Microsoft Planner (Planner) is a task management tool that small teams of individuals can use to manage their work and associated tasks visually and openly with the rest of the team. In this blog, I will discuss using Planner within Microsoft Teams (Teams) to enable an IT project team at a small fictitious company Contoso, to plan their deployment of Office 365 (example scenario).
When I think about the management tools I should use for my project, I need to consider using either Planner or Microsoft Project for my specific scenario to manage the team, tasks and output, and I ask myself these questions to assist with that decision:
- Is my project complex?
- Does it require a full-time project manager to govern the team?
- Does my project have dependencies and child projects?
- Do I need to track resources, and their costs?
- Do I have multiple time-lines with milestones?
- Does the team need visibility to who’s working on what?
- What are the status reporting requirements?
- Are we using Microsoft Teams already for the project team to collaborate?
- Is this a formal project, or is it a workflow?
- How big is my project team?
Depending upon how these questions are answered, either Microsoft Project or Planner will need to be used to manage the project. To help me decide which tool to use, I think about the level of complexity of my specific project and what all is involved. I find Microsoft Project valuable when there’s a large project team that has complexity (i.e. dependencies, complex reporting, integration with other tools, etc) and when a dedicated Project Manager is managing the project. Whereas Planner is valuable if the project team is small and is mostly task based work that doesn’t have a lot of complexity involved (i.e. event planning, budget planning, etc)