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How to Assign Resources "up to" X %?? Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
Example: Four concurrent tasks, one resource

Task 1: 10 hours (effort)
Task 2: 10 hours
Task 3: 10 hours
Task 4: 50 hours

25% of 100% of the resource assigned to each task

Good thing: When leveling resources, OmniPlan (correctly) has the resource start all four tasks immediately.

Good thing: Tasks 1, 2, and 3 finish up in one week (25% of my 40 hour employee to each task).

Bad thing: Task 4 continues to receive only 25% of the resource's time, even AFTER the other tasks are complete (he's underutilized). As a result, it says the task will take 5 weeks (25% = 10 hrs x 5 weeks). In "the real world", he'd spend the entire second week (40 hours) on the last task, and get it done in a week.

Bad thing: If I change the allocation for task 4 to "100% of 100%", it doesn't even let my resource start until he has 100% availability (even though he could, "in the real world", use 25% of his time on it in week one.

Bad thing: I can't micromanage this - with changing dates and priorities, I don't know "which date" to bump my resource's allocation on - I'd (preferably) want Omni focus to do it for me.

So how do I tell Omnifocus "This task requires a minimum of 25% of this guy's time - don't schedule this task until he has that availability. BUT, if he has MORE than 25% availability, use it all, up to 100%"?

What am I doing wrong? Can this be done?

(new to the forum - thank you for the help - would appreciate any helpful links/resources on the subject - apologies if a repeat question - and sorry for the rambling!) ;)
zbacon, I don't think you rambled. And anyways, it's easier to skim over a few extra words if necessary than guess at important details someone left out. Speaking of guessing, I'm assuming you mean OmniPlan not OmniFocus, since this is an OmniPlan thread, and you're assigning resources.

In short, no, there isn't a way to do that.

Has anybody come up with any clever workarounds?

(And by the way, you're also welcome to email if you ever need a direct line to the Omni Support Ninjas)
Yes! I did mean OmniPlan. (I'm an iPad junkie, so I have Omnifocus for iPad on the brain with the imminent release!) ;)

That's too bad about the resource assignment - I can't imagine it's an uncommon issue - but I guess I'll call it a feature request and leave it at that, unless anyone else has workarounds. Thanks!
I'll file a request for this. Thanks!
Ok, I keep running into this, so I need some advice - I've confirmed I can't do it the way I'd like (up to X% of this resource), but how do you other OmniPlan users handle the following situation?

I have to dig two holes, and have two people to dig them.

One needs to be a small hole, one needs to be a big hole.

I have Person A start digging the small hole, and person B start digging the big hole.

Person A finishes first, at which point I want him to join person B so the big hole is complete faster, and I don't have underutilized resources.

It's that last part that's giving me fits. Do I need to divide the "dig big hole" into two tasks? (One with one resource, the second with two?). Do I need to wait until Person A is free, THEN add him to the big hole task (not sure if that works).

I guess I'm trying to show in OmniPlan how long it will take these two people to dig these holes, in this order, with no underutilization - how would you structure/assign on these tasks (no matter how manual) to have an accurate representation of this at the START of the project - and how do you updated it (even if manually) throughout the project?

MUCH appreciated!
The only way I can think to do it at the moment would be rather manual.
Create 3 tasks:
'Dig small hole' -- assigned to person A
'Dig big hole - phase 1' -- assigned to person B (should have approximately the same end date as 'Dig small hole')
'Dig big hole - phase 2' -- assigned to person A & B
Make sure there's a dependency from each of the first two tasks to the third one.

Now for the fussy part:
When 'Dig small hole' is done, edit the end date of 'phase 1' to that same date and set its completion to 100%. ['phase 2' should slide over to start immediately]
Update 'phase 2' so that its effort reflects the remaining amount of work for digging the big hole.
From here, you can treat this as a normal task.
I was afraid of that - thanks for the confirmation, at least! Wanted to make sure I wasn't missing an easier way...
I have a related question. Say I want 4 people to review a document sometime in the next week (5 days), and each of them will need to spend about 2 hours reviewing it. I fix both the effort (8 hours) and duration (1 week), and OP figures out that each person is using 2/40 = 5% of their time to do so.

However, when I level the project, these people all become underutilized for the week, fixed at 5%. I'd like their other tasks to fill in some of that week as well. Currently, this only happens if I manually enter in values of effort of 95% or less for all of their other tasks which might conflict during that week. What would be better is if other tasks (based on priority and position) would automatically lower their effort percentage accordingly (and naturally take a bit longer) so that people could work on more than one task at a time.

Is there something I'm missing (e.g., in how tasks are split, or again an "up to X%" universal setting)?

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