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Good project management is key to the success of any small to medium sized enterprise (SMEs). There are a number of free software programmes you can use as a small business owner to assist in making project management more efficient. Here, kinex looks at five project management tools you can use to help your business thrive in 2016.
Launched in 2011, Trello is a web-based project management application and its basic services are free of charge. It uses ‘boards’ to represent projects; these boards have ‘cards’ which represent the individual tasks. In other words, Trello creates a visual representation of a project so you can see how it progresses from initiation to completion with ease. It only provides 10MB of storage but if you’re a micro-SME, it can be a great project management tool for your company.
If you’re looking for a free project management tool to help you scale up your business, think about utilising Freedcamp. It has a range of free apps including shared task lists, forum boards, file storage, deadline setting features and more which can help you run a project efficiently. There are also some great bolt-ons including an advanced workflow issue management feature, which you can invest in as your company grows to support its expanding needs.
Open source management tool Ganttproject has a reputation for being complex. However, it is free and has all the project management tools you could ever need including spreadsheets, a resource load chart, holiday management tools, and baseline saving and comparing features, so it’s well worth learning to use. Ganttproject is perfect for SMEs handling time consuming projects; it organises tasks in a hierarchical structure so you can prioritise what’s important.
Free for businesses with 12 employees or less, Bitrix24 is a “complete suite of social collaboration, communication and management tools.” It combines a social intranet system with tools such as messaging, activity planning and contact tracking, allowing your team to quickly manage important information in a central programme. Bitrix24 also allows your employees to communicate across multiple locations and utilise free cloud storage for projects, so this is a great tool for you if your employees work remotely.
Describing itself as ‘online time tracking software,’ Harvest is a project management tool for web and mobile. With features like ‘fast invoicing’ and ‘expense tracking,’ it can save you time and money. Its powerful reporting features can also help keep your projects on time and on budget, as well as estimating how future projects may play out. The service is free for small businesses with up to four clients or two project per month.
SMES need a robust project management in place to succeed.A recent study from SAP, a software solutions provider, indicates that SMEs who carry out key tasks via digital technologies show faster growth. By utilising one of these free project management tools you can streamline a time consuming, costly process to maximise profitability at your small business in 2016.
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