Today we’ll be talking a little bit about the primary views of ProjectManager.com. Users can choose between a list view, a kanban board view and a Gantt chart view. Let’s take a look starting at the list view. The task list is an easy-to-use way to manage project tasks for anyone on your team, and is an excellent complement to the board and Gantt.
To begin building your project in a task list, begin entering tasks and press enter after each task, or click the add new task icon at the bottom of the list or at the global add to quickly add tasks as you go. When you use the global add, make sure you assign your task to a project. In the detail panel on the right, you can assign the task to team members, define priority, adjust due dates and progress, and add files as well as add comments so you can collaborate easily with the rest of the team.
For even more functionality, expanding the task panel will allow you to create a to-do list, edit start date and modify hours estimate and actuals. From this view you can also see which board column or custom Gantt column a task belongs to. Back in the list view, tasks can be prioritized by dragging and dropping, or you can search, or filter by priority, assignee and more in the filter menu. You can also turn on and off columns with the view icon at the top of the list.
Now that you’ve learned how to use the task view, jump in and build out your task list to manage your work online, or check out the features of our kanban board view.
The board view features a drag-and-drop kanban board to visualize the steps in your workflow, or to group your tasks by categories. When you create tasks in the board, they are also added to the list and the Gantt views, so you can manage your project in multiple ways.
To begin building your project using the board, enter tasks in any column by name and press enter to create a new card. We have auto-populated columns called To Do, Doing and Done, but these columns can be renamed to categorize your project any way you’d like. To view the details of any task, click anywhere on the card to open the task detail view. In this panel, each task can be assigned to team members, given a description, assigned a priority and given a due date.
Supporting files can also be attached to each task and comments can be included for greater collaboration across your teams. For even more functionality, expanding the task panel will allow you to create a to-do list, edit start date and modify hours estimate and actuals. Also from this view you can see which board column or custom Gantt column the task belongs to. On the board, tasks can be rearranged within a column or moved from one column to another by dragging and dropping. Task cards can also be filtered by progress, assignee, due date and more. Tasks can be given a progress between Not Started and Done using the detail panel or marked complete in the main panel.
Tasks can be given a progress between Not Started and Done using the detail panel or marked complete in the main panel.
So that’s an overview of the board view. For our last view, we’re going to dive into the Gantt chart view.
If your project is bound to specific dates and deadlines, Gantt charts may be the best tool to build out your project. Gantt charts are an incredibly powerful project planning tool which allow you to schedule your tasks in a waterfall timeline, as well as plan task and resource costs and assign team members. When properly used, the Gantt tools will help you monitor your projects to make it easier to deliver on time and within budget.
The main workspace is split between the data grid, on the left side of the page, and the Gantt chart, on the right side of the page. Above these, you’ll notice a ribbon of tools to help build your project plan. Often it can be helpful to plan your tasks in phases. Start by entering the name of your phase into the data grid. For now, let’s not worry about formatting – we’ll take care of all that in a minute. Next, add task names in the data grid. After each item, simply press Enter to move to the next item. After entering your last task, create a milestone, typically the completion of a phase.
To identify the entry as a milestone, highlight the line and click the diamond icon in the ribbon. Next, you’ll want to highlight all the tasks and the milestone of each phase, and click the indent button. This now changes our phase name into a summary task, with the other tasks becoming sub-tasks underneath it. Now, to edit duration of tasks, simply click in the duration column and type the appropriate number of days for each task. To edit planned start or finish dates, click the date cell and either manually type the correct date or choose the calendar icon and select a date.
Next we will create simple dependencies by highlighting the tasks and milestone in your project and then clicking the link button. Now all of our tasks appear in a waterfall timeline, which means that one task must complete before the next can begin. Lastly, let’s color-code all of our tasks. Highlight the rows, then select the paint bucket icon to change the color of our tasks. This can be helpful for a multi-phase project. And it looks pretty.
As you can see, ProjectManager.com gives your team the options to work in a way that best suits you. To learn more about the software’s features, check out the remainder of our ProjectManager.com 101 academy course. You can also try ProjectManager.com for free when you’re ready, by signing up for a free 30-day trial.