You can use this business process to plan and structure a project. Using project management methods gives you a better overview of the activities to be carried out and the effect they have on the schedule. Moreover, project planning helps you to estimate the amount of work required to carry out the project.
· You have defined project templates.
· A project can either be initiated by the project lead alone or it can be initiated as the result of a number of predefined business processes that come together to form a project. Possible business processes that trigger a project are:
¡ Opportunity (SAP CRM) (see Opportunity Management)
¡ Concept (SAP xPD) (see Idea and Concept Management)
¡ Project proposal (SAP xRPM) (see Resource and Portfolio Management)
1. Create project (cProject Suite)
As a rule, a number of project types exist in an enterprise and a number of different project templates are assigned to these. Project templates are used to introduce and establish standards for projects throughout the enterprise. They may already contain project roles with their qualifications profiles. Project templates speed up project planning for the project lead.
When you create a project, you normally choose a project type and a project template. However, you can also create a project without a project template.
2. Define or adapt project structure (cProject Suite)
You structure the project as a hierarchy using the following project elements:
¡ Project definition
¡ Checklist items
Phases are typically arranged in a sequence. They contain tasks that are to be completed in this phase. To give the project a better structure, you can divide the tasks into subtasks. Cross-phase tasks can also be created directly below the project definition.
You enter persons responsible for the project elements. If persons were stored for the assigned project role, you can select the person or persons responsible from the list of these persons. You then assign authorizations to these persons or change their authorizations.
Finally, you schedule the work required for each task.
3. Set up project schedule (cProject Suite)
You enter dates for each project element in the project structure:
¡ As a rule, a phase must be completed before the next one can begin. However, you can release tasks in the subsequent phase before the official approval if you do it manually. The duration of each phase defines the start of the phase that follows it, following on from the project start date.
¡ Each of the tasks below the phases has a certain duration and is linked to other tasks by relationships. The linked tasks can also be in other phases.
Relationships affect the dates calculated for each task.
¡ Scheduling can take place top-down or bottom-up: Therefore, each date acts as a limit for the project elements below it. There are different types of limits.
You can also schedule the dates in a GANTT chart.
4. Assign documents (optional) (cProject Suite and SAP ERP)
You can assign documents or document templates of any kind to the individual project elements. In the planning phase, you specify, for example, which documents have to be created in the project, or you use documents to make requirements for carrying out individual tasks.
5. Assign checklists (cProject Suite)
You assign one or more checklists to each phase. Checklists describe the goals that are to be achieved in a phase. You also have the option of setting the Relevant to Approval indicator for a checklist item, if the item has to be finished in order for the phase to be approved.
You can map cross-phase items or problems by creating checklists directly below the project definition.
You assign persons responsible to each checklist and checklist item and specify authorizations.
6. Export project (optional) (cProject Suite and Microsoft Project)
During project planning, it may be necessary to export the project. Possible reasons for this are:
¡ You want to send the project to an external partner who does not have access to cProjects.
¡ You want to be able to process the project when traveling, without a connection to the company network.
You can generate a neutral XML format from the project or export the project to Microsoft Project. You can then import the project later on and reconcile it with the project in the system.
7. Structure project in subprojects (optional) (cProject Suite)
You can plan larger tasks in a separate subproject. To do this, you link a task to a separate project, for which another employee is subproject lead.
The projects are coordinated by means of their dates only, which are dependent on each other. If a date is brought forward or postponed, an automatic notification is initiated.
8. Link business objects to project (optional) (cProject Suite, SAP ERP, and SAP CRM)
When you plan a project, you can create links to existing business objects in other systems, for example, to a network or a sales order in mySAP ERP or to an opportunity in SAP CRM. These links provide all project participants with a simple means of accessing information in other systems or displaying data directly in cProjects.
9. Create initial project version (optional) (cProject Suite)
Once you have completed the planning, you create a snapshot to document the original planning status.
Once you have carried out this process, you have a project structure with dates, planned work, and persons responsible. You can staff the project with suitable employees from your enterprise in the Resource and Time Management with cProjects process. Furthermore, you can plan costs in the Project Accounting with cProjects process, to assess the economic and financial consequences of the project.