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Free Project Schedule Templates

Smartsheet Contributor Kate Eby on Sep 12, 2019

In this article, you’ll find all the project schedule templates you need to get started on simple or detailed schedules. We’ve included project schedule templates in Gantt, timeline, and list formats that cover high-level project overviews and monthly and weekly schedules.

Included on this page, you'll find details on how to create a project schedule and a variety of project schedule templates, including an Excel project management template with Gantt schedule creation, a monthly Gantt project schedule template, and many more.

Project Schedule Template

Project Schedule Template

With this project schedule template, you can track delivery dates and add custom phases to a color-coded Gantt chart. You can also Include notes on the schedule, budget, project resources, and project risks, and add additional comments. Leverage this overview template for project portfolio management.

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Excel Project Management Template with Gantt Schedule Creation


Project Management with Gantt Schedule Template

If you are managing a large project with many resources, you probably want to view schedule changes in real time and share updates with your team. Use this customizable Excel project development schedule template with a customizable, color-coded Gantt chart to track tasks, assignees, due dates, and task completion by project phase.

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 Excel | Smartsheet

Master Project Schedule Template

Master Project Schedule Template

Project managers leverage the work breakdown structure (WBS) and the project timeline to create the project schedule. To get started with this master project schedule template, add your WBS component ID numbers, task names, start and end dates, task duration, and assignee to the chart, and the template will automatically create a project overview with the timeline. In the Smartsheet version, select the Critical Path button to highlight essential tasks.

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Project Timeline Template

Project Timeline Template PowerPoint

A project implementation plan schedule is essential for overseeing the progress of projects, project phases, and sub-tasks. Customize this project schedule template with the built-in Gantt timeline to track multiple projects or major tasks at once, note the task start and end dates, task duration, assignee, and milestones, and manually flag overdue items.

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Excel | PowerPoint

Multiple Project Dashboard Template

Multiple Project Dashboard Template

Dashboards offer high-level project schedule views to help you stay up to date on impending deadlines. Use this multiple project schedule dashboard template to quickly track progress for a project portfolio or more than one project.

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Excel | PowerPoint

Monthly Gantt Project Schedule Template

Monthly Gantt Project Schedule Template

In project management, it’s crucial that the manager has a 50,000-foot view, while the team can benefit from a more detailed picture of the schedule. This colorful monthly project schedule highlights the active phases of the project by month. Manually position each colored bar and drag it to cover the applicable dates. Display this template on a monitor in a common area or share it in a project-related online space.

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Weekly Schedule Template

Project Weekly Schedule Template

Designed for the individual team member, this weekly schedule template provides a clear view of pending and completed tasks. A task list such as this can also serve as a record of efforts for each team member when they’re completing quarterly reviews or revising a resume.

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Excel Construction Project Timeline Template

Construction Project Timeline Template

This construction project schedule template provides a construction timeline for building a new house. However, you can customize the phases and tasks to reflect other types of construction endeavors. In addition to capturing administrative details, such as the project manager’s name and the planned project duration, this template lists each activity, its status, the assignee, the activity start and end dates, and the duration. Finally, the template includes space for comments for each task.

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Excel | Smartsheet

Marketing Timeline Template

Marketing initiatives also require project management schedules, and timelines can help you visualize the deadlines for the various forms of marketing content. Simply add the task name and the start and end dates, and the timeline will automatically display the duration and any overlapping tasks.

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How to Create a Project Schedule

Whether your project is simple or complex, a schedule is an essential document for communicating what you must finish and when. The following basic steps form the scheduling framework to see you through any project:

  1. Define the Tasks: For a simple project or a small team, you may only need an activity list. For a more complex project, create a work breakdown structure, including work packages. From the WBS, extract an activity list. 
  2. Create a Timeline: A timeline provides a visual representation of activity over time. Apply the tasks from the activity list to the timeline in a logical order. When you create a timeline in a software-based Gantt chart, the chart automatically highlights any dependencies or overlaps in timing.
  3. Establish Milestones: Milestones provide checkpoints for reviewing progress. They can form around logical groupings of tasks or project phases. 
  4. Apply Calendar Dates: Overlay the timeline on a calendar and set the start date and any other fixed calendar dates. 
  5. Allocate Resources: Determine what material resources you need for each task. After you assign office space, equipment, and supplies, assign staff to tasks. Securing and allocating material resources first ensures that team members always have the space and tools they need to do the job at the scheduled time.
  6. Iterate on the Planned Schedule and Update the Actual Schedule: Ensure that your team and other stakeholders review the planned schedule before the project starts. People who perform specific jobs every day can frequently spot problems with estimates and task order. Throughout the lifecycle of the project, update the schedule to reflect any delays, change requests, or other changes. Share the revised calendar with the team.

What Is a Project Schedule?

A project schedule usually appears in a graphic format and describes the expected dates for completing tasks and achieving milestones. A project schedule also records the expected duration for each activity and the logical order of activities. A well-considered project schedule helps you and your team meet deadlines while managing resources.

Who Creates the Project Schedule?

Generally, the project manager creates the schedule in consultation with team members and other stakeholders. For large or complex projects, some organizations assign a dedicated project scheduler or a scheduling team to create and maintain the schedule. The PM also updates the schedule as new information and situations develop. Creating the schedule may be one of the most challenging tasks in project planning. 

What Data Do You Add to a Project Schedule?

When you build a project schedule, you may rely on some or all of the following project details and documents:

  • Activity list
  • Work breakdown structure
  • Project network diagram
  • Resource calendars
  • Duration estimates
  • Project scope statement
  • Organizational process assets

Although you may sketch out your schedule on paper or in a word processing program, dedicated project management software can facilitate the creation and updating of schedules and can often provide an easy way to share schedules with teams. You can also easily create a custom schedule template in Excel. 

How Do You Use a Project Schedule?

A project schedule helps you plan and monitor your project. Use planning resources to create an initial or baseline schedule, and then measure progress against this planned timeline. Review any problems that arise or change requests that are submitted against the baseline schedule and update the document to reflect the changes.

Improve Project Management with Project Schedule Templates from Smartsheet

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