Set Up Your Project Insight Settings

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Project Insight administrators


If you are setting up your Project Insight instance for the first time and are a systems administrator, user manager or project manager, then you this training is for you. This training covers the set up of the software and provides your project team with the foundation for a successful implementation.


  • Understand what each of the global settings is for and how they factor into portfolio reports
  • Learn the settings and options
  • Select the settings that are right for your business process

Key Points


Project Insight software is flexible and customizable so you can adapt the solution to meet your business processes 100%. An important part of meeting your business needs is creating the settings that make sense for your project team. Fortunately, it is simple to set up Project Insight. You do not need your IT department or professional services get going!


Let’s go to the Administration section of Project Insight. To get there, expand the left navigation.

Click on Administration to expand the section out.

The Administration section is organized with the most used functions at the top. They are grouped logically, making it easy to find relevant functions. For example, anything to do with team members that use the software is in the user section, anything to do with project set up is in the projects section.

You need to be a system administrator to change these settings.

We will cover the basic sections in today’s training session as some of the more advanced functions are covered in other training sessions such as the Determine Your Best Configuration Options and Secure Your Project Insight Data with Permissions.

Once you have learned how to enter information in one section, it is easy to add information in other sections as the interface is the same. Each set of data you enter is different and used for different purposes. But how you enter it is consistent, using inline editing.

To navigate in the Administration section, click on the arrow next to a section to expand it and see all the options below. For example, click on the right arrow for Users.

That section expands out and you can see all the sections below it. Click on the down arrow next to a section to collapse it again.

If you click right on the text for a menu option, for example click on the word Projects, it will bring up the first option in the sub-menu and expand it as well.

For example, it is showing you the Project Settings form and all the Projects sub-menu options.

Project Insight will also remember the sections you have expanded or collapsed and show those each time the same way.

Setting Up Your Work Schedule

One very important function of project management software is scheduling. When is the work going to be done? In order to schedule your tasks on your projects accurately, it is a best practice to set up your Work Schedule.

In the Projects section, click on Default Work Schedule.

Collapse the left navigation to get more room.

The Default Work Schedules define the default standard number of hours your team works, when those hours start and end and also it defines when your team does not work, such as what the company-wide holidays are.

Again all this information is essential in order for Project Insight to schedule when a task is going to start and when it is going to end.

Not every company works the same hours every day. Every company can have different schedules.

Even within your own company, you may have different teams that work different schedules. For example, maybe your field team works 12 hour days 4 days per week while everyone else works 8 hour days 5 days per week. Also, you may have teams in various geographical locations that work different start and end times. For example an 8 hour work day in the United States is standard, while a 7.5 hour work day in Canada is common.

You will want to set up default work schedules to represent the circumstances for how your team most commonly works.

This is a list of the Default Work Schedules that are set up.

You must have one Default Work Schedule and that is usually called the System Default.

This may be the only Default Work Schedule you have. If you have just one office, in one location and everyone works the same schedule, then all you may need is the System Default.

Or you may have multiple ones. In this case, the system administrator has added a Canadian Work Schedule and a UK Work Schedule.

One thing that is important to understand is that these are default work schedules only.

The information is used to create user specific work schedules, project specific work schedules and even task specific work schedules automatically.

The user, project and task work schedules that get created are the ones used for actual scheduling, however, they will reference the data set in this default schedules so that it reduces the amount of data entry you have to do to set up and maintain schedules and also it ensures consistency.

For example, since no one in your organization works on January 1st, you can set up that day as a non-working day once, in your default work schedule and then automatically apply it to every user.

If a new organizational wide holiday is introduced or if you are creating work schedules for future years, all you have to do is enter it once in the default work schedule and it is automatically applied to every user.

Adding a New Work Schedule

To add a new Default Work Schedule, just click in the gray line, type the information and click save. This is the standard way to add data in the settings.

For example, enter India Work Schedule, because you have a team in India. You might have multiple work schedules for one country but keep it simple and just enter one. Click in the gray blank line on the form and start typing. It is very simple and quick to do.

