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Praveen Malik

About: Praveen Malik

Praveen Malik, PMP, has two-plus decades of experience as a project management instructor and consultant. He regularly conducts project management workshops in India and abroad and shares his project management thinking in his blog, PM by PM.

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All Articles and Webinars by Praveen Malik

Effectively Using Excel for Analyzing MS Project Data

Written on June 2, 2020, by

MS Project (MSP) is an excellent tool for preparing and tracking project schedules. Excel is also a great tool for analyzing any type of data. So, which one should you use for schedule analysis? You probably know that MSP has a whole host of features for analyzing project schedules like Task Filters, Sorting, and Reports….

Six Data Points Needed to Create a Great Project Communication Plan

Written on May 18, 2020, by

Even before children learn to walk, they start to communicate. Human beings have the inherent gift of communication. It is the most basic part of our daily lives. But, what is there to plan in communication? Well, day to day mundane communication does not need any planning, but project communication requires serious planning. Try to…

Importing Data from Excel to MS Project

Written on May 5, 2020, by

MS Excel is a generic tool that can be used in many situations. In terms of project management, it is an average tool for preparing project schedules, at best. It is generally believed that MS Project is a much better solution than Excel could ever be for project scheduling. This is because Excel has some…

Top Five MS Project Scheduling Mistakes

Written on April 7, 2020, by

I’ve been covering a variety of MS Project (MSP) tips and guidelines in my last few articles. This time, I thought I’d write about the most common errors found in MSP schedules. When I started using MSP in 1997, I had to learn it on my own without much guidance. During those early days, I…

A Beginners Guide to Baselining a Project

Written on March 24, 2020, by

Throughout my career as a project manager, I have been through many project audits, but the first one is etched in my memory. During that first audit as a PM, I was asked to show the Microsoft Project schedule of my project. When I showed the schedule, the auditor asked me to then show the…

The Best Ten Microsoft Project Tips for Beginners

Written on March 10, 2020, by

There is an old adage which says, “Well begun is half done.” It means that once you start something well, the rest will become easier, and it’s especially true when learning Microsoft Project (MSP). I started using MSP in the year 1997. I was a greenhorn at that time and did not have much experience,…

How to Correctly Setup Actual Dates in MS Project

Written on February 10, 2020, by

How do you expect MS Project (MSP) to behave when you enter an Actual Start date for a task? You would likely expect it to store the date in the ‘Actual Start’ field and stop there, but MSP does something more than that. MSP also changes the ‘Start’ date field if the Actual Start is…

Milestone Reporting Using Gantt Charts in MS Project

Written on January 21, 2020, by

Gantt charts are very popular with project managers and senior managers. They are primarily used to create and communicate project schedules but they can also be used for preparing status reports and giving presentations. They can be combined with project milestones to create richer status reports and presentations. Gantt charts can be easily prepared in…

Four Ways to Customize the Gantt Chart in MS Project

Written on January 6, 2020, by

Gantt chart is the default view in MS Project. Since the inception of MS Project (MSP), Microsoft engineers have used Gantt chart as the default, although I have often wondered why they didn’t choose some other view. I think Network diagram may have been a better choice, as it is a much better tool for…

PMO Best Practices: 7 Steps for Better Schedule Management

Written on December 3, 2019, by

A few years ago, I was hired as a Project Management Office (PMO) consultant for a software products company. My assignment was to setup their PMO, implement best practices, and oversee projects for twelve months before handing over the setup to the client. My assignment ended up lasting thirteen months. Some would say it’s an…

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