Project Management Tools Excel Free: All You Need To Know, Types, and Free Tools To Use

Project management tools Excel free
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Despite having numerous potent tools, free Excel won’t meet all of your project management demands. Price shock has probably happened to you once or twice if you’ve ever looked for Excel project management software or a course. These programs or tools are pricey and could run you several thousand dollars annually. It’s enough to make one think about merely using an Excel template and project management tools to do the task, which is actually not a bad notion. Although Excel isn’t advertised as a project planner, the platform is more capable than most people know when it comes to tracking projects. In this article, we will be talking about the project task list template excel.

Project Management Tools Excel

Excel has a lot of strong tools, but it won’t meet all of your project management demands. This article explains how to utilize the program to its full potential for smaller projects.

You’ve likely encountered sticker shock once or twice if you’ve ever looked for project management software. These software systems are pricey, possibly costing several thousand dollars annually. It’s enough to make one consider simply employing some Excel templates to complete the task, which isn’t always a bad idea. Although Excel isn’t advertised as a project planner, the platform is more capable than most people know when it comes to tracking projects.

However, will an Excel project tracker suffice for you, or do you require a platform made especially for project management? Before you make that choice, you should be aware of the following information about Excel project management.

Does Excel Have a Project Management Tool?

Excel may be used for project management, to put it simply. To be honest, though, it’s not the best option.

Why Do You Inquire?

If you’ve ever tried to manage a project management tool using an Excel worksheet or template with intricate formulas, conditional formatting, and macros only to watch it combust and crash, you know it’s painful. In other words, managing projects with MS Excel is like slicing a cake with a saw. It can do the task, but there is a better approach. Although you can make Gantt charts, project management tools, progress reports, and even track budget templates, Excel is so manual that you’ll lose a lot of time and run the chance of making a mistake.

In addition:

  • Real-time collaboration with team members is not possible.
  • Effective communication is impossible.
  • Several processes cannot be automated for numerous projects.
  • It is not safe

The free Excel template is, in short, adequate for project management tools. But is “fine” acceptable in your line of work? But you came here to learn more about Excel, not to hear us rant about why it’s a poor idea. Therefore, there are a few ways you can use free project management tools and templates to simplify your life if you must or choose to use Excel for any reason.

How Do I Use Excel to Manage a Project?

When it comes to management, administration, analysis, planning, computations, and much more, the free Excel project tools are the tools that are utilized the most in every business. Excel is without a doubt the go-to tool for project management, supported by its convenient grid formats, the capacity to filter and formulate every type of data, and its user-friendly interface. For several areas of project management, Excel can be more difficult, especially for novices.

Project Management Tools Excel Template

Excel’s free templates are one of its few redeeming qualities. Basically, you can alter any free excel template for project management tools in their gallery to your needs by just plugging it in. Let’s talk about a few of the most popular project management tools and excel template.

#1. A Task Manager

The project management tools tracker template will serve as our introduction to Excel templates. It allows you to track the overall development of your projects, classify them according to the allocated employee, and view task status. Additionally, it has a built-in calculator that allows you to arrange your project using conditional data.

#2. Burndown Graph

Burndown charts are two-axis, physical graphs that show whether or not your project is on schedule or behind schedule. They help you monitor your team’s performance more closely and anticipate delays before they happen. A burndown chart can also be used as a kind of budget template to track metrics such as actual spending vs. baseline budget. Although burndown chart templates aren’t specifically provided by Excel, we chose to include them in our list because they’re so straightforward.

#3. Gantt Chart

Gantt charts are attractive visual tools for displaying your project schedule. They are really the third most popular feature for project management software, according to Capterra. Using the Gantt chart template in Excel, you can create one rather quickly. Your projects can be divided into phases, tasks, and team members.

#4. To-Do List

Only three hours a day are actually productive for the majority of office workers.

How does this affect you?

Employees typically waste so much time productively because they don’t prioritize their duties to focus on the most critical ones first. For this reason, to-do lists are useful. You may make a to-do list that is both functional and pleasant to the eye using this template.

