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How do you track multiple projects in Microsoft Project with set group of resources ? RRS feed

  • Question

  • What happens if you are scheduling multiple projects (100 +) with each project have around 30 taks in MSP with a fixed group of resources that perform tasks in every project.

    I have tried using inserted projects and keeping the links but stated having memory issues after 10-12 projects.

    In my company i don't think Project Server is an Option.

    Is there a way to monitor how every resource does what when so that every resource or stakeholder knows which tasks need to be performed when and also possibly switch resources?
    I have seen team planner but don't think it works for multiple projects or multiple different files.
    Please advise.


    sdkushte

    Thursday, August 9, 2012 9:15 PM

Answers

  • Hello,

    If you are using 2003 (and an upgrade to 2010 is not an option), I believe your best bet is to use a single file for all projects.  The 2003 version (even with all patches and upgrades) was not the best at multiple inserted projects.  It was improved dramtically with 2007 and 2010.  So, if you are forced to stay with 2003, use a single file for all projects.  As projects drop off the radar and new projects come online, add or delete as required, making copies of the file moving forward.  

    Since this places all information in one file, the multiple critical path option would work better, it would make setting any relationships between projects easier, your resources are in one place, thus making the outcome of leveling accurate between projects. 

    I would also recommend using a version style naming convention, e.g. 20120811.Master.mpp.

    Hope this helps.


    Gregg D. Richie, PMP, MCTS; Author, Microsoft Project 2010, Microsoft Official Academic Course Series

    Saturday, August 11, 2012 6:37 PM

All replies

  • Hi,

    I think a Shared Resource Pool is what you are lokking for. Have a look at http://office.microsoft.com/en-us/project-help/share-resources-using-a-resource-pool-HA010214871.aspx .

    Does this fit to your requirement?
    Regards
    Barbara


    Friday, August 10, 2012 5:20 AM
    Moderator
  • Hi,

    I think Barbara is right. But for some reason her link is not working. Here a differant link how to create a resource pool. My advice is to play around with it to see if it fits your needs. http://office.microsoft.com/en-us/project-help/create-a-resource-pool-for-sharing-resources-across-projects-HP045303641.aspx

    Hope it helps.

    With Kind Regards,

    Robin Kruithof


    Technical Consultant EPM

    Friday, August 10, 2012 8:13 AM
  • Thank You Guys for your suggestions. Yes I have tried using a shared resource pool. Let me try to explain the whole situation first. The company that I work in is a turnkey  installed product company that does all phases of work for a product i.e Design – Fabrication-Install.

    The work for each project  is divided in the above 3 phases namely Design Phase –Fabrication Phase- Install Phase.

    We usually do around 70-120 projects at a given point of time which can be in any one of the above phase. Right now I am assigning resources to the install phases as it is the only phase that is “specific resource” driven and the most dynamic. These were the issues that I had when doing this.

    When  I assigned shared resources to all these individual projects and after say 15-20 projects of doing that it started having memory issues so I decided against it. ( Inserting them into one master and assigning resources I thought would do better)

    When I made an individual schedule for each project and started inserting them in a “Dynamic Master” it started having memory issues again after say 10-15 inserted projects. Hence I broke the link between the inserted project and the master, thus making it a “Static Master”

    Now I basically have copies of the individual files in the static master ( This is where I am having trouble viewing the critical path of individual files in the master and yes I have tried the option “show multiple critical paths” but it does not give the desired results)

    Is there a way I can have these 100+ active projects with a shared resource pool as in the future we have a variation in our product that has a different schedule but same shared resources.

    To make matters worse I am using MSP 2003 and Project server is not an option.

    I have also attached the file in the link if anyone wants to see what I am talking about

    http://www.mediafire.com/?1lypsd83fw2johl


    sdkushte

    Friday, August 10, 2012 2:55 PM
  • Hello,

    If you are using 2003 (and an upgrade to 2010 is not an option), I believe your best bet is to use a single file for all projects.  The 2003 version (even with all patches and upgrades) was not the best at multiple inserted projects.  It was improved dramtically with 2007 and 2010.  So, if you are forced to stay with 2003, use a single file for all projects.  As projects drop off the radar and new projects come online, add or delete as required, making copies of the file moving forward.  

    Since this places all information in one file, the multiple critical path option would work better, it would make setting any relationships between projects easier, your resources are in one place, thus making the outcome of leveling accurate between projects. 

    I would also recommend using a version style naming convention, e.g. 20120811.Master.mpp.

    Hope this helps.


    Gregg D. Richie, PMP, MCTS; Author, Microsoft Project 2010, Microsoft Official Academic Course Series

    Saturday, August 11, 2012 6:37 PM
  • Gregg,

    That is probably the best and the most relevant information I have received on this topic yet.

    I really appreciate it.

    I am doing something very similiar to what you mentioned. I have all the projects listed in one master and I mark the indivdual tasks as complete, as the weeks progress. it gives me a better idea as to what finished when and to analyze  possible clashes and  overallocation issues. The multiple Critical path function does not work well as it shows an open link task with no successor to be on the critical path which IMO is erroneous and misleading. however since my WBS will be common accross all the subprojects, I have identifed a pattern in the critical path tasks and can manually mark them ( say red) to be consistent in the schedule.

    Anyways, in the future i am going to have 2 new seperate master schedules that will have this orginal master as the shared resource pool to analze resource allocation over the entire company. So basically I will have 3 masters with around 100 subprojects each with one file being the shared resource pool. I am however a liitle nervous about having memory issues.  What do you reccommend for this process. Will it work fine ?


    sdkushte

    Monday, August 13, 2012 4:41 PM