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Microsoft Project 2013: The Missing Manual by Bonnie Biafore

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Chapter 10. Setting Up a Project Budget

Projects cost money. Whether you’re planning a small department retreat or building a new airport, the project’s budget will be a key factor in the planning and managing decisions you make.

The budget is a benchmark—a line in the sand that project costs should not overstep. Initially, the cost of your project is the total of all your forecasted costs for scheduled tasks and their assigned resources. Once the project begins and you start tracking progress on tasks, Project adjusts these forecasts to reflect actual and remaining work and costs. One of your jobs as project manager is to make sure project costs don’t exceed your allocated budget.

This chapter starts with a brief introduction to some methods that organizations use to develop project budgets. You’ll focus on setting up your project so Project calculates costs appropriately—for example, identifying resource costs as well as any additional costs associated with tasks. With this cost and budget information in place, you can analyze whether your project is within budget or in need of belt-tightening.

This chapter also explains how to look at project costs from different points of view, depending on the level of detail you want. You’ll learn how to compare project costs against your budget using the budget resource feature. And in case Project gives you bad (but realistic) news that costs are outrunning the budget, this chapter provides specific cost-cutting measures you can pull from your ...

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