Author: Tom Henry

Tom Henry is the PPM Practice Manager at Projility, where he leads a team of experienced project and portfolio management consultants in making clients more adept, productive and profitable. Tom has been involved with PPM since graduating from Bournemouth University in the United Kingdom, working first in London and then moving to the United States to further pursue his career. Tom prides himself on being able to understand his clients' needs and translating those needs into simplified PPM solutions. Contact Tom at tom.henry@projility.com.

Ideation Within Project Online

  Project Management Institute (PMI)® Professional Development Units (PDUs): This Webinar is eligible for 0.5 PMI® PDUs in the Technical category of the Talent Triangle. Event Description: Take your Project Online environment to the next level by creating a mechanism to capture all the great project ideas from anyone in your organization. Sort and order your project ideas to prioritize. If ideas are approved, automatically pull them into Project Online as projects! Presenter Info: Tom Henry is the PPM Practice Manager at Projility, where he leads a team of experienced project and portfolio management consultants in making clients more adept, productive and profitable. Tom has been involved with PPM since graduating from Bournemouth University in the United Kingdom, working first in London and then moving to the United States to further pursue his career. Tom prides himself on being able to understand his clients’ needs and translating those needs into simplified PPM solutions. Contact Tom at tom.henry@projility.com.   Have you watched this webinar recording? Tell MPUG viewers what you think! [WPCR_INSERT]

Advance your skills with Microsoft Project

Project Management Institute (PMI)® Professional Development Units (PDUs): This Webinar is eligible for 1 PMI® PDUs in the Technical category of the Talent Triangle. Event Description: This is a session for advanced users of Microsoft Project looking to take their schedules to the next level. I will be demonstrating how to make your schedule easy to read and Pop out of the screen, how to export data from your schedule for distribution, how to use the timeline in ways you have never done before, how to use some complex views to get to access to the data you need and much more. Presenter Info: Tom Henry is the PPM Practice Manager at Projility, where he leads a team of experienced project and portfolio management consultants in making clients more adept, productive and profitable. Tom has been involved with PPM since graduating from Bournemouth University in the United Kingdom, working first in London and then moving to the United States to further pursue his career. Tom prides himself on being able to understand his clients’ needs and translating those needs into simplified PPM solutions. Have you watched this webinar recording? Tell MPUG viewers what you think! [WPCR_INSERT]

Updating Projects Progress with Microsoft Project

Start a free trial to watch the full training session and earn 1.5 PMI®​ PDUs Event Description: In this video viewers will learn how to update their project to reflect any work that has been carried out. Viewers will learn how to push out work that didn’t get started on time and best practices around these process. Presenter Info: Tom Henry As a the PPM Practice Manager at Projility, Tom, along with his team of expert consultants; implements, supports and trains organizations of all sizes and industries (including central and local government) on Project and Portfolio Management solutions leveraging the Microsoft software stack. He is responsible for deploying Microsoft Project, Project Online, Project Sever and SharePoint together with associated technologies and business processes. Tom has in-depth knowledge of Microsoft’s O365 platform and cloud based solutions such as Project Online. Tom received his BSc in Computer Science from Bournemouth University in the United Kingdom and holds multiple Microsoft product certifications. He is also one of only a handful of certified facilitators in the US for the Microsoft PPM Customer Immersion Experience (CIE) Program.

Microsoft Project Deep Dives

Project Management Institute (PMI)® Professional Development Units (PDUs): This Webinar is eligible for 1.5 PMI® PDU in the Technical Category of the Talent Triangle. Event Description: Project Planning using Microsoft Project [00:00:00 – 00:17:10] In the beginning of this video viewers will learn how to setup a project. This will include setting the Start Date, Calendar, Custom Fields and a review of the Project Options. Updating Projects Progress with Microsoft Project [00:17:10 – 00:44:25] In this section, you will learn how to update your project to reflect any work that has been carried out. Learn how to push out work that didn’t get started on time and best practices around these process. Resource Planning with Microsoft Project [00:44:25 – 01:08:33] Learn how to create Work, Cost and Material resources within Microsoft Project. Tom demonstrates various methods of assigning resources, the ‘Assignment Planning Variables’, what ‘Effort driven’ is, and how to make detailed assignments. Task Planning using Microsoft Project [01:08:33 – 01:28:28] Learn how to plan out your tasks within Microsoft Project. Tom walks users through the process of adding tasks to a schedule, the difference between Auto and Manually scheduled tasks, how to estimate duration and work for tasks, and how to add lag and lead times to tasks dependencies. Baselining with Microsoft Project [01:28:28 – 01:41:15] Prepare your schedule to be baselined! Learn how to baseline, how to clear baseline and learn about the different baselines available within Microsoft Project Presenter Info: Tom Henry As a the PPM Practice Manager at Projility, Tom, along with his team of expert consultants; implements, supports and trains organizations of all sizes and industries (including central and local government) on Project and Portfolio Management solutions leveraging the Microsoft software stack. He is responsible for deploying Microsoft Project, Project Online, Project Sever and SharePoint together with associated technologies and business processes. Tom has in-depth knowledge of Microsoft’s O365 platform and cloud based solutions such as Project Online. Tom received his BSc in Computer Science from Bournemouth University in the United Kingdom and holds multiple Microsoft product certifications. He is also one of only a handful of certified facilitators in the US for the Microsoft PPM Customer Immersion Experience (CIE) Program. Have you watched this webinar recording? Tell MPUG viewers what you think! [WPCR_INSERT]

