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Project management software is a simple tool designed to manage a project planning and progress, its resource allocation and change management. It is becoming an increasingly popular tool as more and more project managers are investing their monetary resources in this. With increasing demands and use, the project has undergone a huge change with much new functionality reducing time and effort to a huge extent. This has also raised some concerns amongst the managers regarding which software to choose and what to keep in considerations while deciding.

With many new features incorporated in the project management tool, the original use of the software still remains to manage the project and track the components, stakeholders, and resources.

  1. To map the project tasks and visually describe the task interactions
  2. Assignment and tracking of task management and deadlines
  3. Acts as a central document repository for project workers to access
  4. Scheduled meetings, activity dates, and necessary contacts to be shared with all project managers and stakeholders
  5. The software includes bug and error reporting and rectification, as well as maintains all records viewable to all the people authenticated to use.

With all these functions, it becomes necessary to have the appropriate software picked for you.

Here are some of the things to keep in mind before you go for the software

Price
Let’s start with the one that most probably the most important one. Price factor might be a matter of considerations for a larger firm, while on the other hand, can be a make or break factor for a smaller organization. There are a lot of differently priced software available in the market, and going for the right one can be a boon on your pockets. Where some allow unlimited collaborators for a monthly, some have a different price for a different group of users. Before choosing one, try to estimate if it would be reducing the costs anywhere in the business, relating to human labour, increasing efficiency or by replacing any other software

Is it collaborative?
Being one of the most basic features of project management software, this tool should be collaborative and lucid enough so that the different stakeholders have no difficulty in contributing to it, either remotely or on site.

Ease of use
Single user software is easily customisable and hence is easy to use. But when it comes to multi-user managing software, veterans understand the need for the user-friendly interface so that the different users can effectively contribute to the project.  Also, most businesses don’t have the luxury of enough time that can be invested in learning the use of one software, and hence it becomes necessary for you to analyze the way you collaborate and contribute to the project, and accordingly use software that plays to your strengths.

Security
Functionality and all else cheesy stuff are fine, but the risk with the security can send the projects back in bags. You have to pay equal attention to security features that are being offered with the software. Some strict measures like 128-bit encryption for online work, or using a separate platform for keeping your work and data safe has to be taken to avoid a cyber mishap. Also in case of any data leak, there is customer support present, in many software, to help you prevent further leaks.

Real-time reporting
Software that can give an updated and real-time reporting of projects updates, any recent data entry, a view of the day’s or week’s work can be of huge help in keeping you updated with all the necessary project work, as well as can serve to give you a presentable update to your head. Also, features like graphs and charts can make your work further easy.

Customizable and Scalability
Maybe this can be considered an extra perk, but having some easily customizable features always comes in handy. Managing software which can be programmed to give you automatic printed day’s work, or a weekly graph of progress, can help you to reduce your time spent in these extra manoeuvres.

Scalability of managing software also is a point to note especially when you have planned to work with it on a long-term basis on various projects. Managing software that grows with the company can go a long way in the market; also, will be gradually easy to use and more customizable over time.

Although there are pretty many things to keep in mind, choosing a managing software shouldn’t be a daunting task. Keeping the above tips in mind, it will be easy to find software suitable for your business needs and easy to work in long-term, and it will be a huge aid in managing your project from inception to implementation to track. Also, there are many software which provide the customer, technical support and hence makes your bug hunting process even easier.

Author bio:
Sanjay Darji works as a software analyst at SoftwareSuggest. His interests include project management, crm software, accounting software,applicant tracking system, photography, and food. In his spare time, he likes to spend time with his son and catch up on the latest technologies. You can follow him on twitter at @sanjaydarji01.

Informa holds a number of Project Management Courses throughout the year to help you advance your career. Click here to view these courses.

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