Event planning and management

How to create an event planning project in Asana

There are a few ways to create your event project plan. To get started quickly:

  1. Start with the event planning template and customize it for your team’s needs.
  2. Import an existing spreadsheet where you currently track event plans.

How to access all Asana templates

GIF demonstrating how to access templates in Asana from the +button in the top bar

If you’re using a Personal plan, prefer to build your own event planning project from scratch, or want general best practices for Asana projects get started with these project creation instructions.

Invite vendors and contractors to your event project as guests

You might kick off work with vendors in email, but consider inviting key vendors or contractors as guests into your event project. Making it easy for everyone to see deadlines, to-dos, and attachments helps ensure things get done on time. It also simplifies how you keep track of important files like contracts and invoices.

Tips for managing and doing event work

Now that you’ve built your event planning project, these tips will help you manage and track every detail as work gets underway.

1. Post status updates and see project activity in Overview

SCREENSHOT of a project status update in Asana with activity feed showing task updates

As your team brings the event plan to life, use the Overview tab to post updates and see a running list of project activity. In the status update, you can drag and drop highlights into your updates to share charts or milestones. Asana will save your status update template if you want to follow the same format every time.

2. Map out your event plan (and adjust as things come up) with Timeline

Most event plans have critical deadlines and dependencies leading up to the big day. Timeline helps you map these out in your plan before you start to ensure all the pieces fit together for a seamless event.

GIF of project plan creation with Asana Timeline feature

How to create your plan with Timeline:

  1. Create tasks for all your event to-dos in List View.
  2. Click the Timeline tab at the top of your project to shift into Timeline View.
  3. Schedule tasks by dragging and dropping them onto the timeline. If you spot timing conflicts, move tasks to reschedule them.
  4. Extend the task date ranges so assignees can better budget their time to work on it leading up to the deadline.
  5. If tasks need to be completed in a certain order, create dependencies between them by hovering over a task, then dragging the dot to a related task to connect them.

Once work is underway, Timeline can also help you quickly address conflicts before they derail your plan. For example, if booking your event venue takes longer than expected, you can shift dependent tasks in Timeline. Task assignees automatically get notified that their deadlines have been adjusted. Work can then start at the right time—without causing confusion, extra meetings, or a mad scramble after it’s already too late.

3. Keep track of important emails (while spending less time in your inbox)

SCREENSHOT of Outlook and Gmail Asana integrations for emails and inbox

You can always invite vendors to your event project, but if you communicate via email, try the Asana for GmailOutlook, or other email client add-ons. When you get emails with important documents or actionable work, you can add them to Asana right from your inbox to assign them as a task, add to your event project, and more. Key planning details and to-dos won’t keep getting lost in email (and you don’t have to spend so much time organizing your inbox.)

4. Save time on every event plan and never miss important steps with templates

Every event is different, but typically they share a core checklist. Instead of losing time recreating it for each event, or keeping it a doc that’s disconnected from where your plans are actually coming to life, you can build and save your event templates in Asana.

GIF of saving an Asana project as a template to reuse

  1. Build out your core event checklist in a project. Unless the same person completes the same task every time, do not assign tasks or add due dates.
  2. Click the ... in the project header and choose Save Project as a Template.
  3. Prevent edits or changes to the template by making it a comment-only project
  4. For every event afterwards, copy your template by clicking the orange + buttonProject, then heading to the tab for your organization’s saved templates.
  5. As you continue to refine your event checklist, you can update your template to ensure you don’t repeat mistakes or use outdated tactics.

Tips for managing day-of event work

1. Work on the go on and offline with Asana’s mobile apps

In the days leading up to your event and the day of, your team will likely be onsite preparing—making it hard to know what’s left to do and to access key details quickly. Asana’s mobile app keeps your team connected to the event plan (even if you’re offline on iOS or Android) before, during, and after the event.

SCREENSHOT of Asana mobile task for event planning

For example, you could annotate feedback directly on an event photo before sharing it out or confirm the event agenda was emailed to all attendees on time—all from mobile. This strengthens collaboration between event teammates even if they’re in different places.

2. Keep real time conversations actionable with the Slack integration

Many teams use both Asana and Slack to coordinate and communicate about work—especially when it’s go time for an event. Instead of picking one tool or the other, teams can use them together with the Asana for Slack integration.

GIF of creating an Asana task from a Slack message with integration

If a teammate asks for some feedback on their keynote presentation, but you’re running another errand for the event, you can create an Asana task right from the Slack conversation so you don’t forget and have all the original context.

Tips for reporting on event work and progress

To learn how to create reports to analyze event progress, start here. To learn how to post and keep track of event status updates, start here.

Monitor progress and manage staffing across multiple events with Portfolios and Workload

To understand event progress and gauge team bandwidth, event planners usually piece together information in meetings, emails, or spreadsheets, which can be time consuming and inaccurate. Instead, create a project portfolio with all your event plans to see real-time progress, event dates, and priority all in one place.

Then use the Workload tab to visualize your team’s capacity across events based on tasks they’re already assigned in Asana. Workload helps you make informed staffing decisions to keep workloads balanced and events on track.

SCREENSHOT of using Workload to see teammate who’s overloaded and reassigning their work

Workload defaults to task count, but we know not all tasks are created equally. You can set up effort custom fields across portfolio projects to get a better sense of the total hours or effort level going into each task.

Resources for planning and managing events in Asana

More of a visual learner? Want to see how our customers plan events with Asana? Check out these resources:

Resources Link
Event planning template Use template
Video tutorial Watch How to Asana
On-demand course Register for Asana Academy
Case studies See how AutodeskG2, and DMEXCO plan events with Asana
Event professionals’ guide to productivity ebook Read ebook
Connect with Community Attend an upcoming training or start a thread on our community forum