Create Actions

Your progress:

What will you learn in this lesson?

After completing this lesson, you’ll be able to:
  • Explain how to create actions.
Things you’ll need to know for this lesson:

Project – contains the summary information for the overall project.

Milestone – used to group a set of project actions and represent a phase of the project.

Action – contains the detail required for a specific project task.

Role – a person who can be assigned an Action or assigned as a Contributor to an Action.

Checklist – a list of to-do items to be completed while working on an Action.

Contributor – a Role in addition to the Action Owner that is assigned hours to spend working on an Action.

Let’s set the scene.

Layne is ready to plan the project and start assigning work to the team.

Quick review: what are Projects and Milestones?

A Project is made up of one or many Milestones. Milestones are made up of one or many Actions. The project in our example is a website build. The Milestones are the project phases: design, build and deliver. We created the Project and Milestones in the Create a Project lesson.

Got it, what are Actions?

Actions represent a work task that needs to be completed to progress a Project. An Action must be associated to a Milestone, which then rolls up to the Project. Each Action will have scheduled hours assigned. The scheduled hours can be billable or non billable, or any combination of billable and non billable. The Action is assigned to a role via the Action Owner field and has start and end dates.

In our example, Layne creates the Action “Create Website Wireframes” which she estimates will take 16 billable hours to complete and assigns the Action to Kelly. Layne also has the option to create a “to do” list, known as a Checklist in Mission Control, which represents all the items that Kelly needs to do to complete the Action.

Sounds great, tell me more about checklists…

A Checklist will serve as a simple to-do list with Checklist Items that you can mark off as you work through an Action. For example, Kelly’s Checklist Items might include:

  • Schedule meeting with the client
  • Produce wireframes
  • Review wireframes with the client

Kelly’s checklist for Build Website Milestone, Build Wireframe Action.

You can add notes to any Checklist Item as well as identify the Role that will be responsible for it, and whether it has been completed or not.

Note: The Checklist Items list view called My Checklist Items ToDo, will display all Checklist Items the user currently has assigned to them.

If you are creating Checklists while creating your Actions, use the Checklist Items Manager:

Action Checklist Manager in action.

However, if you are creating a Checklist Item on an existing Action, use the Related tab on the Project.

What if someone else is helping to complete the action?

The Contributor feature allows you to record multiple Roles against the one Action and to specify how many scheduled hours each of the Roles will contribute to the Action. While an Action can only have one owner, it can have multiple Contributors. 

Let’s imagine Layne has assigned Kelly the Action of “Designing Website Wireframes” which is an estimated 16 hours of work. If Kelly needs help from one or more team members, such as Tyler, we can make Tyler a Contributor. Let’s say Tyler is doing the reviews for Kelly’s website before the client sees the work for approvals. Tyler will be made a Contributor and assigned 4 of the 16 hours.

If you already have Actions, you can use the New Contributor feature from the Action’s Related tab:

The New Contributor dialogue creating a contributor assignment for Tyler.

If on the other hand, you are creating Contributor Assignments while creating your Actions, use the Resource Assignment Wizard:

Filter the available roles using Team or Skill and Skill Proficiency, press Search, then drag-and-drop the avatar for your chosen Role to the Action Contributors region.

Let’s create an Action with Checklist Items and a Contributor:

Layne is now ready to start assigning the work required to complete her Project. First, Layne has to navigate to the Grommets, Inc. project so she can use the Create Actions Page.

Create Actions page.

Here are the steps Layne uses to create her actions:

  1. Navigate to the Project against which the Actions are going to be created.
  2. Click the arrow drop-down on the top right.
  3. Click Create Actions.
  4. Click the Add Row(s) button or enter the number of rows you wish to add and click Add Row(s) to add more Actions until you have the desired amount.
  5. Use the drop-down menu to select the Milestone to which each Action belongs.
  6. Type in the Action Name.
  7. Type in the Billable and Non Billable Hours.
  8. Click the calendar icons to select the Start and End Dates.
  9. If Billing or Cost Rate is set to Skill-based, select “Skill” from the drop-down.
  10. Use the Action Owner drop-down to pick from the active Roles.
  11. Click the Assignment Wizard icon to create a Contributor
    a) Use the filters to filter the list of Roles.
    b) Click the Search button.
    c) Drag and Drop the profile photo of one of the Roles on to Action Contributors.
    d) Click Save.
  12. Click the Checklist Items icon to add Checklist Items.
    a) Enter the checklist item in the name field.
    b) Select the person responsible for completing the item from the Role drop-down list.
    c) Optional: enter notes.
    d) Click tick icon to save.
    e) Click New Item to add another checklist item.
    f) Repeat steps 1-4 for each new item.
    g) Click Save Items.
  13. Click the Create Actions button and return to the project to see the actions.

Expanded Project, Milestones, and Actions Overview for our project. Note that the “Build Framework Actions has a checklist and the “Has Contributors” icon.


Note: There are additional ways to add actions to milestones:

  • Add actions from the Project menu
  • Add actions directly from the Gantt Chart
  • Add actions via the Create Actions page
  • Add actions via the ‘Add Action’ component on the Track Pad 
  • Add actions via the Whiteboard
  • Add actions from the Overview Tab of the Project Overview page 

Before we move on…

Layne has created and assigned all the Actions for the website build project. Next Layne looks at how the team record their annual leave in Mission Control.

Ready to move on? Take the quiz below to test your knowledge.