New in Smartsheet: Critical Path and Duration in Minutes, Hours, and Weeks

TravisTravis Employee
edited 07/19/19 in General Announcements
07/11/15 Edited 07/19/19

We are excited to announce that Smartsheet’s two most requested features, critical path and duration in minutes, hours, and weeks, are here!

For every project, having a greater level of control over task duration and working hours helps

increase efficiency and accuracy in planning. Now, anyone managing a project has the option to set time durations in any unit they choose, including seconds, minutes, hours and weeks.

Project owners can now also identify the most important tasks with one click -- the ones that will delay your project if not completed on time. This is "critical path,” and will highlight your most critical tasks so you can stay on top of your project.

Check out our blog for more information on these features, release notes on all the enhancements from the new release, and sign up for a free online training session (on July 16th) to learn how to use partial day durations and critical path.



  • Maybe I've missed it - but can I take a duration and apply it to a time?

    I would like to show a running time based upon a base time + the duration of a task

  • I've followed the instructions but can't get the critical path to display on my current plan. Is this backwards compatible?


  • TravisTravis Employee
    edited 07/13/15

    Neil - the change to task duration affects the length you can schedule a task but does not allow you set specific time throughout the day but you could manually track this is a Text/Number column in your sheet. 



    Steve - Critical path is displayed only in the latest task in your sheet and all the tasks it is dependent on. When in your sheet, locate the latest task in your sheet and check the Gantt bar - this should be outlined in red. Are you using predecessors? Predecessors are how you designate that tasks are dependent on other tasks and are required for critical path. 



    Let us know if you are still having trouble with this! 

  • Loann McGeeLoann McGee ✭✭✭✭✭

    Good afternoon,


    Wanting to make sure I'm understanding this correctly in that this can only be used in Gantt charts, not in a sheet without such?



  • TravisTravis Employee

    Loann - critical path is only displayed in the Gantt chart for now. Adding this to the grid view is something we are looking at for future versions. 

  • JamesRJamesR ✭✭✭✭

    I believe we need the option to see time in the Start and Finish columns as if one task is dependent on another then you need to know what time the second one can start.

  • JamesRJamesR ✭✭✭✭


    Looking into this further, we know what days are working, what the duration of a working day is but not what time we start working.  Unless you can define this then time is sort of erelevant/guess work.


  • Loann McGeeLoann McGee ✭✭✭✭✭

    Bouncing off of James' comment above, a column that is truly just a time (11:00am, 2:00pm, etc), or a range of time (11:00 - 12:00pm) is a column that would be highly beneficial for our team. This allows flexibility on scheduling tasks for specific times (in our case, studio interviews), and to then sort our sheet by the date/time so they appear in chronological order.

    Unless there is a current workaround for a range of time in a single column that I am unaware of - which could most certainly be the case! ;-)


  • TravisTravis Employee

    The ability to set a specific start and end time was not included in this release but it is something we are tracking feedback for. Thanks for asking!  Smile

  • I am working on a high level plan, using weeks as units in the sublevel (indented) tasks.  However, the roll-up (outdented) rows report only in days.  Is there a way to make the Duration column show weeks only, and not a mixture of weeks and days, as this is confusing for readers especially when the calendar is set at only 5 working days per week. (i.e. there will be a tendancy to divide by 7 the number of days shown in the roll-up as all the activity lines are shown in weeks and therefore result in an incorrect number of weeks as the total duration).

  • TravisTravis Employee
    edited 08/24/15

    Rudolph - Parent rows will only show the rollup duration in days and cannot be set to show weeks. You are correct - if you want to calculate weeks off this number, you would need to divide by the number of working days rather than 7. You could always build this formula and add it to your task name cell (or another cell). For example:


    ="Section 1 - " + Duration4 / 5 + " weeks"


    This formula would show (if Duration4 = 100d):


    Section 1 - 20 weeks

  • Critical path is not visible to shared resources who has "Viewer" option. Is there a way around it, to make it visible?.

  • JamesRJamesR ✭✭✭✭

    The critical path is a personal setting and can only be set by the editors, Administrators and owners.  You could schedule an email to send a PDF on a daily/weekly period.

  • edited 08/23/15

    The HOURS setting has now made this a usable system for us. great news ! But, the Gannt chart is still only displays down to there a way to get the hours more visible??  (Each manufacturing project for us is normally 2-3 hours, so there's several projects each day, and it's hard to see)

  • TravisTravis Employee

    Charlie - the Gantt calendar does show partial days but as you have seen its hard to differential the shorter duration tasks. Do you use the iOS or Android mobile app? Both of these apps allow you to zoom in further than the desktop app, to see a more granular view of your durations.  

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