Microsoft Increases Project Management Business Value and Extensibility With Microsoft Office Project 2003

BOSTON, June 4, 2003 — Microsoft Corp. today announced Microsoft®
Office Project 2003, the latest release of its project management family of products. Available later this fall, the Microsoft Project 2003 product line is integrated with the Microsoft Office System business productivity tools and is designed to meet the needs of two specific customer usage scenarios: Microsoft Office Project Standard 2003 for stand-alone desktop application use, and the Microsoft Office Enterprise Project Management (EPM) Solution, which is made up of Project Professional, Project Web Access and Project Server. Coupled with the familiarity of the Microsoft Office System, the EPM solution makes it easier for executives to gain visibility into their portfolio of projects and employees to collaborate on the documents, issues and risks associated with their projects.

Enterprise Project Management Enhancements

The Microsoft Office EPM Solution will help businesses increase efficiency, enable greater integration of project management into existing business processes, and broaden the use of project management tools. With tools such as the Project Center, business executives and project managers will be able to more easily track and communicate the status of their projects and resources across their organization, and use this data to make more-informed business decisions. Team members also will be able to contribute to projects using applications they currently use, including Microsoft Office Outlook® 2003 and Microsoft Windows Server (TM) 2003 with Microsoft Windows®
SharePoint (TM) Services.

“Customers are excited about the significant increases in visibility and resource utilization as well as the decreases in time to market they’ve realized from adopting Project in their organizations, and they’ve suggested some additional features to address their specific needs,”
said Chris Capossela, general manager of the Project Business Unit at Microsoft.
“The Microsoft Office Enterprise Project Management Solution incorporates those suggestions into the Microsoft Office System to create a solution that brings enterprise project management to more people. We expect these changes to spur greater adoption of project management across companies and increase our customers’ productivity and efficiency.”

Users of the EPM Solution will benefit from key enhancements in Microsoft Office Project Server 2003 that address data security, time reporting and risk management. Users also will find improved project portfolio and resource management functionality, greater reliability and a development platform that makes it easier to create customized solutions. Highlights include the following:

  • Microsoft Outlook integration. Project 2003 now is integrated with Microsoft Office Outlook 2003 to allow project tasks to appear in the Outlook Calendar view alongside appointments. Users can update progress on Calendar entries and report their status back to Microsoft Project Server directly from Microsoft Outlook.

  • Improved project collaboration. Integration with Windows SharePoint Services provides business executives with an easier means to assess project risks and issues. In addition, the document management features in Windows SharePoint Services provide a more robust structure for organizing documents in folders and subfolders, as well as check-in, check-out and versioning support to protect documents from inadvertent or unauthorized changes.

  • Enhanced resource management. Resource managers and project managers now have additional tools to help them find resources based on availability and their specific skills. Project 2003 also allows users to add resources to a project from within Project Web Access and enables them to highlight whether or not resources are tentatively assigned for potential work.

  • Extensible development platform. Project Server 2003 has an expanded set of APIs that enable partners and customers to develop custom solutions more easily and better integrate Project with line-of-business applications. Project Server also provides out-of-the-box synchronization with Active Directory to reduce the administrative burden of managing Project Server.

Customer and Partner Momentum

More than 1,000 companies already have streamlined their business processes, leveraged resources more efficiently and increased collaboration since the EPM Solution was first released last summer. Additional feature enhancements in the 2003 version of the Microsoft Office Enterprise Project Management Solution, which is still in beta version, have persuaded more companies to consider it for their project and resource management needs. Liebert Corp., a world leader in developing and manufacturing power and environmental systems and controls, is among the companies evaluating the Microsoft Office Enterprise Project Management Solution.
“Liebert and Microsoft are working together to deploy the tools and technology necessary for Liebert to improve global collaboration,”
said Russell Shetler, director of Engineering–Global Development at Liebert.
“We are exploring how Project 2003 can help us meet our goals to improve project team participation by leveraging familiar tools.”

