What is a Gantt chart and how does it work?


A project manager making a Gantt chart. Image: NicoElNino/Adobe Stock In the early 1900s, Henry Laurence Gantt( 1861– 1919 ), an American mechanical engineer, created a tool for scheduling and tracking production in producing

plants. The Gantt chart, named after the developer, is typically utilized in project management today. Gantt charts can be produced utilizing specialized software application, such as task management tools, or by hand with pen and paper.

What is a Gantt chart?

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A Gantt chart is a horizontal bar chart that shows a project schedule, showing specific jobs’ or activities’ start and end dates and their dependencies.

Each chart represents a job; reliances in between jobs are represented by arrows connecting the bars, suggesting which jobs must be finished before others can start. This enables task managers to visualize and identify the job’s critical path, which is the sequence of tasks that must be finished on time to guarantee the job is on schedule.

What is a Gantt chart used for?

A Gantt chart is used in job management for task planning, resource allowance, timeline management, development tracking and interaction. Project managers are encumbered the duties of guaranteeing tasks are finished on time and within spending plan. Among a Gantt chart’s crucial capabilities is task planning.

SEE: Get your task plan began with a Gantt chart in Smartsheet.

Task managers can utilize it to break down a job into smaller sized jobs, activities or occasions and appoint them to team members with particular start and end dates. The Gantt chart can then be used to interact the task schedule and development to stakeholders, employee and clients to ensure the task stays on track and that deadlines are satisfied.

Project supervisors can visualize the job timeline, recognize possible hold-ups or traffic jams, and adjust schedules as required. Gantt charts can likewise be used to track the conclusion of each job or activity, supplying a real-time view of the project’s development.

What are the main benefits of using Gantt charts?

With Gantt charts, each employee knows who must do what. This assists the group stay efficient and boosts collaboration, which eventually helps teams total jobs on time and within spending plan.

However, the benefits of Gantt charts are not limited to these factors alone. Here are other advantages of Gantt charts in task management.

Resource preparation and allotment

To prevent overloading people and processes, Gantt charts offer a clear graph of task timelines and job dependencies, making it easier for job supervisors to assign resources, such as team members, products and equipment, and ensure they are used efficiently throughout the job.


Gantt chart consolidates all project information in an easy-to-understand control panel. It gives groups a task overview, consisting of tasks, assignees, due dates and other vital details.

A Gantt chart’s graph simplifies intricate projects and their essential efficiency indications, making it easy for job supervisors and staff member to see the job’s development, milestones and deadlines.

Progress tracking

Project supervisors can monitor the progress of set up jobs as staff member finish their tasks and the general project percentage boosts. This is accomplished through visual indications such as bars and turning points that represent each task’s period and conclusion status.

SEE: Usage Gantt charts in monday work management to help imagine your task progress.

Dependence tracking

Job reliances are the relationships in between specific jobs that determine the order in which they must be finished. For example, some jobs can begin once others have actually been finished, while others should be finished concurrently.

By picturing job dependencies in a Gantt chart, task supervisors can comprehend the important path, prevent hold-ups and assign resources effectively.

Communication and collaboration

Gantt charts are important tools for task interaction and cooperation. They supply a shared view of the job’s development, enabling job supervisors, staff member and stakeholders to communicate and collaborate more effectively.

How does a Gantt chart work?

Gantt charts use horizontal bars to represent each task’s duration and start and end dates. Some of the key functions of a Gantt chart include:

  1. Determine the jobs: Identify all tasks required to finish the project, and define each job as having a specific due date.
  2. Determine the task reliances: Once the jobs have been recognized, identify the dependences between them to arrange the order in which jobs must be completed and the length of time they will take.
  3. Assign resources: Assign resources to each task, including personnel, equipment and materials needed.
  4. Produce the chart: Utilizing a Gantt chart software or tool, produce a horizontal bar chart with the timeline on the horizontal axis and the jobs on the vertical axis.
  5. Include job information: For each task, include relevant information such as the job name, the start and end date, the duration, the designated resources, and other relevant details.
  6. Update and track progress: As the job progresses, upgrade the Gantt chart to show the actual development made. This can be done by shading or coloring finished tasks, including notes and changing timelines.

Key elements of Gantt charts

Gantt charts consist of a number of components that collaborate to ensure project success.

