updated on September 1, 2023
You need to create a simple Gantt chart, and you need it yesterday. You don’t want to bother with installing (and learning!) complex tools. All you want is to get it done fast, and get it done right so you can showcase your project.
If this is you, you’re in the right place: in this guide, we’ll show you how to quickly make a Gantt chart online for free, while also going through a few basics and best practices you might find useful.
Let’s get started.
When do you create an online Gantt chart?
You need a Gantt chart whenever your project requires more planning than a simple to-do list. Gantt charts are visually appealing and do a great job in adding clarity to complicated data, so they can be used all throughout the project’s life cycle. Once you learn how to make a Gantt chart properly, it can help with planning, task automation, and tracking as well.
Besides the above, an online Gantt chart comes with extra perks, as it’s often collaborative, shareable, more user-friendly and simpler overall than one made with the standard project management tools that you need to install on your computer. So, when:
- you’re pressed for time
- want to collaborate with others on the same visual
- or you need to showcase your project to external audiences
… that’s when you should make a Gantt chart online.
What program do you use to make a Gantt chart?
There’s a variety of Gantt tools out there that are worth looking into. Some are paid, others are free; some are online, others are on-premise (and others offer both); some are more complex and feature-rich, others are fast and simple.
With so many options available, how do you choose from the best Gantt chart makers? Well, it really depends on your specific needs. Since you’re in a hurry, we’d recommend trying out Office Timeline Online, a quick, free, and hassle-free online Gantt chart maker. We’ll show you exactly how it works below.
How do I make a Gantt chart online for free?
To quickly make a Gantt chart online free of charge, first access Office Timeline’s web app, which is a simple tool that will help you build your visual in minutes, without you having to install anything or create an account.
After you access Office Timeline Online, all you need to do is follow these three simple steps and, in a matter of minutes, you’ll have your first Gantt chart all done and ready to be presented to your stakeholders.
1. Add your Gantt chart data
With Office Timeline, you have 3 options to create a Gantt chart online and add your project data to it. You can:
- start it from scratch and manually add tasks and milestones
- start from one of the built-in templates to save time on customizations
- import data from tools like Microsoft Excel or Project to get your visual ready almost instantly.
All options are simple ways to make a Gantt chart online for free, but, for the purpose of this guide, we’ll choose to use a template from the built-in gallery. To do this, choose the option From template in the New tab, select a free design you like, and then click Use:
The free Gantt chart creator will open the template in the Data view, where you can replace the existing data with your own, add or remove tasks, show task status, and make a few quick customizations too (e.g. changing task colors and shapes):
Quick tip: Office Timeline helps you can make a Gantt chart online fast without registration, but with a free account, you gain access to cool perks such as assigning users to your chart, collaboration, and more.
2. Style your online Gantt chart
Once you’re done setting up your data, you can move over to the Timeline tab, which shows your online Gantt chart on a slide and allows you to customize it further.
Here, you can add a title and footnotes to your visual slide, or use the Style Pane on the right-side of the screen to:
- quickly change any color, font or shape
- adjust shape sizes and spacing
- add extras such as % Complete, task connectors, or Today marker
- reposition task names, dates, and other details
- customize the timescale’s units, tiers, colors and fonts
Quick tip: With a free account, you can also upload a logo, so you can make an online Gantt chart that truly stands out and showcases your company brand.
3. Easily adjust and update your Gantt chart by drag & drop
Office Timeline not only allows you to quickly make a Gantt chart online free of charge – adjusting and updating your visual is incredibly simple too. Using drag & drop, you can reposition any object or text, move the whole visual higher or lower on the slide, and even update task and milestone dates or change task durations.
See how easy it is to move things around with the free online Gantt chart generator:
Getting the most out of your brand-new Gantt chart
Now that you’ve managed to build a Gantt chart online so quickly, you can download it as a PNG image without registration, or you can create a free Office Timeline Online account to export your visual as an editable PowerPoint slide or an Excel spreadsheet.
A free account will also allow you to save all your online Gantt charts in your own web gallery. Plus, it unlocks sharing and collaboration too, so that you and your colleagues or stakeholders can review and update project visuals together – anytime, from anywhere.