenever there’s a conflict with other projects that all have a Default or a lower Priority, this project wins out. So if three or four projects all want the same Resource, they want a particular person available on a particular day, this project will win. And this is a way of making sure that one of your projects within your program of work gets Priority over the others. Now apart from the basic project information you should be familiar with everything in the Project Options section on Scheduling here.

But I’m going to just look at two or three

particularly important ones in case you’re not familiar with exactly what they mean. I’m going to come back to Calendar in a little while, so let’s look at first of all Schedule, do you want to show scheduling messages? I have this switched on virtually all of the time. It does get a bit annoying sometimes, depending on what you’re doing. Sometimes I switch it off I’m just putting on a load of tasks and I want to worry about Scheduling later on. Most of the time I have it switched on. But the most important ones is this little group here because we have basic choices. When we create new tasks, do they by Default take on the property Auto-Scheduled or Manually Scheduled? Now that’s something we’re going to look at in a lot more detail in just a moment. I’m going to leave it set at Auto-Scheduled. When I add new Tasks, Auto-Scheduled Tasks, do they by Default get Scheduled on the Project Start Date or the Current Date, today’s date normally? Duration, by Default is set here to enter it in days. Now if you have a very, very short project you may want to reduce the unit for Duration. If you’ve got a project that’s may several years long, you may want to put the Duration in weeks or months. Again, you should be familiar with changing Durations and similarly amounts of work, Defaults to hours, but you might want to record it in Minutes, Days, Weeks, or Months as well or instead. And the Default Task Types, we’re going to come back to in a later unit. You should be familiar with these, Fixed Units, Fixed Duration, Fixed Work. I mentioned right at the beginning of this section that © Copyright 2008-2012 Simon Sez IT, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

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I’m really not going to worry too much about Resources and Costs yet, so I’m going to go into a great discussion of these now. And then Calculation Mode is also very important. Do you want Project to actually effectively Schedule as you go or do you want to Manually Schedule at points in time selected by you? So I’m going to leave that set at On for now. If I set it for Off then it wouldn’t try to do any Scheduling for me or Calculation for me as I go and I would actually manually calculate at points that suit me. I usually have this set to On, but again if I’m entering a load of tasks I may temporarily switch it off and then come back and switch it back On again later on. So let’s look at the difference between Auto-Scheduling and Manual Scheduling. Manual Scheduling was introduced in Project 2010 and it offers a couple of very useful facilities. You don’t really need to use it, but in a couple of situations it can be very useful and I’m going to demonstrate one of those situations with a simple example here in this small project. Let’s suppose I want to add three or four new Tasks to the project. If you look at the display on the Status Bar at the moment it says that new Tasks are Auto-Scheduled, which was of course one of my project options. If I click on that and actually change it to Manually Scheduled, watch what happens when I add some new Tasks. I’m just going to give names; going to call that one “Task A,” press Enter. The next one “Task B,” press Enter; “Task C,” and so on. Now these Tasks, you may be surprised to notice there is no bar on the Gantt Chart for any one of those. And Manual Tasks, Manually Scheduled Tasks I may provide no information about at all. It doesn’t get a Default duration, no bar and so on. And where this is useful, there are really two situations, one of them is when you’re first working on a project you may want to just enter all of the Tasks in, you want to arrange them into Groups, you may want to experiment with different Layouts and so on. And as you’ll know if you’ve used Project for a while, okay you can switch off Scheduling messages and things, but there’s still quite a lot of goes on in the background. If all you want to do is to get the list of Tasks in this can be very useful. The other situation in which people are finding it very useful is where you’re perhaps working on a very long project and you’ve got some Tasks way off in the future. You don’t really have any detail of the Schedule, Resourcing, Costing or anything, but you just want to show a Task at some point in the future and pretty much remind yourself that it’s there without putting in very much information at all. So, for instance, with Task A if I put in a duration of say 10 days, then I get a block that appears. Although notice this block actually looks quite different from the others and then I can move that © Copyright 2008-2012 Simon Sez IT, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

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block around because it’s Manually Scheduled. If I do a Re-schedule of the whole project it won’t be affected. It will just basically stay where I’ve put it as a sort of aid memoire that that particular Task or Group of Tasks exists. If at any time I want to change that Task back to being Automatically Scheduled then I can. Now when it comes to changing the scheduling between Auto and Manual, a couple of things, important things to be aware of; one of them is if I right click on this Task, one of the options that comes up is Auto-Schedule, watch what happens to the Task if I change it to Auto-Schedule. It drops back here and of course it’s Scheduled from the beginning of the project. Now if I wanted to change that, if I wanted to actually leave it where it was but change it from Manually Scheduled to Auto-Scheduled I would have to do something else. Now I’m going to Undo that change, put it back the way it was and I’m going to go back into Options again, back into Scheduling. There’s an important little option down here. In the bottom of the Scheduling options for this project, there’s one down here: Keep Task on nearest working day when changing to Automatically Scheduled Mode. So bear in mind if you were actually taking the approach of putting in some Manually Scheduled Tasks and then at the appropriate point changing them back to Auto-Scheduling, if you wanted to basically keep the schedule you had manually created provided you’ve got this option set, I’ll click on OK, watch what happens now when I change that back to Auto-Schedule Mode. This time it stays where it is. And if I can actually go into the Task Information for this Task you’ll see why. And the reason is that it actually when Project converts the type, provided you’ve got the option I just showed you set, it puts in a constraint and the constraint will actually make it stay in this position. Of course it may get automatically scheduled to a different position, subject to Resourcing and other factors that I might introduce later on. But basically what Project does initially is to put it at the Date where it was when it was Manually Scheduled. Now with Project 2010 we can switch Tasks between Manually and Automatically Scheduled Modes and as you’ve seen we can also set a Default accordingly. One thing to mention on the Defaults, by the way, if I go back into Options again and look at the Schedule section, these on the Scheduling Options for the current project, the ACME Proposed Implementation Project, there is also in this drop down as I hope you’ll have realized by now an All New Projects set of settings. So if for all new projects you want a particular setting, like this one, about converting © Copyright 2008-2012 Simon Sez IT, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

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to Automatic Schedule Mode on, you can actually set that for all new projects as well as setting it, of course, for individual projects as well. Now I’ve all ready found Manual Scheduling Mode useful on my projects and I hope you will too. In the next section, we’re going to look at Calendars and we’re going to look at how we spot when there’s something wrong with a Schedule. So please join me for that.

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Video: Calendar Toby:

Hello and welcome to this second unit on Scheduling in Microsoft Project 2010

Advanced. I’ve got this straight forward project. I’ve actually introduced a new Task, actually a Manually Scheduled Task which is here, “Consultancy Review.” And what I’m going to do now is to Save a Baseline. I’m basically quite happy with this Schedule now. It starts in early January, goes through to the 1st of September. So what I’m going to do is Save a Baseline. So, as usual, on the Project Tab go to Set Baseline and this is the first Baseline I’ve set. It’s going to set it for the entire project, click on OK; in the usual way I’ve got my Baseline set. Now what I’m going to do because I don’t really want to get involved in Resources and Costs and things at the moment, is I’m going to do something to upset my Schedule. And the thing I’m going to do to upset my Schedule is I’m going to change the Project Calendar and I’m going to decide that the people working on this project have got to do it on the basis of working a fourday week, Monday through Thursday. And we’ll see what effect that has on my Schedule. Now of course each of my Resources could have their own Calendars and we’re going to look at that in a later unit, but I’m really going to change the whole Project Calendar here. So I’ll go into Change Working Time. At the moment this project uses the Standard Project Calendar and I’m not going to change the Standard Project Calendar at all. So what I need to do is to make a Copy. So top right, Create New Calendar. I don’t want to Create a new Base Calendar, I want to make a Copy of the Standard one. I’m not going to call it “Copy of Standard,” I’m going to call it “Four-day Week” and that’s going to be a Copy of the Standard Calendar. So click on OK and I’m now looking at my four-day week schedule. Now what I want to do is to actually change this Calendar so that it only involves working time from Monday through to Thursday. Now within in the Change Working Time Dialog, there are two Tabs in the lower half. There’s a Tab where I can set up exceptions such as work holidays or particular whole days or blocks of time that it won’t be possible to work on the project. Or I can change a work week. And in fact on this occasion I’m going to change a work week. So if I click on Work Weeks and then click on the Details Dialog, I’ve given the opportunity of going through the seven days of the week and changing the working time. Now let’s look at Friday; I can say Use Project Default times for these days, Set days to non-working time, or Set days to these specific working times. Now © Copyright 2008-2012 Simon Sez IT, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

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if for instance I wanted to finish early on a Friday and say nobody works on Friday afternoons, I could literally just Delete this second row of working time from 2 p.m. to 6 p.m., but I’m actually going to make Friday’s non-working times. So I’m going to select that one of the radio buttons, click on OK, and now you can see on the little pictogram here is showing Working Week, gray for Friday’s and the key Legend on the left says this is non-working time. So my new Calendar four-day week now has non-working time on a Friday. Click OK. Now all I need to do is go back into my Project Information, the Calendar in the Project Information still says Standard. So let’s change it to “Four-day Week,” click on OK, and straight away you can see I’ve now got a major problem because I fixed my end-date at September the 1st. But of course all of the Tasks are now over-running because people are only able to work on my project for four days a week. So you can see the sort of problems that apply in the new calendar has caused in this Schedule. I’m going to look at different ways of identifying and inspecting those problems in just a moment, but before I do just a brief word about Calendars. Sometimes people find it quite difficult to manage the Calendars related to specific projects or all their projects. It’s actually quite straightforward. If you go to the View Tab, under Other Views there is an option More Views and on More Views there is an Organizer button. If you click on Organizer, one of the Tabs here is Calendars and it actually shows you all the Calendars available in your Global Microsoft Project Template and in individual project.

So here I’ve still got the Standard

Calendar of course that I started out with. I could actually remove that if I wanted to and just work with my four-day week calendar, but it’s really quite straightforward to manage the Calendars using that facility. So that’s one or two of the basics. What I’ve now done is to revert back to the original Project Calendar for a short time.

So we’re back to everything seeming to fit okay, but on the

Consultancy Review task, the Manually Scheduled one, what I’ve done is to extend it to 10 days and to give it a couple of Successor tasks. So my Schedule still basically fits with the old Calendar but what I’m now going to do is to apply the Four-day Week Calendar again. Now go back into Project Information, choose the Four-day Week Calendar again, click on OK, and now I’m back to the fact that the project no longer fits by my end-date. But now what I want to do is

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to look at some of the facilities that are available within Project 2010 to at least see what the problems here are. Now we’re going to concentrate on identifying and resolving these scheduling issues in the next unit, but in this unit I want to introduce a couple of things that you may well not have seen before and particularly one or two things in relation to Manually Scheduled Tasks. With the Manually Scheduled Task here, Consultancy Review, let me just drag this over to the right and this particular entry here under the Finish Date has got a squiggly line, it’s actually a squiggly red line underneath the date and this implies that Project can give me some ideas of how I might resolve this particular problem. And if I hover over there, right click, one of the options on the Context Menu is Fix End Task Inspector. Now whether you’ve used Task Inspector or not before, let me just quickly go over that with you, Task Inspector is a tool whereby, where actually is a Successor to the older Task Driver which was introduced in Project 2007 and it provides information about some of the factors affecting the selected Task. What this does in addition is that it not only gives you information about the Task, but it also makes some suggestions at how you might resolve some problems with Scheduling. Now the information in the Task Inspector on the left basically there’s sort of warning, the important notes at the top, then there are some repair options, and then there are some other factors affecting the Task documented at the bottom. Now if we start at the top you may in this situation regard this to be a fairly obvious piece of information, but basically by changing the Calendar to a four-day week we can no longer respect the Start Date for this Task. This is a Manually Scheduled Task, so Project 2010 hasn’t re-scheduled it, but it has flagged the fact that we may need to delay the start by nine days. Now one option then, the first repair option, is Respect Links from Predecessors Tasks. If I click on Respect Links here then it will actually respect that link and move the Task to the right. The second option is to switch it to being Auto-Scheduled and if I switch it to AutoScheduled it will pretty much treat it the same way that it’s treated all of the others. So I’m actually going to choose the second option on this occasion and I’m going to switch this Task to being Auto-Scheduled, but I’m not going to do it in any of the ways we’ve seen before. I’m going to point out something that you may all ready noticed and that is that on the Task Tab there is a group called Tasks and two big buttons which enable you to switch between Manually Scheduled and Auto-Scheduled. So if I click on Auto-Schedule, I will Auto-Schedule that Task. Now that has, of course, immediately resolved the problem as far as that Task is concerned. It © Copyright 2008-2012 Simon Sez IT, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

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hasn’t actually helped with the overall project because all it means it’s become a little bit more difficult to respect my ultimate end-date. So in this section we’ve looked at how to create a Calendar and apply a new Calendar to a project. We’ve used that as a way of showing how you can get Scheduling issues independently of any Resourcing issues and we’ve seen with particular reference to Manually Scheduled Tasks some of the facilities provided in Project 2010, including the new Task Inspector. Now in terms of looking at Scheduling issues in a broader sense one of the most important factors we need to look at is the Critical Path and in terms of identifying and resolving issues with the Scheduling of a project, that’s what we’re going to concentrate on in the next unit. So, I’ll see you then.

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Video: Critical Path Toby: Hello and welcome to this third unit on advanced aspects of Scheduling in Microsoft Project 2010. We’re going to start by looking at the Critical Path which I assume you’re all ready pretty familiar with, but I’m going to show you some particular aspects of its use in Project 2010 and also discuss some of the ways in which we can approach shortening the Critical Path for a project which is normally the most direct and most flexible route for shortening a project. Now before we go into this, just one thing to mention. In general terms, shortening a project tends to be a good idea; it tends to save money and it tends to be what people need to do. You Schedule a project with a particular end-date in mind, you miss the end-date by a few weeks or months or days and then you’re job really is to bring it back to within a Schedule that is acceptable. So that’s about shortening the length of the project. Now that isn’t always the best thing to do.

Sometimes shortening the length makes the Cost of the project much more

expensive than it would have been and sometimes taking the cost of a delay can be less than the Cost of shortening the project. So that’s always something that’s worth bearing in mind. But for the purposes of this unit we’re going to assume that shortening the project is a good thing and as I said we’re going to start with the Critical Path. Now as I’m sure you know, the Critical Path shows the tasks in a project that must be completed on schedule for the whole project to finish on schedule. And the Tasks in the Critical Path are usually referred to as the Critical Tasks. This particular project which we were looking at before, we now have scheduling issues and I’m going to start to address those now. But in order to identify where to look at to solve the problems, it’s useful to able to see the Critical Tasks. Now there are a number of ways of doing this in Project 2010. You’ve probably come across a few of them yourself, but one very simple one when you’re in Gantt Chart View like this, on the Format Tab, right in the middle there in the Bar Styles Group there is a check box for Critical Tasks and if I click that it identifies the Critical Tasks for me. In fact, this project only has three Tasks, down here the ones which are currently colored blue; they’re the only three which are not Critical Tasks. So this is quite a straightforward way of highlighting the Critical Tasks. You can, of course, change the Formatting. The Format Tab for Gantt Chart Tools includes a button Format and one

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of the items that drops down from there is Bar Styles. If I just scroll down towards the end there is Critical Task here and I can see the formatting here on the bar, the color is the red here which I could of course change if I wanted to. I’m going to stick with that red. And I could put Shapes on the end if I wanted to. So, for instance, I could put an asterisk at each end if I wanted to make it maybe a little bit more visible and then my Critical Tasks appear with the asterisks at the end. And I’m sure you’re familiar with using those Formatting options. So I’m just going to Undo that and go back to the Standard one. Now this approach, of course, works well in a small project like this one, but if you have a project with perhaps hundreds or thousands of Tasks and maybe only a few of them are Critical, if you imagine just the odd red bar here and there down very many pages of Tasks, it’s not a particularly practical way of working with the Critical ones. So on the View Menu, one of the options you have there is to apply a Filter and if you want to apply a Filter, it’s one of the ones in the Data Group and it’s one of the Standard ones. So you can Create new Filters and so on down here, but one of the ones of course is Critical and if you choose that one then you only see the Critical Tasks. Now once you can see the Critical Tasks you can then look at the overall strategy you’re going to use in order to get the project back on schedule. And there are basically two approaches and you will often use both of them and you may use one of the approaches with some of the Tasks and the other one with some of the others. And the two approaches are these; first of all reduce the length of each of the Tasks. Secondly, overlap them more. And between those two things you should, if it’s possible to get the project schedule back in shape, you should be able to achieve that. Now I’m going to look at each of those two separately in a moment, but before I do it’s just worth mentioning one thing. Even though technically it’s straight forward to go into a project like this one and half something or overlap something, the consideration really is the business, the practical consideration. Let me give you a very specific example of this. The first Task here is the Tendering Process and Contract. And most of the projects I’ve ever worked on, the aim is to get Tendering Process and Contract complete before we do any work on the project. We don’t want to start work before we’ve even got the job. However, in one or two instances how it happened in this situation where because the job wouldn’t fit otherwise, a decision has had to be taken at the right level in the organization to start work before the contract has been won. Now, © Copyright 2008-2012 Simon Sez IT, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

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obviously this carries a lot of risk, potentially we’re going to quite a lot of work and then we don’t even get the contract and we have to throw that work away and lose the money we’ve spent on it. But sometimes it’s the only way to make a contract and a project fit together. Now that is a bit of a rare example but it gives an example of the sort of consideration that comes in. This may also apply to some of these other Tasks. There is a certain amount of work we want to get even if it isn’t all of it. Certain part we need to get done before we start the next Task and there will always be very important business, practical considerations here that are going to override the technical considerations of whether we can physically make it fit. So let’s now look at those two ways, those two approaches for reducing the Critical Path or at least in this case, making the Critical Path fit. In terms of reducing the Duration of a Task there are really three main approaches. One of them is to re-assess the estimates and in some cases be a little bit more optimistic about things. So we’ve got a Task here which we’ve set as 60 days. Let’s look at that estimate again and see if it really will take 60 days. Now part of that is very much a business decision in terms of how confident you are in your estimation process, but if there is a little bit of over-estimation in there, if in fact you think maybe one of the options you have for doing this particular job could reduce the amount of work involved, then that will slice a little bit off of here, reduce the problem here, and so on. So first of all reduce the actual amount of work, the task time, your estimates. The second way, which is the one that’s very often used, is to Add more Resources. I’ve got 60 days work here, if I put two people on it could I get it done in 30 days? If I put three people on it could I get it done in 20 days? Now of course with many Tasks, just adding more people doesn’t necessarily reduce the Duration of the Task prorata and you get to a point where adding more people can actually make it take longer because you have to start having team meetings and you make the whole thing more complicated and so on. But just putting some appropriate Resources on it, if that can reduce the Duration of the Task that’s good as well. And of course the third option is you can have people working overtime or in the case of our project where we’re using a four-day week at the moment, we could maybe have one or two of the key personnel allocated to it five days a week and maybe we could take up a lot of the delay on that basis on well. So now let’s look at the second group of options relating to overlapping these tasks. Now the overlapping, basically we have two groups of options within that. One option is to actually © Copyright 2008-2012 Simon Sez IT, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

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introduce new dependencies or remove dependencies and the other way is to redefine the dependencies that already exist. And I’m going to illustrate one or two of those in this particular project for example. I’m not going to worry too much about the business implications of what I’m about to do. I want to more show you how to do it effectively. On the View Tab, there is a Details check box in the Split View Group; that gives me Task information at the bottom here so let me just bring that all fully into view. I can see Predecessors, I can see Resource names, and so on. So in this particular case Requirements Definition, Tendering Process, Contract, ID 2, that’s the Predecessor Task for this Task. And there is a Finish-to-Start relationship. Now if I look at my other Critical Tasks, let’s see what I’ve got here.

I’ve got Live

Implementation which is implementing the system before we go Live. Now clearly I’m not going to be able to overlap those. I’ve obviously got to do the implementation before we go Live and similarly I’ve got an Acceptance stage here and I’m unlikely to want to go into Live Implementation before I’ve accepted the system, although that’s an option which I may come back to later on. It’s also very unlikely that I would accept or my client will accept the system before I’ve completed testing it. And I’ve all ready got considerable overlap between test script and testing. So basically I’m going to write the test script and as soon as I’ve got a bit written I’m going to start testing and there was bound to be some overlap here, I’ll come back to that in just a moment. And in terms of Analysis and Design although I’ve got a 90 day Task in progress here, there’s no dependency after it, which seems a little strange as well. So maybe there’s a dependency or constraint missing there. Consultancy Review, I’ve all ready seen, I’ve satisfied the dependency after that, but I’ve got problems with the dependency before it. So really let’s go back up to what I was talking about before. What if we actually started work on defining requirements before we’ve been awarded the contract.

Now at the moment if I click on

Requirements Definition I can see that the relationship I have is a Finish-to-Start relationship with a lag of zero days. What if I said I’m prepared to start work on this a month before the contract is due to be awarded. So what if I put in a lag of -20 days, click on OK. Let’s see what happens to the whole Schedule. Well what happens is an awful lot of the problem has been removed because as you can see my Live Implementation is now overlapping that. So what if I made it a little bit less, -25 days, click on OK, and look at that. I’m completely back on schedule.

Now of course that’s a business decision whether I want to start work on

Requirements before the contract is awarded. There may be practical reasons I couldn’t. For © Copyright 2008-2012 Simon Sez IT, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

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instance, maybe the client would need to be involved in doing the Requirements Definition with me and they’re hardly going to do that if they haven’t awarded me the contract yet. But it demonstrates the sort of thing that could be done. Let’s put that back to how it was; back to zero days again. So let’s revert back to having my problem, okay. And let’s look at some of the other options; for instance, this one. Now the Analysis and Design Task is due to start 30 days after Requirements Definition. Is there some way that I could actually start that a little bit earlier? What if I could knock 10 days off of here? So after just 20 days of Requirements Definition I could actually start on Analysis. Well clearly that will help. Here for example, when it comes to writing a test script. I’ve currently got a 45 day lag compared to Analysis and Design. What if I could cut that test script writing down to a smaller lag? Again business considerations obviously would apply here, but there I’ve also resolved the problem that way as well. Now these illustrate a couple of the ways of going about shortening a Critical Path and I think, hope from that if you’re not all ready used to doing this sort of thing you get some idea of a good approach to achieving more overlap once the shortening is done. Now regarding the shortening of Tasks, that very often depends on Resourcing issues and of course Resourcing issues are what we’re coming to in the next unit. So, I look forward to continuing with this from then onwards.

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Chapter 3 – Resources Video: Resource Calendar Toby: Hello and welcome to the first in a series of units about Resources. In the last few units we looked at Scheduling without worrying too much about Resources at all. This time we’re going to turn our attention to Resources and add to the basic knowledge that you should all ready have gathered on this very important aspect of Microsoft Project 2010. We’re going to start with the same Schedule that we had at the end of the last unit. We still have a scheduling problem with it and we’re going to look at a Resource Calendar as one of the ways of resolving this problem. Now you should recall that the scheduling problem here was caused by the change from a fiveday working week to a four-day working week on the project. And I’m going to look at the Resource Calendar of Nate Furness who’s one of the key Resources on this project. He’s involved in most of the tasks that need to be performed. I’m going to see if I can do something to Nate’s Calendar that’s going to help us out of this problem. So first of all let’s switch to the Resource Sheet. Now let’s suppose that we’ve got some good news and some bad news as far as Nate is concerned. First of all let’s assume that Nate has offered to do some weekend working to help us to make the Schedule fit. On the other hand, in return for this Nate has asked for a week off during the life of the project. So we’re going to put both of those into Nate’s calendar and see what the overall affect on the schedule is. Let’s start by putting his one week of holiday in. So in the Resource Sheet double click on Nate, go to Change Working Time, and then Exceptions is the area we use for things like setting up vacations. So let’s set up this exception. I’m going to call it “Spring Vacation” and Nate wants the last week in March, so let’s go for the 26th of March. Now if I go into the Details, what I’m going to do is say this is going to repeat for a number of days. It’s basically a recurring pattern of a nonworking day. So starting on March 26th non-working day, recurring daily, and he’s going to have a vacation until the Monday, the following week, and including the Monday, so that’s April 2nd. So, that’s the Details for his Spring Vacation changed to his Calendar; so March 26th to April 2nd, non-working time for Nate. © Copyright 2008-2012 Simon Sez IT, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

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Now this approach to dealing with vacations is very much the classic way with Project 2010 where you change an individual employee’s availability. Now we could, of course, have created an individual Resource Calendar for Nate and assigned it just to him. We could keep track of all his vacation, any extra time or availability weekend working and so on. And that’s actually quite a popular way of doing things. It’s something to be a little bit careful of because if you do have a Calendar for each individual resource and you have dozens or hundreds or thousands of Resources, it can be become a pretty good big job to keep track of them all. Another approach that’s very popular is to not use the Change Working Time option to show vacation time, but to actually put Tasks on the Project Schedule for each vacation and to assign the relevant Resource to them. This has the advantage that you can actually see on your Gantt Chart or whichever View of the project you’re looking at, that somebody has vacation time coming up. It’s quite an easy way of flagging that. It’s quite a popular approach. In this case what we’ve actually done is we’ve really recorded an exception for Nate to his Standard Working Time and his Standard Working Time is based on the Standard Calendar. So now let’s make the other change for Nate. Let’s go into his information again, click on Change Working Time, we’ve all ready got this Spring Vacation exception. Let’s suppose that Nate has now agreed that he is going to work every Sunday over the course of the project. So what I’m going to do is to change his Standard Working Week. So click on the Work Weeks Tab, click on Details, and I’m going to click on Sunday and of course Sunday is normally a day when there is no working time on the project. So I’m only going to make this an exceptional working week for Nate. So I’m going to say Set Day to these specific working times and I’m going to use the same hours that we normally have in the week, which is 9 a.m. to 1 p.m., 2 p.m. to 6 p.m., click on OK. Click on OK again. Finally click on OK once more. Now let’s have a look at our Gantt Chart again and see what effect all of that has had. Now when you look at the Schedule you may be surprised to see that things really have got considerably worse. Nate’s vacation will clearly cost a few days as it corresponds to a time that he’s working on at least one of the Tasks on our Schedule. But the fact that he’s going to work on Sundays over a four month period that he’s involved in the project, you would have thought would compensate for the loss of time due to his vacation. And this is one of those things that happens with Microsoft Project that really surprises people. They can’t quite see why this is the © Copyright 2008-2012 Simon Sez IT, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

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case. And we’re going to look at this next because it’s a very fundamental concept in Microsoft Project. But before we do, let’s take a quick look at Nate’s involvement in the project by looking at the Resource Usage View. Now you can see Nate’s name here and underneath his name we have the four Tasks that he’s involved in and I’m currently looking at roughly the second half of March. So a little bit further on there we can see Nate’s vacation grayed out to show that he’s not working over that period of time. He starts work again on Tuesday, April the 3rd and then he works regularly from that point onwards. Nate is effectively doing a five-day week on this four-day week project because he has activities on Sunday’s as we’ve requested. So it does seem a little bit strange that when I made that change just now it didn’t really help the Schedule. But, in fact, the explanation is quite straight forward. Because it’s all down to the way that we’ve actually set up the Tasks and to show the amount of work involved in each Task on our project. So let’s have a look at that now. Let’s have a look at the Requirements Definition Task. On the Advanced Tab, you’ll be familiar with Task Type and there of course three options here: Fixed Duration, Fixed Units, and Fixed Work. And it’s important to understand the differences between these. To further complicate matters there is a check box on the right, Effort Driven, which depending on the selection here may or may not be enabled. And it’s the combination of the Task Type and whether it’s Effort Driven or not that determines exactly how Microsoft Project works. Now this is probably one of the very few areas within Microsoft Project that causes by far the most confusion and difficulty for project managers trying to use Project successfully. So in the next unit I’m going to spend quite a bit of time on this, but just for now I’m just going to introduce the basic difference between these and it will also explain why some things we’ve done to Nate’s availability have helped or hindered and some things haven’t. Let’s start with a Task Type of Fixed Duration. If a task has Fixed Duration then it will take the Duration in elapsed time that we’ve given it; whether we add Resources to the Task or not, the Duration of the Task will remain the same. But if we define it to be Effort Driven as this one is, then what happens is as we add Resources then the allocation of each Resource will be reduced. So if I have a four-day Task for one person and I say it’s Fixed Duration and I add a second person and it’s Effort Driven then each person’s allocation will be reduced to 50%. If it’s not Effort Driven, then the Task Duration and all

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Resource allocations remain the same no matter how many Resources you add to the Task. Although Project will increase the total amount of work that’s been done. Now let’s look at the type of Fixed Units. With Fixed Units Tasks, which are not Effort Driven, adding Resources doesn’t affect the number of units or the Duration. Although Project will increase the total amount of work as you increase the number of Resources. If the task is Effort Driven then if you add Resources, Project will shorten the Tasks Duration. For Fixed Work Tasks the amount of work is always the same. They’re always Effort Driven, so you can’t deselect that here and if you add Resources Project shortens the Duration of the Task. So having covered those three Task Types what we’re going to do in the next section is apply those principles to the example here, the Schedule we’ve been looking at and see what effect changing those has and in particular how a combination of those with the changes to Nate’s Calendar can actually help us to achieve our goal of completing this project on time. Or whether in fact the project is just going to take us a little bit longer than we thought it would. So, I’ll see you in the next section.

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Video: Task Types Toby: Hello and welcome to this second unit on Resourcing within this course on Microsoft Project 2010 Advanced topics. In this unit we’re going to look at Task Types in a lot more detail following on from what we looked at in the previous unit. And in particular we’re going to look at the effects of the different Task Types on this straight forward Schedule that we’ve been looking at so far. And we’re going to begin by looking at the four Tasks that are allocated to Nate and we’re going to look at them each in a different way. Now let’s look at what Nate is doing on this job. He’s actually got four Tasks allocated. This is a project to produce a website and Nate is one of our key software people. He knows all about producing websites and he’s a very important member of our team. And one of the factors that’s going to affect the whole of this exercise is that if you look at the text at the end of the bars you can see that Nate’s allocation to the tasks is never 100%. He’s working on other projects. He’s got other jobs to do at the same time. So we can’t allocate him full time to any Task under normal circumstances. So let’s look at what Nate’s got to do for us. He’s got four Tasks here. The first Task is Requirements Definition where he needs to document the requirements for this website. This currently has a Duration of 60 days with Nate working on it half time. The next Task is Analysis and Design where Nate will basically do a business analysis of the requirements and turn that into a detailed design of the site and any software that needs to be written for the site. He’s then going to write a test script and then he’s going to be involved in the testing of the site. One of the important things to notice about these last three Tasks is the way that they overlap. This works on the software principle whereby once some analysis and design has been done then work can begin on test script for that part and once the test scripts written and the software development is complete, which is not actually shown on this Schedule, then the testing can begin. So although these starts of these are linked we are saving time by not waiting until one Task is finished before we start the next, but we do need to allow a certain amount of overlap, a lag on the start, so that enough analysis and design work has been done here before the test script work starts here and that’s really what these lag lines indicate. Now let’s look at the opportunity we have for saving time on these Tasks.

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Now let’s start with the first Task here which is the Requirements Definition Task. If I Open that up, look at the Advanced Tabs, I can see that it’s marked as Fixed Work which is always Effort Driven. That means that the amount of work to do on the Task is fixed and I can shorten the Duration of the Task by allocating more Resource. If I remove Resource, I’ll increase the Duration of the Task. Now in this case Requirements Definition gives me an opportunity to save some time because if I have another Resource available who can also work on Requirements Definition, then I should be able to assign that Resource to this Task. And let’s see what happens when I do that. I’m going to look at the question of Assignment and Resources, Replacement of Resources, and so on later on, but for the moment let’s assume that I’ve got somebody available. I’ll click on the Resources Tab here. I know the Resource I want is actually Les and I’m going to say at the moment that I’m going to assign Les 50% to the Task. Click on OK and immediately you can see the impact on the Schedule in that the Duration of the Task has been very substantially reduced and it seems to have eased the problem somewhat. Of course the end-date is still showing woefully over here. I’ll come back to that in just a moment. But you can see that it has actually helped. Now one of the issues here, remember, is that Les is on the Standard Calendar for this project. Nate as we know, apart from his one week vacation that he’s got booked round about this time, round about the middle of this Task, he’s working Sundays. So he’s got a little bit more availability than Les anyway, apart from over the period of his vacation. Now let’s look at the Analysis and Design Task. This probably looks a little bit unusual to you at the moment because it has no Successor Task, but don’t forget that’s because we’ve got the Critical Filter on. So if I remove that again you can see the Analysis and Design Tasks Successor here is a milestone of Design Sign-off. So let me just put that Filter back on again, the Critical Filter. Back to Analysis and Design, Open it up. This is Fixed Units, Effort Driven and I know that if I wanted to shorten this Task as it is Effort Driven, I could assign more Resources to it. So let’s suppose I do that. This time I’m going to add one of our Analysis and Design specialists. So put down here to Resources, Resource this time Sandra Dawson. I might even try Sandra on 100%, click on OK, and I can immediately see the Task is shortened. It doesn’t particularly help the overall schedule because there are no Successor Tasks waiting for this other than their milestone. But it does illustrate one very important point. When you make a change like this you’ll quite often see an exclamation mark like this on the left and if I click on there it © Copyright 2008-2012 Simon Sez IT, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

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shows me some options that Project offers me and it basically says you’ve added new Resources to this Task, why? Is it because you wanted to reduce Duration so that the Task ends sooner, but requires the same amount of work in person hours? Do you want to increase the total work because the Task requires more person hours?

Or do you want to reduce the hours that

Resources work per day, keeping the Duration and the work the same? So if my intention was to actually reduce the amount of work that’s needed I can actually click on that option. Now note what happens then is that Project distributes the work differently between Nate and Sandra. And in this particular situation where this particular Task doesn’t really help in terms of shortening my overall Critical Path, it does mean I can free up some of Nate’s time by putting another person on the job. And that’s a useful opportunity, a useful way of doing things when potentially you think Nate’s time is going to be one of the real critical factors on this project. So by doing that I’ve managed to keep the same Duration for that Task by adding a new Resource and letting Project minimize effectively Nate’s time. I could, of course, remove Nate from this particular Task altogether but I might save that one for later. Now for the next pair of Tasks that’s Test Script and Testing, I’m going to just remove the Critical Filter again and put us back onto No Filter. I’ll just talk about this in relation to something like development of a website. Now the Test Script Task here is shown, it has a dependency on the start. It cannot start until the Consultancy Review is complete. It cannot start until the Analysis and Design has at least started and there’s some sort of lag period here. But the completion doesn’t really have a dependency shown. Now in effect there would be a dependency shown here because for instance you couldn’t really finish writing the test script until the analysis and design work was complete. So the development work which needs to be done and so on is not shown on the Critical Path, but in any case there would be a dependency here which is not currently shown. So there isn’t really an opportunity in this case for shortening the test script even though in theory it can be done. It’s always important to bear in mind the practical realities of what can and can’t be done. If you see a situation like this one where there really should be a dependency, it’s always a good idea to put that in and we’ll talk about that a little bit later on. So let’s put the Critical Filter back on and say that in effect there is no way we can really shorten those two realistically and still produce a well-tested system.

