Project Management is a skill that helps you manage projects systematically and efficiently. It includes – identifying needs, defining objectives, drawing an execution plan, mapping project performance, controlling the project activity and completing the project as per the demands of the various stakeholders. Today, organizations globally has understood that unless there is no proper structure and approach towards managing projects, there won’t be proper progress and development.
To make project management more convenient there are various project management tools that help you initiate, plan, execute, control and close projects successfully. These tools are so handy that companies now-a-days depend on them for efficient completion of the project within proper time and budget in an available resources.
1. They allow you to estimate, plan and track projects effectively:
By using these tools, a manager develops an effective plan which includes tasks to be performed, project schedule, budget, performance tracking methods, etc. It further helps, to demonstrate project progress and development.
2. Assigning and Scheduling Resources become easy:
These tools allow a manager to map resource performance and usage even during the critical phases of project progress. This assists the project manager assign and schedule resource allocation.
Types of Project Management Tools
Traditionally, project management tools / application had general purpose and were not evolved enough to design plans, project estimations, schedules, etc. They were just used for operational or presentational purposes. Now, software has designed tools that make a project manager’s job more flexible and efficient.
Among the various project management tools in the market, Oracle’s Primavera and Microsoft Projects are more widely used and accepted by many organizations.
By using Primavera (currently P6) you get an absolute control over the project. As a tool, it allows you plan, monitor and control project , guide your team and connect with your project stakeholders efficiently. Moreover, it has a great flexibility which enables you to twist and turn it according to the size and complexity of the project. The capacity of Primavera (P6) is dynamic and it is an evolving tool that makes work easier to complete.
1. Enables you to manage risk factors by monitoring and controlling project schedule and preventing from any slippages.
2. Helps you better analyze the efforts which prevents a project to overrun its estimated budget.
3. You can efficiently plan and monitor your multiple activities at the same time.
4. Optimizes your project plan and helps you to utilize allocated resources appropriately as well as help identify areas where resource costs may be reduced by analyzing resource trends and costs.
5. Helps you analyze the project through a bird’s eye view.
6. Primavera (P6) enables you to predict variable cost and time and helps you communicate with other project resources, functional managers, project managers, and planners efficiently
7. Keeps a check on project periodical performance and compare against past performances.
This tool is commonly used in managing larger projects especially in “infrastructure development, Construction projects, MEP projects, aerospace engineering, Oil & Gas, etc.” and gives you a great grip to handle various integrated processes. Better Tracking features, enhanced collaboration and communication mechanism and easier usability are the major advantages of using Primavera (P6).
Microsoft® Project Professional
Microsoft® Project Professional helps you mange wide range of crucial projects easily and systematically. It assists you in attaining deadlines, employing right resource and handling teams efficiently in order to bring about productive results. In short, this tool simplifies your job in managing complex projects.
1. Efficiently distinguishes between the project schedule and the forecast schedule
One can track two types of schedules in MS project; the project schedule and the forecast schedule. The original schedule acts as a deadline schedule and the forecast schedule is a dynamic schedule, where you can continuously calculate and recalculate timeline through your progress information. This helps you to bring the project back on track if it’s losing the grip on the original schedule.
2. Helps calculate task resources
Systematizes your project, which makes it easy to calculate resources (cost, time, manpower, etc.) during the inception period that is required for the completion of the project.
3. Identifies a relationship between a task and its dependencies
Certain tasks are dependent on certain variables. MS project helps us to identify those variables during scheduling and planning the project.
4. Enables your collaboration with your teams and resources
It keeps everyone in the team on the same page and well-connected.
Microsoft Project tool has some advantages like “matured tool being in market for 25+ years with multiple progressive versions, being from Microsoft easy integration with Excel, Word, PowerPoint, Outlook, reliable and sound support is available, desktop versions are available, etc.”
In short, in order to manage projects like a pro you need an immense knowledge of project management tools. They make you work a piece of cake and efficient at a same time.