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Project 2010 For Dummies® by Nancy Muir

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Chapter 14

A Project with a View: Observing Progress

In This Chapter

Seeing what your progress looks like with indicators and task bars

Seeing progress from various Project views

Examining cost and time variances

Understanding earned value

Modifying calculation options

Some people use Project just to paint a pretty picture of what their project will entail and then put the plan in a drawer. That’s a mistake. After you enter all your project data, save a baseline, and then track actual activity on your project, you get an amazing array of information back from Project that helps you to stay on time and on budget.

After you track some actual activity on tasks, Project allows you to view baseline estimates right alongside your real-time plan. Project alerts you to tasks that are running late and also shows how the critical path shifts over time.

Project also provides detailed budget information. In fact, the information that you can get about your costs may just make your accounting department’s heart sing. The information is detailed and uses terms that accountants love (such as earned value, cost variance, and budgeted cost of work performed, all translated in a later section of this chapter).

So keep that project file close at hand — and take a look at how Project can make you the most informed project manager in town.

Seeing Where Tasks Stand

You diligently entered resource work hours on tasks, recorded the percentage of progress on tasks, and entered fixed costs. Now what? ...

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