How To Use Asana: A 2-Minute Video

Jackie Bavaro

We recently put together a little video for people using Asana for the first time. It introduces some of the basic ideas and functionality, and also shows some new features like “Today/Upcoming” views and priority headings.

If you never got around to making a movie night out of watching the video of Justin’s open house presentation, this is a good Asana 101. I had fun making this video, and I’m looking forward to sharing more videos and articles with you soon! I’ve found that the more I learn about the product, whether it’s advanced features or best practices, the more ways I find to use it.


Text Only Version

Asana is the modern way to work together. We built Asana so you can spend less time in meetings, writing status emails, tracking down updates, and generally doing “work about work.” With Asana, you can work faster and take on bigger and more interesting goals.

The application is organized into three panes: On the left are the projects in the current workspace. When you add people to your team’s workspace they get access to all of the projects. In the center is the name of the selected project, and the checklist of tasks in that project. Expand the right pane to edit task details like the assignee, due date, and comments.

Adding and editing tasks
Adding tasks is fast. Think of the task list like a text editor. Each line is a task, just start typing and press Enter to create a new task. Create priority headings by typing a colon. Keyboard shortcuts make navigating and batch editing with multi-select even faster.

The shortcut bar at the bottom of the screen lists the most common shortcuts so you don’t have to remember them. To see the full list, click on “more…”.

Working with other people
You can use the assignee field to pass a task to one of your coworkers once you’ve done all you can on a task. Your coworker will get an email about the task.

You can also add Followers, which is like cc-ing someone on an email. When someone comments on a task, it will be emailed to all of the followers. You can reply to the email and your update will appear automatically in Asana.

My Tasks
People do many types of work each day from interviewing candidates to following up with customers. Asana is the central place to keep all of your tasks so you can stay on top of all your responsibilities.

New tasks that people assign to you and tasks you email to x@mail.asana.com come into the New Tasks section where you can mark when you plan to work on them. You can also view tasks in the project priority order by clicking on Project. When you complete tasks, the followers are notified automatically.

Feedback
If you have questions, suggestions or comments you can contact us here – we would love to hear from you!

  1. avatarTerje Pedersen

    I hope the next blog entry is “How to get access to Asana, in 2 minutes” ;-)

    I would love to test Asana, I have tested a lot of such solutions and Asana is on my top list of untested solutions. Currently I’m using Apollo instead.

  2. avatarDonald Jordan

    This looks exactly like what I have been searching for to organize several of my projects. I keep coming back to this site in the hope that the beta has been expanded. I am currently an instructional designer and was formerly a systems analyst and would love to help with beta testing when your pool expands. Until then, thanks for the videos.

  3. avatarBrendan Works

    I’ve also been checking back frequently to see the status of this code. But looking at Wrike, that’s clearly a more mature product. Asana looks really promising, but it’s still going to be v 1.0 software. I can’t put my stuff at risk for a 1.0 release. Wrike, on the other hand, has been out for a few years. Even if Asana has some slicker features, the business case just isn’t compelling to wait on their vaporware. Sadly, because it looks amazing!

  4. avatarMatthias

    I’m sure you have heard this over and over, but how soon are you guys creating a good app for the ipad? The iphone app has not enough horse power to keep me up and running in the field. Thanks.

  5. avatarMakis Kouloumbis

    Is there a “pop-up” functionality… so even if you are not in the page of Asana, you are notified that something is due today?
    Also, due is only on a day level, and it’s not possible to specify the specific time within a day. Is this the case.

    Thank you in advance for your feedback.

  6. avatarS Burch

    I would love to see the ability to create project templates or copy an existing project. The majority of our projects follow the same basic flow with multiple progressive deadlines.

    1. avatarZoe

      You can ‘duplicate’ a project – when in the project, click on Project Actions at the top right next to the project title (with a downwards arrow icon) and choose duplicate project. This copies all the subheadings and tasks within the project. Hope this helps!

  7. avatarInterior Design Concepts

    Great work! This is the kind of info that should be shared around the web. Shame on Google for not positioning this put up upper! Come on over and visit my web site . Thank you =)

  8. avatarmax hodges

    I see that Asana is mostly about to-do lists. But is there some feature, like in basecamp, for just having a conversation or passing information to someone without it being a task?

    for example I may want to share some training information with my team, inform them about a new company policy, or get their input when deciding priority of a project.

    I guess we should just use email for that instead? But since I’m new to Asana, I just wanted to ask in case there is some feature I’m not aware of yet.

    Cheers
    Max

  9. avatarGil

    I’ve mistakenly ‘pressed’ Backspace twice and that deleted an entire project… :-(
    How do I restore these tags?
    Please assist ASAP

    Gil.

  10. avatarFede

    Awesome product. Good work!!!

    I love the shortcut features, such as priority heading using :

    Hopefully we can see more of these! Tag shortcut would be nice, maybe something like

  11. avatarMorgan

    Hi,

    Is there a way to run summary reports to provide information to stakeholders who are not using Asana? I’m using Asana as a CRM to track leads and would like to extrapolate the information I’ve already entered into a report for my board and potential investors.

    Any suggestions would be very much appreciated.

    best,
    morgan

  12. avatarZoe

    Hi,

    Is there a way to duplicate a task? I know you can duplicate projects and you can set tasks to repeat on a regular basis, but I have a task ‘template’ with subtasks attached which is used sporadically, which I have been copying and pasting into a new task every time I need to use it. It would be very helpful if there was a quicker way to duplicate a task with subtasks.

    Any advice appreciated!

  13. avatarBevCapeCod

    New to Asana. Watched the tutorial. The girl speaks really fast and the video moves quickly. I watched it twice and still feel a little lost. I am going to attempt to add a project and see if I can do it.

  14. avatarBrandon

    This is great, can’t wait to field test.

    The app runs a little slow on a two year old netbook. I’d love if it were smoother or had a low-end friendly version.

  15. avatarMaryam Etherton

    The following time I read a blog, I hope that it doesnt disappoint me as much as this one. I mean, I know it was my choice to read, but I really thought youd have something attention-grabbing to say. All I hear is a bunch of whining about something that you can fix should you werent too busy looking for attention.

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