Saturday, August 11, 2007

How to assign codes to tasks that are not tied to the outline structure?

Last post (visit, we saw how WBS codes can be used effectively to number the tasks in your project. If you don't want the WBS codes to change, even if you move tasks around then use Outline Codes.  Benefit of Outline codes is, it is customizable and it is not tied to the outline structure of your project.

To define outline code,

1. Choose Tools > Customize > Fields. Project displays the Customize Fields dialog box.
2. Click the Customize Outline Codes tab.
3. Choose an outline code to customize and click "Define Code Mask …" button. This displays the Outline Code Definition dialog box.

4. For each level in outline, do the below steps.
4.1. Sequence: In the Sequence column, select the type of character that you want to use for each level of the outline code. If you choose Characters (unordered), Project inserts an asterisk at that position of the outline code.
4.2. Length of Outline Code part: Select the list box in length column and choose the length of the level of Outline code.
4.3. Separator: In the separator column, use the list box to select period (.), dash (-), plus (+) or slash (/) or any character that is not number or a letter

5. To restrict the use of outline codes to a specific list, click the "Edit Lookup Table …" button. This displays the Edit Lookup Table dialog box
6. Provide the list of values allowed for Level 1, Level 2, till Level N. Use the Indent button (right arrow) at the top of the dialog box to outline the levels provided and click on "Close" button
7. Click OK to finish.

In Gantt chart view,

1. Insert the "Outline Code1" column, to select (or) provide the outline code for each task.
2. You will see a list box arrow; if you asked Microsoft Project to restrict the outline codes provided.

Next post:  How to share views, tables, forms, reports, calendars across projects?

"Power" Quote:  Mastering others is strength. Mastering yourself is true power. - Tao Te Ching

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