In most settings, you will have the name of the item and you will also have an Active column.

This indicates that the information is being used actively. If you uncheck it, that data is still retained in the system for historical reference purposes, but you cannot use it going forward. That helps to maintain data integrity and enables you to make changes without having to go back and change everything you had previously.

Finally, click the Save icon to save that information.

That India Work Schedule is now listed.

That is how you create a new setting and you will see that same process used in all the settings.

Editing a Work Schedule

You will notice that for each Work Schedule, there is an Edit icon and a Delete icon.

To edit a Work Schedule, click the Edit icon or double click anywhere on the white space on the line.

You are now in Edit mode and can make changes.

Click Cancel if you don’t want to make any changes.

Deleting a Work Schedule

To delete a Work Schedule such as the India Work Schedule, click the Delete Icon next to it.

You will get a confirmation prompt to confirm the delete.

Click OK.

You are not able to delete an item that is in use. For example, if you had set that India Work Schedule as the default schedule for a user, then you would not have been able to delete it.

In that case, set it to Inactive instead.

Again, that concept applies to all settings you see in this training session and not just the Default Work Schedule.

However, you may notice that the System Default Work Schedule has no delete icon.

As said earlier, you must always have at least one default work schedule, so you are never able to delete the System Default.

You could click the Edit icon to change the name though to make it more descriptive, such as US Work Schedule.

For now though, just leave it set as is.

Setting Up Default Work Hours

To set up the work hours and holidays for a specific work schedule, click on the name.

For example, click on System Default.

You can see that a standard work day has already been set up.

You have work from 8am to 12pm, one hour for lunch then work again from 1pm to 5pm.

Then Saturdays and Sundays are not scheduled work days.

The default work hours will be the hours that most of the team works. However, it is common to have some team members work different time schedules. Maybe some take a half hour lunch one day and leave at 4:30 instead of 5:00.

That is okay. When you define a work day in Project Insight in these default work schedules, you are defining your work day in general, not specific individual start and leave times. You can set specific individuals’ start and end times and different work schedules, but you do that separately from this.

Remember this is the default and what normally represents your default work day.

You do want to ensure that your Default Workday Length, your Default Workday Start and your Default Workday End are also set to represent the most common schedules in use.

You also want to set your full time equivalent data as well, such as the Hours per Day, Hours per Week and Hours per Month.

This information provides you with valuable resource allocation reports such as the number of full time employee equivalents (FTEs). This is the data used to make those kinds of calculation.

Also, make sure the Default Workday Length equates to the work hours you have scheduled in each work day.

The reason is that the Default Work day Length and Start and End values are used in different resource calculations than the work schedule which is used in scheduling.

If you do not set them to be the same, you may get inconsistent results in different places.

Holidays, Non-Working days and Special Days

You also want to set up the standard holidays. Click on the Holidays, Non-Workdays and Special Days tab. You can set up holidays and other corporate wide non-working days or times or special days.

For example, maybe you let everyone off on Dec 24th at 12:00pm. That would be a special day or if you gave everyone a bonus day off each year that may be a non-working day.

This is used mostly though to set up company-wide holidays.

Start by adding in a common holiday in North America, which is January 1st, or New Year’s Day.

Click on the Calendar for the first date.

Use the arrows to navigate to January, if necessary. Click January 1st.

If you have multiple day holidays, you can enter a range, but for now just leave one date.

The next step is to categorize that date. You need to specify why it is a non-working day.

For this case, click on Holiday.

Click the plus sign to add it.

You can see that date is now listed as a Holiday.

How you categorize the information in here affects the time entry grid. You can choose whether or not to show days marked as holidays on your time entry grid or days marked as shutdown or non-working times on the time entry grid.

Continue to set up all the holidays that you have, clicking the plus sign icon each time to add it to the list. You will want to set up a process where you enter your company wide holidays each year.

When you are done entering them all, you can check some other options.

