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Getting Resource & Task Information together at the Assignment level RRS feed

  • Question

  • I've tried for a while to find a way to do this in Project, but have never been successful.  I'm currently on 2003 and was considering going to 2007 or 2010, but need to know if they provide this capability I've never been able to get from Project before.  Or maybe it has been there, but I've never found it.

    For my monthly project reporting, I have to report Actual and Remaining Hours & Costs - no biggie there.

    However, I have to classify each task as being either capitalizable or expense (call it Task Type) for accounting reasons.  We do that by using a text field consistently across all projects, but I realize it could also be done using a flag field or even an Outline Code.  Again - still no problem, really.

    The complicating factor comes into play in that we have to also report our hours and costs metrics based on resource type WITHIN those task types.  We have a resource type to categorize them as either internal (employee) or external (contractor).

    So for my project, I need 4 numbers for each metric I'm reporting on, categorized by the combination of Task Type & Resource Type.  Take Actual hours for instance.  I need to get Actual hours summarized into the following buckets:   Internal Capital Hours, Internal Expense Hours, External Capital Hours, External Expense Hours.  Same with remaining hours, actual costs, remaining costs, etc.

    I can get an indicator at the Task level for Capital/Expense, and I can get an indicator at the Resource level for Internal/External.  But what I can't seem to figure out how to do is to then get those two pieces of information TOGETHER at the Assignment level - which is where resources and tasks are linked up.  If I had that, I could then customize some of the available number fields to interrogate these two indicators for each assignment to determine into which bucket to total the hours or costs.

    However, the fields available for categorizing Tasks don't show on a Resource Usage View.  The fields available for categorizing Resources don't show on a Task usage view.  I tried Outline Codes recently, but they also seem to be specific to either Tasks or Resources.

    So I’m wondering if this is even possible in MS Project, or if it may be something that would be achievable in the later versions, like 2007 or 2010 (since I'm still on 2003).

    We do not have MS Project Server here, so that’s not an option.

    Any suggestions or guidance would be greatly appreciated.  Or if it's just not accommodated in the product's data model, I guess that would be good to know so I can stop trying, albeit disappointing.

    Thanks for considering this detailed & difficult question!

    Tuesday, July 24, 2012 9:52 PM

Answers

  • Hi,

    This is a problem indeed. A few years ago I wrote a macro to copy data seen in the Task usage view to data in he resource usage view. It is published in

    http://project.mvps.org/faqs.htm

    Look up FAQ 37: custom fields in tables.

    Greetings,

    • Marked as answer by Dmatz Wednesday, July 25, 2012 4:51 PM
    Wednesday, July 25, 2012 7:42 AM
    Moderator

All replies

  • I believe you need rolldown enabled on your task and resource custom fields. Rolldown copies the Task and/or Resource custom field to the Assignment record.

    The assignment record is the intersection between Task and Resource and is what you are viewing when working with the usage views.

    Go to the dialog where you defined the custom field and ensure that the Assignment Rolldown is enabled for these fields. Then, update the custom field data and Project should populate the assignment copy.

    I don't currently have a 2003 client so I can't give you exact steps.

    Hope this helps.

    Treb Gatte

    Tuesday, July 24, 2012 10:20 PM
    Moderator
  • Hi,

    This is a problem indeed. A few years ago I wrote a macro to copy data seen in the Task usage view to data in he resource usage view. It is published in

    http://project.mvps.org/faqs.htm

    Look up FAQ 37: custom fields in tables.

    Greetings,

    • Marked as answer by Dmatz Wednesday, July 25, 2012 4:51 PM
    Wednesday, July 25, 2012 7:42 AM
    Moderator
  • Thanks so much for the response Treb.

    That is a feature added in 2007 which I did not have available to me in 2003.  A collegue has that version, so I was able to borrow his PC to test this feature out.

    Unfortunately, it still does not combine the two fields on the same Assignment view.  It does indeed push the value down to the assignment level.  However, the Task Usage view only has those custom fields from the Task side available, and the Resource Usage view only has the custom fields from the Resoruce side available.  So while I can see one or the other at the Assignment level (depending on whether I'm in a Task Usage or a Resource Usage view), I still cannot see them both TOGETHER on the same assignment view.

    It seems MS has drawn a line between Tasks and Resources for custom fields, and never the two shall meet.

    I'd be thrilled to be either wrong or missing something on this point, so if you or anyone else has any other ideas, I'd love to hear them.

    But I can see how this would be useful for other purposes, so I'm glad they added that capability and I appreciate you pointing it out.

    Dave


    David Matzenbach

    • Marked as answer by Dmatz Wednesday, July 25, 2012 4:51 PM
    • Unmarked as answer by Dmatz Wednesday, July 25, 2012 4:51 PM
    Wednesday, July 25, 2012 1:21 PM
  • Hi,

    Make sure your custom fields have different names, then use the macro to copy the resource ones to Task fields or vice versa.

    Greetings,

    Wednesday, July 25, 2012 4:08 PM
    Moderator
  • Jan,

    Looks like this would accomplish exactly what I'm looking to get.  Since I'm on 2003, I took the macro from your post and used that on my plan.  Once I had the value at the Assignment level, I could then interrogate it to calculate the necessary value in a custom number field.  However, since I am still on 2003, I still don't have the ability to do the Roll Down option to get the Resource custom field down to the Assignment level.  I would just need to modify your macro to create a new one to do that, I'm guessing.

    However, I think I'd be better off upgrading to 2007 and using one of your second set of sample macros for that version and in combination, leveraging the Roll Down feature to get what I'm looking for all pushed down to the assignment level.

    This was a great help, and the only way I've found to get what I've been scratching my head over for quite a while.  I've never really used Macros in MSP, so I probably would have never thought of that approach. 

    Thanks so much for sharing and pointing me in the right direction!  Very much appreciated!!

    Dave


    David Matzenbach

    Wednesday, July 25, 2012 4:51 PM