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How to set a deadline in MS Project?

Before we explain how to set a deadline MS Project, let’s first define what a deadline exactly means. A deadline is a date by which a certain task/deliverable/milestone must be finished. For instance a need date or any other date you want to manage. Adding deadlines can give valuable scheduling information as it will calculate the days left to this date or signals when the item will be late.

There are two ways to set a deadline

Option 1

You can add a deadline by typing the date directly in the column ‘Deadline’*:

How to set a deadline in MS Project?1

Option 2

You can add a deadline by double clicking on a task, summary task or milestone > Advanced > Deadline > select a date:

How to set a deadline in MS Project?2

 

In the Gantt chart a deadline is displayed as a little green arrow. When you hover over the green arrow the deadline date is shown.

How to set a deadline in MS Project?3
If the deadline is not met, the red exclamation icon will be displayed in the Indicator column. See example below. Hovering over this icon in MS Project will give you information about the issue at hand.

*) To add a column: with your pointer go to the headers of the columns > right mouse click > Insert Column

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