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Durations after importing MSP 2003 / Primavera P6.2

7 replies [Last post]
António Faria
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I was importing to Primavera a project and I notice that durations in Primavera are different than Project.

Example (calendar is the same => standard (Saturday and Sunday non-working days)):

Microsoft Project
Activity 1: Start of Foundations (Milestone) - Duration: 0d
Actitity 2: Execution of Foundation - Duration: 2 months (2 months x20 days=40 days)
Activity 3: Execution of Steel Structure - Duration: 7 months (7 months x 20 days= 140 days)
Activity 4: Preparation works - Duration (10 days)
Activity 5: Ready to Erection (Milestone)- Duration: 0d

After importing:

Primavera
Activity 1: Start of Foundations (Milestone) - Duration: 0d
Actitity 2: Execution of Foundation - Duration: 40 days
Activity 3: Execution of Steel Structure - Duration: 160 days
Activity 4: Preparation works - Duration (10 days)
Activity 5: Ready to Erection (Milestone)- Duration: 0d

Note: When activities are defined in days, import is ok. When the activities are defined in months, some times the relation is ok (1 month = 20 working days) others, the relation isn’t (activity 3).

Replies

Dieter Wambach
User offline. Last seen 2 years 12 weeks ago. Offline
Joined: 15 Jan 2007
Posts: 1350
António
You’re welcome.
It’s very easy to get the meaning of the different %-complete in P6:
Switch on "Hint Help" (View --> HH). Then move the cursor into the table area --> right mouse button --> columns --> expand the group "%-complete" --> click onto the type you want to get information --> A window will appear with its meaning. Or study the ref’manual.

Hope this will help

Regards
Dieter
António Faria
User offline. Last seen 4 years 11 weeks ago. Offline
Joined: 5 Jan 2009
Posts: 40
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Hi Dieter

Regarding MSP manual, no, I wasn’t expecting that you read the topic from MSP manual. Still, when possible, I like to leave information to other users, to understand the context. Unfortunnaly, this forum doesn’t allow html posts, because if it was the case, I would underline just the important parts.

I really would like to explore this calculation process, but I think that my management doesn’t like that I "waste" so much time on little details. Some how, I have to avoid this problem and for now, I simple fixed all the activities with 0% complete and imported them with Primavera.

Thanks for your reply
Dieter Wambach
User offline. Last seen 2 years 12 weeks ago. Offline
Joined: 15 Jan 2007
Posts: 1350
António
Now you know the difference.
My proposal was you study the calculation of %-complete first, then you’ll understand the behaviour of P6.
Understand the concept of data date.
Assumed that you are using a 5 day work week, your data date probably is July 23. So if duration %-complete from start to DD is 24% the calculated end date will be calculated as Sep. 18.
Additional rules for import you can find within the template.
Did you really assume that I have the time and that I’m willing to read your copy from MSP manual?
António Faria
User offline. Last seen 4 years 11 weeks ago. Offline
Joined: 5 Jan 2009
Posts: 40
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The percentage complete that I was talking about in MSP is the one that is calculated (below described).
What I was expecting from Primavera was that it imports the activities correctly with this field or without this field. I never expected that Finish Date was affected by this detail.

----------------------------------------------

Percent (%) Complete fields

The % Complete fields contain the current status of a task, expressed as the percentage of the task’s duration (duration: The total span of active working time that is required to complete a task. This is generally the amount of working time from the start to finish of a task, as defined by the project and resource calendar.) that has been completed. You can enter percent complete, or you can have Microsoft Office Project calculate it for you based on actual (actual: Information that shows what has actually occurred. For example, the actual start date for a task is the day that the task actually started.) duration.

There are several categories of % Complete fields. Learn more about field categories.

Data Type Percentage (percentage field: A type of field whose content is a percentage. Examples include the %Complete and %WorkComplete fields.)

Percent (%) Complete (task field)

Entry Type Calculated or entered (calculated or entered field: A field in which the value is determined by Project based on information in other fields. Information that you enter in the field yourself overrides calculated values.)

How Calculated When a task is first created, the percent complete is zero percent. As soon as you enter actual duration, remaining duration, or actual work (which affects actual duration), Project calculates percent complete as follows:

Percent Complete = (Actual Duration / Duration) * 100

If the % Complete field is set to a value greater than zero, the Actual Start field is set to the scheduled start date if you have not yet entered an actual start date. If the % Complete field is set to 100, the Actual Finish field is set to the scheduled finish date.

If you type a value in the % Complete field, Project automatically calculates actual duration and remaining duration. Likewise, entering a value in the Actual Duration or Remaining Duration field automatically recalculates the other fields.

Best Uses Add the % Complete field to a task sheet when you want to display, filter, or edit the percent complete for a task.

Example The "Write proposal" task is scheduled for a duration of 10 days. The assigned resources have been working on the task for five days. Project calculates that the task is 50 percent complete.

In addition, you had estimated a duration of three days for the "Conduct client meetings" task. The assigned resources have reported that they are done. In the % Complete field, you enter 100. The Actual Duration field changes to 3 days, and the Actual Finish field changes to the scheduled finish date.

