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With the growing use of technology in all facets of modern life, it’s no surprise that a huge range of project management tools have been developed which assist PMs in just about every aspect of their day-to-day work. The importance of project management tools is apparent for any project manager seeking to ensure project success. Here are just some of the benefits that they can bring to your work.

Estimating with accuracy

Knowing how long a project is going to take and setting relevant milestones and deadlines is a key task for any project manager. With online project management software it’s possible to input a huge raft of data concerning work packets, due dates and capacity and it will calculate estimated completion dates and the critical path for your project.

Resource optimization

Along with being able to effectively estimate the important dates along your project’s path, you can also judge the availability and usage of your resources with high degrees of accuracy. This allows you to assign tasks in a manner that makes full use of your team’s capabilities while organizing work packets to seamlessly integrate with each other.

Capacity planning

The importance of project management tools really becomes obvious when measuring and organizing your team’s capacity. With good cloud-based project management software, you can visualize an entire work schedule for a 50+ team over the space of two years, knowing what you’ll need and when, at various key points during your project’s progress.

Budget tracking

Depending on the size of your organization, you may or may not have an accounting department assisting you on your project. Either way however, it’s always a good idea to be keeping a close eye on whether the project is staying within the set budget constraints, which project management tools can do with minimal effort on your part.

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Progress management

With easily updateable and real-time Gantt charts, measuring progress and being hyper-aware of how your project is, nowadays, an automatic expectation. It doesn’t even come into the realm of micro-management anymore, just set up a quick-link dashboard and it becomes simple to monitor all facets of team progress without any need to look over anyone’s shoulder.

Risk assessment and monitoring

Another advantage of having so much data and information which can be compiled and dissected instantly by your software is that potential risks can be calculated with a high degree of precision, while also being matched with the project’s risk mitigation and crisis plans so your entire risk assessment and monitoring procedures are together in one place.

Automated and effective reporting

The days of project managers wasting their precious time on repetitive tasks and acting more like a central post office for project communications than an actual PM are thankfully becoming a thing of the past. Pre-built reports and dashboards can automatically keep team members and stakeholders informed of real-time progress and responsibilities, giving project managers more time to add the value of their skills to project activities.

There are of course varying levels of project management tools, with one of the largest debates being around free vs. fee-paying tools. As one can imagine, fee-paying tools have a wider range of features and functionality while the main advantage of free tools is, well, that they’re free. You can decide for yourself what kind of project management tool will suit your needs best by taking a trial of Clarizen’s software here.