According to a study conducted by Project Management Institute (PMI) in 2011, the US spends $2.3 trillion every year on projects, an amount equivalent to one quarter of the nation’s GDP. Considering that only 29% of these projects are actually delivered on time without exceeding the budget, there is an immediate need to boost efficiency levels. PMI estimates that 90% of companies lack project management strategies to execute a project successfully and that is where project management software comes into play. Currently, only 17.6% of companies have professional software in place, thereby, proving the huge potential of this market.
What to Look for in Project Management Software?
It is of foremost importance that you choose project management software that suits your business purpose perfectly. There are numerous different software options on the market, each catering to a variety of industries. Choose the one that suits your line of work and is able to handle complex project tracking and management issues. Choose the software that is equipped with the best collaboration tools (such as, emails and web meetings) and which allows global communication between team members. The software should be able to manage complex resource management (employees, budget and time) and project management (prioritization and assigning of tasks, deadlines, evaluation and tracking of project progress). Most importantly, the software should be easy-to-use and must have a good support system (user guide, support on call).
Obviously all those features listed above are only worth having if you can and need to make good use of them. So select a tool that suits the size and type of business.
Here are a couple of popular Project Management Tools, each having benefits of their own and suitability to particular needs.
The following are six popular project management tools that have been successfully tested by various organizations for efficiency, reliability and user friendliness:
Although the project management market is dominated by big wigs, such as Microsoft and Oracle, companies like Basecamp have also made a name for themselves because of their excellent innovations. Basecamp is one of the most common project management applications which uses a web-based solution for tracking, collaboration, communication and management purposes. It consists of a central database for managing all the projects and has features, such as public message boards, time tracking, milestone tracking and automated e-mail notifications. It comes with multilingual support and its user friendly interface is considered to be one of the most important factors for its success.
It is a great tool for those that need a good collaboration tool but do not want highly complex reporting and scheduling tools.
This online project management tool offers all the functionality you need to effectively manage your projects online.
One of the beautiful things about an online tool is that it can be used anywhere. If you travel for business or your team is dispersed across the globe, projectmanger.com allows you to effectively collaborate, manage and track your projects.
It has a clean easy to use interface that allows you to manage your team and the various components of the project such as schedule, issues, risks, changes, time, cost and files. It also provides collaboration and reporting tools.
Quality analysis of a project (verification and validation) plays an important role in every project management cycle. Lighthouse helps in tracking bugs and issues related to a project which also includes following its timelines and milestones. It helps companies manage and prioritize their tickets from the inbox and can be integrated with different clients. The biggest advantage of Lighthouse is that tasks, such as project creation and ticket tracking are nicely designed so much so that the user needs little time to familiarize himself with the software.
This software is based on wiki functionality and it includes ticket tracking, timeline functionality and roadmap (showing number of open and closed tickets).
Trac is an open source software and is specifically designed for software development projects. Trac helps in seamless referencing between bugs, tasks, tickets and change sets. The timeline shows the past and present project events in order to help in tracking; the roadmap shows the milestones that need to be achieved.
This cloud-based management tool appeals to both small and big businesses for its ability to drill down to granular data. It comes with an effective reporting functionality and an easy-to-use interface. Fogbugz lets both the manager and his team track bugs, their history, developer comments, projects timeline and client comments, making it one of the most popular project management software options in the IT world.
This is a project management tool that gives you complete control over all the files and communications for unlimited number of projects. The tool has unlimited storage space and is installed on your company’s local server.
With this software, unlimited projects can be divided into groups for better management. It offers features, such as time tracking, scheduling, ticket management and milestones. The software also includes features, such as file sharing and reminders and can be extended to suit business-specific requirements. The software can be used by a large number of users which allows the entire project management team, including the client and contractors, to be on the same level.
Whether you own a small business or a big MNC, project management software not only simplifies but also streamlines your processes. Having an efficient project management software in place accounts for better reliability, efficiency and, of course, better ROI for an organization.
There are many different types of software online and offline that perform numerous functions to help you better run your projects. Depending on your need you can find multiple tools to manage different components or an all-encompassing tool that you can highly customize to your organizations needs. Whatever your need, project management tools should definitely be part of your project management toolkit.
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