Overview: Track your time and task progress

More articles about: Project Online | Project Server

Project Web App enables you to easily track the time you spend on a project's tasks, and the progress of those tasks toward completion. You can also enter time spent on administrative tasks, like vacation, travel, training, and sick leave. Depending onyou’re your organization has configured Project Web App, you can enter time and task progress by using the same view, or by using separate views.

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Learn about time versus task progress

First, let's make sure we are clear on the differences between time and task progress. Time is the actual number of hours you spend working on a specific task. This is what you fill out on a timesheet to capture the number of hours you spent on different things during your work week. Task progress is an umbrella term for things like percent complete and remaining work. Submitting task progress is a way to capture a broader description of what you currently have done on a specific task, and what you think there is left to do to complete the task.

Let's look at an example to get clear on the differences between these two task update methods. You are assigned to a task that has a duration of 5 days (or 40 hours). You spent 8 hours on the task on Monday, 4 hours on Tuesday, and 8 hours on Wednesday, for a total of 20 hours. This is the information you would enter on a timesheet. However, when looking at the work you did from a task progress perspective, even though 20 of 40 hours have been spent on the task, you may not feel that you are 50% complete. You may think you are farther along, say 60% complete, or a bit behind, maybe 35% complete. When you communicate your estimated percent complete, this is your task progress. Communicating your estimated number of hours left on the task is also considered your task progress.

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Learn about advantages to using single entry mode

Site administrators can set up Project Web App so that team members can enter and submit time and task progress using two separate views, or by using single entry mode, where actual work is captured in one view, and submitted to both the task project plan (as task progress) and the timesheet.

Single entry mode eliminates the duplicate effort involved with submitting time and task progress separately. When you are using separate views to enter time and task progress, you have to do one of the following:

  • Enter the hours spent on a task in both the Timesheet view and the Tasks view.
  • Import the hours spent on a task from the Timesheet view to the Tasks view.
  • Import the hours spent on a task from the Tasks view to the Timesheet view.

While some organizations require this separation, the more streamlined method of entering hours is by using single entry mode. With single entry mode turned on, you only have to enter your actual work in one view, where it gets submitted both to the task project plan and to the timesheet.

 Note    When you are using single entry mode, task progress is entered as actual work, not as a percent complete. If you prefer to enter task progress as a percent complete, discuss the option of not using single entry mode with your site administrator.

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Set up time and task reporting

There are several things that the site administrator needs to set up in Project Web App before team members can begin reporting their time and task progress.

Task Description
Set up time reporting periods Time reporting periods are used on both the Tasks and Timesheet pages, and they must be set up before either page can be used.
Set up line classifications Timesheet line classifications are used to provide detail about project tasks. For example, you might have overtime classifications that include Holiday Time, Double Time, and so on.
Configure timesheet settings and defaults Timesheets can be configured in several ways that apply business rules to how users are allowed to track time. This is where you can turn on single entry mode, which is new in this version of Project Web App.
Configure administrative time categories By default, Project Web App provides three administrative time categories: Sick, Vacation, and Administrative. Your organization may have specific categories that meet your needs.
Configure task settings and display Task progress updates can be configured in several ways to meet your organization's needs.

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Enter and submit time and task progress

As team members work on tasks, they can enter the time they have spent on those tasks by using a timesheet, and enter progress toward task completion either in the same view as the timesheet (called single entry mode), or in a separate view, depending on how the site administrator has set up Project Web App.

Task Description
Report work on your timesheet To start entering time spent on tasks, create your timesheet.
Report the status of your tasks You can report your task progress on the same view as your timesheet, or in a view that is separate from your timesheet.
Add or remove a timesheet task (line) If a task that you worked on during a time period is not showing up on your timesheet, you can add it as a separate line.
Add a task to your task status If a task that you worked on during a time period is not showing up to report task progress, you can add that task to your status.

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Approve or reject time and task progress

Once a team member submits a timesheet or task progress, the next step is for the approver(s) to review what has been submitted, and then approve or reject it.

Task Description
Approve or reject entire timesheets If an approver has many timesheets pending approval, he or she may find it most efficient to approve or reject entire timesheets, rather than reviewing each timesheet line.
Approve tasks or timesheet lines Approvers can approve or reject individual task progress updates or timesheet lines.

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Applies to:
Project Online operated by 21Vianet, Project Web App for Project Online, Project Web App for Project Server 2013, Project Web App for Project Server operated by 21Vianet