Gantt Chart Software Buyers Guide
Last updated: September 24, 2023
Gantt Charts are well known among project managers, offering numerous advantages for project management and providing tools to make critical decision-making easier. Project tasks, typically, are interdependent and can last several weeks, months, or even years. Some cannot be started until the backlog has been sufficiently cleared – the point where Gantt Charts offer a systematic solution for moving things forward.
So... What is a Gantt Chart?
A Gantt chart is a horizontal bar chart that displays the start date, progress, and duration of each task in a given project. It lets project managers quickly see how a project is progressing – down to the state of its minutiae.
Gantt Chart Software
Gantt chart software, as established, can assist in tracking and managing project tasks. The most effective Gantt chart solutions are user-friendly, allowing you to effortlessly enter projects and create tasks. As project requirements and deadlines change, you can modify tasks to keep the project on track.
The Gantt Chart Origin Story
Despite being named after Henry Gantt, an American engineer and project management consultant, he was not the first to develop the concept. Karol Adamiecki, a Polish engineer working in the 1890s,. He designed it for his steel unit, but Henry Gantt adapted it to the needs of his clients. Gantt charts are the most commonly used for project scheduling and control nowadays.
Gantt Chart Features
A Gantt chart provides project managers with a quick view of project information, such as:
- The project’s scheduled start date
- What are the project's objectives?
- Which team member is in charge of each task?
- The completion rate of each activity
- Task interdependence
- Project phases and milestones
- The critical path of the project
- The completion date of the project
What are the Benefits of Utilizing Gantt Charts?
Many people are used to creating task lists in Excel or other spreadsheet applications. A Gantt Chart simplifies this execution, making for a more instantaneous ‘snapshot view’ of running tasks arranged in listicle format.
When you need to share your project timeline with other team members, creating a Gantt Chart online makes the process more convenient. When someone changes their completion percentage, adds a comment, or attaches a file to a task, it is updated in real-time. You can also drag and drop project tasks as a project manager to make instant changes to the project schedule.
How Gantt Charts Can Assist You with Various Projects?
Social Media Campaigns
Using Gantt Charts for social media marketing campaigns will help you to remember the tools you'll need, the content you'll be posting, and the assets you'll be using on each channel.
Project management is one of the most prominent verticals to make liberal usages of Gantt Charts. These reports help project managers figure out what tasks are part of each project, make a schedule for each task, and give dates, tools, and updates on the status of each task.
There are several tools available to marketers to help them create Gantt charts for their promotional initiatives. There are also campaign templates that include monitoring for specific tasks, subtasks, and milestones.
A product launch consists of numerous components. You can keep track of research, finances, team responsibilities, and even risk assessment by using a personalized Gantt Chart. Further, you can even create dependencies and assign tasks to specific people.
An event requires a high level of coordination from the pre-event marketing to post-event stages. A Gantt chart can help you keep track of your plan, team progress, and important actions before, during, and after your scheduled event.
How to Make a Gantt Chart
List the activities that must be completed on the vertical axis and a timeline on the horizontal axis to create a Gantt chart. As you enter tasks, their start dates, finish dates, and dependencies, the stacked chart bars that show task durations will populate. This occurs when you use a project management application integrated with a Gantt Chart builder.
You can quickly set up a work breakdown structure, assign tasks to team members, track project progress in real time, and change your project schedule by dragging and dropping time frames with Gantt Chart software.
Gantt charts can be created in a variety of programs/suites, including Google Docs and Microsoft Office.
Gantt Chart in Microsoft Word
Make an interactive Gantt chart with the ‘stacking bars’ feature to show how work is progressing and keep track of what you've accomplished.
Create a daily check-in schedule on your chart as well, so you can move the ‘Today’ line forward as the day progresses, allowing you to stay on track and keep check on what’s coming.
Gantt Chart in Google Docs
Use Google Docs' timeline template documents to equip yourself with an overview of your project's progress. This will help you visualize, stay on track, and track your progress over time so you can share information with key internal and external stakeholders.
Gantt Chart: Collaborative Features
You can begin improving work management in a variety of ways after inviting your team members to the new Gantt Chart tool. You can organize a group call right on the Gantt Chart view to collaborate on the project plan. You can also pre-populate the Gantt with the task list using a simple import tool or by cutting and pasting the list. This way, when your team calls, the tasks and assignments are already there.
In real time, you can assign or reassign tasks to team members based on their availability. When jobs are assigned to people on the Gantt chart, their names appear above the taskbar.
