Not everyone needs to have access to every feature within your organization’s project management platform. From executives to IT staff, make sure to give the right software features to the right workers.
If your teams are starting to jump on the project management train, you may find yourself unsure of which tool is best suited to your needs. After all, there are quite a few platforms out there to help make managing these projects not only possible but vastly easier.
When you start looking at each platform, you will find yourself overwhelmed with the features. Some services offer so many features that it can get quite confusing. Do your teams genuinely need all of these features?
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While this is an important question to ask—especially when it comes to your budget—there is a better question to ask: What features do specific teams or workers need? If you can answer this question, you will be better equipped to make the right decision.
What is the answer to the question you asked? Well, in all honesty, it varies from company to company and project to project. However, there are some features that are more suitable for some workers. Let’s see if we can demystify it here and now.
Which workers need project management software features?
Managers and executives
While you may think that managers and executives must have a consistent view of every feature in a project management software platform, think again. All this suite needs to see are the big picture features: dashboards, reports, forms, Gantt charts, Kanban boards, workload reporting, invoicing and bookkeeping, schedule management, timeout charts, task dependencies, and time tracking.
What matters to managers and executives is the ability to quickly see what’s going on and the ability to create actionable data for the business. They need to be able to see that the project is on time and on budget and move forward smoothly. Anything else is a distraction.
Developers need to be able to quickly interact with the project management tool to keep track of not only what they have been assigned but also what they have accomplished and how others are doing. Developers need the tools to help manage periods of increased activity, where a certain goal has been set as well as a deadline.
To this end, developers need kanban boards, scrum boards, sprints and time tracking. They will also need 3rd party services like GitHub integrated so they can keep track of their commits and other development activities. They’ll need to share files, manage bugs and issues, communicate, and collaborate. For more advanced users, workflow builders and automation tools can help provide a serious advantage, as they can help make work more efficient, reliable, and repeatable.
Public relations and marketing
The PR and marketing department will almost never require other users’ feature set. This is due to the nature of their business, where they really only need to know the delivery dates so they can plan their marketing campaign for the new product.
To this end, public relations and marketing needs as many reports as possible. That means dashboards and analysis tools with a dash of calendar. If you rely heavily on PR and marketing, you’ll want to make sure the platform you choose offers customizable dashboards and plenty of tools for presenting data in an easily readable form.
Information Technology and Operations
The IT and Operations departments will work with developers to ensure the infrastructure is in place and up to the task. They will need to know if there are any issues causing hiccups in the project. Therefore, IT and operations staff will need features such as dashboards, communication and collaboration tools, reports, and forms. Since these departments may be involved in the testing phase of the project, they will need access to bug and issue tracking so that they can submit tickets.
IT and Operations staff may also want access to the documentation. After all, these two teams will most likely be responsible for publishing the project, so they will need to have all the necessary documentation in order to be able to take on the final stage of the project.
If other employees are connected to the project but don’t manage what’s being created, developed, marketed, or deployed, you should still provide access to some features so they stay in the loop. The features you might include in them are calendars, communication and collaboration tools, basic reports and documentation, and error and issue submission tools.
Remember, what you allow these employees to use will depend on their role in the company, so distribute these features wisely. You definitely don’t want the wrong employee to have access to a board where they can make a mess of the project.
Every project, company, project management tool is different. If you create a list of the features you need by department, you will come up with a definitive list of what you need this platform to be and the choice will be exponentially easier.
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