#5. Project Status Reporting

According to research by UK-based portfolio management company Wellington, status reporting is the most common task carried out by PMOs. And with good cause. Managers and important stakeholders must be aware of a project’s progress. Use this template to track and share project progress over the course of a year.

Does Excel Have a Project Plan Template? 

Yes, there are several project plan templates available in Excel. We’ve sorted through them all and found the best project plan templates in Excel. In this article, we explained the different types of templates and when you should use each one. 

How Do I Track the Progress of a Project in Excel?

Users of Microsoft Excel can make a list of tasks that they can use to keep tabs on their progress or take an Excel for Project Management course. These kinds of lists might help you or your team stay on task as you work on various projects. You may increase your output as a professional and your general productivity by learning how to use an Excel task tracker.

To build and use a trackable to-do list in Excel, follow these five steps:

#1. Launch Excel and Make the Necessary Column Headers

As soon as the Excel for Project Management course is open, you can start making new column headers with the names of the elements you wish to track. These are typically the primary components of your tasks, and some typical ones include:

Task ID: By assigning each task an ID, you’ll be able to access it quickly in the future. Sharing tasks with coworkers can be helpful as it can prevent any misconceptions when referring to a certain assignment.

Task name: Although the ID can help you recognize a task quickly, giving it a suitable name can help you remember it. Keep task names brief and include a description box with further details if possible.

Noting when tasks are due will help you keep on track and meet deadlines. This is helpful for completing numerous tasks quickly.

Task owner: Adding a task owner column to your task tracker might help you keep track of everyone’s tasks if your task tracker contains tasks for numerous people. Additionally, it helps if you’re in charge of overseeing a team because you can control how they operate and progress on a project.

Task status: You can add a column to show how each task is progressing precisely. Depending on the precise nature of the work, you can use it to indicate whether a task has not yet been started, is in progress, or has been completed, as well as other conceivable states.

Task importance: A key component of task monitoring and management typically involves assigning jobs a priority based on their overall value for a project. By including a task significance column and grading your tasks appropriately, you can accomplish that.

For information about your jobs that is not immediately clear to provide in other columns, you may also insert a column.

#2. Complete Each Task’s Details

The columns can now be filled with data after being created. List all pending tasks first, along with their completion status, as these are the two key factors that will enable you to organize your tasks later. You can add tasks to your task tracker as you learn more about them, such as their deadline and priority.

#3. Include a Filter

A filter can be used to weed through irrelevant data. This is very beneficial for managing numerous task entries. By choosing “filter” from the “Sort & Filter” menu on the Excel taskbar, you may add a filter to your spreadsheet. You can choose to remove all the tasks you’ve previously finished by selecting the “Task Status” column and adding a filter, for instance. This will give you a clearer perspective on your unfinished chores.

#4. Sort and Order Your Tasks Using the Filter

After putting one in place, you can use a filter to follow the progress of your unfinished tasks. You can now sort your tasks based on what you want to view at any given time if you apply a filter to your “Task status” column. The tasks you haven’t started working on yet, the ones you are working on right now, the jobs you have finished, or any other mix of these categories, are all easier to observe as a result.

#5. Keep Utilizing Your Task Manager

You can utilize your task tracker to help you manage your tasks now that you’ve established one. If you want to draw attention to additional aspects of your tasks, you can add more columns, and you can update the fields that are already there to better describe what they stand for. To make it easier for you to see how each work is progressing toward completion, you may also use various colors for each column or state.

Project Management Tools Excel Free 

Excel provides a lot of project management tools, which are mostly free of charge. A lot of them will be exposed in this article. Ensure you go through the article to see it all.

Project Management Excel Templates Free

Five free Microsoft Excel templates for project management that are tailored to specific project types or project stages have been developed. Do you require a place to keep track of your project’s costs and ensure budget adherence? Perhaps you need free excel templates for project management for brief status updates that you can deliver to your team each week. As a central repository for all project-related data, these templates can serve as your schedule, budget, and tracking. By streamlining the procedure, you’ll lower your chance of missing important possibilities. See them listed below.

