With the rise of technology in our modern societies, comes the downfall of monopoly. There is no limit to how many options there are for goods and services, and this is true for project management software as well. There are thousands if not millions of options for software, and there is an endless number of different styles of and techniques for project management. So how can anyone figure out what software is right for them? The key to getting started is figuring out what the main features and tools are that you need from your software.
Some basic principles to remember when shopping for a project management software:
One common dimension that affects every project is time. Projects are inherently bounded by time as they are temporary endeavours, and so one important aspect that your project management software should have is some way of capturing time. This may be a calendar view or timeline, but regardless, you need to be able to track when crucial deadlines are approaching. As a project manager you will undoubtedly have a team to help you complete the project work. Your software should be able to let you create tasks, delegate them, and give you visibility into who is working on what and what the status is. The ability to couple tasks and the schedule is a powerful feature that many tools have in the form of a Gantt chart view. This also can help surface task dependencies and highlight roadblocks earlier.
What you should look out for:
Like with any software, as a user, you should have your own set of standards for the tool you are using. Some programs and applications are poorly laid out; even if it is a fully-featured product, having a negative user experience can be a deal-breaker. If the project management software you are using is hard to navigate, is it worth all of the extra time and effort you spend trying to understand it? There are also features to consider that do not directly deal with how to manage a project, but are more focused on the administrative side of things. For example, being able to import data can be a useful feature especially useful when moving from a different product, but may not affect your project directly. Conversely, exporting data is a key feature that will give you metrics on your project and allow you to figure out where the weak points in your process are. Another thing to consider when picking out project management software is what kind of support there is. Some companies have FAQs and guides, and others have portals that allow you to directly interact with a service and support agent. Different teams and managers have different requirements, so you must decide what is appropriate for your team.
What we recommend:
Now comes the hard part: trying to find the right project management software for you, your projects, and your team. If you’re looking for software that will cover virtually all of your project management needs, OneDesk may be the solution you’re looking for. With calendar views and Gantt charts, OneDesk gives you the ability to stay on top of your deadlines and dependencies. By setting up workflows and integrations in OneDesk, you can automate your process to keep your project moving with less management on your part and more visibility for your team. In order to get insightful analytics into your team’s workload and velocity, OneDesk has issue tracking, scheduling, and reporting to get you all of the details you need. On top of all that, OneDesk can be used on desktop or mobile devices, making it the ultimate project management software for anyone.
Photo Credit : Options / Jurgen Appelo / CC BY