So the percentage of what is complete?

I had a recent question concerning an apparent difference between the % complete showing on the Project Center view for a task/project and the % complete showing on My Tasks.  If you have more than one assignment and many tasks it can be difficult to reconcile the task status to the overall project.  But in this case the customer had one task, one assignment so why the difference?  If the project proceeds to plan then there wouldn't be a difference, but if the work performed is different from plan then you can see different values here.  The reason is that the Project Center is showing % Complete - which is based on duration, and My Tasks is showing % Work Complete, which is based on work.

An example will help.  Assume a 10 day task with 8 hours work per day - 80 hours.  If at the end of the first day the resource has completed 8 hours work then both % complete and % work complete are 10% (1 day out of 10 for duration and 8 hours work out of 80 for work).  If however the resource only completes 7.5 hours of work we see a difference.  Project will assume that this is all the work being carried out on day 1 so will need to extend the duration by half an hour (0.0625 days).  So the % complete is now 1 day out of 10.06 days (9.94% - displayed as 10% in Project Center) and the % work complete is 7.5 hours out of 80 hours (9.375% - displayed as 9% in My Tasks).

You can of course always add the % work complete field to a project center view if you want to see this figure.

The other % complete column, Physical % Complete, can be manually entered at the task level and can be used to drive the earned value calculations.  This is used when the other values may not accurately reflect the real progress made in completing the task. 

Technorati Tags: Project Server 2007

Comments (9)

  1. mahirk says:

    hello sir,

    I have a question about using %work complete. I have project managed by using ms project server 2007. All team members of the project have to enter their work as hours in their own timesheet. upto now everything is ok. however, i dont want task % complete change automaticly according hours that team members work. I wanna use physical complete or manual way!

    what should I do for this case? i really need help, Thanks in advance,

    best regards

  2. Hi Mahirk,

    The usual avoiding answer – it depends.  It sounds like Physical % Complete would be the field for you.  You can just make manual entries in this field and it will not get updated by any changes in duration.  This field will then get used for any earned value calculations.  This isn’t top area of expertise and had me reaching for my copy of "Microsoft Office Project for Mere Mortals" by Patti Jansen – thanks to Patti for helping me with this one.

    Best regards,


  3. Armando says:

    Hello Brian,

    I have a question about the My Task View in PWA. Can we change it so that only the work that is incomplete shows. I have a of task and its hard to keep trak as most are completed. this would clean up the view.



  4. Hi Armando,

    Not a great story here.  Show only current tasks is as good as it gets, but it will still show completed current tasks.

    Best regards,


  5. ArmandoP says:

    Hi Brian

    Thanks for your answer, I set the view to Show only current task,but I still have task that are showing up that are more then 30 day after they have been completed. I have check and they are marked as completed in both % completed and % worked. any idea what is wrong?  

    Best regards


  6. Wolfgang says:

    Hi Brian, hi Armando,

    I have the same problem – like checking the ‘Show only current tasks’ does not work at all. After some (like 10) alterations on ‘Show shared view’, ‘show personalized view’, ‘reset page content’ and checking and unchecking ‘Show only current tasks’ it will eventually work. I have SP2 and CU4-2009 installed. Any ideas?

    Kind regards


  7. Hi Armando and Wolfgang.  I’m not sure why you are seeing this.  Have either of you opened a support incident?

    Best regards,


  8. Wolfgang says:

    Hello Brian,

    no support incident yet. I could not reproduce it on my Test System. However, yesterday one of my users had the ‘Timephased View’ unchecked although it is checked in the shared web part. Checking the ‘timephased View’, then entering work hours resulted in the following:

    When I open my tasks in "time-phased view", then enter my hours for today into

    the rows of the according tasks, and then press "Save all",

    1) the column is empty (all my entries of that day lost)

    2) the check box "time-phased view" is unchecked, though the table still is


    3) today’s day is not marked with black vertical lines any more after refresh

    4) though the actually reported hours in the table cells are lost, the task

    title has an orange exclamation mark ("changes not yet submitted")

    I edited the shared view (set items per page to 480 instead of the former 502) which fixed the issue.

    What probably is different on our system it the number of items per page with about 500.

    I also changed some user rights, like revoking the right for ‘Add/Remove Personal Web Parts’ and ‘Update Personal Web Parts’. I also revoked the ‘Manage Lists’ right, but kept the ‘Manage Personal Views’ right.

    May this cause the problems?

    Kind regards


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