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Sunday, June 1, 2008

Google Spreadsheets Tips: Gantt Chart (Microsoft Project-like) using Widget

Google Spreadsheets is a powerful web application to do everything you do using Excel. A nice way to use it is to manage a project plan with a gantt chart (microsoft project-like) and share it on-line with your team.This is a free and versatile solution to do that. This tutorial illustrates how to use Google Spreadsheets Viewpath Gadget to implement it.

Take a look at this spreadsheet

Step 1: Project Plan structure
First step is defiing your project plan structure. I suggest you to use this basic structure:
Column A: Task ID (WBS) (an unique ID which identifyes each task with a progressive number).
Column B: Task description (a short description of the activity).
Column C: Percentage of completion (0%-100%).
Column D: Predecessor (finish-start relationships between tasks).
Column E: Start date (task start date).
Column F: Finis date (task finish date).
The result is something like this:

All previous fields are required for viewpath gadget but, if you want, you can add other columns with other infos (for example the name of a resource assigned to each task, task duration in terms of day, ecc...). When your project plan structure is completed you are ready to add Gantt Chart using Google Spreadsheets Viewpath Gadget.

Step 2: Add Gantt Gadget
Click on Chart icon and select Gadget option.

In the Gadget window find and select Gantt Chart gadget (by Viewpath) and click on Add to spreadsheet button:

In the option window assign all required parameters to the correct column of your project plan structure (for example Start dates in this example are in the column E):

After assigned all columns, click on apply button and see the result. Now you can save your project plan , publish and share it with all member of your team.

Related Content
See also the following link about this topic:

blog comments powered by Disqus
samccoy said...

Now I know what the Gantt Gadget is. I can see it would be a very effective visualization of your data.

I use the Google Spreadsheet with the Google Survey tool. This tutorial on visualizing the data in a meaningful way will be a great addition to my tech integration toolbox. Thanks!

Anonymous said...

You have to write plain numbers ranging from 0 to 100 in order to make the percentage complete column to work. Otherwise it will just show nothing.

So use "10" instead of "10%", for example.

Gerardo said...

Great guide, unfortunately, this gadget is not longer available.

Anonymous said...

As of July 1, 2008 the gadget does appear to be available. It was under Featured Gadgets, about 6-7 gadgets down.

Anonymous said...

It is available...I just set it up! It's great and thanks for the note about not typing the % sign in the Data Sheet.

Graeme S Baker said...

Love it!

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