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What Is Oracle Primavera P6? Uses, Features & Pricing

PM Articles by ProjectManager.com. 

There are a lot of project management software tools to choose from, and there are a few that truly seem to dominate the space, like Oracle’s Primavera P6. How can you find the project management solution that fits your organization, project and how your team works? You must first understand what these tools are and the feature set they offer.

Primavera P6 is the product of the multinational computer technology corporation Oracle. For such a well-known brand, it’s a product that doesn’t have great name recognition, even among those in the industry.

It’s time to change that. Let’s take a closer look at Oracle Primavera P6 to see what it can do and if it’s right the right choice for your project management needs.

What Is Primavera P6?

Oracle Primavera P6 is a project, program and portfolio management tool that’s used for planning, managing and executing your project work. It’s designed to handle large and small projects in many diverse industries, such as construction, manufacturing, energy, and IT. It’s been doing so for more than 30 years in projects across the globe.

Primavera P6 can trace its origins to 1983 when it was first established under the name Primavera Systems. In the next 15 years, it rapidly gained popularity. By the late 90s, advancements in server technology drove the company to split Primavera systems into two versions of the software: a desktop application (which is preferred by contractors, suppliers and manufacturing companies) and a web-based enterprise option.

In 2008, Primavera Systems was bought out by Oracle, which then developed the tool into the Primavera software that’s used today.

The modern incarnation, Oracle Primavera P6, sells itself as a project portfolio management tool to increase your efficiency when planning, which reduces the risk of schedule overruns. One way it does this is by providing visibility into the work, so potential bottlenecks can be identified and resolved before they cause delays. It claims to work on projects of all sizes.

Primavera P6 Features

Let’s zoom in closer on Primavera P6. First, it’s a tool that works on an enterprise structure. That means it goes from the highest level of management down the line of project members. In terms of the key features, they are as follows.

  • Project timelines: A traditional Gantt chart to schedule tasks on a bar graph
  • Risk management: Identify, track and resolve risks before they become issues
  • Information dashboard: A dashboard to track key project metrics
  • Reporting & analytics: Ability to generate status reports for stakeholders
  • Calendar & activity views: View project tasks set over a calendar view
  • Scheduling alerts: Keep the project on track by always knowing what’s due when
  • Project network view: Project network diagrams allow users to visualize their project schedules by sequencing project activities.
  • Work breakdown structure: P6 allows users to create a work breakdown structure that lets them group related tasks together and establish a hierarchy.
  • Critical path method (CPM): Oracle Primavera lets users find the critical path of their projects. The critical path method is an important project scheduling technique that allows project managers to estimate the total duration of a project and determine which project tasks must be completed on time for the project to be delivered on schedule.

What Is Primavera P6 Used for?

Primavera P6 is used for project, program and portfolio management, thanks to its robust project management features. Here’s an overview of how Oracle Primavera works.

  • Project planning & scheduling: Primavera P6 offers Gantt charts, project tables and network diagrams as its main project planning and scheduling tools. These tools allow users to create scope, schedule and resource baselines.
  • Project portfolio management: It can manage multiple projects in a program or portfolio at once with the enterprise project structure (EPS) tool.
  • Resource management: Keep track and reallocate resources as needed by using customizable resource leveling forms.
  • Risk management: Risk analysis features allow project managers to identify, track and resolve risks before they become issues.
  • Contract management: Manage multiple projects, and get info from the database fast.
  • Project Reporting: Report on timelines, resources and costs.

Who Uses Primavera P6?

Oracle Primavera P6 is used by project managers who are in charge of delivering a project, program or portfolio of projects. Primavera P6 is mostly used for large-scale construction projects, but it can also be used in other fields such as business and manufacturing.

Any project professional can benefit from P6, such as engineers, schedulers and others who are instrumental in planning, management and reporting on the project. It’s usually recommended that whoever uses the Primavera software takes a training course. The tool is built to help manage complex projects and therefore using it can be complicated as well.

Primavera P6 Plans and Pricing

There are two main versions of Primavera P6. There’s Primavera P6 Professional and Primavera P6 Enterprise Project Portfolio Management (EPPM). In addition, Oracle developed Oracle Primavera Cloud, which is a new cloud-based PPM platform. Here’s a quick overview of their pricing plans.

Oracle Primavera P6 Professional

The P6 Professional version of Primavera is a desktop-based software that can be purchased directly from Oracle, or through an authorized Oracle reseller. You’ll need to install the software on all your workstations. Oracle Primavera P6 Professional will cost $2,570 for an annual subscription. That price includes $2,020 plus an annual maintenance fee of $550 for upgrades, fixes, patches, etc. The renewal of the maintenance cost isn’t required, but it’s suggested.

Oracle Primavera P6 EPPM

There’s also the enterprise option, Primavera P6 Enterprise Professional Project Management (EPPM). This version of Primavera P6 is accessed via the web rather than being a desktop software application which makes it easier to implement in large organizations. It also has a slightly different feature set from the P6 Professional option. This option will run you $2,750 for a perpetual license, which includes an annual maintenance fee of $605.

Oracle Primavera Cloud (OPC)

Like Primavera P6 Professional and Primavera P6 EPPM, Oracle Primavera Cloud focuses on project, program and portfolio management, but has a different feature set. OPC has the added benefits of faster delivery and fosters collaboration to improve efficiency and quality.

However, the features that you’ll get with Oracle Primavera Cloud depend on the license plan you choose, which is even more expensive than the desktop version of Primavera P6. OPC has the following license plans:

  • Oracle Primavera scheduling cloud service: $1,320 user/year
  • Oracle Primavera task management cloud service: $660 user/year
  • Oracle Primavera progress cloud service: $144 user/year
  • Oracle Primavera portfolio planning cloud service: $2,640 user/year

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Project Dashboard Template

Use this free Project Dashboard Template for Excel to manage your projects better.

Pros and Cons of Primavera P6

There are some things that Primavera P6 does well, along with some features that have some drawbacks. If you’re still on the fence, here’s a look at its pros and cons.

Pros of Using Primavera P6

  • Primavera software is flexible when it comes to managing tasks, with one platform that allows users to prioritize, execute and monitor their work
  • A multiuser system lets teams work at the same time on the same project across the organization.
  • Real-time reporting provides meaningful data delivered fast, either on-demand or scheduled.
  • The dashboard allows users to manage a single project or even a portfolio, with great flexibility.
  • Primavera P6 integrates with Oracle and other third-party products.
  • P6 can be used on multiple devices, such as tablets and mobile devices for access anywhere and at any time.
  • P6 works on Windows as a desktop (or web app with the Enterprise option).

Cons of Using Primavera P6

  • Primavera software is very expensive; you’re going to spend close to three grand a year for something you can get elsewhere for less financial investment.
  • The complicated interface of Oracle’s Primavera P6 also looks outdated and not up to the design and ease of use of its competition.
  • There’s a steep learning curve; unlike other tools, it can take up to 40 hours to get comfortable on the device and that’s with the use of specialized trainers.
  • Primavera P6 is for Windows only, which puts Mac users out in the cold, making the tool immediately limited and denying whole industries that run on Apple products.
  • P6 is cumbersome for smaller and simpler projects, seemingly interested only in the larger project sector.
  • The Primavera software customer service could be better, at least there’s a lot of chatter online from customers who feel the support needs to improve.
  • Primavera P6 lacks a portfolio roadmap, which is a problem for managing portfolios, even though the product does have some features directly targeting this market.

ProjectManager Is the Best Primavera P6 Alternative

If Primavera P6 doesn’t seem like the right project management software for you, then you may be interested in an alternative. ProjectManager is a cloud-based project management tool that’s less expensive and easier to use than Oracle Primavera P6, with all the same features you need to manage your project, program or portfolio. Instead of an expensive licensing fee, you can pick the subscription tier that fits your team and budget.

Robust Gantt Charts for Project, Program and Portfolio Management

ProjectManager’s Gantt charts let you plan, schedule and track projects, programs and portfolios. Create schedule baselines and automatically generate a work breakdown structure (WBS) and find the critical path of your projects as you add tasks to the Gantt chart. You can also track costs for each task and use resource management tools such as timesheets and workload charts for better resource allocation and resource-leveling.

ProjectManager's Gantt chart, an ideal alternative for Primavera p6 usersProjectManager's Gantt chart, an ideal alternative for Primavera p6 users

Powerful PPM Roadmaps, Dashboards & Reports

Like Primavera P6, we have portfolio project management features. Unlike Primavera software, we offer a portfolio roadmap to see all your projects on one timeline. This allows you to make strategic decisions on sharing resources to keep costs down and schedules tight. There’s also a portfolio dashboard and you can see all your projects with metrics on the overview projects page. You can also generate project, program and portfolio management reports in minutes.

PPM software by ProjectManage which can replace primavera p6PPM software by ProjectManage which can replace primavera p6

ProjectManager Works on Mac

Unfortunately, Primavera P6 only works on Windows. If your team uses Macs, then they won’t be able to use the tool. Luckily, ProjectManager can work with any operating system and on any browser. Like Primavera P6, we have portfolio project management features. Unlike Primavera P6, we offer a portfolio roadmap to see all your projects on one timeline, allowing you to make strategic decisions on sharing resources to keep costs down and schedules tight. There’s also a portfolio dashboard and you can see all your projects with metrics on the overview projects page.

ProjectManager works on Mac devices, unlike primavera p6ProjectManager works on Mac devices, unlike primavera p6

If you want to learn more about our award-winning software, visit our homepage to check out the rest of our features and see why we’re trusted by brands like Volvo, NASA and more.

ProjectManager is online project management software that organizes your projects and teams to work more productively. It can handle big to small projects, whether you’re working in a traditional methodology or within an agile framework. See how we can help you plan, monitor and report on your project more effectively by taking advantage of our free 30-day trial offer.

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How to Write a Scope of Work (Examples & Template Included)

PM Articles by ProjectManager.com. 

What Is a Scope of Work?

A scope of work document is an agreement on the work you’re going to perform on the project. A scope of work in project management includes deliverables, a timeline, milestones and reports. Let’s look closer at each of these elements below.

What Should Be Included in a Scope of Work Document?

Here’s an overview of the main components of a scope of work. You can add or remove some of these elements to better adjust to your project stakeholders’ requirements.

Project Deliverables

This is what your project delivers. Whether it’s a product or a service, it’s the reason you’re executing the project for your customer, stakeholder or sponsor. Whatever that deliverable is, and it can be some sort of document or report, software, product, build (or all of the above), you need to clearly identify each item here. Creating a work breakdown structure can help with this step. Also, make sure there’s an acceptance criterion for the project deliverables, such as quality standards or functional requirements.

Project Timeline

Think of a timeline as a road leading from the start of a project to its end. It’s a section of the document that delineates the major phases across the schedule of the project’s duration. It should also mark the points in the project when your deliverables are ready. As you can guess, it’s essential to scope out the overall plan of any project. This is best presented visually, like a rolled-up Gantt chart plan, so the stakeholders can see the high-level timeline.

With ProjectManager, you can build a timeline in seconds with our online Gantt chart maker. Create a budget, assign tasks, add dependencies and more. Then present to your team and stakeholders to get the project moving on the right foot. Try it free today.

ProjectManager's Gantt chartProjectManager's Gantt chart
Build timelines, track costs, manage resources and more with ProjectManager. Learn more

Project Milestones

Projects can be long and complex, which is why they’re laid out over a timeline and broken down into more manageable parts called tasks. Larger phases of the project are marked by what’s called a milestone. It’s a way to help you monitor the progress of the project to ensure it’s adhering to your planned schedule. Define your key milestones on a timeline in the scope of work document, including project kickoffs, meetings, hand-offs, etc.

Project Reports

You’ll be generating these throughout the project, delivered to either your team or customer, stakeholder or sponsor. These can include status reports, progress reports, variance reports and more. They’re a formal record of the progress of your project, but they’re also a means of communication beyond whether the project’s on schedule or not. Depending on how you customize reports, there’s a wealth of data that can serve a number of different audiences. Define how you’ll be reporting on the project and when the stakeholders can be expecting them and from whom.

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Project Scope Template

Use this free Project Scope Template for Word to manage your projects better.

How to Write a Scope of Work

Now that we’ve listed the elements of a scope of work document, let’s go through the step-by-step process of writing one. These steps can help you create a scope of work for different industries such as construction or manufacturing.