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So let’s now talk about one or two of the Tasks that Nate isn’t involved in. Let’s start with the first one, Tendering Process and Contract. This is currently shown as a Fixed Units Task. It’d be quite unusual for Tendering Process and Contract to be in the form a Fixed Units Task. Generally speaking they tend to be Fixed Duration because we normally are told by somebody who’s putting a job out to tender how long the tendering process will take and we’re normally told at point they will award the contract. That isn’t always the case, but it’s very usually the case and it’s quite rare for it be Effort Driven as well. So I’m going to change the type of this one and say it’s actually Fixed Duration and it’s not Effort Driven. Now I will probably put a certain amount of effort into the Tendering Process and Contract and that will be part of my sales costs, but I certainly can’t change the length of that by just putting more Resource onto the Task. Fact at the moment I don’t have Resources allocated to it. Another Fixed Task here is the Live Implementation Task. It’s currently marked as 10 days. This is one where it’s probably more likely that the amount, the Duration of the Task could be shortened by more effort. Having said that, there are very often a lot of infrastructure Tasks to perform; there is implementation in terms of computer hardware and so on. And I’m going to treat this on this project as also a Fixed Duration Task and again I’m going to remove Effort Driven and we’ll look back at that again later on as well. So having looked at the Task Types for these I’ve come to the conclusion that just changing the Resources is not going to make this fit at the moment unless I do something a little bit more drastic. Now the Default setting for Task Types and the way that works has changed in recent versions of Project so you need to know how to check that. It’s on the Options Dialogue. Go into Schedule, roundabout the middle you’ll find the Default Task Type. Mine is currently set on this project to Fixed Units. There’s a checked box to say whether the new Tasks are Effort Driven or not. And you can set this on a project by project basis or you can set it for all new projects. Now clearly it’s very important to be able to enter and change Task Durations. Whatever type of task you have and I’m assuming you’re familiar with doing that both by entering and changing entries in Tables, such as in the duration field here, but also using the mouse to drag Task Bars and so on. But one thing you may not have noticed is that if you take a Task like this one, this one Requirements Definition 46 days, if I want to increase it by changing here, watch what happens. Let’s say I increase it to 50 days and then Commit. I get a little warning exclamation © Copyright 2008-2012 Simon Sez IT, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

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mark here, drop down see what the options are. And what Project very helpfully is saying here is you just increased the Duration of the Task. Now there are two reasons you might want to do that. Is it because the work required to do this Task has increased, so it will take longer? In other words, I still want these two people working on it as hard as they were, there’s just more work to do. Or is it because the Resources are actually going to work fewer hours per day so the Task will take longer? And I can always make that choice. I can say, “Hmm, actually there is more work to do so I do need to keep the allocations as high as they are. There’s just more work to do.” Which is the first option, or I can say, “Now actually I’m prepared for this Task to take a bit longer.

I want those Resources to spend a little bit less time on it.”

So these little

exclamation marks, little warning signs here are very useful to watch out in Project 2010 because they very often tell you what you’re choices are as in this case. So in this unit we’ve looked at Task Types. We’ve looked at changing Durations, changing Allocations, and so on. How to set up Defaults and the affects that the changing of Resources can have on Task Durations and so on and we’ve made a very tiny bit of progress in trying to make our schedule fit. Not enough to feel particularly encouraged at the moment so we’re going to look at a couple of other ideas a little bit later on. In the next unit, we’re going to look at the more general features of Resources. So please join me for that.

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Video: General Resource Features Toby: Hello again. This is the third unit on Resources in this course on Microsoft Project 2010 Advanced. Let’s take a look at the Resource Sheet. I’m going to assume you’re familiar really with most of what’s on the Resource Sheet. I’m going to just look at a few particular things now just to emphasize a couple of points and then we’re going to look at some aspects of Resource Sheet that you may be are not aware of. Now you’ll be familiar with Resource Type. We’ve got three options here: Work, Material, and Cost. There is actually a fourth type, Generic, that I’m going to talk a little bit about later on. This is more to do with Project Server, but it’s quite useful and important to understand the Generic Resource type as we’ll see later.

All of the Resources here are currently Work

Resources and we’re going to introduce some Material Resources a little bit later on. Work Resources are basically the people, sometimes the equipment, that are working on consumed time on a Task in a project. Very often these will be members of staff, external contractors, even companies that charge us on an hourly basis, and so on for their work. For each Resource we will have a maximum availability. These are all marked with 100% availability here, which well may not be true, as I discussed earlier on. And then on the Resource Sheet there is some other Fields there, information as well, and of course we can show other Resource Information Fields and we’ll turn to that in just a moment. The other type of Resource, Cost Resource, we’ll also talk about a little bit later on as well. Now the Resource Sheet View itself is a good place to start. As with any other Tabular view within Project 2010, I can actually change the Fields that are shown here. So for instance if I were to choose that Group Column, I could hide the Column or I could click on Insert Column. And when I click on Insert Column, I can Insert another Column of information. So for instance I’ve got a Budget Cost, I can put it in there. Again, Insert another Column, choose another Field, say one of the Date Fields, I can put it in there. And in this way any of this Tabular information can be customized for my specific requirements. And we’re going to be looking at some of that particularly later on when we look at some cost information, but for the moment let’s stick with the standard contents of the Resource Sheet.

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Now don’t forget that on the View Menu we have available to us a drop down next to the Tables button in the Data Group where we can choose a different Table. So for instance, if I choose the Work Table I can see the time that has been Allocated to Nate in terms of the amount of work; the amount of work that he had in the Baseline Schedule that I saved earlier and the variant. So in fact he’s got 220 hours less work to do now and he’s got all of his work still to do because he hasn’t actually started on the project yet. So that’s typical of the sort of Tabular information that’s available. Okay, I’m not going to go through all of these Fields, but I’m going to go through the ones that I think are very important or that they may be something that I can add to for you. And just before we do, I’m going to look at one of the most obvious ones of all which is the Initials Field. Of all of the Resource related Fields this is the one that seems to me to be probably the most underused. There is a Default whereby newly added Resources, so for instance if I put in here John Smith and then just Tab through the fields, Default Initial is J. Very rarely would J be a useful initial. It’s the Default that Project 2010 puts on and note that when you are dealing with some quite big, long, complex projects and you’re trying to look at a lot of information in a small space on a Gantt Chart or something, having meaningful Initials is really helpful. So I always make sure that the Initials that I’m using actually help me to understand the project so I don’t have to put the full Resource names on. Anyway that’s just one of those things that I think is really underused by people and straight away one of the things you can see when I add a new Resource is that a new Resource gets my new Base Calendar which is the four-day week calendar here. Now, of course, the existing ones were added before that applied and they still have the Standard Calendar as their Base Calendar. Bear in mind that for Nate we’ve put some exceptions on there. Clearly I could change any of them, say Anna here over to my new four-day week calendar as a Personal Calendar and of course I can create Individual Calendars for any of my Resources and assign them to those individuals. Now one of the first Fields I want to look at is the Material Field here. This area only really relates to Material Resources. So I’m going to put in a Material Resource which I’m going to call “Presentation Pack.” And basically for this project what I’m saying is that during the Tendering and Contract Task I need get some Presentation Packs from a supplier and I’ll need to buy these and basically they’re consumed like any other material. So this is a Material-type of © Copyright 2008-2012 Simon Sez IT, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

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Resource. I’m going to give it a reasonable short initial, I’ll call it Pres. Pack and what I type in the Material Column is the unit in which this is measured. Now this is free text. I can put anything I like in here. So if I buy these in 10 packs, I will put 10 packs as the unit and the price here, the standard rate price is the price for one 10 pack. So I’m currently working on this one in UK pounds, so that’s 50 pounds for one of those and I’ve now put in the cost. Now Cost is something we’re going to look at in detail later on. I’m pretty much avoiding Cost at the moment, but I needed to demonstrate that to you here. We’ll worry about accruals and cost per use and so on later on as well. So let’s now move on to the next Field which is Group. Now Group can be a particularly useful Field when it comes to assigning Resources and when it comes to reporting on the use of Resources. In this case, in this project I primarily got the staff that are going to work on the project. So let me put in some Groups for them. And the Grouping for them is going to be by their job function. So let’s start with Nate who is described as an Analyst and in fact Sandra is also an Analyst and Les is an Analyst. Now I can actually create any Groups I like and it’s free text so I can give those pretty much any name that I like. If I now have another Group, which is say Testers, we’ll see how I can use these Groupings later on in the next section when I come to look at Assigning Resources. Now I’ll assume that you’re familiar with this next group of Fields which talk about the Rates and Costs and so on. In particular, Standard Rate and Overtime Rate you should be familiar with, but you may not know that you don’t have to use the units that are here. So for instance this is the cost per hour of Les’s time. If I wanted to put in here 30 for the 30 pounds per hour rate, that would be fine. But with Anna if I wanted to I could put 200, slash, and then D for Day, click that, and I see that Anna’s rate is actually 200 pounds per day. And next we come to the Accrual Field, the Accrue At. Now we’re going to be looking at Costs later on in a lot more detail so I’m only going to briefly talk about this now. As you should know there are three options: Start, Pro-rated, and End. And in simple terms it is where Project actually accrues that cost; at the start of a Resource allocation, pro-rated throughout the use of the Resource allocation, or at the end of the Resource allocation. Now bear in mind that a Resource may have not only an on-going cost at a standard rate or maybe partly at an overtime rate, but it may also have a cost per use. So you could, for instance, use a Resource where there was perhaps a daily charge for the use of that resource and also a one-off cost per use. Where © Copyright 2008-2012 Simon Sez IT, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

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you have a cost per use and otherwise the accrual is set to pro-rated, if it’s set at pro-rated, the cost per use is actually charged at the start of the Task because a cost per use will not be prorated across the course of the Task. So it’s worth bearing that in mind as well. So there are some of the main pieces of information about a Resource. For a full range of options double click the Resource in the Resource Sheet view and bring up the Resource Information Dialog. Now apart from the Fields we’ve all ready looked at this offers some very useful additional options. You can, for instance, put things like Contact Details, E-mail Address, and so on, Windows Account Detail for a person. We’re going to come back to a couple of these other Fields in a moment, but looks at Resource Availability. Now the availability traditionally and it’s certainly in earlier versions of Project, we’re shown here on this max rate that I talked about earlier, but with the Resource Availability definition on the Resource Information Dialogue you can actually show a profile of availability of a Resource. So for instance let’s take Nate for example. Let’s suppose that from February 1st to May 31st he’s available 100% to the project, but from June 1st to August 31st he’s only available 50%, which is actually going to be pretty bad news for this project. If I click on OK now, I have a more complex picture for Nate’s availability and note the warning message here, click on that, see what that does. The Resource is over-allocated. That means I’ve all ready got a problem with Nate’s availability because, presumably, of the limited time he’s available from June 1st to August 31st. So I’m going to go back and have a look at that a little bit later on. But let’s go back into his Resource Information Dialog now and look at a couple of other things I can specify for Nate. The Code Field here is a useful one where I can store things like an internal Cost Code which I can use for accounting purposes. And over here I have a Booking Type:

Committed or

Proposed. Now a Resource has either or a Committed or Proposed type. Nate is a Committed type because I want all of my Resource allocations for Nate to be committed. If I set him as Proposed, there would be nothing to stop Project from actually using him on another project that’s sharing this same Resource pool. So Committed is my Booking Type of choice with anybody I’m definitely committed to on my project. And over here I have a couple of check boxes, both of which are very useful. One of them I mentioned earlier on. If I want to set up a Resource which is not actually a real person, but is almost a placeholder for a Resource, so I’m saying I want somebody to do this kind of work I can set up a Generic Resource at this point and © Copyright 2008-2012 Simon Sez IT, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

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then later on in my project I can allocate a specific Resource to do that job. Now Nate is certainly not a Generic Resource so I’m certainly not going to have him as Generic. And similarly I can set up Budget Resources which are basically saying I’ve put a figure in here as a budget figure but really I don’t know exactly how much it’s going to cost and I don’t know exactly how much that cost is going to made up at the moment. So I’m just putting it in there as a budget figure for now. So there are the main items on the General Tab of the Resource Information Dialog. We have a second Tab for Costs which we’re going to look at in a later unit when we can talk about how we can vary Costs over time, increase, change accrual rates and so on. And then we have a Notes Field; this can be very useful for keeping notes about a particular Resource. I might, for instance, make a note here about Nate’s vacation and why I agreed to let him take it. Or I may put in a note in here like, “Nate is critical to this project and we may need to negotiate changes to his availability,” for example. Click on OK and when you’ve put a note on, note the little icon on the left here under this left hand column showing the note. So I’ve actually got a note that there’s a note here and I’ve also got the exclamation mark reminding me that Nate is currently over-allocated. So we’re going to look at a lot of that Cost information in much more detail later on, but in the next section we’re going to look at Assigning Resources to tasks. So, I’ll see you then.

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Video: Assigning Resources to Tasks Toby: Hello. We’re looking at Advanced topics in Microsoft Project 2010 and this another unit on Resources and in this particular unit we’re looking at Resource Assignments. As usual I’ll assume that you’re familiar with the basic way of Assigning Resources to Tasks and we’re going to look at those more advanced techniques and perhaps some things you haven’t come across yet. So let’s get started. Now if I want to Assign Resources to a Task, I select the Task; in this case, Requirements Definition. On the Resource Tab there’s the Assign Resources button or I can right click on the Task, choose Assign Resources from there and I see the Assigned Resources Dialogue. Now very simply the Assign Resources Dialogue gives me a list of the available Resources and the two that are currently Assigned are ticked, both allocated 50% and then the other Resources in my project are listed here. If I wanted to Assign Anna I could just select the Anna line, it’s all ready selected, enter a percentage here. If I don’t enter anything at all it assumes 100%, click Assign, and then Anna is Assigned to the project. That’s the straight forward side that I assume you’re familiar with. But what about some of the other considerations? For instance, if I have a Resource List which has got perhaps hundreds or even thousands of Resources in it, how do I find the one I want more simply? And then even if I don’t have quite so many Resources, how do I make sure I find one that’s actually got time available to work on the Task? And they’re the sort of things that we’re going to look at in this unit. So let’s look at some of these ways of getting help. If we press the plus sign here next to Resource List Options, we can see there are two main methods. There’s the Filter Method and there’s the Available to Work approach. Let’s try Filter by first. At the moment there is an All Resources Filter in place which basically means All Filters. So I’ve even got things like the Presentation Pack which is actually a Material Resource, so one option on Filtering is to go for Resources Work. That removes the Presentation Pack and just shows me the Work Resources that are available to me. Another Filter option is to use Group. Now we set up some Groups earlier on. This is how you actually use those Groups. The person I need to work on this Requirements Definition has to be an Analyst, so if I click on Group, an additional small Dialogue comes up saying, “What is the © Copyright 2008-2012 Simon Sez IT, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

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Group name?” And it’s actually Analyst. So click on OK and what I see are the three people that are in the Analyst group. Now, of course, two of them are all ready Assigned to this Task; Les and Nate, so the other person is Sandra. I could now of course Assign Sandra to this Task. So the options for Filter By, there are quite a few of them and some of them such as Non-Budget Resources and Overallocated Resources and so on quite specific to particular situations you might find yourself in. There is also a More Filters button here where you can again choose from these Standard Filters, but it also gives you the option of New, creating your own New Filter to use there and also gives you the option of going into the Organizer. And of course within the Organizer, as I’m sure you know, you can look at the Global Template and possibly copy Filters that may be of use to you. Check the Filters Tab here of course and copy those into use within your project as well. So that’s the Filters Option. So I’m going to leave that Filter set on Resources Work and now let’s look at Available to Work. Now I’ve only got these six Available Work Resources apart from the two that are all ready working on this Task, and in here I specify the amount of time that I need for the person to work on this Task. Currently set at zero hours, I can actually put that in at any units I like. I’m going to say initially that I want somebody to work on this Task for two days. Now all six names still appear. And in fact whenever I put a Duration, an amount of work in here what Project does is it looks at the Resources Calendar and the Resources Availability Contour, the Duration of the Task, and basically works out whether that person or that Resource I should say is available for the amount of time I’ve specified to work on that Task. Now notice the six names, watch what happens as I increase the amount of time. Convert it to the Default of hours, still got six Resources. I keep increasing and in fact, eventually when I get up to a high enough figure, they will start to disappear. So for instance, one of the Resources disappeared there, Matthew Rouse. We’ve gone beyond his availability to work. So if I know how much work I need from somebody and specify it in there in hours or days or whatever unit I want to use, then if that person is not available they will disappear from the list. Now one or two other things which are really very specific to how you’re working with Microsoft Project, this Add Resources button here gives you access to two other sources for available Resources or potentially available Resources. That’s Active Directory or your Address Book. Now I have both of these and if you are running Project Server, which is currently grayed © Copyright 2008-2012 Simon Sez IT, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

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out, you’d have a third source there. Active Directory, if you’re on our Windows Server or other active directory type network, it gives you access to your list of Resources that way, which I do actually have Windows Server running here. So they are, if you’re in the right environment, sources for other Resources. Address Book, in my case, would come from Microsoft Outlook. One other very useful feature of the Assign Resources Dialog is the Graph button. If I click on Graph, I can actually see the availability of Resources available to the project. Now let me just close the Dialog for a moment and look. This is the normal Resource Graph. I use the Slider on the left to scroll through my Resources. So for instance, if I look at Nate’s availability I can see the blue box that says represent the work that he’s got to do. The red indicates his overallocations. I can right click on the Graph Area and I can choose from other types of information that I could show, for instance his remaining availability. So that can be a pretty useful way of looking through your Resources to see who’s likely to have availability and I should point out that when you do that it’s not looking at the particular Task that was selected. It’s looking at that persons availability on the project overall. Now when it comes to dealing with Material Resources there are a couple of additional things to bear in mind. I’ve selected Tendering Process Contract again, click on Assign Resources. Nothing is actually assigned at the moment. Now in this case I’m going to look at the Materials to use. I’m going to change the Filter to Resources Material and as I just explained earlier, in this case we’re using some Presentation Packs. Now we have a cost for those. The units are in tens and I want to assign five to this Task and it calculates for me the cost of that will be 250 UK pounds. Now when dealing with Material Resources there are two options, there is Fixed Consumption and Variable Consumption. In the case of the tendering process where as I explained earlier I’m going to use these Presentation Packs, which I need to get from a supplier. The number I’m going to use is not dependent on how long the tendering process takes, whether it takes a week, a month, or six months, I’m going to use or have available to use 50 of these packs at a cost of 250 UK pounds. Now that’s an example of Fixed Consumption. One of the other Tasks in my project, the Testing one down here, number 21 is a Task where one of the Materials to be consumed, which is the use of an online laboratory, an online lab, is actually a case of Variable Consumption because I’m actually consuming time at this lab as though it were a material and on © Copyright 2008-2012 Simon Sez IT, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

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an hourly basis. So the longer the testing process takes the more this particular material will cost me. Now I’m going to do that then on the basis of a price per hour, which I’ve all ready entered onto the Resource Sheet. Note that this is a good example in that you could consider the online lab to actually be a Work Resource as well and pretty much set it up in the same way, but for the purposes of here we’ll think of it as a Material. Note that I can change to a different Task without closing the Assign Resources Dialog of course.

I currently only have the Work

Resource Nate Furness Assigned. I’m looking at Material Resources. I’m going to use the online lab and I’m going to say that the online lab, who’s rates I’ve all ready entered, I’m going to use one per hour which makes it a Variable Consumption Resource. Now to enter that I put 1/H and then based on the current Duration of that Task I get a cost here of 3,200 pounds to use one of these hours of access, which is access to an online lab per hour for the Duration of my Testing Task. So this is going to cost me 3,200 pounds. Now I’m going to assume that you’re familiar with replacing and removing Resources using the Assigned Resources Dialog. Let me just point one or two things out to you. One of them is if I with this Assigned Resources Dialog exactly as it is now where I have Nate Furness who’s Assigned, the online lab that’s also assigned, the Presentation Pack that isn’t and the reason that’s there is because I’ve got a Resources Material Filter applied. If I click on Replace I will only see the valid Replacement Resources, i.e., Resources that are already assigned to this particular Task or those that satisfy the Filter, in this case Resources Material. So if I wanted to replace Nate with a Work Resource that wasn’t already assigned I’d need to change my Filter here to say Resources Work, now do Replace, and I see again all the Resources that are currently assigned and all of my Work Resources. So I could put a different person on that Task. And, of course, to remove a Resource you just select the Resource in the list and click on Remove. The next things we need to look at in relation to Resource Assignments are a couple of special cases and I’m going to cover those in the next section. So please join me for that.

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Video: Generic and Budget Resources Toby: Hello. This is a unit on Resources in Microsoft Project 2010 Advanced and in this unit we’re going to look at two special Resource situations. I’ve mentioned both of these before, Generic Resources and Budget Resources. Both of these are pretty useful, not all the time, but sometimes they can really help you with a project.

And we’re going to look at Generic

Resources first. Now quite often in the early stages of working on a project, you may know that you need Resources to perform a Task or a particular Group of Tasks but you may not yet have identified exactly who those Resources are. You may know you need two people to do something but you don’t know who the two people are yet. But you can still put those Resources into your plan and you can put them in as Generic Resources. Now I’ve got a good example on this project because part of this project is the Testing Task. And this Testing Task is where we take this website we’ve developed and we get people to actually test it.

Now sometimes people use the

development team to do at least some of the testing when they’re working on a new website, but it’s a great advantage not to always use people who’ve been involved in the development of the site because they know what it’s supposed to do and they may subconsciously avoid doing very silly things. For example to see what happens if they push the wrong button. So it’s quite useful to be able to bring in testers who haven’t been associated with the Task of development so far and give them a chance to just hit the keys and see what happens when they try to do various things. Now in this particular case, I’m going to assume that I’m going to use some testers and this is how I can set up those testers as Generic Resources. So, I’m in the Resource Sheet at the moment. Let’s go to Add Resources. I’m going to add a Work Resource. Obviously it Inserts the Row as usual in the Resource Sheet and I could just type in the basic information here but I actually want to put in more and very specific information in this case, so let’s start with a Resource Name. Let’s call this “Generic Resource.” Clearly there’s no e-mail address at this stage. I’m going to put in here just a little note to say, call it “Generic” just for now, just for the moment. Obviously no account and so on, it’s a Work Resource. The Booking Type will be Committed on the grounds that I know I need these people even though I don’t know the names and then the key thing here is to tick the Generic Box.

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Now these are Testing Resources so I’m actually going to put them into my Tester Group and I’m also going to denote here the fact that I know that I have some of these Resources available to me. Now let’s suppose that I’ve been told that I can have from March the 1st to June the 30th, I have available to me three of these Resources. So I put in Resource Availability to show that and then I’ve been told that from July 1st until September 30th there are in fact two of them available to me. So that tells me the numbers without knowing the names obviously. So having set up that basic information on the General Tab, if I needed to change their working time I could. Costs, I’m going to look at later on. I’m going to put a note on here. The note here is to make it very specifically clear that these are testers for Usability Testing. They’re not people there to test for example that exactly the right numbers come out, if there’s some commercial implications like involves buying or selling something, that all the right transactions happen. They’re people that are here to make sure that from a usability point of view the website basically does what it’s supposed to and it’s reasonably friendly for people to use. If I have any Custom Fields defined I can actually set up or link to those here or specify their use here. But basically that’s it. So having entered all of that information I click OK and there’s my Generic Resource on the Resource Sheet. Now there is an icon in the first column there, a little pair of heads there that basically denotes this is a Generic Resource. Don’t forget you can hover over this first column here and an explanation of each of the icons is shown in the little screen tip there. And this is an easy way of identifying the Generic Resources on my project. So let’s now go back into Gantt Chart View. Let’s go to my Testing Task and let’s Assign Resources to my Testing Task. If I want to Filter by Group, enter the Group name of Tester, click on OK, then obviously now I can see my Generic Resource there and I can Assign the Generic Resource in exactly the same way that I would’ve assigned an Individual Resource and, of course, when it comes to specifying the particular names later on I can use Resource Substitution for one or more of these Generic Resources. So let’s set about Assigning this Generic Resource to my Testing Task. I’ve estimated that I need three usability testers on this Task. So put in 300 for the units, click on Assign, and then Close. Note that I get a little note here, an exclamation, again I usually tick on that and it says, “You’ve added new Resources to this Task. Is it because you wanted to either reduce Duration © Copyright 2008-2012 Simon Sez IT, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

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so the task ends sooner?” Now as discussed earlier we know that the testing is going to need to take as long as it’s shown there. “Or increase the total work because the Task requires more person hours? Keep the Duration constant.” Now, of course, the latter case is the one. I’m adding the usability testing to this Task, so that’s the one. However, I’ve still got over-allocation indicated here and I’m going to look at Over-Allocation later on in the course. So that shows you how to set up and assign Generic Resources. We’re now going to look at Budget Resources. So let’s now look at Budget Resources and we’re going to start with a particular example on this project.

I’m going to have a Budget Resource of Engineering Callouts.

Although we’re

developing this website and we’ve got a lot of the Tasks involved we’re resourcing from our own team. Our team doesn’t really include people who can and fix any little engineering problems we get, electrical problems, PC or other equipment problems. So we basically have a budget for calling out engineers at various points in the project. Now because we don’t know when this is going to happen, we don’t have particular problems that we know are going to occur, we just allow ourselves a budget for this throughout the life of the project. So we’re going to set up Engineering Callouts as a Budget Resource. So we set up Engineering Callouts as a Budget Resource, so we click on Add Resources. This will be a Cost Resource and let’s just go in, put in the detail. I’m going to call it “Engineering Callouts.” And the most important thing is to check here the Budget check box. Now I’m not really going to add anything else to that, it isn’t in a particular group. I maybe just put some Initials. Don’t worry about availability and so on. Click on OK and one of the interesting things to note here, in fact the most important thing to note, is that there is no facility to enter any Cost Values against this sort of Resource at all. You have to add that in a very particular way, which is what we’re going to look at next. So I need to enter my Budget in the Project Summary Task. So you need to be in a Task oriented View to see this. I’m in Gantt Chart View at the moment. Click on the Format Tab and there is a check box over here for Project Summary Task. Click on Project Summary Task and there is the Project Summary Task. It actually says ACME website and it is in effect the Summary Task for the whole Project.

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So what I now need to do is to assign my Budget Resource to the Project Summary Task. So select the Task, click on Assign Resources. Now I can check Filter and I can look for Budget Resources. I’ve only got one of course, Engineering Callouts, so I’m going to Assign that. I don’t actually need to enter anything in here, I can just click Assign, and then Close. That Resource is now Assigned to the Project Summary Task. But I can’t actually put a Cost for the Resource in using that Assignment Dialogue. I need to do it in a very particular way. Now there are actually a couple of ways of doing this. I’m going to show you the one that I normally use. So I’m now going to change the View to Task Usage and within the Task Usage View I’m going to add or I should say Insert another column. I’m going to click on Insert Column and I’m going to go down to Budget Cost which is here; insert that column and you’ll see that there is an entry here for Project Summary Task and then underneath that the Engineering Callouts Budget Cost here. Now this ACME website Budget Cost is of course the sum of all the individual Budget Costs for the different Assignments I’ve made on the project. So I now put in my budget for Engineering Callouts. Let’s say it’s a 1,000 UK pounds. And I’ve now added a Budget Cost. Now you can also set up Budget Work Resources which basically apply in the same way, but there are some fundamental differences as we’ll see. Let me go back into the Resource Sheet and I’m going to add a Resource and I’m going to add a Work Resource this time and the Work Resource I’m going to add is one for Project Management Time. Now let’s assume that we’ve basically been allowed a budget of say 500 hours for Project Management on this project. So let’s call that PM by the initials or maybe better Proj. Man. and mark it as a Budget Resource. Now this is a Budget Work Resource not a Cost Resource. So click on OK. There it is. Let’s now go back into Task Usage View and what we do in Task Usage View with our Summary Task selected, click on Assign Resources. Now of course I’ve got this Budget Resources Filter applied, so there is Project Management as one of my resources, select that, click on Assign, and I’ve now got an entry here for Project Management under the Project Summary Task. Now the way we specify a budget for this is not to look at the Budget Cost, but to introduce another Field here which is Budget Work. So I go down, find Budget Work, and I can put in my Budget Work here of 500 hours and then as the project progresses I can see how my actual hours

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that I book into the project are comparing to my budget hours. So we’ve got Budget Cost and Budget Work. So these are well developed features in Project 2010, both the use of Generic Resources and Budget Resources. I personally find them very useful in the projects that I manage. In the next section we’re going to take a look at Resource Allocation and Leveling issues and how we can deal with those. So I’ll see you then.

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Video: Overcoming Resourcing Problems & Resource Leveling Toby: Hello and welcome back. We’ve been looking at Resourcing in the last few units and you should know quite a bit more about it now. Much earlier on in the course we realized that we had a problem with this Schedule. Well not only have we still got a problem with this Schedule, we’ve now got some Resourcing issues as well and they’re indicated by these red people symbols on the left here. Now in this unit we’re going to start to look at how to identify and then overcome Resourcing problems and this is really treated as part of the overall issue endtask of resolving scheduling problems in general. So, let’s start then with looking at how we identify Resourcing problems. Now one thing to realize about the way that Project 2010 works is that if you Allocate a Resource to a Task and that Resource is all ready Allocated elsewhere to the point where your new Allocation Over-allocates the Resource, i.e., we need more of that Resource than is available, Project will still let you Allocate the Resource but will flag the Over-allocation. Now there are a number of ways of seeing the Over-allocation. We’ve all ready seen the little red people signs and let’s look at some other ways that we can spot Over-allocations. Let’s start with the Resource Sheet and we’ve seen here that our Generic Tester Resource actually appears to be Over-allocated. We’ve got a problem there, it’s indicated in red. If I hover over the little note here I can see the Resources Over-allocated and should be Leveled, so that’s one that needs attention. And down here against Nate, again, same message, “The Resource is Over-allocated and should be Leveled.” If I look at the Resource Usage View down here, again, any ones which are Over-allocated I can see are in red. And one View that I find particularly useful is the Resource Allocation View. Now with this View in the top half of this Combination View we have the Resource Usage View, and in the lower part a Leveling Gantt. Now let’s look at one of the Resources that is Over-allocated. So let’s go down to Nate, is a good example here. The lower part we can see the Tasks that Nate is assigned to. Now the Time Scale, I’m just going to change the Time Scale. We’ve got a Twotiered Time Scale. I’m going to make that Months divided into Weeks. And as I scroll forward in time you can see in red, in the top half, where the Over-allocations occur. I can see the time I need of Nate’s here, going up to almost 40 hours of Nate’s limited © Copyright 2008-2012 Simon Sez IT, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

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time. And then I can see the Tasks that Nate is working on over that period of time and try to work out which one or ones I need to change in order to bring him back within Allocation again. And, of course, the other thing I can see in the Resource Usage View at the top is the breakdown. So I can that of 37.85 hours this is how Nate’s time is divided between the three Tasks that he’s working on. Something else that can really help when you’re looking at Conflicts and Over-allocations is to use Filters. Now I’ve still got the Resource Usage View in the top half here, so I’m looking at Resource Allocation overall. Click on the View Tab and in the Filter dropdown here one of the options there is Over-allocated Resources and this will just show the Over-allocated Resources. In this case, there’s the Generic Testing Resource and there’s Nate. If I click on Nate, as before, I can see the Tasks he’s Allocated to here and as before in the top part I can see in bold red the Over-allocated periods of time, depending on what I’ve got shown in the Time Scale and the total giving me an idea of how much Over-allocated Nate is. So overall this is a pretty useful View for looking Over-allocations. The numbers involved are in the top and the Tasks that the Resource is working on are visible in the bottom. But you can actually add some other information to this View which helps even more. If you right click on the Detail part of the View here, you have some other Fields of information that are available and one of these is Over-allocation. Note some of the others, Cost, Actual Work, and so on, but let’s show Over-allocation. Now what this does for each period is show us the amount by which the Resource is Over-allocated. So here, for example, the Over-allocation of 37.85 hours is an Overallocation of 15.85 and that goes on of course over the whole course of the project. We can see where Nate has Over-allocations and the extent to which he’s Over-allocated. Later on in the project, of course, Nate is not assigned to the project at all, so all of his assigned work is an Over-allocation. Now we’ve looked there at some of the normal Views that you might use to look at Resource Conflicts and Over-allocations. In Project 2010, but only in the Professional version, there is an additional View that can be very useful in this situation and that is Team Planner View. If I click on Team Planner View, you see a list of Resource names and the Tasks that each of them is assigned to.

If you hover over a particular Task you get a good summary of the Task

Information. So Generic Resource, for example, is assigned only to the Task Testing and there is © Copyright 2008-2012 Simon Sez IT, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

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some information about the start of the Task Testing. So we know it’s Auto-Schedule, Start and Finish Date, Duration, and so on. How much works been done on it. And Nate down here, of course he has three Tasks. Now as you scroll through this in time, the Over0allocation-type problems are all flagged in red so we can see Nate’s problems still here. We’ve got a period of about three weeks there when there’s still a problem and of course for Generic Resources we see that there’s a general problem up here anyway. At the bottom of the Team Planner View, there’s a display of any unassigned Tasks. So having looked at various ways of identifying Resource Conflicts and Over-allocations, we’re now going to look at some ways of resolving those problems. Now there are many ways of going about this and perhaps the most important point I can make here is that the ability to do something on paper or, in this, case electronically with Microsoft Project is not a replacement for doing it in reality. Let me give you a very particular example. We’ve got an issue here of Nate being totally Over-allocated in September and October and, in fact, the Generic Resource has a high level of Over-allocation as well. Now one way of resolving Nate’s situation is to extend his availability on the project and we’re going to look at that first. But it’s important to recognize that that may resolve the issue here, but of course we may need to clear it with Nate’s boss; that he can be made available on the project. At the moment a project that we wanted to finish in early September is running into October because of the Scheduling problems we’ve got and we can’t assume necessarily that Nate can be made available. But let’s assume for the moment that he can and what I’m going to do is go back into the Resource Information for Nate and make the necessary change there. So having looked at the Over-allocations for Nate, I’m going to go into his Resource Information and I’m in particular going to look at the Resource Availability Fields. And now at the moment what I’ve got here is I’ve got Nate being available full-time until the end of May and then on a half-time basis from the beginning of June to the end of August. Now I want to extend the fulltime availability beyond the end of May and I want to change the half-time availability to just being the months of say September and October. So I’m going to change this to be September 1st to October 31st and I’m going to extend this to the end of August. Now I’ve cleared this with Nate’s boss, click on OK, and you can immediately see what effect this has had. Now it hasn’t solved the problem completely because I’ve still got some Over-allocation for Nate here in © Copyright 2008-2012 Simon Sez IT, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

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September. I’ll come back and look at that in a moment. But you can see that if I go back through time, quite a bit of the Over-allocation for Nate has been resolved. So extending his full-time commitment on the project has really helped. Now in terms of a structured approach to resolving the Conflicts of Resources and Overallocation of Resources on a Schedule, you’d normally turn to Leveling and that’s what we’re going to look at next. You should have used Leveling before. Let’s just look at the options I’ve got set up here for this Schedule. Leveling is currently set at Manual. I don’t actually like to have Leveling on Automatic myself. I find it a bit disruptive when I’m just trying to work on the Schedule and I tend to do a Manual exercise to resolve issues as and when they arise or indeed as and when I need to resolve them. Now there are a number of settings here and I’ll assume that you’ve been through all of these basic settings and you’re familiar with what they all mean, but one or two particular ones to point out. The Leveling Order is important and this is currently set at Standard. Now if you have, particularly if you have a fairly complex Schedule, you may want to set Priorities for Leveling and you would set a Priority on a Task and the Tasks with the highest Priority are the ones that are treated as being most important and they will be Leveled or extended in time or moved in time last. So don’t forget that you can use Prioritization here. Your Leveling Order options are then these. The first Order option is ID only, in which case what Project does it delays or splits the Tasks with the highest ID number, so the ones later in the Schedule are moved or extended first.

Standard is the usual one.

Project looks at the

Dependencies, Slack Dates, and Priorities. It tries to work out the best way of doing things itself and Priority followed by Standard says primarily go by the project task priority and then the items are dealt with, the ones with similar Priority, are dealt with on the Standard basis. So it’s important to set that correctly. I’ve got mine set to Standard, but if you definitely have a Priority driven set of Tasks, a good idea to use the Priority option there. Now in my current situation this option also is very important, Level Only Within Available Slack. What that means is that the end-date of the project will not be changed. It’s only going to try to Level Resources in such a way that my project is not delayed. Now that’s very important here because I don’t want to make things worse. Obviously the whole thing could quite easily fit if I just stretched it out into the far distant future, but I don’t want that to happen. I want Project

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to try to resolve Resource Conflicts and Over-allocations without actually delaying the end of the project. And then another couple of very important options before I’ll actually Level this Schedule; this one, look for Over-allocations on a Day-by-Day Basis at the moment, this really specifies the granularity for Over-allocations. I may not be too worried about small deviations on a Day-byDay basis, I just want to make that in a typical week a Resource is not Over-allocated. So I could have Week-by-Week for instance. And Clear Leveling Values Before Leveling, that means if you’ve done some Leveling before, Undo all of that, forget all that, start again, and let’s try to do the job again with a clean sheet to start from. I’m going to leave that set. I’m going to go for Week-by-Week Over-allocations and I’m going to click on Level All to see what happens. Now having pressed Level All it immediately comes up with a problem, Project cannot resolve the Over-allocation of Generic Resource on Sunday, July 1st. Now at this point I can skip an Over-allocation problem or I can skip all of them and say, “Well do what you can without any of these stopper-type problems” or I can just stop. And at the moment I’m going to stop and I’m going to take another look at the Generic Resource Allocations problems. So, I need to look at Generic Resource problems. I still have a problem with Nate’s Schedule and, of course, I’ve still got the problem that my project is running a few weeks later than it should do. And really in the next unit I’m going to address all of those and a couple of other problems and hopefully finish up with a Schedule that works. So, please join me in the next unit.