When your team works together on an online Gantt Chart creator, you can do so much more than schedule tasks. At the task level, you can include photographs, videos, links, notes, or comments. The chart collects and organizes all relevant task details in one location.
You can customize your Gantt Charts with whatever you think is appropriate for your team. On the Gantt task bars, different users are represented by different colors. At a glance, it is simple to determine who is responsible for which tasks. Other people can use colors to show different stages of a project or different teams in charge of a group of tasks on a stacked bar chart.
Your team can customize email alerts to meet their specific requirements. So, if their tasks are changed anywhere in the system, like on the Gantt diagram or somewhere else, your team will be notified right away.
Is There Any Exclusive Gantt Chart Software?
Yes, there are various Gantt Chart software available on the market today.
Project managers discovered that using computers to create and update Gantt Charts saved them a lot of time. Gantt chart software automates the process of meeting more complex Gantt criteria. It is also known, interchangeably, as ‘project planning’, ‘project management’, or ‘project scheduling’ software. It can show how tasks depend on each other, enable milestones addition, and allow for the discovery of a project plan's critical path.
Online Gantt vs. Offline Gantt
Project management software has changed the way teams work together. A desktop/offline Gantt chart creator is ideal for a single manager who prefers to plan projects independently and does not require the project plan to be easily shared with team members or stakeholders. Like Microsoft Excel or Word, the offline Gantt chart generator gives each user a copy of the chart to keep on their own computer.
Transferring large Gantt or plan file sizes becomes difficult without the business integration of a file-sharing hub like Microsoft SharePoint. Even with SharePoint, if more users want to share the file, they will need a desktop license for the project management software, which may raise the subscription cost.
Online project management software, such as Gantt chart software, facilitates project sharing and collaboration. Because it is entirely web-based, anyone who requests to join can view the project plan. They can also update their tasks in real time and attach files directly to the tasks they're working on. Online project management software is also significantly cheaper than desktop versions. Costly server installations, integrations, or license fees for each user are not needed.
How Can Gantt Charts Assist You with Collaborations?
The project working time is taken into account when calculating its planned length and required resource effort, as well as the total start and end times.
Working time data is retrieved by the Gantt Chart software from the resource working hours that you specify. This allows you to adjust each team member's available working hours, which is useful if you have people who cannot devote the full 8-hour-day to your project. You can also change everyone's work hours if you're closing the office for a staff event or want to make sure no one works on a bank holiday.
How Gantt Charts Columns Can Help You?
Gantt Charts columns can help you in the following ways:
When you use row hierarchies, the child rows appear in the Gantt chart as separate task bars based on their start and end dates. When dependencies are turned on in the sheet, the parent rows give a summary of the rows for which they are responsible.
To track progress, you can set milestones for tasks and projects of any size. This allows you to define each goal that must be met, which helps to keep your project on track.
This is typically a single integer value representing the number of days between the project’s expected start and end dates. It is calculated in terms of working days, so if a task is expected to take a week, the project schedule will show 5 (working) days.
The tasks on your Gantt chart are linked. For example, after submitting the final draft, the creator will be able to edit their work. Gantt charts dependencies and allows you to manage any record.
Who Uses Gantt Charts?
A Gantt chart can now be used by almost anyone to help them visualize their work. Because project management software takes care of all of the tedious illustrative ‘nitties’, anyone can simply create a basic task list, enter start and finish dates, and the program will automatically display the tasks on an illustrated project timeline.
Gantt Charts are generally employed by:
- General Managers
- Team Leaders
- Work Managers
- Event Planners
- Healthcare Workers
The Top 5 Gantt Chart Project Management Software Applications
Monday.com won the Webby 2020 award and its flexibility allows you to customize Gantt chart templates to track project progress, plan work, and even set up task dependencies to keep project delays to a minimum.
ClickUp has been named in the Forbes Cloud 100 list for 2022. It has lovely Gantt Chart representations that make it easier to keep track of each project's visual schedule, which is especially useful for team-planned projects with interdependent activities.
Asana is the winner of G2's Enterprise Grid 2021. It is a work management app with advanced features like custom fields, a mode for people who are colorblind, and proofreading.
The Airtable software was nominated for a Webby Award in 2020, and it provides a Gantt view for Airtable Pro and Enterprise customers. It enables you to see every aspect of your project within the application interface.
Notion has been named a 2021 North American Customer Value Leadership Award winner. It allows you to create flexible views to which you can attach activities to create a series of tasks that will show you how long it will take to complete various projects.