How to make a timeline easily

Timeline makers are powerful visual tools for presenting project or planning information clearly.  This post will show you how to easily make a timeline slide for client or management presentations, with a simple template driven timeline maker that plugs into PowerPoint. 

In the past it has been difficult to create a timeline that is graphically appealing or to make a timeline that is appropriate for presentations to staff, clients or managers.  Free timeline makers, also called timeline creators or timeline generators, are a category of software tools that make this task much easier. This post shows how to make a timeline easily with a free timeline creator that builds professional timelines quickly, right inside PowerPoint.    Timeline template made with timeline generator Office Timeline

Office tools do not manage timeline data or automate timelines.

To create a timeline with Visio or make a timeline with Excel is painful because neither are automated for this work like a timeline creator is.   A timeline creator or timeline generator is specifically set-up to create graphical images and to manage project schedules.  (project schedules are the dates and events that make up your project).  A timeline creator or timeline generator simplifies how this project schedule is used to make a timeline and how to update it easily.

The ability to continually make changes is important because project schedules frequently change.  For example if any of your milestones slip the timeline creator would automatically update the entire timeline.   Without the automation of a timeline creator, making even simple changes like this would require painful manual editing of the graphics for each Excel data point or Visio object.Project Schedule for timeline creator

Project tools are too complicated for presentations to clients and managers.

Heavy-weight project tools such as Microsoft Project, like a timeline creator, are also equipped to make a timeline or Gantt chart.  Although these tools are automated to manage project schedules elegantly, they are complicated to learn and too heavy for high-level presentations.  Since project software is not designed to be graphical, it is difficult to make timeline presentations that are suitable for reviews with staff, customers and executives.  These audiences expect a PowerPoint presentation.

Office Timeline is a free timeline creator that solves these problems.

The best solution for project presentations is a light-weight timeline generator that integrates into a familiar presentation tool like PowerPoint.  It should create a timeline template or Gantt chart natively in PowerPoint so it can be updated, shared and modified simply by any PowerPoint user.  The post below shows how to easily build a timeline, right from PowerPoint, with a free timeline creator called Office Timeline.

Follow these steps to make a timeline quickly. 

Download and install Office Timeline.  Once installed it will add an Office Timeline tab to your PowerPoint ribbon.

Step 1: From the ribbon click New to launch the timeline creator wizard which will guide you through easy set-up and design steps.Timeline creator ribbon in PowerPoint

Step 2: Browse through styles of timelines, Gantt charts and templates.   Select the style you would like to build, then click the Next arrow to style your timeline.Make a timeline in PowerPoint

Step 3:  Enter the key project milestones and tasks and set their dates or durations (in the Office Timeline Plus edition you can paste schedules directly from Excel).  Make some optional style choices such as changing the color or shape for each item.  When you have finished click the Next arrow to create a timeline.Timeline creator milestone wizardTimeline generator task wizard

Step 4: Choose how you want milestones, tasks, timeband, and scaling to be presented.Make a timeline in PowerPoint _Style WizardMake a timeline in PowerPoint _Scale Wizard

Step 5: Done, just click the green Check in the timeline creator to make a timeline slide that looks like this.Make a timeline template in PowerPoint with add-in from Office Timeline

You now have a professional looking timeline slide that will stand out in high-level presentations. At any time, you can make changes to the slide by simply clicking on the Milestone, Task or Style buttons on the timeline generator ribbon. This will re-access the wizards so you can quickly update your timeline, and easily change any of the design choices you made. Office Timeline will instantly rebuild your slide with those changes.

See a this short video of how it works.

Download Office Timeline Free Edition

Suggested Reading
Using timelines for IT projects
Exceptional PowerPoint Add-Ons
Steps for creating a Gantt chart in Excel

Steps for creating a Timeline in Excel 


Quickly turn project data into professional timelines

Build stunning, uncomplicated timelines and Gantt charts that are easy to make and simple to communicate. Get the advanced features of Office Timeline Plus free for 14 days.

GET FREE TRIAL

Quickly make a Pharmaceutical timeline slide in PowerPoint

In pharmaceutical and in clinical trials, making and presenting professional, high-level pharmaceutical timelines to big pharma management or pharmaceutical agencies is essential.  The pharmaceutical industry needs and depends on clear project timelines and Gantt charts that can be easily presented in PowerPoint so manufacturing plans and decisions can be made efficiently and effectively. The post below shows how to easily build and update a clinical trial timeline or pharmaceutical project timeline slide, right from PowerPoint, with a free PowerPoint add-in.
Pharmaceutical timeline or clinical trial timeline

Creating a pharmaceutical timeline or clinical trial timeline slide has been painful.

