Effective project management determines success of any business. In order to be effective, project managers use default and custom tools to keep their business projects on the right track. A default project manager tool offers a range of standard features, such as task lists, schedules, organizers, data sharing, automatic alerts, graphs, reports, and more. If there is a need for special features and even some customization, a custom tool for project management can be used. CentriQS offers you both solutions. When you use it you get a single desktop software package to orchestrate all aspects of time-limited and discrete projects in your business.
Project Work Breakdown by Tasks and Sub-Tasks
Your project brings an amount of work that must be done. This work is rather large and only manageable from a strategic view. At tactics level, you can hardly understand what pieces of the work to do, when and by whom. That's why your project work needs to be represented as a breakdown structure with multiple levels and sub-levels. This breakdown makes it possible for you to plan and manage your project at the lowest level of detail.
In your breakdown structure, tasks and sub-tasks (called "components") will represent to the total amount of work to be done. All work components are sequenced and managed under a set of dependency rules. Dependencies allow your team to understand how the completion/start time of one task impacts the completion/start time of other dependent task(s). Parent tasks and their child items (or sub-tasks) break down the project into levels to show the team larger and smaller activities.
As an example, CentriQS's project manager tool allows you to set predecessor-successor relationships between dependent tasks as well as split larger tasks into tiny, low-level sub-tasks. The software builds a breakdown structure that helps you create a detailed view of your entire work.
Priority by Urgency and Importance
Work components in your breakdown structure are organized and managed by dependencies, which define predecessor-successor relationships. However, these relationships tell nothing about tasks or sub-tasks that are either not dependent on each other, or are scheduled for execution in parallel. In both cases your team will not know for certain which task or sub-task should come up first.
This challenge is handled by prioritization. By assigning priority per task or sub-task in CentriQS software you indicate which items are urgent and important. Urgency and importance are two prioritization criteria that turn your project breakdown into a highly manageable and observable plan of work. Your team members know when they need to do what task.
Task Due Date and Resource Assignment
The target completion date of your project consists of multiple due dates of tasks and sub-tasks. A task's due date tells an assigned resource till what scheduled time the task is due to be completed. In case the task is not competed as scheduled it becomes overdue and the team member needs to take an appropriate action to remove the delay.
CentriQS allows you to set due dates for project tasks and sub-tasks. Each team member gets assigned to each task/sub-task. As a project manager, you can keep track of work progress and view troubles immediately. For example, if a task is overdue both you and the assigned employee get an automatic notification by email. The project manager tool also highlights the overdue item in the task list. The Complete column shows you % complete per task/sub-task.
Activity Duration and Project Timeline
Along with due dates, you need to set a certain time frame (start and finish dates) for each activity. Time frames define activity duration and create a timeline for your project. All this information serves as a foundation for effective scheduling. With help of a project manager tool you can set accurate time frames for tasks and develop a schedule for your project.
For example, in CentriQS you go to the Scheduler to easily schedule tasks and their durations by drag'n'drop functionality. The Scheduler lets you split a task into multiple schedule items with different time frames. This feature removes clutter in your project schedule, making it more comprehensive and accurate. Your team members can view their assigned scheduled items on their individual calendars.
Files and Documents in Project Database
No project can be run and managed without right documentation in place. Estimates, time sheets, plans, contracts, meeting agendas and other documents in .xlsx, .pdf, .ppt, .docx and other file formats should be available for use by management and team members. CentriQS, a featured project manager tool, lets you upload necessary files in your project database as well as link project data to local and remote files.
The software has the Files view where you can keep all documents of your project. Any update made to an uploaded file is logged by the software, and then an immediate automatic alert pops up. You can set size limit for file uploads (e.g. only a 20mb file or less can be uploaded to your database).
Reporting in Project Manager Tool
As a project manager you are ultimately responsible for the performance and the final result of your project. Reporting tools in CentriQS allow you to carry out your responsibility. You can use analytics views, dashboards and graphs to track project performance and create printed reports. As an example, you can create a burndown chart to report on the amount of time remaining till project completion. For this chart you can create a pivot table to summarize time performance in terms of Estimate, Actual, Remain and Deviation.