  1. Define the project goals: Before writing a scope of work, you should define what project goals will be accomplished through the execution of the project tasks that’ll be included in your scope of work.
  2. Use a work breakdown structure to identify project tasks: The first step when writing a scope of work is to identify all your project tasks. This is done by using a work breakdown structure (WBS), a project management tool that lets you break down projects and work packages into individual tasks, so you can better plan and schedule them.
  3. Determine your project deliverables: A project deliverable is a tangible or intangible output from tasks. They’re an important part of a scope of work as they’re the outcomes of the project.
  4. Establish acceptance criteria for your project deliverables: Project deliverables must meet the acceptance criteria established by the project client, such as quality standards or functionality requirements.
  5. Use the CPM method to create a project timeline: The critical path method is a project scheduling technique that allows project managers to create a project timeline and estimate project duration by identifying the longest sequence of tasks. It’s important that you use this or other project scheduling techniques to create a realistic schedule for your scope of work.
  6. Establish payment terms for the project: You may include payment terms as a section of your scope of work.
  7. Establish project reporting procedures: Communication between the project team and project stakeholders is very important, so your scope of work document should include a section that explains how reporting will take place.

Scope of Work Example

To understand the purpose and importance of a scope of work in project management, let’s start with a simple scope of work example, planning a wedding. A wedding is a project, and depending on the bridezilla (or groomzilla), it could be bigger and more complicated than building a highway or an airport. Let’s take one aspect of that larger project, the wedding invitations, and break this down into a scope of work. We’ll outline the deliverables, timeline, milestones and reports in this scope of work example.


  • Invite list
  • Addresses of attendees
  • Invites
  • Addressed envelopes
  • Stamps


  • Jan. 1: Decide on the invite list
  • Feb. 1: Have addresses collected of attendees
  • March 1: Pick invitation style and have printed
  • April 1: Address and mail invites
  • May 1: Get the final count of guests
  • June 1: Wedding


  • Selection of guests and collection of addresses
  • Mailing of invitations
  • The final count of attendees


  • Check on the status of address collection
  • Stay in touch with the printer for progress on invitations
  • Check RSVPs against the invitation list

Related: Free Project Management Templates & Spreadsheets for Excel

Construction Scope of Work Example

Now, let’s create a scope of work for a small construction project, building a house. This project involves many steps, but for practical purposes, this construction scope of work example will only focus on some of the main deliverables, timelines, milestones and reports.

Project deliverables: These project deliverables are individual, tangible outputs from different construction activities.

  • Land clearing
  • Ground leveling
  • Footings
  • Foundation
  • Sewer Lines
  • Wood Framing
  • Sheathing Installation
  • HVAC system installation
  • Electrical panels and wiring installation
  • Roof installation
  • Insulation installation
  • Drywall installation
  • Interior painting, appliances, cabinets and other final details

Project Timeline: The scope of work timeline depends on the complexity of the construction design and the agreement that the project owner reaches with the general contractor, who will hire subcontractors to accomplish different types of construction work.

Project Milestones: The scope of work milestones marks important achievements during the project as tasks are completed. Instead of referring to individual project deliverables, they describe project phases that have been completed successfully. As a project manager, you might choose the milestones that are significant for your project.

  • The building envelope has been completed
  • Foundation, framing, plumbing and electrical inspections have been passed
  • Exterior work has been completed
  • Interior work has been completed
  • Project has been delivered successfully

Project Reports: The reports that you use to track the scope of work might vary, but these are essential construction project reports.

  • Project status reports
  • Daily construction logs
  • Construction punch list

Why Is It Important to Write a Scope of Work?

Here are some of the reasons why writing a scope of work is beneficial for projects.

Defines the Project Scope

The main purpose of a scope of work is to define the scope of a project. This means defining the work that’ll be done as well as project exclusions, activities or deliverables which aren’t part of a project.

Prevents Scope Creep

Scope creep is a risk that can affect any project. It occurs when additional project tasks are added to the initial project scope during the execution of a project. These unplanned additions of work cause extra costs and derail the project schedule. Scope creep can be avoided by having a clear scope of work that establishes what will and what won’t be executed. However, changes might be made to the project scope by using a change request, another important project management document.

Sets Clear Expectations for Project Stakeholders

Without a scope of work document, project stakeholders might have unrealistic expectations about a project, such as assuming certain tasks and deliverables will be done. Therefore, it’s important for project managers and project teams to make sure there’s a scope of work that lets stakeholders know what to expect.

Scope of Work Tips

But before you get to writing, you need to make sure you follow these tips.

  1. Be specific: explain the terms used clearly
  2. Use visuals: a picture is worth a thousand words
  3. Get sign-offs: make sure everyone who needs to okay the work, does

It’s not that difficult, but it needs to be thorough because you don’t want to have to play catch-up with paperwork when you’re in the heat of the project.

Pro tip: The SOW is essential to the project plan and is often included as part of the overall project plan, but it can be time-consuming to write. Remember to use our free scope and project planning template to help save you time. The link is at the top of the page!

How to Manage Your Scope of Work With Project Management Software

It can feel overwhelming with so many tasks to keep track of, but project management software can simplify the process. In ProjectManager, you can import your spreadsheet or use one of our industry-specific templates to get you started.

A list of tasks is only a start. To bring order to that chaos, you’ll want to estimate duration by adding start and finish dates. We then automatically put your tasks on a timeline in our Gantt chart project view, so you can see the whole project in one place. Further reign in the tasks by prioritizing them, linking dependencies to prevent bottlenecks later in the project and setting milestones to break up the larger project into more manageable phases.

ProjectManager's Gantt chartProjectManager's Gantt chart

Collaborate at the Task Level

Tasks need people to execute them and move your project forward. You have your schedule, so onboard your team and start assigning them tasks. You can do this from any of our multiple project views. We offer collaborative tools that make teams more productive and help them work together. You can direct them with task descriptions and by attaching files to the task. Then, they can work together, commenting at the task level with other team members, who are notified by email. This is great for remote teams and even those working in the same room.

Task list in ProjectManagerTask list in ProjectManager

Track Progress to Stay On Time and Under Budget

Speaking of distributed teams, how can you keep track of their progress if you can’t check in on them? We solve that problem with great monitoring features, such as a real-time dashboard that shows you task progress, costs and other high-level views of the project. Our software takes status updates and automatically displays them in easy-to-read charts and graphs. You can even share them at stakeholder meetings to keep them in the loop.

ProjectManager's dashboardProjectManager's dashboard

For more in-depth data, we feature one-click reports that can be filtered to show just the data you’re looking for. Reports track project variance, workload and more. You’ll catch issues and resolve them quickly before they become problems that threaten to derail your project.

If you want that scope of work to be the beginning of a beautiful project, then try ProjectManager for free with our 30-day trial offer.

Video: Scope of Work Best Practices

In this video, Jennifer Bridges, PMP, shows you how to write a scope of work for project management. Follow her steps to get started or use our project plan and scope document template!

Here’s a shot of the whiteboard for your reference!

Snapshot of the whiteboard for the How to Write a Scope of Work Video

Snapshot of the whiteboard for the How to Write a Scope of Work Video

If you need a tool that can help you manage and track your scope of work document, then sign up for our software now at ProjectManager.

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Best Wrike Alternatives of 2023 (Free + Paid)

PM Articles by ProjectManager.com. 

There are many Wrike alternatives that offer Wrike’s features and then some; more features, a better user experience, and, in many cases, a lower price point. Don’t partner with the loudest voice, consider the best Wrike alternatives of 2023 that we’ve tested instead. Chances are high that a project management software from this list will speak your language.

Why People Seek a Wrike Alternative

Despite its upsides, Wrike can only take you so far in project management. While Wrike allows you to manage tasks, it fails to follow through on its promise of a fully-fledged project management solution, forcing some users to seek a Wrike alternative.

First, it’s not easy for beginners to jump in and get started with its project management tools, which is difficult for team onboarding. The interface is complicated, especially if you’re managing more than one project. Also, Wrike’s project management features aren’t as robust as project managers need.

What Features Make the Best Wrike Alternatives for Project Management?

Let’s go over Wrike’s key features, so you know what to look for when choosing a Wrike alternative.

  • Gantt charts: Wrike’s Gantt charts allow you to assign tasks, set task dependencies and calculate the critical path of your project. However, they don’t show the work breakdown structure (WBS) of projects.
  • Kanban boards: Wrike has kanban boards, but they’re limited, as they only let users enter a task name, due dates and assignee. Look for a Wrike alternative that offers kanban boards with advanced features such as file sharing, tags and real-time collaboration.
  • Project dashboards: Wrike has project dashboards that let project managers keep track of their project progress and costs.
  • Task management: Besides Gantt charts and kanban boards, Wrike offers workflow automation and task approvals, which are features you should look for when choosing a Wrike alternative.
  • Project reporting: Wrike doesn’t offer project reports, which are fundamental for project management. Some Wrike alternatives in this list have project reporting features, which makes them a better choice for project managers.
  • Resource management: Wrike’s resource planning features focus on workload tracking and resource utilization.
  • Team collaboration: Wrike is an online project management tool that allows teams to communicate through its Gantt charts and kanban boards.

Thankfully, there are other platforms with similar project management tools at a comparable price point. We’ll take a look at 12 of the best Wrike alternatives for 2023 so you can find project management software that suits your needs.

2023 Best Wrike Alternative Software Rankings

There are many Wrike alternatives in the market, and each has key features and characteristics that make them unique. The following list includes free, freemium, cloud-based or open-source options. Look through them and decide which is the best Wrike alternative for you.

1. ProjectManagerProjectManager logo, one of the best Wrike AlternativesProjectManager logo, one of the best Wrike Alternatives

  • Best Wrike alternative for project management
  • Great time and cost-tracking features
  • Multiple project management views

ProjectManager compiles your favorite project management tools to help you plan and track progress from one location. This Wrike alternative makes it easy for project managers and their teams to plan projects, manage work and collaborate alongside the work. It offers multiple project views so everyone can work how they choose, fostering team collaboration every step of the way.

Manage Tasks Across Multiple Project Views

ProjectManager is the best Wrike alternative because managers and teams can work how they want, choosing from traditional Gantt charts, sheet views, task lists and calendars. If a more agile tool is needed, teams can use kanban boards. Having multiple views boosts productivity for cross-functional teams, allowing different departments to work better together. It even features workflow and automation with triggers that automatically push work forward and ensure quality with task approvals.  A proven collaboration approach for this tool is to make a plan on the Gantt chart, then have the team execute the plan in the project view of their choosing.

ProjectManager's Gantt chartProjectManager's Gantt chart

Track Multiple Projects on Real-Time Dashboards

You’ll want a Wrike alternative that offers compelling features such as real-time portfolio dashboards that can track time, resources and progress across a portfolio of projects. ProjectManager has these features and can deal with expenses, budgeting and resource management, all features that Wrike doesn’t offer. As the best Wrike alternative, ProjectManager has the features you need to plan, monitor and report on projects throughout their life cycle. Plan and report on projects with a level of sophistication that yields real insights.

ProjectManager’s dashboard view, which shows six key metrics on a projectProjectManager’s dashboard view, which shows six key metrics on a project

When you consider the robust project management, work management and collaboration features that ProjectManager offers, it’s clear that it’s the best Wrike alternative for 2023. Ready to try it for yourself? Get started for free today.


  • Team: $13/user/month, billed annually
  • Business: $24/user/month, billed annually

Quick Facts

  • ProjectManager has a 30-day free trial
  • ProjectManager has a mobile project management app for Android and iOS

2. Smartsheetcheckbox next to the smartsheet logo, one of the best Wrike alternativescheckbox next to the smartsheet logo, one of the best Wrike alternatives

  • Best Wrike alternative for project spreadsheets
  • Uncomplicated and easy to learn
  • User-friendly interface

Smartsheet has a simplicity that benefits project managers and team members who don’t have the time to invest in learning how to use a new complicated project management tool. However, the downside is that Smartsheet can only take you so far in terms of providing robust project management software. This cloud-based software is a nice alternative to Wrike in that it has a fairly user-friendly interface.

wrike alternative called smartsheetwrike alternative called smartsheet

While Smartsheet offers a limited palette of project management features, the software has many third-party integrations with other enterprise tools and mobile apps that can fill the gaps. One of those gaps includes not being able to assign multiple team members the same task. The dashboard is limited, which reduces clarity when trying to focus on progress. While there’s some automation, setup is not easy. A poor setup process can be overlooked, but rudimentary resource planning is fatal. However, if spreadsheets are your tool of choice, consider exploring this Wrike alternative.


