Placeholders are a way of scheduling a project when you don’t yet know who in your organization will be performing the work. Like people, Placeholders can be assigned a role, discipline, and a custom bill rate, so you can see how their assignments will impact your project budgets.
Placeholders can help you with some of the most important tasks in your organization:
- Budgeting a project – Placeholders allow you to create assignments for specific roles and disciplines, without impacting someone’s actual schedule or utilization. The Placeholder can be set up with any bill rate you’d like, giving you accurate quotes for new business.
- Resource Manager workflow – Account managers can use Placeholders to request a team member from a Resource Manager. In one scenario, an assignment for a Placeholder indicates to a Resource Manager that someone needs to be assigned to that project.
- Projecting staffing needs – When signing on future work, you can use Placeholders to schedule those projects. Once they’re scheduled, utilization reports will show you what disciplines can handle the workload and where you may need to staff up or hire a freelancer.
- New hire or position – Want to see what kind of impact a new hire will make to your workload? Placeholders are a great way to assign that work and see how things land. Once you make a hire, you can reassign those assignments to the new person on your team.
Placeholders can be created by going to Placeholders in the Settings > Account Settings menu. Creating a Placeholder is similar to adding a person; you can enter a name for the Placeholder, select a role and discipline, enter a specific bill rate, and even select the same Custom Fields you previously set up for people. Placeholders also allow you to use an image based on an abbreviation and color that you specify so you can quickly differentiate these team members from your other staff.
Adding Placeholders on the Project Page
Placeholder assignments can be added to a project from either the Project Schedule or the Project Worklist.
On the Schedule, click on a phase or any white space on the Schedule canvas and select "Add Team Member" to apply filters or to search for the name of the appropriate Placeholder.
On the Worklist, hover or click on the name of the project or phase which will surface a panel that allows you to "Add Team Member." From here, search for the name of the appropriate Placeholder.
Adding + Filtering Placeholders on the Schedule
You can add Placeholder assignments to the schedule just like an assignment for any person. To create a new assignment, click on any white space on the Schedule and select New Assignment.
By default, Placeholders appear at the bottom of the schedule. Like People, you can filter your criteria to find both the Placeholders and People you’re looking for. Placeholder assignments appear semi-opaque, indicating that those assignments belong to a Placeholder.
The Assignment Status filter allows you to only view assignments for your staff or for Placeholder team members. Confirmed assignments are staffed to actual People in the account, while Placeholder assignments are specifically for Placeholder team members.
Placeholders in Reports
Like People, you can you filter your criteria to find both the Placeholders and People you’re looking for. You can also choose to group your reports by Assignment Status, which separates Placeholder assignments and Confirmed assignments.
The Assignment Status filter allows you to view only certain types of assignments in Reports. Confirmed assignments are staffed to actual People in the account, while Placeholder assignments are specifically for Placeholder team members.