In businesses, everything revolves around the goals and objectives that have to be achieved and then used to measure the level of success and growth of a company.
The modern workplace just continues to evolve, so naturally – project management is experiencing dramatic changes, too. Not tied to any particular industry, PM can be easily customized to meet the requirements of any organization.
No wonder so many project management solutions have come to life. With today’s technology, everything is much simpler than it used to be. The development of project management software created an opportunity for project managers to have a centralized way of storing all relevant data. We are talking here about issues like data backup, simpler budget tracking, clear delegation of assignments, as well as coaching and time monitoring of the work done by all team members.
The main benefit of all these tools is their flexibility. This allows a complete implementation of a hybrid approach that suits well the organization and the nature and rules of its business. They keep work well structured and defined through due dates, all while making it easy to adapt to changes quickly and easily.
However, we must keep in mind that a resistance to change is written down in human nature, and even when there are profit margins riding on the outcome, most of the people will more likely question why and should they be using these technological perks.
Project Management elements to keep an eye on
Project management software in it’s new form in particular. By definition:
PMS has the capacity to help plan, organize, and manage resource tools and develop resource estimates. Depending on the sophistication of the software, it can manage estimation and planning, scheduling, cost control and budget management, resource allocation, collaboration software, communication, decision-making, quality management, and documentation or administration systems.
When we take a look at all that Project management entails, there are four crucial elements that must work together seamlessly:
- Scope. Basically, it’s the project’s size, goal and requirements. Scope is a link between goals and the budget set to reach those.
- Resources. Here we have three essential aspects: people, followed by equipment and materials, to keep your team operating efficiently.
- Time. Time management is everything. For a task to be done successfully, one must set duration, allocate the task with the right resources and manage critical paths (tasks with zero float or no flexibility).
- Money. Bling! It all comes down to money in the end. In this case, it starts with money and ends with it. All tasks must have estimated and totaled cost but, unfortunately, this is a very icy terrain as not all estimates are as accurate and they are very susceptible to changes.
The best way you can use PMS to your advantage
You can collaborate more effectively. First of all, having in mind departmental and geographical boundaries, it’s sometimes hard for all team members to be aware of what is happening outside their micro team.
A real-time nature of a software-based service allows teams to collaborate successfully, avoiding any potential communication issues. Also, it can put a stop at all those “update” meetings that are, most of the time, a simple waste of time and resources.
You will get better at scheduling. For example, a Gantt chart and all its PMS alternatives are making it easy to keep the track of milestones in a project. The project timeline can be constantly updated and that comes very handily when circumstances suddenly change and you are to shift resources and notify everyone.
Also, an implementation of instructions, in a clear and accessible way, now is a piece of cake when you get to display individual tasks visually, letting everyone know where they stand at the click of a button.
You can communicate better with your clients. With online cloud-based software, it’s easy to give updates and share real-time information. They can also give you their feedback and edit relevant areas, so both parties don’t waste time.
You can delegate tasks more easily. It’s rather complicated to delegate adequately every single task on large scale projects. Especially if those projects incorporate other departments and locations. With PMS, you can do it by inserting a task into the project and bypassing briefing each person one at a time.
You can manage your budget throughout the project. Many flexible and multipurpose tools have the option of keeping quantifiable evidence of resources management and logistic. By seeing costs in real-time and identifying where too much money is being spent, it is much easier to control the budget on the spot.
You can save and share documents just by the click of a button. Having everything centralized in one place is the best way to have your data under control. Aside from the fact that it makes documents hard, if not impossible to lose, this perk, in particular, allows users to track any modifications or submissions. This brings in more accountability and transparency to the table. And that is always a good thing.
PMS helps you standardize processes. When everyone is required to provide the same information and use the same templates when creating and editing documents, being on the same page doesn’t seem so hard anymore.
You can integrate new team members with more precision. When there is someone new in a team, a lot of time is wasted on simply filling that person in with all the details. However, with PMS, a new addition to the team can clearly review the progress of the project from the start, as well as any direction changes along the way. In other words, it requires minimal effort to adjust while being able to offer effective contribution straight away.
It makes remote working much more effective. Collaborative software allows employees to do work from a distance, without becoming detached from the team. Everything there is to know about the project is already within the software and so, project managers can be confident that tasks are still getting done.
Even though advances in technology sometimes seem like a bit of a hassle to get used to, they can bring thunderous savings and improvements to the way projects are managed. Not only is the gain monetary, but you’re team can grow and work together in a healthier way when stress and pressure is reduced.