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Creating a Multi-Project Timeline in Excel

How to use OnePager Express to make timelines of multiple Excel projects

If you manage projects or schedules using an Excel spreadsheet, you may be struggling to find an easy way to summarize multiple projects into a single timeline report. Merging spreadsheets is difficult, and drawing the timeline by hand in PowerPoint takes too much time.

Multi-project timeline created in OnePager Express using several Excel project plans.

OnePager Express is a project management tool that imports project plans from multiple Excel spreadsheets to create a consolidated timeline report.

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If you don't have OnePager Express, you can download a free trial and follow these step-by-step instructions to build your first multi-project timeline. If you don't already have your project schedule set up in Excel, you can download our example files. Make sure that you download all three example Excel files plus the OnePager template file so that you follow the remaining steps:

      Project A.xlsx (Excel File)
      Project B.xlsx (Excel File)
      Project C.xlsx (Excel File)
      Multi-Project Timeline - Excel.tat (OnePager Template)

  1. Open your first Excel project plan. If prompted by Excel, click the Enable Editing button so that you'll have full access to the files you need:

    Enable editing of an Excel file.

  2. Looking at the first example Excel file, you'll see that we have a simple schedule consisting of a task name, start date, and finish date:

    First project plan (Excel spreadsheet).

    Before importing multiple projects into OnePager Express, you'll also want to specify the project name for each task, and give each task a unique ID, as shown above. Now, replicate this same format across all the Excel spreadsheets you want to include in your multi-project Excel timeline. If you're using our sample files, this has already been done for you.

  3. Go to the Add-Ins tab of Excel and click the OnePager Express button:

    OnePager Express launches from the Excel add-ins tab.

  4. From the Start screen that appears, choose New.

    OnePager Express Start screen.

  5. Select one of your spreadsheets as the first Excel source file. Then, click the Add/Remove button to add the rest of your spreadsheets. In this example, we'll import three Excel project plans into one timeline. Once you've selected everything, hit OK.

    Import multiple Microsoft Excel spreadsheets into your OnePager Gantt chart.

  6. OnePager Express will launch an easy import wizard. Give your timeline a name, and then click the Change > BROWSE FILES to select the Multi-Project Timeline - Excel template that you downloaded in the first step:

    OnePager Express' easy import wizard creates timelines and Gantt charts from Excel spreadsheets.

  7. Click Next and then Create new Chart. OnePager will import the tasks from all of your Excel spreadsheets at once and create your multi-project timeline. All of the tasks will be lined up left-to-right in a timeline format for each project, like this:

    Time management solutions: A multiple project timeline created from a project timeline spreadsheet in Excel, using the OnePager Express add-in.

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That's it! From here, you can save OnePager Express timeline as a PowerPoint or PDF file to share with everyone else on your team.

Customizable

OnePager Express allows you to customize your timeline, giving you the ability to:

  • Change colors, symbols, fonts, and layouts
  • Automatically group or color-code by resources, project phase, or any other Microsoft Excel data
  • Show baseline dates and durations
  • Add comment boxes, text boxes, curtains, or images to your project presentation
  • Split into multiple pages for timelines with lots of detail

Using OnePager Express will allow you to create dynamic, multi-project timelines in minutes, all based on data you already have in Excel.

Get started today by downloading a free trial.

15-Day
Free Trial