Companies are focused on growth out of necessity. However, sometimes they reach a milestone and look back with dismay to find their workflow hasn’t grown along with them. The needs and demands of a growing business are incredibly complex and challenging, which means that tools made for their specific industry can’t keep up the pace. So when is the right time to look into project management software for your team? If you spot any of the following seven telltale signs, it might be time to determine which software meets your collective needs.
Communication Looks More Like Litter
Piles upon piles of sticky notes, stacks of well-loved notebooks and inboxes overflowing with “Re:re:re:re Monday Project Meeting” subject lines are all examples of ineffective communication on a growth scale. If you need to sift through previous notes each time you need a piece of information, or worse, confuse one set of data for another in the fray, you’re cruising towards a problem. Project management software will help you establish discovery and communication paths to prevent mistakes or wasted researching time.
Your Inbox Feels Like Quicksand
If you sit down in the morning to “just respond to that one email” and suddenly look up to find it’s lunchtime, your email inbox is ruling your work life. Multiply that obstacle by each member in your team and you have a huge waste of time cutting into your resource budget. Project management software streamlines your missives into a single cohesive dashboard and clarifies the questions that usually result in that same “Re:re:re:re Monday Project Meeting” email we’ve already given the side-eye to.
Projects? More Like Piles!
It’s not unusual to work on more than one project at once, or to juggle a few sub-projects, but that doesn’t have to mean losing the entirety of your “desk real estate.” If your projects are turning into looming towers (both mentally and physically) of paperwork, folders and notebooks, you’d be far better off with a digital, tab-based system. Project management software makes it easy to switch back and forth between projects as needed, reducing confusion and frustration.
Any Delegation Requires Aspirin
Even on great days, project management can feel more like herding cats than leading a team, but sometimes even that gets out of hand. If you wince at the thought of following up, or find yourself taking on heavier workloads because it’s “not worth the hassle” of assigning various tasks manually, you definitely need software for project management.
Meetings Devour Your Time
Meetings are necessary and expected through the course of a project, but if your hour-long 3:00 pm brainstorms constantly end up stretching to 4:30 with little progress, it’s time to call in the digital calvary. Mini-meetings between key players can often get more done in shorter amounts of time, ensuring that your team is back at their desks when they need to be. Software dashboards make it easy to coordinate schedules, monitor progress and communicate one-on-one for more efficient communication.
Your Team’s Motivation Seems to Evaporate
From an employee standpoint, nothing saps energy more consistently than having to sit through (or in) endless meetings that don’t involve their responsibilities, or inclusion in a perpetual “Reply All” email chain that discusses project problems that were fixed long ago. Inefficiency spreads like a virus in a busy office, and if you’re struggling to complete your tasks in a timely manner with minimal waste, you can be sure your team is experiencing the same thing. Introducing project management software sends a clear message: we have a plan, we’re all going to follow it, and here’s how we’re going to do it.
You Aren’t Sure Where You Stand
This may be the biggest red flag of all. If you need to frantically “check into a few things” in order to give a clear answer on project progress, you don’t really know where your team is, in terms of the project. Consistently using a dashboard keeps you on-target as a manager, and keyed into important project developments as they happen. This reduces stumbling in front of clients or C-suite executives, and ultimately makes you a better professional with better results to offer.
About Umesh Lalwani
Previously founded and managed Assigncorp, an IT company for 15 years. The company grew to USD 13 Million a year. Umesh has a passion for understanding individual tendencies and team dynamics towards collaboration and getting things done.To learn more visit http://www.grapple.co/