At the end of 2022, Oracle released its newest version of P6: Primavera P6 Professional 22.12. Although P6 is such a seasoned product, these updates always manage to add a variety of new features. These added capabilities give users more flexibility in viewing and managing project schedules.

Let’s take a look at some of the new additions to Primavera P6 22.12. Because there were so many features added, this article will group enhancements together by process type. We will start by looking at the enhancements to viewing and analyzing project data. Then, we will go over the new capabilities for adjusting project data. Lastly, we will take a look at the many enhancements made to the import/export process.

Enhancements to Viewing and Analyzing Project Data

For CPM schedulers, analyzing performance throughout the project is key. It’s important to track project data to ensure that the schedule is on time and within budget. Primavera P6 Professional 22.12 has added a ton of new features to help analyze and view your schedule.

View Projects Side-by-Side with an Additional Activities Page

One of the biggest changes to the program is the ability to view projects side by side. With a project open in P6, you’ll find a new option under the Projects menu: Additional Activities View. This option will open a second Activities screen that can be placed side-by-side with the original Activities screen. Both of these pages will display data for all open projects. Within each screen, you can use different layouts to display different project data. This allows you to see different views of the same project at one time.

Let’s say that I want to view my critical path and full schedule simultaneously. In one of the Activities windows, I can turn on a Critical filter to only view critical activities. In the other Activities window, I can use a standard layout that displays all activities. With this new feature, I can now have both of these project views on the screen at one time.

This also aids adjusting activity data. You can copy and paste or drag and drop activities from one screen to another. This can be useful if you need to move activities from the top WBS layer to the bottom. Instead of having to drag and drop down a long schedule, we can configure the page and drag and drop from one screen to another.

It’s important to note that both screens will show the same project. If you schedule the project, the activities on both screens will be affected. Additionally, you can’t print both Activities screens at once. Instead, you’ll want to select the screen you want to print before pressing Print.

Perform Quantitative Analysis using Check Schedule Report

Another useful addition to P6 22.12 is the Check Schedule Report tool.  You can find this tool under the Tools menu. Check Schedule Report will perform quantitative analysis on your open projects. The tool will analyze your project against common schedule analysis metrics – such as those listed in the DCMA 14 Point Assessment. When running this report, you can specify exactly which metrics to look for. You can also specify what target percentages your project should meet when checking. This report will check your project for things such as missing relationships and negative float.

Once run, the program will analyze the project and provide a score for each metric. Much like the Schedule Log, you can save this report as an external HTML. This report will give you a list of activities that have passed the target metric. You can use this data to identify and fix any issues within your current project schedule.

Specify Timeframes for Finish Date Filters

Another change added to P6 22.12 is the ability to specify timeframes for Finish Date fields in filters.

Since Primavera P6 20.4, filters with finish date fields would select the end of the time frame. For example, if you set the Finish Date to Current Day, the field would look for the end of the current day. In earlier versions of the program, this worked the opposite. Prior to P6 20.4, Finish Date fields in filters would select the beginning of the time frame.

With the release of 22.12, users can now choose whether to use the start or the end of the time frame while using filters. You can define this within Admin Preferences. Under the General tab, there’s an option to define the timeframe by the beginning of the period. If you leave this unchecked, the program will continue to use the end of the timeframe.

Arrange Order of Sort Fields

Albeit a small change, P6 22.12 introduced the ability to arrange the order of Sort fields. When creating a Sort order in the Group and Sort window, you can now move sort columns up or down to rearrange them. This allows you to adjust the primary Sort order as needed.

For example, let’s say I want to sort my activities by Start Date and then by Total Float. I could add both of these fields to the Sort window. The field at the top of the Sort window will take precedence over those below it – so my activities will sort by Start, and then Total Float.

Now, let’s say I want to sort my activities by Total Float, and then Start date. Instead of having to delete these values and re-add them in the correct order, I can instead move them. Using the Move Up or Move Down button, I can set my sort order as needed.

Enhancements to Adjusting Project Data

Primavera P6 22.12 has made many changes to the ways you can adjust project data. These enhancements make it easier to not only add data to the schedule, but also to keep this data organized.

Copy and Paste a Range of Cells for Resource Usage

When working with spreadsheets in P6, you can now copy and paste values from a range of cells. This will work for the Resource Usage Spreadsheet and the Resource Assignments page. On these pages, you can track the planned and actual units and costs for assigned resources. You can also assign units and costs on these pages using future bucket planning.

Copying a range of cells allows you to select and copy several cells within a spreadsheet row. You can also paste these values, and all copied cells will paste within the selected row. To copy a range of cells, select the cells, right-click and select Copy Range. Copy Range also has a keyboard shortcut of Shift+Ctrl+C. To paste the cells, either right-click and select Paste Range or press Shift+Ctrl+V.

It’s important to note that only the values within the cells will be copied and pasted. You can also copy and paste between cells that use different units of measure – and only the values will paste. The data can only be pasted into editable rows.