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Video: Overcoming Resourcing Problems – Part 2 Toby: Hello and welcome to this final unit in the sequence on Resourcing in Microsoft Project 2010 Advanced. We’ve pretty much covered all of the topics and techniques that you need to sort out a Schedule like this one and I’ve left the bulk of the problems in here. We’re going to really resolve everything within this unit. Now in this website development project I have a number of problems apart from the fact that the Schedule doesn’t complete by September the 1st, I know that I have some Resourcing issues as well. I’ve got an individual, Nate, who’s still slightly Over-allocated. I have problems with my Testing Resources. And of course the Schedule itself just doesn’t fit. So I’m going to look at ways that I can make it fit. I tried quite a few things earlier on. I know that some of the Tasks can’t really be shortened just by putting more Resources on and I’m pretty confident in my estimates. So the next step starting with the actual Schedule, the Tasks rather than the Resources initially is to look at the Lag and Lead times that I put in when I set up these Tasks in the first place.

Now the first dependency I had was Requirements Definition.

If I open up on

Requirements Definition its predecessor is Tendering Process and Contract. I spoke about that earlier in the course and said you would normally have that as a finish-to-start relationship. I’ve actually got a Lag Time of zero, so literally that means the day we’re awarding the project we start on the Requirements Definition. Under the circumstances in order to try to keep the Schedule as short as possible, I maybe ought to keep with that, but in reality you’d probably allow yourself a little bit of time to get your team organized before you actually started work on the Requirements Definition, but I’ll leave it like that for now. And look at the next dependency and if I click on Analysis and Design, again, only one predecessor, Requirements Definition and it’s a start-to-start relationship. So it says when we start on the Requirements Definition, we can 30 days later, Lag Time, 30 days later start on the Analysis and Design. Now one of the reasons for having such a long time is to make sure that we’re well down the road on the Requirements Definition before we start Analysis and Design. However, given the problems that we have here in terms of making the Schedule fit, I feel we’re going to have to make that Lag Time a little bit less. This will add a certain amount of risk to the project in that there’s a risk that having a little bit less Requirements Definition done before we start Analysis and Design may mean that we make some mistakes, maybe I’ll need to add a little bit of extra time here later on to cope with © Copyright 2008-2012 Simon Sez IT, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

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some re-work on the Analysis and Design, but for the moment let’s assume that I can reduce that Lag Time from 30 days to 20 days and see what affect that has overall. Of course, the affect it has overall is very good because all ready this Task here which is way out into the beginning of October has been pulled back by 10 days. So I fixed a couple more of those dependencies, reduced the Lags a little bit. It introduces a little bit more risk in that I’m starting work on subsequent stages a little bit sooner than I’d like to. I could of course add extra Resource, a little extra bit of time to one or two of the Tasks to reduce the risk on those, but now let’s look at one or two of the other standard things that you would look out for when you’re trying to change the actual timing of the Tasks. I’m not too worried about the Resources at the moment. There’s a couple of milestones here. Whereas with this one, Requirement Sign-Off.

There’s another one, Design Sign-Off.

Here’s another one,

Development Sign-Off. Development Sign-Off looks different from the others and the reason is that there is color coding used here for Manual versus Auto-Scheduled Tasks.

And this

particular one, Development Sign-Off, when I originally included it in the project, I gave it a Manual Schedule setting. Now that was early on when I was trying to get some idea of how the whole project would pan out. I now need to change it back to Auto, which I’m going to do. It’s on the General Tabs in the Task Information. Change that to Auto-Scheduled. Let me just check the Advanced Setting to make sure I’ve got a suitable constraint, which is “As soon as possible.” And I’m going to click on OK. Now you may be surprised looking here that that Task hasn’t actually moved and there’s no apparent why it shouldn’t have moved earlier in time. Now in order to explain what’s happened and to resolve this new issue, I want to refer to two things that I mentioned earlier on again. First of all, when you change a Task from being Manually Scheduled to Auto-Scheduled, the new Auto-Scheduled version of the Task picks up a constraint based on the previous Scheduled date for that Task. So although we looked at this Task before we clicked OK and it said “As soon as possible,” as soon as you click OK and change it to Auto-Scheduled, it’s given a constraint. The second thing is we looked briefly at the Task Inspector before when we had a problem. You can use the Task Inspector any time you like. If you’ve got a Task like this you look at it and you think, “Why on Earth is that doing what it’s doing?” Take a look at the Task Inspector. Click on Task Inspector, open it up, have a quick look at this Task. Factors effecting Task, it’s Auto© Copyright 2008-2012 Simon Sez IT, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

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Scheduled. Starts on the 8th of September. Well that’s a surprise. Ah, but it’s now got a constraint, “Start no earlier than,” and that’s the Date that was on the Task when it was Manually Scheduled, so that’s the nature of the problem here. So if I now go back into that, now there is a constraint, “Start no earlier than,” it was “As soon as possible” before, which is what I want. So we’ll say “As soon as possible” again, click on OK, and now my Task has moved right forward to the 8th of August and that’s exactly where I want it to be. So that’s fine. Now I’ve only got a relatively small problem remaining with my Schedule. Now I do have some options for Allocating more Resources to the Tasks on my Schedule. Although I know that one or two of those Resources I have some Allocation issues with all ready and I don’t want to introduce even more problems. So what I might choose to do here is to look again at dependencies and relationships between Tasks. Let’s look at this one, Test Script, and see what its dependencies are. Now Test Script has Predecessors of Analysis and Design, Consultancy Review, and Design Sign-Off. Now this Task cannot finish until five days after the Design Sign-Off. That’s because there may be some final changes in the Design at the end of the Sign-Off period which I might have to incorporate into the Test Script. So that’s a perfectly reasonable dependency. I also allow six weeks after the start of Analysis and Design before I start work on Test Script. I’m going to change that to four weeks. As I mentioned earlier I’m probably going to need to account for a little bit of risk mitigation now to reduce that. This Task also depends on the Consultancy Review. So let’s try that and see if that brings me back the last couple of weeks that I need. Click on OK and you may be surprised to see that that Task actually moved only a very small amount. And the reason it moved only a very small amount is because it’s actually dependent on this Consultancy Review. Now the management of my company are quite keen on this Consultancy Review, but let’s suppose that I go to them and I say, “Well I’m having trouble making this Schedule fit. One of the problems is waiting for this Consultancy Review to be completed. If I didn’t have to wait for that then what would happen to my Schedule?” Now, I may want to experiment with this and say, “Why don’t I take the Consultancy Review out of the picture and see what happens?” And I could, of course, delete that or change the dependencies. But there’s a feature now in Project 2010 which is extremely useful and a nice way to experiment with these situations. Because you can actually make a Task Inactive and having made it Inactive you can make it Active again. So I could say Consultancy Review on the Task Tab in the Schedule Group there’s an Inactivate button. Watch © Copyright 2008-2012 Simon Sez IT, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

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what happens when I click that. Now the dependencies related to that are now ignored. The Task becomes white on the Gantt Chart, as you can see. The lines are still there, but they’re grayed out. I know there was a dependency there but this Task has been made Inactive. So I can now say to the management, “If you remove that Consultancy Review that enables me to get started on Test Scripting, etcetera earlier, Testing earlier.” Everything still overlaps at the end, which is exactly how I need it to be and, in fact, now my Schedule actually fits. So everything’s looking much happier now. I just have one icon down here. One little red icon to tell me I’ve got an Over-allocation issue. So let’s deal with that next. First of all, I can get a quick view of what the problem is using the Task Inspector. So it displays on here, “Resources working beyond their maximum capacity, Generic Resource.” I knew that was the problem anyway. So let’s go in and have a look at exactly what the problem is for this Generic Resource. So let’s go into Resource Allocation View, click on Apply. Nate, all Nate’s problems are solved now so he no longer appears as an Over-allocated Resource. And what I have instead is an effectively a situation where I’ve got an Over-allocation of up to 1 person per period here. Let me just scroll across; see if I’ve got anything worse. No, it’s just in that period of testing in July, late June to the middle of August. So let’s see about replacing some Resource there. Now, of course, you should recall from earlier on that I could’ve just checked how much time I needed and when I come to re-assign Resource I can check that that person has the time available. But let’s go into Assign Resources now anyway. Project will tell me if it doesn’t work. Currently the Filter is on All Resources, so let me choose Group and Tester. And basically what I’m going to do is I can choose Anna, John, or Matthew and I’m going to reduce that to 200 and I think I’ll try to Assign Anna. Close and let’s see what happens. Now at the moment, I’m not getting any messages about any problems. Let’s just have a look at what it says here. You’ve added new Resources to this Task, is it because you wanted to reduce Duration? No. Increase total work? No. Reduce the hours that Resources work per day? Keep Duration and work the same? No, in fact with those none of the three apply because I actually removed a person and added a person at the same time. So, in fact, there’s going to make no difference whichever of those I use. So I’ll just click the middle one. I have no Resource Over-allocation or Conflict issues and I’m now pretty happy with my Schedule.

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So there we are. We pretty much covered all of the more advanced topics in Resourcing. A couple of other things that we’re going to look at later on, one or two things like Over-time, for instance. You may be aware of that anyway, but we’re going to cover those in the next few sections when we’re going to look at Costs and generally Financial Management in Microsoft Project 2010. So I look forward to seeing you for that.

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Chapter 4 – Costs Video: Cost Resource Types & Assigning Costs Toby: Hello and welcome to this first section on Costs, Budgeting, Financial Management, and Financial Reporting in Project 2010 Advanced. In this section, we’re going to start to look at a new project. We’re going to look at a house building project and I’ll tell you more about that in just a moment. But before we start I just need to explain one or two things. First of all, I am assuming you’ve got basic knowledge and some experience of working with Costs in Project 2010. In fact as far as Costs are concerned I’m going to need to review one or two basic things anyway, in order to put the new things into the right perspective. But I won’t be going into the basics in great detail. The second thing I need to point out is that we’ll be working in U.S. dollars in this section and the subsequent ones, but really all of these principles apply whichever currency you’re working in. I mentioned just now we’re going to start with a new project. It’s a building project. I’m going to try to use a fairly international approach to the terminology I use, but if you’re not familiar with building a house, don’t worry too much about it because you won’t need to know much about it and I’ll try to explain any unusual terms as we go along. So, let’s get started. Now over the years that Microsoft Project has been in existence, one of the areas where I think generally it’s tended to be underused is in the areas of Financial Management. And there are one or two important reasons for this and I need to talk to you about those before we start. First of all, when you’re doing something like building a house in this case, the project does not sit in isolation from the rest of the administration of the job. Even things like placing orders for Materials are an integral part of the whole project and generally speaking builders have their own financial packages. They may be using one of the popular packages such as Sage or perhaps one of the smaller desktop based packages. They may interface to a whole financial system based on a product like Oracle. And when you need an interface to an invoicing system, it’s very often the case that this is put together in a way that basically leaves Microsoft Project out of the whole job. The other problem in that situation is if you’re trying to run two systems, so you’ve got Costings in your Microsoft Project project plan and you’ve got Costings in your financial package, then keeping the two in step can become very difficult. So it’s quite often the case that people only

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do the Scheduling and possibly the Resourcing, two issues that we’ve looked at all ready on this course, and don’t worry about Costs too much. The other thing to be aware is that traditionally people have often exported information from Microsoft Project, particularly Cost information to Microsoft Excel and used Excel as their financial reporting tool. Of course Excel’s excellent for doing things like financial reporting and these facilities have actually been extended and improved in Project 2010. And later on in the course we’re going to look at some of those new and improved facilities. But at the moment we’re really going to concentrate on what’s available within Microsoft Project itself. Now this particular building company uses a Standard Resource Sheet for all of their building projects and later on we’re going to look at sharing this Resource Sheet between more than one project. But for the moment let’s concentrate on building one house on one plot. This is the sheet we’re going to use. It’s got actually hundreds of Resources on it and I want to look at some of the basic features in relation to Costs of these Resources. So the first thing I’m going to do is I’m going to look at the Work Resources. So put a Filter on so I’ve only got Work Resources, click on OK and let’s have a look at those. Now first of all we’re at the planning stage on this particular project and so virtually all of our Resources are Generic Resources. The Labor Resources not named individuals, but relating to essentially the sort of job that they do. Now when we’ve been planning we’ve put in what are effectively Budget Figures and the Budget Figures basically come out like this. Looking at Standard Rate first in this column, that’s the hourly rate for this type of Resource. So Labor, electrical labor, plumbing labor tends to be at a higher rate than say apprentice labor or window cleaning labor. And then for each Resource there is also an over-time rate. Over-time rate obviously will apply when that Resource is working outside normal hours, subject to confirmation, negotiation, etc. And then there is also a facility for a Cost per Use. Now all of the Work Resources here have a Cost per Use of zero. What Cost per Use really means is if I’m going to use a Work Resource or in fact any sort of Resource and there is a Cost just for using, not an hourly one, normally in additional to an hourly rate, then I specify that here. So, for instance, if I had to pay an agency a flat fee to get an Electrical Labor Resource I would probably put the flat fee in here. The next column is the Accrue At column and the Accrue At column basically tells me when I need to Accrue or plan to Accrue those Costs. Are they at the start of © Copyright 2008-2012 Simon Sez IT, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

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the job? So, for instance, if I got a plan to pay for demolition work at the beginning. Do I pay as I go along? Is it pro-rated? Or do I pay at the end? Again, we’ll come back to that a little bit later on. And then we also saw earlier on how we can apply different Calendars to Resources. All of these Resources, in this case, are on the Standard Calendar. And again, we’ll look at some variations to this later on; particularly how it affects over-time. You’ll be familiar with Max Units. That says at the moment that I’ve only got one each of these Resources, which is clearly going to affect my Schedule. We’ll come back to that later. And each of them is in a Group. So this is the basic information about my Work Resources, specifically relating to Costs. Now let’s look next at Materials. And I’m going to cover in this one or two of the rather different approaches to using Materials in relation to Costings, because different people do this in different ways and it’s worth knowing what the alternatives are. Now let’s look at this one here, Temporary Fencing. The material in this case is measured in yards and you would normally expect to see a Standard Rate per yard of this Material, in this case Temporary Fencing. Now what some people do with a Resource Sheet that’s going to be shared between a number of projects is that they always have this as zero. And when you actually use this Resource in your project, the first thing you have to do when you Assign the Resource to a Task is to put an amount in there. And anything that’s got an amount of zero says to you, “I haven’t put in a price in there yet.” This is a good approach in that it forces you to take a conscious action of putting a price here. Of course the down side of it is that you might forget. So supposing I know that generally speaking a yard of fencing costs me $30 and there’s no Cost per Use cost there, then I would actually put that figure in here in my Shared Resource Sheet. But as you can see some people do this a different way. If you take something like this one, Permit for Parking, again, you may want to leave that zero specifically because the cost of the permit will vary depending on which county, which region you’re in and so on or you may put what is effectively a Budgetary Figure in there. So for the purposes of this and subsequent units, I’m going to generally assume that where there’s a zero figure on this Resource Sheet that is my standard starting point for a project like this one, where there’s a zero I’m going to need to put a figure in there. If you look at the item immediately above Permit Parking, Permit Asset Protection, you see there’s a standard figure in there. Now let’s move down to this particular entry here which is Sites Toilet. Now this is a © Copyright 2008-2012 Simon Sez IT, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

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good example of two or three things. First of all, the cost of this particular material is per week but you cannot actually put a week in the Material Column because it’s a standard unit of time measure in Microsoft Project and you’re not allowed to use those in Materials. So the usual trick there is to just put a dot after it. So the Material unit is week with a full stop after it. And the cost per week is $60 and there is a Cost per Use of $80 which will basically be a delivery and collection fee. Similarly after it, Scaffold Hire costs $160 per week with a $200 delivery, erection, and dismantling and taking away fee. Another approach that people sometimes use in relation to Costs is to actually use Generic Resources.

So they’ll have an entry on perhaps a Resource Sheet in a Template saying

Equipment Hire, possibly with a zero there and then what you will do when you actually use this Resource in a project is to put what is effectively a Budgetary Figure in there for Equipment Hire and then as the specific items of equipment start to get listed in your project schedule you could perhaps reduce this one and eventually it will be totally replaced by the specific Resources that come under Equipment Hire.

Now of course as you’ll know, hopefully from your own

knowledge of Microsoft Project and from things we talked about earlier on in the course, you might set this up as a Cost Resource anyway. But you can use that approach within Materials as well. The other column of great importance is the Accrue At column and what this specifies is how and when Microsoft Project is going to charge Resource Costs to a Task, either at the Standard Rate or where relevant of the over-time rate. Now by Default this is pro-rated, but for Materials it’s very often start. You basically have to buy and probably pay for the Materials before you start work on the Task. Now this isn’t always the case, sometimes it’s possible to pro-rate the Cost of Materials, particularly if they’re delivered over a period of time during the project and you may want to actually put those into the books for the project as you consume them. But for Materials it’s very often at the start. And as we’ll see later on when we start looking at the Budget and the life of the Budget of a project, this is very important, particularly in relation to Materials. Finally we have two Resources on this particular project of Type Cost and they’re actually set up differently. Ones called Administration. Ones called Administration Expenses. Now the first one, the one that’s just called Administration, if I open it up you’ll see that it’s not a Budget © Copyright 2008-2012 Simon Sez IT, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

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Resource, it’s just a figure that’s in there called Administration and in fact there’s no Cost Assigned to it. We would have to Assign that on an As Allocated basis. So if we’ve got a particular Task that Administration is Allocated to then we would give it a Cost at that point. So let’s go into the Resource Usage View. We can see that Administration is assigned to the Task Preparation and if we look at the Assignment we have zero for the Cost Value. Let’s say we’re going to count on $100 for the Cost of Administration on that particular Assignment, click on OK, and we now have a specific cost for that Cost Resource. Effectively I want a single Task and a single Assignment for that Resource. So if I now go back into Gantt Chart View, expand the Prepare Task and go into the Preparation Task here, I can see a figure Administration $100, which is the figure that I’ve just entered for that particular activity within the Preparation of the building project. So let’s look at this second Cost Resource, Administration Expenses. It is set up as a Budget Resource. You should recall this from the earlier unit. It’s quite important and it means we can put in a Budgetary Figure for a particular cost for the whole project and then either replace it by specific costs as we need to or even use it as an overall pole for things like Expenses in the whole project on an ongoing basis. So if we want to Assign that and Assign the Budget Cost, you should remember how we do that. First of all we have to Assign it to the Project Summary Task. So let’s just make sure we’ve got that shown. We have. So Assign the Resource which is Administration Expenses. Now we can’t actually put a Cost in here and in order to illustrate how to put in that Budgetary Cost, I could either use Task Usage View or Resource Usage View. So if I look at Task Usage View, Apply that. You can see a row here for Administration Expenses. I then need to show the Budget Cost Field which is just here and there I can enter a Budgetary Figure for Admin. So let’s say my Budgetary Figure is $300 for Administration Expenses on the project. So there we are. That’s my Budgetary Cost for that Budget Cost Resource. So in this section we’ve reviewed the types of Resource and specifically the costs associated with each of those types, how we define them, how we set them up. We’ve looked at things like Accrual Rules. We’ve looked at over-time and we’ve looked at the different Resource Types – Material, Work, Cost. And hopefully some of this has extended your knowledge of how to do this in Microsoft Project anyway. In the next section, we’re going to turn our attention to the

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actual cost of this project and we’re also going to look at some of the more unusual requirements for defining and assigning costs on a project of this type. So, I look forward to seeing you then.

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Video: Defining Costs Toby: Hello and welcome to the second unit on Costs, Budgeting, and Finance in Microsoft Project 2010 Advanced. In the first unit, we looked at Assigning Costs, the meaning the various aspects and types of Cost. In this section, we’re going to look at the Cost of our project and some of the unusual Costing situations that Microsoft Project 2010 can deal with. So, time to start. Now there’s still a little bit of work to do on this project before we can Baseline it. But let’s first of all have a look at Costs so far. So Project Tab, Project Information, click on the Statistics button, and we can see that so far we’ve got a Duration of just over 83 days, a total amount of work of 54 days, which as we’ll see later is not really representative of the current situation, and then a Cost of just under $102,000. So just bear that figure in mind as we work through the next section or so. Let’s now take a look at the first of those special or unusual Cost situations and we’re going to start with one where we’re going to Assign a Fixed Cost not to a Resource, but directly to a Task. Let’s suppose that in the preparation for this building we use a site office where we can do the paperwork, we can spread everything out on a desk. We only need it for the beginning of the job, so during the preparation stage here, which has currently got four Tasks within it, each with its own Material and Work Resources. Let’s introduce another Task which is just the renting of an office. Now I could, of course, set that office up as a Resource, but I can also set it up directly as a Task. So if I Insert a Task here, I’m going to call it “Site Office.” And having Inserted that Task I can now put a Cost on it without saying anything about how much work it is, other Resources involved and so on. So on the View Menu choose the Cost Table and I can just put a Fixed Cost in against the Task. Let’s suppose it’s going to cost us $120 for the week. There are no Resources Assigned. The Cost of that Task of course contributes to the overall preparation cost, which I can see here and it’s been unnecessary for me to Assign Resources in order to get this cost onto the Schedule. Now notice it’s in a specific Fixed Cost column on the Gantt Chart. Now note of course that having assigned that Fixed Cost to this Task, I can also choose using the Cost Table the Accrual method. It Defaults to Start, of course, you can change that Default in

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your Microsoft Project Options, and you can select from the normal range here. But, in this case, this will Accrue at the start. Now we’re going to look at another special case of Cost. And this is not a particularly unusual one at all. This is one where we are going to Assign a Resource to a Task but, in this case, it’s the cost of the Resource that is Fixed. And the type of Resource with a Fixed Cost in this case is a Work Resource. Now the particular example I’m going to use here is where I’m getting legal services on the preparation of the permits for this particular building work and it’s being given to me at a Fixed Fee of $150. So it doesn’t matter how much work is involved, how long it takes, the consultant’s going to charge me $150. Now first of all I’m going to set up a suitable Resource; I’ve actually set one up all ready. So let me just Filter down here on Work Resources. You’ll see the last one is Legal Services. Let me change this particular one to be Fixed Fee and I could obviously enter the, add in more information such as Cost here, but let me just click that and now look at the entry where the standard rate for this service is going to remain at zero dollars per hour. I am not going to make the cost of using these legal services dependent on the amount of work, the amount of time they work on the building project. There’s no over-time rate. I only have a Fixed Fee so I put that in the Cost per Use Field. That means each time I use this on a Task within my project it’ll cost me $150. So let’s now go back to the Gantt Chart. Let’s choose the Permits Task here. Let’s go into Assign Resources. I’ve all ready got a Filter on Resources Work, so let’s go down here and find this Fixed Fee Legal. There it is, click on Assign. Now although the amount of work doesn’t matter, I do need to have a number of units in this case 100%. Otherwise this will affect the Duration of the Task and push it back down to being a milestone with a zero Duration. So I do need to have unit assigned there, although it doesn’t affect the cost in any way. Close this. Now if I go into Task Usage View, let’s go down and look at the Permits. Look at the Cost and now I can see $570 total cost for that Task, made up of $85 Building Permits, 275 Asset Protection, 60 for Parking, and 150 for Legal Services – Fixed Fee. Now the set of special cases we’re going to look at again is not unusual but it’s important to be able to deal with it in the correct way. And what we’re going to look at is the way that the Costs of specific Resources can vary. And we’re going to look at it here in two different ways. First of all we may have a Resource that’s going to work on our project and the rate that we pay that © Copyright 2008-2012 Simon Sez IT, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

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Resource may depend on the Tasks that they’re performing. Now sometimes people get around this by setting up two different Resources with two different pay rates, but of course that then leaves you open to having problems with Over-allocation of the Resource. So Project contains some very flexible facilities to deal this situation. And the way it does it is to have Cost Rate Tables where you can actually Assign a Resource to a Task at different Cost rates depending on the nature of the Task. The second special case, again often combined with this situation that we’re going to deal with, is one where the rate for a particular Resource may vary. For instance, it may go up at the beginning of a financial year or there may be certain times of the year or even times of the week when the cost of using that Resource is different. So we’re going to take a couple of example and look at both of those situations now. Now to illustrate this I’m going to back to the Resource Sheet. It’s still Filtered on Work, so I’m going to look at this particular Resource, Labor General. Now Labor General in a building context can mean somebody who does pretty much any kind of work on the building site. But we’re going to look at the fact that we may have somebody who does this type of work but actually is capable of more or less technical, professional, or demanding Tasks. And we can actually set that person up with in fact five, up to five different pay rates corresponding to these five letters – A, B, C, D, E. Now I’ve currently set up only their Standard Rate in the Resource Sheet View, which you can see here, $35, $50. I’m going to set up an A-rate, leave it at that, but I’m also going to have a B-rate. This is a rate that we use when the person’s doing work which we might get somebody less skilled or qualified to do, but because this person is on site they may accept doing the work at the lower rate rather than finish work early or not have anything to do that day. So this person’s B-rate for me is going to be $30 instead of $35 and the over-time rate is at $40 instead of 50. So I’ve now got an A-rate and a B-rate for Labor General, click on OK. The A-rate is still shown here. Now let’s see how we can apply that to different Tasks. So let’s switch from Resource Sheet View to Resource Usage View. There’s Labor General. We can see Footings and Slabs Treatments, this is Pesticides and Fungicides Treatments, Concrete Stumps, Timber Floor, Appliances, Fixtures, and Polish Floors. Well, let’s suppose that when this person is working on Fixtures, which currently they’re getting paid $280 for that job, let’s assume that’s an A-rate job. In fact if you double click on this entry, which is basically an Assignment Information box comes up, so we’ve got an Assignment, Cost Rate Table to use © Copyright 2008-2012 Simon Sez IT, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

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on this Assignment is A. Whereas if that person’s polishing floors, which is something that’s much less skilled for any of my staff to do, if I double click on Polish Floors I can say that Task, which also was going to earn this person $280 is actually a Cost Rate Table B job. Change to B, click on OK, and of course the cost of the project has gone from $280 down to $240 and I can choose other Tasks here. For instance I might say that the Concrete Stumps job is much less demanding, there’s going to be other people there, more specialist people will be able to help this guy out. Click on B and again the cost of the project goes down. So that’s how I can assign two different pay rates and in fact up to five Cost Rates to a Resource. Now let’s look at our other situation where we have variation over time. If we look at the same Resource and the work that Resource is doing on the Timber Floor. Towards the end of March and the early part of April we can see the daily cost of that Resource here, 280, 280, 280, going down to 35 for a little bit of work left over there, one hour probably. Let’s suppose that from the 1st of April the rate of pay for this person is going to be increased. Now the way we do that is we go to the Individual Resources Resource Information and we currently have for the A pay rate $35 per hour standard, $50 per hour over-time per Use Cost. Let’s suppose now that we’re going to bring in a new rate from April 1, 2012 and the new rate is going to be basically a 10% increase, more or less. Let’s say that’s going to be $38 and this is going to be $55. Click on OK and see what it does here to our cost. Now again look in that same area, 280, 280, 304, and then 38 for that last hour. Now we can apply several of those different timed rates. This will cover things like pay raises, but it can also cover seasonal pay rates or perhaps particular rates where somebody is say in demand for a particular type of Task. So, for instance, maybe at Christmas time or summer vacation time. Somebody’s rate may be higher or lower. And, of course, these can be applied to all of the different five alternative rates for a Resource. So there we are. We’ve looked at Fixed Costs for a Task. We’ve looked at Fixed Cost Resource Assignments for a Task. And we’ve looked at the use of the Rate Tables and how we can vary Cost Rates over time. In the next section, we’re going to start looking at Baselining and Tracking Progress and their affect on Cost. So, I’ll see you then.

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Video: Baselining & Tracking Costs Toby: Hello. This is the third unit on Costs in this course on Microsoft Project 2010 Advanced and in this unit we’re going to start to look at Tracking. Now as usual I’m going to assume that you’ve basically done some Tracking; you have a good idea of how to track progress on a project. I would like to say before we start that many people only use Microsoft Project to do an Outline Schedule for a project and don’t really go any farther with its use and this is another area where a lot of people could probably get more out of Microsoft Project than they do all ready by understanding a little bit better about how you can set up Costs, Monitor Costs, Manage Costs, and Report on Costs. So what we’re going to do now with our building project is begin by Saving a Baseline and then I’ll discuss with you how things go beyond that point. Now it’s very important to put the Concept of a Baseline into context. There are not many projects large or small where the project manager knows absolutely everything about what’s going to happen before the project starts. And there are very, very few where any plan or Schedule that’s done early on in the project will remain completely true throughout the life of the project. The unexpected happens, things change, or perhaps on a more planned and predictable basis and as in the case of this particular building project, I have Generic Resources Assigned at the moment. I haven’t put individual names on anything. During the life of the project I’ll gradually replace those Generic Resources by specific ones and by its nature the Baseline and some of the detail of the Costs will change. So I’m trying to be reasonably realistic here. I’ve put all of the Resources that I’m aware of. I’ve got all the Tasks on I believe need to be performed, but I also know that things never go exactly to plan. So let’s Save that Baseline but know that things are going to change now throughout the life of the project. So to do the Baseline, as usual, on the Project Tab, Set Baseline; we’re going to set a Baseline. We’re going to do it for the entire project, click on OK, and the Baseline is Saved. Let’s go into Project Information, click on Statistics, and you can see some details now. We have Current Start 10th of January, Finish 4th of May. Baseline same dates. Duration has some question marks over it, a couple of things we’ve still got with question marks on, the actual amount of work in days, 57 days, which will go up because of the usage in our Resources, in some cases, and a Cost at the moment Baselined at just over $103,000.

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So let’s look at progress at the end of the first week on the project. The only Tasks due to be performed during the first week were these under the Prepare Stage, mostly due to be finished, one of them Project Setup and Equipment Hire will spill over into the second week. But what I’m going to do in order to Report Progress is I’m going to set the Status Date to the end of the first week. In fact I’m going to set it to the Saturday, so that all of Friday’s work will be completed. Set the Status Date there and then I’m going to do Update Project and as I’m sure you’ll be familiar, Update Work has Complete Through. Basically the two options I’ve got here to say that I’m only going to record progress for this Tasks that are actually completed, the complete only or I can Update Progress for everything to be at the correct percentage. I’m going to choose the first option at the end of the first week. No re-scheduling needed and then the entire project I’m going to apply this to. So click on OK. The first four Tasks are marked as fully complete and the second one is marked, it turns out 44% complete. Now, of course, once we’ve got some Actuals recorded we probably want to look at Progress and in Project 2010 there are several ways of doing this. Very simple way of course is to look at the Project Information, click on Statistics again, and we’ve now got three rows of information, in fact four rows really. We’ve got the Current Situation, the Baseline, the Actuals, and the Remaining. So the Actuals include the Cost Figures of what so far we’ve seen to have spent and how much Cost remains. Another way of course of getting a quick snapshot of how things are going is to use the Reports, significantly changed in Project 2010 in terms of let’s look at an Overview Report, Project Summary. We now see that as a Print Preview in Backstage View. We can Zoom In on that and scroll around it to check Progress. So, for instance, Dates, Duration, Work, Cost, Schedule, Baseline, Variance; Variance figures are usually very important. Currently we have a zero Variance on Cost, zero Variance on Work, and zero Variance on Duration. Bear in mind we’ve still got question marks on Duration there anyway and we have a good Summary of how we are going against the Schedule. But one of the much more detailed and in many ways more useful way of looking at Progress at any stage in the project is to look at the Cost Table. So let’s have a look at the content of the Cost Table. Switch that on, slide this over, give ourselves a little bit more room to look at it, and as you can see we have a Total Cost we started out with of $103, 036.17. Total Cost at the moment is the same figure. We’ve got no Variance © Copyright 2008-2012 Simon Sez IT, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

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recorded at all at the moment and we have Actuals against the top few Tasks in the Schedule. The ones that we’ve completed, there is no remaining Cost involved. Now you may think that well with this Task here, which is still in progress, why is there no Cost remaining? Well of course, the Cost is Assigned depending on how we’ve defined Accrual. And if we set Accrual at the start, as soon as the Task is started, then the Cost of that Task is affectively gone into the book. So let me make a start now on some of these early Tasks. Let’s start with the Demolition Task. Now the Demolition Task has these Resources Assigned. There is a Tree Removal to do. I’ve actually discovered there wasn’t one tree on the site, there’s actually two to remove. So that’ll put the cost up a little bit and then I’ve got an allowance for Demolition of just over $1,000. Now that was originally there to allow for a Labor Cost effectively; so what I’m going to do is I’m going to Assign a different Resource and specifically say that it’s three days work for somebody and I’m going to Allocate a person to it. Cut Brick Openings, I don’t actually need that anymore so I’m going to get rid of that and the Bin associated with rubbish removal is still there at a Cost of $495, so that’s fine. So I just need to replace the Labor Resource here. Now if I know the person that I need I can go straight to that person, if not I can use the Filtering etcetera within the Assign Resources Dialog. In this case, I know who I need and I’m looking for, there’s the guy I want, Dan Templeton; he’s one of my general guys, and he’s going to do three days work on that, click on OK. If I actually go back into that now and look at the Cost again, I’ll see that the three days work of Dan’s time is actually at his rate. So the Cost of that has actually gone down to $840, although of course one of the other Costs has gone up. Now for the next two Tasks I’m going to Allocate specific Resources. So starting with Set Out, currently I have all work being done with a Budgeted Cost of $720.

I’m going to do a

replacement. So let’s go into Assign Resources. Let’s click on Replace. We already have the Filter in place for Work, so this is a job for Kim, click on OK. I can now go to the next Task, I don’t have to close the Dialog. Again, the Labor, this is a Generic Cost Assigned and again I can put in a replacement and that’s going to be another job for Kim I think. Click on OK, Close, and now I’ve got my alternative Resources Allocated, specific names in place now. So let’s now see what that’s done to our Cost. Let’s look in the Cost Table again and this is something that unfortunately doesn’t happen that often on a project and that is that the Costs © Copyright 2008-2012 Simon Sez IT, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

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have actually gone slightly down. If you look at the overall Costs now, it’s just $102,666. We have an overall Variance of -$370, you see it in the brackets there and we can see where that Variance has come from. It’s come from basically a reduction in the Set Out Cost where a specific Resource has come in under our Budget Cost and similarly in the Site Set Task, again, a specific Resource has gone in place and brought that Cost down a little as well. So overall we’ve reduced the Cost there. We’ve also reduced the Cost on the Demolition a little partly because we didn’t have to do the Brick Opening that we thought we needed to do. So let’s now look at another update on Progress. Now, in this case, I’m going to update the Status but on a Task-by-Task basis. There are only a couple of Tasks that should have been in progress for that week anyway. So let me set the Status Date to January 21st. Let me go back to that one outstanding Task that wasn’t completed from here, which was Project Set Up and Equipment Hire. And of course as you know, if you look at the General Tab you have a Percent Complete box here which I can just wind-up to 100%. That Task is now marked at Complete. Now let me go down to Demolition. Now I could follow the same principle there, but it’s sometimes useful to look at more information on a Task. Now, as you should know, if you go to the Properties Group on the Task Tab, this button here will actually cause the screen to split and you have the Task Details Form at the bottom. We can then see instantly a good overview of everything that’s involved in this project. We haven’t got any Percent Complete Figures at all. According to the current date, it was due to start on January 17th and finish on January 20th. Let’s assume that in fact it’s not been completed at all and that it’s only half done. There’s been some problem. It’s a Demolition Task, maybe the weathers been really bad and we’ve done about half of the work but it’s not completed yet. Now this is the point where Project is going to have to do its work for us to say, “Okay, you’ve done half of the three days work, but the rest of it will now need to be re-scheduled.” Now if I look at the dates on the project I can see that Current is still set at the same dates. It’s important to recognize that when I tell Project that only half of that amount of work has been done, that’s all that I’ve told it. I haven’t told it, for instance, that the Duration is longer. There’s actually more than three days work to do. I haven’t told it when the job will finish, when the balance of the work will be done, and so on. And, in fact, if you look at the dates down here the Current or Planned Dates are still the same as they were. The Baseline is as it was when we © Copyright 2008-2012 Simon Sez IT, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

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Saved the Baseline. The Actual now has an Actual start date and that is placed as soon as I record some work done on the Task, but no actual Finish Date. Let’s go back to the Planned ones and let’s suppose that what I’ve decided here is that I’m going to Manually say that this work is going to be finished basically two days late, well a day-and-a-half late. So it’s going to be finished on Tuesday. I’m going to change the Planned Finish to Tuesday the 24th. Then click OK. The Task is still 50% complete, but of course the whole Schedule has pulled back. Now what I might do at this point is to put an additional Resource on to try to win back a day. So one of the ironies of this situation is it’s a situation that happens all the time when you’re working on projects, is that sometimes slippage like this can actually show up as a positive thing, in terms of Costs. Because what happens is when you look at the Variance to Date you’ll find that so far you’re actual Costs are below the Baseline because you’re not spending the money quickly enough, not because you’re not going to need to spend the money but because the projects being delayed. And there’s one other interesting effect to note in this particular case and that is that if you look at Variance, which still means we’re still running below the Baseline Cost but the numbers are different. These are just the same. We haven’t changed the Cost on the Demolition Task compared to last time we looked at it. We’ve moved some of the Cost back a little bit but it’s still only $90 below the original Baseline Cost. This still adds up to 370, but our Variance is now only -301. Why is that? Well we can find out, I’m sure if we look further down the project, here we’ve got an increase in Cost of a Task that hasn’t started yet. Why have we got an increase in Cost at a Task that hasn’t started yet? Well it’s because the delay caused by the delay here has pushed this Task back in time such that we’re now using the increased rate for one of our Resources whose rate goes up on April the 1st. And this is typical the way that Cost can vary in quite subtle and sometimes hidden ways. So we’ve looked at some of the aspects of recording time on a project, Tracking Progress on the project, the impact they can have on Cost, and so on. And in the next unit, we’re going to follow that up a little bit more and start to look at an overview as we progress on how Progress with Cost is going. So, I’ll see you in the next unit.

