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Setting Up Resources in Microsoft Project 2010

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Microsoft Project 2010 supports three types of resources. These are work resources, as well as two special-purpose resources: cost and material. In this chapter from Microsoft Project 2010 Step by Step, you will set up work and cost resources.

Chapter at a Glance


Microsoft Project 2010 supports three types of resources. These are work resources, as well as two special-purpose resources: cost and material. Briefly, here is how to think about the three resource types:

  • Work resources include the people and equipment needed to complete the tasks in a project.

  • Cost resources represent a financial cost associated with a task that you need to account for. Examples include categories of expenses like travel, entertainment, and so on.

  • Material resources are consumables that you use up as the project proceeds. For example, a construction project might need to track steel or concrete as it is used throughout the project.

In this chapter you will set up work and cost resources. Material resources are described in Chapter 8, “Fine-Tuning Resource Details.”

In this chapter, you will set up the work and cost resources that you need to complete the new book launch at Lucerne Publishing. Effective resource management is one of the most powerful advantages of using Project instead of task-focused planning tools, such as paper-based organizers. You do not need to set up resources and assign them to tasks in Project; however, without this information, you might be less effective in managing your schedule. Setting up resource information in Project takes a little effort, but the time is well spent if your project is primarily driven by time or cost constraints (and nearly all projects are driven by one, if not both, of these factors).

Setting Up Work Resources

Work resources are the people and equipment that do the work of the project. Project focuses on two aspects of work resources: their availability and their costs. Availability determines when specific resources can work on tasks and how much work they can perform, and costs refer to how much money will be required to pay for those resources.

Some examples of work resources are listed in this table.

Work Resource


Individual people identified by name.

Jun Cao; Zac Woodall

Individual people identified by job title or function.

Publisher; Contract specialist

Groups of people who have common skills. (When assigning such interchangeable resources to a task, you might not be concerned about who the individual resource is so long as they have the right skills.)

Copyeditors; Typesetters


Offset lithography press

Project can help you make smarter decisions about managing work resources and monitoring financial costs.

In this exercise, you enter the names of several people resources.

  1. On the File tab, click Save As.

    Project displays the Save As dialog box.

  2. In the File name box, type Simple Resources, and then click Save.

  3. On the View tab, in the Resource Views group, click Resource Sheet.


    You will use the Resource Sheet view to enter the initial list of resources for the new book launch project.

  4. Click the cell directly below the Resource Name column heading.

  5. Type Jun Cao, and press the Enter key.

    Project creates a new resource.

  6. On the next empty rows in the Resource Name column, enter the following names:

    Sharon Salavaria

    Toby Nixon

    Toni Poe

    Zac Woodall


    These are all individual people. You can also have a resource that represents multiple people. You’ll enter such a resource next.

  7. In the Resource Name field, below the last resource, type Copyeditors, and then press Enter.