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# WHAT IS THE ADDIN AND WHAT IS IT FOR?

Watch the following video

## TECHNICALLY

The AddIn is a small, but very sophisticated, complementary piece of software that is installed on the same computer on which Project Professional (host), the base software, is run. The AddIn uses an interoperability architecture of the base software and extends its functionalities. Commonly this type of software receives denominations of the type "Complement" or "Personalization".

Not all the functionalities that are exposed to the user reside within the AddIn. The AddIn serves as a bridge (interface) with a service provided from the domain valorganado.com. The behavior of the software, the way in which the graphics are displayed and the rules used in the verification, are continuously improved. Thus, the software used today is not necessarily the same that will be used tomorrow. It is for this reason that The AddIn should be understood as a small part of what is most appropriately described as a service.

## FUNCTIONALLY

The AddIn is intended to expand, deepen and improve the native performance of the base software (Project Professional) in application of the Earned Value Management method. It will help you to apply the method successfully.

The base software allows a wide variety of methods to be used, including Earned Value Management. The AddIn focuses on this method and can be used in a wide variety of approaches or orientations. This is how, for example, the AddIn is extremely useful both in the application of Earned Value with an Agile approach and in the application of Earned Value with a Predictive approach.

### Progress as Physical PercentageComplete

When the AddIn is active, it takes control of the relationship between two project fields: Percentage Complete and Physical Percentage Complete. The AddIn automatically fill one of them with the value it should have. That is, it deduces one of them based on the other.

How is it done?

Suppose that, in the following illustration, the planned cost of a task is not evenly distributed over the task (it is not linear). That is, your cost baseline is a curve (in black). 50% of Percentage Complete corresponds to time (in red). 50% of Physical Percentage Complete corresponds to cost (in green). They are not the same.

Imagine for a moment, as an example, that you ask a worker to install 100 m2 of carpet. You tell the worker that you will be paid 50% of the money when he has completed 50% of the work. A few days after the worker comes to collect. You try to validate the delivery, but discover that the worker has not installed anything. When you talk to the worker, he argues: "What happens is that, according to the plan, the initial 50% of the time was destined to get inspiration and I already got it." Consequently, the worker argues that 50% of the work defined in the plan has been completed. If the worker is reporting progress with the Percentage field completed, he says the right thing, he has already completed 50% and you must pay him. If the worker is reporting progress with the Completed Physical Percentage, he is in error, because 50 mt2 of carpet has not been completed.

In the community of Project Managers, there is a greater consensus that, when talking about progress, It means “Progress for the client” or “Physical Progress”, which translates, in the usual commercial practices, in the cost (Physical Percentage Complete) In the example, the Percentage Complete (red) is a perspective more associated with the invested effort and less with the obtained result. It is equivalent to declaring that the amount of progress that should be made in 50% of total time, has been made. The latter is not 50% progress in scope, it is the progress c that, according to the plan, had to be completed within 50% of the time.

This issue is of great importance for Project Managers since, for design reasons, the base software (Project Professional) facilitates the registration of Percentage Complete (does not match best practices) with buttons (task ribbon) and makes it difficult to Registrate the Physical Percentage Complete, which is the one that coincides with the best practices.

The AddIn not only adds buttons to the ribbon to record the Physical Percentage Complete (best practices), that is relatively easy. In addition, if you decide to report the progress of a task with the Percentage Complete, the AddIn will calculate and record (additionally) the Physical Percentage Complete as:

"Physical Percentage Complete"={"c"/"Baseline Cost"}*100

If instead, you decide to report the progress of a task with the Physical Percentage Complete, the AddIn will calculate the Percentage Complete as:

"Percentage Complete"={"t"/"Baseline Time"}*100

Once the task calculation is done, the AddIn will continue upstream (roollup) with the summary tasks, until the project summary task is reached, that is, the overall project summary, correcting the progress, task by task, so that The whole project is consistent. In this way, you can choose the method you prefer for each task or the one that best suits the nature of the job. The AddIn will do the rest, isn't it great?

### The Earned Value Management Chart

The base software (Project Professional) has reports incorporated natively. In general terms, they fulfill an important function and, at first glance, they seem to be correct. Are they really?

After displaying the data table, setting a suitable time scale and removing some static text panels to have a cleaner appearance, something can be obtained as shown in the following illustration. Is it correct? Not completely…

Not all Project Management professionals easily accept this way of displaying information and, having no better alternatives, some decide to export the information outside the tool and visualize the graphics in another tool, whose flexibility allows them to represent the state in a better way. The problem is pointed out more clearly in the following illustration.

It is not correct that the Planned Value always falls to zero after the status date. It is also not true that the Earned Value and the Actual Cost fall to zero after the status date. Even if the project does not know its future progress, the Planned Value grows and the Earned Value remains (at least) constant. Project Management professionals understand that it is a limitation of the reporting component. However, it is not the most complicated issue.

The most complicated issue is shown in the following illustration. This image was taken from Project Professional in 2019 and shows EV (CPTR) of 1040 (top right) and EV of 840 on the status date (bottom in October) why? It is an inconsistency, not easy to reproduce, associated with the way in which the time series of the Earned Value is obtained and the measurement method (Percentage Complete vs. Physical Percentage Complete).

It can be said that, with sufficient knowledge and, with some degree of tolerance to certain limitations, the Earned Value Management method can be successfully applied from the tool in its native state, without complements or customizations. However, Project Management professionals benefit from the features offered by the AddIn and also benefit from the consistency with which the information is displayed. The following picture shows the graph provided by the AddIn, with a more familiar representation for Project Management professionals. Here the baseline is shown until the end of the project, no drops in Earned Value and Actual Cost are shown, the status date is shown and an Estimate at Completion is even shown.

The above Graph can be combined with the Gantt Chart or the Kanban view, the latter only if your version of Project Professional allows it. Apparently, the manufacturer (today) does not offer such functionality (Kanban) in all product versions.

If you want to know more details about the use, consult our