#1. Project Status Report Template

You’ll want to stay organized so your updates stay on schedule, whether your project status reports are delivered by email or during a meeting. Keep a project status report template in your pocket so you can replicate it each week and add pertinent information. To save you and your team time, just plug modifications into an existing template. What achievements did your group make? Call out these people and praise them. Do you have any risks or problems that need to be resolved? This is the spot to list potential obstacles and provide fixes. Give your team and the company leadership updates using the project status template.

Organize this template further by saving it for later use. What went wrong and what functioned well can be evaluated. Templates for project status can be modified to fit your particular work situation.

#2. Group Project Task Template

Consider the task template for your group project as a high-level overview of all the tasks and subtasks that are involved in the project. Divide it into sections that correspond to the project’s stages. List the stakeholders, due dates, and priorities of each assignment. Permit project task updates from stakeholders, including start and end dates, percentage completion, and when a task is finished. Use this template to determine who is in charge of which resource. This document can be used by interested parties to find answers to their inquiries or to find out who they will be working closely with.

Here is where you can use the group project task template creatively. Place this timeline next to your project plan so you can compare progress and emphasize little accomplishments.

#3. Action Item Template

Every project has a prioritized set of tasks that must be completed in order to meet benchmarks and end goals. You may give these action items a visual representation in your workflow by adding an action item template. These actions can be classified as high, medium, or low priorities in your template. You could specify deadlines and the parties in charge. The action item template can be set up for one stage of the project or tailored to the tasks of one team, depending on the size of your project.

The action item template is useful for outlining which tasks are dependent on the accomplishment of others. It provides a comprehensive overview of how tasks are related during the course of a project.

#4. Gantt Chart Template

This is a template that can be useful if your team members are visual learners. A Gantt Chart uses color-coded bars positioned on a horizontal calendar view to visually describe project phases, stakeholders, and activities. Per team or individual stakeholder, pick one color. You may track its progress as each task is displayed on the project’s timeline calendar. Another option is a list view, which displays tasks in a more conventional order.

Combining these two layouts can give each stakeholder the impression that they can follow the project in the method that is most convenient for them. Give users the choice of a more appealing style for your project tracking if the standard list layout is undesirable.

#5. Project Budget Template

Almost all projects, regardless of how big or small, will have a budget. The budget for a project is absolutely not the place for mistakes or misunderstandings. Furthermore, to prevent huge unplanned costs at the conclusion of the project, it is crucial to keep track of spending throughout. Layout anticipated costs in the template at the beginning of the project. Divide them according to the project stage, the team, or whatever else makes sense for your project. Then, use the template as a reference to keep track of different expenses and confirm that they line up with your estimates.

This is a simple and quick way to check your finances. Additionally, you’ll receive a prompt warning if you run the risk of going over your budget. You may make sure that the team is aware of your financial expectations by using a uniform budget template.

Project Task List Template Excel

The Excel task list template for the project in this article shows just a few of the numerous ways you can keep track of chores with a spreadsheet, from straightforward to-do lists to more intricate Gantt charts. These templates show how to represent priorities using icon sets, display a progress bar using conditional formatting, create the chart using stacked bar charts, and check off tasks when they are finished using a check mark.

#1 Project Task List Template

This spreadsheet shows how conditional formatting can be used to highlight the Priority column, add a progress bar to the % Complete column, and utilize data validation to build a working check box. Additionally, columns for money and hours spent on each assignment are included.

#2. Simple Task Tracker Template

This excel task tracker template is another list in the project that shows how to use conditional formatting to display a priority rating of 1-4 with different colored circles using custom icon sets. A similar method is applied to the checkbox in the Done column

#3. Project Task List with Gantt Chart

Using a stacked bar chart in Excel, a Gantt chart can be produced from a task list in the project excel template. Although this is a useful list in an excel template that can be applied to actual project management task, its main goal is to show how the data table is organized in order to build the Gantt chart.

