July 7, 2024 (6d ago)

Project Management Burn Up Chart

Discover how to use a burn up chart in project management for tracking progress and forecasting timelines effectively.

Tyler Smith
Tyler Smith
Product/Engineering, OneTask
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Cover Image for Project Management Burn Up Chart

How can a burn up chart improve your project management? The answer is that burn up charts help track progress and visualize scope changes in real-time, offering clear insights for project forecasting and resource management.

What is a Burn Up Chart?

A burn up chart is a powerful project management tool used to track progress over time. Unlike burn down charts, which focus on the amount of work remaining, burn up charts visualize the total scope and the work completed, offering a clear view of your project trajectory.

Why Choose a Burn Up Chart?

Burn up charts are not just about tracking progress; they provide several benefits:

  • Clarity on Scope Changes: They make it evident when project scope changes, providing a full picture of why deadlines might shift.
  • Better Forecasting: By showing scope and progress, you can make more accurate predictions about project completion timelines.
  • Enhanced Communication: Both stakeholders and team members can easily understand the project's state at any given moment.

How to Implement a Burn Up Chart

Creating a burn up chart is straightforward. Follow these steps:

  1. Define the Total Scope: Determine the total amount of work. This could be in story points, hours, or another unit of measurement.
  2. Track Completed Work: Regularly update the completed work. This will involve collecting data at consistent intervals.
  3. Plot the Data: On the vertical axis (Y-axis), plot the total work and completed work. Over time, you'll see a curve that represents progress.

Below is a simple example of what a burn up chart might look like:

Burn Up Chart Example

Real-World Application

Imagine leading a software development project. With a burn up chart, you can visualize how many features have been completed compared to the total planned features. If the total scope increases due to additional requirements, this change is transparent and can be communicated clearly to all stakeholders.

Tools and Software for Burn Up Charts

Several tools can help you create and manage burn up charts effortlessly:

  • JIRA: Offers built-in burndown and burn up chart functionalities.
  • Trello: Can be customized with power-ups to visualize burn up charts.
  • Excel and Google Sheets: Manual setup, but highly customizable and versatile.

How OneTask Can Help

OneTask can transform your task management experience by offering intelligent task prioritization and automated reminders, which can be particularly useful when tracking the progress represented in your burn up chart. OneTask’s integration with Google Calendar and Gmail ensures that you stay informed and on top of your project updates in real-time.


A burn up chart is an indispensable tool for anyone looking to gain a comprehensive understanding of project progress and scope changes. For further reading on related project management metrics, check out these articles on agile metrics and capacity planning.

By incorporating tools like burn up charts and leveraging the capabilities of OneTask, managing your project's timeline and scope can become significantly more efficient and transparent.

Tyler Smith

Product Management & Engineering Enthusiast

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Summer 2024.

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