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Video: Tracking Costs Continued Toby: Hello and welcome to the fourth unit on Cost in Microsoft Project 2010 Advanced. In this unit, we’re going to carry on looking at Tracking Cost through the life of a project. And first of all we’re going to look at some very important related Microsoft Project options. Now the options that either directly or indirectly affect Cost are in two groups. The first groups on the Schedule Tab towards the bottom, just below the Calculation option and there are a couple of things there. One of them is that when you update Task Status this determines whether you automatically update Resource Data. So, for example, if a Resource is evenly assigned on a Task and you mark the Task as 50%, this will mark the Resources work on that Task as 50% as well. And if you were looking say in Resource Usage View, that’s what you’d see. The second one says Insert Projects are Calculated like Summary Tasks. What this basically means is that if you Insert a project and when you do a Calculation, the project is treated, the Inserted project is treated as though it was just another Summary Task. So Calculations are done on there in the same way. The third one really is probably the most important one and that is Actual Costs are always Calculated by project. Now if this is set, it means that you cannot say part way through a Task put in an Actual for a Cost. Project will always Calculate the Actual for you based on Percent Complete, Rates for the Resources that are on the Task, and so on. And if you do put a Manual Cost in Project next time it Calculate will just override that Cost. It also means that you can’t Import Cost Values. A 100% completion situation, that’s different. You can put the Manual Cost in there. And finally right at the bottom, Default Fixed Cost Accrual Start. Most people have this set at Start, for particularly with things like Materials, it very often is Accrual is at the Start. But you can change the Default there if you want to. The second little group of options are on the Advanced Tab and again they’re towards the bottom and one or two of these we’ve already will have seen the impact of. Calculation Options for the project, this one is quite important. Move End of Completed parts after Status Date back to Status Date. Let’s suppose that we’ve got a Task which is not due to finish yet, we set our Status Date, say to the end of a week when we’re doing an update. We say that Task is now complete. If that’s the case, it will actually move the end of the completed part which was due to complete later than the Status Date back to the Status Date. We can also have an additional optional

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setting here and move the start of any remaining parts back to the Status Date. So that means if, in fact, we’ve sort of if you like got ahead of the game we are actually running a little bit ahead of time, it will Schedule the start of what remains back to the date we’re putting the Status on. Now in a similar vein, Move Start of Remaining Parts before the Status Date Forward to the Status Date, if we’ve actually got remaining parts and they appear not to have started yet then they will be moved to start from the Status Date. So it automatically will Schedule work that isn’t done yet or a proportion of work that isn’t done yet to start on today’s date. Now probably the best way to demonstrate that is to actually demonstrate it and you can also see that it will have an impact on Costs as well. So let’s take a look at this Setting Out Task here, which is a two day Task. It’s Scheduled to start on the 25th of January and finish on January 26th. Now the last update I did was for an earlier date than that. Let’s suppose that on the 28th I do an update to say that this Task is 50% complete. Okay, so I’ve set my Status Date to January 28th and what I’m now going to do for the Set Out Task is to Record the Percent Complete as 50%. Let’s see what happens to that two day Task when I do that. What you can see happen is that it gets split. Now Project cannot assume certain things and it does assume other things. So, for instance, first of all it had a Baseline and Scheduled to start date of January 25th and it assumes that the first half of the work, the one day of work, it’s two day task, was done on January 25th, so that’s when that Task occurs and when that Cost is Accrued. The 50% of the Task, the one day that isn’t done yet is Scheduled for the next working day, which will be January 30th, which is a Monday. So there’s the Task and you can see how Project has split it. Now clearly this has an effect on Cost. We’ve got that half of the Cost is one weeks Costs and this half is in the other weeks Costs. Now those options within Project, obviously primarily Scheduling options, but they can also affect Costs in the way you’ve just seen as well. So we’ve seen the Cost Table for Tasks and this is an excellent way at looking at how the Costs on the project are going. We’re still on this project a little way below our Baseline Budget and we can see where the Variances lie in relation to Tasks. There is also a very useful Cost Table for Resources and if I go say into Resource Sheet View and then specify Table of Cost, I can look at Cost and I can see Cost Variances. I can see one here, Tree Removal where the Cost © Copyright 2008-2012 Simon Sez IT, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

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Variance went up because we found we had an additional tree and in fact all of these have Filter facilities. So, for instance, I can look at everything that is non-zero. There’s only one there and I can see the only Resource Variance at the moment is that one, $150 there. The other changes were down to replacement of Resources and the individual assignments didn’t vary, they were just replaced. And finally, in this unit, don’t forget that you can change the Default whereby the updating of Task Status and the associated Costs, update Resource Status and the associated Costs. But if you do that it is on a project wide basis and that means you probably have quite a lot of work to do. You’d have to have a pretty good reason to do that. In the next unit, we’re going to look at Earned Value. I’ll see you then.

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Video: Earned Value Toby: In this unit on Microsoft Project 2010 Advanced, we’re going to look at Earned Value Calculations and the type of Earned Value information we can get on a project.

Now I

mentioned a little while ago that sometimes a delay on a project can actually make things look good because you appear to be spending less money than you budgeted and maybe somebody would look at it and say, “Wow that project is costing less than we thought it was going to.” Of course the point that people then sometimes miss is that that’s because you haven’t been getting the work done. What Earned Value Calculations do is to actually compare the situation you’re in on a project with where you should be, both in terms of how much you’ve spent and how much of the work you’ve actually completed. And this, I suppose, is a very simplistic definition of what Earned Value is, that is how much have you done, how much work have you completed to earn the value that you’ve achieved. And that’s what we’re going to look at in this unit. Now in order to look at Earned Value we’re going to Apply the Earned Value Table to this Gantt Chart. So, go down into More Tables, there are actually three Earned Value Tables. We’re going to take the Basic one to begin with, click on Apply, drag it over here, and there are really three in particular columns that I want to look at to begin with, BCWS, BCWP, and ACWP and I’m going to explain each of those in turn. Now let’s begin with BCWS. BCWS stands for Budgeted Cost of Work Scheduled. It’s often referred to as PV as well and it’s a measure of the Budgeted Cost of individual Tasks based on the Resources and any Fixed Costs that are assigned to the Task when you Schedule them. So basically that’s the Budgeted Cost what the Schedule says we should have spent, if you like. The second column, the Earned Value column or BCWP column; BCWP stands for Budgeted Cost of Work Performed and what this says is given the Task Budget and how much we should have spent and given the actual Duration of the Tasks and the amount of work we’ve actually done, what’s the Earned Value? How much of the Value have we actually achieved? And in this case the Value we’ve achieved is $5,552, which basically says this is what we’ve done. The 6,972 is the Planned Value, the 5,552 is the Earned Value. Now, the third column is Actual Cost or ACWP – Actual Cost of Work Performed. And this actually measures the Cost of completing the Tasks that we’ve completed. So the difference © Copyright 2008-2012 Simon Sez IT, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

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between this and the previous two is this is the amount of work, this is what we actually spent to earn the value. The second one is the Value that we Earned and the first one is the Value that we’d planned to have Earned. So we’ve actually Earned less Value than we should have. If you like, we’re behind Schedule in a sense, but the Cost of Earning that Value is below what we thought it was going to be. We then have five other Fields that are Calculated by Project and they’re the five here. Let me quickly run through what they are. SV stands for Schedule Variance, CV – Cost Variance, EAC is Estimate at Completion, BAC is Budgeted at Completion, and finally VAC is Variance at Completion. So the Budgeted Cost $103,036.17, we now have an Estimated Cost of 94,647 and a Variance is the difference between them. The Schedule Variance and the Cost Variance, obviously, are based on the figures that we’ve put in so far. So CV, Cost Variance, represents the Cost difference between Actual Cost and Planned Costs. SV, Schedule Variance, stands for the Cost difference between Current Progress and the Baseline Plan and SV is Calculated as EV minus PV. Now whilst these figures are very helpful and give us good insight into how our project is going, there are some indicators that are built from these figures that can give us an even clearer and in many cases simpler picture of how things are going. Now if I change the Table again and this time choose Earned Value Cost Indicators and Apply that and look at the Cost Indicators here, I have a couple of very straight forward Index Figures which give me a good idea of how well my project is going. And let me begin with this CV Percent figure. Now CV Percent stands for Cost Variance Percent and Project Calculates this by dividing CV, the Cost Variance, bear in mind my Costs are slightly under at the moment, by the Earned Value and coming up with a Percentage, a figure that it multiplies by a hundred to give me a Percentage. And so I currently have a CV Percent of 8% that is covering the Cost of all of the Costs so far. That’s not the Cost for the whole project, it’s just the Value that I’ve earned so far. It also has this figure, which is CPI and CPI is the Cost Performance Index. Project Calculates this by dividing the Earned Value by the AC, the Actual Cost, and this again gives me an idea of how things are going. It’s basically saying the Earned Value is a little bit higher than one, which is a good thing always to find. So, what I’ve got from what I’ve done is slightly better than what I thought I was going to have got from what I’d done. © Copyright 2008-2012 Simon Sez IT, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

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So CPI is Calculated by dividing EV by AC and you can trace this back to a fairly basic Calculation, but fundamentally what this CPI figure gives you is a good indicator of how well your project is going from the point of view of Cost. And a value above one is a good thing. You can further see broken further down in the column against individual Tasks or Summary Tasks similar numbers.

For instance, Demolition and Set Out both seem to have gone

particularly well. And as the project progresses CPI is a great indicator, a simple straight forward indicator from the point of view of Cost. Now let’s look at an indicator from the point of view of Schedule. Now the companion Table we can use to look at Schedule is this one, Earned Value Schedule Indicators. Again, a couple of additional columns there. The SV column, the Schedule Variance column shows us being behind Schedule. Percentages Calculated here is -20%. This is based on the Tasks so far split down according to here. For instance, these two, start of these two Tasks has been delayed and an SPI Value is Calculated. SPI stands for Schedule Performance Index and Project Calculates it by dividing EV by PV and basically a figure of one means we’re exactly on Schedule, above one means we’re ahead of Schedule, and below one means we’re behind Schedule. So in the early stages of the current project an SPI of 0.8 indicates that we’re behind Schedule. Now there is one other aspect of Earned Value, which is very important to understand and that is the difference between Percent Complete and Physical Percent Complete. If you leave Project to Calculate the amount of work that’s been done on a Task, the Progress on a Task, it will base it on the information you give it about say 50% complete, 25% to its Earned Value Calculations accordingly. But if you want to record the Physical amount of Work, how much is actually being done, you can get Project to use your Physical Percent Complete figures instead. Now, first of all, it’s possible to set up a Default in the Options for Project and we’ll look at that in just a moment. Or you can actually do this on a Task-by-Task basis. So let’s start with setting up the Option. Now the options for Earned Value are on the Advanced Tab and by project, this is our Greendale Plot 03 Project. The Default Task, Earn Value Method, for this project is Percent Complete rather than Physical Percent Complete which means that Project is going to Calculate that for us every time. This will Apply to all new Tasks that are created. Worth mentioning here that we © Copyright 2008-2012 Simon Sez IT, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

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can also specify the Baseline for Earned Value Calculations. Now clearly when Project is comparing Earned Value and Progress in general, it will need to know which Baseline to compare it with. We’ve only got one at the moment, the one that we’ve saved so far. But if we’d actually adopted a later Baseline we could choose that here for our Earned Value Calculations instead. So let’s leave that set at Percent Complete and let’s look at how we would actually vary it by Task. So, first of all, let me include a new column; Insert a Column in here and I’m going to Insert the Column in here. There we go. Physical Percent Complete in this Table. It’s all zero at the moment, of course. And let me choose one of the Tasks I’ve actually done some work on. Let’s go for the Demolition Task. Open the Task up and say on the Advanced Tab, it by Default like all the other Tasks, the Earned Value Method here is set at Percent Complete. Let’s set it at Physical Percent Complete, click on OK. Now notice what happens, because I’ve got a 0% here, the Earned Value Calculation has dropped back to zero and greatly changed my variances. See I’ve actually now got to say in here what the Physical Percent Complete is. Now if I’m going to say, well in fact that was 100% complete, then that’s fine, and everything’s back to the way it was. But if I actually say that the level completion of that was say not a 100% but let’s say 90%, then clearly that affects my Earned Value Calculation as well. If I drag this back over here I can see that all of my headline figures have changed. Let’s suppose I make a really drastic change to it and say that it’s say 50%, in fact, and then go back into the Tables and look at my CPI Value again. I can see my CPI Value which was really quite healthy has now taken a definite turn for the worse and instead of being well over one has now dropped below one. So there are many project situations where using Physical Percent Complete can give a more accurate picture of Progress, both in terms of Cost and in terms of Schedule. But as you can see from what we’ve just done, it does involve a reasonably greater amount of work for the project manager who is updating the Schedule, particularly if it’s done a Task-by-Task basis for the whole project. It may be there are just parts of a project where you want to use the Physical Percent Complete and in each case it may not be too bad, but if it’s your Default and it’s for the whole project, you need to be aware of the consequences in terms of the amount of work. So that’s pretty much it on Earned Value in terms of what the terms are, what they mean, and how you can interpret some of these figures. In the next and final unit on Costs in this course, we’re © Copyright 2008-2012 Simon Sez IT, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

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going to look at some of the Reporting options on Costs within Project 2010. So please join me for that.

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Video: Reporting Options Toby: Hello and welcome to this last unit on Costs in Microsoft Project 2010 Advanced. In this unit, we’re going to look at Viewing and Printing Reports on Costs within Project and I’d like to explain a couple of things about it that may come to you as a bit of a surprise if you’re not particularly familiar with the 2010 version. And the first of these is that with Office 2010 the approach to Printing across all of the various components of Office 2010 was largely standardized and now Printing is basically done from Backstage View. And although, of course, each of the components has its own requirements in relation to Printing and Previewing of documents, there is a high level of commonality in the approach that’s taken. One consequence of this is that it’s quite a sharp difference in the way this works in Project 2010 compared to earlier versions. And I’d like to talk to you about those differences first. Now one of the things that strikes people when they look at Printing in Project 2010 if they’ve used earlier versions is that it seems a little bit clumsy and clunky and you might look at it and think, “Well that seems very awkward compared to what we had before.” And to some extent I would probably go along with that, however, there are a couple of very major items of mitigation to bear in mind in relation to that. The first of them is that in Project 2010 there is now a very sophisticated system of Visual Reporting and I’m going to spend a reasonable amount of time on this course later on, talking about Visual Reporting and from my own use of Project 2010 and my own experience so far, I would say that Visual Reporting is going to tend to be the way that I go in terms, particularly of Ad-Hoc Reporting on Progress on a project; not just in relation to Cost but in relation to all aspects of Progress on a project. So to a large extent, I believe Visual Reporting will or in some cases has already replaced my previous Reporting Tools. The second important point is that there are other facilities, such as Print to .pdf which also have a valuable part to play. One of the advantages of Print to .pdf, for example, is that you can actually provide a pretty Customized View or Report on a project to somebody who doesn’t have Microsoft Project installed themselves. So there’s quite a lot of flexibility and power in that as well. So, let’s look at how it works now and we’ll turn our attention to those two other points a little bit later on.

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So, let’s start by going to the Project Tab and in the Reports Group clicking on Reports. You see what’s probably to you a very familiar little dialog here showing the available types of Report. I’m going to look at a Cost Report, so select that. Again, very familiar list should be anyway. Of course, it’s possible to Edit these Reports, to Customize these Reports. I obviously don’t know whether you’ve used Report Customization before, but later on in the course I’m going to look at that in a reasonable amount of detail. For the moment, let’s look at one of the very specific Reports here; let’s look at the Cash Flow Report. So click on Select and what happens is the Report appears in Backstage View ready to be printed. Now I can of course Print this Report out now. I’m going to look at that in just a moment, but the Preview facility is really in this right hand panel here. Now there’s a set of buttons down at the bottom that you may or may not be familiar with, currently selected the Multi-page View which shows all three pages of this Cash Flow Report. I can show one page at a time by clicking on that button and then if I actually hover over that page I can see I’ve got a Zoom with a plus in it, I can Zoom in and then I can use the Sliders to move around the Report, to perhaps look at particular information that I want to see. This button, the third one from the right says Actual Size, so if I click on that it’ll show me the Report at the Actual Size, which it’s currently at and then, again, I can use the Scroll Bars to take me around the Report. I can go back to Multiple Page, choose a different page, Magnify that, put it to Actual Size and so on, and then I’ve got some arrows at the bottom of the page that I can use to move around within the Report. So that’s basically the Preview facility. I’m not a great fan of this Preview facility because you have to move around quite a lot or re-arrange the organization of the screen a lot to see the Report in Preview mode, but of course there are some other options available. And one of those options is to Print to One Note. Now I have here a choice of Printing Destinations; I can send it to Fax, to a Printer, I can send it to Microsoft .xps document writer, or I can send it to One Note, which is what I’m going to do in this case. If I merely say I want to Print the entire project, in this case it’s that Report, click on Print having selected One Note. It goes into One Note. It gives me Choose the Location for the Report. I’m going to put it here, click on OK, and there is my Report. Now, of course, with this arrangement I can pretty much make the page any size that I like. I can see much more of the Report and I can see all of it in View merely by changing the View, the Zoom, etc in One Note. © Copyright 2008-2012 Simon Sez IT, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

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So here, for example, just in case you’re not familiar with One Note, if I go to the View Menu, click on Zoom Out, I can get the whole of that page in view and then I can step through the three pages of this Report. And, of cours,e having had a look at it if I subsequently want to Print it out to a Printer, that’s no problem. Of course part of the reason for putting it in One Note, maybe that I want to File it away for future reference. Now let’s look at one of the other Reports. Let’s look at the Earned Value Report. Now previewed in the same way as the previous one, we have the same issues with actually seeing the detail. We can go into Single Page View. We can, of course, Magnify and Scroll our way around the Report and Print. But there is an alternative and I’m going to look at the alternative in just a moment. But just before I do, if I go back to the Printer again, we did a send to One Note 2010 just now. I went through the choices that I’ve got, Fax, Printer, Microsoft .xps, which is another good option if you use the .xps Standard Format. You notice that on the installation here I don’t have Print to .pdf. If you actually have Adobe Acrobat installed, not just the Reader, but Adobe Acrobat, then you would normally have Print to .pdf available here, which is another possibility. If I want to save information about a project to .pdf format I do Save As .pdf, but if you have Adobe Acrobat installed you can Print any Report or View to .pdf using the approach that we’ve seen here. Anyway, let’s go back now to this alternative way of looking at the Earned Value information on my project. So we’ve seen how to Print the Earned Value Report. One of the most important Cost related Reports, let’s now look at a different way by Printing an Earned Value View. I’ve got the normal Gantt Chart in place here. I’m going to do what I did a couple of units ago. I’m going to change the Table. I’m going to put the Earned Value Cost Indicators in. I’m going to just roll back so that I can see the Earned Value that I want. I’m going to just adjust these columns a little bit so that I get a little bit more in View than I had before. That’s fine. And now what I’m going to do is to Print this View. Now if I go into Backstage View, go to Print, you won’t be surprised to see there’s my View of the first page. There’s actually three pages, it says one of three at the bottom. And I can see all the options that I had before, where I’m going to Print it to and so on. But in fact I can also do Customization on this View from Backstage View here. So let’s see how we do that.

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Now if I click on Page Set-up here you’ll see a dialog that’s probably very familiar to you, whichever version of Microsoft Project you’ve used before. It has a number of Tabs – Page, Margins, Header, Footer, Legend, and View. So, for instance, on the Page Tab we can change between Portrait and Landscape. We can adjust the Scaling to try to fit more onto the page. So, for instance, I could adjust the Scaling to 80%, click OK. It does actually Preview any changes that I made. So if I wanted to balance this out, perhaps in the View, I could hide a few columns. I could perhaps see a little bit more of the Gantt itself by changing the Time Scale on the Gantt. And as you can see this basically gives you all of the facilities that you had in the Page Set-up for Printing Views in earlier versions of Microsoft Project. So again if we go back into the Set-up Dialogue again and look at say Header, there’s currently no Center Header. I can choose from the available Fields down here in the usual way. So I could, for instance, put in here the Project Title, click on Add. I can see that it’s appeared in the center section of the Header. If I click on Footer, I can see that currently the Page Number is in the center of the Footer. I could Remove that, Select it, press Delete. On the left I could put say the Page Number, Add that, type the word “of” and then add say the total page count. Click Add again and then on the right I could have another Field such as the System Date. Add that, click on OK, and my Report is now Formatted with the Project Title up there, and then if I Scroll down here over to the left I can see it says one of three and over on the right I’ve got the Date Printed. So in this unit, so far we’ve seen how to Preview and Print Reports, the various options for Output including a physical Printer, Printing to One Note, Printing to .pdf if you have Adobe Acrobat installed, and we’ve looked at Printing Views, which sometimes offers some additional and more flexible options. There’s just one other thing to look at particularly in relation to Costs Information. Let me go back into those Reports again, select Cost again, and just a very quick word about some of the options you have. Let’s take another one of the Reports. Let’s take the Cash Flow Report and this time instead of selecting it to Print let’s click on Edit. There is a cross-Tab Report Dialogue here which enables us to very specifically choose how we want the Cash Flow Report in this case to appear. So we’ve got a name of Cash Flow, we can actually change that and Customize the Report as we’ll see later on. But we can choose not only what the columns represent, the Default we’ve got here is each column is a week, but I could have, for © Copyright 2008-2012 Simon Sez IT, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

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instance, a month as my column size. I can choose what’s shown in the rows. Are they Tasks or Resources? So I could do a Cash Flow Report for Resources. I can choose basically the Table that’s included and then I can Apply Filters, and I can actually go into Text and change the Font, Textile, and so on that’s used. So virtually all of these Reports have some kind of Customization Dialog like that. You may well have used these before, but certainly experiment with them because you can very often tailor a Report without actually creating a Custom one on a long-term basis for a sort of one off tailoring job this is usually a very useful facility. And then with other Reports, let’s say something like the Earned Value Report, if I go into Edit there I have a different number of options. The dialog is titled Task Report. I can choose the Period. Is it the entire project? Or do I want to select by years? And then I can again choose the Table, Apply Filters, whether or not to Apply Gray Bands and so on. And then again I’ve got an option to go into Textiles to actually change the style of the text in the Report. So I think you can see from this that even though you may well have used Cost Reports at a basic form before, in Project 2010 there’s a lot of Customization and Editing options there, as well as the options you can set up when you come to View or Print the Report. So that’s it for now, specifically on Costs. In the next section, we’re going to start looking at multiple projects sharing Resources. So, I’ll see you then.

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Chapter 5 – Consolidation of Projects Video: Dividing Project into Parts Toby: Hello and welcome to this first unit on the Consolidation of Projects. In this and the next few units we’re going to look at how we can work on projects in many parts. Now there can be a number of reasons for doing this and let’s take a look at those reasons first. Now the first reason we may have for working on a project in parts is when we’re working on a particularly large project, let’s suppose you start planning a project, it’s got 20, 30, then 50, then 100 Tasks and the whole thing starts to escalate both in terms of the number of Tasks, the complexity of the relationships, and very often the fact that you need several people to work on planning and monitoring progress at the same time. When this starts to happen it can help if you can split the project into parts. So you can take your .mpp file in Microsoft Project and divide it up in a way that reduces the problem with dealing with such a large project. Now in a few minutes time I’m going to take, in fact one of our smaller projects that we used earlier on, and show you how you can set about dividing a project up into parts. Now the other main driver for being able to handle multiple projects is virtually the opposite of that one and that is a situation where we already have separate projects and we need to combine them in some way. Now this very often because of Resource Usage. We’ve been working on perhaps three or four different project plans, maybe those project plans use some or all of the same Resources and we’ve got to a point that we’re worried that we’re over-using or under-using the Resources. Now we can set up a Consolidation of those projects into one to make sure that the Resources are used correctly and adequately and that they’re not over-used or under-used. We can also, by Consolidating those project plans, we can look at Dependencies and so on and we can use some of the Prioritization and other features of Microsoft Project 2010 to make the best use of our Resources and to get the best result for the Schedules on all of our projects. Now if you have access to Microsoft Project Server, then many of the issues that we’re going to be dealing with in this section and the next few sections are really covered by the use of Resource Management facilities within Microsoft Project Server. There’s quite a lot of overlap in approach with what we’re going to do here, so it’s still very useful to know the tools and

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techniques that we’re going to cover, but if you can bolt all this into Microsoft Project Server, you get the best combination and usually the best result from this Consolidation of projects. But as I said to you right at the beginning of this course, we’re not really looking into Project Server itself on this course, so I’m going to set that to one side. I may mention it just from time to time to point out specific features that Project Server would help you with. I am going to assume that you’ve got some basic knowledge of sub-projects, splitting projects up, putting projects together, and I’m going to concentrate perhaps on some of the more advanced, unusual, specialized techniques in this section. So I’m going to demonstrate some of the tools, techniques, and terminology associated with Project Consolidation and in particular splitting projects up to begin with using this straight forward website development project. Now one of the sections of the project was labeled Testing. I’m going to make that into a separate project. So first of all I’m going to Copy that section, Copy those five lines, click on File, New, Backstage View New. I can choose a Template if I want to; I’m just going to use a Blank Project Template. Click on Create and then I’m going to the Project Tab, look on Project Information. I may need to set the Start Date here if I expect this Testing to start a much later date. I’ll leave it set at the Default of today’s date and Scheduling from Project Start Date, so there’s nothing unusual to set up there. So all I now need to do is to do a Paste and my Tasks appear in this new empty project. Now I’m going to Save that project and I’m going to put it in a Folder I’ve already set up on the Desktop here, which I’ve called “Website Development Project,” that’s the one I’m going to use. And I’m going to call that “Testing Project.” Click on Save. The project will now be Saved. I can close that and now I’m going to go through and do exactly the same job on two or three of the other sections of this project. So what I’ve done on this occasion is I’ve actually made three separate small projects, one for Analysis and Design, one for Development and one for Testing. And I’ve actually deleted all of their Tasks from my original project. Now as we’ll see in a moment, that wasn’t necessarily a good thing to do in the status of this project, but I’ll talk about that in just a moment. Let’s see now how we actually include them in the overall project for building the website. To do that position the cursor on a line and then on Project Tab click on Insert Group, Sub-Project. There are my three smaller projects and down here we have a very important check box, Link to © Copyright 2008-2012 Simon Sez IT, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

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Project. And what this check box says is when you Insert this Sub-Project into the overall project, maintain a link between the two. And the reason this is important is that if I make a change either in the combined project or the individual project, it will reflect in the other. If I un-check this box and Insert the project then there is no linkage between them and if I made a change in the combined project it would not reflect back on the original smaller project that now has a life of its own here. Now I’m going to maintain the Link in this case, so I’m going to check that box and I’m going to choose first of all the Analysis project and the Analysis project now appears within my overall project. Now let’s deal with a little bit of terminology. The overall project is generally referred to as a Consolidated Project. And the process that we’re doing here is called Consolidation. Each of the individual projects within the Consolidated Project are generally referred to as either SubProjects, which is really what they are, or some people use the term Inserted Projects. And I’ll use the two pretty much interchangeably from now on. So I can tell that this an Inserted project by the little icon that appears here, the Project icon. If I hover it, it tells me this Inserted project is embedded from, gives me information about the actual location of the project on my hard drive, and if I click on the plus sign here, of course, I can see the Tasks and the overall structure within the Sub-Project. Now I’ve lost the Linkage to the Task that were due to happen before it and after it. That’s because of the way that I actually created that Sub-Project on this occasion. I’m going to look at Links and Dependencies in a couple of units time, so don’t worry about that at the moment. And similarly if I now go in now, go back to Tasks, I’m going to Insert a blank row in there. In fact I think we’ll have a couple of blank rows and then on this one I’ll now repeat the process and Insert another Sub-Project. This one is going to be the Development Sub-Project and then obviously I can repeat that for the other one. Now one of the things that’s happened here is that the Development Project has actually been Inserted at a different level to the Analysis Project and again I’m going to talk about this is a subsequent unit, but for the moment we’ve now got one Consolidated Project with two SubProjects in it. Let’s just put the last one in, that’s the Testing Project, and there we are. So I’ve now got three Sub-Projects which are actually Inserted Projects within my overall Consolidated Project.

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So there we are. That’s pretty much a straight forward as that. I can expand these individual projects. I’m not going to worry too much about the indentation at the moment. And I can, of course, create all of the dependencies that I had before between these and in fact when I then Save this Consolidated Project and it Saves the individual Sub-Projects, Dependencies that I create between these will be Saved. They’ll look slightly different, as we’re going to see a little bit later on, but they will still be Saved. So, for instance, if I were to say Development Sign-Off is a pre-requisite for Testing to start and then in the usual way click up here and put a Task Dependency between them. See the Dependency appear there. As we’ll see later, that will actually look a little different within the Consolidated Project and even if I look at the Link itself, double click in it and open it up, you’ll see that the names of the individual projects are shown within the Task Dependency Dialog that you should be familiar with. Now within all of that I’ve not talked at all about Resources so far and that actually is one of the most important aspects to get right when we’re talking about Consolidating projects. As I mentioned right at the beginning, one of the reasons for combining multiple projects into a Consolidated Project is to look at Resourcing and potential over-use or under-use of Resources. I’m going to look at that starting in the next section. So, for now you know how to split, you know how to combine. In the next unit, we’re really going to concentrate on combining a few much more substantial projects into one and we’re going to start looking at the Resourcing issues. So, I’ll see you then.

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Video: Combining Projects Toby: Hello and welcome to the second unit on Consolidation in Microsoft Project 2010 Advanced. In this unit we’re going to look at combining a few projects together into one Consolidated or master project. And we’re going to use the house building project that we looked at earlier on, Greendale Plot 3. What we’re going to do here is to incorporate three other house builds into one overall Consolidated Project. So, let’s begin. Now once you start working with a Consolidated Project, it’s very important to be able to identify which of the Sub-Projects you’re looking at or working on at any time. So there are a couple of things to help you here. The first is, if I go into the Format Tab here, if I show the Project Summary Task by checking there, the Project Summary Task for Greendale Plot 3 says exactly that and it’s useful to be able to set this up and make sure it says something meaningful, whichever of your projects you’re working on. Let me now go into Backstage View, click on Info and Project Information, Advanced Properties, and that’s the clue to setting up what appears in Project Summary Tasks and also what will appear in the Consolidated Project. So, in this particular case, I’m going to keep all of my project files together. So I’m going to do a Save As here and make a Copy of Greendale Plot 3. I’ve got a new Folder on my Desktop, Building Projects. I’m going to Save that in there and then the next thing I’m going to do is I’m going to Save a direct Copy as Greendale Plot 4 to make my second project. So same as procedure, goes into there, change that to Greendale Plot 4. Now of course when I Save it as Greendale Plot 4, I’m now working on Greendale Plot 4. If I go back into Backstage View, check my Project Information, and of course the title has changed but the subject hasn’t. So if I want to keep track of the subject as well, let’s change that to 04 and what I’ve now got is two projects which are almost identical apart from the names and the subjects and they’re the first two I’m going to use in my Consolidated Project. Now let me click on one of the buttons down here to look at the Resources on one of these projects. So this is the Resource Sheet for Greendale Plot 04. Bear in mind that it’s identical to the Resource Sheet for Greendale Plot 03 and these two .mpp files have their own Resources and as far as Project 2010s concerned, there is no relationship between these Resources at all. The item Reference Voucher here is a completely different Resource to the Reference Voucher in © Copyright 2008-2012 Simon Sez IT, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

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Greendale Plot 03.

Now later on we’re going to actually share Resources within this

Consolidated Project. At the moment I’m just keeping them as separate ones. So, each of these projects has its own Resource Sheet, although of course at the moment the contents of the Resource Sheets are the same. So I’ve finished with Greendale Plot 4 for the moment, so let me just Close that for now. I’m going to create a new project so it’s Control-N and the new project is going to be my Consolidated Project which will actually incorporate all of the houses being built on a new estate called Springfield. So let’s Save this new empty project in the same Folder. I’m going to call it “Springfield.” There we are. And then although basically it’s going to be a Consolidated Project including the other individual house builds that we’ve been talking about, I want to just put a Task in here for the moment to demonstrate something. So I’m just going to put in here Springfield. I’ll show you what that’s for in a moment and I’m just also going to set up the Project Information. So I’ll be back in a moment. Now in this unit as well as looking at the general approach to Consolidating multiple projects, we’re going to look at some more detail of how and where projects get Inserted and how we can arrange a Consolidated Project. Now if I select a Task, which I’ve done here, I’ve selected the Springfield Task. If I now Insert a project, so from the Project Tab, Insert Sub-Project, choose Sub-Project from those available. I’m going to start with Greendale Plot 3. Insert it, I’m keeping Link to Project selected. The Inserted Project will appear above the Task that I had selected and that’s the basic rule when you’re Inserting a project in Project 2010. Now as we saw before, when we Insert a project we have a little icon in here, in the Information column telling us that it is a Sub-Project and it actually, if we hover over there, the screen tip tells us what the actual location and File name is. If I now want to do Insert Greendale Plot 04, straight forward enough, go back to selecting that one, do another Insert Sub-Project, this time choose Greendale Plot 4, and there we are. The two appear exactly as you would expect them to. The other thing to note about the two insertions we’ve just done is that they’re both inserted at the top level. They’re both treated as top level Tasks within the Consolidated Project. What I’m going to do now is to introduce a further complicating factor and that is that rather than just have whole line of building projects here, I’m going to arrange the buildings projects into phases.

