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Multi-Phase Project Timelines from Primavera P6

Create a phase-by-phase timeline of several Primavera P6 projects

If you use Primavera P6 to manage a portfolio of multiple projects, you need a way to quickly see the major phases of each project all in one timeline. OnePager helps you do this by importing multiple schedules from Primavera P6 so that each project can be displayed phase-by-phase.

Phase-by-Phase Project Timeline from Primavera P6

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Customers and senior executives love OnePager's timeline layouts because it lets them see the key phases of each Primavera P6 project without getting into too much detail. Schedulers and PMs love it because it's fast to build and simple to maintain, since everything is based on the activities that you already have in Primavera P6. Here's how it works:

  1. Let's get started by taking a look at our portfolio of projects in Primavera P6. Here we have four projects, each with three major phases (Design, Development and Implementation) plus a finish milestone (Delivery) to mark the completion of each project:

    Portfolio of Primavera P6 projects with phases, activities, and a finish milestone.

    In this example, we want our timeline to include the three main phases from the WBS, plus the finish milestone. We don't want to include the rest of the activities, since it will be too much information to include in an executive-level timeline.

  2. To bring your Primavera P6 into OnePager, you can export them to either an XML or an XER format by going to File > Export:

    Export to Primavera P6 XML format.

  3. When you click Next, you'll have the ability to export all four projects into a single Primavera P6 XML or XER file:

    Export multiple Primavera P6 projects into a single XML or XER file.

    If you're planning to use P6 XML, we also recommend unchecking the Export all project level layouts box so that Primavera P6 creates an XML file instead of a ZIP file.

  4. Once the export is complete, launch OnePager using the desktop icon:

    OnePager desktop icon.

  5. On the start screen, click New to begin building your timeline:

    OnePager start screen.

  6. On the import wizard, go to Select > BROWSE Primavera P6 Files to import your four projects from Primavera P6.

    OnePager can import Primavera P6 projects in either XML or XER format.

  7. After you've pointed OnePager to your portfolio from Primavera P6, give your timeline a name, and then click on the option to Select tasks by custom filter:

    OnePager Timeline Creation Wizard

  8. We can create a series of filters that tells OnePager which activities and WBS items to import from Primavera P6 into the timeline, and which ones to skip:

    OnePager timeline filter applied to Primavera P6 activities, milestones, and WBS Objects

    The first filter tells OnePager to import WBS summary tasks from Primavera P6. The second filter tells OnePager to import finish milestones. Combined, these two filters will give us a high-level view of all four Primavera P6 projects.

  9. Click on Create New Chart. OnePager will import all four project from Primavera P6, apply the filters, and give us a result that initially looks like this:

    OnePager chart created from Primavera P6

    In the next section, we'll walk through how to customize the look and feel of your timeline, including colors and layouts.

Changing Layouts and Colors based on the Primavera P6 WBS

  1. Our current chart groups swimlanes first by project, and then subdivides those swimlanes based on the phases in the Primavera P6 WBS. Since our chart is already displaying those phases as tasks, we don't need to have them as swimlane groupings as well. To eliminate the secondary swimlanes, go to Home > Chart Properties > Rows/Swimlanes. Click on the Left #2 Swimlane tab and turn it off:

    Turn off sub-swimlanes

  2. Click OK and OnePager will realign the chart so that all phases and milestones are in a single line per project:

    OnePager timeline created from four Primavera P6 projects.

  3. We can also assign a unique color to each phase and milestone, so that parallel activities across each project are formatted consistently. Home > Chart Properties > Task Bars and click on the Manage Rules button to set up conditional formatting:

    Conditional formatting applied based on the WBS in Primavera P6.

    The first three rules assign a bar color and font color based on the WBS in Primavera P6. The fourth formats all finish milestones as a green triangle.

  4. Click OK. OnePager will apply the conditional formatting rules based on your Primavera P6 WBS and activity names, and reformat the chart like this:

    Phased project timeline created from multiple Primavera P6 projects.

Build your own multi-phase project timeline from Primavera P6 today by downloading a free trial.

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