Microsoft Project Tutorial: How to Add Milestone Task in MS Project

Milestones are signs of tiny diamonds that mark important events in Microsoft Project. Milestones can be defined as approval, completion of key deliverables, an important event or the beginning or end of a project phase in MS Project.

Milestones will also remind you and your team members to keep track of the project progress, which helps keep the team motivated.

How to add a milestone with 0 duration in MS Project

To add a milestone task in Microsoft Project, click View and select Gantt Chart view.

Milestone task in MS Project

Type the name of a milestone you want to create in the Task Name column, or you can select the task you want to convert to a milestone.

In the example, the milestone is named as ‘Milestone1’.

Milestone task in MS Project

To add a milestone in Microsoft Project, indicate that the duration of the task is 0. Enter 0 to quickly create a milestone in the Duration column and press Enter: now the milestone will be added to the Gantt Chart.

Milestone task in MS Project

How to add a milestone with duration

If you want to add a milestone with a duration of 1 day or more, select the milestone you want to add from the Task Name column and right-click on the milestone task.

Milestone task in MS Project

Click on the Information to display the Task Information window. Click on Advanced and set the Duration to 1 day or more.

Milestone task in MS Project

Tick Mark task as milestone and then click OK to continue.

Milestone task in MS Project

On the Gantt Chart view, the milestone is added as Milestone2 with a duration of 1 day.

Milestone task in MS Project

How to add a summary task in Microsoft Project

In Microsoft Project, a summary task that is also called a parent task is a collection of subtasks that shows their combined information. The indented tasks or following tasks of the summary task are called subtasks.

The summary task is shown in bold in the project outline.

To create a subtask or a summary task in Microsoft project, Click on Task and then select Gantt Chart view. 

Milestone task in MS Project

In the Gantt Chart view in Microsoft Project, click on the task you want to make a subtask, then click Indent.

In the example, Task2 is a subtask of the above Task1 that in its turn will be a parent or summary task to Task2.

Milestone task in MS Project

Task3 is also a subtask. Task1 is a summary or parent task to Task2 and Task3.

Milestone task in MS Project

Another way to add a summary task

To create a summary or parent task in MS Project, click on a task that will be a subtask and then click on Summary

Milestone task in MS Project

In the following figure, a new task is added as a parent task. The selected task (Task4) will be marked as a subtask.

Milestone task in MS Project

There are some key features of using a summary task:

  • When you move or delete it, MS Project moves or deletes all its subtasks. Move or indent the subtasks to the left if you want to keep them before deleting the summary task.
  • You can change the duration of a summary task without changing each subtask. But be careful – changing the duration of the summary task does not necessarily change the duration of the subtask.
  • Avoid assigning resources to summary tasks. Assign them to subtasks, or you may not be able to resolve assignments or overallocation.
  • Summary tasks don’t always add up. Some summary task values ​​(cost and work) are the sum of subtask values, and others (duration and baseline) are not.

How to show a summary task in Microsoft Project

Summary or parent tasks can be shown in the task list.

In Microsoft Project 2016, click on the Format tab, Show/Hide section, and check the Summary Tasks box.

Summary tasks in MS Project

How to hide a summary task in Microsoft Project

Summary or Parent Tasks can be hidden in the task list.

In Microsoft Project 2016, Click on the Format tab, Show/Hide, and uncheck the Summary Tasks box.

Summary tasks in MS Project

How to hide/show subtasks of a summary task in Microsoft Project

In Microsoft Project, when the subtasks are shown, a small minus (-) sign appears on the left side of a summary task.

When you click on a plus (+) sign on the left side of a summary task, it expands to show its all subtasks, and the summary task adds a minus (-) to its left.

Summary tasks in MS Project

When the subtasks are hidden, a small plus (+) sign appears on the left side of a summary task.

When you click on a plus (+) sign on the left side of a summary task, it shows its subtasks, and the summary task adds a minus (-) to its left.

Summary tasks in MS Project

How to add a milestone in GanttPRO

In GanttPRO online Gantt chart generator, it is very easy to add and work with milestones. To add it, simply click on Add a milestone in the project grid in a place you need it and name it right here.

That’s it! The milestone will be added to your Gantt chart.

How to work with tasks in GanttPRO

On the right side of each task, you will find three dots. Just left-click on it and you will see the options for adding different kinds of tasks: a subtask, a sibling task, a child milestone, a sibling milestone, indent, outdent, etc. All these options are intuitive.

From this dialogue box, you can even convert your tasks to milestones.

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