Mastering Project Task Management With SharePoint
Task management is the core element of managing projects of all sizes. BrightWork expands on SharePoint’s existing task management functionality by allowing you to:
- Assign and Plan with the in-browser scheduler
- Find and do using Lists, My Work and Boards
- Update and Report with total transparency.
Following on from a fantastic webinar delivered by BrightWork Solution Consultant Lisa Millette, we take a look at how you can use BrightWork and SharePoint to master task management.
Assign and Plan Tasks
The out of the box Task list in SharePoint is a great way to detail not only detail the project’s tasks but also assign them out to relevant team members.
Using BrightWork templates, there are several ways to build out a task list. These include
• A datasheet
• A form
• Syncing with Microsoft Project Professional.
Task Management Using a Datasheet
Most people are familiar with datasheets from working with Microsoft Excel. In fact, a lot of BrightWork customers manage their projects (with varied success) on Excel before switching to SharePoint.
The above video shows a task list that has already been filled out. This can be achieved by editing a task list web part (this can be found under Tasks Update on your BrightWork template).
Using the Tasks tab within the SharePoint ribbon under Tasks you have options to Insert tasks, or Indent/Outdent items to establish a work breakdown structure.
You can move items up and down (both individually and in groups) or you can simply type in your new task in the empty row at the bottom of the sheet.
Once you have set the dates of your tasks, you can use the BrightWork in-browser scheduler to calculate the project schedule.
You can notify the assigned person of their tasks by email and they can be directed to the task with a dedicated link. From here they can review the task and edit the task status as needed.
Creating tasks with a Form
The second way to add tasks is, of course, using a form. Once you click New Task you will be lead to a form that should be familiar to SharePoint users.
As it’s SharePoint, this form is configurable so you can add custom rows as needed. Maybe you want to track budget items or the cost of certain items? You can of course, roll this up into the overall project.
Using Microsoft Project Professional for task management with BrightWork
Many experienced Project Managers use Microsoft Project for task management, project reporting and tracking project schedules, either standalone or with SharePoint.
By using the BrightWork Project Structured template, you can sync your project data with Microsoft Project.
Using Microsoft Project together with BrightWork on SharePoint can simplify project reporting by enabling team members to update their work in BrightWork (on SharePoint) once, without using MS Project. These updates are automatically synced with MS Project. Likewise, any changes you make in MS Project are reflected in your BrightWork site.
For more information, check out another article I wrote on syncing Microsoft Project with BrightWork.
Find and Update Tasks
Once you have assigned and planned your tasks, your team members and colleagues need a simple way to find and update their work.
On the project Quick Launch, team members can access their My Work Reports where they will find project tasks that have been assigned to them.
Without ever leaving the report, they can update the items in the overlay window. These changes made to these tasks will then roll up to the project and portfolio level. The overall team can also be notified that your work is completed.
For a more visual, modern method of task management, you can use Kanban Boards. By dragging and dropping task cards between columns, you can update the status of your work without navigating to multiple web pages.
You could also use the My Work Due Soon Report at both the project and cross-project level (through the project office). Project managers often like to create a scheduled email of this report to be sent to team members on a weekly basis.
Outside of work, Micheál likes to find new stories through podcasts, movies, sport and travel.