When working in a project, you want to make sure your tasks are starting and ending at the right times, so your workers are starting and finishing their work at the right time.
To view the start time of your task, you can hover directly over the start date of that task:
As you can see, this task starts on February 7th, 2022, at 9am.
There are two basic ways that start time can get set in Project:
By setting the start date of a task
By setting the duration of a task
This article will cover how these default times differ & how you can ensure that your tasks are scheduled for the correct times.
Setting the start date
When you set the start date of a task, Project sets the start time of your task by using the project’s calendar.
In the first example above, the project was using the Default Work Template, which is the default calendar for most projects in Project for the web (however your default work hour template may be different depending on your organization). This template defines your calendar as Monday-Friday, 9am-5pm. Therefore, when I create a task and set the start date, it schedules the task to start at 9am.
I have also created another template in my organization called EightToFour Template, which defines a calendar as Sunday-Thursday, 8am – 4pm. I’ve decided to change my project’s calendar to that template.
After setting the new calendar template, I’ll create a new task and set the start date of the task to 2/14. When I now hover over that task, I see that the task starts at 8am:
When setting the start date, Project looked at its calendar to confirm that the date was a valid start date in the project & fetch the day’s start time. This resulted in a task that starts at the time defined by the calendar.
Setting the duration
In the same project, I will create another task & set the duration of that task before setting any of the other date information. Note that this project is still using the EightToFour Template, meaning that the calendar days start at 8am.
When I now hover over the task, I see that it is scheduled to start at 9am:
This task has been scheduled according to the default start time of all tasks in Project.
Project has set 9am as the default start time of all tasks. This field cannot be edited by users and does not get updated when you change the calendar of a project. When you set the duration of your task, Project does not look at the calendar to confirm the start time of the task and instead just schedules the task for that default start time of 9am.
Thus, if you want to make sure your tasks are scheduled at the correct start time according to your WHT, you should always set the start date of the task, instead of scheduling a set duration for that task.
If you have any questions or comments, you can always leave us feedback in the comments below or by creating a post on aka.ms/projfeedback.
Please let us know what tips & tricks you would like us to discuss in our next blog post!