When we think about project management software we usually visualize spreadsheets, timelines, and graphs. While these tools are certainly elements of any good project management software tool they are just one dimension. If you step back and take a broader view you quickly see that the real value in any project management system is not the metrics or the monitoring. The real benefit is the ability to improve communication and encourage collaboration. The goal is to produce your product faster, smarter, cheaper, and at the same time keep your customers happy.
While it sounds cold to admit it, the truth be told, the end goal is to help your company save money, make money, and be more profitable so that it can do all those things that make its people happy. Better communication, improved time management, enhanced materials control and supply chain management, and all the other tools that today’s state of the art project management software systems include can help you get there.
Continuing with the broad view, the people affected by your project management system are not just your employees and management. It’s about your customers too. When collaboration tools work the way they should you’ll have better communication inside your company as well as with your customers and clients. Communicating with customers is one of the reasons that the most up-to-date project management systems now incorporate CRM (Customer Relationship Management) tools.
Of course, no project management software system can do it all for you. It is up to you to make sure that you implement your tool effectively. That sounds like an awfully tall order. Particularly if you are required to acquire significant computing power and personnel in order to implement your system. Luckily, it is possible today to get all the project management tools you need without buying anything but a desktop or laptop computer. You don’t need to buy expensive servers or hire expert programmers. Instead, you can get all the features you need by subscribing to a web enabled system.
When you opt to use a web enabled project management system you have a system that works when you work regardless of the time of day or day of the week. You don’t have to worry about backups, server technology, or technical support. That’s all taken care of for you. All you need to do is determine what you need, do a little homework, and start improving your processes immediately.
If you are already using a project management software system and haven’t looked at what is out there in some time, chances are you’ll be surprised by the advances that have been made over the past five to ten
years. If you don’t have a system yet, then you are in for a treat. Not only will you be able to find a system that meets your project management needs, chances are you’ll find one that will improve all your processes, from payroll to billing.
There has never been a better time to start managing your process more effectively. Not only will you start to see results in the bottom line quickly, you’ll be well positioned to take advantage of the market as it recovers.
When it comes to growing your business, "free" CRMs can end up costing you more than you think.
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