Click on the Automatically re-calculate schedules now for active and planning projects which may be affected by the work schedule changes.

If you turn that option on, Project Insight will re-calculate the project schedules that are in active and planning state that are affected by the changes made. If you do not click this, these new schedules will be applied to existing projects, but only when project managers make changes to those projects.

You can also choose to send an email to the project managers of all active and planning projects which may be affected by work schedule changes.

Now all those changes are not saved in the system yet. To save them, you must click that Save option.

If you just exit out of this form without clicking save, none of those changes will be saved.

Click Save.

Add any other Default Work Schedules as you require.

Setting a Default Work Schedule for a User

These Default Work Schedules are set in different places. Each individual user has his or her own specific work calendar set up. That individual’s work calendar inherits the settings from one of the default work schedules.

To set the default work schedule for an individual user, click on the Expand Left Navigation icon.

Click on the Administration section to expand it.

Click on Users.

Click on the Edit icon for your user.

Click the Resource Info tab.

There is an option, Work Calendar Inherits From.

Click on the drop down.

You see those Default Work Schedules that you set up.

The information set here is used in two places.

First when a project creator adds a project, the work schedule set here is used as the default for the project level calendar but you can change it.

Second, the user’s specific work calendar inherits the settings from this calendar.

Creating Default Work Schedules for a Project

To see how that setting works on a Project, expand the left navigation.

Click on Folders.

Click on the Projects Folder.

Hover on the Add icon and select Project.

Collapse the left navigation.

This is the project add/edit form. More detail about all the data on this form can be found in Build Your First Project training session.

The Default Work Calendars that you just set up are used is in the Work Calendar Inherits From option.

It populates this field automatically with the default work schedule specified for this user, but you can click in the drop down to see change that if you require.

When you create this project, a specific project level calendar gets created for it automatically.

The information in that calendar will inherit the settings from the default work schedule set here.

Then, you can modify that project specific calendar if you need to.

That’s a quick overview of the use of Default Work Schedules. For more detailed information, attend the Setting up Global and Resource Work Calendars training session.

Setting up Project Types

When you add a Project, you can assign a Type to it.

Click in the drop down for the Type on the Project Add/Edit form.

These are the categories that you use for reporting on your projects and doing roll-ups by project types in your portfolio.

You define what these types are going to be, according to your reporting requirements and your business.

To see where you define them, In the Administration section, under Projects, click on Project Types.

This is where you set up the list that you just saw in the Type drop down on the Project Add/edit form.

Collapse the left navigation.

You add data here, the same way as you entered a new Default Work Schedule.

Click in the gray blank line and enter the name, such as “Field Services.”

There are a couple of additional columns on this form.

The code is an internal code that is usually used for integration purposes.

If you are integrating to a CRM system or an ERP system and they have special codes for project types, then you may enter that code here to make that connection. You will see this code column on a lot of the Project Insight Settings. If you are not doing an integration or data export to another application, then this is left blank.

Next is the Order.

This is also a common field on most lookup lists. By default, lists will display in alphabetical order by the name. If you want to override that order, simply type in a number in the order field to dictate which item appears first.

For this new one, enter 5 as the order number.

You can see the order in which they are set now, with the most common option usually set with order number 1. That number overrides the alpha-numeric sort order.

Then you have the active option, the save and cancel options, as you have seen previously.

Click Save to save that new Project Type.

Your projects can only belong to one Project Type. It is a one to one relationship.

If you want to create other project categories, where a project can be more than one type of category, then you can do that by creating custom fields. You can attend the Creating Custom Fields training session for more information on that.

Creating Project Status Indicators

Expand the left navigation.

In the Projects section in Administration, click Project Statuses. Project status indicators help you to manage projects by providing you and your executives and team members with highly visible, visual indicators as to a project’s health.

This is where you will set up the statuses that your project can have as it travels through your life cycle. Some examples that some of our clients use are: normal priority, caution, urgent, on hold.

You can set this list to reflect what status you use in your business process. You could use these options or define your own separate set of statuses.

