Wednesday, October 15, 2008

The Underappreciated SharePoint Issue List

Way back when we were first developing IntelliGantt we had to decide which SharePoint web part IntelliGantt would work with. Because it focuses on project management the obvious web part was (and still is) the Task List.

However, I still remember that day when someone from a theater group in Florida called and gave me an eye-opening demonstration of how they were using the Issues List to manage their day-to-day tasks. True, it may not have a Gantt (or does it? :), and it's not really for project management and heck, there's no difference between an issue and a task, right?

Right, there's not much difference between an issue and a task. So the question basically turned from us asking users 'how about using a task list' to users asking us 'how about using an issue list'? For instance, there's a great versioning feature with an Issue List that let's anyone see not just that an issue is resolved, but an accompanying history showing HOW it was resolved.

This is useful.

So we ehanced IntelliGantt to recognize the SharePoint Issue List and voila, here it is in action:




Perhaps you're thinking 'great, but I really like the Gantt Chart view that comes with the Task List'. Ah, we didn't forget about you. When you use IntelliGantt to work with an Issue List, IntelliGantt incorporates the same fields the Gantt Chart view native to WSS 3.0 and MOSS uses. For example, in the above demo you'll notice that IntelliGantt added a few fields to the Issue List-- most importantly a Start Date and % Complete-- to go along with the Due Date that was already there.

It turns out these are exactly the fields a Gantt View requires in order to display. So, after connecting with an Issue List, IntelliGantt prepares it for a Gantt View automatically. The end result, based on the demo above, looks like this:



I just have to take a moment to say 'That's pretty cool!'

You can download the new IntelliGantt Add In for Microsoft Project and try it out yourself.

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