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MS Project Task Types – Fixed Work – Units – Duration

Upon reviewing a vendor’s Integrated Master Schedule, created in MS Project, I noticed something very peculiar. Where some tasks could clearly be marked as Fixed Duration, everything was Fixed Units.  I think there are two answers for this.  Either there was a misunderstanding about the work to be performed or the person doing the schedule needs some help understanding task types.  I believe working with MS Project can make your eyes bleed if you’re not used to it.  But if you’re armed with just a little information about task types, it can be a whole lot easier.

I would love to go into a detailed explanation about Fixed Work, Fixed Units, and Fixed Duration.  If I did, however, you’d probably leave my site never to return.   Instead, I found a very helpful video on YouTube.  Why go hunting for this stuff when you can just find it here?

About Derek Huether

I'm Vice President of ALM Platforms at LeadingAgile. Author of Zombie Project Management (available on Amazon). Novice angel investor.

4 Responses to “MS Project Task Types – Fixed Work – Units – Duration”

  1. February 14, 2010 at 6:55 pm

    Derek,

    Many project managers use Microsoft Project without even looking at the task type, the default task type is fixed units/resources.

    You may find a project manager wondering why MS project changes duration automatically after the PM has changed the work/effort.

    Scheduling software is the main skill of the project manager, yet many people do not make effort to master it.

    BTW, MS Project help gives a great overview about the task types.

    Thanks

    • Derek Huether
      February 15, 2010 at 8:32 pm

      Kareem,
      You’re certainly correct. I’ve seen PMs loading MS Project without considering the task types. That’s one reason I wrote the post. The Microsoft site really is a great resource but I thought a picture was worth a thousand words. If people really want to read about it, they can find it under Help and How-to at http://office.microsoft.com.

  2. February 14, 2010 at 1:55 pm

    Derek,

    Many project managers use Microsoft Project without even looking at the task type, the default task type is fixed units/resources.

    You may find a project manager wondering why MS project changes duration automatically after the PM has changed the work/effort.

    Scheduling software is the main skill of the project manager, yet many people do not make effort to master it.

    BTW, MS Project help gives a great overview about the task types.

    Thanks

    • Derek Huether
      February 15, 2010 at 3:32 pm

      Kareem,
      You’re certainly correct. I’ve seen PMs loading MS Project without considering the task types. That’s one reason I wrote the post. The Microsoft site really is a great resource but I thought a picture was worth a thousand words. If people really want to read about it, they can find it under Help and How-to at http://office.microsoft.com.

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