MS Project: How to Allow Weekend Work for Just One Task

By default, Microsoft Project schedules tasks during regular office hours. Meaning from Monday to Friday, 8:00 AM til 5:00 PM.

This accommodates most situations, but sometimes you need to schedule work on weekends or outside of business hours.

In this article I’ll show you how how to allow weekend work for a specific task.

Why scheduling outside the regular calendar?

Many situations come to mind where you’d want to have project activities continue outside of regular working hours.


  • Weekend work to set up an IT system for go-live on Monday
  • Maintenance work for buildings or machinery
  • Machines that are operated in night or weekend shifts

The thing is we don’t want to change the overall project calendar. All we want to do is have a specific task continue on weekends.

(Note: In this context, you may also want to add overtime with special weekend rates).

Watch the video:

Allowing weekend work for one task

Here’s how to achieve the desired exception for one task.


Task 1: Paint interior of house (3 days, finishes on Friday)
Task 2: Drying phase (2 days, schedule for Saturday & Sunday)
Task 3: Complete interior setup and furnishing (5 days, Monday – Friday)

Task 2 is just a dummy task to factor in the necessary drying phase for the paint.

Normally task 2 would be scheduled starting on the following Monday, because MS Project doesn’t schedule work on weekends.

But we want the paint to dry over the weekend so we can start on Monday with setting up our home. So we need to set up an exception and schedule task 2 (drying phase) on the weekend.

Step 1: Create an additional calendar

Create a new calendar which allows working on Saturday and Sunday.

The additional calendar doesn’t replace your existing calendar. It just supplements it by scheduling specific tasks on this extra calendar.

Go to Project and choose Change Working Time:

Project tab in MS Project 2016

Choose Create New Calendar …

How to create a new calendar in MS Project 2016

Enter the name of the new calendar:

New calendar details

Afterwards press OK.

Step 2: Maintain working times in new calendar

Choose Work Weeks and then double click on the first entry:

Maintain working times for calendar

Now you can edit the working times for every work day.

Enter the working times you want to have for Saturday and Sunday.

Maintain working times

Press OK.

Step 3: Link your task to the new calendar

Go back to your task / Gantt view.

Double click on the task you want to extend to the weekend.

MS Project 2016 Task view

Go the the Advanced tab. Then choose the calendar you’ve just created.

Advanced task settings in MS Project 2016

Press OK.


Take a look at the screenshot below. Now our drying phase task is scheduled for Saturday / Sunday:

Gantt view of MS Project



  • Adrian Neumeyer

    Hi! I’m Adrian, founder of Tactical Project Manager and Ex-Project Manager with over ten years of experience in project management. Led large-scale IT implementations and business projects. I started Tactical Project Manager to offer you a straightforward and pragmatic approach to project management, enabling you to lead any project with confidence.

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