What's new in Project Web App (Project Server 2010)
Published: January 27, 2011
The version of Microsoft Project Web App that ships with Microsoft Project Server 2010 includes an improved user interface and several robust new features. Together, these updates provide an intelligent business application that supports integrated project and portfolio management capabilities, scalable collaboration for both small teams and enterprises, and an extended platform that integrates with related Microsoft technologies.
In this article:
Improved user interface
Project Web App offers a significantly updated user interface, including the Ribbon and a streamlined project editing grid.
Introducing the Ribbon
Project Web App now uses the Ribbon, which helps you to quickly find the commands that you need to complete a task. Commands are organized in logical groups that are collected together under tabs. The new versions of Microsoft SharePoint Server 2010, Microsoft SharePoint Foundation 2010, and the Microsoft Project 2010 client program are also using the Ribbon, providing a seamless interface across all programs.
Enhanced project editing interface
With a new grid-based project editing interface, you can now update project data in the same grid and Gantt Chart view that you use to review your project data. Data entered into the grid is validated upon entry, and the overall experience is much more streamlined. This updated grid is used throughout Project Web App, including the Project Center, task updates, preview pages, the Resource Center, and resource assignment views.
Integrated project and portfolio management
Changes in integrated project and portfolio management include end-to-end demand management and portfolio analysis solutions, and the ability to manually schedule tasks and effectively schedule using a top-down approach.
Manage project proposals
The new demand management functionality in Project Web App enables you to implement an end-to-end proposal submission and approval process that uses templates, a Web-based proposal submission form, project lifecycles, and business strategies. Once a proposal is approved, you can easily create a project schedule based on the proposal and assign resources.
Analyze proposals for your project portfolio
Project Web App offers new portfolio analysis features. You can now analyze project proposals using business drivers, high-level cost constraints, and high-level resource constraints before you make approval decisions.
In Project Web App, project managers can maintain control over their project plans and minimize unexpected changes using manually scheduled tasks. Factors such as task dependencies and calendar changes will no longer automatically adjust task dates when user-controlled scheduling is enabled.
Top-down summary tasks
At the beginning of the planning phase, project managers may only have some high-level information on key deliverables and major milestones of their projects. Using Project Web App, projects can be divided into high-level phases based on the overall timeline and budget. This means that dates for individual work items do not necessarily need to line up exactly with dates for the high-level phases.
A major goal in developing this version of Project Web App was to provide teams with tools customized for their size and maturity. To achieve this goal, improvements were made to help simplify submitting and approving timesheets and task status. In addition, user delegation was added to support an uninterrupted collaborative experience.
Single entry mode for timesheets and task status
Project Web App offers a new unified mode for entering time and task progress. If your organization chooses to use this single entry mode, you can complete your timesheet and inform your manager of your task status with a single view.
Approval Center for timesheets and task status
In addition to being able to enter time and task progress in a single location, those with the appropriate permissions can now approve timesheets and task updates in a single view.
The new user delegation feature in Project Web App enables one user to act as another user, regardless of permission-level differences. For example, if an administrator has a planned vacation and needs someone to fill in for her while she's away, she can identify a team member as her delegate, and that team member will have all of the administrator’s privileges.
Project Web App offers an extended platform, including departmental custom fields, the ability to create multiple OLAP cubes that have department support, and end-user reporting that uses Excel Services.
Departmental custom fields
Departmental custom fields, or departments, enable you to define, at a resource, task, or project level, which fields are required or not required. This helps to filter information displayed throughout Project Web App, so that information is focused on what is applicable to each department. While this is not a security feature, it can help to simplify the interface for Project Web App users.
Multiple OLAP cubes with department support
Project Web App enables you to build more than one OLAP cube. In addition, you can now filter cube data by department.
Business intelligence with Excel Services
In this release, Excel Services in Microsoft SharePoint Server 2010 is integrated with Project Web App to make it easier to create business intelligence views. As part of this integration, blank data-connected spreadsheets and predefined views are provided. The data available for reporting has also been expanded to include timesheet custom fields, project properties, and portfolio planner and optimizer data.