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Setting up the PPA environment

Before you create a scenario you need to identify at least one field on which to base your optimization. Any numeric project field in the project entity is available, however you might not want the list to be too long. By default, there are no fields configured for use; you must add at least one field. It's a good idea to pick a handful of fields that reflect a quantifiable project benefit. Common optimization fields are project Score, Revenue, or other Financial user-defined fields (UDFs). You specify these fields in the Optimization Fields tab of the Settings dialog.

There are several other configuration options that have default values. You can optionally modify these defaults:

  • Optimization Fields tab - configure utilization values

  • Grouping Fields tab - choose fields by which to group the scenario Chart output. These fields are typically lookup lists fields such as Project Type or Department. Recommend choosing a list with no more than 15 values.

  • Thresholds and Defaults tab - configure what percentage of a project must fit in the time horizon to be able to include the project in a scenario, and pick the heatmap type to display by default (you can configure heatmap color gradients in Admin/Organization/Resource Settings).

To set up the PPA module

  1. Navigate to the PPA tab and click the Settings buttongear_icon.pngto display the Optimization Settings dialog.


Optimization Fields

  1. Choose the fields that you want to offer as optimization inputs and click the right-arrow button to move them to the Selected Fields. The fields you choose will populate the "Optimize For" droplist when creating a scenario, as well as provide the comparison fields when comparing two scenarios.
  2. Pick the type of aggregation - options are Sum or Percent. The system will pick a logical default.
  3. (Optional) Select a default optimization field. The default field will be selected in the Optimize For droplist in the Create Scenario wizard. This is useful if you create lots of scenarios that use the same optimization field.

Grouping Fields

  1. (Optional) Click the Grouping Fields tab to select fields that you can use for grouping the scenario Chart output. For example, a grouping of None (always an option) results in all the bubbles in the bubble chart mingled together. If you have a fields call Department, for example, then the bubbles will be grouped by department so it will be easy to see what departments the projects fall into. The fields you choose will populate the Group By droplist in the output. Avoid removing a grouping field that was used in previous saved scenarios, because that will affect existing chart output.


Thresholds and Defaults

  1. (Optional) Click the Thresholds and Defaults tab to specify what percentage of a project must fit in the time horizon to be able to include the project in a scenario. For example, if you are planning for one year and the threshold is set to 50%, then at least 6 months of the project must take place during the horizon. The default value is 30%.
  2. (Optional) Click the Thresholds and Defaults tab to configure default settings for the heatmap display. You configure the displays for all resource utilization graphics throughout the PPM Pro product on Admin/Org/Resource Settings. For PPA, you can additionally choose the type of heatmap to display by default: Before vs. After Optimization, Before Optimization, or After Optimization. You can view all three options, this just configures the default view.


  1. Click OK.

Now your users are ready to create scenarios.