Job list

A task list. Image: SlideTeam The task list is a vertical list of all tasks needed to finish the job. Each job ought to be clearly defined and have a specific due date.


A timeline in Office Timeline. Image: Workplace Timeline The timeline is a horizontal axis that represents the duration of the job. Depending on the project’s duration, it is generally divided into days,

weeks or months. Bars Image: Smartsheet

Bars are horizontal lines that represent the period of each job. The job’s start date is indicated by the left end of the bar, while completion date is shown by the best end of the bar. The length of the bar represents the period of the job.


Dependencies in Smartsheet. Image: Smartsheet Dependencies are shown using arrows that link the bars representing the dependent tasks. Arrows indicate

  • the relationship between tasks, such as: Finish to Start(FS): The predecessor must end up prior to the successor can
  • begin. Start to Start(SS): The predecessor should begin prior to the follower can start.
  • Finish to Complete (FF): The predecessor must complete before the follower can complete.
  • Start to Complete (SF): The predecessor should start prior to the successor can finish.


Milestones in ClickUp.< img src="https://www.techrepublic.com/wp-content/uploads/2023/04/tr4523-gantt-Figure-E-770x397.png"alt ="Milestones in ClickUp."width="770 "height ="397"/ > Image: ClickUp Milestones are considerable occasions in the project, such as finishing a significant task or providing a critical component. Diamonds represent them in the Gantt chart and are normally identified with a particular date.

SEE: Check out how you can implement Gantt charts in ClickUp for turning point tracking.

Development bars

Progress bars in SlideTeam. Image: SlideTeam Development bars are utilized to show the real progress made on each task. They are normally revealed as shaded locations within the bars representing the jobs.

Secret takeaways

  • A Gantt chart is a task management tool that displays the start and end dates of specific tasks, their dependencies, and the task’s total timeline.
  • It permits job managers to visually track development, determine prospective delays and adjust timelines appropriately.
  • Gantt charts can be produced digitally using specialized software application or manually with pen and paper.
  • Gantt charts are not restricted to a particular market. Organizations aiming to improve the project management processes will find the tool advantageous. From building to producing to software development to event planning, a Gantt chart can be customized to different industries and companies’ usage cases.

With a Gantt chart, groups can plan, track and handle their projects efficiently. By envisioning the timeline of specific jobs and their dependencies, task managers can recognize possible problems and change timelines as needed, which can assist to make sure the project’s success.

If you believe you may want to begin incorporating Gantt charts into your job planning, take a look at our list of the top Gantt chart software application.

Top project management software recommendations

1 Wrike


Go to website Tackle intricate jobs with Wrike’s acclaimed project management software. Break tasks into simple steps, designate tasks to team members, and imagine development with Gantt charts, Kanban boards, and calendars. Handle resource allotment and forecasting with software application that’s easy to launch. Automation and AI features strip away lengthy admin jobs so you can do the very best work of your life. Enhance your practices, align your group, and guarantee you hit due dates and remain on spending plan.

Learn more about Wrike

2 ClickUp


See site ClickUp is among the highest-rated project management tools today. Usage Docs, Reminders, Goals, Calendars, Chat, scheduling, designated remarks, customized views, & more with this all-in-one project management tool.Used by 800,000

+ groups in companies like Airbnb, Google, and Uber, it brings all of your jobs into a single app! Constructed for groups of all sizes and industries, Our totally customizable & proprietary functions make it a must-have for anybody wanting to keep project management in one place.

Discover more about ClickUp

3 monday.com


Visit site monday.com Work OS is the task management software that helps you and your group plan, perform, and track projects and workflows in one collective space. Manage whatever from basic to complex projects more effectively with the assistance of visual boards, 200+ ready-made design templates, clever no-code automations, and easy combinations. In addition, customized control panels streamline reporting, so you can examine your development and make data-driven choices.

Discover more about monday.com

4 Smartsheet


Check out site Smartsheet is an online work execution platform empowering organizations of all sizes to prepare, manage, automate, and report on work. Over 80,000 brand names rely on Smartsheet for task and work management.

Discover more about Smartsheet

5 GanttPRO


See site Effective instinctive app to arrange jobs in minutes! GanttPRO has all the key elements of classic Gantt charts and presents essential features for job supervisor: advanced job management, progress tracking, resource and cost management, team partnership, job time tracking, baselines, job export and sharing, and more.

Find out more about GanttPRO


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