We’d like to remind all of our users, especially those who have been with us for a while, to keep their installations of OnePager current. OnePager interfaces directly with components from Windows, Microsoft Project, Project Online, and Excel. Microsoft periodically makes updates to Windows, Office, and Project, especially if you are using Office 365. If you’re running an outdated version of OnePager, there’s a possibility that you could encounter issues that we’ve already fixed in a later update.
Many IT departments are very good about installing Windows Updates as soon as they come out, and doing the same with Office updates. OnePager isn’t always top-of-mind for them, so we occasionally see cases where the IT department stays on top of updates from Microsoft but forgets to maintain OnePager. This is akin to rotating the tires on your car every 10,000 miles but never changing the oil. The tires will be in great shape, but your engine might end up giving you a nasty surprise!
Most of our Microsoft Project users like having OnePager Pro automatically group swimlanes by one of the outline levels tied to the WBS of the project plan. For example, grouping by Level 1 Summary Name will create swimlanes based on the top-level parent task, whereas grouping by Level 2 Summary name will create swimlanes based on summaries one level lower.
But what happens if your WBS in Microsoft Project isn’t set up so that every outline level matches up to where you’d like to see a swimlane? Take this Microsoft Project plan for example:
Last October, we told you about the non-linear time axis feature of OnePager version 6.1. This new feature allows you to call out a portion of your timeline — making, say, the third quarter of 2019 wider than the second and fourth quarters, so the tasks and milestones from Q3 stand out. OnePager users had been asking for this feature for years, and have been enthusiastic about this new capability.
Many users prefer to plan their projects in PPM tools other than Microsoft Project. You might prefer Smartsheet, Primavera P6, Planisware, or some other tool. When using these PPM tools, unique IDs are just as important as they are in Microsoft Project or Excel.
Continuing our series on unique IDs, this week’s post will cover how to correctly establish and maintain a unique ID in an Excel spreadsheet that you are planning to use with OnePager Express. The focus of this article is for project plans that you are building from the ground up in Excel.
If you are using Excel to transfer data from another PPM tool like Planisware, Primavera, or Smartsheet, you’ll want to wait for our next article, which will provide specific instructions for each of those platforms.
When creating a unique ID in Excel, you want to use a field where all the values can be (1) unique and (2) consistent. It doesn’t really matter what you name the field as long as you adhere to these two principles. The unique IDs themselves can be any format that you like. Most users prefer a simple numeric ID, but if you want to create something different, you certainly can.
In our previous post, we covered the ins and outs of unique IDs with Microsoft Project locally on the desktop. This article discusses some of the differences in how unique IDs work when you are using Project Server or Project Online.
When you launch OnePager as an add-in to MS Project, you have the option to connect directly to Project Server/Online or to let MS Project connect to the server and then funnel the information back to OnePager through the desktop client. When you’re using OnePager as a standalone application outside of MS Project, all connections to Project Online and Project Server are direct and do not involve MS Project.
Continuing our earlier discussion of Unique IDs, we’ll turn our attention this week to Microsoft Project. Project generally does a pretty good job of creating and maintaining Unique IDs so that you don’t have to worry about it, but we’ll cover a few gotchas in this article.
Your Unique IDs in OnePager will vary in MS Project based on whether you are:
Using Project on the desktop or connecting directly to Project Online or Project Server over your network; and
Reporting on a single project or on multiple projects
Whether you are a brand-new OnePager user or someone who’s been with us for a while, you’ve probably seen the concept of Unique ID come up from time to time. If you haven’t stopped to learn about what a Unique ID is and why it is so important, this article is a great place to start.
We’re excited to announce that the US Patent and Trademark Office has recently issued OnePager a second patent on its conditional formatting technology.
If you’ve used OnePager for a while, but haven’t taken advantage of conditional formatting yet, now is a great time to explore it and see how it can help make your project timelines and Gantt charts more accurate while saving you the trouble of doing manual point-and-click edits.
Conditional formatting makes use of the data that you already have in your project schedule to automatically assign colors, shapes, borders, and more to the shapes in your project report. Here are a few examples of how our users leverage conditional formatting to make use of their project data instead of formatting their timelines by hand: