The Oracle Primavera P6 Project Management module is comprehensive, scalable, multi- project planning and control software, built on Oracle or Microsoft SQL databases for organization-wide project management. Primavera P6 Enterprise Project Portfolio Management is an integrated project portfolio management (PPM) solution comprising role-specific functionality to satisfy each team member’s needs, responsibilities and skills.
The Primavera P6 suite uses a standard windows interface, client/server architecture, web-enabled technology, and a stand-alone or network-based database. It provides a single solution for managing projects of any size, adapts to various levels of complexities within a project, and intelligently scales to meet the needs of various roles.
The components and features of Primavera P6 are discussed in this tutorial with appropriate screenshots.
1. Starting the Project Management module
Click Start (in windows), then choose All Programs – Oracle – Primavera P6 – Project Management. Log in by entering valid login name and password.
Before using the module, you must enter a valid login name and password.
Use the optional welcome dialog box to create a new project, open an existing project, open the last opened project, or open only global data (EPS, projects, roles, resources, calendars, etc.).
Selecting and modifying a portfolio:
Select a portfolio to view a group of projects that have common characteristics. A portfolio can contain any number of projects. Choose File – Select Project Portfolio. Select a portfolio. Use the Project Portfolios dialog box to view and change general information about the selected portfolio. You can also add and delete portfolios. Choose Enterprise – Project Portfolios to set up project portfolios. The top portion of the Project Portfolios dialog box contains information about all available portfolios, and the lower portion is divided into two tabs that display specific information about a selected portfolio.
2. The Work Space
As you first open a project, the Home workspace displays the main functions available in the module. For instance, click Activities to focus on activity data and customize layouts. The workspace for each main window consists of a menu bar, navigation bar, directory bar, toolbar, and command bar. Use the toolbar to quickly access options that pertain to the window displayed and to change the look of your layout.
The directory & navigation bar:
Use the directory to display windows quickly. Choose View – Toolbars – Directory, to display or hide the directory bar. To display or hide directory bar button text, choose View – Toolbars and Directory Button Text.
Similarly, use the navigation bar to move between open windows. You can also use the navigation bar to display and hide the directory and open Help for the current window or dialog box.
3. Layouts & Activities:
A layout is a customizable view of the project information. To customize a layout, you can choose from a wide range of project information, columns, colors, fonts and activity groupings and you can display these data in the top or bottom layouts. Each time you change the way data is presented in the top and bottom layouts, you create a unique layout. The module automatically prompts you to save a layout when you close it. To open a layout, click the Layout Options bar and choose Show on Top/Show on Bottom, then select the layout type. Within this layout you can define the things such as the Activity ID & Name, activity type, duration type and activity calendar.
In the sample layout below, you can view your project data based on the project’s work breakdown structure (WBS).
Activities are the central elements of work of a project. They are the lowest level of a work breakdown structure (WBS) and, as such, are the smallest entity of a project that directly concerns the module. If you divide activities into various steps, an activity’s primary resource is typically responsible for managing and tracking the progress of these steps, while the project manager is typically responsible for managing and tracking the progress of the overall activity.
Use the Activities window to create, view, and modify activities for the open project. The Activities window can be divided into upper and lower layouts. Activities represent work that must take place in a determined amount of time. Use the Activity Table or Activity Network layouts to add activities and build your projects. Customize the layouts to suit your requirements. Choose Project – Activities, to display the Activities window.
Gantt Chart provides a graphical display of activity progress over the course of the project. You can customize Gantt Chart bars, colors, labels, and symbols. Activity UsageSpreadsheet displays units, costs, or earned value data by activity over time. Use this type of layout to review per period and rolled up activity resource/cost data. The Activity Usage Spreadsheet is displayed in the top and bottom layouts.
To add an activity to a project, use the Activity Table and Gantt Chart, or Activity Network. According to your user preferences, the New Activity wizard may start to help you add an activity. To add an activity, select an activity within the group to which you want to add a new activity, then click Add. The new activity is placed according to the sorting options selected for the layout.
After Activity IDs are established, sometimes you may need to renumber them. For instance, if a project changes in scope, you are supposed to renumber selected Activity IDs to reflect a new sequence. To keep a project’s activities in synchronous with its baselines, when you renumber Activity IDs in the current project, you may also apply the renumbering to Activity IDs in all of its baselines.
Thus, this tutorial introduces key concepts of Oracle Primavera P6 and explains the basic tasks such as selecting & modifying a portfolio, functions of workspace and the details of layouts & activities.
Thanks to Satish, one of our contributing writers, for this great tutorial.