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I have a bunch of tasks that I want to start as soon as possible, then they all need to wait until after a dependency finishes, then they have another 3 days of effort left.

Any ideas how to plan for this up front? I know how to split tasks, but how do I get the first part to start ASAP (no dependencies) and the second part to start after the dependency finishes and take 3 more days?

One of the reasons I don't want to show it as two separate tasks linked with a dependency is that I want to assign the resource from a pool of 4 developers and I want the program to auto level. Of course the same developer needs to work on both parts of the task.

In order to keep the concepts and the UI clear and (relatively) easy to understand, we decided when designing split tasks that it just made sense if the chunks of a split task could not differ from each other in any aspect apart from the non-contiguous periods of effort they require. As such a split task may have dependencies and prerequisites, but the individual chunks cannot. So there is no way to accomplish what you want with split tasks.

I see the value in what you're doing, and feel that conceptually the second part of these tasks which have prerequisites should be regarded as separate tasks, however there is no way to assign a pool of resources and add some kind of such that constraint that a given set of tasks should be assigned the same resource by the leveling process. For now I think you will have to make specific assignments to a given resource. That will unfortunately requires some manual work to keep the project level. Flipping over to the Resource View and turning on View -> Timeline -> Resource Load can help with that process, but it's far from automating it.

I'm noodling around ideas for adding some attribute to resource group assignments to instruct the app to pick the same resource (if possible) but so far they all feel very clunky.

Thanks for getting back to me on this.

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