I received very interest comment for my latest post: “Very refreshing. Having said that, I am sorry, but I do not give credence to your entire plan, all be it stimulating none the less. It seems to me that your comments are generally not completely validated and in fact you are generally your self not really thoroughly convinced of your argument. In any case I did appreciate examining it.”
I say: “THANK YOU A LOT!” for your comment.
The answer is: “Thanks for your comment. I am just starting to building the Plan for my “Wedding” Project. I want to show how difficult it is. In my next blog posts I will continue to build my plan, and I will show the mistakes. I did some mistakes in this stage of Planning phase by the purpose. Anyway, whenever you have any comment, please write it down. I appreciate it!”
Obviously I have to give some further explanation. With my blog posts I was started with Planning phase “from the scratch”. In real life, in every Project, in early phase of planning, there are mistakes. In my last posts I put some Task, Resource, and Project Calendars. I will now continue to make my plan for the Project. I will building the schedule, define and assign resources, and add the costs and budget. After that I will show you where the mistakes are made, and I will explain how to correct them. Then I will save the Project Plan as a Baseline, and the work will start. Of, course I will track “actuals” vs. “planned” values.
This Blog post will be short, and there will be no samples. Why? Because before making a schedule you have to know the theory! After that we will build the schedule in MS PROJECT 2010.
Building the schedule means:
- Enter task durations
- Identify the relationship, or dependencies, among task
- Schedule certain tasks to achieve specific dates when necessary
You can build your schedule before you know your resources (it means, EHO WILL DO THE WORK?) or, if you have known resources and their availability, after you put them in MS PROJECT 2010, and set up their calendar (if it is different from Standard Calendar in MS PROJECT 2010) you can build your schedule.
For our “Wedding” Project I will first estimate duration for all my Tasks. How can I do it?
In the Duration Field you can put these units of time:
- 1d or just 1 (or any number you like)– unit is days (default value)
- 1h (or any number you like)– unit is hours
- 1m (or any number you like)– unit is minutes
- 1w (or any number you like)– unit is weeks
- 1mo or mo (or any number you like)– unit is months
That was easy. I will show you duration of my Tasks in the “wedding” project in my next blog post. But, the question is: “How do I know the duration of my task?”. It can be 1 day, or 1,5 day or 5 days?
There are many ways to establish Task duration:
- Previous Projects. It means, that you have the same or almost the same task in your previous Projects so you already know the Duration
- Team knowledge. If you already have your team (e.g. Resources) and you know who will do what, they can give you their estimated duration for their tasks on the Project
- Expert judgment. If you do not have a team you can obtain durations for some other specialists in the field (for example consultants, accountants etc.)
- Industry standards. For projects tasks typical to an industry or discipline (like Construction Projects), you can find how much time do you need for your Tasks
Be very careful. If you have the Resources assigned to your Project, and they give you estimated Task Duration you should know those person very well! Why? Because, they can be over optimistic, or over pessimistic, more or less experienced so they can do the wrong estimation.
What does it mean? It means that if you do not have proper resources for your project, or you do not know them well, estimations can differs a lot from real time needed for your tasks.
And last, but not least, you should always have a proper Resources for your Project.
Here is the funny picture about resources from internet. I hope that you will not be offended by this picture.
In my next post I will start to build the schedule for my “Wedding” Project!
Have a great weekend!