Task Calendar in MS PROJECT 2016 – the right way to use it

Hi,

as we all know, there are three types of Calendars in MS PROJECT 2016: Base Calendars, Resource Calendars and Task Calendars. they are prioritized in that order (from low to high importance), which means that Task Calendar has  the highest priority. When we are talking about Resource Calendars, we all know why and when to use it. For example, if 12 resources has a common days off, or working hours, we will create Resource Calendar and assign it to those resources. But why to use Task Calendar? Let’s suppose that we have few (or many) Tasks that should be, for example, done in a certain location. And that this location is for some reason available to work at only from Monday to Wednesday, and that it can not be work at Thursday and Friday. for those Task we will have to create Task calendar and Assign it to those, specific Tasks.

Let’s go.  I will first create a new Project:

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For  Special Tasks I will create separate Calendar, and I will call it MON-WEN:

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and then:

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and then:

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Finally I will assign this Calendar to the Special Task, and I will get:

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Finally I will get:

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As you can see in Information column I have a notice that those Tasks has specific calendar, and Finish date is moved.

Now let’s suppose that we have John as Resource who is able to work only at Thursday and Friday:

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What will happened if I try to assign John to the Special al Task?

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As you can see, I can not do it. Why? Because John is supposed to work at Thursday and Friday, and Task should be worked on only at Monday to Wednesday. If I now change the option mentioned above, I will get:

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and:

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As you can see, John is now allocated to this Task, but it is show as over allocated, because this is conflict with his Calendar. So he will work to this Task, even he is not supposed to. Now, finally, in this example we should as ourselves a question: “But what if John is really not available from Monday to Wednesday?”.  Well in this situation you will not assign it to the Task. So what are our options? Only two of them. Find another resource who will be available to work from Monday to Wednesday on those Tasks, or change Task Calendar (so make this location available on Thursdays and Fridays). If those are not options, then you are not going to be able to do the Task. As simple as that. Remember, MS Project is a tool. Real life is something else.

Posted in Micsrosoft Project 2016, MS PROJECT 2016, PMI, PRoject Management | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Move vs Update Tasks in MS PROJECT 2016

Hi,

in my last post I wrote about differences between Move and Update options in MS PROJECT 2016 on the Project Level, Now it is time to explain those two different options on the Task level.

First, I will create simple Project:

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As you can see, I make Task 1, as 50% completed.

Now suppose that for some reason I have to move Task 2 for 5 days (let’s say that we are building the wall, and we fins out that brick are not going to be available as we planned, but 5 days latter, so I have to move Task 2 5 days in the future:

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and:

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and I will get:

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As you can see, Task 2 has a new Starting date, and constraint: “Start No Earlier Than”.

Now look again at the first picture in this post. And let’s say that today is Friday, 13.01.2017., and the only work done is those 50% for Task 1. And again, If you are not the Magician, you will not be able to complete the work in the Past. So, you must update the Schedule to reflect real situation. First of all you should set status date as I will (in my example, Friday 13.01.2017):

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Finally, I will Update my Tasks:

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and I will get:

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So, Move Option is to push Task back and forth from some reasons, and Update Option is for align selected Task with actual Schedule, e.g. to align finished and unfinished Tasks, and their parts to the real life situation (e.g. Status Date). Basically you can get, more or less, the same result with both Options, but my advice is always: Use features for what they are planned for.

Regards!

Posted in MICROSOFT PROJECT, MS PROJECT 2016, PMI, PRoject Management | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Move vs Update Project in MS PROJECT 2016

Hi,

as a first post for this year I will answer to the question from my Blog reader: “Please advise on when to use Move vs Update Project to reschedule incomplete tasks after a specified date?”

There is a huge difference between this two options in MS PROJECT 2016.

First, I will show you Move function. I will crate a simple Project with two Tasks.

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As you can see, I make Task 1, as 50% completed.

Now suppose, that for some reason this whole Project should be moved. for example, the Investor doesn’t have money for this Project, and will have it at February, 1st. So, in that Case you have to move entire Project to Start at that date, like this:

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As you can see, because I have some Actual Values (e.g. 50% completed for Task 1), I must confirm that I still want to move my Project, and I want those Actuals to be moved as well. I will get:

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So here, I’m going to put new Start Date, for entire Project, and it will be moved, to start at this specific date:

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So, to conclude, Move is function with which you move entire Project to start at different date!

Now look again at the first picture in this post. And let’s say that today is Friday, 06.01.2017., and the only work done is those 50% for Task 1. If you are not the Magician, you will not be able to complete the work in the Past. So, you must update the Schedule to reflect real situation. First of all you should set status date as I will (in my example, Friday 06.01.2017):

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Finally you should Update this Project:

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and you will get:

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As you can see, Start date remains same, but other, unfinished parts are updated according to Status date.

Notice, that if Task 1 was 0% completed, you will gate the same result in with both features described above, but the purpose of those two features is totally different!

Best Regards!

Posted in Micsrosoft Project 2016, MS PROJECT 2016, PMI, PRoject Management | Tagged , , | 2 Comments

How to make week shifts in MS PROJECT 2016?

Hi,

Today, I will explain next Scenario in MS PROJECT 2016: Suppose that you have a project team who will work 5 days a week (Monday to Friday), but every third week the whole team will be off. This is common situation with a Teams who are working on Project, but also at Operations in their Company.