Creating a pharmaceutical timeline slide or gantt chart slide with the project software used in pharmaceutical manufacturing has been difficult. Heavyweight project applications do not have simple tools to create high-level project reviews needed for important presentations. They produce overly complex Gantt charts and timelines which are not suitable for clinical trial presentations or pharmaceutical manufacturing project reviews to management and agency executives.

On the other hand, tools like Microsoft Visio and Excel are time consuming because they are not automated for making the type of professional looking pharmaceutical timeline or clinical trial timeline that management expects to see.   This is further complicated as a clinical trial timeline or pharmaceutical timeline frequently needs updating when schedules change, requiring a complete rebuild of the timeline.

Finally, stand-alone timeline maker or timeline generator solutions are not integrated into Microsoft PowerPoint, making them difficult to share and present, and also inflexible when multiple team members need to collaborate on a timeline.

Office Timeline is a lightweight PowerPoint add-in that solves these problems.

Office Timeline makes it easy to create clinical trial timeline or pharmaceutical timeline slides, suitable for high-level presentations, proposals and project reviews.  It was created to make it very simple to design, build and update professional looking pharmaceutical timeline slides for reviews to executives and management.  Since it is a lightweight PowerPoint add-in, it can build clinical trial timeline slides natively in PowerPoint which means they are easy to edit, communicate and share with other project stakeholders.

See how it easily makes Pharmaceutical Timeline and Clinical Trial timeline slides

Here is a quick look at how it works. Download and install Office Timeline from here.  Once installed it will add an Office Timeline tab to your PowerPoint ribbon (see image below). Click New to launch the Office Timeline wizard which will guide you through a couple easy set-up and design steps.Timeline maker add-in for PowerPoint 1Select the type of gantt chart or timeline slide you want to build from several style types offered, then click the Next arrow to enter your pharmaceutical or clinical trial project schedule and to begin customize it.Timeline maker add-in for PowerPoint New Wizard

2. Enter the key project milestones and tasks of your Pharmaceutical Timeline andset their dates or durations (in the Office Timeline Plus edition you can paste schedules directly from excel).  Make some optional style choices such as changing the color or shape for each item.  When you have finished click the Next arrow to choose customizations for your Pharmaceutical manufacturing slide.Timeline maker Milestone Wizard in PowerPoint

Timeline Maker Task Wizard in PowerPoint

3. Make stylistic and design choices for how you want Milestones, Tasks, Timeband, and Scaling to show on a Pharmaceutical timeline or Clinical Trial timeline, then click the green Check to build your slide.Timeline Maker Style Wizard in PowerPoint

You are done and now have a professional looking pharmaceutical manufacturing timeline or clinical trial timeline slide that will stand out in high-level presentations. At any time, you can make changes to the slide by simply clicking on the Milestone, Task or Style buttons on the ribbon. This will re-access the wizards so you can quickly update your pharmaceutical project or clinical trial data, and easily change any of the design choices you made. Office Timeline will instantly rebuild your slide with those changes.Pharmaceutical timeline or clinical trial timeline

Download Office Timeline Free Edition

Suggested Reading
Tutorial for making a Gantt chart with Excel
Using Gantt diagrams for business planning
Steps for creating a Timeline in Excel
Exceptional PowerPoint add-ons

Suggested Video Tutorial
Cutting and pasting your project tables into PowerPoint


Quickly turn project data into professional timelines

Build stunning, uncomplicated timelines and Gantt charts that are easy to make and simple to communicate. Get the advanced features of Office Timeline Plus free for 14 days.

GET FREE TRIAL

Timeline Maker for Grant Managers using Grant Application Software

Last month I attended a workshop for Grant Managers.  It covered a wide range of topics ranging from writing a sponsorship proposal and grant administration to how to effectively manage funded projects with grant application software.   One observation I came away with is that grant management professionals are being required to provide increasingly more documentation concerning the distribution of project funds and tracking progress against the initial sponsorship proposal or charter.   I heard that the administrative tasks involved with gathering data, creating reports, holding status meetings, plus all other tasks has been increasing along with the ever higher need to communicate with colleagues, contractors, staff, funding agencies, and facilities managers.

My take-away was that more people needed clearly communicated information about status and the progress of funded projects.  I noticed in the workshop that the grant management process, including project reviews, are very often managed with Excel worksheets and similarly communicated as Excel tables in PowerPoint.  In discussing this at one of the break-out sessions, I learned that, although PowerPoint was frequently used, creating a grant management timeline slide for a project presentation is tough to do, even for those who had strong PowerPoint skills.

