Wouldn't it be so much easier if you could simply show clients, partners, and colleagues an up-to-date project timeline instead of manually preparing reports? Well, great news: now you can! Today we released the Timeline Snapshot. You can take a picture of your project plans on the Timeline and instantly share it with anyone via a public link — even with people who don't have a Wrike account. (Though it might also be a good time to invite them to Wrike.) Timeline Snapshots make your communications more efficient. By sending your colleagues a photo of your workload and project plans, they get an instant look at work progress and you save time explaining and generating reports, with an automatic look into the high visibility project meaning. It will be especially useful for agencies and B2B freelancers who need to share project estimates with clients and partners, or executives who report on progress to investors. Nonprofits will find it useful for sharing milestones and project roadmaps with their board, or even sending this snapshot out to donors via newsletter. Local governments and municipalities can easily share project plans with constituents. Ditto for managers who need to share Gantt charts with other departments that don't use Wrike. As always, you can share your data in an easy and secure way. Whenever someone creates a new Timeline Snapshot, you'll see a corresponding entry in the Activity Stream. Anytime you can delete any of the snapshots as some of them get outdated. If there's anything we've learned from Instagram, it's that sometimes it's easier to convey a whole lot of information in a single picture — even if it is a Gantt chart selfie.
Visual project timelines are a manager’s best friend. Providing an easy way to report big-picture progress to executives and stakeholders can be a lifesaver when managing large projects. At the same time, when you're managing a project and need to drill down into the details of milestones and dependencies, it's easy to see how the project stands and pinpoint any tasks and deadlines in danger of slipping. Because Gantt chart-style project timelines are such a popular planning and management tool, dozens of project management apps are available to create them, including Excel, Microsoft Project, and Wrike. Here, we’ll show you how to make a timeline in MS Project, along with an easier way to do so with Wrike. How to create a timeline using Microsoft Project Step 1: To make a Microsoft Project Gantt chart, click "View," then choose "Timeline." Step 2: Right-click any of your tasks, then select "Add to Timeline." Repeat for every task or milestone connected to your project. Step 3: If you’d like to create multiple timelines, click the Timeline view, then "Format." Select "Timeline Bar" from the Format menu. Step 4: Right-click a timeline and choose "Date Range." Set your start and finish dates. Step 5: Add colors and change text styles by clicking anywhere on your timeline and selecting "Format." Step 6: To share your MS Project timeline, click the Format menu and select "Copy Timeline." Choose a size, depending on your needs: for emails, choose small; for presentation slides, choose medium; and for full size, choose large. You can then paste the timeline into another program as an image. An easier way to create a timeline online Instead of manually adding tasks and milestones to your project timeline, use an online Gantt chart. Wrike’s Gantt charts let you easily plan your projects. Wrike automatically pulls your project tasks and due dates to create a dynamic project timeline for you. Assign due dates, set milestones and dependencies with a simple right-click, and adjust the timeline by dragging and dropping tasks and durations. Overdue tasks are automatically flagged in red, so nothing escapes your attention. Online project timelines are also much easier to share, and you don’t need to bother with selecting the right size for PowerPoint slides or emails. With Wrike, you can quickly share your timeline with colleagues by taking a snapshot and sending the link to clients and stakeholders so they can get progress updates quickly and easily. Get a free trial of Wrike and try it out for yourself, with nothing to download or install. Then check out our in-depth guide to the Wrike's Gantt charts to create your first timeline and get your project up and running in minutes. How have project timelines helped you meet important deadlines? Share your success story in the comments. Sources: support.office.com, youtube.com, advisicon.com, wikipedia.org, techrepublic.com
Visual timelines are essential tools for planning, tracking, and managing a project. You can map out dependencies and milestones to get an accurate overview of progress and deadlines, and create a reusable version, such as an event timeline template, to steer your future projects too. But while using these Gantt chart-style timelines for project management is fairly easy, creating one in Excel can be tricky. We'll walk you through the process of how to make a timeline in Excel and share a project schedule template you can reuse for future work. How to Create a Timeline in Excel Step 1: Start by creating a table List each task in your project from beginning to end, including key decisions and deliverables, and set a start date, end date, and duration for each one. Next, turn your table into a bar chart. Select Insert, then click the Bar Chart icon and choose the 2-D stacked bar chart. Step 2: Add Start Dates Right click your empty bar chart, then choose Select Data. When the Data Source window appears, click Add under Legend Entries (Series). The Edit Series window will appear. Click in the empty “Series name:“ field, then click on the Start Date cell of the table you created in step 1. Finally, click on the spreadsheet icon to the right of the “Series values:” field to open the Edit Series window. Click on the first Start Date in your table, then drag your mouse down to the last Start Date to highlight all your task start dates. Click on the spreadsheet icon at the end of the Edit Series form. The previous window will appear; select ‘Ok.” Step 3: Add Durations Follow the same process with your Durations column: click Add under Legend Entries (Series). Select the empty “Series: name” field, then click the first Duration cell in your table. Click the spreadsheet icon next to the Series values field to open the Edit Series window. Select the first duration in your table, and drag your mouse down to the last duration to select all your duration entries. Click the spreadsheet