First post and new to MS Project, so please bear with me if I forget some minor details.

My question is this: Is it possible to setup an indicator column in MS Project that displays a multi-tiered overdue/coming-due indicator?


If a task is overdue, we see a red indicator

If a task is 2 weeks from due date, orange

If a task is due this week, yellow indicator

If a task is over 2 weeks out and incomplete, a green indicator.

If a task is completed regardless of due date, we will see a blue indicator(or smiley face).

I have found several formulas and macros that do something similar or a portion of this, but none that are able to dissect the dates with such accuracy.

If anyone is capable of providing some insight on this it would be greatly appreciated. Please do not hesitate to let me know if you need any additional information.

  • You can accomplish what you need using some calculations and graphic indicators. However, you are going to have to define what you mean by "over due" and "due date". Are you comparing finish to baseline finish to determine due dates and overdue? Are you using deadlines? Give us a bit more to go on and we'll try to help.
    – JulieS
    Commented Mar 2, 2015 at 13:48

2 Answers 2


Thanks for the response. I will try to provide as much information as possible.

For this particular project we are using "Due Dates" as the date listed in the "Finish Date" column , anything that is not 100% complete as of the "Finish Date" column is classified as overdue. The additional indicators will help serve as progress indicators as we reach the impeding deadline.

I am still new to MS Project and have a lot to learn. If you need more detailed information please don't hesitate to ask, though it may take me sometime to locate.

Thanks again.

  • The finish date of a task is going to change as you track the task. For example: your original estimate was the task was going to take 10 days based upon two resources each working 80 hours. As the resources start working the task, they realize their initial estimates of 80 hours is too little. They've completed 40 hours (1 week) but need another 60 hour of work each. If you update the remaining work to 60 hours, Project will recalculate the new finish date. In order to compare - you need to set a baseline before tracking. Then I suggest comparing baseline finish to finish.
    – JulieS
    Commented Mar 3, 2015 at 15:31
  • Post back with whether you are using baselines and I'll step you through creating some custom formulas to test whether you are exceeding the baseline (Red), two weeks before the baseline finish (orange), etc.
    – JulieS
    Commented Mar 3, 2015 at 15:33

You have a couple of options here :

  1. Use traffic light indicators with MS Project which will allow to use highlight tasks. You can have your own formula to do whatever highlighting you want.

  2. Use the default built-in filters and highlight.

I have put together something similar. It may not match your exact requirement but may help you to get started.



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