April 15, 2019
Performance management software that's easy for novices, with a simple interface and solid feature-set.
When you first look at Smartsheet, the similarities with Microsoft Project become apparent. By default, they both use a spreadsheet-like interface next to a Gantt chart. You can also create sub-tasks through indentation, attach files, and assign task dependencies via the Predecessors column in the spreadsheet view. There is also a calendar view and Kanban boards, but it doesn't have a built-in timeline view – instead, it opts for integration with the third-party service Office Timeline.
Smartsheet is built for the web, offering easy integration with third-party tools and the ability to share specific parts of a project with select people. Like many other web-based tools, the comments support “@mentions” to make sure specific people see the information they need, and there's a highlight feature to see the most recent changes to a project.
Similar spreadsheet-like approach as Microsoft Project
Workspaces allow for sharing select project sheets and reports
Supports automated actions and conditional formatting
What is Smartsheet?
Starting life in 2005 and debuting to the public in 2006, Smartsheet is essentially an easier version of Microsoft Project. It has that familiar spreadsheet-like interface, but lacks the depth and complexity that keeps some users away from Microsoft's desktop app.
It's also web-based, which is pretty much the standard for modern project management software, with very few desktop-first products available outside of Microsoft Project. Smartsheet offers subscription plans that are suitable for companies of all sizes, from individual freelancers to medium-sized businesses and enterprises.
In This Guide:
Smartsheet Video Overview: Project Management in Action
This video from Smartsheet provides a basic overview of the software, and how to use key features such as conditional formatting, editing rows and columns, and switching views.
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