  • Pro plan: $7/user/month, billed annually
  • Business plan: $25/user/month, billed annually

Quick Facts

  • Smartsheet has a 30-day free trial
  • Smartsheet has a mobile project management app available for Android and iOS

3. Microsoft ProjectMicrosoft Project logo, one of the best Wrike alternatives for project managementMicrosoft Project logo, one of the best Wrike alternatives for project management

  • Best Wrike alternative for Microsoft users
  • Seamless integration with MS Office
  • MS Sharepoint for file sharing

When it comes to Wrike alternatives, the elephant in the room is undoubtedly Microsoft Project. It has all of the project management tools one would expect including project planning and scheduling, risk management, work management and budgeting. MS Project has a Gantt chart and a dashboard to follow the progress of your project and reporting functionalities, too. It can be used as a desktop application and there’s a cloud-based version. However, exporting a project file is unnecessarily complex even when using the add-on MS SharePoint for file sharing. The software’s key features are also notoriously hard to use or adjust settings. Many team members don’t want to use MS Project because of its steep learning curve which can lead to a lack of collaboration.

Microsoft Project, a great Wrike alternativeMicrosoft Project, a great Wrike alternative

While there are several subscription tiers, the price is still on the high end of project management software. The price per month increases exponentially per user as you add team members and expand the feature list. In addition, the user interface is hard to use, especially for new users. What’s worse, the help articles aren’t helpful but wordy and unclear. Microsoft Project also isn’t built to work in an agile project management framework or with scrum teams, making it feel dated and behind the times. However, if you’re a traditional PM who likes waterfall, you may enjoy this Wrike alternative.


  • Project Plan 1: $10/user/month
  • Project Plan 3: $30/user/month
  • Project Plan 5: $55/user/month

Quick Facts

  • Microsoft Project has a 30-day free trial
  • Microsoft Project doesn’t have a mobile project management app

4. ClickUpClickup, one of the best Wrike alternativesClickup, one of the best Wrike alternatives

  • Best Wrike alternative for integrations
  • Good fit for teams of any size and industry
  • Manages capacity

You’ll appreciate this Wrike alternative as it works with all kinds of teams, no matter the size or industry. ClickUp lets you assign tasks to teams, manage projects and collaborate. There are features that streamline projects and workflows, create schedules, manage capacity and track time. With customizable features, ClickUp is a good tool for teams that are working in an agile environment. Teams can create scrum dashboards and automate a sprint point system.

ClickUp, a wrike alternativeClickUp, a wrike alternative

All of these features can be a problem as you set up your tool for the first time or onboard team members. There’s a steep learning curve that can detract from your progress and productivity. We’d recommend Wrike alternatives that are more user-friendly. What’s the point of having features if you can’t use them? The same is true with its customization; it’s nice that the tool is fully customizable but this high level of flexibility makes users do a lot of work before they can start their job.


  • Unlimited: $5/user/month, billed annually
  • Business: $12/user/month, billed annually
  • Business Pro: $19/user/month, billed annually

Quick Facts

  • ClickUp doesn’t have a free trial
  • ClickUp has a mobile project planning for Android and iOS

5. MondayMonday.com one of the best Wrike alternatives for team collaborationMonday.com one of the best Wrike alternatives for team collaboration

  • Best Wrike alternative for task management
  • Highly visually appealing tool
  • Great at organizing information

You probably know about Monday as it’s hard to avoid their onslaught of advertising. They’re a Wrike alternative that has placed its sights solely on a nonprofessional audience. That doesn’t mean project managers can’t find something they like about the software. Its user experience is pleasant and visually connects everyone on the team. It does a great job of organizing information, however, it feels like it’s for a consumer that isn’t working in IT, construction, professional services or manufacturing.

Monday.com, one of the best wrike alternativesMonday.com, one of the best wrike alternatives

It’s a tool made for people outside of an office job or for those not in a demanding industry. Monday isn’t the best at tracking your project goals and, even worse, doesn’t allow you to assign comments to team members. The task dependencies functionality is lacking, which can cause delays that might throw off your project schedule or budget. In addition to its functionality downsides, Monday isn’t cheap. Some will find this a Wrike alternative worth using, which is why we have it on our list, but more complex projects will have to look elsewhere.


  • Basic: $8/user/month, billed annually
  • Standard: $10/user/month, billed annually
  • Pro: $16/user/month, billed annually
  • 3-seat minimum

Quick Facts

  • Monday has a 14-day free trial
  • Monday has a mobile project management for Android and iOS

6. AsanaAsana, one of the best Wrike alternativesAsana, one of the best Wrike alternatives

  • Best Wrike alternative for cross-functional work
  • Has workflow automation
  • Dynamic reporting tools

Asana is a Wrike alternative that combines scheduling, collaboration, documentation and reporting tools. It offers workflow automation and reporting with dashboards, charts and graphs. You can create work requests and it integrates with many third-party apps. That and its easy customization is all going to attract users to this Write alternative.

Asana, a wrike alternativeAsana, a wrike alternative

However, once users open the app they’re going to find many hurdles to clear before they can even get started. That’s because Asana has a steep learning curve. Once you’ve figured out how to use the software then there’s another hurdle, more like a wall: you can only assign a task to one person. That’s supposed to avoid confusion but will frustrate teams with more than one person working on the same task. There’s also no time tracking, which is sure to have many looking for another Wrike alternative.


  • Premium plan: $10.99/user/month, billed annually
  • Business plan: $24.99/user/month, billed annually

Quick Facts

  • Asana has a 30-day free trial
  • Asana has a mobile project management app for Android and iOS

7. TrelloTrello logo, one of the best Wrike alternativesTrello logo, one of the best Wrike alternatives

  • Best Wrike alternative for kanban boards
  • Works well on a variety of platforms
  • Easy to add new members

Trello is a Wrike alternative that bases its software on kanban boards for visualizing workflow. It uses real-time data to keep everyone working on the most current information. The design works well on a variety of platforms and it’s easy to add new members to the software. Another plus is that there are email notifications that foster collaboration. Kanban boards tend to be intuitive and Trello is a user-friendly interface, which is going to be positive.

Trello, one of the best Wrike alternativesTrello, one of the best Wrike alternatives

On the other hand, there are limited advantages. No Gantt charts, time tracking and reporting without third-party apps. But why spend more for features that are already installed in other Wrike alternatives? It’s also not great in terms of scalability, which will turn off larger organizations and teams. There’s not much customization and users have complained about security, which again is going to be a deal-breaker for larger companies. If you’re not a technical person, this app will also take a bit of time to learn and master.


  • Standard: $5/user/month, billed annually
  • Premium: $10/user/month, billed annually
  • Enterprise: $17.50/user/month, billed annually

Quick Facts

  • Trello has a 14-day free trial
  • Trello has a mobile project management app for Android and iOS

8. JiraJira, one of the best Wrike alternativesJira, one of the best Wrike alternatives

  • Best Wrike alternative for software development
  • Developers prefer this app
  • Good agile project management

Jira is a Wrike alternative that lets you chart ideas and communicate them with your team with roadmap features. From that larger plan, you can then assign individual tasks to your team members. It’s built for agile project management, with burndown charts and other reports, plus team management features to monitor your team’s workload. It integrates easily with most of the more popular third-party apps. It’s preferred by developers, but managers, project managers and engineers use it to run their projects.

Jira, one of the best Wrike alternatives for software developmentJira, one of the best Wrike alternatives for software development

Users have complained about using the mobile tool, which they say is inferior to the web version of the product. While there are many integrations with Jira, they’re not easy and it’s a time-consuming process. You can generate reports, but not download them. There are workarounds but the results deliver poor resolution. To keep the app moving quickly, you can’t upload anything more than 10MB. The layout is a bit confusing and configuration is possible but confusing.


  • Standard: about $77.50/month
  • Premium: about $152.50/month

Quick Facts

  • Jira has a 7-day free trial
  • Jira has a mobile project management app for Android and iOS

9. KantataKantata, one of the best Wrike alternativesKantata, one of the best Wrike alternatives

  • Best Wrike alternative for resource management
  • Strong task management features
  • Time and expense tracking

Kantata streamlines processes and offers project management and team collaboration features such as other Wrike alternatives. Some of the key features that put this software on our list are its task management tools, file sharing, Gantt charts, time and expense tracking and utilization reporting. They even have a project template marketplace to choose the right template for your project plan.

Kantata is a good wrike alternativeKantata is a good wrike alternative

That said, it’s one of the more expensive Wrike alternatives we’ve ranked. That can be a deficit for small businesses that don’t have the budget to support such a cost. There’s also no mobile app, though its website has been optimized for mobile viewers. One of the biggest missing pieces is that there’s no chat app or available communication tools, making it a deal-breaker for anyone working with remote teams.


  • Enter your company info to see custom pricing

Quick Facts

  • Kantata doesn’t offer a free trial
  • Kantata doesn’t have a mobile project planning app

10. ProofHubProofhub, one of the best wrike alternatives for work managementProofhub, one of the best wrike alternatives for work management

  • Best Wrike alternative for large teams
  • Fosters collaboration with chat
  • Has Gantt charts, time tracking and reporting

Like most of the Wrike alternatives we’ve ranked, ProofHub acts as your one-stop shop for all of your project management needs. They offer a chat feature to foster better team collaboration in addition to announcements to keep everyone on the same page. ProofHub users can utilize Gantt charts to plan projects as well as workflows, time tracking and reports to make sure milestones are hit.

Proofhub's tools are a good wrike alternativeProofhub's tools are a good wrike alternative

That said, there’s one big omission which is a lack of budgeting tools. There are also no resource management tools, either. Users can, however, integrate ProofHub with accounting software for an added expense. The interface isn’t very intuitive and users have complained that pages often load slowly.


  • ProofHub has a flat pricing fee of $89 per month or $45 with limited features, billed annually

Quick Facts

  • ProofHub has a 14-day free trial
  • ProofHub has a mobile app for Android and iOS

11. FlowFlow Logo, one of the best Wrike alternatives for team collaborationFlow Logo, one of the best Wrike alternatives for team collaboration

  • Best Wrike alternative for team accountability
  • Multiple project views
  • Flag tasks and add notes

If you’re looking for a lighter Wrike alternative, consider Flow. Like its name, Flow focuses on task management and team collaboration, helping teams move through tasks and focus on what’s important. There are task and subtask management features, a project dashboard, kanban boards and a list view, so teams can manage their work how they’re most comfortable. Unlike Wrike, Flow allows users to flag tasks and add notes. But considering it’s all about flow and ease of use, Flow has a surprisingly poor user interface.

Flow, an easy-to-use wrike alternativeFlow, an easy-to-use wrike alternative

There are many layers of tabs and users can get lost in them quickly. It tracks your tasks, but this is only one arm of project management. The platform isn’t very flexible considering how lightweight it is. While there’s a mobile app, it’s not ideal for big teams. That being said, the simplicity in design can lead to wider adoption across your organization. If you’re looking for a task management tool that’s not as complex as other Wrike alternatives, Flow might be a good fit for you.


  • Basic: $6/user/month, billed annually
  • Plus: $8/user/month, billed annually
  • Pro: $10/user/month, billed annually

Quick Facts

  • Flow has a 30-day free trial
  • Flow has a mobile project management app for Android and iOS

12. nTasknTask, one of the best Wrike alternatives for task managementnTask, one of the best Wrike alternatives for task management

  • Best Wrike alternative for task tracking
  • Multilingual support
  • High-level dashboard

As a Wrike alternative, nTask focuses on task management, streamlining complex workflows and organization to manage tasks more effectively. There’s multilingual support which makes it attractive on the global stage. In terms of task management, you can assign, set recurring tasks, create progress reports, share and attach files and collaborate. There’s also a dashboard for high-level project views.

ntask a wrike alternative that focuses on task managementntask a wrike alternative that focuses on task management

However, if you’re working with large teams, this likely isn’t the Wrike alternative for you as it’s not well-suited for teams with over 50 members. While there are reporting features, they could be more robust. The software’s support team isn’t as attentive as users would prefer. Some users complain about it being hard to use, especially when it comes to adding documents and photos.


