Calculation Duration, Start and Finish

​​​​​For optimal scheduling flexibility, it's recommended that you allow application to calculate the start and finish dates for tasks based on the durations and task dependencies you enter. If you have unavoidable constraints, such as an event date, you can set a specific start or finish date for a task.

Start date for task

Can be calculated or entered

The Start field shows the date when an assigned resource is scheduled to begin working on a task.
Date the task is scheduled to start. If you do not type a start date, application calculates a start date based on such things as relationships, calendars, and the scheduling method. If you type a start date, will be set automatically a Start No Earlier Than constraint and uses the date you type as the constraint date.

Finish date for task

Can be calculated or entered

The Finish field shows the date when a task is scheduled to be completed.
Date the task is scheduled to finish. If you do not type a finish date, application calculates it based on such things as relationships, calendars, and the scheduling method. If resources are assigned, Project also considers the resource calendar and assignment units. If you type a finish date, will be set automatically a Finish No Earlier Than constraint and uses the date you type as the constraint date.

Example   You need to filter for all finish dates scheduled after March. You filter on the Finish field to see only those tasks scheduled with a finish date beyond March 31.​

Duration for tasks

Can be calculated or entered

The Duration field is the total span of active working time for a task. This is generally the amount of working time from the start to the finish of a task.

How Calculated:   application calculates the duration of a task by counting the amount of active working time between the scheduled start and end of the task. This is generally the time from task start to finish, not counting nonworking time.

Enter the duration for tasks when you create the tasks. The Duration field is one of the major elements for scheduling calculations. It is the span of time shown by the Gantt bars on the Gantt Chart.

Example   Chris is scheduled to work on the "Write proposal" task on Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday. Jamie is scheduled to work on the "Write proposal" task on Wednesday and Thursday. Sean is scheduled to work on the "Write proposal" task on the following Monday and Tuesday. The working span of the "Write proposal" task, and therefore its duration, is five days (Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Monday, and Tuesday).

Remarks   The default for new tasks is estimated as 1 day (1d?). The question mark indicates that the duration is an estimate. Add a question mark to any duration estimate. Remove the question mark to indicate a committed duration. You can filter or sort by estimated durations.​


Learn more:
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Applies to version 2015 and higher.
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