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Quick Programming Checklist for Asta Powerproject and Microsoft® Project (MSP)

Creating an architecture, engineering or construction programme; or any other technical programme can feel like a daunting task. We have written down eight (8) quick steps that will help you to develop your programme when you’re scheduling in Asta Powerproject or MS Project. You can also use these steps for inspecting and auditing a programme.

1. Calendar

Depending on what type of project you are scheduling, you need to determine what project calendar is required. Is the project on 5-day, 6-day, or 7-day week? Or is the project running on a 24-hour or night-shift project calendar? What are the non-working days on the calendar – public holidays, shutdown days and rostered days-off.

Choose your project calendar:

2. Project Dates: Start, Delivery, Finish

You have to determine when the project is going to start or finish, depending on your client’s requirement. Powerproject has an option for delivery date, which can be your contractually obligated date. You can plan your project to finish before the delivery date.

3. Project Tasks & Work Breakdown Structure (WBS)

Enter all of the tasks and then sort them into the WBS using the summary tasks. The Gantt Chart view is the default view in Microsoft® Project and Bar Chart view is the default view in Asta Powerproject. You can enter the tasks into the Spreadsheet or draw the tasks in the Gantt Chart.

4. Durations

If you draw your tasks on the Gantt Charts, the durations are entered automatically. You use the mouse to draw the bar to the length of the duration of the task. If you are entering via the Spreadsheet, then you enter the durations into the Spreadsheet except for the summary tasks.  

5. Dependency Logic (Predecessors & Successors)

Once the durations have been entered, enter the predecessors for the various tasks. Check the Gantt Chart for floating tasks, i.e. tasks without successors. Floater tasks generally come from tasks with Start-to-Start and Finish-to-Finish dependency logics.

You can also link the tasks from the Gantt Chart in both Microsoft® Project and Asta Powerproject

6. Critical Path(s)

Ensure your critical path shows up. You should look for the near-critical path(s) as well. You can tell the software to register tasks with less than x days as critical.

7. Timescales

Organise the timescales on the Gantt Charts for your viewing preferences. This ensures you can present the programme easily to other users.

8. Formatting

Organise how your project will look using the formatting tools. You can format based on your preferences.  

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About the writer

Daren Maynard BSc (UWI), MSc (Warwick), PhD (UTS) MIISE, PMP®. works as the National Training Manager at Solid Support. He is an Industrial Engineer specialising in Projects Portfolio Management. In the past 15+ years, he has taught at all levels of education. This teaching experience has been concurrent with his project management experience.