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A Guide for Project Managers
A Guide for Project Managers
Lyssa Parisella avatar
Written by Lyssa Parisella
Updated over a week ago

1. Checking for Availability

The first step in planning a project is determining if your resources have availability in the prescribed timeline. In Runn, you can do this in a few ways:

People Planner - Group Utilization Charts

  1. Using the filter, select "Person Type > Person" to ensure you are only looking at supply and not unassigned demand as per placeholders.

  2. Using the filter, select Roles or skills that are needed for the project.

  3. Select a time period (Month, Quarter, Half, Full Year) and use the arrows to navigate to the approximate desired start date.

  4. Turn on Grouping, select Role or Skills, and the turn on the group utilization charts to get a high level view of availability.

Project Planner - Specific Team Members

Alternately, you may already know who you would like to use; instead of selecting person type and roles or skills in the filter, click on "People" and select the team members. You can also use Teams or a custom field to select the resources.

As above, ensure you've selected the correct date range and time period to see when and if these specific team members are available.

2. Creating a Project

In Runn, you can create projects from the Manage tab or the Project Planner.

From the Project Planner

Click on +New Project and complete the pop up with your project information:

  • If project ID is important, please include it in the NAME of the project for quick searching.

  • If you select your own company as the client, it will automatically set the project as non-billable.

  • You must select a client when creating a new project (this can be changed later if required).

  • Choose a pricing model: Time & Materials, Non-billable or Fixed Price

  • If you are not using any REVENUE numbers in Runn, please make the projects Non-billable. You will be able to track project costs and project hours only.

  • Choose a Reference Rate card (the internal rate will automatically be selected if you choose non-billable).

  • Primary Team is not necessary - if you want to assign a cross-functional team, you could consider creating a custom field for this instead and adding it to both People and Projects.

  • The emoji option on the right can be used to help visually denote information about a project (ie. flags for location, colors for statuses, etc)

  • Status is either Confirmed or Tentative. If you are scenario planning, please select Tentative.

🤩 Pro Tip: use a Project Template to pre-fill all information if you're often setting up the same types of projects.

PLEASE NOTE: If you have selected non-billable- all assignments will default to non-billable. If you switch this later to fixed price, the assignments will remain non-billable- you will need to change each assignment to billable. However, if you start with Fixed price, and switch to Non-billable- all assignments will become non-billable.

3. Estimating & Setting a Budget

Once the Project is created, click on the name to access the dashboard. From here, you can add a budget :

Learn more about estimates & budgets here

Pro Tip: Track non-labour expenses in the budget. Read more about it here.

4. Adding Phases & Milestones

To ensure assignments are connected to phases, add these next.

  1. Click into the Phases row. You can then drag until the end of the phase or click on the Calendar icon to set the dates of the phase.

  2. Add the name of the phase and denote a color.

3. Next click on the project name row to add a milestone. You can select an icon for easy viewing, add the actual milestone and add notes. If you are using this to denote when an invoice should be issued, consider add the amount in "Notes" section to make it easier to pull on the report. (However, please note that those with no financial permissions can see all milestones).

Pro Tip: If your phases and/or milestones are the same for all projects, consider using Project Templates as a starting point.

Read more on Phases here and more on milestones here.

5. Adding Project Members or Placeholders

If you have a resourcing team who fills all resource requests, or if you don't have a set project team, use placeholders when adding schedules.

Scheduling with Placeholders

Placeholders in Runn allow you to account for demand and can be very useful in identifying gaps between demand and supply. .

  1. Open the Project in the Planner, and click on "Add Person or Placeholder".

  2. Instead of selecting a specific person, click on the placeholder and select the correct role:

    3. Repeat this until you have all your project team members.

    4. Then click into the planner and add assignments for each member. You can use drag and drop option or simply click to get more option:

Effort: You can view this by day, week or FTE. In the day/week option, you can add can adjust effort using percentages- ie. They are working 60% of their week on this.

Work days: This is connected to calendar- increasing this lengths the assignment.

Total Effort: If you know the work will take a set number of hours you can denote this here. Depending on the number of days you allotted, Runn will calculate the average work per day/per month.

Phase: If you need phase reporting, please select the correct phase.

Non-billable: If this assignment is non-billable in a billable project, check off the box.

Repeat: This option is ONLY available when adding an assignment - but not when editing. Select it to get options for every week, every 2 weeks, every 4 weeks depending on the assignment duration.

Note: If you add a note, it will be visible when you hover over that assignment

Calendar: Click on this icon to set the assignment using the calendar or specific date options.

PLEASE NOTE: Weekend Assignments have to be added separately on the month view. Read more about it here.

