Tracking Actual work, and Actual costs on the Project

 

Hi,

as I promised I will write about tracking actual work and cost on the Project in MS PROJECT 2010.

In my previous blog I recorder progress for my three Tasks:

image

First I will choose the Work Table:

image

and I will get:

image

As you can see, in this Table I have work in hours which is based on formula Duration in days X Hours per day. For the Task4, Duration is 7 days, e.g. 7 days X 8 hours per day = 56 hours!

I will put 40% in the % W. complete, and I will get:

image

40% of 56 hours is 22,4 hours, and you can see this value in the Actual field, and the Remaining is 56-22,4  = 33,6 hours. I will open the Status window for the Task4:

image

and I will get:

image

Notice that Actual duration is 2,8 days, and Remaining duration is 4,2 days! Why? Because Actual work is 22.4 hours, Actual Duration is 22,4 hours / 8 hours per day = 2,8 days. And Remaining duration is Duration – Actual duration = 7 days – 2,8 days = 4,2 days.

Now suppose that you want to track Actual work in hours per Resource for each task! First you should open Task usage view:

image

and you will get:

image

Now I can double click on the resource name under each Task and I will get:

image

Here I can put:

  • Work:  How many hours are needed for the Task and Resource
  • Actual work: How many hours are already spent on this Task by particular Resource
  • % Work complete: The percentage of work completed on the Task by particular Resource
  • Remaining work: How many hours are needed to finish the work, beside Actual work on the Task by particular Resource
  • Actual start: When the Resource has started to work on this Task
  • Actual finish: When the Resource has ended (completed) with work on this Task

I will not explain how MS PROJECT 2010 calculates fields because it does it on the same way as it was described in my previous Post.

The most detailed information is to put the exact number of hours spent on the Task by the particular Resource, on a day by day basis. You can do it like this:

image

and you will get:

image

 

I manually put 4, 12 and 20 hours in days, so the Actual work is 4+12+20 hours = 36 hours, Remaining work is 56 – 36 = 20 hours, and % Work completed is 36/56 = 64%

Which method to use? The answer is simple: The most accurate! And of course, consider the time you need to fulfill all those fields!

OK! How to track Costs, or better how to put the real costs in your Project?

For Fixed cost that is easy. For example, choose the cost table in Task Usage (or any other View, for which is applicable the Cost Table):

image

and you will get:

image

Now you can change Fixed Cost, for example, from $300 to $400 in Task4. Just retype it, and you will get:

image

But what can you do with Costs for resources. They are calculate automatically. You can leave them “as is”, and let MS PROJECT 2010 to calculate those values based on price per hour, day etc. for the Resource and hours spent on the Tasks. Or  you can put all the costs manually. To do that you should set MS PROJECT 2010 up:

image

ant then:

image

Now I can put manually Actual Costs. For example notice that Task4 I have:

  • Total Cost: $22.800
  • Actual: $14.620
  • Remaining: $8.180

image

I will now put $25.000 in the Actual Cost Field and I will get:

image

As you can see, Remaining cost is same, and Total Cost is$33.180 (e.g. Actual cost + Remaining).

WATCH OUT! DO NOT USE THIS METHOD IF YOU ARE NOT 10000000% SURE WHAT YOU ARE DOING, BECAUSE YOU CAN RUIN YOUR PROJECT. You can also change the Baseline field! DO NOT DO IT! LEAVE IS AS IT IS!

I will now change my setting again to the:

image

and I those changes for the Task4 are gone:

image

In my next post I will show you, how to track Variances against planned values using different tables.

Until then,

Best Regards!

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About Nenad Trajkovski

Location: Zagreb, Croatia Occupation: Project Manager Interests: Project Management and MS PROJECT He was born in Zagreb, Croatia at 1963. After completing his college he started working on projects in different business areas (banking, manufacturing, automotive industry, distribution, oil companies, etc.) developing and implementing ERP systems into different companies. He has got a lot of experience working with people in different business processes and also possesses great knowledge in information technologies and financial services. Today he works as a business consultant, adn Project Manager in PERPETUUM MOBILE d.o.o. Zagreb. He is a regular lecturer for Project Management in MS Innovation Center in Varaždin, Logosoft Sarajevo in Bosnia and Herzegovina and SEAVUS GROUP in Skopje Macedonia. He was named the best lecturer of WINDAYS 2008 while his lecture was also voted as the best. In addition, he was in TOP 10 lecturers at the MS SINERGY 2009 and MS VISIA 2009, 2010. Shares first place as the best lecturer of KulenDays 2009 and 2010 and PMI Conference 2009 in Zagreb. He is also a regular lecturer in the MS Community. He is a Certified Accountant and a PMP (Project Manager Professional) and a PMI-RMP (Risk Manager Professional), MCP, MCT, and Microsoft Certified Technical Specialist - Microsoft Project 2010. From 01.01.2012 awarded with MVP (Microsoft Most Valuable Proffesional - Microsoft Project)!
This entry was posted in MICROSOFT PROJECT, Microsoft PRoject 2010, MS PROJECT 2010, PMI, PRoject Management and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

