Microsoft Project 2003 Features Better Office Integration

This week, Microsoft unveiled Microsoft Office Project 2003, the most recent version of the company's project-management family of products. Project 2003, due late this summer with the other applications in the Microsoft Office System, includes Project Standard 2003 and Project Professional 2003 for standalone desktop application use and the server-side Project Web Access and Project Server products. In addition, Microsoft will offer a package called the Microsoft Office Enterprise Project Management (EPM) Solution, which includes Project Professional 2003, Project Web Access 2003, and Project Server 2003.

"Customers are excited about the significant increases in visibility and resource utilization as well as the decreases in time to market they've realized from adopting Project in their organizations, and they've suggested some additional features to address their specific needs," said Chris Capossela, general manager of the Project Business Unit. "The Microsoft Office Enterprise Project Management Solution incorporates those suggestions into the Microsoft Office System to create a solution that brings enterprise project management to more people. We expect these changes to spur greater adoption of project management across companies and increase our customers' productivity and efficiency."

In a Project briefing this week, Capossela highlighted the product's extensive integration with other Office products, including Microsoft Outlook and Windows SharePoint Services. For example, Project tasks now show up in the Outlook calendar, so users don't need to use a Web browser to view or modify them. Double-clicking on a Project item in Outlook brings up a standard Outlook form with a third tab called Project; using this tab, users can report on progress and update the server. Project users can also choose to transfer Project information to other Office applications, including Microsoft Excel, PowerPoint, and Visio.

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