Projects are thought to be "containers" of sub-projects and tasks. You want to set up a new project if you have a new group of people collaborating.
Projects are carrying permission information for the tasks below the project.
List of Projects
A complete list of projects is available from http://[YOUR_SERVER]/intranet/projects. Permission settings might prevent users from viewing or editing projects.
Find a Project
The quickest and most convenient way finding a project is probably using the ]po[ Full Text Search. A search box is located on the top right corner of each ]po[ screen.
Alternatively you can go to http://[YOUR_SERVER]/intranet/projects and browse or filter by project name.
Creating a new Project
To create a new project please use the Admin link "Add New Project" that can be found on http://[YOUR_SERVER]/intranet/projects. Depending on your configuration you might need to set some project attribute values first by going through a 'wizard' before seeing the main creation page.
A new project can also be created by cloning an existing one. If no clone link is available from a Project Admin Menu, please ask your System Administrator to allow cloning by setting parameter EnableCloneProjectLinkP accordingly.
Create new Project from Template
Project can be created using any existing project as a "Project Template". A link is provided in the side bar of a Projects main page:
A wizard allows a user to choose what elements should be copied to the new project:
Adding additional Project Attributes
It is possible to add any number of new dynamic fields (DynFields) to projects. For example, it is possible to add a drop-down field for the project’s Cost Center, or a text field to describe the project risk. For additional information see the DynField Extensible Architecture
Assigning Members to Projects
New members can be assigned using the "Add member" link in portlet "Project Members" that will lead to the following page:
You can either search for a particular user to added to the project or you can select one or more users from the multi-select box. USers can be added as "Project Managers" or "Full Members".
If users get assigned to subprojects or task, the system adds them automatically to their parent elements. This helps Project Managers of the Parent Projects to get an overview of all employees involved in all subprojects. Please do not reverse this automatic assignment. If you want to limit visibility or time sheet tracking on parent elements, please consider adjusting parameters PermissiveHourLogging and TimesheetTaskVisibilityScope.
Projects can be structured by adding Sub-Projects and Tasks to Projects. A link can be found in the sidebar on a Projects Main Page.
If this link is not visible, the user might not have the permission to create Sub-Projects or the creation is not allowed in general.
When to create a subproject?
To make the management of larger projects easier
If you want to delegate responsibility to a different project manager
If you want to separate access to information to different user.
Example: You probably do not want to let developers have access the contents of the "Acquisition subproject" which might contain sensitive contract and sales information.
In order to delete a project you need to set its status to "Deleted". Projects will be soft-deleted, which means they remain in the system but will be invisible. Deleted projects can be recovered if necessary.
Remove a Project
As an System Administrator you can also dump the project entirely from the system. Please see http://[YOUR_SERVER]//intranet/admin/cleanup-demo/ to get a list of removable items.
Please note that in some cases it might be necessary to resolve constraints to other objects manually to allow removal.
Only in few cases you want to remove (nuke) a project entirely because projects might be related to other objects such as logged hours. Removing them would lead to inconsistent data.
You can also use a shortcut to nuke a single projects by requesting (SysAdmin only):
Bulk Operations on Projects
Bulk operations on a project's status can be performed in portlet "Project Hierarchy"
Managing Project Task
Tasks are created within Main Projects or Sub-Projects.
Creating recurring Tasks
This feature is not yet available in ]po[. Please contact us to inquire for sponsored development.
Tasks are associated with three different measures of time:
The PMs estimate how long it will take to complete the task
How many hours can be billed to a customer.
The actually spent number of hours logged via the Timesheet module.
The Cost Center field is pre-set with the Cost Center the current user is assigned to.
Tasks are associated with a single type of service ("material"). Materials are linked with the price list module, so that you can specifiy a price per customer and material.
Tasks are the base for Gantt scheduling algorithms. Tasks may depend on each other and may have different ways to be started and ended.
Comprehensive information about a task are available from the "Task Page":
Information about tasks are made available in several locations:
This list contains usually the top 25 Sub-Projects and Tasks of a given Project
Home Task List:
Component contains tasks assigned to the current user
Provided an overview of tasks across all projects
Project Planning & Scheduling
Project Planning using ]po[ features
a) Create a new project
b) Assign resources to your main project
c) Create tasks within you project/sub-project and set task attributes such as 'name', 'start/end date', 'Planned Units', 'Billable Units', etc.
Project planning and scheduling using 3rd party tools MS Project/ProjectLibre/GanttProject
Projects planned using Microsoft Project (MS Project) or other tools can be imported into ]po[. ]po[ also allows you export projects to MS Project, ProjectLibre and GanttProject.
Advantages of using desktop applications for the planning process are the following:
Project planning using 3rd Party Desktop solutions is usually more user friendly because of the tools drag&drop features and other amenities a desktop application can provide best
Project Managers can keep their their tool of choice for Project Management but the organization can benefit at the same time from a central project repository without the need to purchase additional licenses from Microsoft.
]po[ provides basic Gantt Charts in a Portlet Component on the Projects Main Page:
Clicking on the magnifying glass icon you'll get an exclusive view on a separate page:
Further clicks on the icon provide you with more detailed information down to Year/Quarter/Month and Day.
For better results simply export the project to either MS Project, GanttLibre or GanttProject and create a Gantt Chart from these applications. We are currently working on a AJAX based Gantt Editor to be released in Spring 2014.
A typical ]po[ configuration implements Milestones as (Sub-) Projects. To set a project as a "Milestone Project", set its type to: "Milestone".
