OpenOffice is a free, fully featured, office software program with a spreadsheet (OpenOffice Calc) that rivals Excel. It can be downloaded from OpenOffice for free. The OpenOffice Spreadsheet can be used to create a basic Gantt Chart suitable for small projects.

The basis for the Gantt Chart in OpenOffice is the stacked bar chart with two data sets, the days from the start of the project to the start of the task, and the days required for the task. By changing the colour of the first part of the stacked bars then the result looks like the usual task bar in a Gantt Chart. Nice trick!

Step 1 - Start the table

With a blank sheet open, create the initial table by adding column headers for Tasks, Days to Start & Duration. Format the headers as required.

Step 1 - Start the table

Step 2 - Add tasks to the table

Add the task details, when they are planned to start in days from the beginning of the project, and the expected duration in days. These values can be adjusted later as needed, and even values (tasks) inserted between others or added on.

Step 2 - Add tasks to the table

Step 3 - Select all of the table cells

Drag over the table cells to highlight everything from the headers, starting in the top left, to the end of the data at the bottom right.

Step 3 - Select all of the table cells

Step 4 - Insert a Stacked Bar Chart

Now that the table of tasks and timings is ready and selected then the initial chart can be added. Go to the Insert menu item on the top bar to open the drop down, and select Chart... The new chart will initially be a standard bar chart, with the Chart Wizard open below it. Use the Choose a chart type option to select Bar and then Stacked, then select Finish.

Step 4 - Insert a Stacked Bar Chart 

Chart wizard select stacked chart

Step 5 - Format the bars to Gantt style

Select the first data series on the chart (the Days to Start part) which are blue in the example. Then select Format at the top to open the drop down menu and select Format Selection..., or use the Format Selection button that should appear in the top  menu bar. This will open the Data Series dialogue box where Area and Fill can be set to None. This will make the blue colour disappear leaving just to Duration element of the bar as in a Gantt Chart.

Select bars

Format Selection

Select fill color none

Gantt formatted chart

Step 6 - Set Tasks to the correct order

By default the chart will have the Tasks in the wrong order, starting with last at the top.Double click the chart to open it and right click on the Tasks to open the menu, then select Format Axis. Or select the X Axis in the drop down selection in the menu bar above and select Format Selection next to it to open the X Axis formatting dialogue box. Under the Scale option choose Reverse direction and click Ok.

Format axis

Format Axis Reverse direction

Reverse direction X Axis complete

The Gantt Chart can be further customised as needed by removing or changing the titles, or adjusting the colours etc.

Download the example Simple Gantt Chart for OpenOffice.

Download the example Simple Gantt Chart for OpenOffice.

More Gantt Chart Articles

Gantt Chart Layout
The Gantt Chart shows project tasks related to time. The Gantt Chart could include: Project tasks in the order they will be started Start date - p...
Gantt Chart Components
Managing the tasks associated with a project is made much easier using a Gantt Chart. The Gantt Chart will bring together all the required tasks for c...
Gantt Chart Speadsheet
There is dedicated software available to create and edit Gantt Charts with a range of features useful when the chart required is for a complex project...
Gantt Chart in Excel
Expensive, dedicated software isn't required to produce a simple, and useful, Gantt Chart, for many small projects. Widely available spreadsheet softw...
Gantt Chart in Sheets
Google Sheets is a free, online based spreadsheet with all the features required to create a simple Gantt Chart for small projects, avoiding the use o...
Gantt Chart in OneDrive
Microsoft's OneDrive has a free, online version of Excel available that can be used to create a Gantt chart in a similar way to the desktop software. ...
Gantt Chart in Numbers
Numbers is Apple's version of Spreadsheet software available on the Mac which can be used to create a Gantt chart in a similar way to other online and...
Example Gantt Charts
The example spreadsheets with simple Gantt Charts are listed below. These are the finished Gantt Charts from the tutorials for creating the base chart...
Using a Gantt Chart for Project Management
Project management is the process of planning, monitoring, and controlling a project from start to finish. Different projects require different proces...
How to Create a Gantt Chart in 8 Simple Steps
Creating a Gantt chart is an excellent way to visualize the progress of a project over time. With a Gantt chart, you can see which tasks are taking up...
Unlocking Project Success: The Power of Gantt Charts
From simple home improvement projects to complex organizational initiatives, effective planning and execution are essential for achieving success. One...
Gantt Charts: Enhancing Project Management Methodologies
Project management methodologies are essential for ensuring the smooth and successful execution of a project. Among the numerous tools and techniques ...

Text and images Copyright © Gantt Chart

Use of this website is under the conditions of our Terms of Service.

Contact Us:


Privacy is important and our policy is detailed in our Privacy Policy.

See the Gantt Chart Cookie Policy for our use of cookies and the user options available.