Read more on Managing Assignments here.

Pro Tip: If the assignment is the same for everyone, right-click on it to get the clone option.

Read more about Managing Assignments here.

6. Using Teams or Specific Resources

If you know specifically who you want to use or which to fill the request based on skills or other parameters, click on "Add person or Placeholder" and search for the person or skills that is needed.

  1. You can search for names, roles, skills, or tags (custom fields coming soon!).

  2. Select one or multiple and then click on "Add Selected".

  3. Once they have been added, you can then assign them work as above.

Pro tip: You can switch people to different roles directly on this modal- click on the down arrow to give them a different project role than their contract role.

7. Finding the Right Resources

If you are using are adding real resources to your project as above, be mindful of any pink lines over their assignments- this denotes a conflict with another assignment for a different project. Click on their name to view their schedule and make adjustments.

If you are using placeholders- you have 2 options:

Option 1: Requesting a Resource

If requests are filled by a resource manager or business lead, you can use the new beta feature "Resource Request" to make a request.

  1. Click on Edit Details and ensure the required skills, tags or custom fields are completed to ensure the request will be met with the most qualified person. If you haven't done this when adding a placeholder- click on Edit Details and add them on the pop-up.

2. If you want to request someone specifically and need to check their schedule, click on "Find Person" and then use the filter to see their schedule and check their availability.

3. When you are ready to make a request, click on "Request Beta>Request Resource" and add any additional notes. You can also propose a hire if you do not see any one available.

(Resource managers can see all requests in the People Planner by checking for "Resourcing Requests> Request Raised")

A small yellow icon will appear. If the request is filled, the correct person will be added to your project. If it is in hire or there are notes, you can hover over the icon to see the notes or alternately the icon may be changed if a hire is now in progress.

Option 2: Find a Person & Transferring work over

If you source your own projects, you can still use placeholders to assist with capacity planning and quickly identifying demand you do not have supply for.

Follow the same steps as above when adding a placeholder - click on edit details and then on Find Person.

  1. Click on Find Person. The split screen will appear with options that align wiht the parameters you indicated. Hover over the "Transfer" button to preview what will happen:

2. For more options or to narrow your search, "x" some filters or add more. When you find the right resource, click on transfer to add the person to your project.

Pro tip: You can assign them different project roles here as well by click on the down arrow next to role.

What out for the exclamation marks! This denotes a conflict, either with time off or contracted hours- and not all hours will be transferred over.

Read more about Projects - including all the above here.

8. Managing your Project

Project Dashboard

View project statistics and KPIs by clicking on the name of the project.

On this dashboard, you can alternate views based on hours or days and costs vs revenue.

Use the menu on top to navigate through different sections including Insights, Timesheets, Variance , Phases Reporting, and Details (which includes Custom fields).

To edit your budget, click on the "Budget" button on top.

Pro Tip: If you are making changes to your start date, end date or budget and want to track baseline- consider using either Milestones or notes to track changes. The Project Log will give you a 30 day audit of what happened in your project, but it does not track baseline changes.

Making Changes

As your project progresses, you can make changes that will be tracked in the project "History".

Rescheduling & Duplicating

When on the project dashboard, click on the 3 dots to Reschedule the project. If you wish to try different scenarios, click on Duplicate to get an exact copy of your project. You can then denote them both as tentative to try different scenarios.

Export Data

Data can be exported using the the same menu and selecting "Export Data". You'll be able to choose between actuals or scheduled (Assignments) and you can opt to group by raw, day, week or month. Please note that exports including notes.

Archive, Templates and Delete

We recommend that once a project is complete, you archive it to remove it from the planner but keep the financials. There is currently no limits on how many projects you can archive.

To access archives- click on Manage>Projects and then choose "Archived". Project can be quickly unarchived if this was done in error.

Only admins can delete projects.

Pro-tip: If the project is now indefinitely paused, consider rescheduling it in the past and archiving it. This will allow you to unarchive and move it to the correct start date if it goes forward. You can also consider saving as a template.

Other Changes

To add a pause to a project, you can either "Select All to the Right" and then drag the assignments forward or "Enable Multi Select" and select assignments by on multipl rows to drag forward.

To add more effort or duration to an assignment, click on it and edit those fields:

Please note that dragging an assignment forward will increase the duration and the effort simultaneously. If you only want to increase the duration and not the total effort, extend the assignment and then click on it to reduce the overall effort to the original amount. This will diminish the "daily" or "weekly" effort in the first box "effort" to account for this change.

💡 Reporting

What you will need to report on will be specific to you organization.

Here are some useful shortcuts to help find the information you need:

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