When to use which tool: Microsoft List, Plan, Teamwork or Execute? (2023)

Get first-hand tips and tricks on using the latest applications from Microsoft and AvePoint in our upcoming webinars.Load up Microsoft Teams with the latest app: tasks and lists!

This post is the fourth in Matt's Which Tool When series. You can check previous entries below!

  • #MicrosoftProject i #MicrosoftPlanner;
  • #SharePoint i #OneDrive;
  • #MicrosoftTeams w Yammerze;
  • Outlook w #MicrosoftTeams;

2020 turned out to be a big year for Microsoft 365 with new tools and features including the introduction of Microsoft Lists (essentially a major update to the SharePoint lists experience) in a standalone app, a new Tasks app programMicrosoft teamPlus various updates to the two major task apps, Microsoft Planner and Microsoft To Do.

This raises a lot of questions about when to use which tool, including the confusing overlap between these four apps. Proper task management throughout life is a nirvana that app developers around the world are trying to solve in the best possible way. It is not without reason that thousands of job search results appear in the Google Play and Apple application stores.

But where are the lists, schedules, to-dos, and group tasks? There is some overlap between these apps, and there are aspects that aren't really just about work. So let's take a deeper look.

Are you using the right Microsoft tool for this task?

Let's talk about what these tools are really for. That doesn't mean they can't do more than what I've described, they just don't necessarily mean:

  • Microsoft's planneris an easy-to-use project management tool based on team collaboration. It's built into Microsoft 365 Teams so every Outlook team, Teams group, and Yammer community can track their open tasks in a way that doesn't require a formal project manager. It uses Kanban boards to track jobs and provides rich information about each job. There is also a personal Planner view so everyone can see all the Planner tasks in groups and plans. Planner competes with tools like Trello, Wrike, and Asana.

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  • lista Microsoftuis a major feature and interface update to SharePoint Lists, separate from its own application. While lists are great for tracking tasks and managing projects, that's not their only advantage. With lists, you can create custom tables and columns that best suit your needs. Perhaps for tracking inventory, scheduling events, managing travel plans, and more.
    When to use which tool: Microsoft List, Plan, Teamwork or Execute? (1)
  • a Microsoft assignmentIt replaced Wunderlist (an application acquired by Microsoft) and succeeded in replacing the task part of Outlook, which is remarkable considering the "app" has been around for decades. To Do Tracks individual tasks in lists and groups that you (the user) manage. However, the best combination with other applications is that it displays Planner tasks in the application along with all flagged emails from Outlook. With the Power Automate connector, you can also add tasks from other apps, such as Microsoft OneNote. The To Do app connects your tasks to your Microsoft account.
    When to use which tool: Microsoft List, Plan, Teamwork or Execute? (2)
  • teamworkis the latest addition to Microsoft Teams, providing a central list of tasks in a team-friendly way. It is basically a combination of a group scheduling tool and a to-do list. It doesn't actually do anything. It simply centralizes your work in Teams, an app that Microsoft has prioritized in its vision of the modern workplace.

When to use which tool: Microsoft List, Plan, Teamwork or Execute? (3)

It basically depends on whether the applicationstorage and managementyour responsibilities orPresentYour tasks in one frame.

Planner and List are great for adding and managing team tasks and to-do lists. The To Do app is great for adding and managing personal tasks and to-do lists. Tasks in Teams is basically an overview window for all your planner and to-do tasks. There is currently no integration to view task lists and tasks in groups assigned to you via To Do. That said, lists can be easily added as tabs to any team using the connector, so you can easily access lists and other tasks through Teams.

Now that we've covered the separation between storing tasks and viewing them, the actual problem of "tasks in a plan, to-do, group, or list" breaks down into two problems:

  • Plan or checklist?
  • Efficiency or teamwork?

As with most technical solutions, the answer is:it depends.

When to use which tool: Microsoft List, Plan, Teamwork or Execute? (4)

Microsoft Lists vs. Microsoft Planner: What's the Difference?

While there seems to be a lot of overlap between scheduling and lists, it's not as much as you might think. Yes, you can basically replicate how Planner works with lists, but if you don't need customization, why would you?

use the planner:If you want fast, simple and understandable project management.it works. It provides a number of fields for your tasks, integrates with tasks and tasks in teams and is great for agile and waterfall project management, especially for small teams (i.e. not for enterprise portfolio management). You can view tasks in table or calendar view and it includes a nice dashboard overview. Planner is available as a web app, Teams tab, and mobile app.

use list:If you want a custom experience where you can control task fields, their options, layout, views, etc.If you want to manage things that aren't really tasks, you also need a list. This brings us to examples such as inventory tracking, asset management, event planning, and travel planning. You can view tasks (and other list items) in list or calendar view. Lists are available in the web app, the Groups tab, and the mobile app.

But remember if that's the casetrueGiven the integration of Tasks and Tasks in Teams, Planner should be used for team tasks.

Microsoft To-Do or tasks in Microsoft Teams?

Choosing between To Do and Tasks in Teams is a bit tricky. It's really a crisis of judgment. Tasks in Teams is just one way to view to-dos and existing tasks in Planner. This means that it actually only shows tasks that are backlog (since Planner tasks can be viewed in backlog). But the way you see them is different.

use to do: If you want to have your to-do list in one central place, especially with a great mobile app and easy to set due dates and reminders (these push notifications really help!). The To Do app is great for managing your daily tasks and creating your personal schedule.The task list makes it easy to manage tasks in detail.It is available as a web app, desktop app, and mobile app.

use teamwork: If you like to view your tasks in a broader form (for example, in the form of a column list), you may prefer Group Tasks. Tasks in Teams also separate tasks by project and team, meaning you can set up tasks by project and deliverable, not just an endless list of tasks assigned to youToday(Sometimes you just can't finish it, man?). Also, if you never leave Microsoft Teams and it's the center of your work, use Tasks in Teams.Tasks in Teams make it easy to manage tasks globally.It is available through the Teams web app, desktop app, and mobile app.

If you're looking for Gantt charts, look elsewhere

One thing you don't see in these tools is the Gantt chart feature. This is probably because Microsoft Project (Microsoft's advanced project management tool) promotes this feature as a core feature and doesn't want to cannibalize its own advanced apps.

Gantt chart functionality can be found in the "legacy" task list in SharePoint Online. They're not great, but they work. You can also synchronize project files with SharePoint task lists to save on licensing costs and secure various tasks.

The problem is, if you want one of these apps to fill that need, you'll have to start looking elsewhere, as it's unlikely Microsoft will offer a full-featured Gantt chart in Planner or Lists. This is a key feature that sets it apart from many competing list and task apps, notably Asana, Wrike, and monday.com, which offer Gantt chart views as part of their offerings (although, like Project, these apps come at an additional cost).

Find the right Microsoft apps for effective project management

You have many options. That's because it existsA lotExisting tools may provide some or all of these capabilities, all within these applications. Different apps in the Microsoft 365 ecosystem do thisSomefrom them. Microsoft is committed to providing similar capabilities so you can get the most out of them while protecting your work and lists with world-class data protection and security.

Also, many new apps have been developed by other apps and should please longtime users of those apps (Wunderlist, Outlook tasks, SharePoint lists). So when deciding what to use, consider the considerations above, and remember that if what you've chosen doesn't seem to be working, it's wise to sit down with your team and discuss whatI thinkCheck and try each app to see which one brings you closer to your goals.

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