As a business grows comes the need for stronger organization and more diligent systems of project tracking. Implementing a management system for all ongoing work is a crucial step in taking a business to the next level, and a great number of effective project management tools are available online.
The Importance of Project Management
When a company reaches a certain level of business intake, it can have trouble efficiently managing projects without a system of project management. Several studies indicate that a large portion of projects fail in meeting a deadline, or go without ever being completed. It was found that only 2.5% of the companies being analyzed successfully finalized their projects. A breakdown in the chain of project management can cost a business time and money.
Project management is critical to an organization in many ways, including:
- Improved customer satisfaction and overall pleasing delivery
- Stronger efficiency in service delivery
- Enriched growth and team development
- More competitive array of product or service offerings
- Flexibility in planning and scheduling
- Better sense of risk assessment
- Overall increase in quality and quantity of obtainable services or products
Implementing basic project management strategies can improve the way a company operates, business revenue and the overall success it is able to achieve.
Online Tools for Project Management
Effective company project management involves task and risk management tools, as well as resource storage access, and budgeting or performance assessment capacities. Ideal project management systems include collaboration tools, reporting software, mobile abilities, time and expense tracking, and scheduling options. Managing each of these is made simple with a wide variety of online tools, including:
- AgileZen is a project management and software development tool, offering abilities for project tracking, scheduling, recruitment and customer service tracking, for both issues and responses. This program is known for being visually friendly and uses Kanban technology for quick visuals of project progress. AgileZen offers a 30-day trial so that businesses can see if it is a good match, and the software is also offered as a free plan for open source projects.
- Do is a social productivity platform, whose slogan, “Get work done,” summarizes the overall purpose of the tool. Do offers excellent sharing capabilities, allowing team members to be added to projects and giving them the options to add tasks and plan events. The program is known for its simple dashboard, ease of use and functional mobile facilities. Additionally, this program is free, making it a viable option for small businesses or startups.
- Smartsheet allows its users to manage each aspect of project management and collaborate effectively. Each task within the program is available online, including alerts, reminders, calendars, reporting and file sharing. Each portion of the program is accessible online, allowing for quick teamwork for even the most geographically distant of teams. This program also offers thirty days at no charge, allowing users to test its capabilities on their own projects.
- 5pm is a platform management system that offers easy linking to Google Docs, a time tracking desktop widget, custom logos and avatars to personalize for a team, email integration and well-developed mobile app features. This PM system is used by large corporations, such as McDonalds and U.S. Bank, and in addition to offering a two-week free trial, 5pm allows potential users to “login” to an example of a typical organization setup, rather than just a standard demo or video tour of the program.
- Teambox says “for fun you have a Facebook, for work you need a Teambox.” However, the feeling of the overall platform is heavy social networking utility integration. Threaded conversations, activity feeds, user comments and inbox capabilities offer users the opportunity to connect quickly with team members, and it neatly pairs with Dropbox, which allows for quick storage and file sharing within a cloud digital storage system. Forbes named it a ‘must-have communication tool for business’ and an added bonus is that it’s free for up to five users. Additional users beyond the five incur a monthly charge.
- Basecamp, in the military sense, is known as a congregating place for the team, a place where plans are formed and decisions are made. Basecamp, the project management software, is exactly that. This online platform offers a variety of different task options, allowing users to create and link assignments and tasks from calendars and within conversations. File sharing is made simple and email notifications can be created to keep team members current on discussions and meetings as they happen. Basecamp offers a 60-day free trial.
When considering a project management system for a thriving business, it’s important to consider the system’s ease of use, collaborative abilities, integration capacities (for email, file sharing, etc.) and mobile capabilities, as most business, at some point, is carried out on the go. A well-implemented system of management can take a growing business from successful to unstoppable.
If you are ready to take your project management skills to the next level, Saint Mary’s University of Minnesota Online offers a superior Master of Science in Project Management Degree from the convenience of an online educational learning environment. The university has a rich history of education spanning over a century. The advantages this degree can provide for the professional project manager are limitless. Named one of the “Best National Universities” in 2012, Saint Mary’s University is ready to help you move your career forward.