First I will create a simple Project with 7 Tasks, and  each of them will have 5 days Duration:

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Now, I will crate new Calendar, and I will call it Third week off, and in it I will make every third week as a non working, which is a point of this Post:

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and:

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and then:

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and:

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Now I am going to create two Resources, John and Mary, and I will assign this calendar to them:

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Finally, I will assign those Resources to my Tasks, and I will get:

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As you can see, every third week is non working week.

Easy, isn’t it.

My dear Blog Readers, this is my last post for this Year. I hope that you will read my post next year as well, and I wish you all the best for the New Year – 2017.

Regards!

Posted in MICROSOFT PROJECT, Micsrosoft Project 2016, PMI, PRoject Management | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

When to use Resource Calendars in MS PROJECT 2016

Hi,

after my Post “Different weekends for Resources in MS PROJECT 2016”, there was a lot of discussion, that a problem can be solved with Resource Calendars, and that be will be the best way. Yes, it can be done like that, and no, this is not always the best solution. so I will show when is best to use Resource Calendars in MS PROJECT 2016.

I will show you an example with a very simple – one Task Project:

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I will create ten different resources:

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Now suppose that only I, Nenad, should work on Saturdays. In that case, I will not create Resource Calendar, even I can do it in this way. Why? Because this is an exception which apply only to me, so I will use the easiest way, and that is, I will modify the Standard calendar only for me:

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and:

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Now I will assign myself to the Task, and I will get:

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Let’s take a look in a Task Usage View:

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As you can see, I will work on that Task at Saturday.

Now suppose that not only me, but also John, Mary, Peter and Paula should work on Saturday. What can I do? I have to choices. Repeat steps above for each of these Resources (suppose there are not only 5, but 85 of them), or create Resource Calendar, which I will do. Follow these steps:

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and then:

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OK. Now I will make Saturdays as work days for this Calendar:

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and then:

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Now I will assign this Calendar to Specific (mention above) Resources:

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Finally I will assign those Resource to the Task, and Adis, as well (who has Standard Calendar):

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As you can see, only Adis will not work at Saturday.

Now, again, when to use Resource Calendars. From my point of view when multiple Resources share same Working Time, and Exceptions (like days off, Holidays, etc.9. When you have only one or two Resources with same Working time, and/or Exceptions, you can modify Standard Calendar for them. it is shorter way. Of course, when you have only one Resources with different working time you can create Resource Calendar as well, but you don’t have to, and that is not the shorter way. And, for the end, let’s say that Mary, has day off at Wednesday, 12/21/2016. You can now follow steps described in my first example and change Working Saturdays Calendar just for her, or you can create separate Calendar for her (Mary’s Calendar, for example), but again, it is not the shorter way to do it.

So it is up to you which approach will you take.

Regards!

Posted in MICROSOFT PROJECT, Micsrosoft Project 2016, MS PROJECT 2016, PMI, PRoject Management | Tagged , , | 1 Comment

% Work Completed without Resources assigned to Tasks

 

Hi,

I wrote several Posts about % Work completed field, and how does it change when assigned Resources to the Task. As you know, Work is 0 hours until you assign Resource to the Task. But, is it possible to have Work for the Task and % Work Completed without assigned Resources. The answer is YES, and II ‘ will show you how with MS PROJECT 2016!

First I will create a simple Project with one Task 5 days duration:

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As you can see, I added some extra fields in a Gant Chart View like: Work, Actual work, and % Work Completed.

Now, I will say that Work is 32 hours, and I will put it in the Work field

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The Magic Formula: WORK = DURATION * UNITS, does not work here, because Units = 0%. Why? Because Units are to come from assigned Resources, and we do not have them. So duration remains 5 days.

Now, let’s say that Actual Work is 24 hours. When I enter it I will get:

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As you can see % Work Complete is 75% (24 hrs./32 hrs. = 75%)

So, it can be done, but only if you put work on the Task level when you don’t have any Resource assigned to Tasks.

Regards.

Posted in MICROSOFT PROJECT, Microsoft Project Server 2010, MS PROJECT 2016 | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Different weekends for Resources in MS PROJECT 2016

Hi,

I have a very good question from one of my Blog Readers:

Hi!

How does one fix different holidays for persons on the same activity? That is if X and Y are working on the same Project and Task and while X has weekly off on Sat and Sun, Y has weekly off on Sun only. So how do I fix the working time??”

I will show you how to do this using example above, with MS PROJECT 2016!

First I’m going to Create a brand new Project with one Task, 7 days duration:

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Now I will create two Resources, X, and Y:

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By default, both Resources will work from Monday to Friday, and they are not supposed to work on Saturday, and Sunday. Now I will enable resource Y to work on Saturday:

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and:

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Now I will assign both, X, and Y to the Task:

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As you can see, Duration is now 8 days, because Resource Y is going to work at Saturday. I will show you Task Usage View now:

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So, both resources will fork 56 hours (7 Days * 8 hours per day = 56 hours). but, Resource X will work from Monday to Friday, and then next Monday and Tuesday. Resource Y will work from  Monday to Saturday, and then next Monday!

So it is easy, isn’t it.

Regards!

Posted in MICROSOFT PROJECT, MS PROJECT 2016, PMI, PRoject Management | Tagged , , | Leave a comment