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Sunday, 1 March 2009

‘Light Weight’ PWA Projects Vs Microsoft Project Plans

Proposals and Activity Plans in PWA are sometime referred to as ‘light weight’ projects. See below some information to clarify the use case of this feature. Hope this helps.

Use Case Scenario

Light Weight Project functionality is used for ‘broad brush’ initial planning which is then promoted to a project pro plan for further detailed planning, if and when required. These ‘simple’ projects can be used for initial planning and also for capturing timesheet actuals say for operational type activities. If when using MOSS, workflow can also be developed to provide some structure for promotion of ‘proposal’ type initial plans (by Business Managers) to Project Pro plans by PMs say.

Once a light weight project is promoted to a Project Professional plan for further development, there is no reverting back to its previous state, i.e. light weight project.

Light Weight Project Limitations

The following Project Professional functionality limitations are observed when using light weight projects (out-of-box functionality);

  1. Task level enterprise attributes cannot be assigned. Local Custom Fields are also not supported.
  2. Single resource assignment per task
  3. Limited dependency management. Only FS dependency supported.
  4. Limit of 100 task per project.
  5. Calendars. Only Standard Enterprise Calendar is used for Project and Tasks
  6. Resource Cost Rate Table Assignment is set to default Standard.
  7. Baselines are not supported
  8. Templates are not supported
  9. Master Projects with light weight projects are not supported.
  10. Cross Project links is not supported
  11. Resource Work Contours cannot be set. Setting or changing the assignment contour type (such as flat, back-loaded, or frontloaded).
  12. Editing Timephased data (cost, work, etc) is not supported
  13. Calculating variance and earned value are not supported.
  14. Interactive scheduling is not supported.
  15. Custom definition of work breakdown structure (WBS) code mask is not supported.
  16. Saving and Manipulating data in local projects (.mpp files). For example;
    • -defining cost rate tables or availability contours for local resources
    • -printing and emailing project file to external users