You can apply different, customized calendars to individual tasks and individual resources. In most cases the base calendar is the calendar that describes the standard working times for most resources in your organization. As you know, the base calendar contains standard working times that designate the beginning of the work day at 8:00 A.M., ending at 5 P.M., and allowing employees a one-hour break for lunch. If you want to keep track of a resource's vacation, you can create individual resource calendars copied from the base calendar.
However, not all of your resources will work full time and they do not take a vacation at the same time. In fact, not all of your resources will actually work for your company. In these cases it is a good idea to assign a resource calendar.
When you have an employee who works part time, (for instance, a four-hour day from 1 P.M. to 5 P.M. or from 8 A.M. to 12 P.M.), this is the perfect time to create a new resource calendar to apply to only that particular resource.
To create a customized calendar for an individual resource, follow these steps:
- From the Resource Sheet, select a work resource.
- Choose Tools and then Change Working Time. The Change Working Time dialog box appears, as shown in figure below.
- In the For Calendar drop-down list, verify that the work resource to which you want to apply the new calendar is selected.
- Select a base calendar that is closest to the calendar you would like to create for the resource.
- Click Create New Calendar to create a copy of the calendar.
- Select the option Make A Copy Of _____ Calendar, and then name the new calendar appropriately and click OK.
- Click the Work Weeks tab and click Details.
- The Options dialog box opens and you configure the following: a) When the week starts. b) When the fiscal year starts c) The times the days start and end. Hours per day, week, and month
- To configure the calendar, select a day and then select Set Day(s) To These Specific Working Times. (Note that you can also select Set Days To Nonworking Time.)
- Using the From and To columns, type the start and end times for this day.
- Repeat these steps for every day of the week.
- Click OK. Click OK again to close the Change Working Time dialog box.
To create a recurring exception for the new calendar and resource, follow these steps:
- In the Resource Sheet view, select the work resource you used in the previous exercise.
- Choose Tools and then Change Working Time. The Change Working Time dialog box appears
- In the For Calendar drop-down list, verify that the new calendar is selected.
- In the Exceptions tab, in the Name field, create a new exception by typing a descriptive name. Press Enter.
- Choose a start and finish dates using the calendar in the Start and Finish columns.
- With the exception selected, click Details.
- Select Nonworking or Working Times, depending on what you want to configure.
- To set working times, type the start and end times for the exception using the From and To fields.
- Select a recurrence pattern: Daily, Weekly, Monthly, or Yearly.
- Configure the recurrence pattern based on the options given. For Daily, you can set how many days to create the exception; for Weekly, which days of the week, and so on.
- Use the Start and End After or End By drop-down lists to finalize the recurrence.
- Click OK and then click OK again.
Resource Calendar Alternative
An alternative to creating a resource calendar for a resource who works part-time is to assign the maximum units to a percentage equivalent to the number of hours that resource will work. For instance, a full-time resource working eight hours a day is automatically assigned maximum units of 100 percent. However, if you have a resource who works four hours a day, you can change the max units to 50 percent, as an alternative. That way, Office Project 2007 will simply assign that resource four hours a day to any task in which that resource is assigned.
Typically, at this stage in the project management process the project schedule should not be affected by any new resource calendars that you create because no resources have been assigned to tasks. Remember, the first step is to create the resources. The second step is to assign the resources to the tasks. If, however, you create or customize a resource calendar after resource assignments have been made, you will often notice a change in the project schedule to accommodate new working times.
With permission from Microsoft Press, this article content was excerpted from the book, Managing Projects with Microsoft Office Project 2007 (Self-Paced Training Kit for Exam 70-632).