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And the phases are going to correspond to two particular plots or areas within the estate. So one area is called Greendale and another area is called Blackthorn. So before I do this, I’m going to delete this Task which we don’t need any longer and I’m going to Create a Heading here basically, which is just Greendale. I’m going to do it in all capitals. That’s the heading for my overall Greendale building area, which is going to have a number of plots in it. And then in order to make each of these Sub-Projects part of the overall Greendale phase, what I do is to select each one or I can select more than one, but for the moment let’s just select one, and then Indent it. So if I Indent that, it becomes, even though it’s still a Sub-Project, basically part of this Greendale Summary Task which is an actual phase in the building program. Now, clearly what I’m going to do next is to do exactly the same thing to Greendale Plot 04, but before I do I want to just demonstrate one other important point. Now what I’m going to do is to Insert Greendale Plot 05, but I’m going to Insert it in the wrong place quite deliberately. I’m going to put it above Greendale Plot 03. Now in order to put it above there, as you’ll know from what we saw just now, I select this Task first and Greendale Plot 05 will appear above it. But also it will inherit the Indentation level of this Task. So it will be indented to the same level as Greendale Plot 03. So let’s just see that in action. Project, Insert Sub-Project, Greendale Plot 05, and as you can see it’s appeared above the selected one and with the same Indentation level as the selected one. Now clearly to make Greendale Plot 04 the same level is straightforward enough. The usual way, Task, now these are not in numerical order, but as we can see they’re all at the same Indentation level and they’re all part of this phase that we’ve called Greendale. Now it’s quite easy then to move things into order, if indeed we want them in order. So if I wanted to now move Greendale Plot 05 further down to make it numeric sequence, I can quite simply Cut. When you Cut a Sub-Project, you always get this message from the Planning Wizard. It warns you that Greendale Plot 05 is a Summary Task, Deleting it will Delete all its Sub-Tasks as well. Of course that means within the Consolidated Project we haven’t actually lost anything in the individual Greendale Plot 5 itself. So if you have any doubts here you can Cancel. We’re going to Continue. The selected item has some Actual Values, of course potentially as you’re cutting it you may be losing those Actual Values. We’re only actually going to put them somewhere else so we can carry-on with that and then as with Inserting a Sub© Copyright 2008-2012 Simon Sez IT, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

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Project, if you’re Cutting and in this case Pasting, it will appear above the selected row. So I’m going to choose this empty row immediately after four and then use the keyboard shortcut of Control-V to Paste Greendale Plot 05 into place and now I’ve got my three Greendale SubProjects within the overall phase. Now as I mentioned just now I’m not at all worried at the moment about the Resources for these. I’m not even going to look at Linkage between the Tasks and so on. We’re going to look at those in subsequent units. But that’s the basics of putting this together. Now, of course, it will be pretty straight forward to set up the other phase of the building program. So I could set that up as Blackthorn, which of course inherits the Indentation level of what’s above it as it appears to be a Standard Task and then I could do Insert Sub-Project below that, get Blackthorn Plot 1, Continue with that, and then I could of course move that up one level and so on. So I could build up the structure of my building program like that. Now that would be fine. I’m now going to demonstrate one or two very special features that you may not be aware of in relation to this. Now the first additional facility that you may not be aware of is this one. Let’s suppose I’ve got my five building projects all open. If I select the View Tab and then look here at Switch Windows, click there. I get a list of my five projects in the corner, Blackthorn 1 and 2, Greendale 3, 4, and 5. I could actually ask Project to Create a Consolidated Project for me. If I click on New Window here, it comes up with a Dialog with a list of the projects that are currently open and I can select as many of those as I like. Hold the Control key down for individual ones or select the first and then Shift key and the last. So including all of them, I could say make these five projects into a new project. Initial View Gantt with Timeline, click on OK, and what Project does is to make a new Consolidated Project. This one’s named Project 7. I could then do a Save As to give it a name of my own. In fact, in this case, it actually puts the Sub-Projects in the sequence they were in the Dialog window and it opens the new project or creates the new project with all of the individual projects expanded. So you can collapse it down again, you can see them, and of course if you wanted to, you could put the structure in for the phases now just by putting blank Tasks in and doing some Indentation and so on. So I’m now back at my Springfield Consolidated Project and I just want to look at one other thing before we move onto Links and Dependencies and that is I want to look at the information © Copyright 2008-2012 Simon Sez IT, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

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that’s available about each of these individual projects, so I’m going to choose Greendale Plot 03, I can right click, click on Information. In particular, on the Advanced Tabs, there are a couple of important points. One of them is that the Link to Project box is checked here. That means, as I explained earlier, that any changes you make within the individual project will be updated in the Consolidated one and vice versa. There may be occasions when you don’t want to Link to Project. Some people use Consolidated Project purely for Reporting purposes and therefore want to take a snapshot in time, perhaps at the end of the month, something like that. They make the Consolidated Project, they run the Reports, and then they just basically throw away or archive the Consolidated Project. Any changes they make are not intended to be fed back to the Live individual projects. So if you don’t need the Link to Project, this is where you un-check it. The other thing to bear in mind is this. There is actually here a specific location for the Project File, the individual Project File, in this case within this Folder on my Desktop. If I wanted to move the individual File somewhere else, so for instance, let’s suppose that I decided to put all the Blackthorn plans in one Folder and all the Greendale plans in another Folder, I could move them and then I can update their locations here. So I could actually say right from now on you’re going to find the Greendale project files in this Folder and the Blackthorns in the other Folder. So you can actually use the Browse facility here to relocate any one of the individual .mpp files, which again can be very useful, particularly when you’re developing a plan and working on something long-term; where the requirements for individual storage of Project Files may change. So there we are. We’ve seen how to build a Consolidated Project from a number of individual project files both manually and using the automated facility we have via the View Tab. In the next section, we’re going to start looking at Links and Dependencies between projects and specifically between Tasks within Sub-Projects. So, I’ll see you then.

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Video: Links & Dependencies between Projects Toby: Hello and welcome to this third unit on Consolidation of Projects in Microsoft Project 2010 Advanced. In this unit, we’re still not going to really worry too much about Resources; we’re concentrating in this unit on Links and Dependencies. And these Links and Dependencies can be between Tasks within different Sub-Projects and between Tasks in Sub-Projects and Tasks in the main project itself. Now I’m going to use the website development project again and I’ve actually constructed this Consolidated Project here, which has got a mixture of Tasks in the Consolidated Project itself, such as the ones at the top here and three separate Sub-Projects, which can be identified in the usual way. So, let’s get started. Now as we go through this unit I’m going to also point out a couple of ways of establishing and changing Links that you may not be aware of. So first of all let me just talk about what we’ve got in the Consolidated Project. We have the Tendering Process and Contract stage at the top here, then we have a Requirements stage which has two individual Tasks, Requirements Definition where we actually say what we need on this website and then a final Sign-Off of the Requirements. Now the next stage, the Analysis where the business analyst and web analyst get to work to actually to start to design this new website is set up as a separate Sub-Project. As you should know by now, if I hover over the Icon in the column here I get the Details of that SubProject File and if I expand the Sub-Project I can see that it has a Task of Analysis and Design, which is a Summary Task, and two Tasks within that – Analysis and Design and Design SignOff. Now the first thing I’m going to do is to establish a Link between the Requirements Definition and the Analysis and Design. Now if you don’t have a Background in software development, I’ll just briefly explain what that’s about. Basically before we can actually start to Design the system we need to know what the Requirements are and so in theory at least we need to have all the Requirements defined before we start work on the Analysis and Design. In practice we often start Analysis and Design before we’ve completed the Requirements, but for the purposes of this exercise let’s say we need to complete Requirements before we start Analysis and Design. So one way of establishing the Link between Requirements and Analysis and Design is to actually drag the relevant first Task onto the relevant subsequent Task, so that’s the Predecessor

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is dragged onto the Successor. Now in the case of Requirements, the Requirements Definition is this Task and then the Sign-Off is here. So we actually want the Sign-Off to be the thing that is the Predecessor of starting work on Analysis and Design. So what I’m going to do is I’m going to drag the milestone for Requirements Sign-Off onto this Task, Analysis and Design. You see the Link, the chain link there in place, drop it over the relevant Task, release it, and the Link is in place. Now again, as you should know, you can either see the Link by hovering over the Task, which is what I’ve done just now or you can actually double click on the Link itself to bring up the Task Dependency Dialog and that tells you all of the key points about this particular Dependency. It’s a finish-to-start relationship with a lag of zero days. So as I said before, basically what we’re saying is the Requirements must be signed-off before we start work on the Analysis and Design. So what I just did was to Create a Link between an individual Task in the Consolidated Project, Requirement Sign-Off, this milestone Task and an individual Task in one of the Sub-Projects, Analysis and Design is a Task within the Analysis Sub-Project. I can, of course, Create Links between the Sub-Projects or Tasks within the Sub-Projects. This time I’m going to Create a Link between two Summary Tasks. The Summary Task in Analysis called Analysis and Design and the Summary Task in Development called Development. So select the first one, hold the Control key down, I’m not using drag this time, I’m going to use the select the two, and then on the Task Tab just click on the Link command and those two Tasks are Linked together. I want to be able to see the whole project in View. So I go to the View Menu, onto Time Scale, Zoom, and then entire project, click on OK, and now I can see what the effect of Linking those two Summary Tasks together is. Now one of the things you may be familiar with from your own use of Microsoft Project is the ability to create these Links not by the dragging method I’ve just shown you or by selecting the two and using the Link command, but actually specifying Predecessors in Task information. So, for instance, if I go to Requirement Sign-Off here and open up the Task Information, go to the Predecessor tag, you can see the Predecessor is Requirements Definition which is Task five. Now that’s a bit of a problem when you’re dealing with Consolidated Projects because look at those Task IDs. You’ve got a number of Task twos. You’ve got a number of Task fours and so on. So how does that work? Well let’s take one of the Tasks where I’ve already created a Link. © Copyright 2008-2012 Simon Sez IT, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

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Let’s take that one, Development. Let’s open up the Task Information and see what it actually says about that Predecessor link. If I click on Predecessors and look in the ID Field, the ID Field is not just a number; it’s actually a project name, complete project name. You can see it there, Analysis Project.mpp followed by the ID. So the Predecessor definition has to include the name of the relevant project, including the full File location and so on. So that’s a thing to be careful of. It’s not a straightforward case of just typing an ID as it is when you’re dealing with an individual project. Now if you want to do things that way you can actually choose one of the Tables, such as the Entry Table, find the Predecessors Column, and then if you click in here and if you have the Entry Bar enabled, you can actually Edit the full ID of the Predecessor in here. It’s not a method I use very often because I find that Linking using one of the two methods I showed you just now works a lot more reliably, but it is an option. Now clearly I could go through and Link the Testing and the Live Implementation and go Live. I’m going to do that in a little while, but what I’d like to do now is to look at how this information appears in the individual Sub-Projects. Now note that with the Analysis Project I’ve got a Predecessor in the Consolidated Project and a Successor in a different individual project. So what I’m going to do is I’m going to Close all this down now and just have a look at the Analysis Project on its own. So here I am with the individual Analysis and Design Sub-Project. It seems to have grown from three Tasks to five, but of course it hasn’t really. The three Tasks, which are actually part of the Sub-Project are Formatted in the usual way. So you have the Analysis and Design Summary Task and then the two individual Tasks, Analysis and Design and Design Sign-Off. But then there are two grayed out Tasks; one corresponding to Development and one corresponding to Requirements.

And these are the two other parts of the website development overall

Consolidated Project that this Sub-Project has Links to. So taking Development first, if I hover over the gray bar on the right, I see a screen tip that comes up to say External Tasks. It tells us the Task is Development. It gives us the name of the Sub-Project for Development and the Task ID number too, Start Date, Finish Date, Duration, and so on. Similarly if I go to this entry for Requirements and hover over the milestone it gives me the external milestone information as well. © Copyright 2008-2012 Simon Sez IT, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

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So I’ve now got the Analysis Project open and I’ve also got open the Consolidated Project. I can actually change a Link in either. And you may recall from much earlier on that we had an issue with getting this website development completed on time. And what we had to do was to change the principle, the relationship between Analysis and Development, in fact between Requirements and Analysis as well, whereby we said we can’t wait for one to finish before we start the other. We’re going to actually start the Development sometime, say four weeks after the Analysis starts so we can get some of the Analysis work done and then start on the Development straight away. So I’m going to change the relationship between Analysis and Design and Development. I’m actually going to switch back to the individual Sub-Project and I’m going to change the Link here. So let me just open that up. It says Analysis and Design From to Development, Finish-toStart zero days. I’m going to change it to Start-to-Start and I’m going to make the lag 20 days. So basically what I’m saying is I’m going to start the Analysis and Design and then 20 days later I’m going to start the Development work. I’m going to assume that I’ve got enough of the Analysis and Design work done and that I’m confident enough in the work that I’ve done that I can start the Development four weeks later. So click on OK. You can see the impact here. You can see that main Gantt for Analysis and Design and then the gray bars for the externals and if I switch back to the Consolidated, you can see the corresponding change has been made in the Consolidated Project. Now, of course, with a project like this one, which even as a Consolidated Project is not very big, it’s pretty easy to see what’s going on all of the time. When you have a very large Consolidated Project, which you often will have, there are great advantages in being able to hide some of the Sub-Projects using the Outline buttons on the left. So if I wanted to create a new relationship between Development and Testing I could create the Link, having done that I can double click on the Link, again change it from being Finish-to-Start, the Default, to Start-to-Start, put in a 15 day lag and then I’ll just put in the Link between Testing and Live Implementation and I’ll have a much more complete representation of the Dependencies within this project. So we’ve seen how to set up Dependencies between Consolidated Project Tasks and Tasks in Sub-Projects. We can even set them up between Tasks in different Sub-Projects and so on. And we’ve seen how to change those Dependencies. Now let’s look at one last thing which is the Critical Path for this project. Now at the moment it’s not shown, so let’s go into the Format Tab © Copyright 2008-2012 Simon Sez IT, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

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as usual, click on Critical Tasks, and you probably get a surprise at this point because the Critical Task for this project appear to be just the few at the bottom, which we know isn’t right. And one of the complications that arise when you’re dealing with Sub-Projects and Consolidation is that the way that Project treats the Tasks within the individual Sub-Projects is that it treats them as though they are just part of their own Sub-Project. So if we take this Analysis Sub-Project as far as it’s concerned there’s no problem within the Sub-Project. This Task is not Critical because there’s no constraint that says it has to be finished by a particular date. The constraint is up here in the Consolidated Project. Now in order to see the Critical Path including Critical Tasks in Sub-Projects, we need to go into Backstage View, into Options, click on the Schedule Tab, right down near the bottom, and there’s an option down here under Calculation Options which says, Inserted Projects are Calculated like Summary Tasks. We don’t want that, we want them not to be treated like that. We want them to be treated as though each of the Tasks within them are part of the overall project and each of them is individually significant. Click on OK and now we see the Critical Tasks within the Sub-Projects. So there we are. You should now be able to see how to set up and change all of those Links and Dependencies, how to create the Consolidated Project from individual projects, and indeed how to separate a project into individual projects. There’s one last area to look at and that’s what we’re going to cover in the next section. And that’s the sharing of Resources and particular issues to do with the sharing of Resources, such as Leveling. So I look forward to seeing you then.

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Video: Sharing Resources & Issues with Leveling Toby: Hello and welcome to this fourth and final section on Consolidated Projects within Microsoft Project 2010 Advanced. In the last few sections, we’ve looked at different ways of creating a Consolidated or master project. We’ve looked at how to split a project up into SubProjects, how to then combine those again, and also how to set up Links and Dependencies between individual Sub-Projects and between a Consolidated Project and any of the Sub-Projects within it. In this section, we’re going to look at Resourcing. I’ll assume that you’ve used Resources with a Consolidated or master project before, but I will cover one or two of the basics as well. And in particular in this section, we’re going to look at issues of Prioritization of projects and what to do when we get conflicts of Resources in a Resource Sharing situation. So, it’s time to get started. Now in this section we’re going to return to our building project again and we’re going to look at, again, building those same five houses that we had before, but when we had the five Project Files before, which were all copied from the same original Project File, for each of them the Resources were different. So even if we had the same person’s name on the Resource Sheet, it would actually be treated by Project as a different person. If we want to use the same Resources for five projects, whether they’re kept as five separate projects or whether they’re Consolidated, we need to set up a Resource Pool. So, in order to set up the Resource Pool, I’ve done it in the conventional way for Project 2010. First of all, I’ve made a Copy of one of the five files which has got all of the Resources in it. Here it is; I’ve called that “Springfield Resource Pool.” It’s actually got a whole set of Tasks here as well, corresponding exactly to the build Tasks in each of the five individual ones, but if I look on the Resource Sheet I see it’s got exactly the same Resource Sheet as those five other individual building projects. If I, on the Type, Filter just for Work, which is basically the Labor Resources, I can see the Generic Resources like Labor, Carpentry, Frame, Labor Apprentice, and then the specific Name Resources – Dan Templeton, Kim Stevens, Darryl Palowski, and so on. Now if I use these in a Resource Pool and each of the individual house builds uses the same Resource Pool, there will only be Dan Templeton who’s working on all five of the projects. And depending on the Max Percentages here, I may only have one Labor Carpentry Lock-up person available to all five projects. And that’s clearly going to affect the Time Scales and Schedules for building all five houses. © Copyright 2008-2012 Simon Sez IT, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

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Now the next step in this process is one which I always recommend, although strictly speaking it’s not necessary. If I go back to the Gantt Chart View for Springfield Resource Pool, what I’m going to do is to Delete all of these Tasks because the Resource Pool should really only be treated as a Resource Pool. It would not normally have its own Tasks as well. Now, in fact, you can quite successfully work with some Tasks in the Resource Pool as well, but I think it’s a lot cleaner to do things this way. So I’m going to Select that lot, Delete affectively all of the work on the project, and now this purely is a Resource Pool. If I go back to the Resource Sheet View, all of my Resources are there of course. There’s no Usage for any of them, but I have no Tasks in this Project at all. Now let me re-Open one of my individual building projects. Let’s Open Greendale 03. Now this is the one that’s partly complete and what I’m now going to do is to get it to use the Resources that are in the Pool. Now if I click on the Resource Tab and click on Resource Pool and then click on Share Resources. At the moment, this project uses its own Resources; that’s what the top Radio button there says, Use Own Resources. I’m going to get it to use Resources from elsewhere. And I can get it to use Resources is anything in this dropdown list. Now this drop down list has only got one thing in it. It’s got in it the other project that’s open, which is Springfield Resource Pool. In order to get a project to use a Resource Pool, you need the Resource Pool Open, and then you can Select it like this. Now I’ll come back to that conflict question in a moment.

But just for the moment, I’m going to say Use Resources from

Springfield Resource Pool and click on OK. Now that means that from now on this project, Greendale Plot 03, is using the Resource Pool Resources. Now I’m going to Close both of those Files, the individual Project File and the Resource Pool now and then I’m going to Open the first one again and you can see what happens. So, let’s once again Open Greendale Plot 03 and what happens is we get this Dialog, Open Resource Pool Information. Bear in mind now that the project Greendale Plot 03 uses a Shared Resource Pool and when we Open the Project File we’re asked, “Do you want to Open the Resource Pool to see assignments across all Sharer Files?” This is important. If you’re using a Resource Pool and other projects are using it as well, maybe with other Project Managers who are updating their own Schedules, their own information; if you’re going to either rely on information in the Resource Pool or indeed change the information in the Resource Pool as a © Copyright 2008-2012 Simon Sez IT, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

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result of what you’re doing on your project, you need to have access to the Pool so that you know, for example, that a Resource is available. Or that if you’re going to use a Resource that other people know you’re using that Resource. Normally you need to be in a situation where you can Select this first option, Open Resource Pool to see assignments across all Sharer Files. However, if you’re in a position that, for example, you can’t Open the Resource Pool, maybe it’s locked, having some maintenance done on it. Maybe it’s not available for you to Open for some other reason. Maybe you’re actually working on your .mpp file separately from the Resource Pool, then you can Open without the Resource Pool. Now if you’re in the position you have to do that, clearly the Resource information you’re looking at may not be reliable and any changes you make may not be translated to others. So you’ll need to do an Update later on. For the purposes of this, we’re going to assume that the Resource Pool is open to us. So when we click on the first option, Open, we also open the Resource Pool, and any work I now do will be reflected in the Resource Pool straight away. So, now I’m going to Open Greendale Plot 04 and I’m going to do the same thing. I’m going to go into the Resource Tab, Resource Pool, Share Resources, Use Resources from. Choice as usual, just the one Resource Pool that’s there. Let me just talk briefly about this particular option here, the On Conflict with Calendar Option. If you have different Calendars in force between the Resource Pool and the individual specific project that you’re working on, you can actually specify here which Calendar takes precedence. If you want the Calendar that applies to the Resources in the Pool to take precedence you Select this option button here. If you actually want the Sharer File, the one you’re Opening to have its Calendars take precedence in the case of any kind of conflict on Calendars, you Select this option here. I’m generally going to use the Pool Calendars because my individual building projects may have slightly different Calendars, but I have Pooled Resources that all work to the same Calendar, whichever particular job they’re working on. So I’m going to stick with Pool takes precedence. So click on OK. Greendale Plot 4 opens now and that is also now using the Shared Resource Pool. So what I’m now going to do is to Open the other three individual building projects so that they’re all Sharing the Resource Pool. So I’ll see you in just a moment. So I’ve changed all five of my building projects and all five of them are now using the Resource Pool. What I want to do now is to demonstrate a very important point about the Resource Pool. © Copyright 2008-2012 Simon Sez IT, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

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So I’m going to Open it in the usual way, Springfield Resource Pool, and what I get is this Dialog that you’ll see quite a bit, Open Resource Pool. Now there are three options: This File is a Resource Pool for many projects. What do you want to do? You can, first option, Open the Resource Pool, Read Only. Allowing others to work on projects connected to the Pool. If you do this that means you’re looking at information in the Pool, you’re not able to update it, but other people can access the information and update it at the time that you’re looking at it. The second option is to Open the Resource Pool, Read/Write. So you can make changes to Resource information, like pay rates and so on. So if you needed to go in and say update a lot of prices, you could do that, although this will lock others out of updating the Pool with new information. While you’re doing that others won’t be able to update information in the Pool. And the third option, Open the Resource Pool, Read/Write and all other Sharer Files into a new master Project File; you can access this new master Project File from the View Tab, Switch Windows command. Now I’m going to do that on this occasion because I want to look at the Overallocation that will have occurred because of having five projects connected to the same Pool and effectively all of them having the same Schedule and the same Resource Allocations. So on this occasion I’m going to click OK. Okay, so from the View Menu, Switch Window to Project 3, the new one that’s been created. And if I look at the Resource Sheet, which is obviously the Resource Sheet for the Pool, I’m going to look at Work Resources. So I get rid of Material and Cost and there’s no sign of Overallocations. So Dan, for instance, who had five identical Demolition jobs at the same time on those five projects, doesn’t seem to be a problem. So let’s have a look at Dan’s Demolition jobs. Let’s go into Resource Usage. So let me just specifically find Dan’s entry here just by using the Filter and there we are. Click on OK. There he is and I just put his five Tasks. You can now see that Dan’s five Demolition Tasks have been staggered over time to remove the Over-allocation of Dan as a Resource. So there’s five Tasks. You can see the amount of work per day there and if I go back into the Gantt Chart and hide the Detail for each of the five building Sub-Projects, and I’m going to now do that over Time Scale of entire project in view. You can see that although they’re all officially starting on the same date, the Finish Dates obviously are now staggered because the work has been staggered to remove the Over-allocations on the Resources.

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Now I just need to point out one or two other things before we finish on Resource Sharing within in the Consolidation topic. First of all, you may recall that for each individual project, if I look at the Project Information, such as this one for In Search of Project Information for Greendale Plot 04, we can actually set the priority of the project and by giving a project a higher priority, its Resource Leveling will be the least. So in other words, its Tasks will be delayed the least. You can adjust say in a project like this one where we have five Sub-Projects, you could give all of the five Sub-Projects different priorities and the one you wanted to get finished first or to give priority in the case of any conflict, you would give the highest priority to. And the other thing to bear in mind in terms of Leveling, you can control from the Resource Tab the Leveling options in the Level group. So, for instance, you could change from Automatic to Manual. I had this set on Automatic. With Manual or Automatic, you can look for Overallocations on a day-by-day, week-by-week, hour-by-hour, etc. basis and then you have a number of options. So, for instance, if you have a project where you can’t delay the End-Date, you’ll say Level only within available slack. Now I’m assuming you’re reasonably familiar with most of these settings and then you can either Level for an individual Resource or Resources for whoever’s selected or you can do Level All. So that’s it on Consolidated Projects for now. We’ve looked at how to take a number of projects, Share Resources, Level those Resources so that we don’t suffer from Over-allocations, and we now have a good sequence of building work where we’re making good use of our Resources without having problems in terms of people having too much to do. So, in the next section we’re going to start to take a fairly quick look at one of the newer features of Project 2010 and we’re going to look into Visual Reporting. So I’ll see you then.

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Chapter 6 – Visual Reports Video: Creating and Modifying Reports Toby: Hello and welcome to the first of two sections on Microsoft Project 2010 Advanced Visual Reports. Visual Reports were introduced in the 2007 version and have been enhanced in the 2010 version of Microsoft Project and to some extent they replace or at least compliment the more traditional types of Reporting in Microsoft Project.

Now we looked at those more

traditional types of Report earlier on in the course and as I pointed out then, although those Reports are still available, they’re a little bit more awkward to deal with now. A little bit more awkward to Customize and things like Previewing the Reports I think are a little bit more awkward. But this is more than compensated for by the power of Visual Reporting. And what we’re going to look at in this section is how to create Visual Reports, how we can modify and present them, and how we can use the power of two very strong tools, Microsoft Excel and Microsoft Visio to give us even more extensive capabilities when it comes to Reporting. Now, first of all, let’s access Visual Reports. On the Project Tab in the Reports Group, click on Visual Reports. It brings up the Create Report Dialog and the first thing to recognize is that there are two additional tools that are involved in making Visual Reports. You could have either or both of them. For the purposes of this course I’m really going to focus on Microsoft Excel because most people, probably everybody that’s using Microsoft Project will have Microsoft Excel as well, whereas the number of people Microsoft Visio is quite small. Now depending on which of those packages you’ve got, you may want to Disable one of these options up here, uncheck the check box. I’m going to uncheck Microsoft Visio on the basis that I haven’t got Visio installed on this machine. I’m not going to use it. The principles are exactly the same in the two. You’d need to be familiar with Visio to use the Visio Reports. Basically what happens in Project is you’re invoking Visio Pivot Diagrams, which are basically a sort of hierarchical work break down structure-type of diagram and if you’re not familiar with those, then it wouldn’t really help you very much to go through them here anyway. In Excel we’re basically using Excel Pivot Tables and that’s really what I’m going to demonstrate on this course. Now to use these, for the Visio option, you need Visio Professional 2007 or later and for the Excel option you need Excel 2003 or later.

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Now Project 2010 comes with a number of standard Templates for these Visual Reports and I’m going to assume from now on that we are only looking at the Excel ones and one of the Tabs in this section of the Create Report Dialog lists all of the available Reports and that’s the set I’ve got installed here. Now apart from a list with all, they’re also categorized. Now I’ll come back to the Categorization in just a moment. So for individual lists I can click on these Tabs; Alls got everything on it. But it’s also possible to create your own Templates and indeed to Edit existing Templates to Customize the Reports. There’s also a facility to Manage the Templates and we’ll look at the issue of the Templates and the Management of them a little bit later on. There are a couple of additional features on this Dialog that are very important. One of them is that for Usage Data there is an over-riding list here where you can choose the Time Intervals for these Reports. Now it Defaults to weeks. I’m going to leave it set at weeks for the moment and then this control here lets us include Report Templates from somewhere else. So I can actually change the location of my Report Templates. I’m going to leave it as it is for the moment. Now when you actually look at the Create Report Dialog on your installation of Microsoft Project 2010, you may actually see a different list of Reports to mine. People sometimes create their own Templates. They may have got some from a third party and so on. So I’m really going to concentrate on the specifics of one or two of these, but really on the general concepts behind the available Visual Reports. Now I mentioned before you’ve got these seven Tabs. One of them shows all. These three, Task Usage, Resource Usage, and Assignment Usage are basically dealing with Time Phased Data. That is, they’re showing how some of our Project 2010 objects like our Resources or our Tasks are being used over time. Whereas the other three, Task Summary, Resource Summary, Assignment Summary are basically Summary types of Reports, showing us totals over allocated periods. So let’s start by looking at one or two of the Usage Reports. Now the project I’m using for this Report is Greendale Plot 03 and I’m sticking with the Default here of weeks. I’m going to go into Task Usage. There’s one Report there on my installation, Cash Flow Report, and this is a Bar Graph showing the Cost and Cumulative Cost amounts illustrated over time. Now having selected my project, having gone with the time period down here, and selected my Report which is Cash Flow Report, all I need to do then is to click the View button. © Copyright 2008-2012 Simon Sez IT, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

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Now you may not be particularly familiar with Microsoft Excel, so I’m going to try to explain a few of these things in a little bit more detail. But once I’ve done it on one of these Reports, virtually all of it applies to the others as well. What generally happens is that within Microsoft Excel you now have two sheets that you need to look at. One of them has the Data on it and one of them has the actual Report. Now this opens with the Chart, which is basically the Report Sheet. Here is the actual Chart itself. You can’t see all of it at the moment, I’ll return to that question in just a moment. You then have the Pivot Table Field list and the tools with which you can select what’s shown on the Report over here. Again, I’ll come back to those in a moment. The actual Pivot Table itself is on this other sheet, the Task Usage Sheet. So if I click that Worksheet Tab here, you can see the Pivot Table itself. Now the information in there is very important because not only do you have the actual data derived from my project here, but you can see that the data relates this column, the first column, which is actually Column C in the Pivot Table, has the Cost Data and the second column, if I hover over it has the Cumulative Cost Data. Now you’ve got a Year Total, a Grand Total, and then for each year that my project has run, and bear in mind it doesn’t start until 2012, it’s broken down by the two quarters where I have some Costs or Cumulative Cost Data. So let me explain a little bit about what we can see here in this Report. First of all, because we have a Report selected here and it’s actually a Pivot Chart, we have an additional set of Tabs here in Excel – Design, Layout, Format, Analyze – and if you look on the Analyze Tab one of the buttons in the Show and Hide Group is Field List. If I un-select that or deselect that, the Field List disappears. So we’ve got that out of the way, we’re going to put that back on in just a moment. And furthermore, if we have a Chart that’s actually just too big, which this one is, if we go to the View Tab and Select Zoom to Selection, you get a much clearer view of actually what’s in this Cash Flow Report. So we’re looking at the Pivot Chart in Excel and within the Pivot Chart itself we have some embedded controls that we can use for Data Selection. Now one of them is in the top left. It’s the Task Control here. This is how I Select which Tasks to include in this particular Report. So if I click on the down arrow, it actually works as a Filter. So currently all Lists selected. I can expand as usual. Let’s suppose I wanted to see a Pivot Chart showing just the Landscape Tasks. So Select Landscape, click on OK. Now I’ve now got a much simpler Cash Flow Report © Copyright 2008-2012 Simon Sez IT, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

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because of course the Landscaping Tasks are all in Q2 according to my building Schedule. So it doesn’t make a particularly exciting Report because of course Cost and Cumulative Cost are the same as it’s all in the one period. Let’s suppose I wanted to show say all of the work related to the actual site, so I might include, apart from Landscape, Prepare, and maybe we can include Final as well. Well to Select to multiple items I click here. Brings up the normal type of check boxes and then I can say Prepare, Landscape, and Final, for example. I can pretty much have any selection I like. Click on Ok and I’ve now got a Cash Flow Report showing my selected Tasks. Now the other control that’s right on these Pivot Chart is the Calendar control down here. So if I Select that, again, I have the full range of Filters available. So I have Date Filters such as tomorrow, today, yesterday, next quarter, last quarter, and so on. I have Custom Filter facility and then Value Filters, relational, less than, or equal toos and so on. And then of course the Filter Selection Tree at the bottom. If I take off Select All, say I wanted to look at the Costs for the last four weeks of the project for the Selected Tasks, remember my selection of Tasks is still in force. Click on OK and there’s the Cash Flow Information for the last four weeks of the project. So depending on the Report type and depending on the initial selections that you made when you created this Visual Report, you’re then in position that directly from the Pivot Chart you can make some selections to actually Customize the appearance and content of your Report. And of course don’t forget you’ve always got the Print facility from Microsoft Excel to Print out one of these Reports. Let’s now take a look at what we can do from the Pivot Table and in particular looking at some of the standard Excel features in terms of the use of Pivot Tables and Pivot Charts. So, here’s my Pivot Chart again. I’ve removed the selections on Tasks, so it’s all Tasks again. I’ve removed the selection on the Calendar, so it’s all time periods. Go back to the Analyze Tab, click on Field List to bring up the Field List within the Pivot Table panel on the right here. I’m currently showing Cost and Cumulative Cost. Let’s suppose now that I wanted to show actually different values in the chart. So instead of Cumulative Cost which I’m going to switch off by un-checking here, I want to show Actual Cost. So I’ve more or less actually got now is a straightforward Bar Chart, Cost versus Actual Cost. The Legend here tells me what the colors © Copyright 2008-2012 Simon Sez IT, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

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are and of course I could go back into the Chart and change the period as I did just now. I’ve, of course, with Greendale Plot 03, I’ve only got a small amount of actual information recorded, so you can see that at the moment I’ve only got Actuals for Q1 which is the time period we’re working in at the moment. And the Actuals are well below the proposed Cost for the period as well. Obviously later on this particular Report would have more meaning. But I can, of course, Disable Cost, put in Cumulative Cost instead and so on. Now from those then I can vary the Actual Values, the Actual Fields that are included in my Cash Flow Report. I can then, of course, have more than two Fields. So, for instance, if I want Cumulative Cost, Cost, and Actual Cost, I could Enable Actual Cost as well to show three, and at the bottom of the Field List I also have the Filters that we’ve seen on directly on the chart for Tasks and for Time Periods as well. So we’ve seen how to actually adapt the Cash Flow Report, the Pivot Chart itself. We’ve seen how to use the Pivot Table Field List to affect what’s shown within the Pivot Chart. If we go back to the actual Pivot Table itself, the Data, we’ll also have useful information there. So if I look at, for instance, the Column B here with the Time Data in it, Q1, Q2. If with Q1 I expand it, I can see that I have a week-by-week break down of Cumulative Cost, Cost, and Actual Cost. This is of course kept in step with my selections on the Pivot Table List on the right. I’ve now got three Fields in there instead of the original two and you can also see why the Actual Cost is so small in relation to the Cost and Cumulative Cost, the Projected Cost, because of course we’ve only got a relatively small amount of actual Data so far. So you can revert back to looking at the Data in the Pivot Table itself at any time and you can, of course, go back to the selections here, at the top of Column B; we can Select again on Task and exactly the same selection options are available. So even if you’re not familiar with Pivot Charts in Microsoft Excel, you should have seen from this how the Pivot Chart, the Pivot Table Field List on the right, and the Pivot Table Data work in harmony together to give you very flexible Reporting capabilities. And of course you have the Print facilities from Excel as well. So in the next section, we’re going to look at the other available Visual Reports from Project via Microsoft Excel and then we’re going to look at Customization of those Reports and ways that we can Save Pivot Data. So, I’ll see you then.

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Video: Other Reports, Customizing Reports & Creating New Report Templates Toby: Hello and welcome to this second unit on Visual Reporting in Microsoft Project 2010 Advanced. In the first unit we looked at the Cash Flow Report and we used a number of approaches to Customize what we can see in the Report, including using controls on the Pivot Chart itself in Microsoft Excel and using the Pivot Table Field as picker and so on. In this section, we’re now going to look at the other available Reports which use Microsoft Excel as a basis for building and presenting them using Microsoft Excel Pivot Tables. And then we’re going to look at Customization and Creating our own Templates for Visual Reports. So, let’s get started. Now what I would like to look at first is the Resource Usage Report. And before we do that I want to look at this control down here, Select Level of Usage Data to include in the Report. Now you can actually choose from any of these available drop down values here, including days. By Default Project sets that Level of Usage Data to whatever it recommends for the size of your project. Now this is usually weeks, in fact in my experience it’s almost always weeks. If you choose to go to a more detailed Level, days in this case, the amount of data that’s going to be process and the size of the Data base that it’s going to work on when it’s creating the Pivot Table and from the Pivot Table to Pivot Chart, is going to be much greater and it’s actually going to slow things down quite a bit. And in terms of performance, space, and so on, you’re better off choosing a Level of Usage Data that’s appropriate to your requirements. So, if you don’t actually need Reporting at the day Level, don’t specify days, it will just slow things down. Stick to the Level that you need. I’m going to stick with weeks and let’s now look at that Resource Usage Report. Now whichever Visual Report I’m creating, I can see a sample on the right. So I can see that the Resource Cost Summary Report is in the form of a Pie Chart and this illustrates the division of Resource Cost between the three Resource types of Cost, Material, and Work. When I click on View I get a Progress Bar at the bottom, describes the steps that Project and Excel together are going through and when it’s finished there is my Report. Now what I’m going to do in this case is I’m going to resize it as I did before and then we’re going to do a very basic bit of investigation into this Report.

