Duration and Predecessors: What to do when you have 1000s of rows?

jmhoward ✭✭✭✭✭

Hi there,

I have a sheet that contains original data as well as data imported from CSV files. We have a template that we use to copy the CSV data from different external sources.

This template contains pre-built tasks and milestones, like this:

The dates come in as TBD and the hierarchy is flat (no parent and child rows). In the screenshot above, all the lines are from the same project. A project could have 20-40 separate tasks. The sheet has multiple projects and contains more than 7,000 rows.

How would I enable dependencies and predecessors without having to touch each of the 7,000+ rows? How can I work around so many of the Task Start Date and Task End Date fields not being a date value?

Also, would I need to assign hierarchy to the rows for the dependencies and predecessors to work? I could add a helper column, Hierarchy, labeling rows with an A, B, C, or D hierarchy if that's needed.



  • Hi,

    My recommendation would be to create a separate hierarchy for each project (e.g., Project1 - parent, tasks would be children) to make it easier to manage as you can collapse projects not currently needed. Also I would suggest using project sheet/ Gant with predefined columns Start and End. You can keep them empty (except the start date of the project) and let the SmartSheet calculate the date based on filled in dependencies and Duration.

    You can create dependencies by set up of predecessors: in line of task you want to create dependency just fill in the row number of the predecessor task row to the column named "Predecessors". For this you don`t need to create hierarchy.

  • jmhoward
    jmhoward ✭✭✭✭✭

    Thanks @SmartWay360. Unfortunately, I cannot add hierarchy to the rows via indenting and creating parents/children. The data is imported via a template and it would be a manual process to add hierarchy. I can add a helper column to indicate main rows, sub rows, etc.

    Because all the rows are imported at the same time, it's not ideal to have to manually revisit each project and identify row numbers for each predecessor. I'm trying to work out a way to set this up for the entire sheet at once (if that makes sense).