  • Premium: $3/user/month, billed annually
  • Business: $8/user/month, billed annually

Quick Facts

  • nTask offers a 14-day free trial
  • nTask has a mobile project management app for Android and iOS

The Best Wrike Alternative Is Clear

You’ve seen the top 12 Wrike alternatives listed in descending order. It’s clear that ProjectManager has more of what makes Wrike popular and leaves the other Wrike alternatives in the rearview mirror. Get ProjectManager today for free and get even more features, such as risk management, task management and resource management features that will help you deliver successful projects.

ProjectManager is the best Wrike alternative for project management. Our online project management software does everything Wrike does and more. Our dashboard metrics give you a clearer picture of your project’s progress. Resource management is more robust. Budgets stay on track with real-time monitoring of costs. That’s just the beginning. We have the best project management features such as online Gantt charts to plan, time tracking, task management and project portfolio management. Get started today for free.

Related Posts

Monday.com Gantt Chart: How to Make a Gantt Chart With Monday.com

PM Articles by ProjectManager.com. 

If you’re working in project management, then you know about Monday.com. You’re probably getting a ton of online ads. The company has invested a ton of money in its marketing to people working on projects. But is there a Monday Gantt chart?

Let’s take a look at this popular project management software and see if it delivers on one of the most essential project management tools. We’ll avoid the question as to why Monday.com named itself after the most hated day of the week and leave that for another time.

What Is Monday.com?

Monday.com bills itself as a work management tool. It says its purpose is to help teams and their organizations work more efficiently. It does this with features that track projects and create workflows, adding automation and visual data. But it’s mostly a collaborative tool.

This highly customizable tool is understandably popular as it has a forever-free plan. Its modern look appeals to a wide range of consumers, and there are tons of templates to create boards and automation. It integrates with a lot of other apps. Plus, there are bells and whistles that the general public will enjoy, such as animated fireworks when you complete a task, though this isn’t likely to sway project management professionals.

But what about that all-important project management tool, the Gantt chart? It’s not unusual that the free plan is limited to two users and doesn’t have a full suite of features. Less unusual is the confusing pricing plans. But for our discussion, it all boils down to one question.

Does Monday.com Have a Gantt Chart?

Why is the question of a Monday.com Gantt chart so critical? That’s because Gantt charts are the go-to tool for scheduling and planning a project. True, agile teams aren’t going to be interested in Gantt charts, but the upper management who oversees them will likely be working on Gantt charts.

Yes, Gantt charts are best for traditional, waterfall methodology, but with cross-functional teams, you need a full array of project tools at your disposal, not just task lists or kanban boards, as important as those tools are. Gantt charts are like spreadsheets with the right side populated with a timeline showing the entire project.

More than just a visual tool, they can link dependencies to avoid costly delays, set milestones to help with project tracking, organize tasks, resources, costs and much more. They break projects into phases to make them more manageable. Few project managers would want to run a project without one. So is there a Monday.com Gantt chart?

Short Answer: Yes, Monday.com Has Gantt Charts

There is a Monday.com Gantt chart. It can be used to track project plans, monitor your progress and measure against your objectives. Monday.com Gantt charts are good to manage any business or personal work. That’s true, in the most rudimentary way.

Long Answer: Monday.com Gantt Charts Lack Key Features for Project Management

If you’re using a Monday.com Gantt chart you’ll see what we mean when we say their project management tool is lacking. First, it’s not going to help manage larger, more complex projects. It just doesn’t have the features. A major weakness of Monday.com Gantt charts is that dependencies must be added by hand.

Another thing ProjectManager does that Monday.com doesn’t do is have roadmaps for program and portfolio management. If you’re managing more than one project you can see them all together on one project timeline. That helps you determine how you’ll share resources across many projects. We even have portfolio reporting features and a portfolio dashboard.

You’d want Monday.com Gantt charts to link to timesheets, real-time dashboards and other project views, but it doesn’t. There is so much that Monday.com Gantt charts can’t do it would be misleading to call it project management software. Being generous, it’s task management software, which is why the general public likes the app. It’s like a more powerful to-do list.

If you’re looking for a powerful Gantt chart that can help plan, manage and track projects in real time, you’re looking for ProjectManager. Our award-winning project management software has robust Gantt charts that do everything Monday Gantt charts do and so much more. It’s easy to drag and drop all four types of task dependencies, you can filter for the critical path and set a baseline to track project variance in real time. That data is shared across the app, such as in real-time dashboards, timesheets, workload charts and much more. Get started with ProjectManager today for free.

ProjectManager's Gantt chartProjectManager's Gantt chart
ProjectManager has Gantt charts that put Monday Gantt charts to shame. Learn more

How To Make a Monday.com Gantt Chart Better With ProjectManager

If you’re stuck using Monday.com but want to experience the full range of what a Gantt chart can do, there’s a workaround that can free you from the constraints of a Monday.com Gantt chart. ProjectManager makes it easy to take your project from Monday.com and import it into our software, freeing you to use a Gantt chart the way it should be used.

To get started, visit ProjectManager and take our free 30-day trial. There’s no credit card needed. It’s completely free and you’ll get access not only to our free Gantt chart software, but also task management, risk management and resource management features, plus multiple project views, real-time dashboards, timesheets and many more valuable project management tools.

Export & Import Your Monday.com Projects

Pick the project from Monday.com that you want to export. Save it as a CSV or Excel file. Now it’s ready to be imported into ProjectManager.
ProjectManager's import popup

ProjectManager's import popup

Choose the Excel File

Log into ProjectManager and toggle to the Gantt chart where you’ll see an import button. Click it and a window will pop up that says “Import a Project.” Click “Select File” and find your Monday.com project and select it.

Select Options

Now that your Monday.com file is uploaded to ProjectManager, you’ll want to decide if this is going to be a new project or if you’d prefer to add it to an existing project. If you’re adding to an existing project, be sure to note whether to keep the existing data or delete it.

Import What Data?

The last step is to either import all the data from your Monday.com file or only the task list. Select the one you want to import and click next.

Create a Robust Monday.com Gantt Chart!

When you see the “Success!” window, that means you’re done. The Monday.com file has been imported and you’re ready to use a real Gantt chart in ProjectManager. Now you’ll see what a real Gantt chart can do. It’s packed with features and connects to the rest of your project management software.

ProjectManager successful import popupProjectManager successful import popup

How to Use Your Monday.com Gantt Chart in ProjectManager

Now let’s look at what ProjectManager can do when you use your Monday.com Gantt chart in our software. For one thing, our Gantt chart seamlessly integrates with the rest of our project tools. You can share the Gantt chart with your team and stakeholders, track progress and performance on real-time dashboards and even auto-fill timesheets.

But before we start showing off the features of the Gantt chart, let’s focus on what our Gantt chart can do. It’s a powerful tool unto itself, which is cheaper than the 40-percent price increase that Monday.com implemented in 2022. With our software, it’s easier to onboard and train your team and it has impressive reporting functionality. You can’t even link tasks between boards or add holidays to know your team’s availability. Here are some other noteworthy aspects of our Gantt charts.

Set Milestones for Your Progress

Milestones are important dates in your project and they show up on our Gantt chart as diamond icons. Simply point and click when you want them. They’re great to indicate important deliverables, such as delivering the project plan to the client for approval. Traditionally, they’re used to mark the end or the beginning of a project phase. This is helpful in that it allows you to track your progress and make sure you’re keeping to the schedule.

ProjectManager's Gantt chart with milestonesProjectManager's Gantt chart with milestones

Filter By Priority, Dependency and Tags

A big difference between Monday.com and ProjectManager is when you want to link task dependencies or work that can’t be done until another task is either started or finished. Our software makes it easy to link dependent tasks, Monday.com doesn’t. We also allow you to link all four types of dependencies. There are also customized tags, priority levels and more you can add to tasks to make them easier to find. Just filter the Gantt chart by what you want to see, such as the critical path in the screenshot below. It’s that easy.

ProjectManager's Gantt chart with critical path filteredProjectManager's Gantt chart with critical path filtered

Our Gantt Chart is All Yours

What a pleasure it is to use a Gantt chart that works with you instead of against you. Monday.com’s Gantt charts are one in a long line of difficult Gantt charts. Remember, people used to make these by hand. Even on a spreadsheet, they’re complicated and aggravating to edit and almost impossible to share. You don’t want multiple copies with different data floating around.

ProjectManager's Gantt chartProjectManager's Gantt chart

You’ll find none of those roadblocks when you plan, manage and track your project on our software. Our Gantt chart is easy to share. You can edit by simply dragging and dropping. All associated tasks automatically update to reflect the change. You can add color to make it easier to see the different project phases and much more.

Get Notified of Progress

Because our software is online, our Gantt chart always has up-to-date information that is shared across our multiple project views. You’re always working on the same page as your teammates, whether they’re in the next office or next time zone. You can share files, comments and more to foster collaboration. For example, anytime the Gantt is changed or a task is commented on, you’re instantly notified by email and there’s even an in-app alert so you don’t have to leave the tool.

ProjectManager's Gantt chart with notificationsProjectManager's Gantt chart with notifications

Other Project Management Features From ProjectManager

Now that you’re loving our Gantt chart, why not take a look around the software and see what else we have to offer? You can set availability when you onboard your team to make assignments easier, balance the team’s workload to keep them working at capacity, boost productivity and so much more.

Kanban Boards

While project managers love Gantt charts, project teams don’t need that level of engagement with the project. They want to do their tasks, which is why we have multiple project views, such as task lists, calendars and the visual workflow tool of a kanban board. The kanban board lets teams manage their backlog and plan sprints together, while project managers get visibility into their work and can reallocate resources to remove roadblocks to keep the team working uninterrupted.

ProjectManager's kanban boardProjectManager's kanban board

Real-Time Dashboard

We’ve talked a little about the real-time dashboard, which automatically collects live project data and displays it on easy-to-read graphs and charts. It gives you a high-level overview of the project’s progress and performance across a number of key metrics, such cost, time and much more. Most project management software makes you build your own dashboard, which takes time away from managing the project. Not our software. ProjectManager has a dashboard that’s ready to go whenever you toggle over to view it.

ProjectManager's dashboardProjectManager's dashboard

Team Management

Resource management is another key feature of our software. As we noted, we make it easy to onboard your team, define their skills and chart their availability, including PTO, vacation and global holidays for distributed teams. Once you’ve assigned the team, toggle over to the team page and get an overview of everyone on the team and see what they’re working on. To go deeper, there’s a workload chart where you can reallocate your team’s resources to keep them balanced and secure timesheets to see how far they’ve gone in completing their tasks.

ProjectManager's team pageProjectManager's team page

ProjectManager has more powerful Gantt charts than Monday.com. Our Gantt charts do more, do it better and do it seamlessly with our other project management features. If you need a Gantt chart, but also kanban boards, task lists, calendars and more you’ve come to the right software solution. Add to that our robust risk management, task management and resource management features and we give you the control you need to deliver successful projects. Get started with ProjectManager today for free.

Related Posts

Beyond Traditional Metrics: Why Adaptive KPIs are the Future of Project Management

PM Articles by Project Times. 

In a recent engagement with a government client, I came across an intriguing yet common conundrum regarding the enforcement of KPIs. Individual projects within their diverse portfolio were flagged ‘red’, signalling they were off course, yet the overall portfolio surprisingly reflected a ‘green’ status, implying smooth operations. This stark inconsistency, compounded by disagreements over the statuses of individual projects, underlined the critical need for a more sophisticated, adaptive approach to KPIs in project management.


Conventional KPIs in the realm of project management often bear resemblance to religious texts – unwavering and unchanging, even in the face of shifting project dynamics. This rigid constancy, while providing a sense of stability, may distort perceptions of project performance and overlook potential avenues for improvement. In this article, we delve deeper into these inherent limitations of traditional KPIs and champion a more agile, adaptive approach, one that aligns better with the fluid and ever evolving and unique nature of today’s project landscapes.

Let’s scrutinize the limitations of traditional KPIs. These conventional metrics, while offering a valuable framework, do exhibit certain drawbacks. They possess an inflexible character, condense the complexities of project statuses into a simplistic ‘traffic light’ system, and enforce a generic approach that overlooks the distinctive nuances of individual projects. Consequently, a sudden transition from ‘green’ to ‘amber’ might not truthfully represent a project’s actual condition. Moreover, ignoring key project-specific factors such as the project team’s experience and composition, and other complexities could thwart optimally project outcomes.

