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Why you need a project management software (and what on Earth it is)

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Why you need a project management software (and what on Earth it is)

When it comes to organizing work, you have quite a few options: spreadsheets, to-do apps, checklists, just to name a few, however, the bigger your team and the more complex your work activity, the more difficult juggling everything gets. Organizing a big team’s workload might need a dedicated project management software that facilitates communication and collaboration. The right tool will affect the success of your project, moreover, it can actually make or break a project. Before we get into why a project management software is useful, let’s see what types you can find out there.

The types of project management software:

  1. On-premise - These solutions are installed locally into your company’s servers. This means that access to the system is restricted to devices connected to your local servers and it might not be available for example during a power outage. Examples: JIRA and Microsoft Project
  2. Cloud-based - These solutions (project management apps) are hosted on cloud servers, meaning that your users and/or clients can access the projects from anywhere, anytime, generally through a web browser. Examples: Scrum mate, Asana, Podio
  3. Individual - These are simple solutions, suitable for those with lighter workloads or for those who are looking to test out the waters before committing to a more serious software. They are web-based and lightweight with fewer features. Examples: Trello, Evernote
  4. Open API - These types of project management software allow the users to add to the existing application, basically, you can adjust them to better suit your preferences. They also give the users bigger freedom in setting up their projects, depending on their specific business needs. Examples: Clarizen, Trello

Important uses and features of a project management software:

  1. Collaboration - When managing a big project with multiple team members involved and designated with specific tasks, you need to make sure that everyone is on the same page and always in the know. Communicating through a project management solution with the right people, in real time can vastly reduce time lost in looking for sources and answers. It also helps to share documents, updates, and notifying each other of important information. Example features: file sharing, team communication, customer data sharing, team dashboard.
  2. Scheduling and planning - When working on a complex project with several phases and different assignments, it’s crucial to set deadlines, priorities and establish guidelines as to what needs to be accomplished, when, by whom. Utilizing a project management solution can help you outline and make tasks visible, also avoid misunderstandings. Example features: task priority, shred team calendar, time slot.
  3. Resource management - Knowing who works on what within a project is essential, however, all the team members need to have access to the materials, resources and equipment used as well. A project management solution can outline these along with scheduling and cost-planning, helping you reduce expenses. Example features: project delivery status, editable data storage.  
  4. Budget management – Each project has its own budget and a “project manager’s goal is to keep the actual cost below, or at least at, the estimated cost in order to maximize the profit earned by the company for the project.” A project management software can hugely help you manage expenses accurately and in a timely manner. Example features: time tracking, budget report, automated invoicing.
  5. Documentation and reporting – Whether you are the Excel spreadsheet or the pen-and-paper kind of person, you might want to consider opting for a project management solution since 88% of spreadsheet data contains errors. When it comes to tracking your team project’s progress, you definitely need a surefire way to keep everything in check and a PM solution can guarantee accurate data-based documentation. Example features: central data storage, quick access, reporting.

As you can see, the options and features are pretty much endless, with countless great options out there. If you think that a PM solution could be useful for your business (and trust us on this, it certainly could), request Liferay’s free demo today and see for yourself what it can do for you.