A Gantt chart is a project plan and one of the most useful project management tools to visualize the required tasks and their respective duration to finish a project. In the article you will learn how to build a Gantt Chart in Excel in a couple of minutes. So let´s get started:

How to build a Gantt Chart in Excel step by step

First, create a table that list all your tasks of the project with the tasks start dates and the duration of the tasks. For example like the following table (you can download this row data and other samples at our Excel exercises page).

Task Start date Duration (days)
Task1 09.06.16 10
Task 2 15.06.16 4
Task 3 16.06.16 6
Task 4 16.06.16 12
Task 5 16.06.16 14
Task 6 19.06.16 5
Task 7 27.06.16 4
Task 8 27.06.16 10
Task 9 30.06.16 10
Task 10 04.07.16 1
Task 11 05.07.16 35
Task 12 21.07.16 40

Build a bar chart

Next, add a blank bar chart (second chart in the first row of the menu),

build a project plan in Excel (Gantt Chart)

then right click into it and choose select data

project plan Excel

Click add series and enter the Start date fields

Gantt Chart Excel

Next repeat the previous steps with the duration and replace the numbers on the axis with the task name

Gantt Chart Excel

Now, click Ok to close light box. Next click on the left axis and select “format axis” Then check the box axis in reverse order.

Hide Start Date bars

Right click on blue bars and select no fill and no line for the date bars.

Adjust time axis

Get the numerical value (click on start date in table and change the cell format to number; copy that number and change the format back to date). Enter the numerical value as your minimum value for your axis.

Clean up

  • Remove lines and white spaces
  • Click on bars and set separated to 100% and gap width to 10%
  • Change the color of the bars to your requirements

Done, that´s how you can easily create a Gantt chart in Excel to manage your projects. As a result you should get a project plan in Excel that should like the following Gantt chart:

How to build a project plan in Excel (Gantt Chart)