The IT Team Workspace template for Windows SharePoint Services 3.0 is very useful for tracking multiple projects and monitoring projects with an added emphasis for handling service requests. Once you've downloaded and installed the template you will be able to create a SharePoint site that can house tasks, projects, service requests and a simple dashboard. The IT Team Workspace also has a simple 'queue' view on the sites landing page to see the progress of all the issues in an IT department. In this example, we created two projects with IntelliGantt that we will share to our IT Team Workspace site. Below is a screenshot of an empty IT Team Workspace site we will share our two projects to.
There are several points of interest for this SharePoint template:
Sure, the dashboard is quite simple, but it's still conveying basic information on health for each project. And did I mention it's free? The dashboard uses helpful visual indicators to mark Status, Budgets and overall Task/Issue status. Let's put our IntelliGantt projects in to this IT Team Workspace.
Above are the two distinct IntelliGantt projects-- one a development effort and the other a meal plan-- that we want to track in one place but definitely keep separate. The first thing we will do is share Project 1 to the IT Team Workspace we created. To do so, right click on the project and choose 'Share' as shown below. (Note: in MS Project with the IntelliGantt Add In, you would have two separate MPP files and sharing each individually).
In the SharePoint share wizard we will provide the site URL into the top textbox and click 'Go'. IntelliGantt will query the site for available task lists you can choose from. IntelliGantt only uses out-of-the-box SharePoint web services-- the exact same way Microsoft Office applications communicate with SharePoint. There is nothing installed on the SharePoint server itself! (Note that the Share Wizard is exactly the same for both IntelliGantt and the IntelliGantt Add In for Microsoft Project 2007.) (More Detailed Information).
After sharing the project, because this template supports Project Lists, we will want to use the 'Report' command to send summary project information to the Projects List and link it with our tasks. Right click on the same project and choose 'Report'. (Note, in the IntelliGantt Add In you can find report under the IntelliGantt menu).
Like the Share Wizard, the Report Wizard requires a site URL and then a click on the 'Go' button. IntelliGantt will ask the site if it has any Project Lists web parts and list them for you to select. (More Detailed Information).
The first project has been shared and its summary inserted into the Projects List web part. If we refresh the site's home page we see the number of tasks has gone from zero to thirteen.
Furthermore, we have Project 1's summary information entered in to the Projects List and referenced with the tasks so that Project 1 knows its tasks and each task knows its project.
Performing the same set of operations with Project 2 results in Project 2 being listed alongside Project 1-- two distinct entries for our projects to group our tasks.
The tasks themselves are all in the Project Tasks web part, of which we see a section below. Note that all Project 1 tasks are grouped together automatically in the listing display.
With this simple SharePoint template you get basic tools to help you track and manage multiple projects with an emphasis on service requests and support. IntelliGantt makes it easy to add the tasks, add the projects and automatically perform the linkage between the two so they are conveniently grouped in the display. The rest of the site functions well for you to filter out your own tasks and items that might otherwise have fell through the crack.
And did I mention it's free?