[Status: Investigating ๐Ÿ•ต๏ธโ€โ™€๏ธ] Allow Subtasks to Update Start and End Dates of Parent Tasks

I think this is somewhere else in the community, but when I posted something else as a suggestion in the regular community area, I was asked to place my suggestion (Dependencies in the Table View) here in the Product Feedback section.

 

It would be helpful to have a setting to allow subtasks to drive the dates for the parent tasks.  Right now it's manual.  There are some who prefer it that way, and some who do not, so it would be nice to be able to set that on a per-project basis.

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This would be great! I also posted a similar request, and was asked to add my comments to this post. Below is what I wrote:

-------

I view the Parent Task more as a "Summary" task, with the sub tasks making up the whole of the Parent Task. However the Parent task doesn't really auto sum all of the work in the sub tasks. In essence, the Parent Task is a mini project in the overarching project.

[Parent Task] Website Launch

[Sub] Wireframe meeting

[Sub] Write copy

[Sub] Design

[Sub] Develop

[Sub] Launch

So the Parent Task duration should be the sum duration of the sub tasks, and time allotted should be a sum of the hours allotted for the sub tasks.

In the Gantt Chart, this would be reflected as the Parent Task represented as a solid bar across the top of the chart for the total duration of the summed up sub tasks (below the bar representing the project as a whole). By clicking on the bar, all of the tasks on the gantt chart associated with the Parent task could be highlighted while the other tasks fade.

For example (also attached as a file, in case text alignment is lost):

|------------------------------------------------Creative Project------------------------------------------------|

   [--------------------Photography------------------------]

                      [--------------------Logo Creation-------------------]

                                                                            [----------------Videography---------------]

                                                             [-----------------------------Website--------------------------]

This approach to Parent Tasks would also make it easier to keep track of actual time spent, and actual budget spent for the mini projects that make up the larger project. For example, "The logo creation budget is going over, so we're going to have to revise the scope for the videography tasks in to keep the project as a whole within budget."

One might say that each of the above mentioned Parent Tasks should their own project, but this won't work for us. Sub tasks within different parent tasks have dependencies on one another (ie. the videography "planning" tasks can start before the logo is completed, but the video graphics can't be designed until the logo is finalized.)

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I also very much need this option and while I do like the other functionalities in Wrike, this inability to satisfy a pretty basic Gantt function may be a deal breaker for me to switch to Smartsheets.

I need to pull the trigger on one of these software platforms soon. Is this something that will actually be implemented in the foreseeable future? From my understanding this has been a topic since fall of 2016 from another post. 

I understand roll-out ETA dates are not possible, but it helps to know at least what quarter you guys are targeting to release this feature. 

Thanks.

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@Marc sounds good, we'll make sure to update this thread as new functionality related to tasks/subtasks is released. 

@Keeley thanks for the post, the visual was very helpful. I hadn't thought about how the subtask/parent task relationship could work from a budgeting/duration perspective, that's an interesting use case. There are some cases where there is work associated directly with the parent task (separate from subtasks) but I understand how what you're saying would work for you. You mention having your parent tasks as projects but that that wouldn't work because you need to create dependencies between subtasks. Just wondering why dependencies between tasks wouldn't work?

@Adrian You're right I can't share an exact date, but our developers are actively working on improving the relationship between subtasks and parent tasks and a change is on the short-term roadmap. 

Stephanie Westbrook Community Team at Wrike Become a Wrike expert with Wrike Discover

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Have just switched to using Wrike and very disappointed because this feature is not available.

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@stephanie I was not saying dependencies between separate tasks in the same project wouldn't work (obviously that's how dependancies are set up in the first place). I was saying that it didn't make sense to have dependencies between tasks in different projects. Even if Wrike does allow for that, it doesn't provide the "at a glance" functionality of seeing dependencies between tasks (or sub tasks) in the same project on the project gantt chart. This is where treating parent tasks as mini projects helps to create that at a glance understanding of the entire project network. 

Does that make sense?

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@Keeley, yes I completely understand now. Essentially, if you did use the Project/Task system, you would also need to be able to create dependencies between Projects. Thank you for explaining :)

@Le Welcome to Wrike! We're working on the functionality, we'll make sure to update this thread as soon as we have more news.

