What is a Gantt Chart OR Bar Chart – Project Management Tool

Gantt Chart (Bar Chart) is a useful and essential tool for planning and scheduling construction projects. This is a common technique used by project managers or quantity surveyor for scheduling construction activities.

Gantt Chart is a type of bar chart used to illustrate a project schedule, including start and finish dates of activities and a summary of activities of a project. Bar chart represents how a contractor can plan construction activities including ordering supplies, scheduling subcontractors, and completing job-related administrative tasks.

Using Gantt chart helps to ensure that the project schedule is maintained at a reasonable pace. The individual tasks that make up the work breakdown schedule logically progress in a manner that moves the project closer to completion.

What is the Gantt Chart Advantages? Using a Gantt chart offers the following advantages:

  • Bar charts can be used to represent phases and activities of a project so they can be understood by a general audience.
  • It can be useful to indicate the critical points on the chart with bold or coloured outlines of the bars.
  • An updated Gantt chart helps manage the project and head off schedule problems.
  • Computer software can simplify constructing and updating a Gantt chart.
  • You don’t really need specialised software to build a Gantt chart as it can be easily prepared using Excel or similar software.

A bar chart can be used for just about any type of project, from laying out a marketing strategy or planning a building project.

How to prepare a Gantt Chart for Construction Project

The Gantt chart lists the construction activities or tasks which need to performed down a single column. A second column is indicating the length of time to complete each activity is often add. At the top of the chart, dates for the construction projects notes in the horizontal row. To the right of each activity, a line, or bar is draw from starting date to the completion date for the activity.

All activities in the first column are made in this manner across the rows of the chart, with the bar for each activity beginning at the earliest possible starting date. Many activities must be completed in sequence, requiring the completion of one activity before the next can be started. Some tasks are completed independently.

The chart is used to establish a precedence network that determines the priority level of each task associated with the project. At the same time, the chart also evaluates the dependency relationships of each of the tasks. Together, these two aspects of the Gantt chart make it possible arrange and project the completion time of various tasks in a manner. It shows a logical progression toward the successful completion of the project.

Example of a Gantt Chart for a Residential Construction Work


In most cases, the Gantt chart appears as a horizontal bar chart. Each task associated with the project is accounted for on the body of the chart. Because the Gantt chart is concerned with executing the project in the most efficient manner. This also helps to define the amount of time required to complete each individual task. The chart also helps to define tasks that can complete concurrently and which tasks cannot address until other tasks are fully complete. This function helps to project both the sequence and the duration of each task involved in the project.

When to Use Gantt Charts

Gantt charts have a variety of uses among construction professionals. The manager can use Gantt charts under the following circumstances.

  • To communicate plan or status of a construction project.
  • For monitoring tasks within a project.
  • When putting together a simple proposal for a small project.
  • To express the sequence and duration of specific tasks or process from a construction project,
  • To demonstrate which tasks depend on completion of previous tasks.

A contractor can draw a simple Gantt chart by using a pencil and a sheet of graphing paper. Or can develop more complex charts by using the Excel templates and computer scheduling programs available. Advanced scheduling software can generate an entire chart that helps contractor provides information about the sequence of the activities.