Article: Setting Baselines and using "Planned" columns.
A "Baseline" is essentially a snapshot of the details of a project plan and serves as a means of auditing your original project plan and the actual details as the project progresses.
Once your project has been established:
- Right-click on the column header and add any of the columns beginning with "Planned" (e.g. "Planned Start").*
- Click on the "Advanced" menu.
- Click on the "Set Baseline" option.
You will notice the start date in the "Planned Start" and "Start" columns match. If you adjust the start date of any task, the "Start" column is updated, but the "Planned Start" is not.
Use this feature at the beginning of your project. As your project progresses, and after it has been completed, a comparison of the "Planned" and actual columns will help you determine where adjustments were made.
Warning: If you set your baselines and then add new tasks to your project, the content of the "Planned" columns for those tasks added after the baseline was set will be blank. If you choose to click on the "Baselines" icon again, this will reset the baselines for the entire project.
Our Professional and Enterprise Edition users also have access to our Variance columns, which call out the difference between your planned v. actual dates.
In addition, Professional and Enterprise users can see a graphical representation of planned v. actual on the Summary tab inside each project. This graph will be blank until you set a baseline on the project.