New in OnePager 7.1: Emoji Milestone Shapes

With OnePager 7.1 comes a significant expansion to our milestone shapes: emojis.

It’s not just fun and games, though there is a poop emoji if you need one, and we have it on good authority that one customer is actually using it to call people out when they miss deadlines.

All kidding aside, users have come to us requesting the ability to have multi-colored milestone shapes, basically miniature pieces of clipart, and this is where emojis really deliver. With our traditional milestone shapes, you could paint them one color, but with emojis, they’re multi-colored by nature and you don’t have to take time to format them; their colors come automatically out of the box, and we think they look great.

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New in OnePager 7.1: Hash Fill Patterns

In addition to the new connections to Smartsheet and Primavera P6 that we’ve covered over the last few weeks, there are a number of other exciting new updates in OnePager 7.1 that work with all editions and all data sources.

The first of these upgrades is the ability to add hash fill patterns to any chart:

Hash fills enable you to apply a repeating pattern to the foreground color of your tasks and milestones, and have that pattern appear on top of a separate background color of your choosing. In the example above, all three shapes have a white background, but have varied foreground colors and hash fill patterns.

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OnePager Now Supports Primavera P6

In addition to our new Smartsheet connection that we announced a few weeks ago, we’re pleased to announce that OnePager Bundle 7.1 also has the ability to import data from Primavera P6.

For our many customers in the federal government, as well as those in construction, engineering, and energy, this should come as great news. The new connection eliminates the need to export from Primavera P6 into Excel, and instead gives users a choice or either XML or XER format.

Watch this short video to see how easy we make it to import Primavera P6 schedules into OnePager:

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OnePager Now Supports Smartsheet

We’re excited to announce that beginning with OnePager version 7.1, specifically the OnePager Bundle edition, we now support a direct connection to Smartsheet. If you’re a long-time OnePager user and are thinking of switching to Smartsheet, now you can. If you’re already using Smartsheet and have been making do with an Excel export, you now have a much more streamlined path.

Watch this short video to see how easy we make it to connect OnePager to Smartsheet:

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Setting a Task’s Finish Time in Excel

When creating a schedule in an Excel spreadsheet, you will have a Start date and Finish date. But there is also a time associated with those dates, and if you don’t set it, your tasks may appear to finish earlier than expected. In the example below, both tasks finish on the seventh day, but the blue task finishes at 12:00 a.m. and the red task finishes at 11:59 p.m., almost a full day later. Paying attention to the times associated with your dates in Excel will help you ensure that a task is scheduled correctly.

This blog will go over an addition to make to the formula in your Excel spreadsheet to change the time of your task Finish date.

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Conditionally Displaying Baselines

OnePager’s baseline display is a great way to compare your original project plan to the way things are now. But what if you want to only show baselines where there has actually been a change in the underlying schedule? This blog article will show you how to conditionally display Baseline Markers when there is variance between Start/Finish and Baseline Start/Baseline Finish.

To display Baseline Markers conditionally, we first need to have our data set up correctly in our Microsoft Project file. We assume you already have a Task Name with Start/Finish dates. You will also need to have Baseline Start and Baseline Finish entries.

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Timeline without Dates

With a Gantt chart, you can display Start/Finish dates that show exactly when a task starts and finishes. However, in this blog, we will be creating a dateless chart to show a graphical representation of your schedule without any specific dates displayed. 

We will start at the top of the chart with the Time Axis representing different tic units. In the example, we utilize the Month and Week units of the Time Axis.

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Identifying Late and Very Late Tasks with Finish Variance

In Microsoft Project, a field called Finish Variance shows how many days there are between the Finish and the Baseline Finish fields. Using this data can be helpful when trying to determine if your tasks are finishing on, before, or after their planned finish dates.

If you want to use the Finish Variance field in your OnePager Conditional Formatting Rules to show visually if your tasks are late, you’ll run into an issue: Microsoft Project treats Finish Variance as a string field instead of a number.

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OnePager 7.1: Seeking Beta Testers

We are excited to announce that we’ll be releasing a beta of our new OnePager version 7.1 in the next few weeks. A lot of users have already reached out and asked to be a part of our beta program for version 7.1, but if this is the first that you’re hearing about it, there is still room for you to join.

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Highlighting Estimated Tasks

The Estimated field in Microsoft Project lets you identify tasks for which dates aren’t yet set in stone:

Simply place a “Yes” next to tasks that are estimated, and leave everything else alone. If you want to make a distinction between estimated and firm tasks in your OnePager chart, you can do so with conditional formatting.

To launch conditional formatting, go to Home > Chart Properties > Task Bars, and then click the Manage Rules button in the bottom. We’re starting out with some conditional formatting rules that assign different colors based on the Status field:

A lot of beginner OnePager users assume that conditional formatting can only used for color, or that conditional formatting can only look at one Microsoft Project field at a time. Both of these assumptions are incorrect. Even though we already have a set of rules that assign color based on status, we can add a separate rule that looks for tasks where the Estimated flag field is true:
Once you’ve set up the condition, scroll to the right and assign a dotted border, like this:
Click OK on the border selector, and you’ll see the dotted border appear in the conditional formatting grid:

Click OK to close the Conditional Formatting Rules screen, and then click OK again to close Chart Properties. Your chart will update so that all estimated tasks appear with a dotted black border, while still retaining their main colors that are based on status: