We will illustrate below how Microsoft Project, with OnePager Pro, can produce a quality timeline chart that can be updated as the project proceeds. You don't need to do anything special in MS Project to make this happen--OnePager Pro does the rest and provides you with a professional timeline presentation report that can be used in PowerPoint presentations, distributed as a PDF, or included in an email message.
If you don’t already have OnePager Pro, you can download a 15-day free trial to see how it works:
- To illustrate the creation of a summary project timeline we’ll use the following project and create a single project timeline Gantt chart.
- Double-click the OnePager Pro icon on your desktop. Choose New from the Start menu that pops up, and choose your Microsoft Project plan as the source file for your project summary timeline. An import wizard will appear, allowing you to only select summary-level tasks:
- Clicking the Create new chart button at the bottom of the wizard will create an initial project report that looks like this:
- The view above is more of a Gantt chart, so if we want to convert it to a timeline, we'll make a few modifications. Start by going to Home > Chart Properties and to the Task Bars tab. Here, we'll tell OnePager to color-code each summary task:
This will help the audience distinguish one phase of the project from the next. OnePager will assign colors automatically. We're also going to reduce the height of each bar so that it fits better on the final timeline.
- Next, we'll go to the Rows/Swimlanes tab to tell OnePager to collect each summary task into a single-row timeline instead of a Gantt chart:
- Click OK. We now have a project summary timeline that looks like this:
- You can adjust the page size and relative bar height if you want to tighten up blank space, to create a timeline like this:
This article presented an approach for taking a Microsoft Project plan and creating a summary timeline report on one page. In the process, we discussed how powerful OnePager Pro is when it comes to creating a customizing a project summary timeline.
Once created, this project summary timeline is easily inserted into PowerPoint presentations, posted to SharePoint, or sent as email messages so that others can understand issues and accomplishments.
Using OnePager Pro allows you to create dynamic, informative project presentations with the click of a button, and it eliminates the need to rebuild your presentation by hand every time your project schedule changes.15-Day