Envisioning a New Approach to KPIs

Considering these constraints, we advocate for a more adaptable approach to KPIs. KPIs should serve as flexible signposts, offering nuanced insights and evolving in response to dynamic project conditions. A ‘spectrum’ system could replace the binary ‘traffic light’ system to better encapsulate the subtle gradations between ‘good’ and ‘caution’, thereby enabling a more accurate snapshot of the project’s health and fostering tailored problem-solving and decision-making strategies.

Let’s illustrate this ‘spectrum’ grading: ‘Deep Green’ signifies a project operating ahead of schedule; ‘Light Green’ and ‘Yellow’ mark minor deviations that are manageable with slight adjustments; ‘Orange’ indicates a substantial deviation demanding dedicated intervention; ‘Red’ denotes a severe delay necessitating immediate action. This refined system facilitates proactive responses to project status changes and fosters a culture of continuous improvement.

KPI thresholds should be malleable, adapting to the unique context of each project and evolving in sync with the project’s progress to spur continuous learning and strategic adjustments. Influential variables, such as the project manager’s experience, sponsor involvement, project type, size, duration and team skillset, ought to be incorporated into the KPI thresholds to ensure a more precise and meaningful assessment of project performance.

Finally, KPIs should be viewed as living, evolving mechanisms, mirroring the project’s trajectory. This dynamic perspective fosters a culture of continuous learning, encourages periodic strategy adjustments, and aligns more effectively with the complex and fast-paced realities of modern project landscapes.


Advantages and Challenges of an Adaptive Approach

Adopting an adaptive approach to KPIs unveils several compelling benefits. Primarily, this method fosters a responsive and agile project management environment, enabling teams to adeptly navigate changes and maintain momentum towards their objectives. By embracing flexibility, teams are encouraged to continually learn, refine their strategies, and progressively improve. This learning culture not only nurtures individual and collective growth but also enhances the potential for delivering value and achieving project goals.

However, implementing an adaptive approach is not without challenges. Critics may argue that tailoring KPIs for each project is a burdensome task, especially for organizations handling a vast number of projects. Indeed, creating individual KPIs for each project may seem daunting and resource intensive. However, this concern often underscores a deeper issue of mass governance in project management, where projects are overseen in a bulk, uniform manner, neglecting their unique characteristics.

Counterarguments and Solutions

To address these concerns, it’s important to emphasize that while individualizing KPIs requires upfront effort, the long-term benefits—enhanced accuracy, improved decision-making, and ultimately, successful projects—outweigh the initial investment. It’s about quality over quantity, shifting the focus from managing a large volume of projects to truly understanding and effectively managing each one.

Technology can also play a pivotal role in facilitating this adaptive approach. Advanced project management tools and software can automate the process of defining and adjusting KPIs, making it a less labour-intensive and more streamlined process. Organizations can gradually introduce adaptive KPIs. Starting with pilot projects could allow teams to gain confidence and experience with the approach and help refine the process before wider implementation. This gradual integration can help alleviate concerns and demonstrate the efficacy of adaptive KPIs.

Ultimately, transitioning to an adaptive KPI approach should be a thoughtful, well-planned process, considering the unique needs and capabilities of each organization. By doing so, we can address the legitimate challenges posed, while still harnessing the substantial benefits of this innovative approach.


In our rapidly changing project environment, the steadfast, conventional KPIs may no longer suffice. It is high time we welcome a shift towards an adaptive KPI approach, one that truly echoes the unique fabric of each project, appreciates the diverse shades of project progress, and continuously evolves in tandem with the project’s trajectory. This approach not only amplifies our project management effectiveness but also ensures that our success metrics are as diverse, resilient, and forward-thinking as the projects we orchestrate. By advocating this change, we lay the groundwork for a more realistic, precise, and insightful method of tracking project performance, fostering an environment that champions continuous learning, innovation, and strategic flexibility. With this, we can confidently navigate the complex waters of project management, steering our projects towards their destined success, one adaptive KPI at a time.

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General Conditions in Construction: Definitions & Best Practices

PM Articles by ProjectManager.com. 

The general contractor is responsible for all the construction contracting activities that occur on a construction site. These professional services range from supervising the site and the work being done to ensuring that work is carried out safely. These general conditions in construction are varied and costly.

If you’re a general contractor working in construction project management, you’ll need to know about general conditions. To understand what general conditions are, we’ll define the term as it relates to construction and why the term is important. We’ll go further, explaining how to estimate general condition costs and how general conditions compare to construction specifications and general requirements.

What Are General Conditions In Construction?

General conditions in construction mean something a bit different depending on where you look. You’ll find general conditions in the project contract, the specifications and the project costs. To understand general conditions in construction, we need to define them as it applies to each place in the construction project. But first, general conditions are more common in commercial construction because residential hasn’t adopted the same standards used in commercial construction.

General conditions in a construction project contract are the terms decided between the owner, the constructor, and, in some cases, the architect. But it also includes dates, such as when the project is set to start and the date on which it’ll be finished. General conditions also apply to how delays will be handled, the terms for payment, change orders and how contractual disputes will be resolved.

Regarding specifications, general conditions are the information regarding the project administration roles, responsibilities and processes. That is, setting up meetings, how change orders are handled, etc. The general conditions in this place are specific to the project. This differs from general requirements, which also deal with specifications. We’ll get to that later.

Then there are the project costs, in which general conditions offer infrastructure and resources for the general contractor and trade subcontractors to complete all project phases. These are temporary costs or soft costs that are necessary for the construction site and for the construction to be done correctly. General conditions are an important part of the construction project contract; it defines what’s needed for the project to be completed to the satisfaction of the owner when it’s turned over to them.

Project management software can help ensure that all general conditions in your commercial construction project are included in the project plan. ProjectManager is award-winning project management software with powerful Gantt charts that help you plan, manage and track your construction project in real time. You can include all the activities related to the construction general conditions on the Gantt chart, linking dependencies to avoid delays and filtering for the critical path to identify essential tasks to help you deliver the contracted project to the owner to their satisfaction. Get started with ProjectManager today for free.

ProjectManager's Gantt chartProjectManager's Gantt chart
ProjectManager has Gantt charts to plan your general conditions and track them in real time. Learn more

Why Are General Conditions Important In Construction?

General conditions are those resources and items that won’t be part of the completed project, but that doesn’t mean they’re unimportant. General conditions can include everything from fencing to signage. Imagine a construction project without either. It’d be impossible to run a safe construction site if you couldn’t keep people out of harm’s way.

There’s also the fact that the roles and responsibilities of those involved in the construction project are defined in the general conditions. Without general conditions, contracting parties would have no clear duties or privileges. The project would have no governance and work would be slow and expensive if it was able to be done.

The costs related to the infrastructure that allows the project to be constructed are outlined in the general conditions. The scaffolding and other temporary structures cost money. There are also supervisors and dumpsters employed to oversee the work and remove garbage; all these things cost money. The general conditions estimate the cost of the infrastructure.

How to Estimate General Conditions Costs

Let’s take a moment to understand how general condition costs are estimated. When trying to accurately estimate general condition costs, you’ll first want to look at historical data. Look at past projects and what the general conditions costs were then. If the new construction project is similar, then you’ll have a decent idea of what the costs will be, though you should factor in inflation.

But general contractors don’t always have a previous construction project by which to measure the one they’re about to initiate. Or sometimes, the new project is so different from previous projects that any comparison between the two is impossible and misleading. In these cases, you’ll want to look at every general condition item and estimate their cost. This also means you’ll have to know the duration of the project. If a site supervisor makes a certain amount an hour, that’ll then have to be multiplied by the hours they’ll work. However, some general conditions, like dumpster costs, are by the load, so they’ll be estimated more broadly.

Related: Best Construction Estimating Software of 2023 for Managing Projects

Therefore, historical data, scheduling and individual general condition costs (service, equipment and materials used by general contractors to ensure the project meets the contract and schedule agreement) are all important factors in making an accurate estimate. Again, it’s ideal to base your estimates on previous projects and the general conditions cost for them, but if that data isn’t available, you’ll need to list the items that are general conditions and determine their cost and duration to develop an accurate estimate.

General Conditions vs. Construction Specifications

General conditions are often confused with other construction project management terms such as construction specifications. It’s understandable why this might happen, but it’s important to be clear in the distinction between the two to avoid confusion and miscommunication.

Construction specifications detail the work and workmanship in a construction project. These are defined during the design phase and they’re part of the formal process. They’re collected on a written document that describes the scope of the work, including the materials that’ll be used, how the construction will be installed and the quality of that work. This will be included in the construction contract, with drawings to visualize the work.

This differs from general conditions, which are the services, equipment and materials that are used to make sure the work specified in the construction specifications is done correctly and on schedule. Construction specifications direct the work done on a construction site, while general conditions are what’s related to that work, such as site management, project management, track removal, etc.

General Conditions vs. General Requirements

Again, general conditions and general requirements are another set of construction terms that are often confused or misunderstood. To reiterate, those involved in the management of the project, such as project executives, superintendents, project managers, engineers and field office staff are considered general conditions. This also includes all items that are required to support the management staff, such as supplies, telecommunications, the field office, etc.

General requirements are specific protocols for the administrative programs that are associated with the project. This includes submittals, scheduling requirements, LEED, payment apps, permitting, inspection, daily logs, RFIs, progress meetings and meeting minutes. You can say that general requirements collect those items that don’t apply directly to construction. Their costs are spread over the entire project.

Both general conditions and general requirements are part of a bid in which the general contractor has the most control when they put together a proposal. Getting the whole team involved in these two areas will set up the project for success.

Free Construction Templates

If you need help with your project proposal, you can download a free template from our site. In fact, we have dozens of project management templates for Excel and Word that cover every phase of a project. Here are a few that focus on construction.

Construction Proposal Template

General conditions will play into your construction project proposal. You can make your bid competitive and profitable by outlining the details that’ll allow your client to achieve their goals with our free construction proposal template for Word.

Construction Estimate Template

Our free construction estimate template for Excel ensures that you make a profit by having an accurate estimate of the project’s costs. With our free template, you can forecast your labor costs, material costs and profit margin to make sure your bid is financially sound.

Construction Schedule Template

You made accurate estimates of the construction costs and your bid was accepted. Now you need our free construction schedule template to get your ducks in a row. Organize your tasks on a Gantt chart, link dependencies, filter for the critical path and set a baseline to track your progress in real time.

ProjectManager Helps Track Construction General Conditions

Templates are great, but they’re static documents. A construction project is anything but static. ProjectManager is award-winning project management software that helps general contractors plan, manage and track their construction work in real time. You can plan your general conditions, use our unlimited file storage to keep your documents in one place and utilize collaborative features to share files and connect teams on the job site, in the office and everywhere in between.

Track General Conditions With Real-Time Dashboards

To make sure you don’t suffer cost overruns during the project, you need to closely monitor your costs, time and more. Our real-time dashboards automatically collect project data and then display them in easy-to-read graphs and charts showing metrics for live costs, time, workload and much more. Unlike lightweight software, there’s no time-consuming configuration required. Just toggle over to the dashboard whenever you want a high-level view of the project.

ProjectManager's dashboardProjectManager's dashboard
Use Customizable Reports to Get Deeper Into the Data

Dashboards are a great tool, but when you need more information, use our reporting features. There are reports on timesheets, variance and, of course, project status. All the reports can be filtered to show only the data you want to see. You can also share the reports in a variety of formats to keep the project owner updated on progress, whether they want to get a PDF attachment by email or a printout for a one-on-one presentation.

ProjectManager's timesheet report filterProjectManager's timesheet report filter

Construction is a collaborative effort. Our software keeps you connected with construction project owners, architects, managers, general contractors and subcontractors with real-time communications. There are even email and in-app alerts to keep you notified of comments and shared files. You’ll always know the status of your general conditions with our tool.

ProjectManager is online project management software that allows construction professionals to plan, manage and track their projects in real time. Get the risk management, task management and resource management tools you need to stay productive and complete your projects on time and within budget. Get started with ProjectManager today for free.

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The Courage to Try Something Old – Use Cases

PM Articles by Project Times. 


There are many articles about project management trends for 2023. Among the common threads are a focus on AI and more automated PM tools. There are also contradictory trends like workers returning to the office or continuing to work from home. What I find most interesting, though, is that many of the trends have been around for years—like change management, agile and hybrid development methods, and focusing on benefits.[i] Does that mean that these old horses are not really trends? Not at all. It means that even when these techniques are out of favor, they are needed to successfully manage our projects.

