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Creating and Assigning Resources in Primavera P6

In project plans, resources can be people, groups, or materials that are utilized to complete activities.

In this article, you will learn how to add a resource to a Primavera P6 project plan, and assign that resource to one or more activities.

Most project managers would agree that a project plan is not real until there are resources assigned to the activities. When we know who is supposed to do what, we can also see where resources are over- or under-allocated, and begin to arrive at realistic estimates of the work that remains.

Like other project and portfolio management (PPM) tools, Primavera P6 supports resource assignments. However, they work a little differently than other PPM tools like Microsoft Project. This article will take you through how to set up and assign resources in your Primavera P6 plan.

  1. We’ll start with a simple project plan that only has activities, and no resources:

    Primavera P6 activities without resource assignments.

  2. To add our first resource, we first need to get out of the Activities tab of this plan. Instead, we need to hit the Resources... button (the person with the blue shirt) on the left-hand navigation bar:

    Getting to the Resources tab of a Primavera P6 project.

  3. This brings up a blank Resources tab, from which we right-click in empty space and choose Add...

    Right-click in empty space to start adding a resource.

  4. We get a new row in the table of resources with some default values filled in.

    Our new P6 resource with default values.

  5. Let's fill in some actual values here, so we can associate real people with the activities to be completed in our project.

    A reasonably complete list of resources for our sample project.

  6. Having added these resources, we next need to assign these groups to the activities in our plan. This can be done in several ways, but the easiest is probably to go back to the Activities tab of the project, and use the Details > Resources window. For each activity, we can add one (or more) resource from this screen by pressing the Add Resource button.

    Assigning resource groups to our Primavera P6 activities.

  7. Once we click Add Resource, a pop-up window lists all the resources available to us. We just click the one we want and hit the green button on the right.

    Select the resource you want to assign to this activity.

That’s all there is to it! One note, though: Start Milestones and Finish Milestones cannot have resource assignments. (This is different from Microsoft Project.) You can learn more about Start and Finish Milestones by reading our article.