Project Management Tools and Techniques to Streamline Your WorkflowLast Updated: May 14, 2020
It’s no secret that the project management tools and techniques your team uses can make a significant difference in how efficiently you work. Particularly when workloads are heavy or distractions abound, it’s critical to optimize workflows in order to minimize stress, hit key milestones, and ultimately accomplish more in less time. It’s equally as important for work to be fun and for your teams to feel supported and inspired to achieve more.
With all of this in mind, we have some suggestions for how your teams can streamline their work. And we’ll also highlight a few tools that are especially effective at organizing and accelerating projects and tasks.
Techniques to Streamline Project Management and Workflow
Here are several efficient techniques you can adopt—provided you have a cloud-based project management platform that’s accessible to your whole team. (If you’re not already working in a collaborative workspace online, no problem. Look for project management software suggestions further down.)
To save time on task management:
- Design templates that can be copied instead of recreating tasks over and over.
- Schedule recurring tasks to automate to-dos for each day, week, month, or year.
- Use calendars to monitor project timelines and workloads so you can track progress at a glance—and make changes proactively if needed.
To streamline team communication:
- Add followers and subscribers to tasks to eliminate the need to send and sort through email updates.
- Personalize communication settings to ensure you’re notified of important issues first and non-essential updates last—if at all.
- Mute all notifications when you need to focus without interruption.
- Utilize built-in chat functions for conversations relating to specific projects and tasks, making all pertinent information easier to track.
To organize project activity:
- Attach relevant files directly to tasks to prevent team members from having to search for resources.
- Create a central location for all important documents, and make it easily searchable and accessible to project collaborators.
- Set up an activity dashboard to get a snapshot of each day and to check the status of you and your team’s tasks, including what’s completed or upcoming.
Though it’s not impossible to mix-and-match remote work tools to facilitate these techniques, your team will be infinitely more productive if they can accomplish everything from a single workspace.
Which Project Management Platform Should You Choose?
Let’s weigh the pros and cons of various project management tools so you can see more clearly which might be right for your team.
|Pros: Asana is a well-known project management platform that offers multiple features and app integrations. Do you like using Gantt charts to monitor project timelines? You’ve got it. Do you need to keep track of product launches or client feedback? That’s all here. Do you still love using Microsoft Outlook? You won’t have to give it up.|
Having been around for a while already, the developers at Asana have had time to work out unruly kinks to create a smooth platform. Plus, they offer a free version if you’re a one-person show.
|Cons: Asana focuses solely on projects, tasks, and workflows, which may not cover everything your team needs. The flexibility of task assignments is surprisingly limited. And, as it is a fairly complicated program, many Asana users find it confusing to learn and to train other team members.|
|Pros: Trello is simpler to learn and to navigate than Asana. Relying primarily on Kanban boards, rather than on multiple complex features, Trello’s progress tracking feature is intuitive and visually appealing. There’s a free version of Trello, as well, if your team is small and needs only a few tools.|
|Cons: If your business is large or needs multiple tools, Trello is far from ideal as a total project management platform. Email integration, labels, and keyboard shortcuts are limited, and tasks can be assigned to only one board or project. Descriptions must be kept simple, and bar charts are non-existent.|
|Pros: Flow lets you manage all of your tasks from one space—no matter how demanding the workload for any given project may be. Like Asana, it offers a variety of features and integrations. Like Trello, it’s simple and easy to learn in minutes. (So, you get the best of both worlds.)|
Here’s a more detailed look at how Flow helps teams achieve more:
In Home, you can see all of your tasks at a glance as well as a news feed of updates for the tasks and projects you follow.
In Tasks, you can see all of your work plus the workloads of the teams and teammates you’ve added to your sidebar. It’s a cinch to keep track of tasks that are overdue, unassigned, or missing a deadline.
In Projects, you can track larger initiatives and see collections of tasks in a Kanban board or list view.
In Calendars, you can see your work and others’ on a timeline, track multiple projects across teams, and assess how work is spread out with the workload view.
In Chat, you can set up convenient channels for group discussions and communicate with teammates in traditional direct messages. (feature available in June 2020)
It’s one of the newer productivity tools and project management platforms on the market. In 10 years, Flow has already helped more than 300,000 teams in over 140 countries. It brings the ultimate project management tools and techniques together in one place to enable a team’s full potential.
|Cons: Flow doesn’t offer a free version, which could be limiting for a company of one. That said, the cost for each plan is lower than most, and the packaged deals actually do give you a free trial period.|
Better Project Management Tools and Techniques Empower Your Team
Having better project management tools and techniques is one of the best ways to get the most out of your teams—and to help them enjoy the work. When your team members have ready opportunities to streamline workflow, collaborative achievement excels.
This is especially true of comprehensive remote workspaces that are feature-rich and intuitive. With more and more teams distributed or fully remote, keeping everyone engaged and working together is an achievement all on its own.
Flow combines simplicity, power, and personalization in one beautifully designed space that you can learn how to use in minutes. Whether your team members are remote or distributed, this all-in-one platform helps everyone work together. To see for yourself, start your free trial today!