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A Gantt chart is a highly useful project management tool used to visualize the tasks required for a project as building blocks. It takes the form of a bar chart with two axes. The vertical axis lists all the project tasks or phases and the horizontal axis represents the timeline for completing them.
Gantt charts are versatile, so they can be useful for multiple roles – not just project managers, but also team leaders, CEOs, operations managers, and consultants. But to build one, we often need good Gantt chart examples.
So far, so good. But if you’re new to using Gantt charts, having them described to you is of limited usefulness. If you want to gain a clear idea of how you could use Gantt charts in your teams, it’s much more useful to take a look at some clear examples so you can see how they work.
Gantt charts are flexible enough that they can be used for almost any industry you can think of. This very flexibility can make it difficult to know where to start, so we’ll begin by looking at how to use some simple Gantt chart functionality.
The simplest form of the Gantt chart shows the tasks to be completed on the vertical axis and the timeline for completing them on the horizontal axis. This can be used for any kind of project which entails multiple steps, from constructing an office building to designing, testing, and launching new software, to something as simple as teaching a child how to bake a cake.
Here’s what it looks like:
A dependency is a relationship between each block or task. Each individual task is dependent on several others so some tasks must be completed before you can move on to the next. A Gantt chart dependency is a way of clearly representing these relationships between tasks.
When baking a cake, you cannot put the cake batter in the oven until the oven has reached the right temperature. This is an example of a Finish-to-start task dependency. Task B – put cake batter in the oven – cannot start until task A – ensure oven has reached optimum temperature – has finished.
This is what our simple Gantt chart example looks like with dependencies added:
Milestones are markers in the project’s schedule signifying important events or goals. Key milestones may include:
Milestones will appear as key markers on the chart that are easily distinguishable from tasks. In our example of teaching a child to make a cake, a milestone could be when the child gets their parent to check progress before moving on – this is the equivalent of getting client or stakeholder approval. Again, in this example, a useful milestone could be for the parent to check that their child has properly weighed out the cake ingredients before mixing.
Here is what our simple Gantt chart looks like with some milestones added:
A baseline is used to outline the target schedule of a project. It is useful for visually understanding a project’s overall progression over time and can be used to compare project progression against the originally planned schedule.
Once you’ve created a Gantt chart with tasks, dependencies, and milestones, you can easily take a snapshot of that in Teamhood, which acts as your baseline and will then exist in the background to help you monitor your progress.
Here is what that looks like:
Now that we’ve seen how to go from the simplest form of the Gantt chart to a slightly more sophisticated version that includes dependencies, milestones, and a baseline, let’s look at how to apply this functionality to various real-world scenarios.
Perhaps the most obvious application. Gantt charts can be used to help plan and manage almost any kind of project. Here’s a screenshot of a project that has been planned on a Gantt chart. Note how it applies dependencies and key milestones.
As you can see in this example, a Gantt chart helps you to:
For software development, a Gantt chart helps you to plan the project and gather user requirements, while also helping to design, implement, test, deploy, and maintain the software. Each of those tasks can be tracked on a single chart, as well as broken down into their constituent parts in their own separate Gantt charts.
A Gantt chart example in software engineering can also be used to submit bug reports and track issues, helping your development team to resolve issues quickly and efficiently.
Here’s a Gantt chart example in software engineering in Teamhood:
Gantt charts are great for product development. You can add any tasks you like, which can include researching the target market, gathering user needs, setting budgets, planning release dates, building in user testing, and so on.
Here’s an example of how a product development roadmap Gantt chart example might look using Teamhood:
Gantt charts are often used by marketing teams – especially those in tech and software businesses that have a project management mindset. Gantt charts can be particularly useful for planning and tracking multi-channel marketing campaigns that could include paid ads, social media, email marketing, content marketing, video, and more.
Once again, each element of a campaign can be broken down into its separate tasks, dependencies, and milestones, while it also makes sense to build an overall campaign chart with milestones related to the campaign’s individual components.
Here’s how a marketing Gantt chart example could look using Teamhood:
Email marketing is often done either ad-hoc or following a rigid process without much flexibility. Yet, when planned, executed, and tracked, email marketing can still provide the highest ROI of any marketing channel.
This Gantt chart example can be great for managing segmented campaigns to different audiences with different needs, and whom you might email at different times or at different frequencies. Tasks in each email campaign could include audience segmentation, list building, designing campaigns, testing messages and designs, launching, tracking results, and reviewing results.
Here’s an example of how an email marketing Gantt chart example could look using Teamhood:
This is an industry where Gantt chart use has been common for decades. Gantt charts highlight critical tasks, help to track progress and assign resources appropriately, while also keeping on top of those all-important dependencies. This is crucial since even more than in most industries, individual tasks in construction are highlighted and dependent upon one another.
Here’s how a construction Gantt chart example might look in Teamhood:
Gantt charts are less common within HR teams but can be super useful to manage multiple tasks and coordinate working with recruiters. They are especially useful during certain busy periods, for example:
Here’s a Gantt chart example that HR teams might find useful:
As with any other project, building a business requires defining and setting out clear tasks and deliverables, and setting clear deadlines. You could be looking to define the vision, work out what resources you need, set sales and revenue targets, secure funding or investment, and so on.
Market analysis, product research, competitor analysis… the list of possible tasks goes on and on. Gantt charts can be a great way of putting all this together and are especially useful for influencing business partners, investors, and possibly even key hires.
Here’s a Gantt chart example of how a business plan might look using Teamhood:
Gantt charts are great for breaking down design and CX workflows too. This is true for any kind of customer journey – or indeed any kind of creative design project – but website design is as good an example as any. From conducting marketing research to drafting website templates and wireframes to creating mock-ups to building minimum viable versions, to testing, to launch, to user testing, there are multiple tasks than can in themselves be broken down further to set timelines, and monitor progress, and assign resources more effectively.
Here’s how a website design Gantt chart example might look in Teamhood:
This blog has highlighted just a few of the most common and most useful real-world applications for Gantt charts. As we stated at the beginning, Gantt charts can be used to plan, execute, and track almost any kind of project – and the more complex a project is, the more useful Gantt chart examples like these can be.
Teamhood’s project management tools contain several unique features and benefits not seen in other tools. Find out more about how Teamhood’s flexible project management software works, or book a demo to see how it could work for you: