How to Teach the Ins and Outs of Microsoft Project 2013

Kim Mays

Project managers from many enterprises are familiar with Microsoft Project. It’s pretty much the most popular mid-range project management platform used around the globe. Users of G2 Crowd review site rank it at 3.8 out of 5 stars.

The software allows project management professionals (PMPs) to collaborate with teams in other locations. PMPs can track timesheets, budgets and timelines for anyone on the project and flag spots where issues could arise. It’s also possible to see at-a-glance whether appropriate progress is being made on an individual project. It supports the creation of Gantt charts and the presentation features are on par with other MS Office applications.

However, for those who aren’t as familiar with project management software or Microsoft Office, the platform can be a bit difficult to master. Often users require training, and perhaps even guided experience before they can truly appreciate the usefulness of the features provided.

For trainers or help desk professionals who are required to bring project management users up to speed on Microsoft Project 2013, it would be nice to have a guide or lesson plan to hand out. In our IT Downloads area, you will find just such a document in our “Microsoft Project 2013 Cheat Sheet,” from CustomGuide.

The Cheat Sheet covers everything from the basic screen layout to balancing projects. The sheet provides a screen shot of Project 2013 with labels for items on the menu bar and panes. Various sections included in the document are:

  • Common views
  • Fundamentals
  • Keystroke shortcuts
  • Plan and manage the project
  • Working with resources and costs
  • Working with tasks
  • Viewing the project
  • Tracking progress
  • Balancing the project

Users can refer to the sheet to learn the main features and functions of Project 2013, but the sheet is also helpful for those intermediate users who occasionally need a refresher on specific shortcuts and tabs.

Trainers or support staff can use the PDF projected on screen to introduce the features and important sections while training. They can also print out individual pages to hand out to users for desktop use. It can save time and a lot of headaches for anyone working with the complex Microsoft platform.

Kim Mays has been editing and writing about IT since 1999. She currently tackles the topics of small to midsize business technology and introducing new tools for IT. Follow Kim on Google+ or Twitter.

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