Summary Task Duration - Man Days? RRS feed

  • Question

  • Hey guys,

    I'm pretty new to Project so bear with me! I'll try to be as complete as possible!

    Having just confused myself and tried a few sample projects I've ascertained that the duration at the top of a summary task is actually how long this task will take from start to finish, not, as I'd previously thought, a sum of the man days assigned to each task.

    Conceptually it looks odd to have say three tasks taking 2 days, 15 days and 4 days adding to something other than 21 days. I've had occasions in practice and test where the summary task duration is both more and less than this sum.

    Is it possible to add a man hours/days etc summary either in addition to or instead of the duration? It also seems to avoid confusion one can't remove this summary duration without it changing the task mode to manual, which seems less than ideal.

    Any pointers much appreciated, I guess when we're all well versed with Excel this just looks plain odd (yet sort of makes sense!!)

    Thanks :)

    Thursday, September 26, 2013 3:46 PM

All replies

  • Hi Rob-R

    Welcome to Project - and one of the 1st things you need to get your head around is the difference between work and duration.  If you insert the work column, you see you can enter the values in there (by default in hours, but you can change that in the options).  Personally I wouldn't change any values on Summary Tasks, I would leave them as AutoScheduled and let them do their jobs as Summary Tasks.

    There are lots of good books and videos and other resources out there - obviously I'll direct you to mine which is aimed at newbies ;)

    BR,  Ben.

    Ben Howard [MVP] blog | web

    Thursday, September 26, 2013 4:32 PM
  • Thanks Ben, I'd added work already but I'd not contemplated, not did I know it was possible, to change work from hours to days, I was scrolling through the huge column list wondering if there was 'man days' or 'days' or something similar.

    Friday, September 27, 2013 3:14 PM
  • Rob-R,

    I'm not sure which column you are scrolling through but the default setting for the Work field can be found under Tile/Options/Schedule group/Scheduling options for this project. The choices are: minutes, hours, days, weeks and months. And, the definition for days, weeks and months is under Calendar options for this project.

    What exactly are you trying to accomplish?


    Friday, September 27, 2013 4:15 PM
  • It's fine now John, I meant when you add an additional column that there's a weath of choices, as opposed to work (which I already had) I was looking for man days, not appreciating I could change the units of work, which I've now done.

    Might make the developers less depressed - seeing the figures in days as opposed to hours!

    Friday, September 27, 2013 4:22 PM