What is project management software and what is it used for? 

Project management software is a tool that can help project managers and project teams plan, organise and track project progress effectively. It provides a central platform where all project information including tasks, timelines, resources, budget and communications are stored, providing teams with a holistic view of project status. Different project management solutions provide access to different features, however below we have outlined some common features found in project management systems. 

Task Management – Project Managers can create, assign and track project tasks across their multiple projects, while team members can view their assigned tasks and update their progress, ensuring all project team members are always up to date on project status. 

Scheduling – Project management software allows teams to set deadlines and scheduling activities to create more accurate project timelines and make sure all team members know what needs to be done by certain dates. 

Resource Management – Equipment, materials and human resources can be allocated and managed via project management software, ensuring managers allocate resources in the most effective way. 

Budgeting – Budgeting tools allow managers to create budgets, track expenses and monitor financial activity so they can make informed financial decisions. 

Reporting – Many project management solutions offer access to various charts, reporting features and dashboards, providing managers and key stakeholders with clear insight into project status and key metrics so they can make data-driven decisions. 

What are the advantages of using project management software? 

There are several benefits to using project management software in your organisation. Below we outline some of the key advantages. 

Improve Communication and Collaboration – Notifications and status updates provided by project management software help keep everyone informed on project progress and changes and ensures every team member knows what they should be working on. Many project management tools even enable real-time communication, file sharing and commenting, streamlining communication and collaboration among team members. 

Boost Productivity – As project management solutions provide each member of the project team with a clear overview of project tasks and progress, the reliance on meetings and emails to communicate is greatly reduced, ensuring teams can focus on important project work. 

Enhance Decision-Making – The real-time insights into project progress, key performance metrics and potential risks provided by project management software helps managers make better informed decisions, as well as identifying any issues quickly so teams can take corrective action as soon as possible.  

Transparency – Within project management tools, all project data is accessible to project managers and each team member, meaning everyone can see who is responsible for what task. This fosters accountability and transparency within teams. 

Effective Resource Management – Resource management features help ensure optimal use of project resources, including human, financial and material resources. 

Can project management software be used for small projects? 

Project management software can be used for projects of all sizes. With a wide range of project management solutions on the market catering to companies and projects of different sizes, even businesses whose projects are less complex can find a project management solution that aligns with their specific needs. The best option, however, may be to find a scalable project management solution that can evolve in line with growing organisational needs and project complexity. 

How to choose the right project management software  

Below we outline some of the key things you should consider when choosing the right project management software for your organisation. 

Organisational and Project Requirements – Some project management solutions on the market cater to enterprise level organisations while others suit the needs of SMEs, so you first need to identify your specific needs in terms of budget, the size of your team and organisation and the complexity of your project work.  

Solution Features – It's a good idea to outline what you consider must-have features. Most project management tools have standard features surrounding task management, scheduling and timelines, resource management and reporting tools. However, you may seek advanced functionality such as automation capabilities or artificial intelligence (AI) tools. Although all organisations can benefit from these technologies, if your projects are smaller and less complex, they may not be an absolute necessity if you are working with a restrictive budget. 

Scalability – As mentioned previously, scalability is an important consideration. Ideally, you should choose a solution that can scale up or down as your organisation evolves and changes. The solution should be able to easily support and accommodate changes in your team size, project scope and project requirements. 

User Experience – When integrating a new project management solution, you want to minimise change resistance and ensure your team is enthusiastic in order to maximise adoption and get the most out of your solution. This can be difficult if the team finds the system difficult to use. Therefore, it's recommended that you opt for a tool that is intuitive and easy to use for all team members, regardless of technical expertise. 

Security – Ensure both the vendor and the solution meet the recommended security and data privacy standards. It’s also a good idea to choose a solution that offers strong security features like data encryption and access controls. 

At Storm Technology we have the expertise and experience to help you choose the right project management solution for your organisation from a range of solutions including Project Online, Project for Web, Power PPM and D365 for Project Operations. 

To learn more, get in touch with one of our solution specialists today. Alternatively, check out our case study with European Training Foundation to discover how they partnered with Storm to integrate low-code project management solution, Power PPM.