PM Central R2.0 Use Case Series: How to Use Maximum Unit and Assignment Units

SharePoint Project Management Central™ R2.0 offers improved resource management through task and project allocation. Project managers now can assign a percentage of the time that a resource works on a task or project, for example: assigning a resource to work on a project as little as 25%. This feature is available through the Maximum Unit field in the portfolio site’s Enterprise Resource Pool.

Maximum Unit in the Enterprise Resource Pool

The Maximum Unit field displays the maximum capacity that a resource is available to work on any tasks within a project during the current time period. The default for the Maximum Unit field is 100%. It is a Number column shown as a percentage.

Maximum Unit settings

Use the Maximum Unit field to display or modify the maximum units that a resource is available to work on a task or project. Edit the Maximum Unit field in the Enterprise Resource Pool.

At the Portfolio Site
Assign a value to the Maximum Unit when you add a new resource or edit an existing resource. This designates how much of the resource’s time they can work on any of the projects or tasks in the entire portfolio.

edit Maximum Unit when creating or editing resources

At the Project Site
The project site’s Contacts List also contains the Maximum Unit field. The information in this field is copied over from the Enterprise Resource Pool to the Contacts List through the Bamboo Resource Role Column. (To view the settings for this column, navigate to the project’s Contacts List. Then select List Settings > Columns > Resource.)

Bamboo Resource Role Column

Maximum Unit is copied over

The project site’s Tasks List contains the Assignment Units field, which represents the assigned resource’s allocation to the task. Remember that this information is first copied over from the Maximum Unit in the Contacts List.

Assignment Units in the Tasks List

In the Tasks List, the Bamboo Resource Role Column maps the Maximum Unit to the Assignment Units.

Maximum Unit is mapped to Assignment Units

The Assignment Units field is a Number column that is shown as a percentage. The default value is 100%. Edit the Assignment Units field in the Tasks List. (To view the settings for this column, navigate to the project’s Tasks List. Then select List Settings > Columns > Assignment Units.)

Assignment Units settings

How Maximum Unit Works With Assignment Units
The Assignment Units field interacts with the Maximum Unit field. If a resource is assigned more units than the Maximum Unit field permits, the resource is overallocated.

For example, in the Enterprise Resource Pool, Amy Adams’ maximum unit is 75%.

Amy Adams' Maximum Unit is 75%

Amy is added to the project site via the Contacts List. Her maximum unit is still 75% because the resource information is copied down to the Contacts List from the Enterprise Resource Pool.

A task is created and assigned to her. The Assignment Units field is 100%. (Note: Assignment Units cannot be assigned when a task is created. You must create the task first, then edit the task to assign a value to the Assignment Units.)

Amy's Assignmnent Units is 100%

This is more units than Amy is allocated for. She is now overallocated for this task.

To see if a resource is overallocated, you can navigate to the portfolio site’s Reporting tab and click the Resource Availability tab. The report displays the availability in red to indicate that the resource is overallocated. In the example below, Amy’s capacity or maximum unit is 6.75 hours each day, or 75% of a 9-hour work day. During the time period of 11/24/2010 to 11/27/2010, she is overallocated. The values in the Availability fields display how many hours she is overallocated in each day.

red indicates overallocation

Use Case
The Maximum Unit field allows resources to work on multiple projects with different maximum unit and working hours. For each project, the resource’s capacity is calculated based on the maximum unit and the project’s working hours. For the portfolio site, the resource’s capacity is based on the largest capacity in comparison among projects; the resource’s allocation is based on the sum of the resource’s allocation from all the projects.

For example, Amy Adams is working on two projects: Alpha Project and Beta Project. At the portfolio site, her maximum unit is 100%.

Maximum Unit is 100%

Alpha Project
Amy’s capacity per day is 8 hours. (Set the working hours in the project site’s Tasks tab.)

working hours are 8 hours

Her capacity or maximum unit is 100% because it is copied from the Enterprise Resource Pool to the project’s Contacts List.

Amy is assigned one task in Alpha Project:

  • Maximum Unit = 100%
  • Duration = 2 days
  • Task Assignment Units = 50%
  • Working Hours = 8 hours

Alpha Project task

Amy’s work in hours is (8 hours/1 day) * 2 days * 50% = 8 hours. View her work allocation in the project site’s Resources > Resource Allocation and Capacity Planning > By Resource Allocation tab.

work in hours

Amy’s work in days is (1 day/8 hours)(8 hours) = 1 day. (In the tool pane, change the report’s Values In value to Days.)

work in days

Amy is only assigned half of her capacity for Alpha Project (since her Assignment Units = 50%), so her availability for Alpha Project is Monthly Capacity – Monthly Allocation = 248 hours – 8 hours = 240 hours or 30 days. (Because her Maximum Unit = 100%, her monthly capacity in hours is 31 days * (8 hours/day) = 248 hours.) View her monthly capacity and availability in the portfolio site’s Reporting > Resource Availability tab.

availability for Alpha Project

Beta Project
Amy’s capacity per day is 9 hours. (Set the working hours in the project site’s Tasks tab.)

working hours are 9 hours

Her capacity or maximum unit is 100% because it is copied down from the Enterprise Resource Pool to the project’s Contacts List.

Amy is assigned one task in Beta Project:

  • Maximum Unit = 100%
  • Duration = 2 days
  • Task Assignment Units = 100%
  • Working Hours = 18 hours

Beta Project task

Amy’s work in hours is (9 hours/1 day) * 2 days * 100% = 18 hours. View her work allocation in the project site’s Resources > Resource Allocation and Capacity Planning > By Resource Allocation tab.

work in hours

Amy’s work in days is (1 day/9 hours) (18 hours) = 2 days. (In the tool pane, change the report’s Values In value to Days.)

work in days

Amy’s availability for Beta Project is Monthly Capacity – Monthly Allocation = 279 hours -18 hours = 261 hours or 29 days. (Because her Maximum Unit = 100%, her monthly capacity in hours is 31 days * (9 hours/day) = 279 hours.) View her monthly capacity and availability in the portfolio site’s Reporting > Resource Availability tab.

Beta Project availability

At the Portfolio Site
Amy’s total allocation in hours is 8 hours + 18 hours = 26 hours, or the sum of all the project sites’ total work in hours. View her total allocation in the Resources > Resource Allocation and Capacity Planning > By Resource Allocation tab.

total allocation in hours

Amy’s total allocation in days at the portfolio site is 3 days. (Before calculating the total allocation in days for all of the projects, first each project site’s total allocation in days is obtained dividing the working hours for each project. For example, Beta Project’s total allocation in days is (1 day/9 hours)(18 hours) = 2 days.)

total allocation in days

Amy’s overall availability in hours at the portfolio site is 279 – 26 = 253 hours. Remember that at the portfolio site, the largest capacity among all the projects is used. In this case, Beta Project’s 9 working hours are used to calculate the total number of hours in the month: 31 * 9 hours/day = 279 hours. View her overall availability in the Resources > Resource Allocation and Capacity Planning > Resource Availability tab.

overall availability in hours

Amy’s overall availability in days at the portfolio site is 31 days – 3 days = 28 days.

overall availability in days

 

The PM Central team is committed to making PM Central the most useful and beneficial project management and collaboration tool available for SharePoint. We welcome your questions and comments in the PM Central forum.

Interested in PM Central R2.0? Download a free 30-day trial or sign up for a free webinar.

Read more posts in the PM Central R2.0 use case series:


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