Stephanie Westbrook Community Team at Wrike Become a Wrike expert with Wrike Discover

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Rolling out training to my team... The way that we're approaching parent/child task duration is to have the parent dependent upon the children. If the parent task is Step 4 and the child tasks are Step 4a and Step 4b, we're putting the durations on Step 4a and Step 4b and setting Step 4 to have dependencies of starting when Step 4a starts and ending when Step 4b ends. This is a clunky pain point, but the only way I currently see to work around. The hardest part is trying to explain to my team why this amazing software that can do so many wonderful things doesn't already have this extremely basic point covered.

 

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+1

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As a follow up to Emily's post, we use the Parent Task as a home base, backlogged with no duration, no allocated hours, and no budget. It just houses all of the subtasks, and has a description explaining the "mini project" as a whole. It's also a place where resources can be stored for the team to reference easily from their subtasks (like files, links, comments, contact info, etc) so that they don't have to recall "completed" subtasks or have the same information in multiple subtasks. Ideally, down the road, all the information (timeline, allocated hours, time spent, and budget) will roll up from the subtasks to the Parent Task, so as the home base it will also be an at-a-glance overview of the "mini project" time/budget progress.

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Anastasia

Thank you for the additional information, everyone! This is helpful as we're currently actively working on enhancements to this feature. ;)

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Another vote for this feature. 

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Please prioritize this feature. It's a surprise this still isn't available.

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Guys, this feature is critical, in my opinion - I am very close to stop using wrike because this is missing!

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Hi,

I thought I would throw in our needs:

We are going to start using this for Agile Project Management of Software development.  Therefore what we would like is:

1. have each team members put the the time it will take them to complete the each sub task in hours and minutes

2. ability to determine if a sub task is dependent on another sub task so that if:

 - Yes: then the system would add up these times (sequential sub task)

 - No: then the system would use the longest time (concurrent sub task)

3. Have the system automatically total the hours and minutes to complete the "task"

4. based on today's date, hours to complete, hours in a work week (or hours in a work week by assigned user as we have some part time team members), and the order/priority of the task, automatically enter the start and end dates of each "tasks"

5. Update the timeline with the above information

 

With this I could set up all the iterations/sprints/min goals

 

Hope you can do this soon as we are going to try this out for a few month to see if it can work for us. 

 

Best wishes,

Sonia

 

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Could we get an update on this thread from Wrike? Reading all the posts, Wrike has been working on this since February 2017.

This is a critical component to project management that is missing. Could we get an honest time estimate on this? Are we talking a couple weeks, months or you can't do it because someone has patented that feature??? A detailed answer would be most appreciated.

Thank you,

Amanda

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@Anna, @Anastasia, @Stephanie,

Can we please get a status update on this basic feature that every software I have every looked into for project management actually has?

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@Ryan_Bowie

 

Does Asana have this feature?

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@Ryan That's pretty cold to promote Wrike competitors in a thread about product improvements to the system, especially when Wrike has already said this feedback is a top priority for them. Keep in mind that Wrike started as a Task Management software, with a focus on teammate collaboration. I have worked with other software companies and none of them are as responsive and open to customer feedback as Wrike, and the collaboration within those systems do not exist without a third party tool like Slack. 

The improvements this software has made in just the last 12 months is outstanding. 

In other words, your comment is "out of scope" and in no way contributes to the improvement of the software. It would be well within Wrike's authority to remove your comment.

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Agreed, Keeley re: Ryan's comment.  Let's be adults here.  Ryan, I get you are frustrated by this missing feature, so are the rest of us, but it's definitely going to be worth the wait once it's integrated into the tool.

Anyway, I had the privilege of speaking with a Wrike Product Manager on this item a few months ago.  A few days ago I was given updates on this from some of the product team via my account manager.  

While I will not share any dates/projections for availability that I was given, I will say that they are actively working on it.

Maybe one of the mods can consider sharing some of the more detailed updates on timing, etc.? 

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@Megan & @Keeley,

To clarify; I'm simply frustrated that the only thing we're being told is 'its under development'. I was using Wrike about 12 months ago and stopped using it because several features were missing that were quite important to my team.

In the last month we have returned to Wrike because of its great UI, and some of the collaboration and coordination functionality that is integral to Wrike's software.

I am very surprised that something so basic and yet so game changing is missing from such a refined software (it's kinda like not having a bullet point functionality in MS Word). It doesn't break the usability, it simply means most PM teams will need to tweak their processes to work with Wrike's system. 

I believe that most people would agree that the Pro's of Wrike outweigh the Cons, and the Dev team is very responsive relative to most PM software teams.

If I could ask for one thing from Wrike's team, it would be to please provide more information regarding the development of this feature and when we can expect to see some improvements in dependent durations.