One “old” trend I was happy to see was entitled Use Cases Are Back.[ii] Not that they’ve ever gone away. They’ve had different formats and names, like the Given, When, Then format, but the thought processes needed to develop a use case model have always been required.

To review, a use case is a model that describes how stakeholders want to use pretty much anything that’s being built, like a car, an elevator, a phone app, or a change to an existing system. But defining them is not easy. We can’t just ask our stakeholders how they would like to use a microwave or what functionality is needed in a sales app. We need to ask the right questions. And a use case model is a great tool for getting at those requirements.

A use case model, like almost all models, has both a graphical and textual component.[iii] The first component, a use case diagram, is a picture of the how the stakeholders will interact with what’s being developed. It identifies all stakeholder groups who will use the end product and how they want to use it. It also describes all the systems and other components needed to make it work. It becomes a picture of all the people and technical components, as well as all the functionality needed to make it useable. And it’s a great picture of the scope of the effort.

Some PMs and BAs have trouble getting started, so I have developed 5 business questions that can provide a jumpstart in the creation of a use case diagram.

Use Case Diagram Questions

  1. What’s being built? It’s usually called a system, but we can call it whatever we want. Examples include a new car, a change to an order system, and kitchen cabinets.
  2. Who are the stakeholders who will use this system? These are often called actors, such as an auto service consultant, a consumer, and cabinet designer.
  3. How do these stakeholders want to use the system? What functionality do they need? These are the use cases themselves. They are stated as high-level processes, like Start Car, Order Product, Measure Cabinets.
  4. What other systems or components will interact directly with the system? These are also commonly called actors, like Ignition system, Replenishment system, and Cabinet Delivery Schedule system.
  5. How will the actors and the system talk to each other? These eventually become the user interfaces that allow the system to recognize what the actor wants to do. The driver sends some signal to the Start Car use case. A consumer enters an item into Order Product use case. A cabinet designer enters measurements into a design cabinet use case.

The textual component is known as a use case narrative or scenario. It describes the process steps which detail the interaction between the stakeholders and what’s being built.


For example, how do we start the car? Does the driver put a key into the ignition? Press a button? Does the car start when the car phone app is connected and the driver opens the door? Something else? There is no one right answer. But the questions below will help our stakeholders go through the required thought processes.

Use Case Scenario Questions:

  1. How do I know where to begin? Preconditions provide the answer. They tell us where to begin by describing what has already occurred. In our example, do I already have my keys? Have I already unlocked the car? Adjusted the mirrors? More preconditions mean that the use case scenario will be shorter and there will be fewer different paths. For example, if a precondition is that I have my keys, we don’t need to document what happens when I’ve lost my keys in this scenario.
  2. How do I know when I’m done? These are the postconditions. We stop when we reach these conditions. The pre and post conditions form the scope of the use case because they define what’s in and out of each one.
  3. What is the most common way of getting from the pre to the post condition? This is the “happy path.” There are no decisions in this path, such as what happens if the car won’t start.
  4. What are other ways of getting from the pre to the postcondition? These are the alternate paths. The car starts, but it takes three tries.
  5. What prevents us from getting to the postcondition? These are the exception paths, like when the battery is dead.

Use case models are extremely useful for getting the requirements of the interaction between stakeholders and what’s being built. There are other ways of getting them, but the structure of the use case can help us focus on what questions to ask and ultimately saves time and frustration.

[i] https://www.theprojectgroup.com/blog/en/project-management-trends/; https://www.replicon.com/blog/project-management-trends/ are two examples.
[ii] https://www.projecttimes.com/articles/top-business-trends-to-watch-for-in-2023/
[iii] I’m not including a use case diagram because of the many different conventions used. What’s important are the thought processes, not the conventions.

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Elizabeth Larson

Elizabeth Larson, PMP, CBAP, CSM, PMI-PBA is a consultant and advisor for Watermark Learning/Project Management Academy, and has over 35 years of experience in project management and business analysis. Elizabeth’s speaking history includes keynotes and presentations for national and international conferences on five continents. Elizabeth has co-authored five books and chapters published in four additional books, as well as articles that appear regularly in BA Times and Project Times. Elizabeth was a lead author/expert reviewer on all editions of the BABOK® Guide, as well as several of the PMI standards. Elizabeth enjoys traveling, hiking, reading, theater, and spending time with her 6 grandsons and 1 granddaughter.

Microsoft Project Viewer – How to View & Edit MPP Files Online

PM Articles by ProjectManager.com. 

A Microsoft Project plan file, or an MPP file, is a file format that’s exclusive to Microsoft Project. This means users need to purchase Microsoft Project to open them. Otherwise, using and more importantly, sharing MS Project files, will cause problems. However, you can avoid those hurdles if you have a Microsoft Project viewer to view and edit MPP files.

What Is a Microsoft Project Viewer?

A Microsoft Project viewer, also known as an MPP viewer, is software that allows project managers, stakeholders and teams to open, share, print and edit MPP files without a Microsoft Project license. It’s a lifesaver for anyone using or receiving Microsoft Project files because of the many obstacles that MS Project presents.

ProjectManager is more than just a Microsoft Project viewer, it’s online project management software that allows you to open, print, share and edit MPP files online. More importantly, ProjectManager allows you to use all the project management features you expect from Microsoft Project such as Gantt charts, kanban boards, project calendars and more. Get started today for free.

ProjectManager has all of the powerful features you’d expect from Microsoft Project, including Gantt charts. Learn more

Why Should You Use a Microsoft Project Viewer?

There are several reasons why Microsoft Project might not be the best project management tool for some organizations, which causes project managers to look for Microsoft Project alternatives, such as MPP viewers. Here are some of them.

Microsoft Project Is Expensive

The price point is one of the difficulties that one encounters immediately with MS Project. Microsoft Project requires a monthly subscription that starts at $10/month/user, but you don’t get a lot of features with it. The more advanced cloud-based subscription will set you back $55 per month/user. The on-premise Microsoft Project solution is even pricier: the price range is $679.99 for Project Standard 2021 to over $1,129.99 for the Project Professional 2021 edition.

Microsoft Project Is Hard to Use

While the new Microsoft Project Online adds more flexibility to the product and is certainly an improvement over the desktop version, the learning curve is still steep. It’s not a user-friendly interface and sharing files is not easy. Microsoft offers its Sharepoint as a means to share files, but even their solution is expensive and not easy to use. Add to that the lack of a real-time dashboard, and you can see why people are motivated to find an alternative.

Microsoft Project Is Not Available for Mac Users

For those projects that are being managed on a Mac OS device, the problems are much worse. Microsoft Project doesn’t support Apple products. That ignores huge industries, such as publishing and design.

You can avoid these drawbacks by using a Microsoft Project viewer. Microsoft Project viewers are a good substitute for all versions of MS Project, including Microsoft Project Online, as most of them let you open MPP files online.

Key Features of a Microsoft Project Viewer

While each Microsoft Project viewer has different features and unique functionality, most Microsoft Project viewers allow you and your team to:

  • Open MPP files: View Microsoft Project files online.
  • Share Microsoft Project files: MPP viewers let you export MPP files as Excel or CSV files which lets you share them with non-MS Project license holders.
  • Print MPP files: Most MPP viewers allow you to print the content of your Microsoft Project files.

However, while they’re helpful, it’s important to understand that Microsoft Project viewers aren’t project management software like Microsoft Project and therefore might lack important project management tools. If you want the closest experience to Microsoft Project, you can try ProjectManager, online project management software that lets you use advanced project management features to:

  • Manage MPP files online using project management tools such as Gantt charts, kanban boards, project dashboards and timesheets.
  • Create project schedules and use project tracking tools.
  • Find the critical path of your projects.
  • Collaborate with your team online.
  • View real-time project dashboard data.
  • Export updated data as XML back into MS Project.

Let’s go over the process of using ProjectManager as an advanced Microsoft Project viewer and editor.

How to Use ProjectManager as a Microsoft Project Viewer

With ProjectManager, you can import and export Microsoft Project files without losing any data thanks to its online storage. Plus, you can view and edit MPP files before exporting your changes and sharing them with your team members. Best of all, our MPP viewer works on both Windows and Mac computers without requiring any downloads.

1. Start a Free 30-Day Trial

To view and edit MS Project files on your computer (Windows or Mac), you must first start your free 30-day trial. Choose any plan you like, as they’re all compatible with Microsoft Project, and each plan lets you seamlessly import, export, view and edit MPP files. Once you’ve selected a plan, ProjectManager is free for 30 days and can be canceled at any time—no strings attached!

Follow the walkthrough below to view and edit your MPP files in ProjectManager.

importing Microsoft Project files to use ProjectManager as a Microsoft project viewerimporting Microsoft Project files to use ProjectManager as a Microsoft project viewer

2. Use the Gantt Chart to Import Your MPP File

Launch the Gantt chart tool and click on the import button. You can find it on the top right of your screen. It’s the one with the symbol that looks like a box with an arrow piercing it on top. Once you import your file, you can use ProjectManager as an online MPP file viewer and editor and use all its project management features to edit your Microsoft Project plan.

Import, view and edit Microsoft Project MPP files with ProjectManagerImport, view and edit Microsoft Project MPP files with ProjectManager

3. Get Your MPP File

Find the MPP file you want to work on. A popup window will ask which project file you wish to import. Once you’ve selected it, hit next. Make sure your file has the right MPP file extension.

4. Pick Your Options

Follow the choices listed on the new popup menu. You can now add the imported MS project file to an existing project or open it as a new one, as well as replace the data or keep it.

5. Import the MPP File into Our Microsoft Project Viewer

Choose how you want to import the Microsoft Project file. You can get all the data from it or just the task list. It’s up to you. Choose whichever option gives you more options when it comes to efficiently viewing and editing your MPP file.

Import, view and edit Microsoft Project MPP files using ProjectManagerImport, view and edit Microsoft Project MPP files using ProjectManager

6. Get Started Viewing & Editing Your MPP File!

See that window that says success? That means you’ve imported the file and now you can share it, edit it and, if you want, export it back to MS Project, without any hassles. Your project will appear on the Gantt chart at first, but you can manage it in any of the project views available on our online platform. It’s Microsoft Project integration done right.

View and Edit MPP Files in Our Online Gantt ChartView and Edit MPP Files in Our Online Gantt Chart

3 Microsoft Project Viewers With Free & Paid Plans

If you’re just looking for a Microsoft Project viewer and nothing else, there are some lightweight options that might interest you. All work as a free Microsoft Project viewer, even on Mac, and some can be found in the Microsoft Store.

These tools might not have the features that project managers need, such as Gantt charts, cloud storage, etc., but they’ll act as an online MPP viewer and make those stubborn MPP files workable for iOS, Android and Windows users alike.

1. Project Plan 365

ProjectPlan 365 is a Microsoft Project viewer that can open and save Microsoft Project files. It imports and exports seamlessly to collaborate with MS Project. It works with Mac and has a cloud interface to work online or a downloadable version for your macOS devices. A benefit for Microsoft Project users is that this free MPP viewer has a familiar feel to that tool.

Users have complained that the software crashes, especially if charts are more complicated. Another issue is that customers have complained of bugs, such as the tool doesn’t sync with Dropbox. While it promises a lot, such as Gantt charts, it doesn’t always deliver. When it does, the subscription price for the paid version is high.

2. Project Viewer 365

Project Viewer 365 is another lightweight Microsoft Project viewer. It allows users to view, read, share and print MPP files. It has cloud-based integration with Google Drive, One Drive, Dropbox and SharePoint. Pricing starts at $29.99 for one license, though there’s a free MPP viewer, and it works with PCs, Macs, and any web browser.

While this is a decent online MPP viewer, it’s nothing else. If you’re only using Microsoft Project, then this might be a fine workaround to view files with teams and vendors that would otherwise require the purchase of more MS Project licenses. However it’s so barebones and even with a free version, it’s not worth the money to have another app that does only one thing.

3. Seavus Project Viewer

Finally, there’s Seavus ProjectViewer, another MS Project viewer that supports all the views available on Microsoft Project and MS Project Professional, including graphical reports. Like the others on this list, the user interface mimics that of MS Project for ease of use. It even has Skype for Business integration and a task update collaboration add-in.

The trouble is, this is another expensive MPP viewer at $39 for a one-time user. There’s a free trial but that’s not going to help customers who need a long-term solution. As an MS Project viewer, you could do worse, but again, there are no other project management features. The idea of spending money on a product that does only one thing means you’ll eventually have a handful of expensive apps that can do but one thing when there are affordable alternatives that can view MPP files and much more.

