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Add a Task to Microsoft Project

How to add a task to your MS Project plan and set the start and finish dates

If you're new to Microsoft Project, this article will show you how to add your first task to your Microsoft Project plan, and to schedule that task with start dates and finish dates.

Adding New Tasks

  1. Start with a new Microsoft Project plan. You can do this by launching MS Project, and clicking on the Blank Project icon:
    Create a new Microsoft Project document.
  2. Left-click into the first cell under the "Task Name" column and type in the name of your task name. Be descriptive, but keep it short:
    Name your task in Microsoft Project.
  3. Once you've entered the name of your task, click on the "Duration" column and enter the number of working days that you expect the task to take. In this example, we'll schedule the task for 30 working days, so we can just enter "30" and press ENTER. You don't need to type "days". Microsoft Project will automatically assume that all of your durations are in working days, unless you say otherwise.
    Enter the task duration in days.
  4. Now, click into the "Start" column and enter the date when you would like the task to start. As soon as you press enter on the start date, notice that Microsoft Project automatically calculates the finish date based on the duration you entered in the previous step:
    Enter your start date, and Microsoft Project will automatically calculate te finish date based on your duration.
  5. From here, you can continue to add more tasks underneath the first task, until your Microsoft Project schedule looks something like this:
    Add multiple tasks to your Microsoft Project plan.

Adding Tasks in the Middle of your Microsoft Project Plan

What happens if you think that you are finished building your Microsoft Project plan, but you forgot to add a task in the middle? Don't worry! You don't have to undo all of your work or start over. Instead, you can insert a task into the middle of the other tasks in your project plan.

  1. To insert a task in the middle of existing Microsoft Project tasks, select the task below where you want to insert the new task. In this example, we want to insert a new task between "Task B" and "Task C", so we'll make sure that "Task C" is selected:
    Select a task in Microsoft Project.
  2. Press the INSERT key on your keyboard:
    Insert key.
  3. You should now have a blank row in Microsoft Project, which will give you space to enter the new task:
    Blank row in Microsoft Project.
  4. Enter the new task just as you would any other task:
    New task inserted into the middle of Microsoft Project.