Chapter Meeting 12/20/2014 – Panel Discussion on Microsoft Project

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JaykumarParticipant Speaks: Mr. Jayakumar T, CNSI

Be Happy! It was a good time that I had with folks who came from different work culture and quite a lot of amount of experience in Project scheduling method and usage of MS Project tool. Overall discussions were not deviated from the objective of the discussion, so I can say that scope delivered 100%. 🙂

ASAP/ALAP (Forward scheduling/Backward scheduling) concepts which was the starting point of the discussion went very well and understood about how its measured, important, when should we choose it,  where we need to do changes in in MS-Project to see the difference, (Adding lag, Change constraint type from ASAP to ALAP, changing predecessors).

Second point, what are the inputs we requested from the team members? Is that enough to measure the project schedule status and those inputs were effective and what are the key challenges discussed and it was very effective and People came to know the difference between % completion and % work completion.

Third one, Interesting and valid one to discuss and get to know the awareness of how to view the over allocation from resource usage view and discussed what are the straightforward fundamental need to follow from resource point of view while we allocated the resources such as 40hrs per week, Resource calendar, minimum two resources per tasks, shared resources, and so on.

Discussion went in detail and each one of us shoot different thought process towards this fourth point that was do we progressively elaborate the plan? The discussion was quite interesting one and finally understand that we do progressively elaborating:-P and we discussed fifth and sixth point as Resource optimization for a project and challenge in tracking.

The Six topics covered the best practices of project scheduling by using the MS-Project. Eager to learn and join these type of sessions in future.

Chapter Meeting 11/22/2014 – Bye Bye Spreadsheets. Hello Microsoft Project!

Click here to download the handout and click here to download the lab activity of this session.

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Participant Speaks: Mr. Guruprasad, TCS

The training on MS Project was something new to me wherein I learned everything new.  It would definitely be very useful to schedule my resources, WBS, completion of tasks on schedule and all.
I thank my friend who asked me to attend the training.
Thanks to the trainers for their awesome training and presentations. If possible,  a live project can be considered for training in all aspects of MS Project.

Chapter Meeting 10/18/2014 – Automating Microsoft Project: Power of Macros

Click here to download the handout and click here to download the lab activity of this session.

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Monish Murugu

Participant Speaks: Mr. Monish Murugu , Bank of Tokyo – Mitsubishi UFJ

Learning is always a continuous journey, which enables every individual to succeed. Monish Murugu, a banker was introduced to MPUG and since then the journey has been good and hope to be good always. MS Project, which effectively gives an insight to the world of project management and thus has excited me to learn more on the subject.

The topic “Automating Microsoft Project – Power of Macros” conducted on 18-Oct-14 by Mr. Sai Prasad (President – MPUG Chennai) and supported by Mr. Prakash K P (VP – Events, MPUG Chennai) & Mr. Suresh Kumar (VP – Communications, MPUG Chennai) was very informative and acquired some basic ideas of operations of macros in Project. The speaker explained every part of the info in detail and appropriating it various examples at the right intervals. The practical session was much useful and made my understanding more clear and strong. I and my friend (Mr. Prasanna – Saikon Biotech) found the session was very much interactive and ideas shared across the forum helped each of the participants.

The speaker showed some practical demonstrations on creating/enhancing macros and the crucial role, which it plays as a part of building the project. In certain segments, the speaker was little technical, however the learning was made easy to make sure that each of the participants understand by way of some practical examples and tasks were performed by each participants. The practical sessions at the flag end was very much helpful wherein macros was put to test and check every condition is being executed at the right way. Overall experience was good and hope to see more in the upcoming sessions of MPUG Chennai. I extend my thanks to the speaker (Mr. Sai Prasad) who presented the session in a lively and interactive way.

Chapter Meeting 09/27/2014 – Focus on Task Relationships to Focus on Smooth Execution

Click here to download the handout and click here to download the lab activity of this session.

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Chapter Meeting 08/23/2014 – Learn from MVP: Resource Optimization in Microsoft Project

Click here to download the handout and here to download lab activity of this session.

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Chapter Meeting 07/26/2014 – Tasks Configuration in Microsoft Project

Click here to download the handout and here to download lab activity of this session.

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Participant Speaks: Mr. R.S.Sundar , IT ConsultantI have attended the MPUG Chennai Event “ Task Configuration in Microsoft Project” recently.

The Speaker Mr. Harishankar Vaikom Mahadevan,PMP is introduced to the participants by Mr.Sai Prasad (President of MPUG Chennai Chapter)

This event helped me to learn the Task configuration,manual and automatic Task scheduling in Microsoft Project.The session is very interactive and practicing the lab activity helps us to learn even better

  • Task Creation and Task parameters
  • Task Scheduling
  • Task Summarization
  • Milestones
  • Recurring Tasks
  • Duration and Work Units Customization
  • Task Calendar
  • Deadline

Mr.Harishankar Vaikom Mahadevan,PMP explained the above topics and he is ably supported by Sai Prasad while clarifying doubts to all the questions raised during the session and in the lab activity session

The Lab had tasks – Analyze the defect,perform impact analysis, Perform and Unit test defect tix,

We learnt how to summarize the tasks, perform defect fix,.

