Actual Cost fields

The Actual Cost fields show costs incurred for work already performed by resources on their tasks, along with any other recorded costs associated with the task. The timephased versions of these fields show values distributed over time.

There are several categories of Actual Cost fields.

Data Type    Currency

Actual Cost (task field)

Entry Type    Calculated or entered

How Calculated    Until actual work is reported on a task, the Actual Cost field contains 0.00. You can choose to calculate all the actual costs as actual work is reported by each resource assigned to the task. This is the cost of actual work plus any fixed costs for the task to date. How and when actual costs are calculated depend on the assigned Standard Rate, Overtime Rate, Per Use Cost, and Cost accrual settings in the Resource Information dialog box.

Actual Cost = (Actual Work * Standard Rate) + (Actual Overtime Work * Overtime Rate) + Resource Per Use Costs + Task Fixed Cost

Best Uses    Add the Actual Cost field to a task view to review the resulting expense of a task. You can review this field while a task is in progress to see if you're staying within your budget. You can also review this information after the project is completed to help you plan costs for future projects.

Example    You're tracking costs on a task that has a 10-hour duration. The one resource assigned costs $20 per hour, and the resource has reported that the task is 50 percent complete. Microsoft Project calculates that the actual cost so far is $100. When the task is 100 percent complete, the actual cost will be calculated as $200.

Remarks    You can specify whether you want to enter actual costs or automatically calculate them. You do this in the Project Options dialog box. By default, the option to automatically calculate costs is selected. If you choose this option, any actual costs you've already entered will be cleared. If you choose to enter actual costs, Project will not calculate any actual cost values. However, it will continue to calculate remaining costs from the remaining work values. If you choose to have Project calculate actual costs, you cannot enter any actual costs until the task is 100 percent complete.

You can choose to enter actual costs or have Project calculate them for you. You can also enter actual costs for assignments and tasks on a timephased basis. In addition, you can set whether fixed costs are accrued at the start or end of the task or are prorated.

Actual Cost (resource field)

Entry Type    Calculated

How Calculated    If the resource has not yet reported any work on any assigned tasks, the Actual Cost field contains 0.00. As actual work is reported by the resource, Project calculates the actual cost. This is the cost of actual work plus any per-use costs for the resource. How and when actual costs are calculated depend on actual work and actual overtime work performed and the Standard Rate, Overtime Rate, Per Use Cost, and Cost accrual settings in the Resource Information dialog box.

Actual Cost = (Actual Work * Standard Rate) + (Actual Overtime Work * Overtime Rate) + Per Use Costs

Best Uses    Add the Actual Cost field to a resource view to review the resulting expense of a resource's work on all assigned tasks, based on the resource's actual work, hourly rate, and other incurred costs. You can also use this information at the end of a project to help you plan costs for staffing future projects.

Example    You're tracking costs for a resource who is assigned to 15 different tasks throughout the duration of the project. At any time, you can use the Actual Cost field to see how much this resource has cost so far. At the end of the project, you can use the Actual Cost field to see how much of the budget was spent for this resource to help with cost analysis and future planning.

Actual Cost (assignment field)

Entry Type    Calculated or entered

How Calculated    Until actual work is reported on an assignment, the Actual Cost field contains 0.00. You can choose to have Project calculate all the actual costs as actual work is reported by the resource assigned to the task. This is the cost of actual work plus any per-use costs for the assignment. How and when actual costs are calculated depend on actual work and actual overtime work performed and the assigned Standard Rate, Overtime Rate, Per Use Cost, and Cost accrual settings in the Resource Information dialog box.

Actual Cost = (Actual Work * Standard Rate) + (Actual Overtime Work * Overtime Rate) + Per Use Costs

Best Uses    Add the Actual Cost field to the sheet portion of the Task Usage or Resource Usage view to display or edit the resulting expense of an assignment based on actual work and the hourly rates of the assigned resources, along with any other costs. You can use this field while a task is in progress to see if you're staying within your budget. You can also use this information after the task is completed to help you plan costs for other tasks and future projects.

Example    You're tracking costs on a resource assignment for a task that has a 10-hour duration. The assigned resource is $20 per hour, and the resource has reported that the assignment is 50 percent complete. Project calculates that the actual cost for the assignment so far is $100. When the assignment is 100 percent complete, the actual cost will be calculated as $200.

Remarks    To specify whether you enter actual costs or have Project automatically calculate them go to the Project Options dialog box,. By default, the option to automatically calculate costs is selected. If you choose to enter actual costs, Project will not calculate any actual cost values. However, it will continue to calculate remaining costs from the remaining work values. If you choose to have Project calculate actual costs, you cannot enter any actual costs until the task is 100 percent complete.

Also, if you choose to enter actual costs, you can also enter actual costs for assignments and tasks on a timephased basis.

