New Task Type Required for 'Fixed Work and Duration'
There is a need for a ‘Fixed Work and Duration’ Task Type setting. This is required on construction projects to allow simple adjustments to both budget and forecast labour hours and duration without having to change Task Type settings.
Schedules on construction projects typically use budgeted labour hours estimated in another tool that need to be imported into Project to forecast labour requirements. In order to populate these Work hours against activities, you need to change all your tasks to Fixed Duration and then insert Work hours otherwise it will change the Duration. Once this is done you need to change all your tasks to Fixed Work to change your durations without affecting the budgeted hours. This is a two-step process that can be avoided if a task can have both Fixed Work and Fixed Duration against a task.
During execution you may also want to change your budgeted or forecasted Work hours, this can become problematic within the current version of Project. If you forget to change the Task Type settings back to Fixed Duration your duration will change when you modify the Work hours which is something you don’t want project to do.
The functionality for labour forecasting in Project seems to be available but without this change it isn’t worth the effort only to cause other problems in the schedule. Currently project managers would avoid populating labour hours into Project as it doesn’t work as they would expect, therefore use other planning tools or manual entry in Excel.
Therefore a solution is needed where you can manually modify Duration, Work or Units interchangeably without changing the Task Type setting. Please consider this request as if this can be implemented in Project it will remove the need for other popular construction planning tools which has this functionality.
Hi Robert, Thanks for the suggestion. I believe you are referring to the dropdown box as per the screenshot here https://ibb.co/btH8bF
Unfortunately this work-around doesn't do this option by default and requires the user to click it every time which is easy to make mistakes. If the Project team enabled a way to always modify the units over time by default then this would be helpful
If you have Fixed Work tasks and make a change to Work or Duration, Project will always ask you what you really want to do (ever notice the little green arrow appearing when you change a parameter?). Hover over the green little arrow in the field where you made the change and an exclamation mark box will pop up - click it.
If you for example decreased Work hours for a task, then it will ask you what to do with Duration; decrease Duration and keep the Work as is or decrease Duration as a result of reduced Work.
Hope this helps.
I am sure MS has been aware of this shortcoming for years now and i don't know why they are not solving it.
I personally have since moved to P6 and enjoying it eventually after years of struggling to master it.
I miss MS Project user friendliness though.