Project Basics and Set up

 

A project is a container that helps in reporting and managing information. A project can contain only one Template but can support multiple products. SAP Cloud ALM allows creation and management of multiple parallel projects. One Project contains one Project team.

In order to start working in SAP Cloud ALM you need to create a project.

A template is a predefined set of tasks that helps you accelerate your implementation. Currently SAP Cloud ALM offers only a subset of templates provides by Activate methodology. If you find the task list provided by the template insufficient then you can enrich it by a mass upload of tasks and Deliverables.

Selection of a Project template is not mandatory to create a Project. Also once selected the template can be switched at a later stage.

It is possible to change the task template during the project, but the authorization to make the change is only available to the project administrator.

A change of template results in the permanent deletion of the generated template tasks from SAP Activate and should only be carried out for essential reasons.

User stories, manually created tasks, and tasks generated from requirements are not impacted by a template switch. 

Tasks that come from a Template in a Project follow a three level Hierarchy: Phases>Deliverables>Tasks

Timebox:

Anything that can provide a due date to a task type is called a timebox. You can think of it as a time range of 1 up to n days.

 Different kinds of Timeboxes in SAP Cloud ALM:

SAP Cloud ALM provides three different kinds of Timeboxes

  • Phase
  • Sprint
  • Milestone

Phase:

The list of phases in SAP Cloud ALM is provided by SAP Activate methodology. The supported phases in SAP Cloud ALM are:

  • Prepare
  • Explore
  • Realize
  • Deploy
  • Run

Each of these phases has a start date and an end date. The list of phases is fixed. You cannot add or delete a phase. This is to ensure that implemented Projects use terms consistent with Activate methodology.

Note: Phase had only one date maintained in SAP Cloud ALM previously. After latest change , the phase has now both start and end dates. You should revisit the phase dates to ensure they are in line with your project plan and expectations.

 

Sprint:

You can work with phases or sprints or combine both timeboxes.

 

You can add or delete sprints easily. After creating a sprint plan , you can use this to assign due dates for tasks and user stories. The sprint automatically shows in the Past section after the due date for the sprint has passed.

Milestone:

Milestone is a special timebox with only an end date.

 

You can add or delete milestones.

When you add more milestones, they get automatically sorted in a chronological order i.e. according to the due dates of the milestones.

How to use Timeboxes:

Timeboxes help you plan your project in lower level of granularity. You can use the timeboxes to assign precise dates to tasks and user stories.

Another advantage is dynamic date assignment. Example if you assign 100 tasks to a timebox such as “Integration test”. If the milestone date for “Integration Test” is changed, the due date of all tasks assigned to the milestone is changed automatically.

How Timeboxes relate to each other:

Timeboxes can work independent of each other or with each other. You as a customer have a choice to decide how you work.

Phase has special status:

The Phase time box has a special status. It is used as fall back for sprint or milestone. Also tasks assigned to sprint or milestone try to find the matching phase and if the match is found then phase information is shown as sub-header in the task list.

Aligning sprint dates to phases:

Sprints exist directly at Project level. Aligning sprint dates to phase dates is not mandatory but highly recommended. System tries to determine the matching phase based on the sprint dates. The end date of the sprint is considered and system tries to determine from the end date of the sprint, what is the matching phase. if a matching phase is found , its shown as sub-header as in screenshot above and the filters for phase will also find tasks assigned to sprints which can be matched to the phase.

In case you maintain sprints in no relation to the phase, you will not get a nice experience using Timebox filters for phase.

If you are a customer who works in continuous delivery , that is if you do not use the term phase at all, in that case we would recommend you model just one phase as an example  “Run” and map all your sprints to the Run phase

What happens if I change the due date manually after Timebox assignment

The advantage of using timeboxes is tasks get automatic updates when the dates of Timebox are changed. As task is in a way “locked” to timebox when the initial assignment happens.

But in case you assign a task to the timebox and later change the due date manually, in this case the task is in a way “unlocked”. This means it still shows related to the timebox but can have a due date which can be outside the range of a timebox.

What happens if a Timebox is deleted

When you delete a timebox, as an example a milestone, the due date of the task or user story is retained and system tries to determine the matching phase as a fall back.

When a sprint or milestone is deleted, the associated phase is used as a fallback to set the due dates.

The explanation of the Activate phases are:

Why multiple teams in a Project:

As Projects can be bigger in size , the Project lead may want to track different areas of work differently. As an example the Project lead my want to divide the Project user base by

  • Countries
  • Lines of Business
  • Org structure
  • Special focus eg Auditing and compliance
  • Workstreams

or any other business reason. That's why its important that the Project has more than one team.

 

How to create multiple teams:

You can navigate to the teams tab in a Project and click on create

 


The next screen allows you to create a  short Team Title , a longer Team description and add persons to the designated Project roles

please note you can delete the user created teams later.

 

What is the system defined default team called "PMO Team"

When you create a new Project , system creates one team by default called “PMO team”. This team can not be deleted

PMO stands for Project management Office. Each team consists of set of Project roles but one Project role called “Project lead” has special privilege . A Project lead can as an example

  • Perform project setup
  • Maintain Project timelines
  • Maintain Project team information

This role “Project Lead” appears only in  “PMO team” which is created by the system. Please note if you use different terminology , you can change this name but please understand that the role “Project Lead” can not be added to a user created team.

How to work with teams:

You can use the defined teams for Task assignments and then use them for filtering. You can also create views in your task list for teams.

The purpose of this task is to assign team members to the delivered roles. These roles are used to filter the view of the tasks to what is relevant to each team member. Once assigned, the roles can be individually maintained in the 'Tasks' view in order to fine tune the responsibilities.

See the in-app help in the Teams view for more details

The Open Application button will navigate to the Team view.

Procedure:

  1. Project Lead can assign the users to the roles by entering the email addresses.
  2. The SAP Cloud Admin needs to approve the added users using User Administration
  3. Additional people can be added later in the project by returning to this view.

Roles in a Project:

A project comes with a pre-delivered set of roles provided by Activate methodology. 

How to add a custom Project role:

SAP Cloud ALM comes preloaded with list of roles from SAP Activate methodology, we decided to give you the flexibility to extend it.

Go to Manage Projects and click the tab called Roles.

 

You can navigate to this and click to create a New Project role, you can also give a Description and save.

In this example, it is “My Custom role“. The role appears in role list with a special icon after saving.

 

How to use the newly created Project role:

You can navigate to the desired Project, go to team setup and you will find the newly created role.

 

You can assign persons to it and use it as other Project roles in the system.

What access is given to the person assigned to custom Project role?

At this stage all custom Project roles are mapped to the Project member authorization role.