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Now the point that I want to illustrate here is that depending on the type of Chart and indeed the selection of Data in the Report, you will get different controls on the Chart itself. So, for instance, here on the right we have a Legend where the colors show us whether we’re dealing with Work, Material, or Cost. Note the Cost Value is zero. And I can actually decide which of those to include. So if I drop down on Type, I can see if I wanted to exclude say Material, which wouldn’t really help very much, if I clicked on OK, now I can only see Work and Cost. As usual I can easily return that to showing all. And up here on the Weekly Calendar control in this case, I can actually expand and say decide that I only want to see Q1, for example. And that gives me the breakdown for Q1. And also as before, if I Open up the Field List, I can change there to showing, for instance, Actual Cost as well on the Chart. Now you should be able to see now the pattern of how all of this works. I am going to briefly run through the other Reports, or most of them anyway, just to explain what each of them is used for. You may be familiar with some or all of them anyway, but just to illustrate this point again here, if you take the change I just made to include Actual Cost what happens in Excel is that it not only included the Actual Cost figures for all three Resource types, but it actually has a system whereby it produces intelligently a Legend. So we’ve got a Color Scheme as before but we’ve got Work, Cost, Work Actual Cost, Material Cost, Material Actual Cost, and so on. Pivot Tables in Excel are a very powerful facility, extremely flexible. And as you can see when it comes to Reporting, the Visual Reporting that you can do from Microsoft Project using Excel Pivot Tables is very powerful and very flexible. The next Report we’re going to look at it is the Resource Work Availability Report. And this is a Bar Graph which shows the total capacity work and remaining availability for Work Resources illustrated over time. So this is still a Time Phased Report. I’ll stick with weeks. I’ll click on View. Give Excel time to actually build this particular Report and the other thing about this particular Report is we can illustrate one other important point. I’ll re-Format it as usual and then we’ll continue. So the Chart here shows Resource Work Availability, three categories Work Availability, Work, and Remaining Availability according to the Color Scheme here. Don’t forget, of course, that we can go into the Design Tab and change the Chart Style if we want to. Don’t forget we’ve also got the Layout Tab, full Excel facilities, but let’s just get back to this particular Chart as it is. © Copyright 2008-2012 Simon Sez IT, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

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The other thing that you can do here, if you look at these three gray buttons here – Work Availability, Work, Remaining Availability – if you right click on any of these, you have an opportunity to change the order of what’s in the Chart. So if I took the last one, Remaining Availability, and clicked on Move to Beginning, that now is the first item in the Bar Chart. Other than that, the other controls on here, again, you can Select Type, Filter here, Weekly Calendar, Filter here, and as I say, you’ve got the full set of Pivot Chart Tools as well. Now just one other point while we’ve got this particular Chart on view. Let’s go into the Pivot Table itself. If I actually on Q1 expand that Time Period so that I show the individual weeks in terms of Remaining Availability, Work Availability, and Work, look what happens back on the Chart. The Chart is re-drawn when I next view it and the individual weeks of Q1 are shown with their individual data and Q2 is still shown as a quarter block. So you can actually fine tune the content of this Axis, the Horizontal Axis, which is currently weeks and quarters. And in this way you could concentrate or focus on a particular part of the Time Period. So let’s just take a look at a couple of these other Time Phase Reports. The Resource Work Summary Report is again a Bar Graph, but it shows Total Resource Capacity, Work, Remaining Availability, and Actual Work, illustrated in Work Units. On the Assignment Usage Tab, we have a Baseline Cost Report. This is a Bar Graph with Baseline Cost, Planned Cost, and Actual Cost. We also have a Baseline Work Report, Baseline Cost Report, Budget Work Report, and Earned Value Over Time Report. Now the Earned Value Over Time Report is one that’s shown as a Graph. It plots Actual Cost of Work Performed, Planned Value, IEBCWS, Budgeted Cost of Work Scheduled, and Earned Value, Budgeted Cost of Work Performed. These are all terms that I explained earlier on. Let’s view that Report as the last one of the Time Phased ones we’re going to look at. Now even though it’s a Graph, you pretty much got all the same facilities you had with the Pie Chart and Bar Chart. Obviously they’re dependent on the Data Content and the Actual Values chosen over the period of time that you’re Reporting on and so on. I’ll just reFormat that as usual and we’ll take a look at one or two interesting options that you have with the Graphical types of Report. Now, of course, this Graph looks a little bit strange because it seems to only have one point. And that’s because on the Horizontal Axis, the Time Axis in this case, we only have one point for Q1. So we see Earned Value, Planned Value, and Actual Cost, but only on one point. So if © Copyright 2008-2012 Simon Sez IT, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

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we go into the Pivot Table itself, we can expand the quarter and we see that there are actually three weeks for which we have some Data. So let’s go back to looking at the Chart and now we’ve got a sensible Graph of Earned Value, Planned Value, and Actual Cost. So sometimes when we’re dealing with Graphical Data we face this kind of issue where we have to change the scale, particularly on the Horizontal Axis, in order to make the Chart make some sense in the particular situation we’re dealing with. So in the Summary Report we’re just going to look at the Resource Summary. This is another Report created via Excel and it’s a Bar Graph with the Remaining Work, Actual Work for each Work Resource, and it’s illustrated in Work Units. So I’ll click on View and give Excel a little bit of time to build that Report for me. Many of the other Summary Reports actually use Visio. So, what I’m going to do is I’m going to re-Format that in the usual way and I’ll get back to you in just a moment. Now, this Report is absolutely fine in principle, but you can see the problem here in that we have so many Categories and the vast majority of them don’t have any Actual Work. But I have a number of Filters I can apply. I could go down to the Type Filter here; currently only Work is Enabled. If I Enable Material instead, then I get a very interesting version of this because there are actually vast numbers of Materials. So that isn’t really going to help. So let’s go back to Work and then let’s Filter on the Resources. And let’s suppose that what I’m actually going to do is I’m going to de-Select all Resources and I just want to look at the named people that I’ve got. Now these are generally near the bottom of the list here. There’s Kim, there’s Dan. I think I’ll just leave those two on for now, click on OK, and there you can see a much more sensible Chart showing the Actual Work in the darker blue and the Remaining Work in the lighter blue for Dan and Kim. And, of course, all of my normal Chart, Design, Layout, Formatting, and Analysis options are available to me as well. So, that final Report we saw there was a Summary Report, which of course is not Time Phased Data. We don’t have Time along the Horizontal Axis. What we’re going to look at now, as we come to the end of this section, is we’re going to look at creating your own Visual Reports. Basically you have two options. You can start with one of the existing ones or you can just Create a new one. I’m going to demonstrate here Editing an existing one. We’ll take one of the ones we looked before. We’ll look at the Baseline Cost Report and to Create your own version © Copyright 2008-2012 Simon Sez IT, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

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of that, Select it and then click on Edit Template. Now this brings up a Field Picker Dialog where you can actually choose the Custom Fields that you want to appear in that Report. Now the two lists on the left represent all of the available Fields at the top and the available Custom Fields at the bottom. On the right are the Fields that are actually included in the current Report. So the one we’re Editing has these Fields available in it. So, when you’ve actually Created one of these Pivot Tables and the associated Pivot Chart, this is the Data that’s then available to you to actually manipulate the Chart once it’s been built. Now you’ll see that two of the Fields here on the right are Budget Cost and Budget Work. Let’s suppose that on this particular occasion what we want to do is we want to make pretty much the same kind of Pivot Table and Chart as we’ve got with the standard Report, but we’re going to base it on Baseline 1. So we’re going to instead of have Budget Cost, Budget Work, and Baseline Cost and Baseline Work, we’re going to put in Baseline 1 Budget Cost and Baseline 1 Budget Work. So I can Select both of those, click on Add. I can take out the straightforward Baseline ones. Don’t forget it’s a good idea not to have more Fields than you actually need over here and having Added to and Remove to, I could perhaps put the Baseline 1 Cost and Work and take out the Cost and Work which are not Baseline 1 and so on. So I can basically choose the Fields I actually need and then when I finish them, I click on Edit Template. It builds what’s called an OLAP Cube for me. I’m going to explain OLAP Cubes a little bit later on. Open Excel Report Template for Editing and then it’ll actually produce my new Report for me. So here is my Baseline Graph. It’s actually showing the original Data, the actual content of the Report hasn’t changed. So it has Cost and Work and in the middle Actual Cost. If instead of showing Cost and Work I want to show Baseline 1 Budget Cost, which is the Field I’ve just included, and Baseline 1 Budget Work, which is the other Field I’ve just included and I could take out Cost and Work. Then I finish up with a truly Customized Report because I’ve now got my Actual Cost and my Baseline 1 figures. So having given you a good idea of how the Field Picker works for Customizing a Visual Report, finally let’s look at Creating one from scratch. If you click on New Template you get this Dialog which shows a three step process for Creating your own Template. First of all choose whether it’s going to use Excel or Visio. We’ll stick with Excel. Then Select the Type of Data. Are we talking about Assignment Usage, Resource Usage, Task Usage, or are we talking about © Copyright 2008-2012 Simon Sez IT, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

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Summary Data, Task Summary, Resource Summary, Assignment Summary? Let’s suppose we were, say, using Task Usage Data. Then we say choose the Fields you want included in the Report. We’re back to the Field Picker that we saw just now. So that’s the Default for the list for this type of Report, but you can completely change that list. And, of course, you can include Custom Fields if you want to. Once you’ve got all the Fields that you want, you click on OK, and you’re new Report Template is Created. So that’s it on Visual Reports for this particular course. In the next section, we’re going to start looking at Customization. So please join me for that.

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Chapter 7 – Customization Video: Customizing the Workspace Toby: Hello. We’re looking at Advanced topics in Microsoft Project 2010 and this is the first section on Customization. Now there are various aspects of Customization in Microsoft Project 2010 and we’re going to be looking at quite a variety of them here. There’s Customization of Fields, Customization of Tables, Views, and Reports.

And we’re going to begin with

Customization of the Work Space. Now if you’ve been using Project 2010 for a while, you probably know quite a bit about Customization of the Work Space. I’m going to review a few of the basics, but I’m also going to look at some of the things that you may not have seen or that you may not have tried to do. So it’s time to get started. Now for many aspects of Customization you need to use the Microsoft Project 2010 Options. So if we go into Backstage View, click on Options, let’s take the General Tab for example. One of the Options there is to Enable or Disable Screen Tips, possibly change the Color Scheme, and quite an important one this, be able to change the Default View. I’ve got mine set to Gantt with Timeline. Obviously you can set it to whichever View you’d like. You also have options for Date Format, partly depending on your local of course and then your User Name and your Initials. So I’ll just look at one or two of these other options that you may have missed or ones that are particularly significant. On the Display Tab, obviously you’ll put your Currency Symbol there. Mine’s currently set to U.S. Dollar, Symbol and Currency. I mentioned before about the Entry Bar here. On the Schedule Tab most of the items there we’ve talked about as we’ve been going through the course so far, but right at the top don’t forget the Week starts on Day, the Fiscal Year starts on Month, and then Default Start Time, Default End Time, Hours per Day, Hours per Week, Days per Month, and so on. If you do need to change these, don’t forget to consider the impacts of and on your Project Calendar or Calendars. Don’t forget the Change Working Time Option as well where you can bring into line the Calendars and the figures that you’re specifying here. Now apart from these, it’s important to have your Proofing set up correctly. Not only your Dictionary Language, which I’ve got set here to English/U.S., but also when you’re dealing with © Copyright 2008-2012 Simon Sez IT, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

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Custom Fields, etc, you need to specify which Fields are subjected to Spell Checks when you run Spell Checks.

So if you have particular Fields, particularly Custom Fields where you’ve

Assigned them in a particular way to do a particular job, if you want to avoid Spell Checking in that Field, perhaps they have an interesting or unusual type of content, then you can Disable Spell Checking on those here. That’s an important one to know about as well. Now some of the other options we’ve already looked at on this course and many of them you can find the details you need if you don’t understand them from the available help. But again I’d like to just concentrate on one or two. We’ve looked at the Save options. Language options, pretty straightforward; I’ve got UK and U.S. English set up. It’s very straightforward to add additional languages if you need them. On the Advanced Tab, we’ve looked at some of these and actually used some of these already, but there’s a couple that I think are probably quite under-used. One of them is the Undo Levels setting, which Defaults to 20. If you’re doing a lot of detailed Editing on a Schedule, you might want to increase that to give you a long way back that you can Undo to, if you’re doing a lot of Editing work. Having said that, I don’t think it’s a good idea to get in the habit of doing a lot of work without Saving what you’ve done anyway. And down here another one that’s probably a little bit under-used which is the Number of Recent Documents Displayed. Again, you may want to be able to see a longer or shorter list of those. And down in the Display options the Time Units – Minutes, Hours, Days, and so on. Again, very useful to be able to change that to suit, perhaps to match other documents and styles that you’re working with. So I’m not going to spend any more time now on the basic options. What I’m going to do is take a look at the Quick Access Tool Bar and the Ribbon. Now the Quick Access Tool Bar is something that I think it really is very useful, where you can put a few key commands that you use a lot in an easily visible and attainable place. The little drop down on the right gives you a list of the available commands and you can switch them on and off, depending on what you’re doing. Here I’ve only got on four. Note I’ve got an additional command here. That little symbol there that you can see in the top right hand corner is to do with running a Macro and in fact in the next group of sections, after we’ve dealt with Customization, we’re going to be looking at Macros. So that’s actually going to be a useful thing to be able to do, as you’ll see. But at the moment I’ve got these few commands Enabled. If I wanted to Enable say, Quick Print, I’d Select it here. Quick Print is now visible. If I want to © Copyright 2008-2012 Simon Sez IT, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

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Delete it again I Delete it there. If I want to actually Customize the Quick Access Tool Bar and make different or additional buttons available, it’s quite straight forward. Again click on there and then click on More Commands. So the list of available commands is on the left. The list of what’s actually on the Quick Access Tool Bar is on the right and basically you can move anything that’s on the left and add it to the Quick Access Tool Bar on the right. It’s quite straight forward. Select, click Add, it’s now there. If I want to move the position of that on the Tool Bar, I can. And, of course, once it’s on the Tool Bar I can Enable or Disable it as I wish to. Now I’m going to assume that you’ve actually done a little bit of Customization with the Quick Access Tool Bar and I’m just going to concentrate on one or two things you may not be aware of.

One of them is that the

Customization for the Quick Access Tool Bar, looking at the control at the top right here, enables you to specify that you only want a particular Quick Access Tool Bar configuration for a particular project. So you can actually say for the project I’m working on, this is the Quick Access Tool Bar or you can say this is the one for all documents for all projects. That’s quite useful if within a particular project you have particular things you often need to do or maybe particular Macros that you tend to run for that project. That’s a good option to use. The other one is if in fact your issue is that you want all of your team to have the same Quick Access Tool Bar, there’s a facility down at the bottom here under Import/Export. Now with Import/Export you have two commands, you have Export and Import. If you start with Export, once you have a Quick Access Tool Bar Configuration that you like, you click on Export and it Exports it to a File and you can then go to each of the PCs that you want to have the same Quick Access Tool Bar and you can Import a copy of that File and that will set up the Quick Access Tool Bar accordingly. Don’t forget the Reset option up here as well if you want to put the Quick Access Tool Bar back to the way it started with. You have a Reset option there and of course there’s the little check box over here that lets you show the Quick Access Tool Bar below the Ribbon is you want to. So I’ve added one command, Format Painter, to this Quick Access Tool Bar. Once I finish with that I just click on OK. If I go back to my Quick Access Tool Bar I can see the Format Painter command there, complete with its Screen Tip. And just one other thing, again, you may not be aware of this, if you take pretty much any command on

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the Ribbon and right click it, there is an option to directly add it to the Quick Access Tool Bar or indeed to go into Customization of the Quick Access Tool Bar as well. Right, what we’re going to do now is to look at Customizing the Ribbon. Now the many features of this exercise are very similar to the Customization of the Quick Access Tool Bar and again I’m going to assume that you’re reasonably familiar with some of this. Easiest way to get into it is to right click on the Ribbon itself and then say Customize the Ribbon. Similar Dialog, in this case it relates to the Ribbon. And what I can do is to Add Commands, Tabs, and so on. There’s a limit to how much you can change the existing Groups and Tabs, but you can certainly create new ones, pretty much without limit. So what I’m going to do, just as a different kind of demonstration here, is to show how you can add a new Tab. Now I’m going to say that in this particular project I’ve got my ACME website development project, I’m going to add a new Tab and put a new Group on it and add a couple of commands to that Group. So, first of all, let’s set up the new Tab. It gets added there, Default name of “New Tab” and it has one Default Custom Group with a name of “New Group.” If I Select the Tab and click on Rename, it lets me Rename it. So I’m going to call it “ACME” and similarly with the Group, I can Rename the Group as well. So I’m going to Rename that to be “Tracking” say, so I’m going to use that as my Tracking Group for ACME. Now when I’ve actually done that I can then say, right now let me add some commands to the Tracking Group. Popular commands are listed here. So let me go down to say the Manually Scheduled Command and let me add that. If I Select Tracking Custom first and then Manually Schedule, click on Add, it automatically gets added to that Group. And if I then say I wanted to put a different one in there, say, a Quick Print Command, again once that’s selected it goes in below that one. Now when I’ve finished creating my new Group and Tab, if I click on OK, I can see my Tab appears here, and there’s my new Group. Now I mentioned before that there are limitations on what you can do within the Tabs and Groups within Project 2010 and in fact you’re restricted in terms of what you can do, in terms of adding buttons to Default Groups or Removing buttons from Groups. So if you want a Custom Group or indeed a Custom Tab, the best option is usually to create your own Tab or create your own Group and then Copy commands into it. You can, of course, do some other things. So, for instance, if on the right I Select a Tab like the one I’ve just created, I can change its position just © Copyright 2008-2012 Simon Sez IT, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

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by using the up and down buttons. And similarly within a Group we can change the position of a Group on a Tab. And one very good option is if you create a Group to put it on more than one Tab to make it readily available. The Groups that are already on the Tabs, the Default ones like the Data Group here; it’s quite easy actually to move this onto a different Tab. So I could take the Data Group here and actually move it by dragging onto my Tab. So there we are. Just one or two other points to mention here, first of all, Import/Export is available as it was for the Quick Access Tool Bar. Reset, of course, is available and if I click on OK to Save my changes to the Ribbon, there is also the facility to minimize the Ribbon using this button here. Now if you’re actually short of real estate, you need as much space on the screen as you can, minimizing the Ribbon is absolutely fine, and I work like that a lot of the time. In this case you can’t see the Groups on the Tab, you can still see the names of the Tabs up here. If you click on say the ACME Group, then the Group appears. Obviously the Group I made and the Data Tabs that I just moved to there. I can use the commands and whichever command I use, so for instance supposing I clicked on the Filter command here, then once I’ve used it, the Ribbon is minimized again and to bring it back I just press that button. So having taken you through Customization of the Work Space or most of the topics there anyway, I’d like to look at one other thing before we finish this section and that is to locate the Organizer because the Organizer is something we’re going to be using quite a bit from now on and it’s really an integral part of Customization to know about the Organizer. And it’s slightly hidden away I’m afraid. It’s on the View Tab, in the Resource Views group, and there’s an Other Views button if I click on that, and then click on More Views there is a button here, Organizer. And what the Organizer does is to give us access to a number of different things – Views, Reports, Modules, Tables, Filters, Calendars, Maps, Fields, and Groups; each of which we can Customize and each of which we can Move between our Global Project Template and our individual Project Files. And, in fact, that’s going to be an integral part of what we’re doing pretty much from now on. So that’s it on Customization of the Work Space. In the next section, we’re going to start looking at Customization of Fields or just Custom Fields. So, I’ll see you then.

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Video: Custom Fields Toby: Hello and welcome to the second section on Customization in Microsoft Project 2010 Advanced. In the last section we looked at Customization of the Work Space. In this section, we’re going to start to look at Customization of Fields. And in fact it’s really the main aspect of Customization that we’re looking at on this course. Although we will look at Customization of Views, Reports, Tables, and so on a little bit later on. So, time to get started. Now, Custom Fields are really a way of adding our own Data content, our own attributes for the entities that exist within a project. They’re primarily concerned with additional attributes for Tasks and Resources, although you can actually create Custom Fields for a project itself. Now we’re going to use the website project here and I’m going to create two Custom Fields, one for Resources and one for Tasks. So in order to access the Custom Fields, we go to the Project Tab and then within the Properties Group there is a Custom Fields button, click that and up comes the Custom Fields Dialog. Now you may well have come across Custom Fields before, but let me just explain them in a little bit of detail. Within the Microsoft Project Database, there is a set of what you might call Spare Fields, there are actually quite a lot of them, and they’re primarily to store additional information about Tasks and Resources. So we have Task Fields, we have Resource Fields. There are also some Custom Fields at the Project Level, but I’m not going to be concerned with those at the moment. Now against both Task and Resources you have a number of different types. There are Text Fields, we choose the type over here, Cost Fields, Date, Duration, Finish, Flag, Number, Start, etc. You have some for Task, some for Resource. If I look at the Task Text Fields, there are 30 of them, Number Text 1 to Text 30. And particularly if you’ve been working on a project for some time, somebody may well have stored some information in one of these Fields. There’s absolutely nothing to stop you putting anything you like in any of these Fields. But with Custom Fields we basically do two things, first of all, we Name the Field with a name that is meaningful in terms of the Data that we’re putting in there. And then normally we apply some rules, we impose a formula, we maybe do some sort of Graphical Allocation of icons. We can do anything within quite a wide range of capabilities to that Field. And we can use that Field to store information. We can include that Field in other Calculations. We can refer to it in other

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Fields. So basically what we’re doing is we’re extending the functionality of Microsoft Project with these Custom Fields. Now for the purposes of the first exercise, I’m going to apply a Custom Field to a Resource and I’m going to use one of the available Text Fields. Now you might be tempted just to use Text 1, but the point is you can use any of them in any order you like. So just to prove this point I’m going to say let me just choose, I’m going to use Text 29. It really doesn’t matter which one; however, I really need to make sure that somebody else hasn’t already used that, which is fine because the way I work is that if I want to use a Custom Field, if I’m going to start to store some Data in Text 29, I will always Rename it. And then anybody else looking at this list when they’re looking at my project will realize that Text 29 is being used for something else. So the first thing we need to do is to Rename it. Now the Data I’m going to put into this Field must be Text Data because it’s Text Type and what I’m going to do is to set up a Field for each Resource which says how experienced that person is. It’s a very subjective sort of qualification. But when I’m looking at my plans and I put my Resources onto individual Tasks, I want to say, “Is this a very experienced person? Is this somebody who’s a starter or perhaps somebody with two or three year’s experience?

So

basically knows what they’re doing, but may be doesn’t have a huge amount of experience.” And I’m just going to set up three Categories to begin with. So, first of all, I’m going to Rename the Field and instead of just calling it Text 29, I’m going to call it “Experience Level.” Click on OK and you now see its called Experience Level and then in brackets just reminding that it’s Text 29. Now there are some sets of Radio buttons down here that control additional information that I can provide about my new Custom Field – Attributes, two related to Calculation, and one related to Values to Display. Now I’m going to use an example including Calculation a little bit later on. So I’ll just ignore those two for the moment. I’m going to look at Custom Attributes and Values to Display and I’ll start with Custom Attributes. Now if I leave Custom Attributes set at None, what that actually means is that for the Experience Level Data that I’m going to add into this Text Field, there’s basically no restriction. There are no special Attributes. You can just type into that Field whatever you like. So you could say, “Very experienced employee,” or “Only started in January 2011.” You could type anything in that Field that you wanted to. But I’m not going to do that. What I’m going to do is I’m going to specify that the Type of this Field © Copyright 2008-2012 Simon Sez IT, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

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is actually it’s a Look-up Text Field. Now with a Look-up Text Field what actually happens is I will provide a list of available Text Values to go into that Field and to provide that list of Values I click on the Look-up button. That brings up the Edit Look-up Table for Experience Level Dialog. Now this is where I specify the available Values. And the first available Value I’m going to put in there is Senior. So this is the most Senior members of staff. For the, if you like, the Standard Setting here, will be Staff. And then I’ll have a third section which I’ll just call “Starter.” So basically any of my Resources can have a classification of Senior, Staff, or Starter. Now I’m only going to apply this to the Resources that work for me directly, of course. Not for external Resources or Materials or anything like that. Now I can change the order of the list here if I want to using the buttons on the right. A couple of other things though down in the Settings here, which are quite important. User Value from the Table as the Default Entry for the Field. Now let’s assume that Staff is the Default Value, so Select that and then tick the box, and say Set Default. Staff is now the Default Value. You can see it highlighted in blue there. Now what’s the Display Order for the Table? Is it alphabetical or something? You’ve got an option of Alphabetical Ascending, Alphabetical Descending. I’m going to stick by Row Number, which means they’re going to be in the order that they appear here. And then finally for Data Entry options I can say, “Allow additional items to be entered into the Fields.” That means when I’m choosing one of these I could actually set up a fourth Value just by typing it in when I’m entering Data in my project and that would appear in this Look-up Table. Now I don’t want to allow that on this occasion. So there we are. Note also I could Import a Look-up Table from somewhere else, which I’m not going to do now. There’s my Table setup, Close, and I’ve now got my Look-up Table complete. The final step, as I’m not dealing with Calculations here, is to look at Values to Display. I’m going to come back to that in just a moment. So what I need to do is click on OK. Now let’s take a look at the Resource Sheet and let’s introduce now into the Display I’ve got here my new column. Now I’m actually going to choose that one, Insert Column, and of course I can go down now to my Custom Field, Experience Level, there it is. And, of course, it’s empty throughout. But if I go say to Matthew Rouse here who’s a Tester. Note I now get a little drop down here and they’ll let me choose from my three available Values. Now, Matthew’s been with © Copyright 2008-2012 Simon Sez IT, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

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us two or three years, so he comes in as Staff. Sandra Dawson is actually Senior. Les Routledge is also Senior, but Anna here is a Starter. So you can see how the Look-up Values work and it makes it really easy not only to enter the Data, but to enter the Data in a consistent way. Now, I’ve got one other thing to demonstrate in relation to this particular Custom Field. Let’s bring up the Custom Fields Dialog again, Select this Custom Field, and then we’re going to make a change to it. I mentioned last time that we have an option under Values to Display of either showing Data or Graphical Indicators. And what I’m going to do now is to change this particular Custom Field so that it uses Graphical Indicators. Now with the Data shown you see the words Staff, Senior, Starter. With Graphical Indicators we replace that Data by a suitable icon. So I click on Graphical Indicators. First of all, stick with the choice there of non-Summary rows. So I’m not going to use this on any Summary rows that use these Resources and what I’m going to say is let’s start with Experience Level equals and let’s take Starter. Now for the Starter I want this to be a little bit of a warning situation for me. Here’s somebody who’s new to the job and I want to keep an eye on what they’re doing. So if I click on the available icons, I’m going to put a little amber warning Indicator for a Starter. Next I’m going to say if the Value equals, now the next available Value is Staff. Now with Staff, I’m pretty happy with leaving them pretty much to get on with the job, just do regular reviews with them when I need to. So I’m going to use this green symbol for a Starter. And the third Category, which is a Senior person, so if I go into one of the Senior members of staff, I’m always happy when I see the Senior staff working on a job. So the icon I’m going to use for them, I’m going to use a Smiley Face and say when I see one of those on the job I’m really happy. So I finish setting up my Graphical Indicators, click on Ok, click on OK again, and now you can see those Graphical Indicators in place. So there we are. We’ve a Custom Field for Resource. We’ve used a Look-up Table and we’ve used Graphical Indicators as different ways of showing the capabilities of Project 2010 in this. In the next section, we’re going to look at setting up a Custom Field for a Task, but in this one we’re actually going to do some Calculations. So, I’ll see you then.

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Video: Custom Fields Relating to Tasks Toby:

Hello and welcome to section three on Customization in Microsoft Project 2010

Advanced. In this section, we’re going to create some more Custom Fields and we’re going to concentrate on Tasks this time. And in particular for the building project we’re going to create some tax related Custom Fields. So, let’s get started. Now I have here the Project File for the Greendale Plot 03 building. I’m just going to pull aside here, I’ve actually put the Cost Table on there and basically apart from the Fixed Cost Columns there, I have Total Cost, Baseline, Variance, Actual, Remaining, etc. What I’m going to put in here, just Insert Column, is just put a straightforward Standard Field of Cost. Just to make it a little bit more convenient for us to see what’s going on. Now what I’m going to do here is I’m going to say that for all or most of the items in my Schedule, each of the Tasks, there will be a tax to pay. Now in some cases the tax will vary in percentage and in some cases they are actually tax free. And I’m not really going to go into all of that level of detail now, but I’m just going to keep it simple for the purposes of this exercise and you’ll be able to see when we do the exercise how you can actually build in some of those complications if you want to. So I’m actually going to create two Custom Fields. The first one is going to be the Tax Rate on a particular Task and this will be expressed as a percentage and we’re going to say that by Default the percentage is 10%. So we call up the Custom Fields Dialog again and this time it’s a Custom Field on Task. The Type we have to choose. This time we’re going to use a Number Type for the percentage. Note that the Types determine what sort of Data you can put in each of these Fields. So, for instance, if you choose a Date Type or a Start Type or a Finish Type, it has to be a Date Value that goes in there. For Number Types then they have to be Numbers. Flag Fields can only contain Yes or No Values and so on. So on this occasion we’re going to put in a Number Value. So click on Number. We’re given several Number Fields to choose from. I think I’m going to use Number 2 this time, for no particular reason. I’m going to Rename it and I’m going to call it “Tax Percent.” As usual that’s displayed Tax Percent Number 2 and now I’m going to say what are its Attributes. Now we’re not using a Look-up this time, although of course we could, we could say well the available Tax Percents are 10%, 15, 20, but I’m not going to use that in this occasion.

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So I’m just going to have no particular Attributes on there at all. It will just be a number. Don’t worry about Calculation at the moment and Values to Display I’ll just leave at Data for the moment. So, click on OK and that Field will be created. So let’s just scroll across here. I’m now going to Display my new Custom Field using Add New Column here. Go down to Tax Percent, there it is, Defaults to zero. Clearly if I’m going to treat the Tax Percentage on each of these items as 10% by Default, I don’t really want to have to go through and type for 10 in each of those. But you can actually use the same Fill Down that you use in something like Excel. So set one of them to the correct Value, Select the Column, and then the Fill Down is Control-D as a keyboard shortcut, and you’ve got 10% in all of your Values. That’s a useful little shortcut you can use. Now the next thing we’re going to do is to create our second Custom Field and the Type of this one will clearly be Number, but more specifically than Number it needs to be of a Type Cost because rather than have a Number like Percent, which is just a Number, it could be a whole number or a decimal, we want something that’s actually got a Currency Type. So I’m going to use on this occasion Cost 4 and Cost 4 will be Calculated by multiplying the Cost by the Tax Percentage as a Percentage. And I’m going to call this new Field “Tax Payable.” So once again into Custom Fields, this time the Type is Cost. It’s Cost 4 that I’m going to use and I Rename it to Tax Payable. Now before we looked at a Custom Attribute of None where we’re just putting in a Value, entering it directly from the keyboard; we’ve looked at Look-up where we use a Look-up Table. This time we’re going to use a formula and one thing to bear in mind when you’re using a formula is it’s actually quite a dangerous option in some ways in that you could replace existing content with a Calculated Value. And when you Select this option one of the things that happens is in Microsoft Project comes up with this warning, “Any existing Data in the Tax Payable Field will be discarded as all Values will now be Calculated by the formula. To Enable the formula and replace all Data there click on OK.” That’s what we’re going to do, click on OK, and now we can click on the Formula button and that lets us enter the formula that’s needed to Calculate the Tax Payable. Now the formula is entered in here, but you have a number of facilities to help you. First of all, you have a number of buttons here to put in various operators, both arithmetic operators like plus © Copyright 2008-2012 Simon Sez IT, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

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and minus, and then also brackets, equal sign, greater than, less than, logic symbols, and/or, not. Access to all of the available Fields Categorized by their types both Custom Fields and Standard Fields; a wide range of function available – Conversion, Date, Time, Text Functions, including String Handling and so on, plus a facility to Import Formulas as well. Now you can just Edit. You could type the formula in here if you wanted to. But just to show you how to use some of these other facilities, let’s say, in this case, what we need to do is to get the Cost of the item. So let’s start with a Field of Cost, so in the Cost Category we want Cost and then we want to multiply it by the Tax Percent which comes under Number. A lot of Number Fields so it comes under Custom Number and it’s up there, Tax Percent, but of course this Tax Percent is a whole number and I need to divide it by 100 to make it into the appropriate fraction. So there’s the division symbol and I can just type 100. So my formula is Tax Payable equals Cost times Tax Percent divided by 100, click on OK. Another warning about that, click on OK, click on OK again, and my Tax Payable should now be Calculated. So let’s show that particular column on the Chart now. So click on there, go down to Tax Payable which is there and there we are. We are on our $120 purchase; tax is $12, and so on. So there we are. It will clearly be straightforward to extend this now. For instance to do a price including tax by adding the Cost and the Tax Payable Columns together and building up a much more complex set of Costing Calculations and Data than we have already. But just one other thing on Custom Fields while we’re about it, they are one of the features of Project 2010 that you can actually transfer between projects. So, for instance, if you wanted to take this definition and use it in other projects, it’s quite straight forward really. If you go to View and actually get into the Organizer as I showed you before, the Field definitions, that’s the Fields Tab here shows the Custom Fields you have defined in the current project and I could, for instance, Copy these two definitions, Tax Payable and Tax Percent, into the Global to MPT Template and then they would then be available to other projects accessing the same Global Template to Copy in the definitions as well. So that can give me a high level of uniformity and reduce the amount of work to set up what could become increasingly complex Custom Fields. So that’s it on the Custom Fields side for now. In the last section on Customization, we’re going to look at Customization of Tables, Views, and Reports. So, I’ll look forward to seeing you for that.

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Video: Customizing Tables, Views & Reports Toby: Hello and welcome to this fourth and final section on Customization in Microsoft Project 2010 Advanced. In this section, we’re going to look at Customization of Views and Tables. I’m going to assume that you’re reasonably familiar with this anyway, but I’m going to look at one or two of the newer features in Project 2010 that you may not have used yet and also at some of the more advanced tools and techniques.