icon to the right of the Edit Series form, then select Ok to add durations to your Excel timeline. Step 4: Add Task Names Right click on any bar in your chart and choose Select Data. Click the spreadsheet icon to the right of Category (X) Axis Labels, then click and drag to highlight the names of your tasks in your table. Do not select the name of the column (Task), only the task names themselves. Then click ok, and ok again. Step 5: Format Your Gantt Chart You now have a stacked bar chart indicating the starting dates of your tasks and their durations—but your tasks are in reverse order. Right click your list of tasks and select Format Axis. Select the ‘Categories in reverse order’ checkbox. To hide the blue part of each bar, right click on the blue part of any bar and choose Format Data Series. Click Fill, then select No fill. Then click Border Color and select No line, and finally Shadow and unclick the Shadow box. Then delete the unnecessary bar chart key to create more space. To get rid of the white space at the beginning of your Gantt chart, right click on the first Start Date in your data table and choose Format Cells. Under General, write down the number listed. Hit Cancel. Back in your Gantt chart, right click on the dates above the bars and choose Format Axis. Change the Minimum bound to the number you’ve written down. Select close. If you want to get rid of the white space between the bars, right click on the top red bar and select Format Data Series. Set Separated to 100% and Gap Width to 10%. Congratulations! You’ve created a project timeline in Excel. Download a Free Excel Timeline Template Instead of creating your own project timeline template in Excel, download one that's ready made. Track deadlines and project status for all kinds of projects, from software development to online marketing campaigns, with this free timeline template download from Microsoft Office. An Easier Way to Create Project Timelines As you can see, it’s time consuming and tedious to create project timelines in Excel. Plus, whenever a deadline changes or new tasks need to be added, it’s difficult to manually update your Excel chart. Instead of messing with spreadsheets and table formatting, use an online Gantt chart. Wrike’s Timeline feature lets you easily plan your projects, set due dates, milestones and dependencies, and adjust to changes by dragging and dropping tasks and durations. You can also share your timeline with colleagues, or take a snapshot and send the link to clients and stakeholders so they can get progress updates quickly and easily. Get a free trial of Wrike and try it out for yourself, with nothing to download or install.
While redesigning Wrike project management software, we paid a special attention to the favorite project management feature for many of you – the interactive timeline. Switch to the Gantt chart view right now, and you won't believe your eyes: regardless of the number of tasks in your projects, the timeline loads in a flash. The ease and speed of navigating the chart is really breathtaking. Scroll down the chart, zoom it in and out, move across the tasks – everything with your mouse. Handy filters allow you to specify the type of tasks you want to see on the chart. Pay special attention to the farthest right button on the control panel at the top of the chart. It is a brand-new preview feature that will certainly capture your imagination. Just click the button, and a small panel will show you a mini-picture of the whole timeline. The red square marks the part of the chart that you see on the screen at the moment. Drag it to quickly jump to another project or a month ahead. Isn't it just amazing? The second function of the control panel is to give you an easy way to zoom the chart in or out. Just drag the slider and see how the scale changes. You also can easily zoom your chart in and out by holding the SHIFT button and using the scroll bar on your mouse. To create a task right on the Gantt chart, hold the SHIFT key and the left mouse button, then pull your mouse to the right. Take a look at the Gantt chart right now and tell us, isn't it just great?
If you have ever dealt with project management software, you know Gantt charts can be helpful. But most likely you are stuck with your e-mail to manage your projects and you want to build charts based on the tasks that your e-mails contain without much hassle. We’ve got something for you. Use a timeline option in Wrike project management solution. You work with your sales leads, customer service requests or Web site development tasks. Wrike helps you keep track of them. At any time you can switch to the Timeline view and get excellent support for your time management. A timeline visualizes a project schedule perfectly. It helps you quickly understand how your projects are going and what requires your particular attention. You can easily build plans and keep track of progress. You can update your plans in accordance with your business goals and time frames. Devote time to prepare a presentation and simultaneously quote potential customers who send you RFPs. Then schedule participation in an exhibition and follow-up with the received leads. Sign contracts and take a long breath on vacation finally. If you update shared plans, change dates or delegate tasks, everyone on the team is informed about it on the same basis as when they work with the Task List view. So add the due date [in square brackets] into the subject of your e-mails and [email protected] into the CC field and Wrike will build a Gantt chart for you:
We have developed a Timeline, which is mostly known as a Gantt Chart. Now you can: - have the big picture of parallel projects, - track the work load of your team members, and - create elegantly designed outlines of plans. All these tasks are a huge challenge when using other online project management and collaboration tools, aren’t they? Here is a short demo for you. Some technical details. The red flag marks the due date, and the floating bar chart represents the task duration. So you can easily drag a bar and thus change the start date of a task. To change the task duration, you only need to pull the bar’s borders. The red flag - the due date – keeps you from accidentally overstepping the deadline and doesn’t allow the bar chart to move outside of it.
Sticking to your project timeline is easy if everything goes according to plan. But when’s the last time that happened? Let’s cover some common mistakes that project managers make when scheduling their project plan timelines and how you can fix them.