How to Use the Group, Sort and Layout Features in Primavera P6 Software

Project Planning and Control Using Oracle Primavera P6 - Version 8.2 EPPM WebUSING GROUP, SORT AND LAYOUTS in PRIMAVERA P6

Group and Sort enables data such as activities in the Activities Window, WBS Nodes in the WBS Window, projects in the Project Window, and many other data items to be sorted and organized under other parameters such as Dates and Resources or user defined Activity and Project Codes. This function is similar to Organize in P3 and SureTrak and Grouping in Microsoft Project and Asta Powerproject.

Layouts is a function in which the formatting of parameters such as the Group and Sort, Columns and Bars is saved and reapplied later. This function is similar to Layouts in P3 and SureTrak or Views in Asta Power Project and Microsoft Project.

A Layout may be edited, saved, or reapplied at a later date and may have a Filter associated with it. Layouts contain the formatting for all options of both the top and bottom pane.

Although Group and Sort is available in many forms, Layouts are only available in a few places including the following Windows:

This chapter will concentrate on how Group and Sort and Layouts are applied in the Activities Window but the same principles apply to the other windows. This chapter covers the following topics:

Topic Notes on the Function
  • Reformat the Grouping and Sorting of projects in the Projects Window or activities in the Activities Window by opening the Group and Sort form
  • Click on the  icon, or
  • Select View, Group and Sort by, Customize.
  • Create, save or edit a Layout
  • Click on the  icon, or

Select View, Group and Sort by, Customize.

Create, save or edit a Layout Select either:

  • From the menu View, Layout, Save Layout As…, or
  • From the Layout bar Layout, Save As….

The Layout bar location is indicated in the following picture:

layout window in primavera p6

Paul Harris writes training manuals for MS Project and Primavera P6 and Delivers Project Management Training Courses Throughout Australia and the world.  His books are available on Amazon and Kindle

How to Use the Auto-Status Scheduling Feature in Microsoft Project

99 Tricks and Traps for Microsoft projectSimple Procedure for Statusing a Schedule in MS Project – Using Auto Status

The following process should be considered for people who require one simple method of statusing a schedule. This may not suit all situations especially when a project is way off plan:

  • Set the Baseline by selecting Tools, Tracking, Save Baseline….
  • Display the Baseline bars by selecting Format, Gantt Chart Wizard….
  • Display the Status Date gridline, select Format, Gridlines…, select Status Date.
  • Select Tools, Tracking, Update Project… to open the Update Project form and select Set 0% – 100 % Complete, set the date in the form to the new Status Date.
  • The project will be statused as if it has progressed exactly as planned and the Status Date should now be displayed in the bar chart.
  • Displaying the Tracking Table may assist here.
  • Now adjust the task dates by dragging the bars or entering the dates in the appropriate column; the order that the actions take place is important:
  • Complete tasks should have the Actual Start and then the Actual Finish dates adjusted, in this order, to the date that the task actually started and actually finished. If you adjust the Finish date first then the Start date, you will then have to readjust the Finish date again.
  • Completed Milestones will be changed to a Task when an Actual Finish date is entered, so only enter an Actual Start and 100% if a Milestone is complete.
  • In-Progress tasks should have the Actual Start entered first, then the task bar dragged or Duration adjusted so the finish date is where it is expected to finish, and finally the % Complete adjusted.
  • Consider using the Tracking toolbar at this point.
  • Unstarted tasks should have their logic and durations revised.
  • Add any scope changes to the schedule.
  • Save the project with a new filename and save for future reference.

Paul Harris writes training manuals for MS Project and Primavera P6 and Delivers Project Management Training Courses Throughout Australia and the world.  His books are available on Amazon and Kindle.

How to Assign Constraints in Primavera P6 – Project Management Software

Assigning Constraints in Primavera P6 Version 8.2

eh.com.au warning symbol When setting constraints sometimes the constraint time will not be set at the start or finish of the activity calendar but set at 00:00 or some other irrelevant time. Therefore when setting constraints you should always display the time by selecting Edit, User Preferences …, Dates tab to ensure the constraint time is compatible with the activity calendar.

Project Planning and Control Using Oracle Primavera P6 - Version 8.2 EPPM WebNumber of Constraints per Activity

Two constraints are permitted against each activity. They are titled Primary and Secondary Constraint. After the Primary has been set, a Secondary may be set only when the combination is logical and therefore a reduced list of constraints is available from the Secondary Constraint list after the Primary has been set.

