Join Bonnie Biafore for an in-depth discussion in this video Fine-tuning work resource costs, part of Advanced Microsoft Project.
- If you're tracking labor costs in Project, the "Snd Rate" field is a must. Besides the "Snd Rate" field and the "Ovt Rate" field, which is covered in another movie, you can also fine-tune labor costs with the "CostUse" and "Accrue" outfields. To check out cost-per-use, let's head to the resource sheet. I'm gonna go to the "TASK" tab, and then click the bottom half of the Gantt Chart button, and choose "Resource Sheet". Here we have the "Cleaning contractor".
Looking at the "Snd Rate" field, the "Cleaning contractor" makes $60 per hour. Suppose there's also a one time $50 charge that covers travel to and fro. That's where the "CostUse" field comes in handy. When we add $50 to "CostUse" and click away, what's gonna happen is every time the "Cleaning contractor" is assigned to a task, Project tacks on an additional $50, in addition to the hourly rate.
Let's see how this works. I'm gonna head back to the Gantt Chart. On the "TASK" tab, I click the top half of the Gantt Chart button. Let's scroll down to the bottom of this project, and we've got the "Cleanup" task. When I click that in the table, now I can see the "Cleanup" task in the "TASK FORM"; the "Cleaning contractor" is assigned. To see the costs, I'm gonna right-click in the "TASK FORM" and choose "Cost". That displays the cost table.
Notice that the cost is set to $1010. Now think about it, we have 16 hours of work. So a two-day task, eight hours a day. So we have 16 hours of work at $60 per hour, That's $960. Then we have the additional $50 fee for travel, which brings us to the total of $1010. Now let's go back and look at the "Accrue" outfield. First I'm gonna click in the Gantt Chart view, and then on the "TASK" tab, click the bottom half of the Gantt Chart button, and then choose "Resource Sheet".
This time, we're gonna look at the "Plumbing contractor". Notice that the resources in this project have the "Accrue" outfield set to "Prorated". What that means is the cost is spread over the duration of an assignment. The "Plumbing contractor" is lucky; he gets paid at the start of his assignments. In the "Accrue" outcell for the "Plumbing contractor", I click that cell, click the down arrow, and I choose "Start". Now when I click away, the "Plumbing contractor" is set to have that expense incurred at the start of the assignment.
Let's go back to the Gantt Chart and see how that works. We're gonna scroll down to a task with the "Plumbing contractor". Here's "Rough-in plumbing". When I click that task in the table, down in the "TASK FORM", I see that the cost is $3840. What we want to know is: when does Project show this expense being incurred? We're gonna run a report to see when the cost shows up. I'm using Project 2013, so the reports are on the "REPORT" tab.
If you use Project 2010, the reports are on the "PROJECT" tab. I'm gonna head to the "REPORT" tab, and over at the right side of the ribbon, I click "Visual Reports". The report that I want is the Excel "Cash Flow Report". I select that in the list. The one change I'm gonna make is to change the level of usage data to "Days", because I wanna see exactly which day costs show up.
With that change made, go ahead and click "View". That generates the "Cash Flow Report" in Excel. To make is easy to see when the cost shows up for the rough-in plumbing, I'm gonna filter the tasks that are displayed in the report. I can do that on this worksheet. Up at the top left, click the "Tasks" button. When I want to do is turn on the "Select Multiple Items" check box. And here's the trick: I'm gonna turn off the checkbox that says "All".
Then I can expand it by clicking the "x" in the box. Click the "x" for the entire project, and I wanna click the "x" to expand "Utilities". That shows me the tasks for "Utilities", and we've got "Rough-in plumbing". Turn on just the check box for "Rough-in plumbing", and click "Ok". Now, the "Cash Flow Report" only shows the cost for that particular task. Now I'm gonna scroll down a little bit by clicking the scroll bar.
The timing is just showing up as "Q2 2017", so we have to make another change in order to see the date. To do that, I'm gonna head to the "Task Usage" tab that's down at the bottom of the window. When I click that, I can see the "Year" and the "Quarter", but what I wanna do is expand that so I can see the days. By looking at the table, I know that the cost for the rough-in plumbing is in Q2. I'm gonna click the "x" to the left of Q2 to expand it, and now I see the weeks.
Once again, by looking at the table, we know it's "Week 22" that has rough-in plumbing. I'm gonna click the "+" next to "Week 22" to show the days. And there we are; the cost comes in on May 30. And sure enough, May 30 is the start date of the rough-in plumbing task. There you see a couple of ways to track labor costs in more detail in Project.
Viewers will then learn how to customize fields and generate cool graphical and visual reports. Finally, the course shows how to share various customizations and configurations as well as best practices for managing multiple projects.
- Recalculating duration, work, and units for assignment changes
- Adding, removing, and replacing resources
- Defining part-time resources
- Setting cost rates
- Accounting for overtime costs
- Working with earned value
- Exchanging data with other programs
- Customizing fields and reports
- Sharing customizations
- Sharing resources and linking tasks between projects