Copying tables between projects in Microsoft Project can be a real time saver. After putting the effort into creating a project schedule table, e.g. an Earned Value Management (EVM) analysis table, you will want to save this table set up and copy it to other projects. Microsoft Project has a neat feature that makes this possible.
This article demonstrates how to create and save tables, and then share them between Microsoft Project schedules.
Copying tables between projects actually is not necessary for the Microsoft Project’s default settings. Microsoft Project is automatically set to copy new tables to the global template. This global template makes the table available to all projects. This is good! But you may find that your global template quickly becomes cluttered with tables that are rarely needed.
Let’s assume you do not want to copy all new tables to the global template. Since this is the case we need to update Microsoft Projects default settings. Select File | Options and Advanced in the Project Options dialog, Figure 1.
Uncheck ‘automatically add new view, tables, filters, and groups to the global’. Alright, with this new setting our global template remains uncluttered, but we now have to manually copy tables between projects. No problem. This can be done.
In Figure 2 we have our demonstration project schedule, including our detailed EVM table.
This schedule is saved as ‘Pier Pilings v6.mpp’. We want to save the EVM table in this schedule for use on other projects. Select the view tab, data ribbon group, tables drop down menu, and save fields as a new table, Figure 3.
In Figure 4 we create a unique name for our EVM table.
‘Table EVM’ now appears in the list of available tables for ‘Pier Pilings v6.mpp’, Figure 5.
Great! We now have captured our table layout in ‘Table EVM’.
Our goal is to copy this table to the target project manufacture-2.mpp. We proceed and switch to manufacture-2.mpp, Figure 6. Note the differing task table in Figure 6.
Select the view tab, data ribbon group, tables drop down menu, and more tables, Figure 7.
Note that Table EVM is not listed in the list of available tables for manufacture-2.mpp, Figure 8.
Select organizer in the more tables dialog, Figure 8. Observe that Table EVM does not appear in the global.mpt template, Figure 9.
Set the copy from file from global.mpt to ‘Pier Pilings v6.mpp’. Set the copy to file to manufacture-2.mpp. Highlight Table EVM in ‘Pier Pilings v6.mpp’ and copy it to manfacture-2.mpp, Figure 10.
In Figure 11 manufacture-2.mpp includes the Table EVM table.
Select close. Note that Table EVM now appears in the list of available tables for manufacture-2.mpp, Figure 12.
Select apply, Figure 12, and the EVM table appears in the target manufacture-2.mpp project, as per Figure 13.
It is good to be creative and customize your tables in Microsoft Project. Leverage your work by copying these unique tables to new projects. In addition to tables, it is possible to transfer views, filters, and reports between Microsoft Project schedules.
Yes, the default Microsoft Project settings are set to automatically copy new tables to the global.mpt file. We, however, recommend turning off this automated procedure, and manually copying tables between projects.