Multiple Owners – Webinar FAQ

Multiple Owners Preview Webinars

January 7 & 8, 2015

NOTES
  • Many questions were submitted live during our three webinars.  Others were written to clarify functionality.
  • Some questions have been re-worded to be more clear, and therefore are not direct quotes from attendees.
  • Questions related to the edit panel were included, since those changes occurred as a result of adding Multiple Owner functionality.
  • If you don’t see an answer to what you asked and still have questions, please contact support@liquidplanner.com and we’ll get you an answer as well as updating this FAQ if applicable. Thanks!
(1) SCHEDULING / PRIORITIZING

Q: If a multiple owner task is moved into an ASAP package, how does this work? What if only one owner’s portion needs to be raised in priority?
A: Prioritization of a task affects all owners. If priorities need to be set differently, best practice is to continue to have separate tasks.

Q: If the shared task priority is over-ridden using a higher (or lower) level package, that new priority affects all of the shared users… correct?
A: Yes

Q: We utilize people packages. When a task has multiple owners how do you also move this task up into more than one person’s package?
A: You cannot prioritize one task in multiple locations, thus people packages won’t work with multiple owner tasks. This is a use case when having one owner per task is more appropriate.

Q: Did you consider a ‘work simultaneously’ option for assignments? E.g. where all owners have to work on the task at the same time, like a joint meeting?
A: For joint meetings, we recommend using Partial Day Events to ensure that all owners are scheduled at the same time. “Work simultaneously” on tasks isn’t possible with our scheduling methodology taking availability and priorities into account for each owner. Partial Day Events may not always be appropriate, so another way to model this is to have the multi-owner task in the higest priority position, thus all members will be scheduled to begin any remaining work today. For work that needs to be done together in the future, use a Delay Until Date for this top priority task, and then when the date arrives, since that task is at the top, all the lower priority work will get interrupted until the highest priority task is complete.

Q: What if a task can’t start until all owners are free?
A: See answer above

Q: Will there be support for “Work Together At The Same Time”? But many tasks require that work be done “Together”, meaning the owners are working together AT THE SAME TIME. Examples of this case would be anything from code reviews to remote network tests to my case of two-person construction tasks.
A: See answer above.

Q: What is the default? (Work in order or independently?)
A: “Work independently”

Q: If I’m passing something back and forth, can I add my own name to the task twice and put the other person in the middle?
A: No. This is a use case for having separate tasks with dependencies to model the true workflow. However, with good communication and collaboration between the owners, you could certainly have just one task and indicate the actual workflow with checklist items.

Q: Can we set a Daily Limit at a project or package level yet or can this only be done at a task level?
A: Daily limits are only for tasks currently. They are set for each individual owner, not the task as a whole.

(2) OWNERSHIP / ASSIGNMENT TRANSFER

Q: How do you replace one owner with another on a project basis? E.g. replace owner A with owner B on all tasks in a project, rather than having to go through each task?
A: Use multiple select and edit in bulk.

Q: When creating tasks, can I reassign a task and remove myself? (I often try to do this when doing preliminary planning, so that people who are getting notifications on tasks assigned to them don’t get a ton of emails)
A: You can reassign a task to someone else and that will remove you as an owner – unless you have logged progress. (Additional details about this below.)

Q: What if there are both logged AND remaining hours for person A? Can those remaining hours be reassigned with keeping the visibility to person A’s logged hours?
A: If person A has logged progress (tracked time), when you re-assign the task to person B – rather than being removed from the task and replaced by the new owner, person A will be shown as an owner, with his/her assignment marked “done”. That will correspond with the hours logged. The remaining effort estimate will be associated with the new person.

Q: Can I delete an owner who has logged time?
A: No. See above. If the time was logged in error, it can be removed from the timesheet, then it is possible to delete the owner.

Q: Can one of the multiple owners be “Unassigned?”
A: Yes, but if there’s an estimate, a flag will be present. It says: “Remaining Work With No Owner – [TASK NAME] has work remaining but is not assigned to anyone.

Q: Can a portal guest co-own a task?
A: Yes. As with current functionality, the portal guest won’t see the task unless: the project is open as a portal, the task has been shared on the portal, and the person has been invited into that portal.

(3) ESTIMATION / LOGGING PROGRESS

Q: If you log progress to a task owned by another member, you will automatically be added as a second owner?
A: Yes

Q: (Follow up to the above…) That can’t be disabled?
A: No. This is simply exposing (in a more obvious way) what was already happening in the task history, which shows all members who have logged hours on a task.

Q: When logging progress, can you reduce the total estimate of the task and not individual estimates?
A: No. Estimates belong to the individual owners and those owners may still need to do the amount of work still estimated. Best practice is always to verify that any/all estimates are still correct after logging progress.

Q: Is it mandatory to assign (estimate) hours for each owner, or can you estimate the task as a whole and have logged progress take away from the total remaining estimate?
A: Each person must have their own estimate, but there is a roll up shown in the project grid for the task as a whole.

Q: If you log time on the timesheet on another member’s task, does that automatically add you as an owner?
A: Yes

Q: If there is no estimate for an owner, will that affect when the task is scheduling?
A: Tasks without estimates are ignored from a scheduling standpoint, HOWEVER, priorty order still plays a part. Let’s say there are two owners on a task and it’s highest priority in the workspace. Owner A’s portion is estimated and Owner B’s is not. Both owners will see the task listed first on “My Tasks”, but for Owner B, the next highest estimated task in priority will be scheduled to start immediately since there’s no estimate on the one task that is of higher priority.