Setting a Primary Constraint Using the Activity Details Form

To assign a constraint using the Activity Details form:

  • Select the activity requiring a constraint,
  • Open the Status tab on the Activity Details form,
  • Select the Primary Constraint type from the Date drop down list to the right of Primary:

setting contraints in p6 1

Setting a Secondary Constraint Using the Activity Details Form

To assign a constraint using the Activity Details form:

  • Select the activity requiring a constraint,
  • Open the Status tab on the Activity Details form,
  • Select the Secondary Constraint type from the Date drop down list to the right of Secondary:

setting contraints in p6 2

The picture above shows that after a Primary Start On or After constraint is set there are only two Secondary Constraints available. After a constraint is set the date will have an asterisk “*” next to it.

  • Start Constraints will have the “*” next to the Start Date, and
  • Finish Constraints will have the “*” next to the Finish Date.
  • Unlike P3 and SureTrak one does not have to display the Late Dates to see a Late Constraint “*”.

Expected Finish Constraint

This constraint is set in the dates Status area above the Constraints area and will only work if the Tools, Schedule…, , Use Expected Finish dates check box is checked.

Paul Harris writes training manuals for MS Project and Primavera P6 and Delivers Project Management Training Courses Throughout Australia and the world.  His books are available on Amazon and Kindle.

How to Fix Calculations Options in Microsoft Project – MS Project Tips

99 Tips and traps for microsoft project - ebookWhy Do Calculation Options – Move end of completed parts…Not Work in MS Project?

These new functions were introduced in Microsoft Project 2002 intended to assist schedulers to place the new tasks as they are added to the schedule in a logical position with respect to the Status Date. This function is difficult to use and some practice is required to make it work properly.

Here are some tips if you are unable to get it to work:

  1. Select the Tools, Options…, Calculation tab and these options are found under the Calculation options for ‘Project Name’:
  2. If the Status Date has not been set then the Current Date is used.

For all these options to operate all four of the following parameters must be met:

  • The Split in-progress tasks option in the Schedule tab must be checked, and
  • The required option on the Calculation tab must be checked before the task is added or edited, and
  • The Updating task status updates resource status option on the Calculation tab must be checked, and
  • These options may NOT be turned on and off to recalculate all tasks. The options only work on new tasks when they are added to a schedule or when a task is updated by changing the % Complete.
  • This function will ignore constraints even when the Schedule Option Tasks will always honor their constraint dates has been set.
  • This function may not be applied to existing schedules, but only to new tasks if the options are set before the tasks are added or when a task % Complete is updated.

This function has some restrictions:

  • Existing schedules may not be opened and the function applied.
  • When the Move start of remaining parts before status date forward to status date is used, it will change any Actual Start date that you have entered prior to entering a % Complete. Changing an Actual Date is not a desirable event.

Note: This option should be used with caution and users should ensure they fully understand how this function operates by statusing a simple practice schedule multiple times.

Paul Harris writes training manuals for MS Project and Primavera P6 and Delivers Project Management Training Courses Throughout Australia and the world.  His books are available on Amazon and Kindle.

Formatting Bar Text and Colors in MS Project 2010

How to Format Bar Text in Microsoft Project

Text may be placed on all bars using the Format, Bar… form or selected bars using the Format, Bar Styles… form.

Note: The length of the Bar Chart may be reduced by placing the text on top of the bar instead of the end:

formatting bar text in ms project

How to Format Bar Colors in MS Project

  • Colors are formatted in a number of forms and there is no single form for formatting all colors:
  • Nonworking time colors in the Gantt Chart are formatted in the Timescale form; double-click on the timescale.
  • Text colors are formatted in the Text Styles and Font forms, found under the Format command.
  • Gridline colors are formatted in the Gridlines form, also found under the Format command.
  • Hyperlink colors are formatted under Tools, Options…, Edit tab.
  • Timescale and Column Header colors are formatted with the system color scheme used in the Desktop, Start, Control Panel, Display option.

The Logic Lines, also known as Dependencies, Relationships, or Links, inherit their color from the predecessor’s bar color in the Gantt Chart view and may be formatted in the Network Diagram view by selecting Format, Layout….

99 Tips and traps for microsoft project - ebook

Eastwood Harris Supplies Project Management Training Manuals, Project Management Training Presentations and Consulting on Primavera P6 and Microsoft Project 2010 across Australia.

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