Using Separate Fields for Task vs. Milestone Text

When creating a chart in OnePager, we want to make sure that the audience knows what the tasks and milestones represent. This is why the labels in a chart are so important.

Most of the time, using the same text field from MS Project will suffice for both your tasks and your milestones, but there are situations where you need to label tasks one way and milestones another. In this article, we are going to discuss how you can import data from two different Microsoft Project fields so that you can use the first field to label your tasks and the second field to label your milestones.

Let’s assume I have a chart where I want my milestones to be labeled based on Text 30, but at the same time, I want my task labels to be based on the Resource Names field. To accomplish this, we can use a Microsoft Project formula in a third field.

First, you will need to determine which field you will use for the formula. I would recommend any of the Text fields. Once you have decided on a field (we’ll use Text7), you then need to right click on the field’s name and select Custom Fields.

Once there, click the Formula button underneath Custom attributes, and a new window will open where you can enter this formula:

Switch([Milestone]=Yes,[Text30],[Milestone]=No,[Resource Names])

In plain English, this formula says to populate Text7 with the value of Text30 in the case of a milestone, and with the value of Resource Names in case of a task. This will give you a single value in Text7 that you can import into OnePager.

After the formula has been entered, hit OK. You will notice a popup window that warns you that “All existing data in the will be discarded“. This can be ignored since we used a field that does not have any data in it. Continue to select OK until you are back at you project.

You will notice that the cells in MS Project have been auto populated with the data needed for proper labeling within your chart. Once you have validated that the data is correct, proceed to creating or updating your OnePager chart.

When your chart is open, go to Project View Properties > Task Bars > Task Bar Label Properties and change the Label field to the field that holds your formula (Text7 in this case) and then hit OK.

Once complete, refresh your chart to import the newly-created Text7 field, and you will see that even though your Milestone and Task labels are using same field in OnePager they are in fact pulling data from different fields in MS Project.

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