How to Create a Project Plan with Bric

Ready…Set…GO!

You can start a new project plan — from your Dashboard or the Projects page. Both can be found in your navigation bar. Next find the button “Plan new Project”, click it, and you are off to the races!

Click to Play Creating a New Project Plan

Describing Your Project Plan in Detail

Next, you will be asked for information about your project. This information helps identify projects on your Timesheet, Dashboard, and Calendar.

Click to Play

You need to name your project and client. To add a new client just start typing, and then click “Add new Client”.

You can also take advantage of Project Type. This allows you to build your project from a template, or analytics from past projects.

Use Project Codes to keep organized. You can manually enter Project Codes, or have Bric create them automatically. If you are an Admin you can control how Project Codes are generated in Setting under Company Settings.

Finally, you can keep your calendar colorful by selecting a color of your choice from the drop down menu. If you don’t select a color, Bric will automatically select a color for you. 

Fiinally, click on the button that says, “Create Project”, and you’ll be taken to a new set of options for setting up your project.

Note: If you need to return to the previous options, click the button on the top right of your new project plan that says, “Edit project details”. Once finished quickly get back by clicking, “Back to Project Plan”. 

Next: Team, Timeline, and Budget.

Project plans are how you will solve your client’s problems. They are more than tasks and deadlines. You have constraints. Success requires you to balance your client’s expectations with your team’s capacity.

Keep in mind — Clients care about budgets until they sign a contract. Then they care about how long the project will take. But when the project is finished all they care about is the final deliverable. Make sure you have enough time and budget to create an outstanding final deliverable.

Bric allows you to optimize your project plan step-by-step — in no particular order. Create your plan how it works best for you. Bric is flexible and will adjust. Here is a step-by-step how-to:

Adding Roles and People.

Click to Play Adding Roles and People to Project Plans

Start by adding roles — click “Add Role”. This allows you to create placeholders for people without having to name names. A placeholder will be automatically created, and you can add as many as you like — click “+ Add Another [Role Name]”.

Next, you are ready to fill-in the placeholders. To assign a person to a Role click “Select a [Role Name]”. Bric will present you with a list of your people sorted by Role with the most relevant at the top. You can select anyone on that list — sometimes people have to play other roles than their primary role. Also, people can serve multiple roles on the same project.

Note: You must assign people and activate the project before Reports, Dashboards, and Timesheets will update.

Adding Weeks and Hours.

Click to Play Adding Weeks and Hours to Project Plans

This is the most important part of planning your team’s time and skills. It is where you determine the time need by certain people in certain roles.

I recommend starting with adding weeks. Weeks make it easy to visualize your project’s timeline. To add weeks click the “+” button. For multiple weeks enter a “#” and press the “+” button. To remove weeks press the “-” button.

Next, add hours. You can add hours by role or by person:

  • By role hours will be distributed to the first person until full, and then move to the next person.
  • By person, you have more control. You can dial in the distribution of hours for each person.

To enter time by role or person, you will need to click  to unlock.

Adding all this detail can be a lot of work. Thankfully, you don’t always have to start with a blank project plan. Learn how to use Project Types; you will save time, and create more accurate project plans.

Billable Rates and Setting a Budget.

As you add roles, people, weeks, and hours Bric will calculate the price you should charge your client. If you enter your Client’s budget, Bric will show how much Budget is left or if you are over budget.

Click to Play Calculating Your Project's Budget

How much you should charge is determined by your billable rate. Bric supports multiple billable rates: a company wide billable rate, rates for roles and people, and finally custom rates by project. More specific billable rates override more general rates:

  • Role billable rates override Company rates.
  • Person billable rates override Role rates
  • A project rates override all previous rates.

It is important to note that nothing is ever lost. You can always choose to use a person rate, role rate, or company rate.

Click to Play Adjusting Billable Rates

In addition If this is a not-billable project, uncheck the Billable checkbox. You can also choose to have this project not impact Capacity Reports — check the box “Does Not Impact Capacity Reports”.

Select a Start Week.

Click to Play Select a Start Week

Finally the most important step — the Start Week. Set the start week by selecting a date from the Start Week box. The start week for a project determines:

  • Who is available to work on the project.
  • How many hours per week they have available
  • The number of weeks until the project is complete.

Projects dynamically adjust to changes. If a client delays, you can quickly notify them how it impacts the project.

3…2…1 Launch! How to Activate Your Project Plan.

Click to Play Change Your Project Plan Stage

Once you are ready — with your signed client agreement — it is time to activate your project. Click on the “Project Stage” drop-down menu and select “Active”. Now your project will show up on Timesheets, the Calendar, and Reports.

Notice a new line, you can now compare your Planned Hours with Actual Hours side-by-side. Actual hours will update as your team completes their timesheets.

Shit happens. Bric provides you with two different plans: your original plan and a current plan. Estimated Hours are your original plan — your baseline. However, if things change you can adjust Planned Hours. This is great for updating your team on how long they should work on a project.

Once Complete Bring It Home.

 

Click to Play Mark Your Project Completed

Once your project is finished mark is Complete by clicking on the Project Stage drop-down menu and select “Completed”. This tells Bric that your project plan is ready to be analyzed. The results will be used to recommend more accurate project plans in the future.

On the Projects page you can see a list of your projects by Stage. This includes your completed projects. Every once in a while, take time to review your past projects.