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Understanding Task Duration and Duration Type Overview

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Understanding Task Duration

The task duration is the difference between the planned completion date and the planned start date of the task. The duration indicates the timeframe that is available for the task to get completed.

Understanding Task Duration Type

The duration type of a task identifies the relationship between the number of resources assigned to a task, the total effort, and the total duration of the task. It enables you to set consistent resource assignments based on the needs of the task. 

Duration type helps to answer the following questions:

  • How busy are we going to be?
  • How big is the job?
  • How long is it going to take?

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Defining Duration Types

Duration Type 

Function

How Resources Affect It

Calculated Assignment

 

Calculates the allocation percentage for each assignee on a task. 

When you choose this duration type, you can input individual Duration and Planned Hours for the task. Workfront divides the Planned Hours by the number of hours inside the Duration of the task, then by the number of resources assigned to the task to calculate the allocation for each assignee.

For more detailed information, see "Calculated Assignment Duration Type."

Duration and planned hours do not change when adding or removing assignees to the task. 

Calculated Work

Determines the planned hours (amount of effort) required for the task to be completed.

Normally used when the resources assigned to the task are allocated for the entire duration of the task.

When you choose this duration type, you have the ability to input an individual duration for the task. Workfront calculates the planned hours for the task by multiplying the number of days in the duration by the number of work hours in the schedule and by the number of assignees to the task. 

You have the ability to manually change the allocation percentage of each assignee to the task which will shorten the amount of the planned hours.

For more detailed information, see "Calculated Work."

Planned hours increase when assignees are added to the task. 

Planned hours decrease when assignees are removed from the task.

Effort Driven

Determines the planned hours based on the number of resources.

When you choose this duration type, you have the ability to input an individual duration for the task. Workfront calculates the planned hours for the task by multiplying the number of days in the duration by the number of work hours in the schedule and dividing that by the number of assignees to the task.  

You have the ability to manually change the allocation percentage of each assignee to the task, but the number of planned hours remains the same.

For more detailed information, see "Effort Driven Duration Type."

Planned hours increase when assignees are removed from the task.

Planned hours decrease when assignees are added to the task. 

The duration does not change. Duration is equal to planned hours. Planned duration is equal to planned hours divided by the number of assignees.

Simple

Determines the planned hours and the duration (which are the same, for this duration type) based on the number of hours each assignee is allocated for. 

When you choose this duration type, you can input a custom duration for a task, but you cannot enter a custom value for the Planned Hours on the task. Workfront calculates the Planned Hours by adding up the planned allocated hours for each assignee. 

You have the ability to manually change the amount of hours that each assignee is allocated for, and the number of planned hours and the amount of the duration changes accordingly. If you choose a total number of allocated hours for all the assignees, that number is divided equally between each assignee.

For more detailed information, see "Simple Duration Type."

Hours are distributed evenly among assignees if you choose a total number of allocated hours. However, as the project manager, you can manually adjust the hours for each assignee. 

Users cannot manually enter duration and planned hours, but they can manually allocate hours (instead of percentages) to each assignee. 

Changing The Duration Type For A Task

  1. In a task list, click the name of the task for which you want to change the duration type.
  2. On the Task Details tab, ensure that Overview is selected, then click Edit Overview.
  3. In the Duration Type drop-down field, select the desired duration type.
  4. Click Save.

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