Here is a book for every Microsoft Project user, whether you are new to Project or an old hand. Author Sam Huffman has filled this slim volume with gold nuggets!
Project is a powerful. It's full of useful features for handling all kinds of project management tasks. Huffman has provided tips so you get the most value from Project with the least effort. Which is exactly what you'd expect from someone who has been answering questions about how to use Project for over two decades. Sam knows the most common mistakes and the shortcuts that most people should be using.
Here are just a couple of nuggets:
DON'T rely on just the Gantt View. Sure, this is the default view when you open Project, but you'll never access the power of Project if you don't explore more views.
DO use Combination Views. Combination views allow you to see the Gantt view in an upper pane, while you drill down on task-specific data in the bottom pane.
DO take a step-by-step approach to entering Project data. For example, focus on entering the task names correctly and indenting the tasks so data rolls up correctly.
DON'T enter the start or finish date for a task! Huffman is adamant about this. Leverage Project's scheduling engine. If you enter task start and finish dates you effectively override Project's scheduling ability.
DO create a project resource sheet before assigning resources to tasks. Huffman provides advice on the approach for naming resources. (Should we name a team member or just a skill type, like "analyst"?)
My favorite tip is Chapter Two: Set Up for Success. Since Project is making many calculations for you, you want to be sure to select all the right defaults. Too many users have spent many frustrating hours trying to get Project to work for them - when they were working against Project! Just reading this chapter will make nearly every user more productive.
Does Microsoft Project work on agile projects? YES! The new edition includes tips from another Microsoft Project expert, Erik van Hurck, on leveraging Project's tools for managing sprints.
Microsoft Project Do's and Don'ts is slim, under 150 pages. It's filled with screen captures so it's easy to follow. And it's inexpensive! You can also get electronic versions that are convenient to read.
Microsoft Project Do's and Don'ts is published by MPUG, the Microsoft Project Users Group. Learn more or get your own copy today!