Q: If you log hours for another member’s task, does that reduce the time remaining of the task?
A: If you log progress FOR the member, their remaining estimate will decrement. If you log hours for yourself on another member’s task, the remaining estimates for other owners will not change.

Q: If a task is marked ‘Done’, as a whole, when there are multiple owners – what happens if you change your mind… do all the task estimates go back to non-zero?
A: Yes. The remaining estimate, for each assignment, at the time the task was marked done, will re-populate when you make it active again.

(4) ADDING / IMPORTING

Q: Can you assign multiple owners when importing from a file?
A: No.

Q: Can you assign multiple owners when using the Add Multiple task dialog box?
A: No.

For the above two questions, adding additional owners must occur after the tasks have been created. Bulk editing may come in handy.

Q: Can I import a CSV file that includes a “default_activity” for each owner of a multiple owner task?
A: No.

Q: Can I import a single “default_activity” for a task that applies to all owners of that task?
A: No, but you can edit tasks in bulk and set the default activity. Then, all additional owners will inherit the default task activity on their assignment row.

Q: Related to importing – how will EXPORTING change?
A: There will still be one owner column and it will contain all owners if there are multiple. As will the owner_id column. The default_activity column will show the activity for the task, not for each individual’s assignment. The start and finish date columns will reflect the task as a whole, not each person’s portion. The total_done column will reflect the task’s total hours logged. If individual time entries or activities are needed, using the Timesheet Export filtered to a project will provide more granular owner-specific information.

(5) NOTIFICATIONS

Q: How do the notifications work? If one person’s assignments are modified, does every owner on that task get a notification?
A: Notification functionality has not changed. Whether you are the only owner, or one of several, you’ll get all the same notifications – based on your notification settings.

(6) API

Q: How about API? We are using read-write calls to interact with the workspace. Are there any “how to update” tutorials to know what needs to be changed in software that uses API?
A: Please find instructions for API updates HERE.

(7) GENERAL FUNCTIONALITY

Q: Why did we add this?
A: Some tasks only require one assigned owner to get the job done. That individual will work on his/her task until completion and move the project forward. However, other tasks require multiple hands, either working at the same time or in sequential order. Multiple owners reflects the way people work. Additionally, our customers have been asking for this enhancement for some time. We created a way that multiple people can own a task while keeping intact the visibility and accountability inherent to our product.

Q: Will our existing projects have this feature incorporated on Monday or do we have to create a new project to get the features enabled?
A: Multiple owner functionality is being rolled out globally and there is nothing to enable. It will be seen and functional on all existing tasks as well as new ones.

Q: Can there be more than one owner of a project? Or is this just for tasks?
A: Multiple owners is for tasks only.

Q: I don’t see the add people option?
A: Add additional owners (people) to a task in the Planning section of the edit panel. The blue “Add People” link sits below any existing owner(s).

Q: Can you enter a Max Effort for each owner?
A: No. Max Effort is for the task as a whole.

Q: Can each owner have their own deadline?
A: No. The deadline on the task is for the task as a whole.

Q: Can I set a “delay until” on just my part of a task?
A: No. The Delay Until date will delay the whole task.

Q: Can I put just my part of the task “on hold”?
A: No. Putting a task “on hold” affects the entire task.

Q: How do I decide whether to add multiple owners or multiple checklist items?
A: Assigning multiple owners is ideal when each person has more than a few minutes of work. This way, each contributor’s schedule is as accurate as possible because each owner has their own estimate. Checklists still come in quite handy to show exactly who is doing what when working together.

Q: Is there a way to define who is ultimately responsible for the task? (Not only as owner, but responsible to track progress, inform, etc?)
A: By adding an owner, we feel that it’s implicit that everyone is responsible – but we recommend having specific business rules for your team to make sure that everyone understands your goals and how you are using LP.

Q: Can you force a particular owner to be the last to close the task and therefore be responsible for the final check of all notes and checklist items?
A: When the last owner marks their assignment done, the task will be marked done. No “forcing”. We recommend setting business rules with your team so that you have a defined process that everyone has agreed to and/or can follow.

Q: What does “Convert” function do in the Planning section? (Also asked as: What is the “Convert” drop down next to “Work Independently”?)
A: You can change plan item types if desired. E.g. Convert a Task to a Milestone or Event.

Q: What happens when I convert a one hour meeting (Partial Day Event) for 3 people into a task?
A: The three people who were owners of the meeting will each have their own assignment row, and the estimate for each person will be 1-1h.

Q: Can you make the circular quick navigation buttons on the top of the screen stay there, or when you scroll down will they always disappear?
A: The jump links at the top of the edit panel disappear from view now in order to show more of the edit panel, but an arrow will appear to jump you back to the top.

(8) RECORDINGS / TRAININGS / VIDEOS / ONLINE HELP

Q: Did you record this training? Or will online training be available at the time it’s released? I’d like to use this to show my team the changes.
A: We recorded three live webinars – they were all identical, other than the questions at the end. One of them is posted for viewing here.

Q: What about Essentials and Advanced trainings – will they show this new functionality too?
A: Yes, we are updating all of our future training and webinar scripts, as well as support materials and videos to reflect the ability to have multiple owners on tasks. We’re working hard to have all of this live prior to release, but some may follow shortly after.

Related Links

Help Article: Multiple Owners
Announcement Page: Multiple Owners
Release Notes: Release 52
LP Online Help with links to articles, videos, webinars

Multiple Owners – Webinar FAQ was last modified: January 9th, 2015 by liquidplanner