Project Scheduling

Table of Contents

Project Scheduling

Schedule Setup and Maintenance​

Detailed Resources against Tasks​

Audience: Project Managers​

Process Overview​

 Set up your Schedule​

  1. Produce a Deliverable Breakdown Structure.​
  2. Create the Schedule.​
  3. Enter Task Durations.​
  4. Add Task Dependencies.​
  5. Assign Work Resources to Tasks.​
  6. Assign Cost Resources to Tasks.​
  7. Add Cost Resource Values.​
  8. Add your Project Budget.​
  9. Set the Baseline for the project.​
  10. Publish and Check-in your project.​

 Maintain your Schedule​

  1. Replace Generic Resources with Named Resources.​
  2. Set % complete of each task.​
  3. Reschedule the project.​
  4. Publish and check-in your project.​
  5. Maintain Costs.​
  6. Close the Project.​


  • Task Mode is set to “Auto-scheduled”.​
  • Task Type is “Fixed Duration”, unless you are scheduling with “Fixed Work”.​
  • Resources are NOT assigned to Summary Tasks.​
  • Select Publish before closing your schedule.​
  • Don’t forget Project Management time on the schedules.​

1. Deliverable Breakdown Structure​

Example below of a Deliverable (or Product) Breakdown Structure.  Deliverables should focus on the WHAT rather than the HOW, think of them as an end-product that could (theoretically) exist on their own.​

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​2. Create the Schedule​

Transfer the Deliverable Breakdown Structure to the MS Project Desktop schedule.​

  • To open your schedule in MS Project Desktop at any time, navigate to the Project Centre and select the Gantt chart icon beside the project and open project:
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  • Transfer your Deliverable Breakdown Structure to your schedule:​
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  • Use the indent functionality to make sub-tasks:​
    • Select the tasks to indent​
    • Select the Indent or Outdent Icon:​
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  • Set the estimated start date of your project:​
    • Project > Project Information > Start Date.​
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3. Enter Task Durations

Set all Tasks to be “Fixed Duration”

  • Select all tasks (excluding the Project Summary Task)​
  • On the Task Ribbon Select Information
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Select the Advanced tab of the Task Information dialog box and set the ​Task Type to Fixed Duration > Ok

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Enter the Task Duration

  • In the Duration field enter the estimation duration for the task. Some short codes for duration are as follows:​
    1. hr = hour​
    2. d = day​
    3. wk = week​
    4. mon = Month​
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4. Add Task Dependencies​

Identify and enter any predecessors (dependencies) between the tasks in your schedule. These will assist with scheduling your project.​

Task Starts after another task has finished.​

  1. Select a task that cannot start until another task is finished.​
  2. From the drop-down in the predecessor column select the task the must be completed before.  In this case the lumber cannot be purchased until the quantity estimates are complete.​
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Task Starts at the same time as another task.​

  1. Select the Task that could start at the same time as another task. ​
  2. Enter the number of the other task followed by #SS.  In this case the Tools Purchased Task (number 7) can start at the same time as Lumber Purchased so I enter “6SS”:​
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​5. Assign Work Resources​

Assign resources to tasks with estimate of work required.​

  1. Build your team for the project by selecting Resources in Resource Tab ​> Add Resources > Build Team from Enterprise.​
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  1. Select the named and/or generic resources ​
    to add to your project > ok.​
  2. In Gantt view switch on the Task Form in the ​
    details pane by selecting View > Task Form.​
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  1. Click the task to add resources to (NOT the summary task) and select the ​resource(s) in the Task Form.  Ensure your task is set to “Fixed Duration” (or Work).​
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  1. Either add the estimated work or the estimated % of time ​required for the resource during the duration of the task:​
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6. Assign Cost Resources to Tasks​

  1. Open the project in MS Project.​
  2. Add Cost Resources to your project by either:
  • Build Team from Enterprise (use Enterprise Resources)​
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  • Add Local Resources (View > Resource Sheet):​
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  1. In the Resource Sheet identify the Accrual Method. By default the accrual method is set to “Prorated”, ​
    these can be set to have cost realisation at the Start or End of the Task.​
  2. Assign the cost resources to the appropriate Task(s) in Gantt View:​
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7. Add Cost Resource Values​