This is an area in which Office Timeline could help.  It is a free timeline maker embedded into Microsoft PowerPoint (2007, 2010, and 2013), so using it is intuitive and easy.  If you need to prepare the grant, compose a sponsorship proposal, or manage research projects, you can leverage Office Timeline to create visual, project timelines that will drive the narrative.

Any grant management professional needing to effectively communicate plans or funding status can use Office Timeline to quickly create and share slides that are easy for funding agencies and project teams to understand. It starts with a simple wizard, where a user chooses a template and Office Timeline guides them through the entire process, making the design and creation of project slides a quick and intuitive process.  I have captured the process in a series of screenshots below and would be interested in your experience with it.

Making a sponsorship proposal timeline template

Make a sponsorship proposal timeline in PowerPoint

Sponsorship proposal timeline template

Download Office Timeline Free Edition

Suggested Reading
Steps for making a timeline
Exceptional PowerPoint Add-Ons

Simplifying Gantts for important presentations

Suggested Video
Cutting and pasting your grant schedule into PowerPoint

 


Quickly turn project data into professional timelines

Build stunning, uncomplicated timelines and Gantt charts that are easy to make and simple to communicate. Get the advanced features of Office Timeline Plus free for 14 days.

GET FREE TRIAL

How to make an event plan in PowerPoint.

If you have ever organized an event or had to make an event proposal you know it is important to build the event plan in Excel, so you can manage all the details.  However, when it comes time to view or present your event plan or event proposal Excel is not suitable because it lacks the ability to make a graphical timeline.  PowerPoint is a more suitable tool for building graphical timelines of your event plan, however doing so has been time-consuming and slow.  That’s changed with the free Office Timeline plug-in for PowerPoint.

Office Timeline is a free plug-in for Microsoft PowerPoint 2007, 2010, and 2013 that quickly makes your event timelines.  Using it to create, manage and present an event plan or event proposal is intuitive and simple.  It starts with a simple wizard for entering the key tasks and milestones of your event plan or you can paste those directly from Excel(requires Plus edition). Then with a mouse click your plan is turned into a beautifully laid out PowerPoint timeline slide.  Once created, it is easy to edit and share the slide so planners can keep their team and vendors updated on progress and changes.

Here’s how to make an event plan or event proposal in PowerPoint.  First download and install free Office Timeline from http://officetimeline.com.  Once installed it will add a tab to your PowerPoint ribbon for creating and editing timelines. To create a new event plan slide, follow the 4 steps below.

1 – Click New to launch the Office Timeline wizards which will guide you through a couple easy set-up and design steps.

2 – Select the type of event timeline you want from pre-designed templates, then click the Next arrow to begin entering your event plan.

3 – Add the key milestones of your event plan or event proposal, choose the color and style for each milestone marker and then hit the Next arrow.Evetn Plan Milestones

4 – Add the key tasks of your event plan or event proposal, choose the color and shape you would like for each of your task bands.Event Plan Tasks

Finished.  Click the green Check Box and Office Timeline will build your event plan or event proposal as a timeline on a PowerPoint slide which you easily update, change and share with others.Event PlanDownload Office Timeline Free Edition

Suggested Reading
Steps for making an event timeline
Exceptional PowerPoint Add-Ons

How to paste event schedules into PowerPoint

Suggested Video Tutorial
Cut and paste Excel tables into PowerPoint

www.officetimeline.com

 


Quickly turn project data into professional timelines

Build stunning, uncomplicated timelines and Gantt charts that are easy to make and simple to communicate. Get the advanced features of Office Timeline Plus free for 14 days.

GET FREE TRIAL

How to reposition Task Dates for a cleaner slide

Get a free license for Office Timeline

You have a lot to say when presenting your project timeline. The adage of too much information rings true as your slide is populated with titles and dates. (To change the timescale of your project’s timeband, see this blog on timeband scales.)

Follow these few steps to improve the clarity of the information on the slide.

1.Prepare your milestone and task data to create a project timeline that looks something like this for example.

2.Next, select Date Format on the Office Timeline ribbon to choose a more compact date style for your tasks (and milestones).

3.Finish adding clarity to the presentation slide by using the Task tools to split the dates and position the text above or below the task arrows.

 

Are you running the latest version? Check our Release Update site here .


Quickly turn project data into professional timelines

Build stunning, uncomplicated timelines and Gantt charts that are easy to make and simple to communicate. Get the advanced features of Office Timeline Plus free for 14 days.

GET FREE TRIAL