Additional Columns for Assigning Baselines

When assigning baselines to a project, P6 22.12 has made it easier to find the exact one you need. If you go to assign a baseline in the Assign Baselines window, a new selection window will open. You can right click within this window to add more columns to the table. Now, you can see a variety of data for your baselines – such as Date Added and Last Update Date. This information will help you determine which baseline you need to assign.

In previous versions of P6, you couldn’t see any of this additional information. Instead, you would only see the Baseline name and ID. Now, you can make a more informed decision on which baseline you’ll be assigning.

Earned Value Fields for Resource Assignments

For users interested in Earned Value analysis, P6 22.12 has introduced Earned Value fields for Resource assignments. In the Resources tab on the Activity Details section, you can now add Earned Value columns to the table. You can view these new fields by right clicking in the Resources tab and selecting Customize Resource Columns. Under Available options, there is now an Earned Value category. This category allows you to add the following columns to the table: Assignment % Complete, Budget at Completion Units, Budget at Completion, Estimate to Complete Units, Estimate to Complete, Earned Value Units, and Earned Value.

These fields will also be available on the Resource Assignments page. All Earned Value fields will work with the Earned Value calculations assigned to the WBS layer. Now, we can track whether our resources costs are matching the work they’ve performed.

Importing and Exporting Enhancements

Lastly, P6 22.12 added a variety of improvements to the importing and exporting process. These changes allow users greater control over project data when importing or exporting.

Exporting Projects as IPMDAR File Type

Note: This addition is only available in Primavera P6 connected to a PPM or SQLite database. This option will not be available while using SQL Server databases.

In P6 22.12, you can now export projects as an IPMDAR file format. In previous versions of P6, this option was only available in P6 EPPM – now, it’s available for P6 Professional as well.

IPMDAR stands for Integrated Program Management Data Analysis Report.  This is the project format required by the US Department of Defense.  For users who need to use this file type, this addition will save a lot of time.

More Options when Importing XML Data

Another minor change, but P6 22.12 allows you more options when importing in XML project files. When you import an XML file into P6, you will be able to pick and choose exactly what data to import into the database. For example, if your imported project uses a resource already in the database, you can choose whether to import that data in as a new resource. This is done through Import Templates. By default, the program will select the Default Import Template while importing. However, you can edit this template or create new templates as needed. The Default Import Template has the program keeping all existing data in the database if the XML file matches it.

P6 22.12 introduced minor changes to the import templates. Now, you have options for Resource Calendars and Responsible Managers – both of which were unavailable prior. Users can now choose whether to keep, insert, or update their Resource Calendars and Responsible Managers when importing.

Duplicate Import and Export Templates

As mentioned above, P6 allows you to create import and export templates. These templates determine what data from a project file is imported or exported with it. They also determine what to do with that data if it already exists in the database. You can create different templates for the different types of files you’re importing/exporting, including XER and XML.

In previous versions of P6, these templates could not be copied. This meant that if a user needed to make a minor change for a new template, they would have to create it from scratch. With the release of P6 22.12, users can now duplicate templates. This will save a lot of time when creating new templates.

You can duplicate import/export templates when importing or exporting a project. When you get to the Update Project Options screen, select the desired template and press Duplicate. A copy of the template will appear in the list and you can then modify it as needed.

Options for Adjusting OBS Assignments when Copying Projects

In P6 22.12, you can now choose what to do with OBS assignments when projects are moved among EPS layers. The OBS (Organizational Breakdown Structure) allows you to assign a responsible manager to projects and EPS layers. The OBS determines which users can access the project data. When you create a new project or a new EPS layer, you will be prompted to assign a responsible manager from the OBS. In this way, you can choose exactly who can open and work with the project.

In past versions of P6, the responsible manager assigned to the project would remain even if the project was moved to a new EPS layer. This could cause some confusion, as the EPS layer might have a different responsible manager. Project managers may assume that moving the project would adjust who could view the project – but this was not the case.

Now, users can determine how they want these OBS assignments handled. In the Assistance tab of the User Preferences, you can now choose what to do with the assigned responsible manager. You can choose to either retain the responsible manager for the project, or assign the responsible manager from the new EPS layer.

Where to Find Out What’s New in P6 22.12

This article covered the majority of the enhancements added to P6 22.12. If you want to find out more about this new release,  you can use the What’s New page. This is another new feature to the program. The What’s New page is available under the Help menu in P6.

This button takes you to the Oracle Primavera website. Here, you can select your current P6 version and the version you’re upgrading to for a full list of enhancements added between the two versions. For users unsure of which P6 version they need, this page will be a great resource.

What is your favorite new addition to Primavera P6 Professional 22.12? Feel free to leave a comment below!

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Lauren Hecker is a Primavera P6 Professional Instructor and teaches onsite and virtual Primavera P6 Fundamentals and Advanced courses. To see her next open enrollment course, please visit our P6 training page here. To schedule an onsite or custom course, please contact us!