Back in the day, when “the cloud” was a mass of condensed moisture that might look like a cow and someone talking about “an app” meant catching 40 winks, project managers who wanted to tap the power of technology were chained to cumbersome mainframes and clunky software.
Today’s wide variety of project management software lets you handle scheduling, alert team members and supervisors to looming risks, track and level workload or optimize your use of resources. Software can be limited to a single user, open to any number of members or woven into bug tracking or source control, and be used on mobile devices, a desktop or accessed anywhere an Internet connection is available.
Developers have also responded to these expanding project management toolset with project management apps for Google Android or Apple iPhone users, and here’s a look at a quartet for each.
First, Google Android Devices.
Do by Salesforce
Do by Salesforce is a mobile, cloud-based application for task management that lets users assign tasks and share notes. It allows activity feeds to track progress and provides notifications in real time. It allows users to centralize tracking for all team members. The app works from a phone, tablet or computer.
You can create tasks in Gmail, attach Google Docs to tasks and login through any Google account. The app is free and based on Manymoon and Salesforce.com.
Gantter Project will let you use and manage Gantt charts and also import files from Microsoft Project even if some members are using the technology on a desktop. It requires no software to be installed and lets you store and share schedules from your cloud.
It also has templates for project scheduling and is integrated with Google Drive. The app is currently free and is by Gantter.
Pivotal Tracker an award winning application for Agile project management that has a single view for everyone and allows members to collaborate and react to feedback as well as see changes in real time. You can share Google Docs and login with Google Apps or any Google Account. It offers automatic predictions for milestone completion dates.
It is also available on iPhone, iPad and IPod Touch. It is free for individuals, non-profits, public projects and academic institutions with paid plans starting at $7 a month. It was developed by Pivotal Labs.
Podio lets you invite users into the provisioning process and promises flexible project managing with the addition of apps to fit your project or approach. There are public/private workspaces and you can invite contacts from Google, Outlook, Facebook and Linkedin to the workspace. You can add updates and tasks to Google Docs and it works with all major file-sharing services.
You can see Podio milestones and deadlines on Google Calendar and convert any email into a task and send it to the right project. It is free for up to five users with each additional user $9 per month and developed by Podio.
For Apple Devices:
Project Planner HD
Project Planner HD is the iPad version of Project Planner for tracking multiple tasks and projects and lets you see tasks as a list or Gantt chart broken into days, weeks or months as well as edit tasks and view more than one project. It’s supported by the open source Gantt Project.
You can export projects, charts and data in a number of formats such as .gan, .ppf, .pdf and .png. The price is $5.99 from Pertium.net.
SG Project works on the iPad and is for managers who usually work on one product at a time. It’s similar to SG Project Pro which handles larger projects or more than one at a time and has additional tools and features.
SG Project uses three built-in work schedules and can give each task a duration, percentage completed, people involved and start date. Using iPad movements you can rearrange rows of projects and tasks and zoom and scroll over views of tables and Gantt schedules. You can report on and manage basic costs. It costs $9.99 and is from FourthFrame Technologies.
Pivotal Tracker for iOS
Pivotal Tracker for iOS lets you use an iOS interface to access projects on Pivotal Tracker, an agile project management tool, and requires a Pivotal Tracker account. You can assign priorities and create stories for your team, post comments or add tasks. There is the ability to add attachments to Tracker stories from your photo library.
It supports nearly all project management tasks in Pivotal Tracker and lets you view and search a project’s stories offline. The app is free from Pivotal Labs.
XPlan can create and manage projects while tracking costs and tasks, but touts itself as simple to learn and accessible for those who may not be professional project managers – but it is capable of handling professional level projects also. It is easier for team members to learn than more complicated tools and offers a less complex way to look at a full-featured plan and initial requirements.
You can assign specific tasks, requirements and resources and generate a complete Gantt schedule. The app is $9.99 by adnX SARL.