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Gantt view (module: Timeline)

Basics for working with the Gantt View

The Gantt view is a bar chart, often used in project management, that shows all tasks in their chronological order and according to their dependency on other tasks.

Stackfield Timelines
The chart will help you to order your tasks in accordance to their dependency on other tasks.

The vertical axis of the diagram shows all tasks (or events or project units). The horizontal axis shows the chronological course. Within this view, you will find all tasks in form of bars (in various lengths according to their duration) and ordered by due date - i.e. the chart puts all tasks "into the right order". Dependency arrows indicate that certain tasks are dependent on the completion of other tasks.

This way, the view facilitates scheduling and allows you to determine the total duration of a project. You can see exactly whether delays in the processing of individual tasks will also cause delays in dependent tasks, thus ultimately affecting the overall duration of the project. However, you will be able to adjust and optimize the project plan accordingly.

In a nutshell: What does the view consist of?

  • Task list: All tasks can be listet alongside the vertical axis on the left side of the view.
  • Timeline: The timeline runs along the horizontal axis at the top of the view. It shows the currently illustrated time-frame of the project.
  • Task bar: They represent the individual tasks and, depending on their length, they also indicate the processing time of the tasks.
  • Milestones: Important events or intermediate steps will be accentuated. They are generally dispayed as a diamond instead of a bar.
  • Dependencies: Arrows connecting the tasks/process steps prescribe a certain order for them.
  • Dateline: It shows the current time and runs vertically within the diagram.

The Gantt view helps you to...

  • keep an eye on the progress of the project,
  • identify potential bottlenecks,
  • to optimize the project structure and scheduling of the project
  • identify delays in the course of the project at an early stage and
  • keep all parties involved up to date.

In a nutshell: What can you read from the view?

  • Total project duration ( can be read from the start of the first and end of the last task): When does the project start? When is the project expected to be completed?
  • Task or process segment duration (can be read from the bar length): When does the project start? When should tasks or process sections be completed?
  • Project status (indicated by the bar color): At what point is the project at the moment? Is everything working out as planned?
  • Responsibilities (indicated in the task list and from the profile picture within the bars): To whom were individual tasks assigned?
  • Dependencies (indicated by arrows connecting individual tasks): Are there any tasks that can only be processed once other tasks have been completed or are being processed?
  • Milestones (indicated by a diamond symbol): Are there important intermediate results or deadlines?

Activating the Gantt view + preconditions

  1. Make sure that the Tasks module is active for the room you want to use the Gantt view in.*
  2. Open the room settings (for example, by clicking on the room name).
  3. Switch to the Modules tab.
  4. Activate the module Timelines.
Acticated modules
Activated modules to use the timelines

*Preconditions: Since the Gantt view is a project view for task planning, you can only activate it if the task module is also active. Furthermore, tasks only appear in the Gantt view once they have been assigned a due date or period.

How to succeed in project planning by using the Gantt view

To be able to plan the project in the best possible way, you should proceed step by step and create a detailed project plan.

  1. Create a catalog of requirements with all tasks that need to be done to complete the project.
  2. Prioritize the tasks.
  3. Define important milestones.
  4. Determine the task duration and set due dates.
  5. Create dependencies between the tasks.
  6. Keep an eye on the progress of the project.

Record and prioritize requirements

To get the most out of the Gantt view, you should create the requirements catalog as detailed as possible. Carefully evaluate what requirements have to be met and keep in mind that any requirements that are added to the project later will affect the entire project.

  1. Create a task for each requirement. Tasks can be created in different places: In the Timelines, Tasks, Communication or Calendar module. We recommend to use the Kanban Board in the moduleTasks.
  2. Use Labels. For a better overview, you may want to divide the project into individual phases or even into sprints. You can use Labels to assign individual tasks to a specific phase. This makes it easier for you to prioritize the tasks afterwards.
  3. Prioritize. Put all requirements in the right order. The most convenient way to organize tasks is via the Kanban Board, where you can move tasks up or down using drag & drop, if the filter "Custom" is activated. If you have divided the tasks into phases, you will find this task particularly easy.
Prioritize
Drag & drop tasks into the right chronological order.

Working with Milestones

You can mark important intermediate dates or goals as milestones in Stackfield. Milestones are accentuated task cards, represented as diamonds within the diagram.

You have two options for creating milestones:

Add a new milestone

New milestone
Adding a new milestone within the Timelines module
  1. Click on the plus icon in the module Timelines.
  2. Choose the Option „Add Milestone“.

Convert an existing task into a milestone within the view

Convert within the view
Converting a task into a milestone.
  1. Right-click on the respective task.
  2. Select "Set as Milestone".

Convert an existing task into a milestone

Convert within the task
Converting a task into a milestone
  1. Open the respective task.
  2. Click on the more button (symbol: three dots) in the upper right corner of the task.
  3. Select "Set as Milestone".

Remove milestone status within the view

Remove milestone status within the chart
Right-click to remove the milestone status.
  1. Right-click on the milestone.
  2. Deselect the option "Set as Milestone".

Remove milestone status within the task

Remove milestone status within the task
Deselect the milestone status within the task.
  1. Open the respective task.
  2. Click on the more button (symbol: three dots).
  3. Deselect the option "Set as Milestone".

Scheduling tasks

Having an overview regarding the exact order of processing tasks (and milestones), you can start scheduling. To do this, it is important to have a good understanding of how much time it will take to complete the individual tasks.