Tracking Methods in Microsoft Project Online and Project Server

There are three distinct tracking methods within Microsoft Project Online and Project Server. Understanding these practices — and how they relate to the way you plan your tasks — will help you choose the tracking level that adequately meets the needs of your project. Figuring Out the Appropriate Level of Task Progress Detail As an administrator, you may have noticed that Microsoft project and portfolio management (PPM) allows you to specify which tracking method you would like to use. The options are shown under “Task Settings and Display.” Deciding which method is best for your organization can be a tough and multi-faceted decision. To choose wisely, you need to know the three widely-accepted levels of detail that you can go into while planning tasks. They are: Schedule management. The least sophisticated approach, schedule management takes the duration of tasks within your project into consideration without paying close attention to the resources assigned. For example, if you have a five-day task, you’d want to know the progress of that task purely in terms of its duration. Work management. This level builds on schedule management by estimating the work associated with tasks. The term “work” can be defined as either effort or hours of labor. For example: For your five-day task, you have two resources working full time. The “work” for this task is 80 hours (based on a 40-hour average work week). Cost management. Once again adding a layer of complexity, this level also looks at cost. Based on the number of hours worked by each resource, you can monitor the cost of their effort. For example, for your five-day task, you have two resources working full time. With the average work week consisting of 40 hours, the total work for the task would equal 80 hours. If each resource costs $100 per hour, then the total task cost would be $8,000. Choosing your PPM Task Setting Once you have selected the level of detail that you want to go into when planning tasks, you can more easily decide how you will oversee your project’s progress. If you desire to do schedule management, the “Percent of work complete” method will probably work best for you. It simply monitors the percentage of the duration that is complete to-date. You can see in the image below that when 50 percent is added to the task, the overall task is marked as half complete. The only issue with this data is that you have no insight into how much effort it took to complete the task. You may notice that this tracking method is called “percent of work complete.” It is true; if you assign a resource to a task, then there will be an element of work involved with that task (see below). The only issue is the fact that with the Percent of work complete method, you don’t track the actual work completed by the resources — so this information is essentially irrelevant. If you want to dig a level deeper and perform work management, then you will likely want the “Actual work done and remaining work” method to follow project progress. It’s a great option because it allows you to observe the actual work completed on each task, and it also specifies the remaining work. By using this process, you can legitimately track the actual number of hours worked. Also, if a task takes less effort or work than originally planned, it’s possible to update the schedule with a revised work estimate. Finally, there’s cost management. Keep in mind that if you embark upon cost management within Project, it may open you up to scrutiny within your organization. If you’re going to use it, you’d better have accurate numbers. Because of this, we recommend you use the “Hours of work done per period” method. With this approach, you can follow the actual work completed by a resource. It’s typically broken down over time by the day. You can see in the example below that the Task Usage view is used to show the task, the resource working on the task, the Baseline work, the planned work (“Work”) and the actual work (“Act. Work”) completed each day. Now you may be thinking, “But you haven’t shown us any costs.” As long as your resources have a standard rate, you can see the costs in the Task Usage view by swapping out the “Base. Work,” “Work,” and “Act. Work” fields with “Base. Cost,” “Cost,” and “Act. Cost” fields. These fields will expose the costs for your project, broken down by day. If you think that you would never use the “Hours of work done per period” method because it’s too much work, we tend to agree with you. No project manager has the time to get into that level of detail for each assignment in his or her schedule. However, Microsoft PPM does have an answer to this: timesheets! A version of this article originally appeared on the Projility blog.

