Executing Projects

Objectives

After completing this lesson, you will be able to:

  • Work with status management and release a project

Project Execution

John is shown once again.

After finishing all planning, scheduling, staffing and budgeting activities, the implementation project for the confirmation module is green-lit. John can now release the project and the first phase to start the execution process. In the execution process the hired consultants and developers will record their working time for the project to the cost collector. The actual costs and working times can then be analyzed in SAP Portfolio Management using the portfolio items and in SAP Project Management by transferring the working times to the project.

The execution of projects in Project Management starts with the release of the project definition. The release of the project definition is inherited by the first phase and its subordinate objects, such as tasks, subtasks, checklists, and checklist items. Subsequent phases are released gradually (and manually) in the course of the project when the previous phases are completed. However, you can also release tasks, checklists, or individual checklist items of subsequent phases even if the phase has not been released.

The release of tasks and checklist items is a prerequisite for the creation of confirmation data for these objects. You can enter the actual start date, actual end date, work carried out, percentage of work completed, and (if necessary), you can manually enter the remaining work for this task. If you use the time sheet for the confirmation, you can enter actual dates and actual work for tasks in Project Management. In addition, you can post actual costs to the respective controlling objects in Finance. When confirming checklist items, you can enter the checklist item result OK, Not OK, or Not relevant. If the processing of tasks and checklist items finishes, you can document this by setting the status to Completed.

The completion of a phase in Project Management can be linked to an approval procedure that ensures all planned targets of the phase have been reached. The approval procedure of a phase is triggered by the user responsible for the phase after completing all approval-relevant tasks and checklist items. The user responsible for a phase determines which individual decision-maker approves the phase, creates an approval document with all information relevant for the approval, and starts the approval. Based on the approval document, the individual decision maker can approve or reject a phase accordingly. The total approval of a phase and the completion of a phase is performed by the person responsible for that phase.

During a project, you can regularly create project status reports, which contain basic information about the current status of the project. For informational purposes, these project status reports can be sent to the relevant users responsible for the project. In the course of the project, if exceptions (threshold value violations) occur in structure elements of the Project Management project or in the linked objects in back-end systems, you can flag the structure elements in Project Management. Using alert management, the relevant users can be automatically informed by e-mail about these exceptions.

Project Release

Status Management and the Release of a Project

To record actual work for a project and post other activities to the project, project elements must be released first.

The various processing states of the project objects are documented through statuses. Whenever project objects are created, they receive the status Created. This status enables editing, master data maintenance, and planning of project objects.

The execution of a project, or a part of a project, is documented with the status Released. Status management documents the processing status and controls which activities can be performed next.

Available status values are shown for the various elements in a project.

The types of statuses are as follows:

  • System statuses that are delivered by SAP. For example: Created and Released.
  • User statuses that you need to define yourself.

Status types determine the business transactions that are allowed in a project once a certain status applies.

A Project with System Status: Released

The table-style processing of a project structure is shown. The project definition is released and this status is inherited on the lower levels of the structure.

The system status Released is a prerequisite for executing a project. It begins with the manual release of the project definition. This release is inherited in the first phase and its subordinate tasks, checklists, and checklist items. The above figure shows the table-style processing of a project structure. The project definition is released and this status is inherited on the lower levels of the structure.

The status Released cannot be canceled.

Note
Look at the following demonstration to learn how to release a project:

The significance of a release for the different project objects is as follows:

  • Project definition
    • Project is released for processing.
    • Project is no longer scheduled automatically.
    • Project type is no longer changeable.
    • First phase of the project is released.
  • Phase
    • Phase is released for processing.
    • Lower-level project objects are no longer scheduled automatically.
    • Phase type is no longer changeable.
    • Existing checklist references are resolved.
    • Lower-level tasks and checklists are released for processing.
    • Phase can no longer be moved and you cannot enter another phase before this phase.
  • Checklist
    • Checklist is released for processing.
    • Checklist type is no longer changeable.
    • Lower-level checklist items are released for processing.
  • Checklist item
    • Checklist item is released for processing.
    • Lower-level tasks are released for processing.
    • You can enter actual data for the checklist item.
  • Task
    • Task is released for processing.
    • Task type is no longer changeable.
    • Subordinate tasks are released for processing.
    • You can enter actual data for the tasks.
Hint

You can manually release tasks and checklists before releasing a phase.

The first phase of a project is released through the project definition's release. You can release the next phase of the project when the preceding phase is approved. Depending on the phase type settings, other system behavior is also possible.

Approval is documented by using the following statuses:

  • For Approval
  • Approval Granted
  • Approval Rejected

The approval process exists only for phases. After the approval and completion of a phase, you can no longer change the phase or the subordinate project elements.

During execution, tasks can receive the In Process status. It documents a task that has commenced but not yet been completed.

When a project definition, phase, or task is completed successfully, this is documented with the Closed status. Once the Closed status has been achieved, the project objects cannot be changed. However, you can reset the status if needed.

If a checklist or a checklist item is completed successfully, this is documented by the status Finished.

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