You will see all the same information in this setting that you have seen previously, the name, code, order and active column.

However, there are a couple of additional columns that are specific to this setting.

The first, you will see is the Display Color.

When you define a status, you can have it display with a color associated with it.

This is extremely useful as the status is immediately visible and recognizable as it is displayed with a color.

To see how that works, click on My Insight to go to your Dashboard.

In your list of projects, you can immediately see the status of a project by the status symbol, then the status description next to it.

This will also show on your project reports.

Click on Reports.

Click on the Project Reports if it is not already selected.

Click on the General Project Reports section to expand that out.

Click on Project Dashboard to run that report.

That Status indicator lists here as well.

You can also see the Project Type on this portfolio level report.

Click on the Display Options for the Report.

Click on the Project Status & Condition Filtering Options section to expand that out.

You can filter projects on this report by both the status and the type.

Click on the Status drop down.

You could choose to display only projects that are marked with Caution or Urgent.

Click on the white space on the form to exit it out the drop down without making any selections.

Click on the drop down for Type.

You could choose to view only those projects with a certain type.

Click on the white space on the form to exit it out there without making any selections.

Click on the Project Status & Condition Filtering Options section to collapse that section.

Click on the Portfolio Group By / Sub Total Options to expand that section out.

Another common way to report on your portfolio is to group by type and or status.

In the Column drop down, enter Type.

Click the plus sign icon to add it.

Click in the Column drop down and click on Status.

Click the Plus Sign icon to add it.

Click the Run Report icon.

Now you can see your portfolio, grouped by type.

Click on the arrow next to the type to expand out that section.

Then you can also see it grouped by status.

Click on the arrow next to the Status to expand out that section and see the individual projects.

You can see the colors assigned to the status.

Changing the Status Indicator on a Project

Changing this status indicator on a project is the project manager’s responsibility.

There are separate automatic health indicators for a project.

You can see those by clicking and dragging the Indicators column header wider.

For example, this project is showing red for several different areas; including the schedule, budget and costs.

These are the automatic health indicators telling the project manager that there are problems. This project is not going according to the plan and they need to check those why and address it.

When they do that, then they should manually update the status indicator to reflect what is going on with the automatic indicators. The automatic indicators give the project manager the data they need to see if a project is going off track, but it still leaves the project manager in control of setting the over-all project status indicator, which is the project managers job to do. They need to be in control and pro-actively setting that status.

To Change the Status Indicator on a Project, click on the Project Name.

Click on the Edit Project icon.

Click in the drop down for the Status.

Choose the appropriate status.

Click Save.

Click on MyInsight to display your dashboard again.

There are three built-in colors for the status, green, yellow and red.

However, if you expand the left navigation and click on Project Status again, you will see there is also an option to Upload the Icon.

You can create your own status icon in any color and design that you choose and upload it.

For example, for On Hold, maybe you create a purple square to represent the on hold status and upload that.

Click on the Upload Icon text for On hold to do that.

Click Cancel for now.

It is recommended that if you are doing that, download one of the default image colors and modify that.

Click on MyInsight to display your dashboard again.

Right click on one of the colors.

A Project Insight context sensitive menu appears.

You don’t want this menu, you want the browser menu, so click Hide Menu.

Right click on one of the colors again. The menu option has changed.

Select Save Picture as.

Then save the picture with a different name. Then edit that one to ensure you are getting the correct size and properties for the new icon you are going to create.

That way, you can set whatever statuses and whatever colors you require. There are no limitations.

Percent Complete Types

Another setting that is used by Project Insight to determine those automatic health indicators are the percentage complete types.

Click on Work Percent Complete Types.

Collapse the left navigation.

Your team members are responsible for updating the % complete on a task as they work on it. This lets Project Insight know how far along the task actually is versus what is planned, and then the automatic health indicators are set based on that.

Setting an actual number for a % complete is great for your more analytical project teams.

However, in a lot of circumstances for it is difficult for your team members to figure out a number for % complete. It is 40% complete or 50% or even 60%.

