Duration v actual time

Options

Is there a way to add a task that might be 4 days over a one month period, for example. So I don't have to create a separate task for every time that task happens, I just want to show a task that runs from 1 May to 30 May but takes 4 days to complete?

I have considered different options, including changing the appearance of the bar in Gantt view (also asked this question on here if this can be done) as a workaround, so the task should still show as being 30 days but I can visually indicate it is only 4 days by breaking the bar using a dotted line.

I can't find a solution. Any suggestions welcome!

Thanks.

Answers

  • Genevieve P.
    Options

    Hi @BeckyK5555555555555

    The way I would do this is to use the Parent-Child relationship in a Project Plan. I'd have one "Parent" row with the task name, then I would have 4 individual rows indented below this task to identify the 4 days that the work would be completed on (or 2 rows of 2 days, etc).

    This would show up in the Gantt chart as the Parent row having a grey overall bar, from the earliest start date to the latest end date of the Child rows, but then it would show just the 4 days of the actual work:

    See: Parent Rollup Functionality

    Cheers,

    Genevieve

    Join us at Smartsheet ENGAGE 2024 🎉
    October 8 - 10, Seattle, WA | Register now

  • Thanks Genevieve P., that's what I'm doing currently, but I was hoping for a better solution. It probably would have been a better example if I'd used a task that occurs for a day a week throughout a year, so I want one line and not 52 lines all manually created. That's a better illustration of what I'm having to do!

    I've also raise a question here on recurring tasks in case there's a solution from that angle, but got no joy on that either.

    A related issue is that I can't even automatically schedule them by creating a predecessor because there seems to be no way to not have that automatically place the next task directly after its predecessor instead of a week later. So, for example, if I wanted to have training take place every tuesday for 6 months, if I create a dependency that training one has to take place before training two, I can't have them a week apart if the duration is only one day. Smartsheets will always place training two on Wednesday if training one took place on Tuesday. If there's a way to change that, let me know.

    I really have tried everything I could think of!

  • Genevieve P.
    Options

    Hi @BeckyK5555555555555

    There currently isn't a way to display multiple tasks on one line, with independent dates on that line. You would need to either have one long task or multiple rows to indicate the multiple task dates throughout the year.

    In regards to your related issue, you can add Lag or Lead time to a Predecessor relationship by adding the number of days to that Predecessor cell.

    For example: 2FS + 7d

    This says that the current row is dependent on row 2, in a "Finish to Start" type of relationship, but that it should start 7 days after the previous row has finished.

    See the bottom of this Help Article: Work with Duration and Predecessors

    Cheers,

    Genevieve

    Join us at Smartsheet ENGAGE 2024 🎉
    October 8 - 10, Seattle, WA | Register now

  • "For example: 2FS + 7d"

    Thanks Genevieve P., that's one of the solutions I was hoping for but couldn't find - great :) This works perfectly for what I wanted.

    Out of interest, has this always been a function? I've seen a few years worth of people asking for recurring task type functionality and each time the only solutions given slightly misunderstand the requirement - but this would have resolved the queries I've seen (that were the same or similar to mine).

    I'll update my question on another post to show your answer - thanks again, you've really helped me.

  • Genevieve P.
    Options

    This is great news, I'm glad I could help!

    Lag and Lead time have been available for many years, so I hope this answer can help other users looking for the same thing as well.

    Cheers,

    Genevieve

    Join us at Smartsheet ENGAGE 2024 🎉
    October 8 - 10, Seattle, WA | Register now

Help Article Resources

Want to practice working with formulas directly in Smartsheet?

Check out the Formula Handbook template!