Project partners also have played a strategic role in applying Project technology to a customer’s specific needs. Project 2003 has greater extensibility and integration to make the partner’s job much easier.
“The enhancements and new features in Microsoft Office Project 2003 will provide a more robust development platform for addressing our enterprise customers’ business problems,”
said Richard Cano, vice president of the Enterprise Productivity Group at Immedient Corp.
“Specifically, the new APIs and integration with other Office applications enable our development teams to provide an end-to-end Work Management solution that drives efficiency and productivity with our customers in a seamless manner.”

Desktop Integration Improvements

The desktop functionality of Microsoft Office Project 2003 — both the Standard and Professional editions — also has been enhanced. Customers now can create and print documents more easily, allowing project-related information to be shared more effectively in hard copy with team members, project managers and other stakeholders while on a job site or away from the office. In addition, customers can disseminate project-related information via other Office System applications, such as Microsoft Office Excel, Microsoft Office PowerPoint® and Microsoft Office Visio®

Such improvements were possible because Microsoft Office Project 2003 is a fundamental part of the Microsoft Office System and plays a key role in supporting users’ work and people management needs — when managing projects independently or when managing a project portfolio across a team, department or organization. The Microsoft Office Project 2003 product line includes the following:

  • Stand-alone desktop application

    • Microsoft Office Project Standard 2003. Project Standard 2003 is Microsoft’s core project management program, designed for project managers who need a desktop tool to manage projects independently. Project Standard 2003 will improve the project manager’s ability to organize work and communicate effectively and succinctly through familiar, easy-to-use tools.

  • Microsoft Office Enterprise Project Management Solution

    • Microsoft Office Project Professional 2003. Project Professional 2003 provides all the core scheduling tools in Microsoft Project Standard, plus powerful portfolio and resource-management capabilities when connected to Microsoft Project Server 2003. Microsoft Project Professional aids project managers who need to schedule projects, assign team members from a central resource pool to project tasks and involve team members in the reporting process to ensure project schedules stay up to date and accurate.

    • Microsoft Office Project Server. Project Server 2003 supports the portfolio management, resource management and collaboration capabilities in Microsoft’s EPM Solution. Project Server allows users to store project and resource information centrally for consistency and standardization across an organization. Project Server integrates with Microsoft Windows SharePoint Services for document management and collaboration capabilities that enable team members to work together effectively. Users connect to Project Server through Project Professional and Project Web Access to save, retrieve and interact with Project Server data.

    • Microsoft Office Project Web Access. Project Web Access connects people to the project and resource information in Project Server through familiar, easy-to-use tools. Team members, executives and resource managers can use Project Web Access through a Web browser to view, update and analyze information. Users must have a Project Server Client Access License (CAL) to use Project Web Access.

About the Microsoft Office System

The Microsoft Office System is an easy way to help more people use information to positively impact their business. Through a system of familiar and easy-to-use programs, servers and services, users can connect people and organizations to information, business processes and each other — helping ensure they derive the most value out of information. The Microsoft Office System consists of Microsoft Office 2003 Editions, Microsoft Office FrontPage®
2003, Microsoft Office InfoPath (TM) 2003, Microsoft Office OneNote (TM) 2003, Microsoft Project and Project Server, Microsoft Office Publisher 2003, Microsoft Office Real-Time Communications Server 2003, Microsoft Office SharePoint Portal Server 2003 and Microsoft Office Visio 2003. Enabling technologies, such as Microsoft Windows SharePoint Services, Microsoft Windows Server 2003 and Exchange Server 2003, enhance the features and functionality of products in the Microsoft Office System.

About Microsoft

Founded in 1975, Microsoft (Nasdaq
) is the worldwide leader in software, services and Internet technologies for personal and business computing. The company offers a wide range of products and services designed to empower people through great software — any time, any place and on any device.

Microsoft, Outlook, Windows Server, Windows, SharePoint, Active Directory, PowerPoint, Visio, FrontPage, InfoPath and OneNote are either registered trademarks or trademarks of Microsoft Corp. in the United States and/or other countries.

The names of actual companies and products mentioned herein may be the trademarks of their respective owners.

Note to editors: If you are interested in viewing additional information on Microsoft, please visit the Microsoft Web page at on Microsoft’s corporate information pages. Web links, telephone numbers and titles were correct at time of publication, but may since have changed. For additional assistance, journalists and analysts may contact Microsoft’s Rapid Response Team or other appropriate contacts listed at .

Related Posts