Prerequisites:  Cost resources have been assigned to Tasks.​

  1. Open the project in MS Project.​
  2. Navigate to the Resource Usage View.​
  3. Change the Table data visible to Cost.  Select View > Table > Cost:​
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  1. Enter the Forecast in “Cost”, Actuals in “Actual Cost”.  Note that Baseline Cost will be set when you set the baseline:​​
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8. Add your project Budget (Optional)​

NB: If you manage tracking your Budget in Project Online in a Project Detail Page – please ignore this section.

Often utilising project Baseline will suffice for tracking your Budget.  You may use Budget to track, for example, your allocated budget.​

Prerequisites:  Budget resources should be setup in the Enterprise Resource Pool as Work Type = Cost and have “Budget” checked.​

  1. Open the project in MS Project.​
  2. Ensure the Project Summary Task is visible in Gannt View (Format  Project Summary Task).​
  3. Assign the Budget resource to the summary task:​
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  1. To enter the Budget for the project navigate to the Resource Usage View (View  Resource Usage View).​
  2. Ensure the Budget Cost column is visible in your view:​
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  1. Enter the Budget against the Project Summary Task:​
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9. Set the Baseline for your project​

Setting a Baseline (or snapshot of resources, timelines and costs) allows for richer reporting and tracking of your project.​

To set your baseline:​

  1. Select the Project tab > Set Baseline > Ok​
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10. Publish and Check-in your project​

Publishing is an often missed but important step.  You must publish your project for your changes to appear in Project Online.​

  1. Select File > Publish.​
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  1. Close your project.​
  2. Check-in = Yes.​
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​Maintaining Your Schedule​

1. Replace Generic Resource with Named Resources​

Method 1: Bulk replace

  1. Select Resource > Add Resources > Build Team from Enterprise​
  2. Select the Generic resource you want to replace from the right ​pane and select Match. All matching resources with that role will ​be filtered in the left pane.​
  3. Select the Named resource you wish to replace the generic resource in the left pane and select Replace.​
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Method 2: Manual Replace

  • Ensure you have added the Named resources to your team with “Build Team from Enterprise”​
  • With the Task Form visible individually select the Named resource to replace each Generic Resource for each task:​
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2. Set the % Complete for each task​

Either update the % Complete column by entering a number​

  • If not visible add the column to your Gantt view​
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OR utilise the quick Icons under the Task Tab:​

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3. Reschedule the Project​

Rescheduling the project will move tasks out that have not yet started to start after the current date:​

  • Select from the Project tab > Update Project
  • Set the “Reschedule uncompleted work to start after”: [Date]​
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  • All Tasks that haven’t started will be rescheduled:​
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  • 4. If you notice the % complete change that is due to an extension of the duration, the % of work complete will remain the same.​

4. Publish and Check-in your project​

Publishing is an often missed but important step.  You must publish your project for your changes to appear in Project Online.​

  1. Select File > Publish.​
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  1. Close your project.​
  2. Check-in = Yes.​
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5. Closing off Projects – important for timesheet users​

Closure happens via the project workflow, however it is good practise to ​lock the project for update – so that it removes the project from resources’ ​timesheets / stops them from entering time against the project. ​

  • Go the the ‘Project Centre’ via the left hand menu bar. ​
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  • Open up the closed project by clicking the schedule icon, to open in the ​
    MS Project desktop app. ​
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  • Insert a new column (anywhere) and start typing ‘locked’. ​
    Proceed to mark all tasks in this column ‘yes’. ​
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  • Finally, ensure there are no hours remaining against resources. Click on​
    ‘Details’ in the ‘Task’ header bar. This brings up task details in the bottom​
    half of the screen. ​
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  • For each task, ensure that any resources have no work​
    remaining – e.g. Zero hours. To do this, right-click in the ​
    details page and select ‘work’. ​
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  • Check through each task, and if there is any remaining work, ​‘zero’ this. ​
    Warning: Do not change the actual work, as this comes from timesheets.

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© Nonsuch PPM 2022

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