Planning Calendar conundrums

Planning Calendar conundrums

Mary VogtMary Vogt
edited 12/09/19 in Using Smartsheet

Hi, Community! I am wondering if anyone else is using SmartSheet for an institutional planning calendar. I chose a template of project with gantt. Most of the tasks on the calendar, however, are annual, bi-annual, semi-annual, etc. I am trying to figure out the best way to handle that. Would I only be able to do it using workflows, or can I actually use the timeline? I'm thinking if I do it that way, I would have to manually change the dates every year. Also, that template came setup with 'dependencies' for dates set up. I'm trying to figure out if I should keep that on or turn it off. Any feedback would be very welcome. Thank you!

Comments

  • Paul NewcomePaul Newcome ✭✭✭✭✭

    Depending on your use case, it may be easier to enter all of your tasks and leave the dates as blanks.

     

    You can then call this (or even save it as) a template, and then use either save as new or create new from template to easily replicate the basic layout and data. Then you would just have to enter your dates. 

     

    If you don't really need dependencies, you could even go so far as to turn them off and use formulas to automatically populate the dates based on whatever year you enter into a specific cell within the sheet.

  • So, basically re-create the tasklist every year? I guess that's one way to do it. I was hoping for something more automated, but I can't seem to figure out how to do that except through workflows; but then that wouldn't be visible to the average person. 

  • I wish there was a way to view how the templates work before selecting one. I am now thinking perhaps I chose the wrong template. 

    Some of our tasks span 5 years, some  are annually repetitive, and I have them all in the same 'calendar'. 

    Perhaps the System Development Life Cycle with Gantt is closer? 



     

  • Paul NewcomePaul Newcome ✭✭✭✭✭

    My apologies. I misread your original post. I read it as all tasks would be completed at some point throughout the same calendar year.

     

    Reading it again along with your additional comments I see now I was wrong.

     

    If you chose the wrong template, you can delete the sheets/folders/etc. relatively easily and choose another.

     

    I am not very familiar with the templates though as far as which one may better suit your needs. I generally end up having to build out my own solutions so that they can work exactly how I need them to.

     

     

    Again... My apologies for the misunderstanding.

     

  • Andrée StaråAndrée Starå ✭✭✭✭✭

    Hi Mary,

    You could also create one sheet with everything set up and then copy that down the same sheet for the coming years. It's a matter of preference and specific need.

    It could also be structured to only show what's relevant.

    Would that work?

    Hope that helps!

    Have a fantastic week!

    Best,

    Andrée Starå

    Workflow Consultant / CEO @ WORK BOLD

    work-bold

    Best,

    Andrée Starå

    Workflow Consultant / CEO @ WORK BOLD

  • Thanks, Paul, there are no wrong answers! ;) 

    I appreciate you replying. 

    I don't think I was clear enough. I am now also wondering if a dashboard approach may be better... I am basically trying to form a planning calendar system with some one-offs, some annual, bi-annual dates, some 5+ year plans/goals, etc. All in one entity. And there are about 5 different categories of tasks.

    So far, I haven't found a template that works, but if I do, can I copy all of my info into a new one easily?  I have had trouble trying to copy and paste rows in the past.

  • Andrée StaråAndrée Starå ✭✭✭✭✭

    No worries!

    You can quickly move/copy the rows to another sheet.

    I agree with Paul, and it sounds like the best way to structure a solution would be to start from scratch and work from there or look at a template that might help after the structure is complete.

    Make sense? What do you think?

    If you want to start with a template I'd recommend one of the following:

    https://www.smartsheet.com/marketplace/templates/content-calendar

    https://www.smartsheet.com/marketplace/templates/annual-calendar-day

    https://www.smartsheet.com/marketplace/templates/project-task-list

    Would they work/help?

    Best,

    Andrée Starå

    Workflow Consultant / CEO @ WORK BOLD

  • Andrée StaråAndrée Starå ✭✭✭✭✭

    I wouldn't recommend starting with a Dashboard. It's better to get the sheet structure set first and then structure the Dashboard as needed.