14 Responses to Tracking Actual work, and Actual costs on the Project

  1. web search results says:

    Pretty! This was an incredibly wonderful article.
    Thanks for providing this information.

  2. mig says:

    Hi,
    unfortunately I can not enter the exact number of hours spent on a Taks by a particular Resource in the Task Usage as described (in your example you enter manually 4, 12 and 20 hours in days, so the Actual work is 4+12+20 hours = 36) . The fields are grayed out. How can I activate them?

    Thanks
    Mig

    • Nenad Trajkovski says:

      Can you send me mpp file to nenadtrajk@gmail.com

      • mig says:

        hi,
        thanks for your fast response. During preparation of the example I found the problem. The resource assignment was not correct. It works now as expected.

        regards
        Mig

  3. Adnan Shahid says:

    Thank you so much Nenad for this nice document.

    However in my case, I am not much concerned about Task duration or Start/Finish date. My planned start/finish can be different from actual start/finish. What I am looking for once I put Actual Start/Finish date for a task (out of many task) in a project, then it will calculate and give me how much % of project have done. What I mean, the % is not based on duration but on task. Also there may be weight associated with the task.

    Is this possible in MS Project? Can you give me some light on this?

    Thanks again for your nice document and reply.

  4. Adnan says:

    Thanks, it would be gr8…:))

  5. Adnan Shahid says:

    Hi,
    I am having problem using and getting a desired output in MS project.

    In my file, there is % complete, duration, start and finish. Now as the project started,
    – I want to keep this planned start and finish date
    – Also I want to provide date of these tasks actually started or finished.
    – I also wanted to know how much of work % has completed (Not on duration but the actual work)
    How should I proceed? I think my requirement is pretty simple but I am not able to get the desired output. Appreciate if you can help.

    Thanks
    Adnan

    • Nenad Trajkovski says:

      I will write Blog Post about it in next 12 days. OK?

    • Nenad Trajkovski says:

      here is the Post http://ntrajkovski.wordpress.com/2011/06/15/ms-project-2010tracking-task-progress/
      For Actual work you should look at Work or Tracking Table! Let me know if you want further explanation!

      Regards

  6. reggie little says:

    Hi Nenad, I’ve had two courses in MS Project and read two extra books (besides the class text). No One ever mentioned the Right Click!! Your explanations are great, easy and to the point. Great job!!

  7. Kenneth Tomchuk says:

    Question about updating project actual work—why is MS Project overriding my % complete
    –all task types are fixed duration
    –set status date =1/27
    –project option = ‘edits to total task % complete will be spread to the status date’ (previously I had not checked this and found even though I entered a 100% complete, for future dated end date, when I rescheduled incomplete tasks it lowered my % complete to be consistent with finish date)
    –problem = entering a % complete =85%, MS Project overrides to 100%
    —-task has a start date of 1/13, finish of 2/5
    —-why is project overriding my entered % complete?

    • Nenad Trajkovski says:

      I have tryed to do the same thing, and everything works fine! I put Task with 16 days duration. Start date was 01/13, end det was 02/03 (beacuse 02/05 is Sunday, and status date 1/27.
      Project start date was 1/13. fixed duration.

      Can you give me more information?

  8. Lisa says:

    Have you done the “how to track Variances against planned values using different tables” post yet? I am trying to figure out how to update resource actuals, find variances from projected, and if it is worth the time and trouble in doing so to add this metric to the master schedule or not or if it will make it too complicated.

    • Nenad Trajkovski says:

      Yes, I did! Here is the Link: http://ntrajkovski.wordpress.com/2011/12/29/tracking-the-project-progress-with-using-different-tables/. If you need some further information, don’t hesitate, just give me an email!

      Regards,

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