3 Easy Ways to Work Faster in Microsoft Project 2016

There are many things I point out to people attending my training classes to help them use Microsoft Project more efficiently. Usually, the first thing I’ll show students is how to adjust the Quick Access Toolbar. In this brief article I’ll show you three ways to update your toolbar to speed up your Project work. First, however, exactly what is the Quick Access Toolbar? It allows a user to add the most frequently used buttons from the ribbon interface to the top left side of the screen for easy accessibility. This figure shows what the Quick Access Toolbar looks like: Now, let’s go to my suggested additions. First, I recommend you add anything that you find yourself using daily or that you’re constantly searching for in the ribbon interface. During training classes I typically recommend adding the following: Scroll to Task This button lets a user select a task. Once you click the “Scroll to Task” button, the Gantt Chart will automatically scroll to the selected task, bringing it into view. However, this button is normally located in the Editing section of the task ribbon, making for a lot of clicks. Because I use this button all the time, it’s my number one item to add to the quick access toolbar. In fact, I rely on this button so much, I put it to the far right of the toolbar for even faster access. Cleanup Cache When using Project, you should clean out your cache from time to time. Unless you’ve done this a few times, you may have trouble remembering the process (File | Options | Save tab | Clean up Cache). Adding the button saves you the hassle. Publish It’s also important in Project to publish your updates once you’ve made significant changes, such as adjusting durations of assigning resources so that these changes are reflected within Project Web App. To encourage this behavior, make it easy by adding the Publish button to your Quick Access Toolbar. Also, I advise you to place this button next to the save button so that you get into the habit of clicking “Save,” waiting for the save to complete, then clicking “Publish.” How to Modify the Quick Access Toolbar Adding items is simple. Just right click on any button in the ribbon and select “Add to Quick Access Toolbar”: Or you can click on the Quick Access Toolbar drop down and select “More Commands…” From this menu you can select any command — even those not found in the ribbon, such as “Cleanup Cache.” (You’ll need to select “All commands” to find the Cleanup Cache button since it’s not listed in the “Popular Commands”). Below you can see the modifications that I have made to my Quick Access Toolbar: There you have it, a simple technique for optimizing your every-day activities with your favorite project management software. Got your own Quick Access Toolbar favorites? Tell us in the comments below. Image Source

Project Planning using Microsoft Project

Watch Baselining with Microsoft Project Project Management Institute (PMI)® Professional Development Units (PDUs): This short video is NOT eligible for PMI® PDU credit. Event Description: In this video viewers will learn how to setup a project. This will include setting the Start Date, Calendar, Custom Fields and a review of the Project Options. Presenter Info: Tom Henry As a the PPM Practice Manager at Projility, Tom, along with his team of expert consultants; implements, supports and trains organizations of all sizes and industries (including central and local government) on Project and Portfolio Management solutions leveraging the Microsoft software stack. He is responsible for deploying Microsoft Project, Project Online, Project Sever and SharePoint together with associated technologies and business processes. Tom has in-depth knowledge of Microsoft’s O365 platform and cloud based solutions such as Project Online. Tom received his BSc in Comput¬er Science from Bournemouth University in the United Kingdom and holds multiple Microsoft product certifications. He is also one of only a handful of certified facilitators in the US for the Microsoft PPM Customer Immersion Experience (CIE) Program. Have you watched this webinar recording? Tell MPUG viewers what you think! [WPCR_INSERT]

Webinar : Updating Projects Progress with Microsoft Project

  Watch Task Planning using Microsoft Project Project Management Institute (PMI)® Professional Development Units (PDUs): This short video is NOT eligible for PMI® PDU credit. Event Description: In this video viewers will learn how to update their project to reflect any work that has been carried out. Viewers will learn how to push out work that didn’t get started on time and best practices around these process. Presenter Info: Tom Henry As a the PPM Practice Manager at Projility, Tom, along with his team of expert consultants; implements, supports and trains organizations of all sizes and industries (including central and local government) on Project and Portfolio Management solutions leveraging the Microsoft software stack. He is responsible for deploying Microsoft Project, Project Online, Project Sever and SharePoint together with associated technologies and business processes. Tom has in-depth knowledge of Microsoft’s O365 platform and cloud based solutions such as Project Online. Tom received his BSc in Computer Science from Bournemouth University in the United Kingdom and holds multiple Microsoft product certifications. He is also one of only a handful of certified facilitators in the US for the Microsoft PPM Customer Immersion Experience (CIE) Program. Have you watched this webinar recording? Tell MPUG viewers what you think! [WPCR_INSERT]

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