Expecting teams to accurately estimate percentage complete can sometimes scare team members. If they are not used to that concept, that may impede you getting real time updates and reduce adoption of the system.

So to avoid all that, there is Work Percent Complete Types you can set up for your team to use instead.

You can see in this list that more user friendly terms have been set up to represent a % complete value.

In this case, Not Started is 0%, Started is 25%, In Progress is 50% and so on.

Using these terms, instead of numbers, makes it easier for your team members and removes that fear of entering wrong numbers and increases your adoption.

And it still provides the analytics to the back end of the system to do things like calculate health indicators and earned value and so on.

What you see here is a pretty common set of Work Percent Complete Types, but you could make them more detailed with smaller increments such as 10%, 20% and so on if you want tighter control on the earned value and status indicators.

It is up to you. Just make sure the terms associated with the percent completes are easy to understand and easily recognizable to your team.

You will see more where that is used in the Providing Team Member Updates and Track Your Time and Enter Expenses training sessions.

Entering Time and Expense Codes

When you are entering time and expenses, you can categorize those entries with codes.

To set up time and expense codes, expand the left navigation.

Click on the arrow next to Time, Expense & Invoice to expand that section.

Click on Time & Expense Codes.

Collapse the left navigation.

These settings contain quite a few more columns than any of the other settings.

Enter codes to categorize and further delineate the different types of time and expenses you are entering. Then you can report on these time and expense entries with more granularity.

Time codes can be something as simple as billable and non-billable or project and non-project work or they can be very detailed and this could be a very long list.

Expense codes can be the same but are more often more descriptive of the expense, such as travel, meals, hardware, software, and the like.

You always need at least one time and expense code set up before you can enter time or expenses. So at the minimum, create one called General and enable it for both time and expense entries.

That is this Time Entry column and Expense Entry column.

That would be the only circumstance where you have one code applicable to both time and expense entries.

Normally they are set to yes either for time or expenses but not both.

The next options are applicable to those organizations that bill external clients for the work they do on projects.

Click and drag the Enable Billable column headers wider to see the full text.

You can have a time or expense code billable or not.

Click and drag the Must Be Billable column headers wider to see the full text.

If a time or expense code is billable, then you can set it to must always be billable.

If it is not set to Must Be Billable, then team members can toggle on or off the time or expense entry as being billable or not, depending on the situation.

There are other rules you can associate with the time and expense entries, such as, would you allow them to be entered on companies, projects or only on tasks.

You can also require a description of the time entry, if it is being done for a company, project or task.

Click and drag the column headers wider to see those options.

This is more common if you are allowing company or project time entries. In that case, you have no other descriptive details about the time or expense entry so you may require your team member to always enter one so you know what it is for.

You can also set it for tasks, that is less common but still, some organizations require a description of each and every time entry.

Finally, you can set whether or not the time or expense code is available to show on invoices and that is the Inv. Time Line Entry and the Exp. Time Line Entry options.

Create Your Resource Departments

The next setting is your departments.

Expand the left navigation.

Click on the arrow next to Users to expand out that section.

Click on Departments.

The main use of departments is assigning team members to a department.

Once a user is assigned to a department, you can assign resources from the same department to a project by using ‘Add Department.’ You can also view a directory of users filtered by department.

The other way a department is used is that you can assign a project to a department and then run a report of projects by department. This is often used by organizations that do internal, strategic projects. You want to capture the department that requested the project.

List Your User Types

The other way you can categorize users is by a user type.

In the Administration section, under Users, click on User Types.

You can a view a directory of users filtered by User Type.

A very common set of Users Types is Contractors, Customers, Employees and Vendors.

User types are optional. You do not have to use them. So if you only have internal staff accessing the system, then you may just leave this blank.

Set up Skill Sets or Resource Type/Roles

You don’t want to confuse User Types with the next setting which is Resource Type/Role.

Under the Projects section in Administration, click on Resource Type/Role.

