Microsoft Excel or Microsoft Project?
Why Microsoft Office Project 2007 is Easier and
More Effective for Managing Projects
Using the right tool gives project managers a distinct advantage when developing plans,
schedules and communicating project status. This whitepaper outlines the advantages of
using Microsoft Project 20007 instead of Microsoft Excel in project planning, scheduling and
management. Microsoft Office Project 2007 is designed to help manage key project
components using integrated planning, tracking, analyzing, and communicating tools.
Microsoft Project 2007 is an enabling tool for project managers designed specifically to
increase effectiveness and productivity around managing project type activities. While
Microsoft Office Excel is an exceptionally powerful tool, it is designed more to support the
creation, formatting and communication of spreadsheet type information.
An important first-step in managing a project
and ensuring its success is to understand every
project‟s Triple Constraint (Scope, Cost, and
Time). Managing these constraints can mean the
difference between success and failure. In fact
the 2004 Standish Groups “Chaos Report” found
that 53% (of Projects) are challenged (late, over
budget and/or with less than the required
features and functions).
Monitoring the triple constraint is straight-
forward using Microsoft Project 2007. The
program is designed to automatically calculate
and then recalculate the project plan based on
new or revised information about scope, time,
and resources. Making those forecasts clear to
stakeholders is key. With Project 2007, it is easy
to graphically represent current plans and any
changes so that managers and team members can effectively take appropriate action.
Many managers use Microsoft Excel to manage project information such as
scheduling project dates or recording task assignments and not knowing when to
shift to using Microsoft Project 2007. A big reason for this is one