If you’re looking for a powerful tool that has a free version and different subscription tiers to match your needs and not break your wallet, you’ll want an MS Project viewer such as ProjectManager. It not only views but edits and shares your MMP files. In fact, you might just give up Microsoft Project altogether.

Why ProjectManager Is the Best Online Microsoft Project Viewer

When you’ve imported your MS Project File into an online Microsoft Project viewer with the capacity to edit MPP files, like ProjectManager, you’re given free rein to work, whether you’re using Windows, Mac, iOS or Android devices. The Microsoft Project files are fully imported into your online MS Project viewer.

Now that you’re in the MPP file, there are different project views available to you when you work. Let’s take a look at some innovative ways to use an MS Project viewer with project management features, like ProjectManager, and see how this tool can help you work more efficiently.

1. Online Gantt Charts

When you import an MPP file to ProjectManager, the project plan and Gantt chart immediately populate online, preserving your custom columns and settings like color-coding, WBS and task dependencies, as well as importing resources and assignments. You can then immediately view your project plans online and manage them with your team once invited to the online project.

This includes collaborating with your team on tasks directly on the Gantt chart, which enables you to receive alerts when your team members have updated their tasks with comments or file attachments. You can also manage projects in a portfolio, create project groups and manage task dependencies across projects.

View Microsoft Project Gantt Charts with ProjectmanagerView Microsoft Project Gantt Charts with Projectmanager

2. Online Timesheets & Resource Management

When you import Microsoft Project plans online to ProjectManager, you get more than an MS Project viewer. You can manage your projects online, including managing resource time, costs and updates.

Since your resource data is imported, you can share the online project plans with your team and invite them to update timesheets. This is perfect for teams in the field; they can update tasks and timesheets anytime, anywhere, and you get email alerts when their timesheets are ready for approval.

3. Populate Real-Time Dashboards

When you import an MPP file into ProjectManager, for example, your real-time dashboard is instantly populated, showing you instant views of your project data. You might wonder, if you’ve never seen a real-time view of your project data, why you would need a project dashboard? The benefits are clear upon import. You can see at-a-glance:

  • Project health
  • Task status
  • Team workload status
  • Costs
  • And more

ProjectManager’s dashboard view, which shows six key metrics on a projectProjectManager’s dashboard view, which shows six key metrics on a project

With ProjectManager, your MPP files are super-powered. Now they can reflect real-time changes in your project. You can easily share documents that were too big to email. Import and export are a breeze, the viewer can do all the formatting for you, and best of all, your project data instantly populate your dashboard with colorful charts and graphs. Ready to try it? Sign up for a 30-day free trial now.

ProjectManager Is More Than a Microsoft Project Viewer: It’s an MPP File Editor

ProjectManager isn’t just a free MS project viewer. It’s a Microsoft Project alternative that can be used as an MPP file editor or a fully-featured project management software that gives you complete control over your projects. When you import and export MS Project plans, you want to have the ability to work on them and access project management features.

With data roundtripping, your imported data columns don’t have to be “mapped,” like in other project viewers. The data immediately and seamlessly is imported into the right places, so you can continue your project planning and scheduling right there online!

With an advanced MPP editor, you can:

  • Open MPP files
  • Manage MPP files online
  • View planned, baselines and WBS
  • See & update task dependencies
  • Merge resources & their rates
  • Merge assignments
  • Collaborate with your team online
  • View real-time dashboard data
  • Export updated data as XML into MS Project

Once your Microsoft Project files are seamlessly imported online, you can manage and share your projects 100% online, safely and securely, so you can collaborate with your team. Everything from MS Project transfers over, including formatting such as color coding.

Team members can update tasks on the Gantt and add attachments and comments. So you can continue planning in just a few clicks. Plus, if you need to export the data back to MS Project, you can simply click “export,” and it will open in MS Project with all the data updates intact. ProjectManager is also compatible with OneDrive, Google Drive, Dropbox, Outlook and more than 1,000 business apps.

Related: Microsoft Teams, Microsoft Planner

Microsoft Project Viewers FAQ

Microsoft Project is a very commonly used project management software but is not the best tool. That’s why there are many Microsoft Project viewer tools that have been developed for those who don’t want to use MS Project but still need to open and share MPP files. Here are some of the most frequently asked questions online about Microsoft Project viewers.

What is the best Microsoft Project viewer?

ProjectManager is the best Microsoft Project viewer. It’s an online project management software that lets you flawlessly import and edit MPP files.

Is there any Free Microsoft Project viewer?

Yes, there are several free MPP viewers available online, such as in the Microsoft Store, Google Play Store and Apple’s App Store.

Can you view MS Project files without MS Project?

Yes, you can use a Microsoft Project viewer, MPP file editor or better yet, project management software.

Can I edit MPP files with a Microsoft Project viewer?

No, Microsoft Project viewers don’t allow you to edit MPP files. With an MPP viewer, you can only read, share and print MPP files.

If you’re using Microsoft Project, then look for alternatives to help you share your work with your team and stakeholders. With an online Project viewer and online project management software tool like ProjectManager, you can do more than just view your files. You can seamlessly manage your MPP files online, update and collaborate on plans online, manage timesheets with your team, view real-time project data, and so much more. See for yourself with this free 30-day trial!

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Making a Construction Schedule: Construction Scheduling Basics

PM Articles by ProjectManager.com. 

Construction projects are notoriously difficult, and they’re known for encountering delays. They involve many moving parts, teams, equipment and materials, so your construction schedule should be thoroughly planned.

Tools that are embedded in construction project management software, such as Gantt charts and resource management, are key features to control the many phases of a construction product. But they just facilitate the process. The construction schedule is the backbone of any successful project management for construction.

What Is Construction Scheduling?

Construction scheduling organizes activities and their sequence in a construction project. It’s a project management process that acts as a blueprint for how the project will be executed. It not only organizes the activities and tasks but the overall timeframe for the project, including milestones. The construction project manager will also track its progress to make sure that the project is on schedule.

Other items included in a construction schedule include deliverables, resource management, asset allocation, tasks, dependent tasks, task duration and deadline, as well as the budget and related costs of all that work. But the construction schedule isn’t etched in stone. Project managers will review and revise throughout the project.

Yes, construction scheduling is time-consuming. You want to take all the steps, avoid shortcuts and work toward creating the most accurate schedule you can. The more time you put into the construction schedule, the fewer issues you’ll have when you execute the project plan, which is key to good construction project management.

What Is a Construction Schedule?

A construction schedule is a timeline for every task and event in a construction project. The construction schedule is a fundamental part of the project planning phase, as it also defines the resources needed and the teams responsible for each task in the construction process.

Creating a construction schedule requires thorough planning and the right tools. ProjectManager is construction project management software that offers multiple project planning tools such as Gantt charts, kanban boards and project calendars so you can map out your project activities and create accurate construction schedules. ProjectManager also offers real-time dashboards, workload charts and timesheets so you can keep track of time and costs. Get started for free today.

ProjectManager’s Gantt charts are ideal for construction scheduling. Learn more

Construction Schedule vs. Schedule of Works

A construction schedule and a schedule of works share things in common, but they’re different project documents. A schedule of works is a contract, a construction project schedule is not. The schedule of works lists the work that must be completed on a construction project, but a construction schedule is far more than just a list of work.

A schedule of works doesn’t have the detail and scope of a construction schedule, which includes the duration and deadline for the work, resources needed to execute those tasks and associated costs. Construction schedules also have milestones, identify dependent tasks and more.

5 Steps to Make a Construction Schedule

If you follow these five steps, you’ll hit the major points that need addressing when creating a construction project schedule.

1. Get Info and Tools

Construction scheduling involves different types of resources, stakeholders and participants. Begin by listing all subcontractors involved in the job as there are always many in a construction project. Once you have the list, reach out to them and ask how much time it’ll take to procure materials. Then, ask how long their part of the project is estimated to take. This is key for sound time estimation on your part.

You’ll also need to speak with the local code office and get a list of requirements and what inspections will be needed throughout the build. Code restrictions vary depending on the type of construction and materials you’ll be using, so you’ll need to do the research to make sure your project is compliant.

Related: Free Construction Schedule Template

When it comes to budgeting your project, you’ll need to go through the process with your bank and determine when they’ll release funds. You’ll need a steady influx of cash to keep the project moving forward, so before it starts, it’s key to have an understanding of your bank and its process of disbursing money. Talking to the bank before scheduling gives them a big-picture view of the project and valuable insight into how to schedule.

Determine a project management tool that’ll suit your needs. There are templates that can help you get started with your construction schedule if you don’t want to build your plan and schedule from scratch. Naturally, ProjectManager being an online project management software recommends an online tool. But we’ll get to those benefits in full later.

2. Collect and Prioritize Tasks

You have context and tools, but now you need to break the project down into the steps that’ll lead it from a construction plan to a completed project. These are the tasks. You can’t have an accurate construction schedule until you have a thorough listing of every task that must take place to end with a successful construction.

You can use a work breakdown structure (WBS) to get a handle on the size and scope of your project. You can think of this tool as a way to visualize your deliverables by starting with whatever you’re going to construct and then breaking it down level by level until you’re at the most basic parts.

At this point, it doesn’t hurt to gather the team and your subcontractors to pick their brains. Remember, the more thorough your task list, the more accurate your construction schedule. Tasks are what can derail a project, so keep your mind on the scope. And don’t forget that some tasks are dependent on others, so you’ll want to link those.

Once you have your task list as complete as possible, you’ll next need to put those tasks in order. The WBS can help with this, as it takes a complex project and boils it down to the essential parts and when they need to be worked on. You can use Gantt chart software to spread these tasks over a project timeline. We’ll get into more detail on that in a bit.

Small tasks help to break up the project into larger phases or milestones. A milestone is a point in the project that marks the end of some large phase, say cementing the foundation or adding electrical. Accurately assessing the different tasks and milestones that make up your project is critical for effective construction scheduling.

3. Add Duration

Now take each of the tasks and give them a start and finish date, which creates a bar chart on the Gantt chart that represents the duration of the task. These determinations must be realistic. A construction schedule is impacted by climate and weather forecasts are only so accurate, especially long-term. Look at historical data about the weather to get an estimation of how the climate might impact the work.

Depending on how long-term the project is, you’ll need to calculate your construction schedule holidays and consider sick and vacation days for employees. If there are other seasonally related or personal issues that might come up, be sure to use them as a ruler when measuring your schedule’s duration.

Outside of those issues, there’s working with subcontractors and suppliers. The specifics are outlined in your contract, but more often than not those dates are subject to change. It’s best for your construction schedule to have the wiggle room to accommodate fluctuations.

It’s important to make the schedule realistic. You might want it done at a certain date, but to achieve that goal, you might be tempted to cut corners and sacrifice quality. This isn’t possible in construction. The repercussions are too serious. So, be honest with yourself and give everything enough time in your construction schedule to be completed correctly.

Don’t neglect non-task-related scheduling, such as procurement, delivery and other sources that are crucial to the project. You need to have a clear picture of what to order or reorder supplies. It’s as important as the build. So is scheduling in any inspections, so there’s time in your schedule to respond to any code issues.

There’s also the financial portion of the project to keep in mind when scheduling. Add the bank draws and link them to the appropriate tasks in your construction schedule. You and the bank need to know when money will be required. The last thing you want is to chase the cash and stall the project.

Related: Best Construction Scheduling Software of 2023

4. Allocate and Execute

In a nutshell, construction scheduling is about activities and resources. Tasks won’t get done by themselves, of course, but allocating that work to teams can get confusing in your construction schedule with so many subcontractors to oversee. By color-coding tasks, you can easily distinguish the different teams and work. Now you can pinpoint who’s working on what once the project execution phase begins.

You should’ve already made estimations on the length of work from your teams and have a detailed profile of their skills and experience to assign them appropriately. After allocating your resources, a project management tool like ProjectManager can send alerts when new tasks are assigned and deadlines are due.

Once you have the people assigned to the work, the construction schedule is ready to venture into the real world. Make sure that your resources are balanced. You don’t want to over-allocate one team while another is twiddling its thumbs. ProjectManager has workload calendars to help with this process.

workload page screenshot in ProjectManagerworkload page screenshot in ProjectManager

5. Review, Review, Review

Construction scheduling is highly complex and requires permanent monitoring. No construction schedule is written in stone, at least none that will succeed. Things change, and if you’re not monitoring and reviewing throughout the project, those changes will send you off track—or worse.

