Project Management

[ Project Management Topics ]

Gantt Chart

Gantt chart

In controlling tasks, their duration, and what has precedence when you are most likely going to want to develop some type of chart that shows timeframes and scheduling. A chart that is commonly used for this purpose is the Gantt chart, otherwise known as a bar chart. A Gantt chart is "a graphic display of schedule-related information. In the typical bar chart, activities of other project elements are listed down the left side of the chart, dates are shown across the top, and activity durations are show as date-placed horizontal bars." (Newell, 2002, p. 391)

Sample Gantt chart from MS Project:

Gantt Chart

The Gantt chart is based on time versus other methods such as production, weight, volume, quantity, etc. A Gantt chart is most widely developed using tools like Microsoft Project or Microsoft Excel, however, you can create one on graph paper if you wish.

Another sample Gantt Chart:


(above taken from http://searchcio.techtarget.com/sDefinition/0,,sid19_gci331397,00.html)

A snippet of history

Henry Gantt, an American engineer, created the Gantt chart in 1917. He developed the chart to help in the production flow. Henry Gantt is best know for this chart, however, he also was key in developing more humanistic theories on management and his emphasizing better working conditions and its effect on the psychology of workers.

Gantt/Bar chart weaknesses:

A drawback to note with the Gantt chart though is that although it shows progress and performance to schedule, you can not easily ascertain specific problems such as an individual person being a bottleneck. Here is a sample Gantt chart: