When Project Server is installed, there is only one resource stored within the database: the administrator.
The goal associated with importing resources is to quickly and easily have the enterprise resource pool populated with resources from existing schedules that have the appropriate codes (for example, skill codes) assigned to them. Here are some approaches that can be taken to accomplish this:
Cut and paste resources from individual project plans into the checked-out enterprise resource pool, and edit each resource's enterprise codes manually. If you want to import many enterprise resources, this approach might be impractical .
Use the Import Resources Wizard to edit the required enterprise resource codes manually as part of the import process. This is similar to the first option, in which you need to edit each resource's enterprise codes manually, except that in this case you edit them in the Import Resources Wizard instead of in the enterprise resource pool. If you want to import many enterprise resources, this approach might be impractical, too.
The Import Resources Wizard cannot complete until all required enterprise resource codes for all resources being imported are resolved.
Define all required enterprise resource outline codes and their values before you use the Import Resources Wizard. This is the best way to import large groups of resources because you are able to automate the resources and their required enterprise resource outline codes by using the Import Resources Wizard.
Before loading resources into the enterprise resource pool, you should consider the following (or you'll find yourself updating the Enterprise Global template and resource pool multiple times):
What naming conventions has your organization adopted for the different resource types (for example, people might be last name, first name ; material resource names might always start with the letters mat; external vendor names might always start with the letters xvend)? This is important because project managers must be able to find, identify, and select resources from the enterprise resource pool quickly and easily.
What are the enterprise resource outline codes, and how are they associated with enterprise resources? For example, how many skill codes are there and how many are required? Or, what does the Resource Breakdown Structure (RBS) look like, and at what level are enterprise resources to be assigned to the RBS?
How will you define and use generic resources?
Do not underestimate the importance of planning before you import resources into the enterprise resource pool. After you import resources into the enterprise resource pool and assign them to tasks within projects, you cannot easily remove them.
Using the Import Resources Wizard
Although Microsoft Project can import resources from any .MPP file, you might want to create a single Microsoft Project plan that contains all the currently known resources. This project file, which does not need to contain any tasks, can then be imported by using the Import Resources Wizard.
In addition to importing resources, you might want to import each resource's enterprise outline codes. To accomplish this, you define outline codes and custom fields in the .MPP file that contains the resources to be imported, and you map those codes and fields to the enterprise resource codes and fields during the import process.
To use the Import Resources Wizard, follow these steps:
Prepare the input .MPP file with the list of resources that you want to import and their associated information (such as skills, location, cost, and maximum units) mapped to appropriate fields. For example, you might want to use Outline Code 1 in the .MPP file to map to Enterprise Resource Outline Code 1.
Start the Import Resources Wizard by selecting Tools, Enterprise Options, Import Resources to Enterprise.
Open the file containing the resources to be imported by clicking the Open from File button.
Navigate to the .MPP file, ODBC data source (that is, the schedule containing the resources might be stored in an existing Microsoft Project 2000 database), or Microsoft Project server file that you want to import. When you locate the file to import, select it and click Import.
Map local fields to enterprise fields, as desired. As shown in Figure 25.23, the field-mapping screen is divided into two columns . You use the column on the left to specify the outline codes you want to import, and you use the column on the right to specify the enterprise outline codes you want to import to.
Figure 25.23. The Outline Code1 and Outline Code2 fields are mapped from an .MPP file to the Department and Skills Enterprise Resource Outline Code fields, respectively.
Note that any enterprise resource field defined as Required in the Enterprise Global template automatically appears in the Enterprise Resource Field column, marked Required.
You can choose any field (whether it contains appropriate data or not) from the Imported Resource Field pull-down list, and then click Next. Then you can move forward with the wizard and resolve the code mapping later on.
The Map column is automatically checked as each row of fields to map is added. If you decide you don't want to import a set of fields after defining them, you can prevent those specific fields from importing as mapped by removing the check mark from the Map field before continuing with the Import Resources Wizard.
The wizard examines the incoming resource names and outline codes, to determine whether there are duplicates of any errors (such as duplicate resource names or mismatched outline codes), as shown in Figure 25.24.
Figure 25.24. The second paragraph on the screen tells you how many resources are in the schedule being imported and how many are currently ready to be imported.
You can select a resource and click the Resource Information button to display and modify the enterprise data fields associated with the selected resource. Selecting a resource and clicking the Resource Information button displays the same Resource Information screen as in Project Professional, with the exception of the Working Time tab. Fields that are changed here and saved update the enterprise resource pool.
You use the Select/Deselect All button to choose the resources you want to import, or choose them individually by using the X column.
Resolve the errors and click Next to have the defined resources imported. Some errors are easier to resolve than others. For example, for duplicate names, you should leave the box in the X column unchecked. If you get an error such as Invalid Custom Field Value, make sure that the outline codes in the file you are importing from match the enterprise resource outline codes exactly.
After you have completed the resource import, you might want to validate the results by opening the enterprise resource pool and visually inspecting that the new resources and their enterprise outline codes have been added correctly.