Project Management

Determine the workload of each team member with Project Professional

It's likely that members of your team will be involved in several projects at the same time. Here's a quick way to find out how their work is distributed across the entire organization.

If you're a resource manager who's using Project Server 2002 or Project Server 2003, you need a way to see how your resources are being used across all the projects they're assigned to. You can view this kind of information within Project Server Web Access when you select several resources from the Resource Center and click the Availability button. However, you can select only 30 resources at a time. To see more than that, you can build a custom view in Portfolio Analyzer.

However, there's an easier way to get a quick view of how your resources are assigned to projects across the entire enterprise. Figure A shows the information available via the Enterprise Resource Usage View in Project Professional.

Figure A


Getting started
The first step in creating the Enterprise Resource Usage View is to open Project Professional. You will need to log into Project Server with an account that has the permissions to both open and save projects into Project Professional. (If your Project Server user account does not have both of these permissions, you should speak to your Project Server administrator about how to build this view or get the permissions.)

Once you are logged in, create a new project by clicking File | New and selecting Blank Project from the dialog or side pane that comes up in Project Pro. Next, click Tools | Build Team From Enterprise to bring up the Build Team For Projects dialog, shown in Figure B.

Figure B


From this dialog, you select the resources whose information you want to view, click the Add button to add them to your new project, and click OK.

Next, click View | Resource Usage and you should see something like the view in Figure C.

Figure C


When the resources are first added to the project, the data about the projects they're assigned to has not yet been transferred to this new project. That is why the Resource Usage view seen in Figure C does not contain this data.

Now, click File | Save to save the project into the database. Enter a name for the project and click Save. Once the save process is complete, you will see the data fill into the Resource Usage view as shown in Figure D.

Figure D


The key thing to remember about this process is that this project should never contain any tasks. It should contain only the resources, so that there is never any work associated with the project. It will only be a place to view information about other projects.

Once you've built the project, you can edit the view for a better look at what you resources are doing on their projects and how much time they have remaining for certain time periods. Figure E shows this view edited to display information broken down by the week (instead of by the day). It also shows the Remaining Availability field and the Work field. As you can see, for the week of 7/27 through the week of 8/10, Aaron Con is seriously overallocated, while Adam Barr is totally unused for those same weeks.

Figure E


To add a new field to the timescaled area of this view (the yellow area on the right), right-click there and select the desired field from the shortcut menu. You can add other fields not listed on this menu by selecting Detail Styles to open the dialog shown in Figure F.

Figure F


Here, you can pick from a large number of data fields that can be broken down by time, such as Actual Work, Baseline Work, Cost, Peak Units, and all of the Earned Value fields. You can also set the color for the rows of data in the view by selecting the desired field from the Show These Fields list and choosing a color from the Cell Background drop-down list. In Figure G, for example, we've set the Work field to yellow and the Remaining Availability field to green. This kind of formatting makes reading these views much easier, particularly when you have several fields being displayed.

Figure G


Once you have this view formatted the way you like, you can call on it whenever you need to view any of the complex, timescaled data about how resources are being used across your enterprise.
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