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The Importance of Project Expertise for Staffing Project Managers

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Finding and Acquiring Excellent Project Leaders

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This post will cover how to find and acquire top leadership talent rather than candidates who are merely technically qualified.  While it takes a multi-tiered approach to adequately address project leadership needs, talent acquisition is the first and most crucial step.

Traditional staffing companies use a wholesale approach of providing a large pile of “good-enough” resumes.  While sifting through some basic functional, on-paper requirements is sufficient for lower-level, technical roles, project leadership positions require a deeper dig. Project success relies on applying these functional skills in real-life scenarios where difficult trade-offs need to be made, which requires a unique combination of leadership, negotiation, collaboration, keen judgment, strong interpersonal skills, and situational awareness. (more…)

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Getting Beyond PMPs and Staffing Excellent Project Leaders

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Traditional staffing firms are tried-and-true at placing professionals into technical roles, but a different approach is needed to place project managers. PMP certified skills are enough to make a candidate qualified on paper, but the soft skills and nuances that allows project managers to fit in an organization and excel as leaders require expertise beyond most staffing firms.

A multi-tiered approach is necessary to find, acquire, and adopt talent into an organization to ensure success. (more…)

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Types of Variances: The Different Variance Fields in Microsoft Project

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In our last post, we covered the differences between Favorable and Unfavorable Variances. This post will cover the differences between the various Variance Types in Microsoft Project. The below summarizes the variances, how they’re calculated and where they can be viewed: (more…)

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Types of Variances: Favorable versus Unfavorable

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In project management terms, a variance is the difference between the anticipated state of the project and the actual state at a particular point in time. At the beginning of the project, when the planned schedule, budget, scope, etc. have just been calculated, the actual state and the predicted state are exactly the same. There are no variances. This is the point at which the project should be baselined.

As time progresses, the execution of the project may not follow the plan exactly. For example, if a task starts later than it was scheduled to start, there is a difference between the baseline Start date and the actual Start date for the task. The actual Start date is later (greater) than the baseline Start and the difference between these two dates is a positive number – there is a positive variance. As you can imagine given this example, a positive variance is unfavorable. In this case, where a task is late to start, subsequent tasks may also be delayed, and the recalculated schedule may show a Finish delay. (more…)

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Replacing Resources on Task Assignments in Microsoft Project

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In our last post, we covered several different ways of assigning tasks to resources. This post will cover the decisions around changing task assignments and technique on how to do it in Microsoft Project.

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How to Assign Resources to a Task in Microsoft Project

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The following guide demonstrates how you can assign resources in various ways and avoid some overallocations by using tools available through the Assign Resources dialog box. These techniques apply whether you are working with local resources or those from the enterprise resource pool.

We will cover Assigning Resources in the Split Screen View, Using the Assign Resources Dialog, Assigning Multiple Tasks to One Resource, and Assigning Multiple Resources to Tasks.

(more…)

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Assigning a Resource to a Task: Introduction

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Microsoft Project 2016 enables you to assign resources to tasks in a variety of ways. Resource assignments clarify responsibility for doing tasks and also help you to determine how long a task will take and how much it will cost.

This series will demonstrate how you can assign resources in various ways and avoid some overallocations, working with both local resources or those from the enterprise resource pool.  Read below for an introduction on how this works, or click on the appropriate post to follow the How-To guides:

Part 2: Assigning a Resource to a Task

Part 3: Replacing Resources on Task Assignments

(more…)

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Reporting Made Easy: Using the Copy Picture Command

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One way to use the communication power of the Gantt Chart view is to photograph it and send the picture as part of another document (e-mail, webpage, PowerPoint, etc.).

Below are the steps for doing this. (more…)

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Finding the Right Information in Microsoft Project

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The “trick” to using Microsoft Project effectively is first to know what type of information you are looking for and then to know which view you can use to display this information. A view is a set of formatting instructions that tells Microsoft Project what data to present and how to organize it into useful information so that each view displays a unique combination of project information. Once you are in the correct view, you can modify the display to view the exact information you require, as described later.

Views in Microsoft Project 2016 can be categorized into sheet views, chart and graph views, and form views. Each of the available views will provide different presentations of project information.

(more…)

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