While studying for the Microsoft Project 2010, Managing Projects Exam (70-178) I learned a lot about using the software that will help me manage projects more efficiently. One of the features in Microsoft Project that I keyed in on was the Replace Resource feature.When you initially Outline a project in Microsoft Project, it is likely that it is early on in the project and you may not know exactly which resources will be allocated to your project. You should, however, know the type of resources you will need. Project allows you to mark general resources titles like “Project Manager” or “Developer” as generic.

Creating Generic Resources

  1. Navigate to the Resource Sheet via one of the many ways:
    1. Navigate to the Task tab -> View group -> click arrow to select the Resource Sheet view
    1. Navigate to the Resource tab -> View group -> click the arrow to select the Resource Sheet view
    2. Navigate to the View Tab -> Resource Views group -> Click the Resource Sheet button
    3. Click the Resource Sheet button to the left of the zoom slider
  2. Add some generic resources via the Resource Sheet by typing them into the table.Generic Resource Sheet
  3. Next double click one of your resources to access the Resource Information dialog box. Check the generic checkbox to mark your resource as generic.Resource Information
  4. Generic resources are indicated with an icon in the info column.Generic Resource

Project Outline with generic resources assigned

You can outline your project and assigned your generic resources in the default Gantt Chart view via the Entry table. See example below.
Gantt Chart

Further along in your planning phase, you may be given the names of the actual resources that will be assigned to your project. This is where the Replace Resource feature comes in handy.

Replacing Resources

  1. On the Gantt Chart select the fields in which you want to replace the generic resource (you can even select the entire Entry table if you want to replace all of on type of resource), then navigate to the Resources tab -> Assignments Group -> Assign Resources.
  2. In the Assign Resources dialog box, select the Resource name that you want to replace and click the Replace button. I selected Project Manager.Assign Resources
  3. In the Replace Resource dialong box, click the specific name of the resource that you want to replace the generic Project Manger with and click OK.Replace Resource
  4. When you close the Assign Resources dialog box, you will notice that all of the tasks you selected that contained the generic resource name now contain the name you replaced them with in the Resources Name column.Updated Gantt Chart

Once you know who the other resources are you can easily replace them as well.

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