Wait time tasks that are counted in calendar days


#1

I have a project where there are several steps where we must wait X calendar days. My approach to this has been to create a staff resource named “Wait” which works 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, and I’ve assigned these tasks to it with durations of X days.

Because the resource works 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, and is assigned 100% to the project, I expect the “effort” and “duration” for these tasks to be identical. However, if I give the task a duration of 2 days, I end up with an effort of over a week … and the task will still show up as 4 days on the calendar if it spans a weekend.

Is there some better, more reliable way of handling this?

Thanks!


#2

Short answer: try giving the task an effort of “48h”. Is that what you were looking to accomplish?

Longer explanation:

Your “wait” resource is able to work 24 hours a day. In the Project inspector, under Effort Unit Conversion, you can see that (by default) 1 work day is defined to be 8 hours and 1 work week is defined to be 40 hours. This means means that “48 hours” of effort will be displayed by OmniPlan as 1 week (40 hours) + 1 day (8 hours) of effort.

You can make this a little less confusing by always displaying effort in hours, rather than using weeks or days: in the Project inspector, the Formats section has checkboxes for which units it should use when displaying Duration and Effort.

Why did entering “2d” for duration turn into 4 days of calendar delay when scheduled over a weekend? Well, duration always calculates the interval according to the project schedule: when you enter 2d, it’s going to advance the project schedule 2 days from the start date: so if the task is dependent on a task that finishes at the end of the work day on Thursday, 2 days later on the work calendar will be the end of the day on the following Monday, which is of course 4 calendar days later. It then calculated the amount of effort your “Wait” resource would need to put in to make that delay happen, and came up with 96 hours, which it displays as 2 weeks (80 hours) plus 2 days (16 hours). (Unless you adjust its settings somewhere.)

The ideal solution to your scenario would be if OmniPlan supported entering a task’s lead time using elapsed days (e.g. “+2ed” rather than project calendar days “+2d”). That definitely seems like a feature worth adding in a future OmniPlan update!


#3

The 24x7 part is actually not as important. That was just one of the ways I was trying to deal with the main issue… which is:
Even though most of the project is a Mon-Fri thing, I need some tasks to count time on the weekends as well.

Say I have Task A, and Task B. Task B is “wait 2 days”. There’s a F->S dependency on A->B. If Task A finishes on Friday afternoon, Task B should finish on Sunday afternoon, not Tuesday.

However, I don’t want any other tasks to mark time on the weekend. If Task A itself takes 3 days and starts on Friday, I don’t want it to finish until Wednesday.