#4. Task Checklist Template

This project task list in an excel template, shows how to build a checkbox using a data validation drop-down and how to display HIGH, MEDIUM, and LOW priority values using straightforward conditional formatting conditions. When the checkbox is selected, conditional formatting is also used to alter the typeface to a gray strikethrough.

Why Is Excel Bad for Project Management?

Here are some of the reasons why Excel is bad for project management:

#1. Takes a long time

It can be easy to waste time looking for, updating, and double-checking project information, depending on the size and complexity of individual projects, as well as the number of projects you are managing or participating in.

You’ll need to search elsewhere for important papers like the project statement and status reports because Excel is only appropriate for specific types of data. It is impossible to get a full, comprehensive understanding of the project, including important choices.

#2. Inaccurate Project Data

Spreadsheets are prone to mistakes, particularly when used by several team members. You cannot be certain that the spreadsheet you are using is the most recent version, that the formulas are accurate, or that no data has been inadvertently modified or erased. For highly regulated businesses like finance or healthcare, this ambiguity is a tremendous burden.

Spreadsheets saved in several locations result in inconsistent data being stored in various silos. The project might be placed on hold for a few weeks if someone saves the lone copy of a crucial document to their local computer and then forgets to share it before going on vacation. Lack of ownership, which allows for several users but no one responsible for verifying the data’s accuracy, adds to these issues.

#3. It’s Challenging to Monitor a Project’s Progress

As you probably have suspected, Excel is not the best project reporting tool. When information is dispersed throughout several files, it is simple to forget about deadlines, hazards, or allotted resources. This limits project visibility and hinders the ability to make well-informed decisions.

#4. Excessive Information

Different stakeholders and team members require various types of information. Excel does not support the creation of custom views with different levels of administration. The spreadsheet is visible to everyone. As a result, more time is lost trying to determine what is important for their jobs.

#5. A Lack of Teamwork

Key collaborative functions like task lists, discussion boards, file sharing, and dialogue tracking are not available in Excel. It is difficult for team members to simply verify the status of a task or determine what has to be done next. They are unaware of the project’s general state or whether a teammate is having difficulty with a particular assignment.

Why Do Project Managers Use Excel Instead of MS Project?

Excel is frequently used for project management since it is a well-liked program and is widely utilized by businesses, institutions, and a variety of other organizations. People are therefore familiar with it. Managers strive to use it for project management since it is adaptable, while also trying to avoid spending money on extra software.

What are the Excel for Project Management Course?

There are a lot of courses available online teaching how to use Excel for project management. This Excel for Project Management course is ideal for people looking to work on projects. Some courses in Excel for Project Management are usually divided into three main modules: Planning and Budgeting, Tracking, and Reporting. Furthermore, the Excel course gives the ideal mix of skills to deliver the analytical and reporting work in project management.

The aim is to systematically teach you how to tackle the different problems involved in the project management excel course with the help of real-life case studies. Some of the excel project management course are available on Udemy, Microsoft Office courses, Coursera, etc. This particular course provides the skills, knowledge, and confidence to work in a project management role using Excel.

What are the Uses of Excel Tools?

With Excel’s time-saving capabilities, you can get more done in less time, even when dealing with enormous data or doing complex computations. In addition, data collection, entry, storage, classification, and analysis can be performed rapidly with the help of a variety of technologies. Completing sophisticated computations that boost productivity requires a high level of expertise.

What Are 3 Files or Tools That You Can Build in Excel?

  • Filter and calculate with tables
  • Isolate variable data in a data area
  • Exception reporting with conditional formatting

What Are the Main Features of Excel?

Microsoft Excel’s primary functions include tabular data sorting, pivot table insertion, formula addition, and the calculation of massive data sets.


Effective project management requires organization and progress tracking. Many organizations use Excel to coordinate budgets, timelines, and resources and track project progress. You may use some of the list of template for Excel task for project management by studying their benefits and features. This post explains the benefits of using spreadsheets for project management and offers tips on how to manage your next Excel project.

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