Grouping Tasks or Resources with Microsoft Project 2000

Extensive new grouping tools enable you to categorize your project's task and resource data to obtain the exact information you need, in the exact format you require. Grouping tasks or resources in sheet views gives you access to summary (rolled up) information. In resource views, for example, grouping provides summary information that is unavailable otherwise. In task views, you can create a hierarchical group structure based on a single coding field when you use outline codes combined with grouping.

Microsoft Project provides several predefined task and resource groups. And, if predefined groups don't meet your needs, you can easily create a custom group. For easy access, you can save a custom group and display it with the other predefined groups on the Project menu. You can also associate a group with a particular view so that the view is displayed immediately in a grouped format.

Group tasks or resources by different criteria

You can organize the information in any sheet view by the task or resource criteria of your choice, without changing the actual structure of your project. If you use custom outline codes, for example, you may want to group tasks or resources by those codes.

  1. Display the sheet view that contains the tasks or resources you want to group.
    To group tasks, click Gantt Chart on the View menu, or click More Views, select Task Sheet, and then click Apply.
    To group resources, click Resource Sheet or Resource Usage on the View menu.
  2. On the Project menu, point to Group by, and then click the group you want to use to group tasks or resources.

Use grouping in combination with other ways of categorizing information

To categorize and display the information you need in the order you want, you can combine grouping with other organizing features, such as filtering and sorting. You can also group by outline codes, outline numbers, or custom fields. Grouping can provide rolled up summary information on each field in the group.

Group and filter

For example, you may want to distinguish between incomplete and complete tasks and focus on tasks in a specific time frame. You can do this on the Gantt Chart, by grouping by Complete and Incomplete Tasks, and then filtering by a Date Range you specify.

  1. On the Project menu, point to Group by, and then click the group you want.
  2. On the Project menu, point to Filtered for, and then click the filter you want.

Note     Switching the order of grouping and filtering will produce the same results. Combining filtering with grouping can significantly alter grouping summary values because only a field's visible values are rolled up.

Group and sort

For example, you may want to distinguish between material resources and work resources and review them in alphabetical order. You can do this on the Resource Sheet, by grouping resources by Work vs. Material Resources, and then sorting them by Name.

  1. On the Project menu, point to Group by, and then click the group you want.
  2. On the Project menu, point to Sort, and then click the field you want to sort by.

Note     Switching the order of grouping and sorting will produce the same results. However, your choice of Ascending or Descending in the Group Definition dialog box determines how grouped rows are displayed. Also, sorting only applies to the tasks or resources within each group, not to the view as a whole.

Group by outline codes

After you assign custom outline codes to tasks or resources, you can use those codes to group the tasks or resources into a hierarchy based on the hierarchy of outline codes.

  1. On the Project menu, point to Group by, and then click Customize Group By.
  2. In the Field Name box, click the Outline Code field you want.
  3. Click Define Group Intervals to set the outline code intervals you want to group by.

Note     This procedure groups the tasks or resources hierarchically by their assigned outline codes.

Group by custom fields

If you use custom fields, you can group by them to distinguish their directly entered data, calculated values, or graphical indicators from regular task and resource information.

  1. On the Project menu, point to Group by, and then click Customize Group By.
  2. In the Field Name box, click the custom field you want.

Note     Custom fields can include directly entered data, formulas that calculate the field's value, graphical indicators for data that meets specified criteria, or data entered from a value list.

Group by outline numbers

When grouping by outline number, you can more easily focus on outline phases that need your attention.

  1. On the Project menu, point to Group by, and then click Customize Group By.
  2. In the Field Name box, click Outline Number.

Note     It may be useful to group by outline number first, and then by other fields within the outline number structure.