How to Create a Fiercely Awesome (and Helpful) Timeline in Microsoft Project

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How to Create a Fiercely Awesome (and Helpful) Timeline in Microsoft Project

Since the timeline feature was introduced with Project Professional 2010, Microsoft Project has made great strides in improving it – especially over the last three versions. In today’s post, I will outline the highlights and some of the more advanced features that people have been asking me about for years.

I will discuss how to:

  1. Label timelines
  2. Adjust the timescale of the timeline
  3. Create multiple timelines
  4. Alter fonts to make your timeline pop
  5. View the progress of tasks within your timeline

You’ll essentially learn how to take your timeline from this:

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To this:

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Microsoft Project Timeline Tips

The adjustments shown below are simple yet impactful. Just follow the steps and you will be on your way to brilliant, easy-to-read timelines.

1. Labeling Timelines

To label your timelines, use the new “Bar Label” button in the format ribbon of your timeline. You can name each timeline individually.

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2. Adjusting the Timescale of the Timeline

To adjust the timescale labels, click on the “Start” or “Finish” date on your timeline, and then click “Date Range” in the format ribbon.

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Using the “Set Timeline Dates” dialogue, establish custom dates for your timeline.

Note: I personally set different dates for my second timeline. 

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3. Creating Multiple Timelines

To add an additional timeline into your project schedule, use the “Add Timeline Bar” button in the format ribbon of the timeline.

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4. Adjusting Fonts to Make Your Timeline Pop

I’m a huge fan of text styles within Microsoft Project, so I like to customize the various text fields within a timeline. To do this, click on the “Text Styles” button in the format ribbon of the timeline. You can then change the font, color, and size of various objects within your timeline.

Note: I adjusted the Milestone Names and Bar Labels.

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5. Viewing the Progress of Tasks Within Your Timeline

To view the progress of tasks within your timeline, all you need to do is upgrade to the latest version of Project Professional for Office 365. This feature was released within the last few months.

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I hope these five tips have transformed the way you look at timelines! Stay tuned for more Microsoft Project and Project Server insights from Tom’s Tech Talk.

Cheers!

Stay tuned for more helpful Microsoft Project Server and Microsoft Project Online tips and advice on Tom’s Tech Talk.


Projility provides expert solutions for effective change. We offer enterprise portfolio and project management solutions based on Microsoft Project Server and Project Online, with tailored dashboard reporting, analytics, and decision-making tools via our Hammerhead technology. Projility also implements professional services automation systems established on Microsoft Dynamics CRM Project Service, and presents cloud-based strategies, migrations, and hosting solutions through Microsoft Azure. Contact us for more information.

By |2018-06-06T11:18:58+00:00October 11th, 2017|Microsoft Project Tips, Tom's Tech Talk|

About the Author:

Tom Henry
Tom Henry is the PPM Practice Manager at Projility. He leads a team of experienced PPM consultants in making clients more adept, productive, and profitable. Tom has been involved with project and portfolio management since graduating from Bournemouth University in the UK, working first in London and then moving to the US to further pursue his career. Tom prides himself on being able to understand his clients’ needs and translating those needs into simplified PPM solutions.

About Projility

PROJILITY is a Microsoft PPM and CRM services leader and product innovator. Our Hammerhead products have helped organizations around the world save hundreds of thousands on Microsoft Project Server training, customization, and support costs.

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