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Following this question, I have a hierarchical list of tasks. I have asked my team members to tell me how much time they need for each task. I also know the interdependency between those tasks. take the below example

tasks ↓ / people → Corge Grault Waldo
foo 1 5 9
bar 2 6 0
baz 3 7 3
qux 4 8 5

how can I allocate these hours to the specific tasks in Microsoft Project?

What I want to do is to allocate the number of hours each person requires for each task, and then add people's availability (they also work on other projects and there are many holidays to account for, plus there are long lead items...). Having all the above information I hope to have a timeline for the project.

P.S. I posted a similar question here.

1 Answer 1

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(Please excuse the German screen shots)

I did it this way with your example data....

Solution 1

1. Sum Up Work

Add an additional column to your table labelled Work and sum up the required hours:

tasks ↓ / people → Corge Grault Waldo Work
foo 1 5 9 15
bar 2 6 0 8
baz 3 7 3 13
qux 4 8 5 17

2. Add Column Work in Gantt Chart

Add the additional column Work to your Gantt Chart. Now add the individual tasks and in the column Work add the hours required to complete the task. When finished add the dependencies to your tasks.

Project will then add a Start Date and End Date based on the reuqired hours. You will have something similar to this:

Tasks, work and dependencies entered in Gantt Chart

3. Add Resources to Project

In the Resource Table view, add the three resources (of type Work) to the table. This will look at bit like this:

Resource Table with Resources entered

4. Split Screen Gantt / Resource Usage

You will have a screen that looks like this: Split View Showing Gantt Chart (top) and Resource Usage/Workload (bottom)

5. Assign Resources to Tasks

In the top window in the column for resources, assign the appropriate resources.
foo --> Corge, Grault, Waldo
bar --> Corge Grault
baz --> Corge, Grault, Waldo
qux --> Corge, Grault, Waldo

Project will equally distribute the workload between the resources. We have to correct this!

Split Screen Showing Gantt and Resources

6. Correct Hours

With the table we have at the beginning, correct the hours that the resources will be working on the individual tasks (bottom window) in the Work column:

Correct Work Hours For Each Task

7. Manual to Automatic Mode

Mark all tasks in the top windows and in the ribbon bar for Tasks switch to Automatic Mode.

  • Project will notify you that Waldo is overloaded.

Picture showing Waldo is Over-assigned

To correct this deduct one hour from the 9h and put that hour in the next day.

Waldo no longer overassigned

8. Going From Here

If you now assign different calendars or holidays to the individual in the Resources, then Project should take this into account and re-distribute the work/tasks.

I put Waldo on holiday on the 22nd in his Resource Calendar and Project shifts the whole plan:

Corrected Plan with Waldo's Holiday

Solution 2

This solution differs from my initial solution from step 2 on.

2. Add Column Work in Gantt Chart

Add the additional column Work to your Gantt Chart. Now add the individual tasks and in the column Work add the hours required to complete the task. Do not add a start time and do not add dependencies.

3. Add Resources to Project

In the Resource Table view, add the three resources (of type Work) to the table. This will look at bit like this:

Resource Table with Resources entered

4. Split Screen Gantt / Resource Usage

Split the screen to show tasks in the top window and resources in the bottom half.

5. Assign Resources to Tasks

In the top window in the column for resources, assign the appropriate resources.
foo --> Corge, Grault, Waldo
bar --> Corge Grault
baz --> Corge, Grault, Waldo
qux --> Corge, Grault, Waldo

Task without dates and dependencies but with ressources

Project will new equally distribute the workload between the resources. We have to correct this!

6. Correct Hours

With the table we have at the beginning, correct the hours that the resources will be working on the individual tasks (bottom window) in the Work column:

Check and correct hours in lower resource window

7. Add Start Date and Dependencies

Add one start date to your first task and the dependencies. Project will now magically assign the correct hours to the resources:

Hours and resources correctly assigned.

Good luck!

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