I can remember the days when the only project management tool that I knew existed was Microsoft Project. There might have been others, but this was the only one that I ever came across. When I was studying for my masters at Syracuse University, I took a project management class and it revolved around the use of Microsoft Project for our class project. Even at job interviews, I was asked about my experience with Project. However, the landscape where Microsoft Project is the dominant application in the project management space has dramatically changed in the past few years. I have been using Trello to manage my projects and tasks at work for over a year. Maybe you also use Trello or have tried it and felt it wasn't right for you. Fortunately for all of us, there is a variety of similar tools we can choose from these days.
I went with Trello because, it was the right fit for me and I was working within a highly dynamic organization where constant change is the daily norm. Trello enabled me to quickly document and build out the pieces of a project or a task. Then it also allowed me to rapidly make changes as needed. The learning curve was incredibly short to be able to create an account and start using it. The initial board that you are presented with after creating an account is barren of any details, but that allowed me to create a board that best represented the type of projects I was involved with for work. This also allows for others to create boards to manage a variety of projects from planning a wedding to a writing project. The ability to share my project board and collaborate with others is one of the key features of Trello. I have talked to others who have felt that Trello doesn't meet their needs as some of the other tools that are available such as WorkBoard, Asana, daPulse, BaseCamp, and many others. That's the beauty of it all; you now have an option in choosing from a variety of tools to use the one that best works for you.
Which one is the best for you?
- What is the learning curve to start using it? More importantly, if you belong to a team, can your team also learn to comfortably use it?
- Does it provide the level of collaboration that is needed for your team to be productive?
- Is there a mobile app available?
- How much does it cost? Is there a free version?
- Can your project status be shown to others in presentable manner?
- Can you backup your projects and tasks?
- Can you organize your tasks in a manageable fashion?
Ultimately, the best way to find out if a particular project management platform is the right one for you is by trying it. You want to make sure that the platform as a whole suits your needs. You don't want to invest a lot of time constructing your project only to find out later that the platform can no longer be effectively used.