I would like to urge and share the special purpose of attending this event. After learning the presentation, we are asked to practice the lab activity. This is very useful since whatever we learnt, we practice and use in the real world scenarios.

Thanks to the speaker, Mr. B.Sai Prasad, Prakash K P (Vice President – Events of MPUG Chennai Chapter) and Mr.S.Suresh Kumar (Vice President-Communications for MPUG Chennai Chapter)for their untiring efforts,making arrangement,we are able to learn and urging all participants to learn, take future sessions

Chapter Meeting 06/28/2014 – Manage Costs and Budget in Microsoft Project

Click here to download the handout and here to download lab activity of this session.

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HarshaParticipant Speaks: Mr. Harsha Vardhan G, IVRCL LTD. I attended MPUG Chennai India event “Managing Costs & Budget in MS Project 2013” on Saturday Jun 28 2014. Mr. Prakash, the VP of MPUG Chennai, gave an introduction to “MPUG India, Chennai Chapter” and introduced the speaker of the event, Mr. Sai Prasad (President of MPUG Chennai Chapter). The event was really helpful for setting up and monitoring financial part of the project. Before commencing the learning session, Mr. KS Srinivasan, who was the speaker of last month (on the topic : “Working with Baselines in MS Project.”) shared his experience and encouraged all the participants to take up some topic for leading the learning sessions that are being conducted every month. He added that by becoming a speaker one can learn the topic in depth and will be useful to the individual and the participants as well. After that Mr. Sai Prasad explained the following points:

  1. Know what costs are
  2. Know the resource types – people, equipment, facilities, cost resources
  3. Enter variable rates for people or material resources
  4. Set a fixed cost for a task or project
  5. Regulate the cash flow
  6. Display the original planned budget
  7. Optimize the project plan to meet the budget
  8. Baseline the cost information
  9. Control whether actual costs can be edited or automatically calculated
  10. Cost performance

Then followed the lab activity “try it yourself” in which the participants were formed into groups. They created a project and worked out tasks given to have hands on experience in their laptops. Then Mr. K. Siva Rama Prasad (Assistant Director, MSME-DI, Chennai) addressed about various courses offered by MSME. He appreciated the voluntary effort being made by the organisers of MPUG-Chennai Chapter for updating knowledge of the MS Project users. Thus the session concluded.

Chapter Meeting 05/31/2014 – Working with Baselines in MS Project-2013

Click here to download the handout and here to download lab activity of this session.

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Chapter Meeting 04/19/2014 – Ten Best Practices to Customize Project

Click here to download the handout and here to download lab activity of this session.

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Chapter Meeting 03/29/2014 – Setting Up Your Project Calendars & What is new in MS Project 2013? and celebration of 1-year anniversary!!!

Click here to download the lab activity of this session.

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Mr. K Vivekanandan received a memento from Mr. Jogesh- For facility arrangement in GR Mrs. Rajeshwari received a memento from Mr. Jogesh- For facility arrangement in GR Mr. Jogesh received a memento from Mr. Chandrakumar for presenting the topic Mr. Shanmugasundaram received a memento from Mr. Thangavelu for presenting the topic

Lab Activity Winners

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Harishankar V

Palaniappan T

Krishnamoorthy S

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Mr. Prakash K P received a volunteer recognition award from Mr. Arulanandu Mr. Sureshkumar S received a volunteer recognition award from Mr. Arulanandu Mr. Sureshkumar N received a volunteer recognition award from Mr. Jogesh
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Mr. Arulanandu (Chief Guest) received a memento from Mr. Rameshwara Balu Mr. Thangavelu received a recognition award for motivating his colleagues to attend chapter events, authoring MPUG articles and as an event speaker from Mr. Prakash K P

IMG_01251Participant Speaks: Mr. Suresh Kumar S, Grade Results, Inc. I attended MPUG Chennai India event “Setting up your Project Calendars & What is new in MS Project 2013?” on Mar 29 2014. Mr. Prakash, the VP of MPUG Chennai, gave an introduction to “MPUG” and introduced the speakers of the event, Mr. Shanmugasundarm, and Mr. Jogeshkumar Makwana. The event was really special for 4 different aspects:

  1. It is an event with two types of presentation by two different speakers.
  2. A lab activity involving participants’ interest.
  3. It is the 1 year anniversary event of MPUG India, Chennai Chapter.
  4. MPUG Chennai chapter offered a special concession in the MPUG Membership fee for the participants of the event on its anniversary.