I did look at Customization of Reports, both the

conventional types of Report and Visual Reports earlier on in the course. So, let’s start with Views. Well here we are back at our building project and I’m going to illustrate a few points about Views and how you can Customize the look and feel of a View both on a temporary basis and on a more permanent basis. In this particular View at the moment, I’ve narrowed the Task Name column and this has forced a couple of things to happen. First of all, it changes what I can see in the next column, so I obviously as you know I can drag the partition there left or right. But also as I make the width of the Task Name column narrower the Text in the column changes to Wrapping. Now the only column in a View that has this automatic Text Wrapping feature is the Task Name Column. As we’ll see in a moment you can actually wrap the text in any of the columns if it helps, but in the Task Name Column it automatically wraps when you get to a point where there isn’t enough room on one row to include all of the text in the column. So, if we take this particular Task here, Project Set up and Equipment Hire, it couldn’t fit in the available space so the text wrapped. Now if you actually don’t want the text to wrap and you want it to fit no matter what, there are a number of ways you can do this. One of them is if you hover over the right hand edge of the Header of this column and double click it, you know you’re there because you got the two-headed arrow there, double click and it automatically adjusts its width so that it accommodates the widest Task Name entry on the sheet. Obviously if you’ve got a very long project, it can take you quite a while to scroll up and down to see which is longest. That’s a good automated way of getting the Task Names in View without wrapping the text. Now let me just quickly show you how to control the wrapping of text. Where you have a column Task Name Column in this case, Select the column and on the Format Tab under Gantt Chart Tools, Column Settings in the Columns Group, there is a button there where we Enable or

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Disable Wrap Text. So let me Disable Wrap Text. I’m now going to make the Text in that column on that particular Task longer. So I’m just going to type “and so on,” Confirm that, you see what happens and that is that the text actually just runs out of the right hand end of the column and you can’t see it. Now the Task Name Column is the only one that works on that principle and note the Screen Tip if I hover over it. But in fact if I go to another column, so for instance, supposing I go to the Resource Names Column here, which does not automatically Wrap Text, if I go to the Column Settings for that Column and Enable Wrap Text note that the Text does indeed Wrap. Now this can be particularly useful in many situations such as this one where the Resource Name lists very long for each of the Tasks on my project. There are several items for many of them and it just makes it easier, particularly if I want to Print this out or if I want to Scroll down and look at things in great detail. However, it’s always important to remember that’s not the Default Setting for anything other than the Task Name Column. Just one note there about the Column Settings Options. Depending on the screen resolution that you’re looking at, you may or may not see the same buttons as me in any of these groups. There is of course a Wrap Text button on its own just there, but the Column Settings is usually a pretty safe place to go to find the main ones that you’re likely to see. Notice this bottom option here, Display Add New Column. We’ve seen this already. If you look at the right hand end of the visible Table, there’s this Add New Column here just waiting to be used where you can Select any of the available Fields, including Custom Fields, Select and then not only does the Selected Data appear, but Add New Column is there again. That’s quite a nice way of Inserting extra Columns of Data in a Table with minimal effort. Now one other thing I’d like to look at which you may well be familiar with anyway and that’s Row Height. To change the Height of a Row you normally drag on the bottom of the row, up or down. You can’t do parts of rows when you’ve dragged a row bigger, the next setting is twice as big, the next is three times as big, and so on. And you can, of course, Select several Rows in one of the usual ways, drag the bottom one and all of the Rows are resized accordingly. And so let’s look finally at Customization of Tables and Views. Now I’ve currently got a Gantt Chart View and the Table that’s shown apart from any minor Customizations I’ve done already is basically the entry Table, both of which I’m sure you’re familiar with. If you want to apply a different Table in a View, it’s pretty straight forward. You go to the View Menu, you look at the © Copyright 2008-2012 Simon Sez IT, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

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list of available Tables, and you choose a different Table. If I want to create a Table of my own and bear in mind I can pretty much put any Columns I want in a Table, the Customization options are either Insert any Columns that aren’t all ready here, Hide Columns that you don’t want to see, make pretty much any changes that you like on a temporary basis, or you can make a completely new Table that you give a name to and store it away, maybe share with other people that you work with, and use that Table as one of your Custom Tables. To make a Custom Table, it’s pretty easy actually, in terms of the mechanics. Actually choosing what’s in it is another matter. Click on Tables. Let’s suppose I wanted to make a different Cost Table, so this Cost Table I’ve got here has got Fixed Cost, Fixed Cost Accrual, Cost, Total Cost, Baseline, Variance, Actual Remaining, okay. Now what I’m going to do, I’m going to Customize this Cost Table and I’m going to make one of my own. So, click on Tables, click on More Tables, there’s the Cost Table Selected. Let’s make a Copy of it and let’s call it “TA Baseline 1 Cost.” Now in order to, take that ampersand out, what I can now do in this Table is to decide which of the Fields that I want and which of the ones that I don’t want. Now I’m going to have the ID, the Task ID. I’m going to have the Name. I’m going to take out Fixed Cost and I’m going to take out Fixed Cost Accrual. I have a Cost Table. I have a Cost Field. This Field is Cost as well. Baseline Cost, Cost Variance, Actual Cost, Remaining Cost. I’ve got several Costs. Let me take that one out. I’m going to leave in my Tax Percent and Tax Payable. I’m going to take out that remaining Cost and I’m going to take out that Cost. Oh by the way, Baseline Cost, I’m going to change that to Baseline 1 Cost, hence the name TA Baseline 1 Cost. When I finish making the changes that I want to make, I can say choose from these options, lock the first column, autoadjust Header row heights, show the Add New Column interface. Note I have facilities to Copy rows here as well and then there’s a check box here which says whether this actually appears in the Menu. Let me put it in the Menu, click on OK. I now see my new Table called TA Baseline 1 Cost and I can apply it in this particular View. And there we are. In fact Baseline 1 Costs are all zero at the moment, but I’ve got my Tax Percent. I’ve got my Tax Payables and so on. So that’s my Gantt View but with a Custom Table included. Now whether or not I’m using a Custom Table I can, of course, make a Custom View. So if I now say Other Views and More Views, I can take the current View which is Gantt Chart, do a Copy. I’ll call the Copy “Baseline 1 Gantt Chart.” The Table I’m going to use is TA Baseline 1 Cost, the Custom Table I created just now. No Grouping. Filter on all Tasks. I could in fact © Copyright 2008-2012 Simon Sez IT, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

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term choose a subset of the Task using Filters if I wanted to, but I’ll stick with All Tasks. I want this one to show in the Menu as well, so click on OK, click on Close. In the case of Tables, if I click on the Tables dropdown here I can see my Table here, ready to use in any View. In the case of Views, when I right click on the left hand bar there my Baseline 1 Gantt Chart appears in the Menu system there. So there we are, I’ve Saved both of those, the Table and the View as Custom objects within my project. Again, if I go into the Organizer, More Views, Organizer; if I look at Views, for example, I can see my Baseline 1 Gantt Chart View there which is available in this project. I could of course Copy it to the Global Project and in the Global Project that gives me the ability to Copy it to other projects. And of course for Tables, same argument, TA Baseline 1 Cost, I can Copy that into the Global Project, and again that will be available to use elsewhere as well. So that’s basically it on Customization, a bit of a lightening run through the Custom Tables and Views at the end there. Good things to experiment with, particularly if you want to bring about some Standardization and Economical working. Now, in the next section, we’re going to start what perhaps for many people will be a new experience in terms of Project 2010 and that is we’re going to do a little bit of programming in Microsoft Project 2010. So I look forward to seeing you for that.

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Chapter 8 – Macros Video: Basics of Programming with VBA Toby: Hello and welcome back to Microsoft Project 2010 Advanced. In this section, we’re going to start to look at Macros and Programming in Project 2010. This is a topic which many people would really like to get to grips with. Some people are perhaps a little bit worried about it. You may or may not have some experience of it in other contexts, but I’m going to take you through the basics first of all, even though this is an Advanced course, Programming may well be new to you. So I’m going to take you through a very straight forward example in this first section. In fact, in the first section you won’t really see any Program Code at all, but you will find out a lot about how to set yourself up to learn to program in Microsoft Project 2010. The language we use is Microsoft’s VBA, that you probably heard mention of. That stands for Visual Basic for Applications and that language is actually used across the Microsoft Office 2010 Application Program Suite. So if you learn a bit of Macro Programming in Microsoft Project, you may well be able to use it in Word or Excel or Power Point, etc. So it’s time we got started. Now I’d like to start by explaining why we use Macros and Programming in Project 2010. There are a few reasons, but perhaps the two most important ones are these. First of all, Macros are there to perform repetitive Tasks. If you have a sequence of steps that you perform over and over again, rather than going through that sequence every time manually and possibly making mistakes, possibly boredom and tiredness creeping in, you start to forget what to do, you click the wrong Field, or whatever it might be. Macros don’t make mistakes. Basically they do exactly what you tell them to do and they’ll do it as quickly as possible as many times as you need them to do it. So they’re a great way of doing repetitive Tasks very reliably. The second main reason for using Macros and Programming is that they can perform very complex Tasks, things that involve a lot of Calculations, Comparisons, Logic, and so on. Macros never get tired, they never really get bored with what they’re doing. They’ll do anything as complicated as you like, provided you can set them up in the first place, of course, and they’ll do it over and over again without suffering from being a bit tired on a Friday evening or something like that. Now if both of those main reasons, the third reason actually goes particularly hand-in-hand with them and that is that they’re great where you have a very high volume of work to perform. Sometimes © Copyright 2008-2012 Simon Sez IT, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

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the things you need to do, there’s just so much of it to do that the more of it you can automate, the more of it you can get done. Now despite what I just said about performing particularly complex sequences of steps in Microsoft Project in Macros, I’m going to demonstrate this with a very straight forward sequence of steps and I’m going to run through that sequence of steps before we do anything with Macros. I’ve got the ACME website project open. I’m going to Select Gantt Chart View, in fact it’s already in Gantt Chart View, but I’m still going to Select it for reasons that will become apparent a little bit later on. So Open up there, Select Gantt Chart. Then I’m going to go to the View Tab and I’m going to in the Split View Box click on Details, which actually effectively splits the view. Now at the moment the top half is Selected. I’m going to Select the bottom half, which currently shows the Task Form. And then I’m going to the drop down here where Task Form is already Selected and I’m going to go to More Views and I’m going to Select a different View. I think I will select Task Usage View and then click on Apply. So I’ve got a combination View with Gantt Chart in the top and Task Usage in the bottom. So there we have the steps that I’m going to perform and let’s assume that I do that on a regular basis, say 20 times a day, and I go through that same procedure. Now what I’m going to do is to Save that procedure as a Macro. And the way I do that is by actually going through it with a Recorder running. Now as we’ll see later, you could actually Type in the commands into a Macro and that’s what we’re going to eventually get to in a couple of sections time, but for the moment we’re going to Record Macros and the facility to Record Macros is accessed from the View Menu. On the right hand end there’s a Group called Macros, a drop down button here, and we choose Record Macro. Now the Record Macro Dialogue has quite a lot of things in it and virtually all of them are very important. I’m quickly going to go through them now and just set one or two options, just to Record this first Macro and then we’ll come back to the detail of them in subsequent sections. First of all, we give our Macro a name; there are some naming rules that I’ll talk about in a little while, but I’m going to call this “Favorite View.” I can use a shortcut key for the Macro. I’m going to come back to that in a little while, and I can store it either in the Global Template File or in this project. I’m going to store it in this project for now. And I give it a description. I’m going to change it to “Grow Favorite View” and then a little bit of information about what it © Copyright 2008-2012 Simon Sez IT, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

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does. Then I have this pair of Radio button sets down here and they’re actually very important. I’ll briefly explain them to you now. We, in this particular Macro, are just changing Views in a project, but we will get to Macros where we’re looking at rows and columns of information. We’re actually Selecting Rows and Selecting Columns. Now let’s suppose that in a particular situation I’ve got Row 4 in my project Selected, this one here requirements. And let’s suppose that I go from Row 4 to Row 7 as part of what I’m doing. Now when I went from Row 4 to Row 7 why did I do that? Was it because I’d gone down three, so wherever I am, go down three rows from 4 that takes you to 7? Or was it particularly and specifically because I needed to go to Row 7? Now if it was only going down three from where I was, that’s a Relative Move. Whereas if I specifically needed to go to Row 7, that’s an Absolute Move. Now, when you Record a Macro you can either Record Row References as Relative or Absolute Row References. Now if it’s a Relative Row Reference that means whenever we move between Rows, it’s up so many or down so many. If it’s Absolute, it’s going to that specific Row. Similarly, this Group on the right and a very slightly different way, but its similar principle.

When you’re looking at Column

References, is it Absolute, i.e., a specific Field you’re going to? Or are you just moving two to the right or three to the left or whatever it might be? Now we’ll have a limited use for those on this course, but it’s very important to understand the difference between Relative and Absolute Referencing. So we’re going to stick with the Macro as it is, Favorite View. I’m going to store it in this project, put in a description. All we now need to do is to click OK to start Recording. So click OK, go carefully through our procedure, make sure we’ve got the Gantt Chart Selected, View Tab of course. Then click Details check box in the Split View Group, Select the Lower Pane, and then go down to More Views and we’re going for Task Usage, click on Apply, and that’s the end of our Recording. Now in order to stop Recording we use another button in the Macros one here, Stop Recording, and our Macro is now Recorded. So let’s now run this Macro and see what it does. I’ve restored everything to its previous state, so we’re back at the straight forward Gantt Chart View. Click on Macros, View Macros. There’s a list of available Macros. The ones which are associated with this project in this case or prefixed by the name of the project, ACME Proposed Implementation to .mpp, then the exclamation mark, and Favorite View; so that’s my Macro. These are a couple of older ones

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here. So click on Run and we’ll see what happens. There we are. That whole sequence of steps run through in less than a second I should think. Now let’s start to look at one or two of those additional features of the operation of our Macro that I mentioned before. First of all, if we go back into Macros and View Macros and make sure the one we’ve been working on is Selected, if I click Options then I’m given a Dialog, Macro Options Dialog, where I can set up a shortcut key to run this Macro. Now various shortcut keys are already in use for other things. So if I choose a shortcut key that is already in use for something else such as the Control and O option, click on OK, and Close. That won’t actually help because Control and O, if I press it brings up the Open Dialog for Opening a different project. So let’s change that, let’s go back in, try again, Options. Let me try Control-J, click on OK, click on Close. I’m back to my starting status. Let’s try Control-J. Ah, that’s better. That seems to work absolutely fine. And now we can look at those one or two other options as well that we looked at in an earlier section. If I go up to the Quick Access Tool Bar and click on More Commands with which I can actually Customize the Quick Access Tool Bar. I can say there’s currently on my Quick Access Tool Bar access to one of those other Macros. So let me Remove that and on the left hand side where I choose Commands, let’s look at Macros. There’s the Macro we’ve just created. Let’s Add that to the Quick Access Tool Bar. We can obviously change the position, but I’m going to leave it on the end for now. Click on OK and now if I press that button, note the Screen Tip that tells me it’s my Favorite View Macro, click on that and there we are. That’s a fairly easy way of running my Macro. Now the other option of course is to put access to the Macro on the Ribbon. You can’t actually Add Macros to existing Standard Groups on Ribbon Tabs. What you need to do is to Create a Custom Group, which we looked at earlier on, and then you can a button to run the Macro to one of those Custom Groups. I’ll leave you to try that out for yourself. You’ve all ready seen the procedure in a previous unit, so it should be absolutely fine. Now we’ve seen how to then Create a Macro by Recording it and various ways of running it both using the drop down on the Macros button here in the Macros Group on the View Tab and also Applying a keyboard shortcut and putting it on the Quick Access Tool Bar. So in all sorts of ways of Recording and Running Macros now, the next step is to actually write them, to actually look at the Code that’s in these © Copyright 2008-2012 Simon Sez IT, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

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Macros and be able to write something really powerful, flexible, and time saving yourself. And that’s what we’re going to start to look at in the next section. So, I’ll see you then.

© Copyright 2008-2012 Simon Sez IT, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

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Video: Writing Code for Macros Toby: Hello and welcome to this second section on Macros and Programming in Microsoft Project 2010 Advanced. In the first section, we Recorded a Macro and used it to perform a sequence of steps several times and that’s really what Macros are for. In this section, we’re going to start to look at actually writing Macros and understanding something about how Macro Code actually works. Before we do that I’d just like to make one important point. You could use Macros purely in the way that we used them in the first section. You could Record them, replay them, Record them, replay them. You would find it’s quite restrictive in terms of what you could do, but you would be able to perform several types of operation automatically, quickly, reliably, and so on. So you don’t actually have to learn how to write the Code for Macros yourself, but with this section and the next few, we’re really devoting ourselves to finding out about how to actually write Code and understand, to some extent as I say, how it works and exactly what it does. A lot of people don’t really like the idea of Programming, but as I hope to show you, it’s really not that bad and you can achieve some pretty amazing results with a relatively small amount of knowledge. So, let’s get started. So as before we click on the View Menu and Macros and within the list of three Macros there, there’s ours right at the top, Favorite View. Rather than Run, this time we’re going to go into Edit. And that opens what’s called the Visual Basic Editor. Now the Visual Basic we’re using is actually called Visual Basic for Applications, as it says there. The Editor is often referred to as the VBE or the Visual Basic Editor and it has a number of windows within it. There are others that sometimes appear, as you’ll see later on and the first thing I’m going to do is to start to explain what some of these windows are for. Now perhaps the most important window here is this one on the left, which is called The Project Explorer. And with the Project Explorer you can choose between the available and open projects that you’re working on, which one you particularly want to work on at the moment. Now at the moment there are two projects. The first ones collapsed, you can’t quite see it. There are little plus and minus buttons on the left here that you can use to expand and collapse the projects. The two projects I’ve got are at the top. The project that you’ll virtually always see here, which is Project Global, the Global Project which we use to hold much of the content of Microsoft Project

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that we’re using in more than one project. And then we have the currently open project which is ACME Proposed Implementation.mpp. I can move these vertical dividers here in order to make things more or less visible. Within each of these two projects there is a structure and the structure will vary a little bit depending on the situation, but this is pretty typical. We have first of all, a branch that says Microsoft Project Objects and within this we’ll usually see this thing, this project. And this represents the project itself, the particular project, in this case, the Global MPT. Then we have another branch of the structure, which is called Forms and this contains the User Forms that we’re working on in this project. Now I’m going to show you a User Form in a little while and explain what a User Form is all about and then we have another branch which says Modules. And the Modules are actually the containers for the Code, the Macro Code that we’ve written. So if I Select say Module 2 here, that is the Macro Code that is in Module 2. If I Select Module 1, it’s actually empty. If I Select Module 3, that’s the Code in Module 3. So it’s this Macro Code that we’re going to be concentrating on in this section and the next one. Within our current project, which is the ACME Proposed Implementation, again, we’ve got the Microsoft Project Objects branch which has got this project in it. There are no Forms in this project at the moment, so the Forms branch is empty. You can’t see anything there. And there are two Modules. That’s the first Module which is also empty. This is the second Module and this has got our Macro in it, Favorite View. When we Recorded our Macro, that is exactly what was Recorded. So let’s look at this Module 2 and I’ll go through exactly how this works. I’m not going to worry too much about the individual commands, but I’m going to look at the overall structure of it. First of all, almost always the first thing you’ll see here is a line that says Sub or a line that includes Sub. Sub is short for Subroutine and it basically is a division of Programming Code into chunks and the reason it’s divided into chunks or segments of Code is partly to make it more manageable, partly to make it reusable. You can perhaps use one piece of Code in several different places. So Sub begins it, End Sub, End Subroutine ends it. So this is a Subroutine. And we Recorded the Macro, Favorite View, this is the Subroutine that was created. Now within the Subroutine there are lines of Code and the way it works is that Project executes the Commands in sequence, starting at the beginning and going through step by step, 1, 2, 3, so on. And it will go through those in sequence. Now there are ways of changing the sequence, adapting the sequence, depending on circumstances that we’re going to look at a little bit later © Copyright 2008-2012 Simon Sez IT, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

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on, but for the moment just assume that it goes from the top through. Now the first two lines, as you can see, are significantly different, mainly because they’ve got a different color; they’re green. And the reason they’re green is that they are Comment Lines. These do not cause any Code, nothing happens. They don’t cause something with Displayed, Change, Deleted, anything. They are Comments there purely to help me know what this Subroutine is about or when it was Recorded or any other information I’d like in there at all. And the thing that makes them Comment Lines is the fact that they begin with that apostrophe character, the single quote. And when you put a single quote at the beginning of a line it becomes a Comment Line. Project 2010 doesn’t try to do anything with it, it looks at it and says, “Oh that’s Comment, I’ll just ignore it.” Now the Comments are actually very important although they don’t do anything. Particularly when you’re Subroutines start getting long and complicated, the Comments are what help you explain to others and indeed to yourself what the Code is doing. Now the ones that aren’t green, the ones that aren’t Comments are the ones that actually do the work. And some of these, if you look at what they say, for instance, the last one, View Apply, Name equals Task Usage, even if you’d never look at Programming Code before you can probably look at that say, “That must be something to do with putting that Task Usage View on.” And that’s exactly what it is. Some of the others like Form View Show, you may say, “Well what does that mean?” Now we’re going to look at some of those in more detail later on, but for the moment that’s the basic structure. So you have Sub and End Sub, Comment Lines, Commands, it’s executed in sequence from the beginning to the end. So now let’s look at one of the other types of Object that we have here. And let’s look at this one, the Form Select Supplier Form. Now if I Select in the Project Explorer a Form, what I see on the right dramatically changes because I no longer see Programming Code, I see a User Form. And a User Form is a way that we either provide information to one of our Users or indeed get input from a User. This particular Form which has a caption at the top, Select Supplier and which is called Select Supplier Form, is going to give a list of available Suppliers in this box here, as you’ll see in a little while and then it’s going to let the User Select a Supplier and click this Next button. Now how the list of Suppliers gets in there is something I’m not really going to worry about at the moment, again I’ll come back to that later. But this button, the Next button is quite an interesting one because if I right click on that button and click on the View Code Option I’ll see that there is a piece of Code, just this little bit here that corresponds to clicking the Next © Copyright 2008-2012 Simon Sez IT, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

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button. So Next button click, it’s a Sub, again it’s got Sub and End Sub and it’s Private. Don’t worry about Private at the moment. It basically says that this is only available to use in certain places. But it’s a Sub, End Sub, Next button click, and it says me.hide. If a Form says me.hide that says hide me. The User can’t see me anymore and what all this means is that on this Form, the User Form, Select Supplier Form, if I click the Next button the Form will hide itself. Now when I’ve looked at that Code, if I Close using the little Close button at the top right there, I’m back at the Form. Now it’s very easy to Add Controls as these are to a Form. There’s a Tool Box of Controls over here. If I wanted to Add another button, let’s say I wanted to Add another Command button, I could click here and I could Draw it on here. So there’s Command button 1. That, if I right click, doesn’t currently have any Code; I’ve not created any. It gives me an empty Sub to put some Code, but I haven’t got any at the moment and I’m not going to put any in there. I can Add Buttons. I can Add Pictures. I can Add More boxes to Select from to enter Data in and so on. So this is the way that I would approach Creating a User Form. This is called the User Form Window that I’m working in here. So that’s what Select Supplier Form does. Let’s see what happens if we actually use it, try to Run it. So we Close that. Now let’s find the Code that Runs it. Now the Code to actually Run that User Form all ready exists and it’s in this Module in the Global Template. So if I go to Module 3, Open it up, there is a Sub and an End Sub and the Sub is called “Auto Wizard” and it’s got a single Command in it and the single Command says, “Select Supplier Form.show,” which basically means show the Select Supplier Form. And if I ran this Code now, this Macro which is called “Auto Wizard,” it would show the Select Supplier Form. So let’s actually do that. Well how do we Run a Macro? How do we Run this Code? The VBE has a conventional type of Menu system. One of the options there is Run. If I click on Run, the top Command is Run Sub/User Form. So click on Run Sub and what happens when I do Run Sub is the View goes back to my project and I see this Select Supplier Form that I saw just now. There’s that list of Suppliers that I was talking about, which I can choose from, and there’s the button we put on that doesn’t do anything. You can click it and nothing happens. But I know that if I click the Next button it will hide the Form. So let’s click that now, click Next. There you are, the Form has been hidden.

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So there we are. We have a Macro called Auto Wizard. It’s got one line of Code in it. That one line of Code causes a Form to be shown to the User and within the Form there is some more Code that will hide the Form again and that pretty much in a nutshell explains one of the basic types of Macro Coding Functions, which is to Show and Hide Forms. To Show things to Users to give them information and then to Hide whatever mechanism you’ve used to give it to them. Now finally in this section I’m going to do just one or two other very quick things, which are actually very important. One of them is so far we’ve been looking at Code that’s been written or Recorded. How can we Edit it? How can we change it? Well let’s use this as an example. If I position the cursor at the end of the line that says Sub Auto Wizard and press the Enter key, press the single apostrophe, I’ll put a space, and then put in a description here. Note that although I put an apostrophe to make this the first character on the line, which is actually the Comment character, it doesn’t show up in green yet. And the reason is that Microsoft Project doesn’t try to do anything with a line of Code until you’ve finished it and you’ve gone to another line. So it’s not until I press the Enter key at the end that it looks at what I’ve just typed and says, “What is that?” Now it recognizes that the first character on the line, well in fact, the first character in the line doesn’t have to be at the beginning of the line, it could be half-way along, but it’s the first non-space character on the line. It sees that and it says, “This is a Comment.” It colors it green; it ignores the rest of it. I’m now on the next line and I could, for instance, type a Command here. And that’s exactly what I’m going to do. But I’m going to do this with a slight difference in that I’m going to type the Command wrongly. What I’ll do is I’ll press the Tab key for Alignment purposes. It doesn’t really matter, but Alignment, and I’m just going to do the same thing that it says below, but with a mistake in it. So almost the same Command but it’s got an error. Obviously I have to get the name of that form exactly right for it to be able to show it. Press Enter again. We’re fine, but watch what happens when I click on Run. When I Run, I get an Error message and the Error message is Run Time Error 424 Object Required, which as usual is a fairly cryptic message which I may look at and wonder what on Earth is that all about? So I’ve been told there’s something wrong without really telling me much about what is wrong. That’s where this little button here comes in, Debug. And Debug will point at the line that’s wrong at least and I can look at that and say, “Well what’s wrong with it?” Well, I can see what’s wrong with it. I’ve misspelled. If I spell it correctly then when I try to Run again, it will work absolutely fine. I can click on Continue and its fine. © Copyright 2008-2012 Simon Sez IT, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

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So in this section we’ve seen some Macro Code; we’ve even made some changes to some Macro Code. In the next section, we’re going to start getting into some detail of how to write our own Macro Code to achieve all sorts of different things in Microsoft Project. So, I’ll see you then.

© Copyright 2008-2012 Simon Sez IT, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

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Video: Detailed Codes Toby: Hello and welcome to the third section on Macros and Programming in Microsoft Project 2010 Advanced. In the last section, we started looking at the Code in some of the Macros we created and the first thing I want to do in this section is to look at the organization of this Code. You’ve already seen in the Project Explorer on the left the Tree structures that contain all of the objects associated with Macros and Programming in Project 2010. The Project Global is up here. The current project is here. What I’d like to do now is to go back into our normal view of a project and look at how this relates to what’s in the Organizer. Now let’s just recap first. In the Global Template we have the form Select Supplier Form and then amongst the modules we have available, Module 3 in the Global Template contains the Auto Wizard Macro that we put the comment in just now and Module 2, in the current project, contains Favorite View which was the Macro we Recorded. So let’s Close the VBE, back into View, Open up the Organizer, and let’s look first at the Modules Option, which is here. Now the Modules Option contains exactly the same list of things in the Global Template, as you can see 3 Modules and the Form and in the current project, 2 Modules and these Modules will contain the Subroutines, the Macros that we saw before. So that pretty much agrees with that. You can move things around in a number of different ways. So, for instance, if I Selected Select Supplier Form and Copied it from Global into the ACME Proposed Implementation, Close, Close this, back into Macros, back into Edit. I can now see that I’ve got the Form in both of my projects. And in fact instead of using the Organizer, you can move these things around. So, for instance, if I wanted this Module 3 in the project, I could click it, drag it, and just drop it in there. It does make a Copy. It doesn’t Cut and Paste. Now in this section, I’m going to concentrate on creating new Code. But before I do I’d like to look at our Sub Favorite View again, the Macro we Recorded because it’s got four lines, two comment lines and then four lines of actual Code commands and these will largely be a mystery to you in terms of what they actually do. Now there are two questions here. One of them is, “How do you find out what these do?” And perhaps more importantly, “If you want to do something, how do you find out which command does it?”

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Now let’s start with the question of how do you find out what these do? Well the answer to that is another window within VBE called the Object Browser.

And let’s take this particular

command here View Apply. If we go to the View Menu here within VBE and click on Object Browser, it brings up the Object Browser which is actually a structured system for looking through all of the available Commands, Objects, what are called Methods and I’ll come back to Methods in a little while, properties of things and so on. And within those if you wanted to find a particular one, let’s suppose you wanted to find what View Apply does, I’ve got View Apply selected, in the libraries do a Search and what will happen is it will come up with a reference to the View Apply. Now the little sort of icon there denotes this is a Method and the Method means it’s a doing thing. It means it’s something that does. Applying a View is a thing that you do and View Apply, if I then think, “Well what is that? What does View Apply actually do?” If I right click on that and click on Help, what it’ll do is it will go into the Help from office.com, if I’m online, and it will tell me what the View Apply Method does. It applies a view to the active window. It has a syntax statement and a list of parameters. There are three parameters. It says what’s the name, which is optional. This is the name of the view to Display in the active window. A Single Pane optional, true if an existing split is removed in the active window displays a Single Pane, the Default is false, and Toggle true if the active window switches from one pane to two panes or from two to one. Now that may sound a bit sort of higgly-biggly to you, but just bear in mind the last two parameters, that’s the Single Pane and the Toggle, are not specified in our particular statement in our Macro. I’ll point that out to you when we get back to it. So only the first one is specified, that is the name of the view to display. So let me just Close the Help. I’m going to Close the Object Browser for now, look back at this statement. View Apply, that’s the statement, and then there’s our one perimeter, what’s the name of the view? It’s Task Usage. If in fact I had put after this, True, and then maybe even another True, that would have caused it either split or to Toggle between one pane and two panes. Now I didn’t specify either of those, although I could have done, and that’s basically how you can find out what any one of these commands does. So the next question is, “What about the opposite question?” Supposing you want to do something and you don’t know which Command to use. There are literally hundreds and hundreds of Commands in Microsoft Project VBA and you can’t possibly work out, particularly in the early stages of writing Code, which one to use for every purpose. Where there are two © Copyright 2008-2012 Simon Sez IT, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

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answers to that question. One answer is that over time you will build up a knowledge of these things. So, there’s nothing better than experience in terms of finding out what Command to use. But in the early stages the more helpful answer is to say, “You can do exactly what we did with Favorite View.” Even if you’re writing a Macro, which is actually quite long and complicated, if you have a particular thing that you don’t know how to do a good option almost always is to Record yourself doing it using the Macro Recorder; just that one part of the process you’re following, and the Macro Recorder will actually write the statements for you in a little Macro that you record and you could perhaps pluck that one line out and say, “Ah that’s how I do that thing.” And you can Copy it into your Macro, perhaps adjusting the parameters in terms of doing exactly what you want to do. So, I’m going to show you a little demo of that now. Let’s suppose we want to write our first Macro from scratch and we really are going to make it about the world’s simplest Macro. What we’re going to do is write a Macro which will Apply the Resource Usage View. So we’re going to take this line which says View Apply. We already worked out what that does, but we’re going to change it to do Resource Usage and we’re going to make it into its own Macro. Okay, so what I’m going to do is I’m going to Copy that one line and I’m going to create a new Macro. Now I could actually put the Subroutine right with this one in the same module if I wanted to, but I’m going to put it in a separate module. I’ve got Module 1 here which is empty and I’m going to actually type the Subroutine in there. So let’s give it a name first. I type Sub. I’m going to call it TA Resource Usage View, put a couple of brackets in. Project 2010 automatically puts in my End-Sub statement for me, just to be helpful. Now let me Paste in the Command I just Copied. I could maybe put a little Comment in there. The Comment doesn’t have to be right at the beginning of the line as long as it begins with a quote. So, Apply Resource Usage View, and then I’m going to change the name of the View to Resource Usage. And what we could do now is to actually run this routine. And what happens when Microsoft Project runs a Subroutine like this one is it first of all has to Compile it and then it actually executes it. Now Compiling involves changing this Code, which is what’s called Source Code. It’s in a language that humans can understand. Obviously it’s very structured and some of the terminology looks a little strange, but we can basically read what it says. What your computer has to execute is something called Machine Code and what Compiling does is to turn this Source © Copyright 2008-2012 Simon Sez IT, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

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Code into Machine Code. Now, when it’s doing that if it finds any syntactic errors in what you’ve written or certain other types of error, it will not go ahead and run this Subroutine. What we can do is to actually Compile it first. We can actually say it’s like a sort of test run if you like. Just have a look at this for me, Compile it and make sure it makes good Machine Code. And to Compile it we use the Debug option on the Menu and the top command under Debug is Compile VBA Project. And if I click on Compile VBA Project and I don’t get any error messages, that means that this Subroutine actually Compiles okay, which is the important first step in running a Macro. So let’s actually try to run it now. Click on Run, as before, Run Sub or User Form, and it’s now Run. Now you can’t actually see anything at the moment, but if I go back, I’ll Close the VBE and you’ll see that we have Resource Usage View. So let me just go back to Gantt Chart View and just click on Macros, View Macros. There’s our TA Resource Usage Macro. Let’s just run it now in the way we were running them before. Click Run and we’re into Resource Usage View. So that’s it, our first working hand-crafted Macro. So let me just demonstrate how to build this up. Let’s suppose we really want to go into Resource Sheet View and we want to Filter for Work Resources. So click on Macros, click on Record Macro, so we’re now Recording Macro 2, click on OK. I’m going to Select Resource Sheet View. I’m going to use the button down there. It doesn’t really make any difference as far as Macros are concerned. I’m going to Filter the Type Column to just show Work Resources, click on OK, and that’s the view I actually want to achieve. So let me stop Recording. Let me go into View Macros. There’s Macro 2. Let’s just Edit that. Now that’s my Recorded Macro. As you see, it’s got View Apply EX. The name is Resource Sheet, Apply to Code on zero. So we’ve got actually an additional perimeter and we’ve not got View Apply, we’ve got View Apply X and then the next Command actually sets the Filter to the work type. So you can actually see Criteria 1 Work. Now you could use the Object Browser to find out exactly what all of that means, but let’s suppose that I take those two lines, Copy them, and then go back into the previous Macro we had, Resource Usage View, and leave the name the same. I’m even going to leave that Command in there, but I’m going to Paste in now these additional lines that I’ve just Recorded. Now let’s do a Compile to make sure that it’s syntactically okay, which it is. Let me now Close that down. Let me go back to Gantt View again and now let me go into Macros, © Copyright 2008-2012 Simon Sez IT, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

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View Macros. Let’s find my newly modified Resource Usage View Macro. Click on Run and there we are. Now you can see by learning what the Commands are by Macro Recorder, but also knowing how to build those up in layers to make a Macro to do exactly what I want to do. You can actually use the Macro Recorder to help you to learn all of the Commands you are going to need in your Macro programs. So finally in this section, let’s go back to Macros. The Macro I used there for Recording, to find out which Commands to use, I tend to clear up as I go. So Select that and click on Delete. Now let me go back into my Resource Usage View Macro, click on Edit. Let’s see how I would find out exactly what these do. What about this one? View Apply X. Let’s view the Object Browser and View Apply X was actually one of the ones that was Selected before because when I did the Search on View Apply, View Apply has got View Apply in it. So I can call up the Help from Office online for that and when it tells me that View Apply X applies a view to the active window where the change can be one of the built-in views and can be applied to a specific pane in a spilt view. So that’s a very special case of View Apply, but again there’s a list of the parameters that are available and the Apply To is an optional perimeter that specifies where the view is applied. The view can be one of the following, it can be zero, prime, or usually the top pane, one usually the bottom for the active pane, or five the primary pane or the Time Line if it is active. So that’s a more complex View Apply option. So here I am back at my Macro and if I look at the Macro now, I know that I don’t need the Resource Usage View Apply statement because I was going to Resource Sheet. So I could Delete that. But one of the things this does illustrate quite nicely is that over time you will build up your knowledge of these various Commands and you maybe decide after a while, while View Apply X is great because it gives me a lot of flexibility if I’ve got a Split View, so maybe that’s the better option. I don’t need View Apply in this case anyway, so I can get rid of that and if I was in a Split View and I wanted to use the secondary pane, I know now that this parameter is the one that I would change to achieve that. So there we are. We’ve used Recorded statements to build up a simple Macro. In the next section, we’re actually going to start from scratch. We’re going to write some Commands that look at a particular project and we’re going to take a very quick look at what’s called the Project Object Model. So, I’ll see you then.

