Skill Level Intermediate
- [Instructor] Hi, I'm Bonnie Beafort. In this project tip, you'll see how to make key project tasks stand out with a custom bar style and custom text formatting. The marked field is the most useful field to use for this sort of thing. That's because you can define formatting for bar styles and table text in the Gant chart and other views. So I'm gonna use the Gant chart view. The first thing I wanna do is insert the marked field into the table so that I can change values for tasks.
I'm gonna add it in between task name and duration. So I'm gonna right click the duration heading. And on the shortcut menu choose insert column. I'll start typing the name of the field. When I see it in the dropdown list, I can click it to select it. Now before I go any further, I also wanna mention that you can use project's custom flag fields as well. For example, if I go to the project tab and click custom fields, in the custom fields dialog box in the type dropdown list, I can choose flag.
And there are 20 custom flag fields. If you wanna format several different values you can use multiple flag fields. Like flag one, two, and three. The only limitation is this will only work in the Gant chart view. Because of that, I'm gonna click cancel. And we're gonna stick with the marked field. You can see from the values that marked is a yes, no field. All the values are set to no initially.
We're gonna go ahead and mark three of the tasks in this small project to yes. The first one I'm gonna do is install siding. Which is task 19. I click the marked cell in that row. And I can click the down arrow and then click yes in the dropdown list. The next one I wanna change is task 30, install drywall. I can click the cell in that row. And the other way to change the value is to type the letter y on the keyboard.
And that will change the value to yes. Finally I'll click the cell for task 37, complete HVAC. And I'll type y again to change it to yes. To save this value I can press enter or just click another cell. Now that I have my three marked tasks, let's go ahead and define a bar style for all of the marked tasks. To do that we're gonna head over to the format tab on the ribbon.
In the bar styles section, click the format button. And then choose bar styles on the dropdown menu. That opens up the bar styles dialog box. Scroll down to the bottom of the list so you can see the first blank row. I'm gonna click the name cell. And I'm gonna name this key tasks. The next thing I have to do is specify what the bar should look like. I'm gonna click the appearance cell in this row.
Down in the bottom half of the dialog box the bars tab is displayed and that's what I want. I'm gonna start by changing the color for the bar itself. In the middle color box click the down arrow. And I'll choose this gold color. Then in the pattern dropdown list, again still in the middle, I'm gonna choose this entry that looks like a solid color. You can see what it looks like here in the color box and you can also see it in the appearance cell.
Let's go ahead and add some marks to the start and end of the bar. In the start shape box I'm gonna click the down arrow. And I'm gonna use this vertical rectangle. Then in the color box for the start, I'll click the down arrow and choose kind of a brick red. Let's do the same thing for the end of the bar. I'm gonna click the down arrow in the shape box and choose that vertical bar.
Then in the color box I'm gonna choose that same brick red. Now the bar is defined. The next thing we're gonna do is go to the show for task cell. When I click that cell, I can see the down arrow. So go ahead and click that. And a few entries down choose marked. So that means that this bar style will appear for any task that has the value marked equal to yes.
Now the great thing about the key tasks bar style being at the end of the list means that project draws the bar styles in order so you'll always see this bar style for any task where marked is equal to yes. Let's go ahead and click okay. Sure enough over on the right side you can see that the three bars are gold with the brick red at the beginning and the end. Well now that we have the bar styles and the time scale formatted, let's say that you wanna be able to see the tasks over in the table as well.
You can do that with text styles. On the format tab go to the very left end of the ribbon and click the button text styles. That opens up the text styles dialog box. The first thing we're gonna do is in the item to change box click the down arrow and choose marked tasks. Now I can change what the text is going to look like for all of my marked tasks.
In the font style section, I'm gonna click bold. In the size section I'll click 12. And let's change the color to a brick red. So in the color box I click the down arrow. And choose the same color that I have on the ends of the bar styles. When you click okay, now you can see the text style applied to the three tasks where marked is equal to yes. That's how you highlight important tasks using bar and text styles and the marked field.