The Oracle | Primavera Risk (Pertmaster) plan menu has some of the more important functionality for a typical user. The plan information, planning units, user defined fields, resources, calendars, plan options, and ability to organize by activity codes are all located in this section. Many of these items will have detailed training sections in other modules.
This option is one of the more important options for document control and how data will be presented on the risk charts. A detailed module will outline this section due to the high level of importance for scenario modeling. Editing the plan notes, plan title for reports, project data date, and the project start date can all be done in this section. An overview of the project statistics such as actual cost, remaining cost, number of milestones, and count of each activity type can be found under a tab in this section as well.
The planning unit in Primavera Risk can be set to 15 minute, 1 hour, and 1 day intervals. When importing a file from Primavera P6 or Microsoft Project, users will choose the planning unit at that time. This option allows the flexibility for users to plan in whole days for common schedules. They are also able to use a smaller planning unit for schedules such as outage and turnaround plans.
The Task User Fields… option will have a detailed training module, however this is the screen that users will access to setup user-defined field or activity codes in Primavera Risk. If users have setup user-defined fields, or UDFs, in Priamavera P3, Primavera P6, or Microsoft Project, the they will be able to see and edit the user-defined fields or code values in this pop-up.
The Organize… menu item is very popular for Primavera P3 and Primavera P6 users. The risk analyst or project planner can create their hierarchy or breakdown structure for the project plan based on activity codes and user-defined fields. The Pertmaster user can switch back to the work breakdown structure sort at any point, however it is common to create a breakdown view based on codes such as area, discipline, project phase, etc.
Primavera Risk does allow for resource leveling like most planning and scheduling tools on the market. This option allows users to toggle on and off resource leveling, set resource leveling priorities, and determine which resources are being leveled. Pertmaster also has options to turn resource leveling on during simulations in the risk analysis options. This is a very time intensive mode of analysis, however it will work as expected and do a full resource level for every risk simulation.
For resource leveling, software algorithms choose how the activities will be leveled, therefore many users do not use this option on a detailed plan as it separates the human element from planning, overallocation, and sequencing. On some plans the resource leveling capabilities may make sense. This relates more to planning and scheduling, however it is important since a Monte Carlo analysis can be considered proactive scheduling when the concepts are applied to a schedule.
Users can “nudge” activities in the Primavera Risk Gantt chart view by dragging them to their new desired start date or setting a nudge date in the column view. Users can save a scenario based on the nudge dates or clear all of the nudge dates from the scenario using the Reset… option. This allows users to see what making a change to the project plan will do without actually making the change to the live dates.
The set data date option is similar to the status date option in Microsoft Project or the data date option in Primavera P6. The users are able to set the “time now” date or status date of the project plan. This option can also be accessed under the Plan Information… option detailed above. The data date from an imported Microsoft Project, Primavera P3, or Primavera P6 plan will be imported automatically. When importing a Primavera P6 file with sub-projects, it is important that all project plans have the same data date.
The Baseline… option allows users to set a baseline start and finish date for each activity as they are currently planned in the live schedule. Primavera Risk will allow analysts to overlay the baseline bars for comparison as the project is progressed and updated. Pertmaster only allows for one project baseline. Setting a second baseline will launch a warning that the original baseline will be overwritten. Baseline dates setup in other scheduling tools such as Microsoft Project and Primavera P6 will be imported automatically. The risk reports will allow users to report to a deterministic date based on Pertmaster’s CPM calculation or a baseline date that may be set due to contractual requirements, etc.
Project calendars can be setup directly in Primavera Risk. Most users will not need this functionality as all calendars from the Primavera P3, Primavera P6, and Microsoft Project schedule will be imported into the risk tool. A risk analyst can edit the calendars if desired.
Primavera Risk also incorporates the concept of a probabilistic calendar. In any scheduling tool, users can set non-working periods. A probabilistic calendar allows users to introduce uncertainty on the non-working period based on conditions such as weather, work stoppages, etc.
Resources names, units, and rates will import directly from the original scheduling tool. Resources and sub-resources can also be setup in Primavera Risk. The resource tree allows users to see a hierarchical view of the resources in the project. Most analysts will not have to create their resources in Pertmaster as they will import from another tool. If the imported resources do not exist or need to edited, then they can be edited via these options.
The Plan Options… menu item is very important. It has options such as editing the date, duration, and currency formats. Most importantly, a tab for the scheduling options is located in this sections. The scheduling options control critical items such as retained logic or progress override. Lag calendars and float calculations are also set in this section. The scheduling options will import from the original scheduling tool, however it is a best practice to make certain that the options were imported correctly. Items such as float calculations will impact risks charts such as criticality tornadoes.
Pertmaster has some macros and spreadsheets that have been added to help users to do some complex functions quickly and easily. Items such as loading the costs from excel will have their own training module to fully detail the process.
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