Gantt Charts and Agile: charts, methodology and tools

2018-02-26 17:14:00

A Gantt chart is a schedule tool used in project management to show what has to be done and when. Since the first Gantt chart was created over a century ago, Gantt chart has been identified as "one of the most widely used management tools for project scheduling and control".1 If you want to learn more about Gantt charts and its importance, please refer to The Importance of Gantt Charts.

gantt chart schedule

A Simple Gantt chart

What is Gantt charts?

Gantt charts are named after Henry Gantt, an American engineer and project management consultant, who devised his own version of the chart based on Karol Adamiecki who created the very first Gantt chart.

Let's look at an example from Wikipedia and see how a Gantt chart converts data into a diagram.

"There are seven tasks, labeled a through g. Some tasks can be done concurrently (a and b) while others cannot be done until their predecessor task is complete (c and d cannot begin until a is complete). Additionally, each task has three-time estimates: the optimistic time estimate (O), the most likely or normal time estimate (M), and the pessimistic time estimate (P). The expected time (TE) is estimated using the beta probability distribution for the time estimates, using the formula (O + 4M + P) ÷ 6."

The diagram below is a Gantt chart with all information provided in the table above.

What is a Gantt chart in Agile?

In the context of Agile software development, a Gantt chart is used to illustrate releases or sprints.

The primary purpose of using Agile is to enable a faster reaction to requirement changes. As requirements change, the effort and time change, too. Therefore, in order to adequately adapt to changes and visualize the total amount of work left, Gantt charts would have to be updated almost all the time, which would be a burden on your development team. Fortunately, you can use an Agile tool to help you do it, rather than cross out everything on your chart and start it over.

ZenTao is an open source and Agile tool that supports Gantt chart. The main design philosophy of ZenTao is based on Scrum, an internationally popular Agile methodology. ZenTao is an All Lifecycle Management (ALM) and covers the entire lifecycle of software development. In ZenTao, the concepts of product, project, and test are clearly defined. Product team, development team and QA team coordinate and check with each other while they function differently. The three teams interact with each other through stories, tasks, and bugs, and eventually deliver the product with quality.

If you want to know more about this Scrum tool, you can visit us at or send me an email to


1. Klein, R. (1999). Scheduling of Resource-Constrained Projects. Operations Research/Computer Science Interfaces Series. Springer US. ISBN 978-0-7923-8637-7.



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