First, Mr. Shanmugasundaram discussed how to set up the project calendars for various requirements of the project, as follows:

  • Creating and editing different types of calendars, namely Base, Project, Resource and Task calendars.
  • Changing working day to a non-working day and vice-versa in an existing base calendars; changing default and specific work times, in a base calendar, as per the requirements.
  • Setting up project calendars; assigning calendars to projects and tasks
  • Different calendar views; Month/Week/Custom

Then, Mr. Jogeshkumar Makwana, continued to discuss the New features in MS Project 2013. He discussed:

  • The enhanced user interface
  • Task path (indicating driving predecessor and driven successor for selected tasks)
  • New reporting features (indicating project overview in simple steps)
  • Enhanced Sync & Collaboration features (Sharepoint access etc)
  • Lync Integration (to stay in touch with members of the project)
  • Project Online
  • App Store.
  • New templates

Then followed the lab activity in which the participants involved themselves and won exciting gifts. Finally, started the 1 year celebration of MPUG Chennai, in which the volunteers of the chapter events are recognized and given appropriate gifts.

Chapter Meeting 02/22/2014 – Managing Projects of Projects: MS  Project 2010

Click here to download the handout of this session.

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IMG_0684Participant Speaks: Mr. Srinivasan B, Operations Manager, AURA Mediatech Services Pvt Ltd. I have attended the MPUG Chennai India Event on “Managing Project of Projects” on February 22, 2014. The session started as usual with the welcome note and the benefits of membership with MPUG and the same has been handed over to the presenter Mr. Thangavelu Sundararajan (PM from Wipro), having several year of experience in Project Management in handling multiple projects for his concern. Mr. Thangavelu pleasantly opened with a question “What do we think of “Managing Projects of Projects?”, “Where do we use it?”, and “How do we make sure we use it effectively and optimally?”. He then, stated each one with a real time example from his own experience and explained the same with some other examples in such a way that it would reach people in any domain of expertise be it  IT or Non IT professionals. The Key elements to know, understand, and to use in handling multiple projects:

  1. Sub Projects (Nothing but the list of projects we handle)
  2. Master Project (It is also a Project and their elements are nothing but Sub Projects. The subprojects are represented as summary tasks in the task list of a master project)
  3. Sub Projects can be edited and monitoring either individually or it can also be managed and edited thru the Master project. The point is, all the project files should maintained in the same location (drive/folders), otherwise, master project would get messed up.
  4. Creating and Maintaining Master Resource Sheet/Project (it is a sub project). This is something great, where, instead of creating a resource sheet under each project, creating a Master Resource sheet and maintaining it globally. By this, we can optimize the resource utilization across all subprojects.

The above master cum sub projects is useful for Project Mangers using Multiple Projects, Program and Portfolio managers, when…

  1. Project is Large and Complex
  2. To increase the effectiveness of the Organization’s planning methods
  3. Multiple Owners for the project
  4. Monitoring and Controlling specific functional areas, besides the overall project.

After the concept explanation/discussion session, we had a quick lab activity, where we have given a list of questions/trail points to explore and do it on our own. During which the help from the MPUG volunteers made us to learn some more new concepts and tip and tricks. It was awesome and my 25 mins of times went like a min. My sincere thanks to Mr.Thanagavelu, for presenting such a wonderful session for us. Please do keep up your good work and we are expecting some more sessions related to handling multiple projects using master projects. Last but not the least, the Organizer Mr. Sai and the volunteers, Mr. Prakash and Mr. Suresh Kumar in making this MPUG Chennai event a successful one. Hats off to you guys! Thanks SRINIB

Chapter Meeting 01/25/2014 – MS Project Tips & Traps

Click here to download the handout of this session.

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Participant Speaks: Mr. Suresh Kumar N, Grade Results, Inc. Image00001I participated in the MPUG Chennai India event “Tips and Traps” on Jan 25, 2014. Initially, there was an introduction about the “MPUG Chennai India” and the membership benefits of the same. Then, the session continued with “Tips and Traps.” The eight important tips and traps were discussed which we need, but never think of it.

  • Effect of Default Start and End time – We always use the date to mention the start and end of a project. This tip helps us to know that the default start time and end time of a project is 8:00 AM and 5:00 PM. Also, the usage of default start and end time were discussed.
  • Sequencing Summary Tasks – This tip helps me where to sequence the summary task and where not to link the summary tasks.
  • Resource works 6 hours a day – This tip helps me to assign two types of resources, the one who has 6 hours fixed working hours and other has to work 6 hours in a given time interval. The first is done as usual and the latter is done by assigning the resource with assignment units as 80%.
  •  Color tasks based on resource assignment – This helps me to display the task bars in different color for the specific resources.
  • Assign Resources to Summary Tasks – This tip helps me to understand how the MS Project treats the summary task and sub tasks so that I understand where to assign and where not to assign the resources to the summary tasks.
  • Change “Max Units” After Resource Assignment – Helps me why to change the max units and where to do that.
  • How to Calculate Planned % Complete at the Status Date – Using Mark on Track and the Formula given helps me to find the Planned % Complete Status.
  • How to Reset Your Views/Tables/Filters/Groups – This tip helps me to restore the default value for some of the project options using regedit. Also, got to know that project objects can be reset by the organizer.

Finally, we did a lab activity which helps me to register all the things in my mind firmly that I learned in this session. The tips and input given by you make me to work on MS Project as easy as pie.