Task Usage view, and spreading work over weeks with MS PROJECT 2016


a lot of MS PROJECT users are confused with using Task Usage View in MS PROJECT 2016, when tracking actual work not day per day, but week per week!

I will show you how MS PROJECT 2016 works in a simple example.

First I will create a simple Project:


and I will create two Resources: John with 100% Max. Units, and Mary with 50% Max. Units:


finally I will assign both of them to Task 1, and Task 2:


Now I’m going to switch to Task usage View:


As you can see:

  • Task 1 has 2 days Duration, and 24 hours of Work John 2*8hrs= 16 hrs., Mary 2*4hrs = 8 hrs. (because she will work only 50%), e.g. 16 +8  = 24 hrs.
  • Task 2 has 3 days Duration, and 36 hours of Work John 3*8hrs= 24 hrs., Mary 3*4hrs = 12 hrs. (because she will work only 50%), e.g. 16 +8  = 24 hrs.

Now suppose that you, a s a Project Manager get information that it was spent 12 hours at Task 1, and 12 hours at Task 2, in a week.

firs I will change Task Usage View:


and then:


and finally:


So now, I’m ready to put actual work on week basis scenario:


and I will get:


As you can see Actual Work is divided between John and Mary in a way that John spent twice time on both task than Mary, and this is because John is supposed to work 100%, and Mary only 50%. Remaining Work I pushed on next week for both Tasks, which is obvious, because Tasks were not finished as they were supposed to be – at first week.

But, let’s see how work is spread per day:


  • Task 1 and Task2: Actual work was 12 hours, e.g. 12 / 5 = 2,4 hours per day. this is per Task. John worked twice more than Mary, so it worked 2/3 per day per Task, and Mary 1/3 per day per Task, e.g., John worked 2,4 * 2/3 = 1,6 hours per day, and Mary 2,4 * 1/3 = 0,8 hours per day
  • Remaining work for Task 1 is 24 – 12  = 12 hours. It means that it can be finished at next Monday. John has to work 2/3 per day per Task, and Mary 1/3 per day per Task, e.g., John will work 12 * 2/3 = 8 hours, and Mary 12 * 1/3 = 4 hours.
  • Remaining work for Task 2 is 36 – 12  = 24 hours. It means that it can be finished at next Tuesday. John has to work 2/3 per day per Task, and Mary 1/3 per day per Task, e.g., John will work 12 * 2/3 = 8 hours per day, and Mary 12 * 1/3 = 4 hours per day. So they both will work  12 hours per day, and since Task 2 has Remaining work = 24 hours they should work two days.

Is it complicated? YES! Why am I explaining this. To warn you that this approach is not the right one.

If you use Task Usage View, and you have assigned Resources, put Actuals per Resources, not per Task. But for that, you must have information about how much hours each of your Resources has spent at each Task per week. Then MS PROJECT will spread those hours among days equally (of course if there is no calendar or other exceptions).

So, be very careful with putting Actuals per week.



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, MS PROJECT 2016, PMI, PRoject Management and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s