Either way, I will be reaching out to our Account Manager for more details for our team, and encourage everyone on this thread to do the same.

 

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@Ryan_Bowie , Thank you for the comment. It would be most appreciated if you could share that estimate date. I think we all deserve to know.

To Wrike team:

I am just asking for an estimate on when this may happen. The "we are working on it" seems to have been going on for a while. It's one of those putting you off answers. Can we get a straight answer on when this may roll out? Assuming you are using the Wrike software, you've got to have an estimate on the completion date. I need to know so I can plan time management for me and our team. It is seriously taking a lot of my time to update the roll ups, which my staff needs. Our projects are quite detailed, which Wrike is superb for, but my team really relies on that roll up data.

I assume from the previous posts, this needs to be copied to: @Anna @Anastasia @Stephanie

Thank you

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Hi everyone, I know there are frustrations around us saying we are working on the feature without sharing a date and I completely understand how that's frustrating. From our side though, I want you to know that we don't just say that to appease people. We use the forums as our main source for collecting product feedback and we want to have an honest back and forth relationship with everyone. Happily, that means that if we say we're "actively working on something" our internal development and Product Team actually are working on the functionality. We don't get to say that on all threads and I'm so happy that we can say it here. 

I still can't share exact dates (Wrike is an agile company and things can sometimes change or there could be unexpected delays), but we did go to the Product team this morning (showed them this thread) and it's definitely on the team's short-term roadmap. I just can't narrow down dates for you any more than Q4. You will of course be the first to know if/when we can give you more information. 

 

Stephanie Westbrook Community Team at Wrike Become a Wrike expert with Wrike Discover

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@ Stephanie

Thank you! Just getting an estimate that it will be Q4 is good for me. I just need to be able to manage my time on this end. Best of luck to the development team!

Amanda

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Wrike, this should be fixed ASAP. No one has addressed the real issue behing this, which is that you cannot really MEASURE/MANAGE a project properly to avoid cost overruns or delays without this. I get it that we all trust in the people working at their max, but the whole purpose of Wrike is to measure to manage and now it cannot be done.

To aid in the discussion and in the solution, see the article here (https://www.planacademy.com/measuring-project-progress-methods/) describing the different ways of measuring a project progress. Wrike should have all of them if it aims to be top notch. Having only one, is not useful.

Stephanie, I would appreciate an update on the dates please. Is it still Q4 2017? early Q4 or late Q4?

Thank you!

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@Hans Hi! We can't say anything more specific than Q4 just in case the release date needs to change for some reason (we don't want to disappoint you guys after sharing a release timeline). The team is working on this now though and you will have the improved functionality as soon it's developed and bug free. 

Stephanie Westbrook Community Team at Wrike Become a Wrike expert with Wrike Discover

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In projects with 100s of tasks it would save a lot of time and prevent inconsistencies if parent tasks updated automatically when sub-tasks are updated.

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I think it should be normal parent task ajust automatically its duration and dates in relation ot its subtasks. This is absolutely normal in project management. As you correctly write in your help section subtasks help you divide your tasks into smaller action items. So if the action A is divided into actions AA AB and AC it would be normal the start date of A should be the earlier of the three and the duration the sum. I'm trying Wrike in these days and I think is a great tool but this is a really great flaw. The greatness of Wrike is to combine task management, GTD and project management but not if one of the most important and useful features of project management is absent. I don't subscribe until this feature is not implemented.

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I'm in the process of evaluating Wrike and without this feature I don't see how we can select Write as our project management solution. Too bad, much of the other functionality is there (albiet a bit clunky, need more keyboard shortcuts or allow users to create their own shortcuts).

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We have a small group of people in our company using Wrike, and this feature is one of the main reasons the rest of the company is refusing to adopt Wrike for PM needs. I don't see how such a critical feature of task management was not there from the very beginning, and also why is it taking so many months to implement - it seems like it should be a pretty straight-forward fix.

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Hi there!!  Q4 is right around the corner.  Checking in to see how this new feature is coming along, and when it may be available to us?  Right now my team and I have abandoned Wrike (we are still paying for it, mind you) because this feature not being present is not making the system work the way we need it to.

Any other updates on additional features that have been proposed?  Leads and Lags?? HUGE piece of project planning, especially when you need to work leads and lags into equipment ordering.

Is there any type of user group/conference (even online) that's been considered to have round tables/workshops with the Wrike product team to have interactive conversations with the users?

Patiently (with thinning patience) waiting,

Megan

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