The Advantages of Project Management Software

the-advantages-of-project-management-software

Two of the largest hurdles that project managers find themselves constantly struggling against are finishing projects ahead of schedule and ensuring that projects come in under budget.

Benefits of Project Management Software 

Project management software addresses both of these concerns by enabling project managers to automate processes that would otherwise be prone to oversights, errors and a mismanagement of resources.

Through streamlining the planning and resource allocation phases of each project, project heads can feel confident that cost control and resource allocation processes are optimized and documentation is made every step of the way.

The magic behind most project management software packages starts with the ability to visually depict and juggle each project’s phases and those phases’ interconnections.

From there, project management software provides managers with the scheduling resources and resource allocation tools – particularly for your most valuable resource: your own employees – needed to reach your project’s deadline ahead of schedule and under budget.

Project Management Software Must Haves 

All project management software packages, though, are not created equal. Some excel in areas that others lag behind in while other packages are well-rounded planning, scheduling and cost control powerhouses.

Microsoft Project 

An example of a piece of project management software that does particularly well on the planning side is Microsoft Project.

Microsoft Project is part of the company’s enterprise project management system, and this software can help managers proactively gauge the project’s progress and monitor workloads in real time for optimal resource allocation.

Microsoft’s project management software is a great example of a package that gives you collaborative tools to coordinate between members of your team while presenting a project manager’s inner circle with an incredible sleek user interface.

https://products.office.com/en-us/project/project-and-portfolio-management-software

OmniPlan 

While Microsoft Project is arguably the project management software par excellence for PC users, a very popular option among Mac users is OmniPlan.

OmniPlan – a clever portmanteau of “omniscience” and the ability of managers to adequately “plan” and efficiently allocate resources – puts simplified project visualization tools right at the fingertips of iPad and Mac users.

Project tracking and an incredibly intuitive interface makes OmniPlan a crowd favorite among project managers around the country.

https://www.omnigroup.com/omniplan

Basecamp 

Although the two packages listed above are probably the most popular options for PC and Mac users, respectively, these pieces of project management software might be outperformed in certain niche areas by companies you haven’t necessarily heard much from recently.

Basecamp, for instance, is a relative newcomer on the project management software scene since it specializes in the task management phase of every project and is mainly accessed through mobile app.

This particular project management software is usually taken up by freelancers, small shops and medium-sized businesses eager to leverage and coordinate human resources to meet ambitious deadlines. Best of all, Basecamp requires absolutely no IT technical support and is fully cloud-enabled – and over 99.9% uptime isn’t too shabby either.

More Helpful Features 

Although getting everyone on the same page and coordinating the job duties of every team member is an essential side of resource allocation, perhaps as important is keeping an accurate tally of all documentation. Ensuring that documentation is secured in the cloud and accessible by all relevant team members should also be a feature of a well-rounded project management software package.

Even though web-based tools like GoogleDocs can help managers disseminate and store documents, project management software with built-in document storage tools greatly simplifies the process while offering the other benefits mentioned above. GoPlan and DotProject are two additional management framework tools that can make sure your next project starts (and ends) on the right foot.

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Top 5 WordPress Project Management Plugins

top-5-wordpress-project-management-plugins

When it comes to building user-friendly, easy-to-manage websites and blogs, WordPress is head and shoulders above the rest of the pack. What you may not know about WordPress, though, is that there are plugins available which can take your project management efforts to the next level. In many cases they allow for file centralization, discussion among team members and a way to much more clearly understand a project’s progress. And since they range in price from completely free to several hundred dollars, you’re sure to find one which fits your organization’s needs and budget.

Here are five of the top WordPress project management plugins for your consideration:

WP Project Manager: This plugin is free in its most basic state, and supports unlimited sites. However, the functionality of the free version is pretty limited. Beyond that, you can choose premium versions which allow for one site, five sites or an unlimited number of sites. Assign tasks, control which team members can access which information, track milestones, see all files in one place, and archive completed projects. The calendar gives you an overall view of all of your projects.

