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Question / Recording project management hours RRS feed

  • Question

  • OK, Project 2007 has me baffled again.

    What is the easiest way to record a task to represent, for example, "project management time." Basically, I want my plan to indicate that the project manager will spend 20% of his time on the project for the duration of the project. But, I can't seem to figure out a way to do this that is also flexible in case the end date of the project also changes.

    Many thanks!

    ~Steve

    Wednesday, December 21, 2011 7:32 PM

Answers

  • Steve,

    Dale said you may hear from others. Well, I'm one of the "others".

    If you want your management task to self-adjust you could use a hammock task (see, FAQ 19 at, http://project.mvps.org/faqs.htm). However, now that I've mentioned that, I recommend against it because it involves the use of paste links which are fragile and prone to corruption.

    Another way to handle management tasks is to create a recurring task or series of recurring tasks that you adjust as the program progresses. Recurring tasks would allow for a little more discrete, (e.g. month by month), management support, if that's of any benefit for you.

    John

    Wednesday, December 21, 2011 8:28 PM
  • OK - since everyone else is getting into the action...

    1) I wouldn't typically assign a resource to a summary task (although yes, I am working on an implementation where we do just that).

    2) Given that, I'd create a phase level structure called Project Management and include Project Management and Status Meetings as two discrete tasks.

    3) Since nobody else mentioned it, you could write a quick macro to automatically adjust the duration of those tasks - basically just copy the Project Duration - 1 day to the duration of those two tasks.  This will then automatically adjust Work to give you a better estimate of the project. (See the Project Widgets site for a free download of a similar macro.)

    4) For added effect, contour the Project Management to front load the work - as that typically is the case in an IT project....


    Andrew Lavinsky [MVP] Blog: http://azlav.umtblog.com Twitter: @alavinsky
    Friday, December 23, 2011 6:37 PM
    Moderator

All replies

  • Steve --

    The way I usually recommend that people handle this is by creating a task called Project Management and setting the Duration as 1 day less than the total Duration of the project.  The reason for setting the Duration less than the project Duration is so the task will not be marked as a Critical task in the project.  Then, in your case, you would assign yourself to this task at a Units value of 20%.  If the project increases in Duration during the life of the project, you could then increase the Duration of the Project Management task if you desire.  That's one way to handle it.  I'll be some of the others will have good ideas for you as well.  Hope this helps.


    Dale A. Howard [MVP]
    VP of Educational Services
    msProjectExperts
    http://www.msprojectexperts.com
    http://www.projectserverexperts.com
    "We write the books on Project Server"

    Wednesday, December 21, 2011 7:45 PM
    Moderator
  • Yeah, that's kind of what I had been doing (although I didn't know about the 1 day tip). I didn't know if there was a way to include some sort of predecessor that would allow that duration to self-adjust if the project schedule shifted.
    Wednesday, December 21, 2011 7:46 PM
  • Hi ,

    You could use a hammock. Please see FAQ Item: 19. Hammock Tasks. FAQs, companion products and other useful Project information can be seen at  this web address: http://project.mvps.org/faqs.htm

    Hope this helps - please let us know how you get on :-)

    Mike Glen
    Project MVP (97 - 11)
    See http://tinyurl.com/2xbhc for my free  Project Tutorials

    Wednesday, December 21, 2011 7:59 PM
    Moderator
  • Steve,

    Dale said you may hear from others. Well, I'm one of the "others".

    If you want your management task to self-adjust you could use a hammock task (see, FAQ 19 at, http://project.mvps.org/faqs.htm). However, now that I've mentioned that, I recommend against it because it involves the use of paste links which are fragile and prone to corruption.

    Another way to handle management tasks is to create a recurring task or series of recurring tasks that you adjust as the program progresses. Recurring tasks would allow for a little more discrete, (e.g. month by month), management support, if that's of any benefit for you.

    John

    Wednesday, December 21, 2011 8:28 PM
  • I had the same problem with my projects, it is the first time that I read about hammock tasks, seems intresting, I have to check out if that works and doesn't make it to fragile as John - Project stated.

    I used this simple fix:

    At the top most leven (summery task) just add the project manager there and set it to 20% assignment. This should just put 20% over the entire period, not matter what happens (e.g. changes in the project length) since it's moving with the start/end date. (ofcourse it should be set to automatic schedualing, but since you have project 2007, that should be a given.)

    Hope this helps, and a Merry Christmas.

     

    -- Koen.

    Friday, December 23, 2011 12:32 PM
  • Well, I'll chime in as well - just to round the opinions out.  I'm with John on this one.  For many of the projects I work with, management wants to know project management time/money per process/phase or iteration.  We use a series of tasks in each phase (inception, elaboration, etc) to be able to further refine project management spend.  This also avoids the issue of having an inception phase (for example) that never ends because you've put the "Project Management" tasks in that phase only.

    See what works best for you and your reporting requirements.

    I hope this helps.

    Julie

    Friday, December 23, 2011 2:55 PM
    Moderator
  • OK - since everyone else is getting into the action...

    1) I wouldn't typically assign a resource to a summary task (although yes, I am working on an implementation where we do just that).

    2) Given that, I'd create a phase level structure called Project Management and include Project Management and Status Meetings as two discrete tasks.

    3) Since nobody else mentioned it, you could write a quick macro to automatically adjust the duration of those tasks - basically just copy the Project Duration - 1 day to the duration of those two tasks.  This will then automatically adjust Work to give you a better estimate of the project. (See the Project Widgets site for a free download of a similar macro.)

    4) For added effect, contour the Project Management to front load the work - as that typically is the case in an IT project....


    Andrew Lavinsky [MVP] Blog: http://azlav.umtblog.com Twitter: @alavinsky
    Friday, December 23, 2011 6:37 PM
    Moderator