Unlike task type, there is no option to set a contour for the entire project. Every assignment uses the default flat contour until you change it. Project 2000 includes eight predesignated contours:
• Flat (default)-work is distributed evenly.
• Back Loaded-peak activity occurs at the end of the assignment.
• Front Loaded-peak activity occurs at the beginning of the assignment
• Double Peak-work clusters around two periods of peak activity.
• Early Peak-similar to Front Loaded, but with a ramp up to the peak activity.
• Late Peak-similar to Back Loaded, but with a ramp down from peak activity.
• Bell-a single peak in the middle of the assignment.
• Turtle-a bell with ramp up and ramp down.
To change the work contour for an assignment in either Task Usage or Resource Usage view, double-click an assignment to open the Assignment Information dialog box and choose a contour from the or Contour drop- down list:
Contours interact with task and resource settings as you manage and adjust assignments during the life of the project. The contour shape is preserved with the assignment when you move the task or the project schedule changes.
When you contour an assignment, Project applies the contour and recalculates work, duration, or units based on the task type of the assignment’s task.
Before we discuss the effect that task type has on contouring, let’s take a look at each of the eight predefined contours, applied to a forty-hour work assignment to a task created with the default fixed units task type .
The Flat Contour
With the Flat contour, work is distributed evenly across the duration of the assignment, as shown in the split window with the Task Usage view on top and the Resource Graph in the bottom window in 10.14. With flat contouring, 50% of the assignment’s work is completed in the first half of the assignment duration.
The Back Loaded Contour
With a back loaded assignment, the majority of the work is undertaken at the end of nie assignment. Only 25% of the work is completed in the first half of the assignment’s duration. Preparation for an event such as a conference is generally back loaded as work
increases when the event approaches.
For back loaded assignments, the back loading icon is displayed in the Indicators column. The effect of applying the Back Loaded contour is easily seen in
The Double Peak Contour
Apply the Double Peak contour to assignments that feature two major expenditures of effort, with down time in between. Halfway through a double-peak contoured assignment, 50% of the work should have been completed, but the assign is past one of the two hurdles in the assignment. Figure 10.17 shows a forty-hour assignment with double peak contouring .
The Early Peak Contour
The Early Peak contour is similar to the Front Loaded contour, but activity starts more slowly. Seventy percent of the work is completed in the first half of the assignment’s duration
The Late Peak Contour
The Late Peak contour is similar to the Back Loaded contour, but the peak activity is near, not at, the end of the assignment, and is followed by a rapid ramp down. With late peak contouring, only 30% of the work is distributed in the first 50% of the assignment duration. (After the midway point, every day probably seems like Monday.) A
40·hour assignment with Late Peak contouring is
The Bell Contour
Use Bell contouring when the assignment requires a rapid ramp up to a large expenditure of effort in a short burst at the midway point, followed by a rapid ramp down,
The Turtle Contour
Turtle contour is like the Bell contour, but with caramel and peanuts. Just kidding. It’s actually like the Bell contour, but with faster raping and a longer period of high activity, as shown in Figure 10.21. With Turtle contouring, the period of peak activity lasts twice as long as with Bell contouring.
Each predesigned contour adjusts the amount of work that will be done in each time period. The cumulative result will be a change in duration or work, depending on the task type of the task involved in the assignment, Contouring affects assignments and holds units fixed
•he contouring. Consequently, contouring never adjusts units. In
addition, a task’s effort-driven st:tta.j! is not a factor because effort-driven scheduling.
applies when resources are added or removed non an assignment,
On the contrary, contouring adjusts the distribution of activity within the assignment, To see the effect of task type on contouring, we created three tasks, each of which has a five-day duration, and assigned one full-time resource, Worker B (also known as Buzz).
Now, we’ll contour each of the three assignments exactly by selecting all three and applying a Double Peak contour. The three contoured assignments. For the fixed units and fixed-work task types, contouring the assignment resulted in a change in duration. In the fixed-duration task’s assignment, the duration could not be changed, so contouring reduced the hours of work in the assignment.
Contours are applied to assignments, not to tasks or resources. If You’ve several resources assigned to a task, you can apply a different contour for each assignment.
For an Exhibit at Trade Show task, for example, assignments for staff arriving early to set up could be front loaded, while assignments for staff staying after to break down the display could be back loaded.
The Mathematics of Predefined Contours
When you apply any predesignated controller other than the default contour, Project 2000 determines the duration that will be required after contouring, splits the duration into 10 segments, and then multiplies each segment by a percentage to determine the hours
(minutes, days) of work to allocate to the segment Table ·10.1 shows the percentage of ware that will be assigned for each segment of the predesignated contours and the
• average Of the work in each segment For fixed units and fixed-work tasks, before Project applies the percentages in the contour, it has to perform two additional calculations. First, Project divides the total work in the assignment (40 hours) by the average of the segment percentages for the selected contour (in the case of the Turtle contour, 700 k to determine the new duration for the assignment: 40 hours/O.70 = 57 hours, or 7.14 days (see figure
The additional 2 14 days’ duration is the result of assigning less work in the first three and last three segments to contour the task (refer to Table 10.1).Project then divides the duration into ten segments, and allocates the work for each segment based on the
percentage shown in the table above. With fixed-duration tasks. duration can’t change, so applying a contour results in a reduction
To quickly calculate the new duration for fixed unit and fixed-work tasks before applying a contour, divide the current duration by the average in the last column of the table. calculate the new work value for fixed-duration tasks, multiply the current work value
by the percentage.