2015 is the year of work visualization, combining people, work, and content in a visual framework to uncover valuable insights about the patterns of collaboration. At Smartsheet, we’ve been working to give our users more ways to picture their work, with new features like enhanced symbols, and integrations with Tableau and Office Timeline to turn data into simplified, beautiful visuals. The analyst firm GigaOM also recently published a report exploring the future of work visualization, and we released our own piece on its importance. We feel strongly about visualization and its power to offer a never-before-seen-view of who is doing what and with whom.
The first step to any plan is thinking about a timeline. You want to know what needs to get done and when, to ensure that you stay on track. From a teacher to an event planner to a project manager, a timeline is an easy-to-digest, visual way to map out your plan. You can manually create a timeline in Excel, but it can be a long, frustrating experience to make it look the way you want. Many people find it much easier to use a timeline template, a pre-formatted timeline that can be customized to your needs. All you have to do is enter your information and choose your colors, and a timeline is made for you.
When you’re managing a complex project and working with different departments, external collaborators, and hundreds of details, mistakes are bound to happen. Smaller mishaps, like a missed deadline or misunderstanding between teams, can be resolved and usually don’t derail the entire project. However, there are a number of things that can stop a project in its tracks and lead to its ultimate failure. Poor communication or lack of accountability may start off as a “small mishap,” but they can end up silently killing your entire project. Thankfully, there are experts we can learn from.
Smartsheet and Google Apps complement each other at every turn. From seamless integrations with Gmail, Drive, Calendar, and Google Docs, and a hassle-free single sign-on, you can instantly connect Smartsheet to Google Apps and maximize your productivity.Now, it’s even easier to use Smartsheet with Google Apps. Smartsheet was one of only two partners who worked alongside Google to streamline how the Google Apps Marketplace works. Admins can now choose to install our Google Docs add-on, Smartsheet Merge, across entire domains with just a couple clicks. Previously, if you wanted to use the Smartsheet add-on for Google Docs, each user had to individually install it.
Excel was traditionally created to be a data analytics and number crunching tool, but 60% of spreadsheets today contain no formulas. Its usage has now evolved to serving as a project management tool. While you can coordinate basic work tasks and manage lists, creating a Gantt chart in Excel, from scratch, can be a time-consuming and frustrating task. Unless you want to spend up to an hour manually tweaking Excel to look professional and presentation-ready, an Excel template is the easiest way to make a Gantt chart. A template is especially helpful if you don’t have a lot of experience making a project timeline.
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