MS Project Custom Dashboard Reports

MS Project Custom Dashboard Reports

Dr. George Gafencu, DBA, PMP, DTM

Over the years, I implemented several custom MS Project custom dashboard reports, and in other instances MS Office automation scripts. I wrote these macros Microsoft VBA, accumulating data in an Excel spreadsheet, or generating reports. In recent months I got back together with my core programming skills. I can package functionality as an MS Office Add-In written in C#/C++, faster and more reliable than the VBA. When it comes to practical applications, I was able to automate the data collection for a time-card system for a small business.

Additionally, I generate graphs and reports directly in MS Project via the scripting language. Generally, the problem with MS Project is that the tool is proficient at showing the data stacked vertically, but has issues in displaying the data in a tabular form, with dates contained in a line of text.

MS Project Baseline Execution Report

I created as well custom views via software to use in leadership reports. Figure 1 shows a custom report on a baseline execution to use in a PowerPoint presentation showing the status of the program. The features yet to implement in Deliverable 1 (the ones complete are filtered out) show baseline and forecast dates, and a variance. If data is in green, it is within the baseline time. An orange value would represent a small variance, and a red color would contain a significant variance. The implementation would include the add-in, a setup for the milestone to show, and a view listing a custom table and filter. The baseline execution view could be subject to integration with a database containing historical data, with the ability to generate the evolution of the project since its inception as graphs.

Baseline Execution Custom View
Figure 1. Baseline Execution View

 

MS Project Forecast Execution Custom Report

Figure 2 shows a different kind of custom report. This report shows the status of execution of the project, based only on forecast dates. The add-in could filter features completed programmatically. The green color indicates a milestone complete. Variations of this report could color the late milestones differently.

Forecast of Execution

Figure 2. Forecast execution report.

These reports require skills to develop. However, they do not require much time to implement, deploy, and maintain. In consequence, if you need MS Project or MS Office customized reports, Strategy & Innovation, LLC would be happy to design it and implement it for you!

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