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First published on TECHNET on Jan 22, 2014

As we approach the anniversary of Project Online’s release I thought it was worth highlighting a few of the usability changes we have made over the intervening months.  Thanks to the product group for making this happen – but thanks also to our customers for some of the great feedback that has led to some of these changes.  The latest changes first – and we have made it far easier for users of PWA that also have a license for Project Pro for Office 365 to find the download – now we have it right in the Get Started carousel.  This one is rolling out right now – if you don’t see it yet then it should be to your Project Online environment within the next week:



And the hover over tells you what this gets you – richer views and reports!



If you’ve already removed the Get Started carousel and want to take a new look – then just clicking the Gear icon and the Getting Started menu item will show you the same things.



And if you want it back on your home page – it is a Web Part so you can edit the page and find it listed under the Project Web App category.



You may have noticed another recent addition in the Get Started carousel too – just to the left of the Project Pro for Office 365 download link – the ‘New to Project Online?’ link.



This will take you to our TechNet page with plenty more useful information to help your journey with Project Online.  If you’ve got this far then you (or someone in your organization) has already carried out step 1 – but steps 2 and 3 will help get people and projects into your new online environment.



What else?  Well sometimes a blank page can be daunting – so we added some guidance if you aren’t seeing any projects to your Project Center:



Clicking ‘changing your view’ will bring the ribbon into play and show you the views dropdown:



Or ‘add a project’ will bring up a wizard to get you started with a new project – Or offer some other ways to get projects into your system:


*** Update 1/23 – even I got caught out with the new stuff here and didn’t have the lastest UI – so swapping out the next screenshot for the new ones.  This is the same experience you will see if you click on the left hand tile in the Get Started carousel – Create or import projects



Here we see the out of the box SharePoint Task List and Enterprise Project – as well as a couple of extra Enterprise Project Types I have added to my system.  I select Enterprise Project and click next:



Then I enter my project name, as well as any other information a different Enterprise Project Type might need in terms of custom fields, then click finish.  It will show working on it…, and then Hold on, creating he project and will then take you to the schedule page to begin entering your tasks:



end of updated screen shots ***


(We have also added wizards to the New Project experience in Project Center.)


*** Update 4/16/2014 - All fixed up - the new project wizard will be coming back over the next few days or so ***


*** Update 1/23 - There is a slight issue with the New Project experience from the ribbon in Project Center right now, and users may see the 'Working on it..." dialog just carry on spinning.  You should find that if you go to the Project Center it will have actually created your new plan.  Sorry for this inconvenience - I understand a timing issue with some required css updates led to this - but it should be resolved soon. ***


More magic to come – if you are creating a SharePoint Task list project then we take you straight to Edit mode – the original experience didn’t make it clear what you needed to do next.  So you get this:



rather than this:



Much better I think!


And there’s more… After you add your first task – it will automatically be added it to the timeline – just so you get the idea how it works and where to go to add further tasks to the timeline.



Another very useful addition to the project site is a way to get back to the Project Center – the ‘Projects’ link in the left navigation pane:



And following that link back we can get to one more of our new additions – more call-outs in Project Center.  Each project now has a quick way to see status, open or share the plan – or a few more quick links to delete, edit the resource plan, build team or go to the project site.



I hope you are finding all these changes useful and if you think we are still missing some tricks then I’d be more than glad to have comments.  Also thinking that we should switch gears and start pre-announcing some of this stuff so you know what is coming.  Thoughts?