In this Post, I will show you how to create and manage Enterprise Custom Fields in MS PROJECT SERVER 2010.
First of all, why do you need those fields? The answer is simple: To suit your needs! Let’s suppose that you need to track information about cost center! Where can you enter this cost center? In the custom field!
There are four types of Custom Fields:
- Custom Fields in which you can enter any value (depends on type of field, which I will explain later)
- Custom Fields that have predefined values (via Lookup table)
- Custom Fields with formula
- Custom Fields that displays graphical indicator
You can access Custom Fields here:
and you will get:
As you can see there are several default custom fields (twenty of them)!
I will now create the brand new field, Profit Center. When I click on the New Field button, I will get:
This is only the first part of the screen! In the Name field I will put the name of this custom field. In the description field I will enter description of thist field.
In Entity field I can choose: Project, Resource or Task.
- If I choose Project, this custom field is applied to the PROJECT LEVEL.
- If I choose Resource, this custom field is applied to the RESOURCE LEVEL
- If I choose Task, this custom field is applied to the TASK LEVEL
The next field is Type. Here I can define what kind of field do I want to create:
- Cost – It is used for fields in which you will enter MONEY (e.g.. currency amount), for example if you want to have a Bonus field in which you will enter bonus for Resource, you should use this field type
- Date – It is used for fields in which you want to enter date, for example, Date of Birth for your resources
- Duration – It is used for fields which contains durations, for example duration between planned and actuals (of course, you should use formula for that)
- Flag – It is used when you have to decide between two values (yes or no), for example if you want to have field like disabled for your resources
- Number – It is used for any number except Cost, for example, here you can put the shoe number of your resource if you have protective footwear for your resources
- Text – You can enter whatever you want here!
When you choose Type you have to choose Custom Attributes, too:
Those attributes are not the same for every Type of custom field. The picture above displays custom attributes for the Text type:
- Single line of text – you will choose that if you want to enter only a single line of text in this field
- Multiple lines of text – you will choose that if you want to enter multiple lines of text in this field. If you choose that, you will not see in Project information Tab in MS PROJECT PROFESSIONAL 2010!
- Lookup Table – is available with Text type! I will explain usage of Lookup Table in my next Post!
- Formula – if you want to use a specific formula which you can define for this custom field. I will explain this in one of my next Posts.
In Department field if you department, then only users which belongs to that particular Department will be able to see this custom field. If you leave this field empty, all users will see this custom field!
Behavior controlled by workflow – if you choose this option than the behavior of this field will be controlled by workflow
Require that this field has information – If you select Yes than this field can not be blank, and you will have to fill it! Be careful with that!
For my example, I will choose Resource entity and Text type, because I want that every Resource belong to Profit Center, no matter on which Projects or Tasks will they work on! I will also make this field as Required!
Now I will save this custom field:
You can see it here:
OK! Now what? Where is this field applied? Let us go to the Manage Users:
and I will get:
Now I will choose, for example, Project Manager #1 and I will get:
On the middle part of this screen, I am getting this new Enterprise custom field:
I will now, try to save this without putting anything to this field:
I can not do it, because this custom field is required! The conclusion? BEFORE you start to add your resources, tasks, or project, first define, and crate your custom fields. In my case, I should go from one resource to another, and fill this field, which can be very annoying!
So I will put, for example, abc123 in that field!
and I will save it!
It works! But you will say: “YOU ARE MORON! What does abc123 mean?”. It means nothing. I just show you that in this type of custom field I can put whatever I want!
Of course if you have predefined Profit Centers in your company, you should use a lookup table! How? Read my next Post!