MS Project 2010 Tips – Splitting In-Progress Tasks

99 Tricks and Traps for Microsoft projectSetting an In-Progress Task

When the Split in-progress tasks option is enabled in the Tools, Options…, Schedule form, a task will Split automatically when a task commences before its predecessor finishes.

Microsoft Project is inconsistent when the Split in-progress tasks option is used with tasks that are assigned with one of the following options:

  • An Actual Start and 0% Complete — these tasks are not split, or
  • An Actual Start and % Complete set between 1% and 99% Complete — these tasks are split.

The two examples below are from the same schedule, both with the Split in-progress tasks option checked, one with 0% and one with 1%. You will notice the task assigned 0% has an earlier Finish  date than the task assigned 1% Complete, which has split.

Note: You therefore need to pay careful attention to any warning messages Microsoft Project presents.

Excerpt from 99 Tips and Traps for Microsoft Office Project

Paul Harris

Microsoft Project 2010 Tips and Traps – Resource Calendars

99 Tricks and Traps for Microsoft projectResource Calendars

Each resource is created with its very own editable calendar. Here are some important points:

  • Each new resource is assigned a copy of the current Project Calendar as its Base Calendar.
  • This Resource Base Calendar may be changed in the Resource Sheet or Change Working Time form to another Base Calendar.
  • Any change to a Base Calendar will be reflected in any Resource Calendar.
  • The Resource Calendar may be edited to suit the availability of the resource. Days may be made non workdays to represent holidays, etc.
  • Normally the duration of a resourced task calculated from the Resource Calendar.
  • A task will finish at the end of the longest resource assignment when there are two or more resources assigned to a task that have different end dates due to different Resource calendars or assignment durations.
  • When a Task has been assigned a calendar and the check box in the Task Information form Advanced tab Scheduling ignores resource calendars is checked the task duration is then calculated from the Task calendar.
  • The Finish date may be calculated differently after a task is assigned one or more resources when the Resources Calendars are not the same as the Task Calendar.

Excerpt from 99 Tips and Traps for Microsoft Office Project

Paul Harris

MS Project 2010 Tips – How to Assign Task Calendars

99 Tricks and Traps for Microsoft project“How to Assign Task Calendars

A task may be assigned a calendar that is different from the Project Calendar by:

  • Displaying the Task Calendar column and editing the Task Calendar from this column, or
  • Double-clicking on the task to open the Task Information form and selecting the Advanced tab.

After a calendar has been assigned, an icon will appear in the Indicators column and the calendar name displayed in the Task Calendar column, as shown in the picture below for the Installation Requirements task:

  • The task Finish date, Total Float, Free Float and Variances from a Baseline will be calculated on the Task Calendar. This often leads to confusion for new users as tasks on a 24-hour/day calendar will have different Float than tasks on an 8-hour/day calendar.
  • When resources are assigned to a Task the Finish date is calculated on the Resource calendar; unless the Task has been assigned a calendar and the box in the Task Information form Advanced tab Scheduling ignores resource calendars is checked, then the task duration is calculated based on the assigned Task Calendar.”

Excerpt from 99 Tips and Traps for Microsoft Office Project

Paul Harris

Planning and Scheduling Using Microsoft® Project 2010

SHORT DESCRIPTION AND FRONT COVER TEXT The book is designed for users of earlier versions to upgrade their skills and for new planners to learn the software. It starts with the basics required to create a schedule, through resource planning and on to the more advanced features. A chapter is dedicated to the new functions and it outlines the differences from the earlier versions throughout the book.

Microsoft® Project 2010 is an extensive software update with many new functions and as a result this is a complete rewrite of the author’s previous book. It is designed to teach project management professionals how to use the software in a project environment.

BACKGROUND ON BOOK This publication was written so it may be used as:

Ø  A training manual, or

Ø  A self teach book, or

Ø  A user guide.

The book stays focused on the information required to create and update a schedule with or without resources using Microsoft® Project 2010 by:

Ø  Concentrating on the core functions required to plan and control a project.

Ø  Keeping the information relevant to each topic in the appropriate chapter.

Ø  Providing a quick reference at the start of each chapter listing the chapter topics.

Ø  Providing a comprehensive index of all topics.

READERSHIP The book is aimed at:

Ø  Project managers and schedulers who wish learn the software, however are unable to attend a training course, or require a reference book.

Ø  Project management companies in industries such as building, construction, oil & gas, software development, government and defence who wish to run their own software training courses or provide their employees a good practical guide to using the software.

Ø  Training organizations who require a training manual to run their own courses.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR Paul Harris holds an Honours Degree in Civil Engineering obtained in the UK and is a Certified Cost Engineer through AACE International, a certified PRINCE2™ practitioner and Approved PRINCE2™ Trainer. He has worked in the project controls industry for a number of years and has assisted many companies in a range of industries to set up and run project controls systems. His Melbourne, Australia based company, Eastwood Harris Pty Ltd, offers project controls consulting and training services with a strong focus on Microsoft and Primavera software.
CUSTOMIZATION FOR TRAINING COURSES Training organizations or companies who wish to conduct their own training may have the book tailored to suit their requirements. This may be achieved by removing, reordering or adding content to the book and by writing their own exercises. These books are registered with the Project Management Institute  and PMI Registered Education Providers may award Professional Development Units when presenting courses using this material and a PowerPoint slide show is available for this course. Please contact the author to discuss this service.
AUTHOR’S COMMENT As a project controls consultant I have used a number of planning and scheduling software packages for the planning and control of a range of project types and sizes. I have written and published books for Primavera SureTrak®, Primavera P3®, Primavera Project Manager® P6 and Microsoft® Project. This book follows a similar layout to my previous books, but with the more advanced material moved to a new section towards at the back of the book. I trust this resource will assist you in understanding how to use Microsoft® Project on your projects.

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