Tips for Entering Tasks

Keep the following in mind when entering tasks:

• Don't be overly concerned about sequence when first entering tasks. You can worry about that after you have a "first draft" of tasks in place.

• Enter duration estimates either at the same time you enter your new tasks or later. The default duration estimate is 1 day, and estimates are formatted with a question mark to remind you that they are not confirmed yet.

• Don't enter a start or finish date in the Start or Finish fields in the Gantt Chart, although it might be tempting to do so. In most cases, you'll want Microsoft Project to calculate those dates for you, based on other task information you'll be entering.

• Name the task with sufficient description to communicate to team members and stakeholders what the task is about. A task called simply "Review" or "Edit" might not be enough information.

• Decide whether you want the context of the task to be understood if it's ever separated (by being in a separate view, report, filter, or grouping, for example) from its surrounding tasks. For example, you might have several tasks in different phases for "Administer contracts." But one task might relate to procurement, one to the architects, and another one to the builders.

• Note whether you have sets of tasks that are repeated in different phases of the project. You might want to give them more general names so you can copy and paste these sets of tasks under their respective phases, instead of repeatedly typing them individually.

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