    You can quickly move/copy the rows to another sheet. (right-click or use the little menu on the rows to move/copy the rows)

    I hope that helps!

    Best,

    Andrée Starå

    Workflow Consultant / CEO @ WORK BOLD

  • Andrée StaråAndrée Starå ✭✭✭✭✭

    Do you have something that you could share that would show what you'd want to accomplish? (Screenshots, Exel sheet or something else) (Delete/replace any confidential/sensitive information before sharing) That would make it easier to help. (share too, [email protected])

    Best,

    Andrée Starå

    Workflow Consultant / CEO @ WORK BOLD

  • Hi, Andree,

    Yes I should have mentioned I understand that the underlying sheet(s) would need to be built first in order to go the dashboard route.

    Thank you 😊

  • Thanks, Andree, for the links!

    I am still exploring. I appreciate the help very much. I also came across the Calendar App, and I'm trying to justify the cost of it to the college, because it appears as if it would do a lot of what I need it to. Basically, I could have a pretty complex sheet and the calendar app could show the sections we want to the appropriate parties.

  • This is the .pdf of the planning calendar that I'm trying to emulate to some degree. Not the first 7 pages, but the calendars that begin on page 8. Suggestions are very welcome as to how to rework this in SmartSheet.



    I appreciate all the responses!

  • Andrée StaråAndrée Starå ✭✭✭✭✭

    @Mary Vogt

    You're more than welcome!

    Do you think that you'll get an ok to use the Calendar App? If not, I think we can create something similar as in the PDF.

    Best,

    Andrée Starå

    Workflow Consultant / CEO @ WORK BOLD

  • @Andrée Starå Our college ended up getting the calendar app, so I'm very happy with that, and am now learning how to use it. So I think that will take care of my questions up here for now. THank you!

  • Hello @Mary Vogt and @Andrée Starå

    I have been through the above and was wondering if you came up with an automated way for this type of "Rolling calendar" over a longer period?

    Thank you!

  • Andrée StaråAndrée Starå ✭✭✭✭✭

    @Mary Vogt Excellent! You're more than welcome!

    @mitchell.beness113091 Can you share some more details about how you'd want to use it?

    Best,

    Andrée Starå

    Workflow Consultant / CEO @ WORK BOLD

  • Hi @Andrée Starå ,

    I guess what I have is a list of activities that happen every month, quarter, half year and year.

    These activities in some cases, extend of multiple periods.

    What I would like is a "rolling" calendar that can almost pull these activities into a given gant calendar that extends into the foreseeable 18 months.

    Right now, I need to take all my monthly tasks for example (I have ~25x) and copy past with dates 18x for each month. Then I need to do the same for my quarterly, half yearly and yearly activities.

    Hope that makes sense!?

  • Andrée StaråAndrée Starå ✭✭✭✭✭

    @mitchell.beness113091

    Ok.

    Can you maybe share the sheet(s)/copies of the sheet(s) or some screenshots? (Delete/replace any confidential/sensitive information before sharing) That would make it easier to help. (share too, [email protected])

    Best,

    Andrée Starå

    Workflow Consultant / CEO @ WORK BOLD

  • Hi @Andrée Starå

    So here is a couple of screen shots. First showing the yearly, half year, quarter, then second showing monthly. All of these activities repeat. As it stands, I am copy pasting the same actions and manually changing the dates in each quarter/year/month etc.

    Is there a better way to automate the propagation of activities across dates in a sheet/gantt chart?




  • Andrée StaråAndrée Starå ✭✭✭✭✭

    @mitchell.beness113091

    I have a few ideas!

    I've created something similar for a client recently for a Daily need that might be able to update for your need.

    Can you maybe share the sheet(s)/copies of the sheet(s)? (Delete/replace any confidential/sensitive information before sharing) That would make it easier to help. (share too, [email protected])

    Best,

    Andrée Starå

    Workflow Consultant / CEO @ WORK BOLD

  • Hi @Andrée Starå ,


    I saw that you have downloaded my sheet, any feedback or advice?


    Looking forward to your input!


    Thanks

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