Project Panorama: This plugin has three versions – free, single site and unlimited sites. The free version features a bit more functionality than the free version of WP Project Manager – it allows for the tracking of overall progress, defining milestones and even discussion of projects among team members, with all notes and questions on one page. The upgraded versions also include an unlimited number of phases each project can be broken into, unlimited tasks, automatic progress adjustments, the ability to upload and store project-specific documents and the ability to password protect and limit projects to specific logins.

CollabPress: This collaboration tool, which also integrates with BuddyPress, allows for management of unlimited projects and tasks and unlimited comments. It also allows for file upload for all projects, task lists, tasks and comments. Calendar view allows users to get an overview on all projects currently in progress. Conveniently, users will automatically receive an email whenever a task is completed or commented upon. And an activity log tracks all activity, making it easy to go back and look over changes and updates. It also allows for use of built-in WordPress accounts and has front-end shortcode support.

SP Project & Document Manager: This file management and document collaboration system allows users to easily upload, organize, track and share documents, files, records and images pertaining to projects. The premium version adds more features, such as mobile readiness, the ability to add custom fields to forms, custom email notifications and auto deletion of files based on a set time.

Task Freak: This free plugin allows for project creation, assigning of rights to users as well as visitors, task creation and assignment, task discussion and the tracking of progress. Projects can be classified as either public or private. This plugin offers full integration with WordPress users and roles, and users are associated to projects by their WordPress role. This plugin is mobile friendly, accessible by smartphone and tablet.

Let one of these project management plugins make the often overwhelming task of managing projects one which can be completed efficiently and with greater collaboration among team members.

5 Affordable and Effective Project Management Applications

Setting up and managing a project is an important part of getting things done at any company. It’s an unfortunate truth that more than a few projects have been undone because they have been mismanaged, run inefficiently, or fallen apart. The modern era offers new and powerful ways to manage projects through the use of telecommunications, but it’s crucial to not be overwhelmed by what is out there and to maintain an on-time and on-budget pursuit of projects. Finding the best project management software can be a chore, so here are some of the top choices to help you stop worrying about that and get into the project itself as quickly as possible.

project management applications

Keeping Track of Ideas

In the first stages of a project you’re going to need software that helps you and your colleagues or employees keep track of ideas as and when they come up. Convenience is key to ensure distractions and imperfect memories don’t let an idea disappear. Similarly, powerful brainstorming tools can help keep track of everything. Keeping all the notes and being able to share them electronically helps to ensure the focus is on the ideas, not on remembering where you put that post-it note with a great idea on in.

For note-taking consider using a program like Evernote. Evernote is a very handy note-taking app that can be used on handheld devices, meaning as long as you can use your phone, you can take notes. What’s more the app doesn’t just provide ordinary text notes, it can also record you, store photographs as notes, and, if the hardware supports it, can perform handwriting recognition. As saves can be to the cloud, it’s simple to take notes where needed and retrieve them elsewhere as well as sharing them with colleagues.

When it comes to brainstorming and mind mapping, XMind is one of the best choices. It is a program which lets you create mind maps in a number of styles and to share them as needed without fuss. XMind will help in the early stages of a project by providing a clean visual interface that allows information and ideas to be kept track of, whether it’s the work of an individual or a group.

Once Underway

If your ideas are set and your project is ready to get underway, you want to find the best project management software available. If a project’s elements can be laid out clearly and assigned easily, and you can keep track of who is doing what at all times, you’ll be in a much better place to get things done properly and to handle any problems as they arise, before they have time to escalate. Fortunately there are quite a few good options out there in this regard, such as these;

  • Trello is an app that lets you create tasks, assign them, and get feedback, and lets everyone involved to add comments.
  • Wunderlist lets you create projects as to-do lists, and you can add sub-tasks to those items. You can share with others, add recurring to-dos, add reminders, and sync across all your devices.
  • Another great choice is Asana which performs similarly, but with a special emphasis on teamwork and making it easy to share ideas and monitor progress.

The above are just some of the options to help manage your projects efficiently, but they are among the best project management software choices out there. Finding the ones right for your objectives and your company can simplify projects enormously as you can devote less time to management and more to working on the project.