All activities that need to be conducted for a milestone will become 'Tasks' of this project. Milestones imported from MS Project and other 3td part tools are marked as 'Milestone' in the projects attributes.
http://[YOUR_SERVER]/intranet-milestone/ provides an overview about late, current and future milestones
Mail Integrations allows the assignment of emails to Project. For additional information see Mail Integration
Project Risk Management
Managing Project Risks
Project Risks are managed using Portlet "Project Risks".
In order to to create an Impact/Probability matrix, the project attribute "Budget" needs to be set. The matrix shows the number of risks that exist of a given Impact/Probability combination, wheras the value for 'Impact' scale is calculated as the ratio btw. 'Project Budget' and 'Risk Impact'.
Creating a new risk
Multiple risks can also be uploaded from a CSV file. For additional information and a sample CSV file please refer to this page.
Each task member is given the possibility to report the level of completion on the projects "Task" page.
Overall project progress is tracked by the attribute "Percent completed" that is shown in the Project Base Data Portlet on the Projects 'Home' page
Operational Project Progress on a project level can be either entered manually or evaluated automatically based on the "% completed" values of the projects tasks belonging to this project.
Setting Project Progress manually
PM enter progress manually. Recommended for smaller projects to keep administrative overhead to a minimum
Automatic calculation of "% completed" on a "Project" level requires Parameter "AutomaticProjectAdvanceP" set to true. The value will be calculated when tasks attributes "% completed" and "Planned Hours" are set. Please note that manually adjustments to the "% completed" attribute on a Project level value are overwritten when one of the "%-completed" attributes of a child-tasks changes.
Determine Time, Cost and Budget Deviations
Several Views, Portlets and Reports are available to monitor the progress and evaluate deviations.
This View is available from the Projects Sub Menu and shows Planned Units, Billable Units, Logged Time and % Completion on a Project level.
The following Reports provide you with the key indicators on a Program or Portfolio level:
Projects are the base unit for financial controlling. A project should have a quote (external) or a budget attached that define the amount of resources available to spend. On the cost side there are "Provider Bills" (external invoices), "Expenses & Travel Costs" (small external expenses) and timesheet costs (internal costs). For an introduction please see the following PPT.
Calculate Project Margin
Calculation of a project margin is based on the following assumption:
Employee salaries is a fixed cost items, which his means that a costs of an employee hour does not vary among projects. However, sales prices for services provided by one and the same employee might vary from customer to customer. Those prices are managed in the customers price table and used to generate customer invoices. Project margin is by default calculated using the sum of invoices issued, minus the internal (Timesheet Costs) and external costs (Provider Bills, Project Expenses).
Creating financial Documents such as Invoices, Provider Bills, etc.
The generation of financial documents (Customer Invoice, Provider Invoice, Quote, Purchase Order) represents a considerable administrative effort in many companies. ]project-open[ provides a number of ways to accelerate this process by taking advantage of already existing information such as customer and provider addresses and already existing quotes or purchase orders.
For an introduction please see this PPT.
Creating Invoice from scratch
Let's assume you are a freelancer and you have just performed 3 days of training for a customer. You now want to write an invoice quickly and your ]project-open[ has been configured to allow such ad-hoc invoicing. You company is called "Tigerpond Inc.", and your customer is called "ABC Consulting".
Go to the "Projects" tab and choose "Add a New Project" in the page's navigation bar.
The screenshot below shows a sample project definition. Please see the Project page for a detailed description of the project fields.
Once the project has been created, please go to the "Project Member" plugin and click on the "Add members" link.
In the next page please select "David Developer" and "add as Full Member" with the "Notify" field enabled to add David as a project member and to allow him to log hours on the project. David will receive an Email saying that he is now a member of the project.
During the next days and weeks, David can log hour on the project by going to the "Timesheet" tab, selecting the day and entering his hours.
Once the work is done, you go to the project, select the "Finance" tab (of the project!) and click on link "New Customer Invoice from Timesheet Tasks"
You will then enter a Wizard that helps you to create an invoice based on five different criterias:
All reported Units
Reported Units in Interval
All unbilled Units
This screencast shows how to create a project and tasks in ]project-open[. Based on the logged hours an invoice will be created by using a wizard that guides the user through the process.
From V4.0 on ]po[ provides support for "Project Programms". "Project Programs" are a set of several related projects that are related to each other.
While the concept of "Parent-" and "Subprojects" always requires having the same client, "Project Programs" can be bundled based on arbitrary criteria.
In order to create a "Programm", a new Project of type "Program" needs to be created. In some distributions this particular Project Type would need to be enabled first.
Also the DynField "Program" of Object Type "Project" needs to be visible and editable for all users that should be capable to create Programs and assign Projects to them.
Project Approval Workflow
]project-open[ comes with a pre-configured Project Approval Workflow.
In order to activate this workflow you have to add the string "project_approval_wf" to each "Intranet Project Type" category (String1) this workflow should be triggered for.
(Please note that is not sufficient to set this value for a parent category)
Exporting/Importing Project Plans to/from 3rd party tools
The feature is provided by package Intranet Gantt Project. It should be pre-installed in all V4.x ]po[ distributions by default.
Project Plans can be imported and exported from/to ]project-open[ form the Projects Main page by all users with privilege: VIEW GANTT PROJ DETAIL
Best practice for round trips from and to 3rd party PM Tools
a) Create a project in ]project-open[
b) Assign resources to your project ("Add member")
c) Use the "Export Links" on the Projects Home and save the file to your local machine.
d) Use GanttProject/ProjectLibre/GanttProject and create additional tasks, dependencies and resource assignments comfortably with the "Drag-and-Drop" features provided by the 3rd party applications
e) Import the structure back to ]project-open[ using the link "Import from MS-Project, PL or GP"