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Skip to 0 minutes and 1 secondSPEAKER: In this video, we will show you how to track the progress of your project. To do this, we are going to use a Gantt chart. First, we'll open a spreadsheet we prepared earlier. This Excel template shows the planned activities and their durations. In this example, we are 16 days into the project. So what has been done so far? The Gantt chart makes it easy to track the progress of each activity. On the left of the screen, we can see the list of activities created during the planning phase. On the right of the screen, we have a picture of how that work is progressing. Is it completed? Is it about to start?

Skip to 0 minutes and 40 secondsOr is it still just part of the plan? Let's take a closer look at this example. Here the kickoff meeting was scheduled for day one and is expected to take one day. And so it did. We can record this in the actual start cell and the actual duration cell. Now our chart shows the meeting did take place at the right time and was completed without delays. This is shown by the violet colour. The next task, Activity B or venue selection, started immediately after the kickoff meeting. It finished six days later, again without any delays. And again, you can see that the colour of the Gantt bar changes to violet to show that they are completed.

Skip to 1 minute and 25 secondsLooking at Activity C, find a catering service, we can see that the service started one day later than planned. But it took the same time to complete, five days. This means that the planned and the actual start dates are now out of line by one day. You can see the delay here as the template highlights the delays on completed activities in dark yellow. Activity D, negotiate a contract with a catering company, started just after Activity C and it is on its way without further delays. Activity E, arranging the rooms, is complete. But it took one day more than expected, which is again highlighted in yellow. Activity F, arranging the equipment, started on time.

Skip to 2 minutes and 15 secondsWhile four days has been already spent on this activity, it has delivered only 50% of what was expected. This is highlighted by the violet and light violet colours. The light violet colour means that the time has been spent, but the violet colour shows how much of the activity has been completed. We can now carry on recording the other activities.

Skip to 2 minutes and 43 secondsActivity O, or invite media, was supposed to start earlier, just after Activity L ended, but it was delayed. This activity didn't actually start until after the time it was supposed to be completed. You can see that the work that was actually done is coloured yellow. In the four days of work that has taken place, only 50% of what was planned was actually completed. This part of the activity is marked in dark yellow. The light yellow cells show that the work has been done, but the activity has not been completed.

Tracking project progress

This video shows how to track the progress of a project, using the company event project as an example. A Gantt chart can be useful when tracking your project, to compare the planned dates with the actual ones.

Once the project has started, besides the progress of activities, you may want to track also the use of resources overall on your project, to see whether you are spending more than you planned.

You can download the example files used in the video (Gantt chart company event in progress and the record of the actual costs in the Budget file) below.

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This video is from the free online course:

Business Fundamentals: Project Management

The Open University