Welcome to the second in a three-part article & webinar series exploring the use cases for Microsoft Project for the Web. The previous article focused on the use of Microsoft Project Plan 1, whereas in this article I’ll highlight examples of how you can extend the basic functionality through the use of Microsoft Power Apps.

So rather than focusing on Accidental Project Managers, the focus within this article is on the ‘power’ users, such as those working in PMO’s that need to collect more information around projects and perhaps enforce governance frameworks to support the defined project/programme lifecycles and more!

Microsoft Project for The Web

As mentioned within the previous article, the latest version – Microsoft Project for the Web – is entirely browser-based with a super slick user interface that most people would be able to use without any formal training. It is after all geared towards the Accidental Project Manager when used in the basic ‘Project Plan 1’ guise.

However, Project for The Web has been designed by Microsoft to be customised and extended, and this is made possible by the fact that it is built on the Common Data Service (CDS) platform where the data is stored within a set of entities. Project for The Web comes with its own entities which can be extended, and you can also add your own entities using the Power Platform, and PowerApps and Microsoft Power Automate.

Extend Microsoft Project for The Web

I’m going to provide some examples of the types of entities you can build using Power Apps, however, note that in order to access Project for The Web data using PowerApps connectors or to build/run PowerApps that access Project for the web data you will need the following:

  • Project Plan 3 (formerly Project Online Professional) OR
  • Project Plan 5 (formerly Project Online Premium) subscription.
  • You also need to be a licensed user of PowerApps with a subscription that gives you rights to build the PowerApps you need.
  • You also need to be a licensed user of Microsoft Power Automate with a subscription that gives you rights to build the Flows you need. If required.

Once you have a Project, Power Apps entity available – users will be able to access Project for The Web either via the default web URL https://project.microsoft.com or through Power Apps as pictured below:

Model-driven app is Wellingtone PWA.

In the example above, the ‘model-driven’ app is called ‘Wellingtone PWA’. Once in the app, we see a list of the projects within the portfolio – the view itself being highly configurable.

Navigate into the highlighted project in Microsoft PWA

From here, we’ll navigate into the highlighted project; where you see all of the artefacts linked to it. As highlighted within this example, we have the ability to attach relevant meta-data against the project which helps to keep things structured and enables grouping and filtering when reporting or creating views. Aside from this we can also capture financial metrics and associate a governance framework for project managers and other users to follow:

Project for the Web Project Lifecycle in PWA
Project Lifecycle in Project for the Web

The project plan / schedule from Project for The Web itself is also visible, through the ‘Tasks’ link with the model-driven app acting as a wrapper around it:

Tasks in Project for the Web PWA

Through Power Apps, you can also access RAID logs:

RAID Logs in Power Apps - PWA

Microsoft Project for The Web for Power Users

As you can see, Project for The Web in conjunction with Microsoft Power Apps delivers a compelling and flexible Project & Portfolio Management solution. It can cater for teams looking for something simple to move away from Excel and Planner, as well as for teams that need a robust and scalable solution to cover the enterprise.

Next Steps

If you want to discuss how we can help you to work smarter then contact us.

Watch the companion webinar

Microsoft Project Plan 1 (Project for the Web) is great by itself, however, it can be extended using Microsoft Power Apps to deliver a feature-rich end-to-end Project & Portfolio Management solution to cater for both accidental project managers and power users such as PMOs! Watch a live demonstration of Project for The Web alongside a model-driven app created within Power Apps that offers governance workflows, RAID logs and more!

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Monthly Newsletter

By: Baz Khinda

Baz Khinda
Commercial Director, BA, MBS, MCTS, CertBusM, PRINCE2, Microsoft P-SSP (Partner Solution Sales professional)

Published: 29 July 2020

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