This is where you define the different resource types or resource roles that you require on your project in order to accomplish the work.

Where User Types are used to filter your list of users and is just a reference that does not have any backend reporting functionality associated with it, Resource Types/Roles are used to perform resource management and other resourcing functions such as automatically assigning users to tasks depending on the abilities they have and the type of work required on the task.

You can see some common Resource Type/Roles set up here, such as Project Manager, but your organization will have different roles depending on the kind of work you do.

You will want to define all the different skill sets that you require to do work on projects and then set that up here.

When you create a task in a project plan, you can indicate what resource type/role is required to complete the work on that task and you do that by choosing a role from this list you set up here.

When you add your users, you will identify what skill sets they have by choosing from this list. Users can have more than one resource type/role assigned to them, which means they could do different types on work on a project.

Project Insight will then match the resource type/role required on the task with those users who also have that resource type/role as part of their skills to provide you with some very powerful resource management functionality. That is covered in more detail in the Resource Allocation and Balancing Workloads training sessions.

You will notice that there are two additional columns on the Resource Types/Roles form, and that is the Default Expense Code and Default Time Code.

You can set which expense code and time code is used most of the time for this Resource Type/Role. That way, it reduces the amount of data entry needed when entering time and helps to eliminate errors. This is optional. It does not have to be filled in. Project Insight will check to see if there is a default time and expense code set at the task level and use that as the default for the time or expense entry if there is one. If there is not, then it uses this default. If this one is not filled in, then it uses the default set for each user. Of course, you can also override any of these defaults when you do your actual time and expense entries.

Create Options for Issue Tracking

The last setting that you are going to see is for issue tracking. Tracking of issues is a standard project management practice and most customers use this feature.

Click on the arrow next to Users to collapse that section.

Do the same for Projects and Time, Expense & Invoice settings.

Click on the arrow next to Issues to expand that section.

Click on Issue Types.

This is your first issues setting.

All of these settings, as well as the entire process for managing issues is covered in the Track, Manage and Report on Issues training sessions, if you need more detail than what is covered in this session.

Project Insight is very flexible about how you can categorize, track and report on issues and your system administrator can set that up to support your business process.

Issue Type is where you categorize the different types of issues that occur. Normally issues are related to a project but they don’t have to be. You can create issues independent of a project. If you do that, your system administrator will have set up folders and processes you should follow.

Issue Types are used for reporting purposes and you can create issues logs, charts or graphs by issue type.

The only new column in this form is the Default Value column.

If you have one issue type that is most commonly used, you can set it as the default, by clicking the edit icon and clicking the Default value checkbox.

Only one issue type can be set as the default and if you check that option for one, but another one is already set as the default, this one will become the new default.

Click Cancel to exit without making any changes.

You may talk to your team and reference previous issues list to define what your issue types will be.

Next, click on Issue Priority Types.

This is where you set the priority of the issue. Some common examples are low, medium, high and urgent. You may also just want to enter a number in here, such as 1, 2 and 3.

Priority types are also used for reporting purposes and to determine what order issues should be worked on.

Click on Issue Severity Type.

This is another way to identify an issue. Severity identifies how the issue impacts a project.

Some common severities are minor, major and critical.

Click on Issue Status Type.

Status types are used to indicate the different phases of the life cycle that your issues go through. They are used for reporting purposes and to manage the issue.

The last configuration item is the resolution type.

Click on Issue Resolution Type.

You always want to know from a reporting perspective whether an issue was resolved or not. This is a valuable reporting tool. Your simplest form of resolution type may just be a resolved and unresolved type.

That is how you set up all of your main Project Insight Settings.

You may find that these settings evolve as your project management processes mature and you can always come back to these settings and add new ones or make existing ones in-active as you require.

Some of this information is covered in more detail in the training session topics to which they are applicable.

To get more information on some of the other options in the Administration section that weren’t covered in today’s session, you may want to attend the Determine Your Best Configuration Options training session.

Online 7/30/2015
Updated on: