Project management can broadly be defined as the process involved in the initiation, planning, execution, control and closing of the work done by a team. Projects are often pursued for the attainment of specific and pre-determined goals. A project is said to have been completed successfully if it meets specific success criteria which had been agreed on before the project kicked off. Projects vary in their size and scope with some being small while others being large. An example of a small project can be something like moving offices from one location to another, while a big project can be something like the construction of a bridge connecting two towns or cities.
Regardless of the size or scope of the project, every project must have a project manager and a project team. As the name suggest, the project manager is the head of the team. He or she is expected to set the vision for the team and direct the team members toward achieving the set goals. The project team is tasked with implementing the vision of the project manager as captured in the project plan. The success of any project is dependent on how effectively the project team works with the project manager.
What is Project Management Software?
A project management software is a software solution which helps businesses to stay organized. Project management software can be used by project teams to track the project, check progress and collaborate with team members. There are many different types of project management software with some being web-based, cloud-based or standalone. Web -based applications can be deployed from the web, cloud-based applications can be accessed from the cloud while standalone applications can be deployed from the company’s computers in which they are installed.
Features of Project Management Software
There are many different types of project management software. Each project management software has its own set of features; however, most of them share the following features:
- Project planning and scheduling- the best project management software allows the project manager to assign duties and set deadlines for tasks that need to be completed.
- Team collaboration- In some projects, there is need for different team members to access each other’s work so that they can do their part and contribute to the overall success of the project.
- Time tracking- This feature helps in ensuring that the various tasks that need to be completed in the project are completed on time so that the project can be delivered according to the timetable.
- Reporting- A good software will help with the generation of reports on the progress of the project, generate financial records, invoices and final project report.
Benefits of Project Management Software
Businesses that use project management software can get to enjoy the following benefits:
- Project collaboration which ensure that all tasks are done.
- Delegation of tasks -tasks are assigned to team members who have the requisite skills to complete the tasks.
- Tracking the project- This ensures that the project manager knows what has been done, what is being done and what is pending so that he or she can ensure that the project is completed within the agreed time.
Most Popular Project Management Software Options
There are many project management software solutions but here is a brief discussion of the most popular ones:
- Asana- This software facilitates team communication and collaboration. A project manager can create tasks within the project, assig them to the team and track the progress. Users can share notes with each other and comment on project matters.
- Trello- A Trello board is a visual collaboration tool that can be used to assign and track tasks. The project manager can list the to-do items on the board then assign them to team members. Completed tasks can then be dragged to the “Done” column.
- Toggl- Toggl is a web-based time keeper that can be used to track and record the time spent in completing a given task. This tool is very helpful in hourly jobs