Note: Tasks do not appear in the chart until they have been assigned a due date. You can find out how to date unscheduled tasks (which is especially relevant when initially creating the Gantt) will be explained in the next section.

Using the module makes it even easier to set due dates for the individual elements. There they can be moved to their due date or period simply by drag & drop. Similarly, you can adjust the duration of the tasks by stretching or shortening the individual task bars.

Schedule
You can schedule tasks and change their duration simply by using drag & drop.

Where to find tasks without due date

Within the Timelines view you will only see those Tasks with a due date.

The calendar icon in the upper part of the view can be used to display unscheduled tasks - those for which no due date has been entered yet. By clicking on "Add" right next to the task, it will be added to the Gantt view. There, like all other tasks, you can use drag & drop to move it to the right spot and to adjust its duration.

Add unscheduled tasks
You can add unscheduled tasks via the calendar icon at the top of the view.

Working with dependencies

Task dependencies serve as a link between individual tasks. They are meant to ensure that all team members are aware of interrelationships and to indicate the impact of changes to the schedule.

If a task is delayed, which other tasks are dependent on, these tasks will also be delayed.

Creating dependencies via drag & drop in the module Timelines

Dependency within the chart
Creating dependencies via drag & drop
  1. Open the module Timelines.
  2. Drag the dependency link from a link point of the predecessor task to the link point of the successor task. (link points appear as you mouse-over a task)

For better understanding: The task from which the dependency arrow leads away is the predecessor task, i.e. this one must be completed first. The task to which the arrow leads is the successor task.

Creating dependencies within the task cards

Dependency within the task
Creating dependencies within the task
  1. Open the respective task.
  2. Click on the more button (symbol: three dots) in the top right corner of the task Click on "Add dependency".
  3. Select the respective predecessor task via the search mask.

For better understanding: The task you selected via the search mask must be completed first. This is the predecessor task. The opened task is its successor.

Viewing dependencies

You can see what tasks a certain task depends on directly from the diagram within the Timelines module.

In addition, you can see all dependencies in the header area of each successor task.

View dependencies
All dependencies are listed within the task cards

Removing dependencies in the module Timelines

You can either remove single dependencies or (if there are several dependencies) collectively remove all dependencies of a successor task to its predecessor tasks.

Removing a single dependency

Remove single dependency
Removing a single dependency within the Gantt view
  1. Right-click on the dependency you want to delete.
  2. Click on "Delete dependency".

Removing all dependencies for one task at once

Remove all dependencies within the view
Removing all dependencies for one task.
  1. Right-click on the respective successor task.
  2. Click on "Delete all dependencies".

Removing dependencies in the task card

Also, within the opened successor task you have the option to either remove single dependencies to other tasks or all existing dependencies collectively.

Removing a single dependency

Removing a single dependency in the task
Removing a single dependency (within the task)

Option 1:

  1. Open the respective successor task. All dependencies are listed in the header of the task card.
  2. Click on "Remove dependency" right next to the dependency you want to remove.

Option 2:

  1. Open the respective successor task.
  2. Click on the more button (symbol: three dots) in the task map.
  3. Select "Change dependencies". Existing dependencies to other tasks are highlighted in blue in the list.
  4. Deselect unwanted dependencies with a single click.

Removing all dependencies for one task at once

Removing all dependencies in the task
Removing all dependencies (within the task)
  1. Open the respective successor task.
  2. Click on the more button (symbol: three dots) within the task card.
  3. Select "Change dependency".
  4. Double-click the option "No dependency".
  5. Click on "Save dependency" to confirm your selection.

Completing tasks with dependencies

Of course, during the course of the project, all tasks should be completed according to the predefined sequence and with regard to their dependencies. For this reason, users receive a warning if they try to complete successor tasks before their predecessor tasks.

Customizing and filtering the Gantt view

The final version provides evidence on the total duration of the project. The more extensive the project, the wider the view. For this reason some functions help to keep the view as clear as possible.

Changing the time units of the displayed time frame

Time units
Change to weekly, monthly or yearly view.

With a click on the corresponding button in the head of the view, you can switch between weekly, monthly or yearly view.

Note: Due to the compressed view, you will be asked to confirm your choice when moving tasks within the monthly or yearly view. This prevents accidental moving of elements to the wrong spot.

Adjusting the displayed time frame

Using the scroll bars at the bottom and right end of the view, you can maneuver it to a specific project phase. The start and end dates still determine the respective limits of the project preview, i.e. moving the view to the left or right is only possible down to the first or up to the last element in the view.

Using filter options

Open the filter options by clicking the "filter" button at the top of the view.

Filter options
Open the filter option by clicking on the respective button at the top of the view.

The task list on the left vertical axis provides the most important key data for the respective tasks. This includes the task name, the start and end date and the duration. Under "Timeline Columns" in the upper area of the filter options, you can switch off the task list. Switching it on again works in the exact same way. Under "Columns" right underneath you can limit or expand the key data displayed within the task list.

Filter task list
Adjusting the task list

Below, you will find options that affect the arrangement of the tasks within the view. You can group tasks by status and sort them according to the key data.

Group and sort view
Change how tasks will be arranged by sorting and grouping them.

Finally, you can narrow down the view using various criteria. These include a specific choice of years, different status options and the member assignments.

Filter view
Using filter options to narrow down the Gantt view
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