You’ll need to look over the construction schedule throughout all project phases to make sure your actual progress aligns with your plan. Look at your schedule daily and depending on your time, update frequently. You can use our construction daily report template to keep track of the progress of your construction project.

This is a matter of time management. If you find that a daily update takes you away from other project issues and responsibilities, then maybe you need to set aside time each week to respond to the changes you’ve noted daily and apply them to the schedule. Monitoring and adjusting your construction schedule as on- and off-site issues arise is perhaps the most important aspect of keeping your project on schedule.

Construction ebook adConstruction ebook ad

Construction Schedule Template

If you’re looking for help in creating a construction schedule, check out our free construction schedule template. When you open this template in ProjectManager, you’ll be able to organize your schedule on powerful construction Gantt charts that link all four dependencies, list deliverables, manage resources, identify milestones and costs and even filter for the critical path.

More Construction Project Management Templates

The construction schedule template is one of the dozens of free construction templates for Excel and Word that you can download on our site. We have free templates for every phase of your project and many industries as well. Here are a few for construction.

Construction Daily Report Template

At the end of every day, construction workers have to document what work was performed, whether it was done or delayed, weather conditions on site and much more. Our free construction daily report for Excel outlines everything you need to cover so you can fill in the blanks.

Construction Estimate Template

Being able to forecast an accurate estimate for construction costs is key to managing the project. Our free construction estimate template for Excel helps you figure out the direct indirect, labor and material costs of your project.

Bill of Quantities Template

A bill of quantities lists all the materials and labor required for a construction project. If you’re managing a larger construction project, you’ll need our free bill of quantities template for Excel. It’s a crucial document for the bidding process as well as helping make a more accurate estimate of the project’s costs.

How to Create a Construction Schedule With ProjectManager

We’ve been hinting about how ProjectManager and construction scheduling go hand in glove, so let’s take a moment to go into greater detail about the many features available in our software that can assist you when scheduling your construction project.

Gantt Charts for Plans and Schedules

Beyond templates to get you started, we have an online Gantt chart that helps you plan your construction schedule. You can import your task list and it instantly populates the timeline. Then add the duration of each task and a bar chart marks the start to end dates. If any tasks are dependent, they can be easily linked. You can also set milestones across the timeline.

You can then assign directly from the construction Gantt chart. Any relevant schematics or notes can be added directly to the task where team members can collaborate. They can add as many documents as they want with our unlimited file storage and comment on any issues with other team members by simply tagging them.

When a change in your construction schedule occurs, adjusting the Gantt chart is simple. Just drag and drop the start and end dates. There are automated notifications, so team members are alerted of any changes to keep everyone on the same page.

Project management training video (t8k47kt3r5)Project management training video (t8k47kt3r5)

Resource and Team Management

When it comes to tracking time and money over the course of your construction project, we have you covered with resource management software. Managing your resources can be complicated in a construction project, but our online software gives you real-time data to better meet that goal.

You can categorize teams, supplies, equipment, etc., adding hourly rates that’ll reflect across our software. When those hours are logged, the actual cost is automatically compared to the planned cost. This gives you the tools to manage construction costs.

Teams can be managed, too. Our software details working days, holidays and planned hours over the course of the project, whether they’re on-site or even in different time zones. You can block out vacations and holidays, keeping your project schedule on track. With our workload feature, you can easily see who’s assigned to what. The workload is color-coded, so you can catch any imbalances quickly and reassign from the workload page. Filter by project, team or both and get the data you want. These features are essential for creating and managing your construction schedule.

Timesheets are designed to automatically update when employees finish their assigned tasks. You can track their logged hours on our real-time dashboard, which also monitors task progress and more.

timesheet screenshot in ProjectManagertimesheet screenshot in ProjectManager

That’s not all; there’s in-depth reporting on project workload, availability, timesheets and more. Reports can be filtered to show just what you need to know or offer a more broad overview when presenting to clients and other stakeholders. ProjectManager keeps your construction schedule on track.

ProjectManager is online project management software with the tools you need for construction scheduling. Our features make planning, monitoring and reporting on your project more efficient and effective. Being online means our software is accessible everywhere and at any time. Plus, the data you get is more accurate because it’s updated immediately. Try ProjectManager for free with this 30-day trial offer.

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How to Control Schedule Conflict in Project Management

PM Articles by ProjectManager.com. 

The last thing a project manager wants is a schedule conflict. But a scheduling conflict is an eventuality in project management. While it’s the project manager’s job to ensure that the workflow is unobstructed, it’s also their responsibility to resolve scheduling conflicts when they arise—a problem that’s unavoidable.

Before you can control a scheduling conflict, you have to understand what it is. Then you can strategize ways to avoid schedule conflicts and employ the project scheduling tools that’ll help. We’ll explore each of those topics and by the end of this blog, you’ll have a handle on managing schedules to prevent a conflict of schedule.

What Is a Scheduling Conflict?

A scheduling conflict is simply when you have two or more activities that will take place at the same time. There can be tasks that are executed simultaneously, of course, but only if you’ve planned to have sufficient resources and time to accommodate them. But that strategy is intentional while scheduling conflicts tend to be done by accident.

When you have a scheduling conflict, you’ll be unable to deliver on the tasks assigned. Your team members will be spread too thin and other resources might not be available that are needed to complete the task. The result of a scheduling conflict can lead to missed deadlines, going over your budget and eroding project morale. None of these are worth the risk of sloppy scheduling that leads to scheduling conflicts.

That doesn’t mean that scheduling mistakes are always responsible for scheduling conflicts. There are accidents that result from human error and there are the risks inherent in any project. Either way, you’ll likely have to deal with scheduling conflicts. The more prepared you are, the better. Part of being prepared is using project management software to schedule your projects.

ProjectManager is award-winning project management software that helps you schedule, manage that schedule and track it in real time. Use our powerful Gantt charts to organize your tasks and resources. You can link all four types of task dependencies to avoid scheduling conflicts and delays. Filter for the critical path and see which tasks are essential to delivering a successful project. Once you set a baseline, you can track your progress in real time and catch any issues, solve them and stay on schedule. Get started with ProjectManager today for free.

ProjectManager's Gantt chart with task infoProjectManager's Gantt chart with task info
ProjectManager’s Gantt charts give you more control when scheduling. Learn more

How to Avoid Schedule Conflict in Project Management

Sometimes, you can’t avoid a scheduling conflict. There are last-minute meetings, miscommunication and other issues that arise. But outside of an anomaly, there are ways to ensure your schedule is free of scheduling conflicts. Project managers are advised to take these precautions.

Use a Work Breakdown Structure to Clearly Define Your Project Scope

Everyone knows that projects are made of many tasks. But what’s often overlooked is that there’s a tool to identify those tasks. If you use a work breakdown structure (WBS), you can map the deliverables and tasks in a project. It’s a tree diagram that’s topped with the final deliverable and the smaller ones that lead to it branch off below that. This provides the full scope of the project and helps avoid scheduling conflicts because it’s easier to avoid conflicts when you know all the work and deliverables upfront.

Identify Any Task Dependencies

Of course, not all tasks are equal. There are often task dependencies or tasks that can start or stop until another task starts or stops. As a simple example, a task dependency is like a wall that can’t be painted until it’s been built. Task dependencies can drastically impact a project schedule, so important to identify them so that you don’t have costly delays or schedule conflicts. You’ll want to also note what type of task dependency it is. There are four: start to start, which starts when another starts; start to finish, which starts when another finishes, finish to finish, which finishes when another finishes and finish to start, which finishes with another starts.

Establish a Sequence for Your Project Tasks

Project schedules should follow a sequence to ensure that you’re not double dipping. It starts broadly by defining the project goals and identifying all stakeholders. This leads to a final deadline that determines when all deliverables must be completed. At this point, you’ll want to employ your WBS to list all your deliverables, tasks and the steps you’ll take to complete the project. You’ll set up processes and procedures. Team members will be assigned to tasks, which will have start dates and due dates. This schedule is then shared with the team and any scheduling conflicts that are found can be changed before the execution of the project.

Related: 25 Must-Have Project Management Excel Templates & Spreadsheets

Assign Roles and Responsibilities

Another way to avoid scheduling conflicts is by ensuring that everyone on the project team has been assigned a role and understands their responsibilities. This gives each team member ownership over a piece of the project which leads to greater quality and the timely completion of their tasks. That’s because each team member will be accountable. They’ll be in charge of dealing with any issues, such as delays, missing resources and conflicts.

Identify the Critical Path

The critical path is the longest sequence of activities that must be completed on time for the whole project to succeed. Another way of looking at this is that the critical path separates those tasks that are essential to delivering the project from others that could be neglected if time and money become an issue. This is very important to schedule for obvious reasons. You now know the tasks that are critical and can focus on them, while others can be delayed if there’s a conflict, as well as how much float or slack you have.

Create a Project Schedule

The above outline the steps to making a project schedule. Without a project schedule, you’re flying blind. This isn’t recommended for small projects and certainly not for large, more complex ones. Having a project schedule also allows you to track your project by comparing the planned progress against the actual progress. It keeps everyone working on the same page so they know what needs to be done and when it has to be done. All this works toward running a successful project with fewer scheduling conflicts.

What Project Scheduling Tools Can Help With Scheduling Conflict?

Making a project schedule is part of the planning phase in project management. Project management has scheduling tools that can help you both plan and execute the project. Let’s look at three common types of project scheduling tools and how they help reduce scheduling conflicts.

1. Gantt Charts

We already touched on Gantt charts. These are the workhorses of traditional project management methodologies. They’re great for projects that follow phases when one thing happens after another. They detail the entire project on a visual timeline that shows all the tasks and their durations. You can often add milestones, link dependencies and more to schedule the project from start to finish.

2. Project Calendars

A project calendar might not be as robust as a Gantt chart, but they’re also a lot simpler to make and use. Calendars have long been used in scheduling because they work. They’re a visual tool that lays out a month on a page and gives you start dates and due dates. They’re easy to share and understand, which is why they’ve been a staple of project scheduling from almost the beginning of projects.

3. Kanban Boards

Kanban boards are a more modern tool. They’re a visual workflow system that breaks up a production schedule into columns on a board with tasks represented by cards that move across the board as they’re being completed. This allows a project manager to see the whole process and catch problems like scheduling conflicts before the team encounters them. The project manager can then reallocate resources to resolve the issue and keep the team’s work unobstructed.

ProjectManager Is Robust Project Scheduling Software

You’ll find all three of those project scheduling tools in ProjectManager, award-winning project management software that helps schedule, manage and track projects in real time. Scheduling starts with onboarding your team. Our software allows you to set your team’s availability, including PTO, vacations and global holidays, which makes assigning easier. When you’re building your project schedule, you can avoid scheduling conflicts by knowing who is available and when.

Use Multiple Project Scheduling Tools

Once you’ve scheduled your project on our Gantt chart, you can share that plan with your project team. But team members don’t need all the features of a Gantt chart, which is why we have multiple project tools. They can execute their work on any tool they’re comfortable with, such as task lists, kanban boards or even calendars. All share the same data and update in real time simultaneously to keep everyone on the same page.

ProjectManager's kanban boardProjectManager's kanban board
Monitor Project Progress With Real-Time Dashboards

Updating project scheduling tools is only one aspect of real-time data. Having live data means that project managers can monitor the project schedule and ensure that the project is on track. Project managers can get a high-level overview of the project by toggling to the real-time dashboards. They automatically collect live data and display it on easy-to-read graphs and charts that measure metrics such as time, cost, workload and much more. Unlike lightweight alternative software, there’s no time-consuming configuration necessary. It’s ready when you are.

ProjectManager's dashboardProjectManager's dashboard

Scheduling is essential to delivering a project on time. Our software makes that possible with multiple project views, real-time dashboards and reports that go deeper into the data. Reports are customizable to zero in on only the data which is important. They can be easily shared to keep stakeholders updated on the project’s progress. With our software, you can plan, manage and track your schedule from start to finish.

ProjectManager is online project management software that connects teams across departments and continents. You can plan your schedule and share it with distributed teams and keep track of their progress anywhere and at any time. Join teams from Avis, Nestle and Siemens who use our software to deliver successful projects. Get started with ProjectManager today for free.

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