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Video: Creating New Macros – Part 1 Toby: Hello and welcome back to Macros in Microsoft Project 2010 Advanced. In the last section, we created a slightly more complicated Macro using Commands that we’d Recorded using the Macro Recorder. In this section, we’re going to start looking at actually crafting Macros from scratch and this is much more like Programming, but hopefully on the basis of what you’ve seen so far you’ll find it relatively straightforward to follow. And once you start writing Code in the way we’re going to in this section, the absolute power of VBA within Microsoft Project will start to become apparent to you. So, let’s start with our first hand-written Macro. Now I’m going to go into the VBE and I’m going to, it doesn’t really matter which Macro I choose here to go into the Editor, it will open that Macro, but then I can just create a new one. I can even put it in an existing Module such as that one or that one or that one or I can create a Module of its own. So if I click on Modules, I can say Insert and then I can say Module. I’ve now got a Module 4 and I can start a fresh Module, that’s pretty straightforward as well. So let me start by giving it a name. I’m going to say, I’ve got quite a long name. I called it Project Summary Task Review. You’ll see why a little bit later on. The first thing I’m going to do, I’ll just put a little Comment in there and I’ll increase the Comment as we go along. And then I’m going to put in a Command we haven’t seen yet and this is a Command that you’ll use quite a bit and it’s a simple Command whereby you give a message to the user. Now the Message Box Command has a very simple form. That’s all you need. Message Box and what you want the Message Box to say. So let’s Compile that. Let’s Run it and it’s absolutely fine. It just says, “Hello World.” Now I’m going to introduce the concept of Variables to you. Now Variables are objects in a program which can take different values. Their values can vary, hence the name Variables. And there are various types of Variable. Some Variables are numbers. So they can have values like 1 or 2 or 3 and some of them are strings. So they could have character string types of contents, like for example “Hello World” is actually a character string. And that sequence of characters, the H-E-L-L-O, space, W-O-R-L-D, I could store in a String Variable. Now when I’m using Variables within a program in VBA it’s always a good idea to declare what type the Variables are first. And the way you declare a Variable type is with a Dim Statement. In the distant past © Copyright 2008-2012 Simon Sez IT, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

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this was actually fully written out as what’s called a Dimension Statement. Dim is short for Dimension. And it basically says what type of Variable is. So let me introduce a Variable. I’m going to call it “I Count” and I’m going to say that it’s a particular type of Variable. Now as soon as I type Dim I Count, as you’ve just seen what Project does is to pop out a list of all the possible things I might type next and these things are all of the Variable types that are available in VBA and as you can see there are many, many Variable types. All sorts of Objects, Variables, all kinds of things and this one, this particular one, I just want to be a whole number that’s not particularly big. And that particular Variable type is Integer. Now there’s such a long list that finding Integer might take some time. If I start typing it, so if I type the “I” first what Project does is to take me to the beginning of the names with “I” at the start. If I put “N” next, ah, there we are. There’s Integer. Double click. I’ve now got Dim I Count as Integer, which means I Count is a Variable, it’s a sort of box in my program that I can stick an Integer in. So I could put 1 or 2 or 3 in there, but I couldn’t put 7.9 in there and I couldn’t put Hello World in there. Now having declared I Count as an Integer, I can now Print out its value. But of course it hasn’t got a Value. Why don’t I say, I Count equals five. That actually gives I Count a Value of five. And what I’m now going to do is to Print out with Message Box what the Value of I Count is. So let’s Compile that and let’s Run it. Hello World is still there, five is the Value of I Count, and there we are. That’s my Macro Run. Now I think it’s time to say goodbye to the Message Box saying Hello World so I’m going to just Delete that one out and instead of setting I Count to five, I’m going to get I Count to go through a sequence of Values. I’m going to create what in programming terms is called a Loop. There are various ways of doing Loops in VBA in Microsoft Project. I’m going to use a very straightforward way and what I do for this is I have a pair of statements. The first statement says, “For” and it’s pretty plain English in a way. It says, “For I Count equals one, two,” let’s say “five.” And then the end, the end of this Loop will actually say, “Next I Count.” Now what that structure does, it’s a Loop structure, is it says, “I want you to go through with I Count starting at one and going up to five.” By Default that assumes steps of one, but you could actually specify a different step; so in steps of two, for instance. You can also count backwards by doing steps of say minus one and it says, “For I Count taking individual unit steps from one to five, do whatever happens until you get to the next statement. When you get to the next statement increment I Count.” So it starts with I Count at one, does whatever I’ve put in the © Copyright 2008-2012 Simon Sez IT, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

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middle there, which at the moment is nothing, it’s empty. Gets to I Count, it says, “Oh let’s do two.” It does it with two, does it with three, does it with four, does it with five, and then stops. So let’s see that work. Let’s take out the I Count equals five and let’s put the Message Box statement in the middle there. Now by convention and in order to make these things easier to understand, it’s a good idea to indent things that are inside a Loop. So you can see everything that’s inside this what’s called a Fornix Loop. Now I can check my syntax by doing a Compile, which is fine. Now let’s do a Run and see what happens. One, two, three, four, five. Okay. That’s absolutely fine. Now at this stage you may be wondering what this has got to do with Microsoft Project. That is probably a good question. So let’s now change this routine just a little bit. I’ve got a Variable type here, an Object Variable I Count which is an Integer. I’m going to declare a new and different Object. And I’m going to once again type Dim. This time I’m going to call the Object TSK Temp. Now TSK Temp is not going to be a Variable that holds an Integer. It’s going to be a Variable that corresponds to a Task in my project. And the type of this Variable is not Integer. If I type the “T” first and then “A,” “S.”, the type of the Variable is Task. And what I can say is I have now a Variable called TSK Temp and it’s a Task. It’s going to correspond to a Task in my project. And instead of doing For I Count equals one to five, I’m going to put “For each TSK Temp in;” I’m actually going to Loop through all of the Tasks in my project. Now my project is, it’s actually got a name, but whatever one I’m working on at the moment is actually called Active Project. And the Active Project has a collection associated with it, which is a collection of all its Tasks. And this is referred to as Tasks. Again, Project 2010 VBA helps me and it says, “For each TSK Temp this is a Variable that’s going to hold the details of a Task in the collection of all the Tasks in my project.” And then the next statement, instead of I Count, will be TSK Temp. Now before we move onto the next stage and actually put something in here related to the Tasks in my project, we need to cover one other very important factor. So let me just Close this down for the moment and go back to the project. And if I step through all the Tasks in this project right from number one, right through to the last one, number 26 with the Loop that you’ve just seen, I would actually run into a problem. And the problem is the blank rows because although the blank rows help me to read my project quite easily, as far as Projects concerned they are © Copyright 2008-2012 Simon Sez IT, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

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nothing. So if in my Loop I was to actually just step through all of these I would find various entries that are empty and they would cause me a problem. Now there’s a standard way of getting round that in Project and that’s that as we go through each of the Tasks, even the completely nothing ones, the empty ones, then I can check to make sure that I’m not dealing with an empty Task before I try to do anything. So let’s go back into my Macro. There it is, Project Summary Task Review, Edit in there, and what I’m going to do instead of the Message Box I Count statement, I’m going to put in a Conditional statement. Now what this Conditional statement says is this, “If TSK Temp is nothing then.”

Now like the Loop statements a

Conditional statement has a beginning and an end. It’s got an “if” and an “end if.” And what it says is, “If this is True, if Task Temp is nothing then do something.” And then the “end if” says, “Right that’s it. This Condition no longer applies, just do it whatever.” Now if I put that in the middle, that would say, let’s do a bit more indentation there just to help a bit. For each Task in my project, right down to the next Loop, if this is True, if the Task is empty Display the Message I Count. Well why don’t I say it’s empty. But if it’s not empty and I get to that with an Else statement, do something else. Now there’s something else I’m going to do is this. Again Message Box, but I’m going to use TSK Temp, dot. Now the Dot after a Task will let me see one of the properties of the Task. Now the properties, there are again dozens and dozens of them. What about if I ask for the name of the Task? So there we are. This has got quite a bit more complicated now, but let’s just go through it again. For each Task in my project, if the Task is empty, which is nothing, Display the message Empty. If it isn’t empty, so it’s got something in it, Display the name of the Task; so TSK Temp dot name. TSK Temp is an Object and name is a Property of that Object. I could, of course, Display other Properties of the Object apart from the name. So let’s do a Compile and then let’s Run it and see what happens. So hang onto your hat, click on Run. There we are. We start with Empty. If you look at the rows of the project you can see as we go down.

Tendering Process Contract, Empty,

Requirements, Requirements Definition, and so on. Now that’s a very important Loop because once you get into VBA Programmer for Microsoft Project one of the things you do a lot of the time is to Loop through all of the Tasks in your project. Perhaps check it if it’s a certain Condition applies or Applying some sort of rule or constraint or even a bit of Calculation or something like that. So having seen how to Loop through, in the next section we’re going to finish off our quick run through Macro Programming in Microsoft Project 2010 by looking at © Copyright 2008-2012 Simon Sez IT, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

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actually doing one or two things as we Loop through a project. So, I’ll see you in the next section.

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Video: Creating New Macros – Part 2 Toby: Hello and welcome to this last section on Macros and Programming in Microsoft Project 2010 Advanced. We’ve seen now quite a few of the tools and techniques we’re going to need in Programming and for one final example I’m going to take what we used in the last section and develop it a little bit further to actually update something in a project. Now I’m going to stick with the ACME Proposed Implementation project, but this time I’m going to look at Resources. Now on this occasion if I Open up the Resource Sheet, so go into the Resource Sheet. As you know we have a number of Resources that we use on this project, a mix of Work, Cost, and Materials. What I’m going to do for the Work Resource, this is mostly the named individual but I’ve also got Generic Work Resource here, is to say that I’m going to start implementing a system of over-time and I’m going to give everybody initially an over-time that’s the same as their standard rate. Now I don’t want to have to go through here and type in the same figure in each of these. Obviously if a half a dozen Resources it wouldn’t take me very long, but maybe if I had several thousand I wouldn’t much fancy doing that.

So what I want to do is to

Programmatically set each person’s over-time rate at the same as their standard rate, just as a starting point. Now note that some of these Resources, although they’re people, they’re external people, we don’t have a standard rate. So their over-time rate will be zero, the same as their standard rate and also we’ve got some Resources here that aren’t Work. We’ve got Cost Resources and Material Resources as well. So we need to only Apply this to Work Resources, although if they’re external it doesn’t really matter because their normal rates of zero will become their over-time rate of zero. So that’s basically the business scenario, the outline of what we’re trying to do. So let’s go back into Macros. No matter which one we choose to Edit, one in the current project is good. Let’s go for the Project Summary Task Review one, the one we were looking at before and let’s write the new one immediately underneath it.

Now I’m going to call the new

Subroutine Sub, I’m going to call it “Set Over-time Rate.” And I’m going to put in a Comment. And this time what I’m going to do is to set up a Resource type Object, a Resource Variable, and it’s going to be RES Temp and its type are ES, Resource. So RES Temp is my Resource Object and you might be able to guess the next bit; “For each RES Temp in active project, dot, RES”, oh

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not quite. Let’s go down a little bit farther, there we are, Resources, and then “Next RES Temp.” I hope you’re with me so far. So what this basically is going to do is to Loop me through all of the Resources in my project. Now one of the thing important things is that I only should work on Work Resources. So I’m going to put an “if” statement that says, “If this is a Work Resource I’m going to do something. If it isn’t I’m not.” Now, again, Project 2010 will help me with this. So first of all let’s open up inside the Fornix Loop, indent, if, now the type of Resource is actually Type. As I type RES Temp, Project 2010 knows that RES Temp is a Resource because I’ve told it in the Dim statement that it is. So when I then hit the full stop it offers me the list of available Properties and Methods for a Resource. I know its Type, so I start typing and I get “TY,” type as far as that. Now you might say, “Well how do I say if it’s a Work Resource?” If I put in space equals and actually Project 2010 helps me there as well because it tells me what the three possible values I can specify are. Now it used Codes for those. For reasons I won’t go into now, but we can see that the three possible things I could put here are Cost, Material, and Work. So great, I’ll have Work, thank you. I put in a “then” and then I Close that Conditional construct with an “end if.” Now basically if something isn’t of Type Work, nothing’s going to happen to it. I’m just going to completely ignore it. If it is of Type Work then I’m going to do something. And the thing that I’m going to do is to set the over-time rate equal to the standard rate. Now this really revolves around understanding the way that Assignment Statements work. Assignment Statements are pretty much the commonest type of actual doing statement in VBA. So all I’d have to do this is RES Temp dot, now I’m going to specify the thing that’s going to receive a Value. And the thing that’s going to receive a Value is the over-time rate. So, if I click an “O” and a “V,” there you are, there’s over-time rate. Let me double click it and I’m going to set it equal to RES Temp dot standard rate. So that’s, oh there we are, that’s standard rate. That’s great. There we are. So, if this is a Work Resource, store the Value of the standard rate, stick that number into that Property of the Resource. So the over-time rate becomes equal to the standard rate. Now I can do a little Compilation to make sure that that’s syntactically fine, which it is. It’s set over-time rate. I’m going to try to Run it now. So click on Run and it will have gone through, note there’s no Message Box messages in there now. So I won’t actually necessarily see anything happening, but if I Minimize or Close the VB Editor, let’s have a look now at our Resource Sheet. And look at that, every one of those has got © Copyright 2008-2012 Simon Sez IT, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

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an over-time rate that is equal to the standard rate and that was done without any typing into these fields by me at all; all done programmatically. Now if you’ve not done any Programming before I hope that the last few sections have introduced you to some of the ideas and perhaps given you a bit of an appetite to find out more about it. You can use the Record Macros and Playback Macros option as a pretty safe one or you can start to delve into actually hand-crafting Macros as we’ve done in the last couple of sections. That’s it on Macros for now. We’re headed towards the end of the course and we’ve just got a little bit more work to do now and we’re going to look at Import and Export. We’re going to start that in the next section and I’ll see you then.

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Chapter 9 – Importing and Exporting Video: Importing and Exporting – Basics Toby: Hello and welcome to the first of three sections on Import and Export within Microsoft Project 2010 Advanced. The facilities for Import and Export in Microsoft Project have improved considerably over the last two or three versions and some of the improvements have coincided with new functionalities such as Visual Reporting. I’m going to divide the list, look at Import and Export into three sections and in this section I’m going to look at some of the basic interoperability with other elements of the Microsoft Office Desktop Suite. So we’re going to begin with some straightforward Copy and Paste. Now clearly with so many other elements of the Office Suite available, I can’t really go through every single combination but I’m going to go through some of the main ones that you might find useful. Let’s look, for example, at this Table of Data relating to our building project and let’s try putting it into a Word document, perhaps we’re going to use this as part of a report we’re preparing in Word. Now to Select the whole of that Table, you can use the top left corner, that Selects the Table. I can Copy to the Clipboard either by using the keyboard shortcut of ControlC or by using the Copy button here.

Let me now switch into Word and then just do a

straightforward Paste in Word either using the Paste facility or using the keyboard shortcut. Now as you can see Pasted into Word that looks pretty good actually. It lays out quite well. I get all the columns in the Table and so on. Now let’s try Pasting it into a Power Point slide. Exactly the same procedure; I’ve used the keyboard shortcut and there’s my Table in the Power Point slide. Obviously I have some Formatting capabilities there within Power Point and if I were putting this in as part of a presentation, as you can see, it’s a pretty straightforward way to get that tabular type of information out of Project and into Power Point. Now one very important thing to realize about this is that what we have here is a Table in Power Point and we can actually Format it as a Table. So, for example, once it’s in Power Point I can stretch the Table out obviously. I’ve got the Table Tools, two Tabs in Power Point. A Design Tab and a Layout Tab. So go into the Design Tab, for instance, I can change the Table Style. I’ve got a whole Gallery of Table Styles there available to me. Let’s try, for instance, that one. © Copyright 2008-2012 Simon Sez IT, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

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And I can even do things like Process individual columns, so within the Layout section I could say Insert above. I could do Deletions, Split Cells, and all the normal things that I would do with a Table. That gives me full flexibility in terms of Formatting the information that’s here and the same basically is true within Word as well. And of course when it comes to interoperability within the Microsoft Office Suite, two of the other components of the Suite have a lot to offer as well. Let’s start with Excel. If I Paste the Data we’ve just Copied into Excel, then I get a fully operational worksheet content set where I can perform all of the powerful array of functions that’s available to me in Excel.

Now

interestingly if you pursue the Project VBA Programming that we started off in the last few sections, you can actually call Excel functions from Programs within Project. I’m obviously not going to cover that on that course because it’s getting a little bit advanced in terms of programming in itself, but another good option, particularly if you want to do some complex reporting or some more complex calculations is to just take the data from your project, drop it into Excel, and do what you need to do in Excel. Similarly in Microsoft Access, if I do Create Table, and then do a Paste, all of the Data are Pasted in as Records in a new Table, given a Default name. Some of the Column Headings get a little bit confused, but I’ve basically got the Data there and I could actually populate a Table in a Microsoft Access Database in exactly that way. So in a similar way, we could actually Copy and Paste the same sort of information into One Note or into an Outlook email. So it’s a pretty flexible way of doing things, particularly with tabular information. With Graphical information it’s a little bit more variable because not all of the other components are that well suited to Graphical information. Let’s just look at one very quick example. If I say go into Resource Graph View there’s a Resource Graph. Let’s find one of the people used there, Kim Stevens. There’s a Resource Graph for Kim Stevens showing 100% usage a lot of the time. If I actually Copy this Resource Graph using the Copy facility on the Ribbon and then go into Power Point, let’s see what happens if I drop that Graph onto a Power Point slide. I actually get the Graph and most of the detail is there, but the Formatting of it does become quite a bit more difficult when you’re dealing with Graphical information. So, if you’re wanting to get information from Project into one of the other Office components, say for Reporting, then the Graphical side can be a little bit trickier. You can, of course, however put © Copyright 2008-2012 Simon Sez IT, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

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the Data into say Excel and generate probably better Graphs from Excel, but it’s worth knowing that you have this quick option which does sometimes do the job. So that’s how we can get information out of Project and into those other components. Let’s now look at the opposite situation. Let’s say we’ve been working in a Microsoft Excel Spreadsheet, just jotting some Tasks to go into a project and we’re going to, put one more Task in there, so basically I’ve just made a list of a few Tasks with their Durations in Excel and I want to create a Microsoft Project plan using these Tasks. Well all I need to do is to Copy the information I’ve got. I’ve rather conveniently got it in two simple columns, one is the list of the Tasks, second column is the list of their Durations; so my estimates of them. If I just Copy that information in the usual way and then go into a new project, then Select the Task Name Column, the top entry, do a Paste. What it will actually do is create a project for me. Now there are no dependencies, which I’d have to put in to make this building project have a proper shape to it and I haven’t specified things like when the projects going to start. I haven’t looked at any Resources. But if I’ve got some jotted notes or some sequence of steps in an Excel Spreadsheet as I had just then, it’s a very straight forward way of getting started in Microsoft Project with that list of Tasks. Similarly I may have another source for a list of Resources, say a staff or employees list that I can use to start off a Resource Sheet. And there’s one other point to note in relation to this. You can actually do pretty much the same thing from a list of Tasks in Microsoft Outlook. So, again, you can Copy the basic information into a suitable Table View in Microsoft Project and that can be another excellent way of getting started on a project once you’ve actually enumerated some of the Tasks within Outlook. So we’ve seen some pretty straightforward ways of getting Data from Project into the other components of the Office Suite and in fact other pieces of software that support Copy and Paste, which is pretty much all Windows software and a lot of other software besides. And we’ve seen some ways of getting Project type information from Excel or from Outlook into Microsoft Project with a bit of Copy and Paste as well. There’s one other option to look at here, which associated with Visual Reporting. Let me go back to the Visual Reports, that’s on the Project Tab, Visual Reports. I mentioned OLAP and OLAP or Online Analytical Processing is the basic data structure approach to putting together the data in a format that enables this very flexible Visual Reporting. And when Microsoft Project is creating Visual Reports it actually creates two © Copyright 2008-2012 Simon Sez IT, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

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repositories of Data. It creates a thing called an OLAP Cube and it creates a temporary Access Database. So if I were to run something like the Baseline Cost Report here it would create those for me; and OLAP Cube and a temporary Access Database. And these contain all of the Data I’ve selected to run that particular type of Visual Report. However, when Project has finished with that Visual Report, it Deletes those two. Now there is an option, right down the bottom of this Create Report Dialog here to Save that Data. So I can actually make the OLAP Cube available to other software and I can also Save that Access Database and use it for Reporting or other analysis myself. So let’s go through that basic process. If you select Save Data on the Create Report Dialog, you come up with the Visual Reports Save Reporting Data Dialog. Now first of all it lets me choose which of the Reports I want to Save the Data for, because obviously what’s included in each Report varies as we saw earlier on. So let’s stick with Task Usage and if I want to Customize the selection of Fields, I can call up that Field Picker that we saw before. Now the list of available Fields, as you know, is very long and the selected Fields are the ones that Project normally uses for Task Usage Reports. But I can add to that or I can remove some. Bear in mind that the more Fields you have in the selection here, the slower Reporting will generally be. And then it’s also possible for you to include some of your Custom Fields if you want them and if you’re planning to do some exterior Reporting, some of your own, you may need some of the Custom Fields that you’ve created. So, when you’ve finalized the list of Fields that you want included, you click OK to confirm; I’m just going to Cancel because I haven’t changed anything. And then you have two options, you can Save the Cube and/or you can Save the Database. Now Save Cube is pretty straightforward. Now the standard extension for an OLAP Cube is a .cub file and you can choose a location, you can give it a name. The Default here is Task Usage, click Save, and so on. I’m going to Cancel. And then similarly, to Save a Microsoft Access Database that contains all the Reporting Data for the active project, click Save Database. Now you then get a Microsoft Access Database with all of this Data in it, with all the necessary linkages and relationship, and you can take that away do whatever Reporting on it you want from there. Again, Save Database would give you an .mdb file extension. Now bear in mind, it Defaults to a file name here corresponding to the project, so you’d actually want to put in an .mdb in here to make sure you remember it’s a Microsoft Access Database. You’d click Save As, click Cancel on this occasion.

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And there you are, you can Save an OLAP Cube or an Access Database or both to do your Reporting on. So in this section we’ve looked at several ways of getting information out of Project and a few ways of getting information into it. In the next section, we’re going to look at a very specific and very common and popular way of Exporting Data to Microsoft Excel which is very often where we want to put it for all sorts of reasons. So, I’ll see you then.

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Video: Export Projects & Customizing Exports Toby: Hello and welcome to this second section on Import and Export in Microsoft Project 2010 Advanced. Traditionally one of the very popular ways of Exporting Project Data has been to Export it to Microsoft Excel where various types of operation can be performed on it, including very sophisticated Reporting as well as obviously the use of the extensive range of formulas, functions, and Programming capabilities within Microsoft Excel. Now in more recent versions of Project many of those advantages have actually been moved into Project itself, but it’s still very useful on many occasions to be able to get your Data in a fairly comprehensive way into Excel. And that’s what we’re going to look at in this section. Now we’re going to be looking, essentially, at Exporting Data from Project into Excel 2010. You may need to Export into an older format or you may even need to Export into a Text or .csv Format.

If you need to be able to cope with those legacy Formats, you need to set the

appropriate setting in Microsoft Project 2010. So, you go into Backstage View, go into Options, choose Trust Center, then Trust Center Settings, and then Legacy Formats. Mine is set at Do not Open Save File with Legacy or non-Default File Formats in Project, so that won’t really cater for the old ones. You can either say Allow Loading or you can say Prompt when Loading which will obviously give you the option of accepting a Legacy or non-Default File Formats. I’ll set this at Prompt for now and just Select OK to Save that setting. So let’s now see about how we get this project into Microsoft Excel. Well, go to Backstage View, I’m working on the building project by the way. Click on Save As and in the Save As the normal Default type of course is Project, but what happens if I choose a type of Excel. If I choose Excel Workbook I’m going to use the current Format, the .xlsx format, if I’m using one of the older ones or one of these Text or .csv files, that’s where the option we just looked at Setting the Trust Center to accept Legacy Formats comes in. If I go for Excel Workbook now, .xlsx, that gives me a Default File name of Greendale Plot 03 which is the project name .xlsx and if I click on Save what happens is it brings up the Project Export Wizard. And what the Project Export Wizard does is to map the Fields in Project to the appropriate Export Format. And then you can verify or Edit the results to make sure that you’re happy with the Data that you’re going to get out of Project and into Excel.

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So click on Next and now I’m given a choice of either using a Project Excel Template which is basically a standard mapping from Microsoft Project into Microsoft Excel, or the choice of Selecting the Data myself. On this occasion let’s choose a Project Excel Template and just see how that works. Once I’ve Selected Project Excel Template I click on Finish and a standard mapping is performed. If I now look at the Excel File that’s generated, you’ll see what it’s produced. So here is that standard file, Greendale Plot 03.xlsx and you have an Excel Workbook with a number of sheets at the bottom, a Task Table sheet, a Resource Table sheet, and an Assignment Table sheet. If we look at the Task Table first, we can see Column A has the IDs, Column B says whether the Tasks Active. Task Mode, Auto-schedule or Manually Scheduled, Task Name, and so on. And then Selected standard information about each Task. Summary Tasks have totals in days that reflect the mix of individual Tasks within the Summary Tasks and then with each of them we have a Start, Finish, Predecessors, and so on. If I go down to the Resource Table sheet, again, a list of all the Resources in my project. As you know, this is a pretty long list of Resources in my building project. And then the third sheet has the Assignments. So, this gives me a list of Tasks and Resource Names, Percent Complete, Work, Units, and so on. So basically it’s transformed all of the Selected Data according to a standard Template from Microsoft Project into Microsoft Excel. So that’s it if you like the easy option for transferring information out of Project and into Excel. So now let’s look at the option of Customizing that Export. So, again, File, Save As, and this time we’re going to Save it again as an .xlsx and let’s call it 03A on this occasion, to draw distinction. Click on Save. The Wizard starts again, click on Next, and this time we’ll go for Selected Data. We’re now given an important choice to make. We can either create a new Map, i.e., a new mapping from Project into Excel or we can use an existing Map. Now the existing Maps basically come in two types. Microsoft Project comes with some ready-made Maps, but you can also Save a Map yourself. So, for instance, if this was the first time I was doing this particular Export from my building project to Excel where I was going to do some more processing on the Data for my building project, I could Save the Map I produce in this exercise and use it again next time. If I stick with the Selection of Use Existing Map and click on Next, you’ll see the © Copyright 2008-2012 Simon Sez IT, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

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standard Maps that Project 2010 provides. Most of them will have names which pretty much describe what they do; a who does what Report, Compare to Baseline, Cost Data by Task, and so on. Earned Value information is a use for one, so it’s a top level Task list. So if you’ve got one of those that sounds pretty much as though it’s going to do the job for you, you can choose that. Now for the purposes of this demonstration, I’m going to choose the Task and Resource Pivot Table Report as my Map selection. Click on Next and by Default when I make that Map selection, information is included on Tasks and Resources. I’m going to stick with the Default on this occasion and then there are a couple of options down here that relate to Excel. One of them is whether you want the Export to include Headers, which means that the relevant Excel Worksheets that are created will have Headers on them. And also whether to include the Assignment rows in the Output. Now both Assignments and Assignment rows are in Output. They’re both excluded here, I could include them. I could check the check boxes, but for the purposes of this demonstration we’ll stick with the Defaults. So, click on Next and we move onto a Task Mapping Dialog. Now the Task Mapping Dialog gives us a high level of control over how the project information is mapped to the Excel information. Starting at the top, a Worksheet will be created in our target Excel Workbook and the name of that, for the Task Mapping, will be Tasks. We can Select a Filter here to say which Tasks are going to be included in this Mapping. Currently it’s All Tasks. We could Apply a Filter such as, for instance, Critical Tasks or Late Tasks. Let’s include All Tasks. Then we have a list of the Microsoft Project Fields and the name of the Excel Field we’re going to Map them to. Now, strictly speaking, names of these Fields are really going to be the Headings on the columns on the Excel Worksheet. And in fact, the section at the bottom here, the Preview section, shows us this mapping. So, what’s called Resource Space Group as a project Field will be Resource_Group in Excel, Resource Names is Resource_Name, Name is Task_Name and so on. And we can also see a Preview of the sort of Data that will appear. So here we’ve got Prepare, Duration 5 days and so on. Now there is a fixed selection of Data items from Microsoft Project that go in here and we can in fact add others if we want to. Click on the drop down here, select another item like Actual Start, Microsoft Project proposes an Excel Field for it and with all of these, both the ones you start with and the ones you may choose to add, the Data Type is named here. Now if you actually want all the information, you can actually do an © Copyright 2008-2012 Simon Sez IT, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

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Add All. And if you just want to clear it all and start again, you can do a Clear All. You can Insert rows, you can Delete rows, and so on. So by manipulating what’s in this list using the buttons, looking at the Preview, you can work out how you want to Map Task related Data from Project into the Task related Data on the Tasks Worksheet in Microsoft Excel. So having finalized our Task Mapping, I’m quite happy with that, we now click Next, and what we get next is a Resource Mapping Dialog. Now pretty much all the same principles apply except to Resource related Data. So we have the name of the sheet here, Resources. We have the availability of a Filter, so we can go with All Resources or we could go to just Resources of a particular type and so on. And then we have the mapping from the individual Fields, including the naming of the Fields on the Excel Worksheet and all of the same principles apply. So when we’ve completed our Resource Mapping, click on Next again. If I want to Save that Map, so if I’ve decided that I’m going to use this Mapping again, I click on Save Map, and I can Save that either as a modification of the one I started with or I could put it in with a new name. So if I wanted it specifically as a Building Map, click on Save, and then finally if I do the finish, it’ll actually generate that Workbook for me. So there we are. There’s my second Excel Workbook. I’ll open it up. It has the two sheets that I specified, with the names of Tasks and Resources. And on each of them, each of the lists with the names as Headers that I selected and all of the Data subject to Filters, etc that I specified in the Map. So as you can see, the facilities to Export Project Data to Excel are very good, very powerful, very flexible, and they really help with automation. If I’ve saved the Map here, I can use it week after week, month after month, if I need to Export the Data into Excel for Calculation or Reporting purposes. So that’s it on this section. We’ve got one more short section on Import and Export to do and I’ll see you then.

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Video: Importing Data Toby: Hello and welcome to this third and final section on Import and Export in Microsoft Project 2010 Advanced. In the last section we saw how to Export Data from Microsoft Project into Excel using a Map. I also mentioned that you can Export Data in many other Formats from Microsoft Project 2010. Now in this section, we’re going to very briefly look at the opposite of that and that is Importing Data into Microsoft Project 2010. Now you can Import into Project 2010 in virtually as many Formats as you can Output from it. And the basic approach is always the same. You specify the Type of File that you’re Importing from and then you basically define a Map for the process. Now it’s possible to Input .csv Data, Text Data, Data from .xml sources, and so on. But what we’re going to do here is to illustrate this with Importing back the Data we Exported in the last section. So I’ve got an empty project and what I’m going to do is to take the Data from the building project that’s in that .xlsx File that I Saved before. So to access the Data we’re going to Import. Go to Backstage View, select Open, and on this occasion in the Open Dialog for the File Type, which Defaults to Microsoft Project Files, I’m going to choose a different type. In this case I’m going to choose a Workbook. Now the number of options here is quite big. You’ve got .xml Format right at the bottom, .csv Files, .txt Files, and so on. And as I said just now, the basic principle is that you Select a File of the Type that contains the Data you’re going to Import and then there is usually a Mapping process which may use an existing Map or may need you to build a new one. So select let’s Excel Workbook, which is the type we’re looking for. There are two there, there’s the first one I did and then the second one. Let’s go for the first one, Open that, and the Import Wizard opens up. Now Microsoft Project looks at that Data and tries to make its own assessment of how the Fields in the Data, the .xlsx File, Map to standard Fields in Microsoft Project. So the Wizard automatically Maps the Imported Data to appropriate Fields in Project. Let’s click on Next and see what sort of job it’s going to do. If we’re aware that we all ready have a Map to use with this type of File, we can Select Use Existing Map. But let’s suppose we don’t really know anything about this Data. Let’s get Microsoft Project to create a new Map for us. Click on Next and then it says, “How do you want to Import this File? Do you want a new project?” Which is what I’m going to go for.

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“Do you want to append the Data to the active project?” So I’ve all ready got a project open, do I want to add this Data to it? This can be useful if you’re adding a number of Input Files to one master project, perhaps. Then this is a good way of adding one after the other. The third option is to merge the Data into the active project, which can also be useful, particularly when you’re trying to merge two lots of separate Data which actually don’t just follow one after the other but involve merging the two together. But I’m going to stick with that as a new project option and click on Next. Then I’m asked to Select the Types of Data that I want to Import. Now in this Input File I know that I have got Tasks and Resources and I know that the Data includes Headers at the top of the individual columns in Microsoft Excel. So click Next for that and it’s now made its attempt at Mapping the Data. Now the attempt it’s made is really a good one. If I look at the Task Mapping Dialog here, that part of the Import Wizard, at the Task Table I can see that the Excel Fields which have Headings, ID, Active Test, Task Mode, and so on, and the corresponding Microsoft Project Fields have actually been matched up very well. And looking through the Preview rows here, I can see that the Data has pretty much all fallen into the right places. Outline Level relates here to the Summary Task Outline Level and so on. So that’s a pretty good job as far as Tasks are concerned. If we go into the Resource Table, again, if I can scroll through there I can see it’s done a pretty good job of matching that up as well. And congratulations, the Import Wizard has all the information it needs. If I actually had to make a change here or if I wanted to Save this Mapping, so let’s suppose that I think that every week from now on I’m going to get a File like this, .xls Files that I’m Importing here. Then I can Save Map, give it a name, Save it in the Map area, but I’m not going to Save that Map at the moment, I’m just going to click on Finish. And what happens is, well, it gives me a warning. “The Start of Task 9, set out of Greendale Plot 03 is before the project starts.” Now that’s not surprising because it basically creates a new empty project which will Default to have a Start Date of today and the Project Information I’m Importing is from a project that starts before today. So, I could change the project Start Date, but I can actually just say to it, “Well carry on in Import anyway and I’ll adjust the Start Date later if I need to.” So click on OK and there we are. There is my newly created project. It Defaults to the name of the .xlsx File that I’ve Imported, which of course was the name Greendale Plot 03, and in fact if I go through all of that now in a Gantt Chart to look at the information, and then perhaps just go into the Resource Sheet and have a look at the Resource Sheet for the © Copyright 2008-2012 Simon Sez IT, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

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information there, you will see that it’s done a pretty good job of Importing all of that Data back in. So let just go through that again, but just show you what would normally happen in a less neat situation. Let’s again Select an .xlsx File. Let’s choose the Greendale Plot 3A Workbook. We go into the Project Import Wizard again, click on Next. Again, I’m going to Select New Map rather than use the Map that we used for the Export. So click on New Map. I’m going to do the Import as a New Project. I’m going to assume I’m Importing Tasks and Resources. Click on Next and then what happens is it asks me to Select from the Worksheet Names that are in the Workbook. Now as you may recall we’ve got two. We’ve got Tasks and Resources. So let’s Select Tasks and then within that it tries to match every Excel Field with a corresponding Microsoft Project Field. Now if it doesn’t find a match, it says, “Not Mapped.” And we have to find the right one ourselves. Now in this one, the Resource Name is actually an abbreviation of Resource Names. So I can actually scroll down with this one, there’s no, no real doubt about this one. And if I find Resource Names down here, that’s the one I want. And what you need to do is to go through and wherever there’s a mismatch like that, identify the Field that should be used, and then the Import actually works fine. Now there is one other little Import option that a lot of people don’t realize is even there, but I think it’s well worth it because you may find this suits the way that you or your company work. If you have Tasks in Microsoft Outlook, you can actually Import some or all of those Tasks into Project directly to make the basis of a project. And particularly if you’ve categorized those Tasks in Outlook, it can be a very convenient way of putting together a set of Tasks for a project. So just for a very straightforward demonstration of that, you actually need to go to the Task Tab and on Insert if you click the drop down on Task, right at the bottom there is Import Outlook Tasks. Now what it will actually do is to look at the Outlook Task list for the current user, which is me, and identifies all of the Outlook Tasks and will actually present them in Categories. It does take a little while so I’ll click on that and then I’ll come back to you when it’s worked out what my Task list is. So Microsoft Project presents a Dialog, Import Outlook Tasks, with a list of Tasks in it in Categories, and I’ve actually created a little category here temporarily. I can Select as many of those individual Tasks as I like and then if I click on OK Microsoft Project will actually Import © Copyright 2008-2012 Simon Sez IT, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

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them as Tasks into a new project. I can then go through and set the Durations if indeed I didn’t Import the Durations from Outlook, set the Start Dates, and so on. So, that’s a really neat way of getting information from Outlook into Microsoft Project. So there we are. We pretty much covered all of the Import and Export options, particularly in relation to Microsoft Office components, but we’ve also looked at .txt. and .csv Files and these are pretty useful in terms of interfacing with non-Microsoft systems as well.

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Chapter 10 – Conclusion Video: Course Conclusion Toby: Hello and welcome back. We’ve come to the end of this course on Microsoft Project 2010 Advanced and before I say goodbye I’d just like to mention two or three things that I think it’s worth bearing in mind. One of them is that Microsoft Project 2010 is a considerable advance on earlier versions and many of the things that Microsoft are doing to Project I think are proving to be very helpful. Now it’s not without its problems, there are certain elements of it that still cause a little bit of difficulty, but the extensions to VBA, Macro Programming, and so on are very welcome and add a lot of flexibility and power to what you can do with Microsoft Project 2010, and the development of features such as Visual Reporting also, I think, really extend its capabilities. The other two areas where I think it’s worth keeping an eye open, particularly if you work in a large company perhaps where there’s a lot of Project Management to do, a lot of Project Managers working on projects where Resources are shared and information has to be shared broadly and in a number of different Formats using a number of different Media. Then the developments in Microsoft Project Server and the interface with and uses with Share Point are also extremely significant developments. So, I’d keep an eye on those if I were you and I’m really looking forward to the next version of Microsoft Project, whenever it should appear. But in the mean time my name’s Toby. I hope you’ve enjoyed this course as much as I’ve enjoyed delivering it to you and I look forward to seeing you again sometime soon. So, bye for now.

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