Microsoft Office Tutorials and References
In Depth Information
Management expectations: Does management expect to see Basic
reports on a regular basis? Would they prefer that you use Visual
reports, instead? Do you need to get budget approval at various phases
in your project planning; if so, from whom? Are cross-enterprise
interests involved that require you to report to or get approval from multiple
sources? (See Chapter 16 for the lowdown on reports.)
Company policies: These include company work policies regarding
resource hours and overtime, the holiday calendar, how your company
charges overhead costs or markups to projects, and what information
can — and can’t — be shared with clients or vendors.
The Enterprise resource features in Project 2007 help you call on company
information stored on your server, such as obtaining a list of enterprise
resources, for consistency across projects.
Now you’re ready to sit down and start inputting a Project project! (Is there
an echo in here?)
Plan for Murphy
You know he’s out there: Murphy and his darn law! Most projects don’t
happen on time or on budget. This is especially true of lengthier and
more complex projects. Your job is to do the most accurate planning that you
can — and make prudent adjustments whenever a wrench is thrown into the
works. Project gives you lots of tools to do that. But beyond all the
automated features of Project, you can anticipate change by planning for it.
As I describe in Chapter 6, the critical path in a project is indeed critical.
Every wise project manager builds extra time, and even extra money, into
schedules. When the project comes in but a week late and $5,000 over
budget, only the project manager knows that it was really four weeks later
and $25,000 costlier than what the first schedule — the one with no
allowance for Murphy — reflected.
Add time to the duration of every task if possible to account for shifts in
schedule. Also add a resource to every phase of your project to pad your
budget just a bit to help you deal with overages.
Instead of a work or material resource, use the new Project 2007 cost
resource type to add a set amount to a task or phase. You can even name the
extra cost resource Murphy, if you like!