Actual Cost (task-timephased field)

Entry Type    Calculated or entered

How Calculated    Until actual work is reported on a task, the Actual Cost field contains 0.00. You can choose to have Project calculate all actual costs as actual work is reported by the assigned resources for the task. This is the cost of actual work plus any fixed costs for the task to date. How and when actual costs are calculated depend on the Standard Rate, Overtime Rate, Per Use Cost, and Cost accrual settings in the Resource Information dialog box.

Actual Cost = (Actual Work * Standard Rate) + (Actual Overtime Work * Overtime Rate) + Resource Per Use Costs + Task Fixed Cost

Best Uses    Add the Actual Cost field to the timephased portion of the Task Usage view to display the resulting expense of a task. You can review this field while a task is in progress to see if you're staying within your budget. You can also review this information after the task is completed to help you plan costs for other tasks and for future projects.

Example    Sean and Chris are assigned to the "Write proposal" task, which is scheduled for work from Monday through Thursday. They are both earning $20 per hour, and they have reported 20 hours of actual work on the task. You add the Actual Cost field to the timephased portion of the Task Usage view, and see that 5 hours of work are distributed across the 4 days. The timephased actual costs are, therefore, $100 each for Monday through Thursday.

Remarks    You can specify whether you want to enter actual costs or have Project automatically calculate them. You do this in the Project Options dialog box. By default, the option to automatically calculate costs is selected. If you choose to enter actual costs, Project will not calculate any actual cost values. However, it will continue to calculate remaining costs from the remaining work values. If you choose to have Project calculate actual costs, you cannot enter any actual costs until the task is 100 percent complete.

Actual Cost (resource-timephased field)

Entry Type    Calculated

How Calculated    If the resource has not yet reported any work on any assigned tasks, the Actual Cost field contains 0.00. As actual work is reported by the resource, Project calculates the actual cost. This is the cost of actual work plus any per-use costs for the resource. How and when actual costs are calculated depend on actual work and actual overtime work performed and the Standard Rate, Overtime Rate, Per Use Cost, and Cost accrual settings in the Resource Information dialog box.

Actual Cost = (Actual Work * Standard Rate) + (Actual Overtime Work * Overtime Rate) + Per Use Costs

Best Uses    Add the Actual Cost field to the timephased portion of the Resource Usage view to display the resulting expense of a resource's work on all assigned tasks, based on the resource's actual work, hourly rate, and other incurred costs. You can also use this information at the end of a project to help you plan costs for staffing future projects.

Example    Jamie, at $10 per hour, is assigned to 15 different tasks throughout the duration of the project. You add the Actual Cost field to the timephased portion of the Resource Usage view to see the actual costs incurred by Jamie's work so far. You might see timephased actual cost values such as $80 (8 hours at $10 per hour) for each day worked. If Jamie is assigned at fewer assignment units, you might see lower actual cost values. If Jamie has worked any overtime, you might see higher actual cost values.

Actual Cost (assignment-timephased field)

Entry Type     Calculated or entered

How Calculated     Until actual work is reported on an assignment, the Actual Cost field contains 0.00. You can choose to have Project calculate all the actual costs as actual work is reported by the resource assigned to the task. This is the cost of actual work plus any per-use costs for the assignment to date. When and how actual costs are calculated depend on actual work and actual overtime work performed and the assigned Standard Rate, Overtime Rate, Per Use Cost, and Cost accrual settings in the Resource Information dialog box.

Actual Cost = (Actual Work * Standard Rate) + (Actual Overtime Work * Overtime Rate) + Per Use Costs

Best Uses     Add the Actual Cost field to the timephased portion of the Task Usage or Resource Usage view to display the resulting expense of an assignment based on actual work and the hourly rates of the assigned resources, along with any other costs over time. You can review this field while a task is in progress to see if you're staying within your budget. You can also review this information after the task is completed to help you plan costs for other tasks and for future projects.

Example     Sean is assigned to the "Write proposal" task, which is scheduled for work from Monday through Thursday. Sean's standard rate is $20 per hour. Sean has reported 20 hours of work. Reviewing the Task Usage or Resource Usage view for this assignment, you see that 5 hours of work are distributed across the 4 days. The timephased actual costs are therefore $100 each for Monday through Thursday.

Remarks     To specify whether you enter actual costs or have Project automatically calculate them, go to the Project Options dialog box. If you select the option to automatically calculate costs, any actual costs you've already entered will be cleared. By default, this option is selected. If you choose to enter actual costs, Project does not calculate any actual cost values. However, it does continue to calculate remaining costs from the remaining work values. If you choose to have Project calculate actual costs, you cannot enter any actual costs until the task is 100 percent complete.

Applies To: Project 2007, Project 2010, Project 2010 Standard, Project Professional 2013, Project 2013 Standard



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