Remarks By default, changes to a task’s percent complete value affect the actual work value. Similarly, changes to the actual work value affect the task’s percent complete value. You can change this default and have percent complete and actual work independent of one another. On the Tools menu, click Options, and then click the Calculation tab. Clear the Updating task status updates resource status check box.

You can control whether changes to total percent complete are distributed through the status date or to the end of the task’s actual duration so far. On the Tools menu, click Options. On the Calculation tab, select or clear the Edits to total task % complete will be spread to the status date check box.

When you enter percent complete, Project might adjust actual and remaining work around the current status date. If you prefer, you can leave these tracking fields in the project as originally scheduled, even if completed work is shown in the future or remaining work is shown in the past. On the Tools menu, click Options. On the Calculation tab, clear the Move end of completed parts after status date back to status date and Move start of remaining parts before status date forward to status date check boxes.

To set the status date to a date other than today’s date, click Project Information on the Project menu, and then enter the date in the Status date box.

Percent complete indicates the status of the duration of the task so far. By contrast, percent work complete (percent work complete: A percentage value that indicates the current status of a task, resource, or assignment, expressed as the percentage of work that has been completed.) shows the amount of work completed on the task so far.

Percent (%) Complete (task-timephased field)

Entry Type Calculated or entered (calculated or entered field: A field in which the value is determined by Project based on information in other fields. Information that you enter in the field yourself overrides calculated values.)

How Calculated When a task is first created, the timephased percent complete is zero. As soon as you enter actual duration, remaining duration, or actual work (which affects actual duration), Project calculates percent complete as follows:

Percent Complete = (Actual Duration / Duration) * 100

This total percent complete is then divided and distributed across the duration completed so far.

Best Uses Add the Complete field to the timephased (timephased: Task, resource, or assignment information that is distributed over time. You can review timephased information in any available time period in the fields on the right side of the Task Usage and Resource Usage views.) portion of the Task Usage view when you want to display or edit the percent complete for a task for a particular time period. To see the total percent complete for the task, review the % Complete field in the timephased portion of the Task Usage view or other task sheet view.

Example The "Write proposal" task is scheduled for a duration of 10 days. The assigned resources have been working on the task for five days. You add the % Complete field to the timephased portion of the Task Usage view and see that for this task, 10 percent appears in cells for each of the 5 days, for a total of 50 percent. You had estimated a duration of two days for the "Conduct client meetings" task. The assigned resources have reported that they are done. In the % Complete field in the timephased portion of the Task Usage view, you enter 50 in each of the two cells.

Remarks You can control whether edits to total percent complete are distributed through the status date or to the end of the task’s actual duration so far. On the Tools menu, click Options. On the Calculation tab, select or clear the Edits to total task % complete will be spread to the status date check box.

When you enter percent complete, Project might adjust actual and remaining work around the current status date. If you prefer, you can leave these tracking fields in the project as originally scheduled, even if completed work is shown in the future or remaining work is shown in the past. On the Tools menu, click Options. On the Calculation tab, clear the Move end of completed parts after status date back to status date and Move start of remaining parts before status date forward to status date check boxes.

To set the status date to a date other than today’s date, click Project Information on the Project menu, and then enter the date in the Status date box.

Dieter Wambach
User offline. Last seen 2 years 12 weeks ago. Offline
Joined: 15 Jan 2007
Posts: 1350
António

Thanks for reply.

Be careful, not to compare "apples and pears". %-complete based upon what: duration, units, costs, ... Have a look into the ref’manual for the different types of %-complete. In addition, MSP doesn’t know a common data date for all activities, so this calculation sometimes is difficult to follow - in MSP2003 you can switch to common data date, but up to now I have never seen such a project.
July 6, 2008 seems to be a holiday based on the calendar you use.

Regards
Dieter
António Faria
User offline. Last seen 4 years 11 weeks ago. Offline
Joined: 5 Jan 2009
Posts: 40
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Abstracting of the dates calculation, I got now a different error.
When the activities in MSP have a "% complete" different of 0% or 100%, Primavera import it with a correct start date, but with a finish date much before the start date! :(

Example:
Activity: Ready to Earth Movements Start Date: 06.07.08 %complete = 0%
Activity: Earth Movements Start Date: 07.07.08 Finish Date: 05.10.2008 %complete = 24%

After importing
Activity: Ready to Earth Movements Start Date: 06.07.08 %complete = 0%
Activity: Earth Movements Start Date: 07.07.08A Finish Date: 18.09.2006 %complete = 24%

:(
Dieter Wambach
User offline. Last seen 2 years 12 weeks ago. Offline
Joined: 15 Jan 2007
Posts: 1350
António

Both programs have a table to calculate between months, days, ...
MSP: Extra/Tools --> Options --> Tab "Calendar"
P6: Admin --> Admin Preferences --> Time periods (for the whole database!) or under Edit --> User Preferences --> Time Units per units.
These factors should be the same.
P6 keeps all information on basis hours, for MSP I don’t know.

In addition take care of the calendar(s).

Regards
Dieter