Project management software makes it easier to organize your company’s projects and plan workflows, which can improve efficiency and save time. However, many small businesses still don’t use this valuable tool because they don’t see the value in it or they think it will be too complicated to set up and use. Here are five reasons why project management software should be an essential part of your business plan and operations.
1) Improve Productivity
The rise of project management software has changed how people plan and execute tasks. If you’re a small business owner or an independent contractor, you need to ensure that you’re using a quality project management tool—and no, Excel doesn’t count!
There are many different types of PM tools available on the market today, each designed to improve efficiency in specific ways. Before you choose one, make sure it fits your needs and goals. Here are five reasons why project management software can help your business:
2) Create Better Documentation
As a project manager, you may find yourself bogged down with more documentation than you can handle.
From tasks to documents to file attachments, there’s a lot of information to keep up with.
This can lead to stressed-out employees who don’t know where they stand and many late nights trying to update your records. And while it might not be possible or even wise to eliminate all forms of documentation, your business can save time and money by creating better documentation.
Here are five tips on how to do just that:
- Use templates: Templates allow you to create repeatable, standardized documents that require little effort when it comes time to fill them out.
- Track changes: Not only does tracking changes help prevent errors in your document (and thus reduce rework), but it also allows team members to see what has changed from one version of a document to another—helping them understand why changes were made and which version is most current.
- Don’t reinvent the wheel: If someone else has already created a template or document that will work for your purposes, consider using theirs instead of starting from scratch.
- Set expectations: Clearly communicate to those filling out forms what their responsibilities are and make sure everyone understands exactly what needs to be included.
- Streamline sharing: When appropriate, use cloud storage solutions like Dropbox or Google Drive to share files between teams instead of emailing large files back and forth repeatedly throughout an entire project cycle.
3) Collaborate Easily and Effectively
Project management software can help you work better together with your team and streamline your workflow. There are plenty of project management tools out there, but choosing one that’s right for you—whether it’s Slack, Asana, Basecamp or something else—is a process worth investing time in.
Here are some tips to guide you through:
1) Figure out what works best for your company.
2) Consider what you need from a tool: Do you want something simple? Or do you need something more advanced?
3) Evaluate features, such as integrations, offline access and multiple platforms.
4) Check customer reviews to see how other people feel about it (just make sure not to rely on these alone).
5) Consider cost—you don’t necessarily have to spend a lot of money on a good project management tool.
4) Track Expenses Efficiently
Tracking your expenses is not only good practice in terms of your budget, but it can also be an effective way to keep track of business-related purchases and reimbursable expenses. Proper expense tracking will not only help you to manage money effectively, but it can also be a great way to find areas where you might be able to save or make more efficient use of resources.
The most common type of project management software used by businesses today allows users to easily create expense reports from their data and export them into a format that’s compatible with popular accounting software packages.
Some even include advanced features like integrations with payroll systems that allow employees to have their salary automatically deducted based on how much they spend on projects during each pay period.
5) Learn From Past Projects
Understanding what went wrong in past projects can help you find efficient ways to deal with similar issues in your current or future projects. Use what you’ve learned to improve project management and make processes more streamlined and productive.