There is no the best way to input and structure tasks suitably for all the users. Following the two approaches, are typical for use and are natural.
Inputting tasks one by one
Input the task name, date, work and all the other properties of one task, then to input for another task
Focus on one aspect of all the tasks at a time point
Prepare the list for all tasks –> Construct task tree –> Input the date of all the tasks -> Input resource for all the tasks –> Other aspects one by one
If you are very familiar with the project (for example, you have long experience of managing similar projects), the first approach may be suitable
We recommend to follow the second approach, as usually, it is more efficient and with less re-work
First, we need to know what tasks the project has to do. Input while thinking is a common way of working at the beginning of the project, however, based on the consideration of input efficiency while reducing modification, we prefer to recommend having a task list ready before input
In general, for small projects, it may be sufficient to have a task list in mind; for large projects or complex projects, it is better to use a tool to list tasks
Mindmap is the suitable tool for us to think what to do and to prepare the list. We can use it to prepare the task names in a tree structure, QuickPlan supports to open Mindmap file (in OPML format) to create a new project.
Of course, preparing the task list in an excel file, or in a plain text file, and even on a paper is also the way which is helpful
Input the tasks continuously, then change the task outline level to construct the tree structure, if needed, we can move the task up / down to adjust task sequence.
There is an option to control the default date of the new tasks - to specify if to keep the date of the new task be same as the previous task, or the start of the new task will be same as the finish of the previous task
Select a task
Mouse click on a task, or double-click the empty space in a task row on Gantt Chart
To be more efficient, we suggest to switch selecting task by keyboard shortcuts - “d” or “↓” key to select next task, “e” or “↑” key to select the previous task
Or press the "indent" and "outdent" buttons on the Touch Bar
On the iOS devices, QuickPlan supports to change task outline level by "swift left/right" gestures, which are more intuitive and efficient. For this step (to adjust the outline level of all the project tasks), for some projects, our practice is to sync the project with iPad (or transfer to iPad), and complete this step on the iPad
Click the “task link” button on the toolbar, then to follow the tips (which moves with the mouse) to link tasks
QuickPlan for macOS provides various methods to change the task date and duration – please select the most efficient and suitable way for the situation. Familiarizing ourselves with these methods in advance will be of great help in improving our work efficiency
For example, how many methods to change the task start date? Below please check the methods
Edit the task "Start" column in Outline panel
Mouse gestures to change task date on Gantt Chart
Change start date on the Updating Panel
Select the "start" cell of a task, and change the start date via Touch Bar buttons
Skill to change the task start date efficiently. If the target date is close to the the current start date, tapping on touch bar will be much more quickly than selecting a new date using other common ways. For example to change the task start date to be two days later, just tap the “+ 1d” button on Touch Bar two times, if to change the task start date to be 11 days later, just tap the “+ 10d” and “+ 1d”.
Then another question for you - using QuickPlan how many methods we can use to change the task duration? Click to check the anwser
By changing task finish date
By changing task duration
QuickPlan does the best to provide as many methods of operation as possible, some of them are effecitive, someo of them are intuitive. There is no the best method for all the case, it's up to our experience and how familiar we are with using the operations.
To work efficiently, one fundamental principle is to "avoid keyboard inputting". We recommnd the high efficient input by "using mouse click or keyboard shortcut". QuickPlan provides the additional options to use selecting (simple one click) to replace keyboard input, even in the number input window. For example in duration input window, there are some buttons for us to change the duration quickly.
Change task duration AFTER task start date be changed.
In comparison, most tasks have shorter cycles, the keyboard shortcut "⌘1…9" and "⌘⌥1…9" and duration buttons on the Touch Bar are very helpful to modify task duration efficiently
If a task has a date that is far from the start of the project, and we want to move the task to a date that is not far from the start of the project. "⇧⌘ ←" is a good start to move the task to be at project start date, and then use "⇧→" to the target date
When updating date and duration on the updating panel, we recommend to use one hand to change the selected tasks, and to use another hand to operate by mouse on the updating panel
In some cases, it can be very efficient to change the task date by copying it. For example, in a task group, some child tasks at beginning of Jan, some other tasks at beginning of Feb. We can move the task group to Jan 1, and change the start date of a task to Feb 1, then copy the cell (Feb 1) to other tasks which target date is at Feb, and with keyboard shortcut, we can get the work be done very quickly
Then switch to other aspects, such as resoruce, work, cost, using similar skills for the aspect of task date and duration. We suggest to take enough practices if need to be more efficient