In every business, there’s always room for improvement. Successful organizations interested in taking the next step usually begin by looking in the obvious places: what costs can be lowered, which products and services can be enhanced and how can the customer base can be expanded? Those are important questions, to be sure, but they’re not the only ones a company should ask. Collaborative work management is another area that offers opportunities for improvement, even if a company is doing it well today.
Today’s best online collaboration tools, like Clarizen, can help any organization increase efficiency and improve project outcomes. Here’s a look at some of the key ways a collaborative project management solution can keep your company moving forward.
Moving to the Cloud
Organizations that rely on shared network drives (or even worse, employees’ individual computers) to store project information are asking for trouble. Setting aside the possibility that critical data could be lost in the event of a device or network failure, these outdated approaches create barriers to the flow of information, especially for team members who use mobile devices to do their work. Cloud-based project management and collaboration tools eliminate these obstacles, ensuring that all team members can access project plans, work products and important files at any time, on any device.
In the past, version control has been a thorn in the side of every project manager who had to keep track of multiple copies of project plans, timelines, meeting notes and other documents as they were edited and revised. Cloud-based work collaboration allows project teams to maintain a single version of each document or file, rather than forcing team members to make updates separately and then attempt to merge their changes.
Sharing Project Information in Real Time
Even when project managers are conscientious about copying team members on every relevant message, email is a less than ideal method for distributing critical information to team members. An email message can easily be lost in an overfilled inbox, leaving the recipient in the dark about important changes to timelines or deliverables for hours or even days. With Clarizen, project updates are always available in real time, so team members always know where they should look to find the latest details on their project.
Linking Conversations and Tasks
If you’re looking for ways to improve project management at your organization, consider the many different channels that are typically used for project communications. Team members might share notes from a call in a Word document, discuss recent changes via an instant messaging conversation and send status updates through email, all in the course of a single day. Clarizen allows project teams to link social collaboration discussions directly to the objects being discussed, such as action items, expense reports or approval requests. These conversations allow everyone on the team to focus on the task at hand without jumping from screen to screen in search of the information they need. Moreover, an ‘audit trail’ of the discussions and ideas around a project are captured. New team members can review this, get up to speed quickly and become productive at an accelerated pace.
Whether you’re business is already successful or not quite there yet, Clarizen’s suite of project management tools can help project managers, IT teams, professional services, and marketing teams manage their work, and employees, more effectively.