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Chapter 5. Creating a Task List > Outlining the Task List

Outlining the Task List

Outlining is Microsoft Project’s method of organizing the details of a project into groups of activities that correspond to the major phases of a project, and it is the equivalent of the traditional WBS (refer to Figures 5.1 and 5.2). Each task has an outline number, which Project calculates by using the legal numbering system. For example, if a task has an outline number of 2, the subtasks that are indented under it would be 2.1, 2.2, and so on. The outline number serves to identify the group containing the task in the overall structure of the project.

Understanding Summary Tasks and Subtasks

Like WBS, outlining organizes tasks into functional groups. Outlining is usually thought of in terms of its visual effect: You indent detail topics under major topics, creating subtasks. Figure 5.23 shows an expanded task list. The major topics, called summary tasks, control and summarize the subordinate detail tasks, called subtasks. In project scheduling, indenting a task is called demoting the task, and the task you demote becomes a subtask. The task under which the task is indented automatically becomes a summary task that both controls and summarizes the subtasks.


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