Creating templates from projects and maintaining the timeframes

I have just been working on creating templates for large events that we hold every year, I have used existing projects and created templates. The issue I am having is that we set all dates in templates as “Days before the start date” with the start of the event as the start date. When I create the template and change the setting it throws all the timeframes out by a significant amount. Would this happen if we could change our default setting in templates to "Days before the start date’, at the moment it creates a significant amount of work to correct this.

Hi @Project_Manager14 , welcome to the forum :wave:

In your project template, you can set all dates to be relative to the reference date, and inverse this by having all dates lead up to the last task which has a due date.

Have a look at this helpful article and let me know if you have any difficulties setting this up.

Thanks Richard, the issue is when you have created the template from a project it is automatically defaulted to from project start date, which is populated by the dates that were in the project, however when we change to “project due date” which is how we work, the date become significantly inaccurate, they do not adjust proportionally. This is a major issue for us, we should be able to change the setting before the template is created.

@Project_Manager14 , could you elaborate on this a bit?

As you know, there are no ‘real’ dates in a Project template. All dates should be relative to the project start date or end date which is either the first or the last task in your template that has a relative due date, i.e. the ‘reference date’. In your case, that would be the actual day of the event, right?

When you create a project from a template, it will ask you for the project start date or end date, depending on what you have set, as per the below screenshot from the article I sent you. If you set it to the latter, then when you create projects from your template, the end date you will choose will be the event day- then, upon creation, all tasks will be scheduled backwards, from that end date.

Unfortunately, you cannot set the ‘reference date’ to any task within your project - it has to be the first or last task that has a relative due date. Therefore, what I suggest to my clients is to set relative dates to the majority of your tasks which happen before the reference day (your event day). If you have tasks after the event day, then DO NOT set relevant dates on these. Leave them with a blank due date and perhaps add a task with instructions on how to fill out those dates manually once the project is created from the task.

To fix your problem, clear the relative day fields for all tasks after your event. Then select the event day, click on due date field, then the ‘Due date rule’, select set to start, click update. Then again, select set to end date and click update again to reset all relative days. Also make sure to enable skip weekends if you initially planned your original project around them.

Hi Richard, thank you once again for your response, the issue is the default “Set schedule type” is the From the project start date. When I change this to the From project due date the relative days before do not update proportionally therefore the entire projects relative dates need to manually adjusted, which defeats the purpose of creating the template from the existing project.

For example, I have created a template from a project where the due date is 1 week from the due date, except when it is created it is now after the start date, as this is the default setting. I change the Set schedule type to From project due date and it is supposed to update all dates. This same task is now 365 days or similar from the project due date. The system is not updating proportionally, you should be able to set the Set schedule type before the template is created this may avoid this issue.

1 Like

Hi @Project_Manager14 , I believe there is something else at play here.

I have personally just tested all steps and cannot recreate your issue, at least as I understand it. I’m not sure we will be able to solve this with further exchange of messages in the forum but I’ll be happy to have a quick complimentary call with you to help. If you are interested, feel free to DM me by clicking on my profile photo.

Note, I do not work for Asana, I am an independent Solutions Partner as well as a volunteer Forum Leader.

Hi Richard,

Thank you for all your efforts, this is occurring when you create a template from a project, which we have to do for various reasons. Asana have just reached out to me so if I have no resolution with them I will take you up on your offer of a call. If they find a resolution I will let you know.

Thanks again.




1 Like