Project Management Software & 6 Tips To Select The Best One

Before you start another "top 5 project management software" search, let's cut through the noise and focus on what truly matters.

Project lifecycle management, from planning to completion, requires procedures and solutions that enable timely and cost-effective work delivery. Stay here to learn more about project management software, its features, and how to choose the best one for your organisation.

Let’s take a product tour with project management consultants and dive into the details below.

project management software Havi Technology Pty Ltd

Do you need project management software?

Firstly, these are a few explanations for why other businesses look for project management solutions.

Only 2.5% of businesses were able to effectively complete all of their projects, and only 64% of projects achieved their expected objectives. Particularly, let’s take a recent actual case of Biologics Consulting (BC) - a pharmaceutical consulting firm. Being a consultancy, BC was supposed to have a comprehensive understanding of the whole project lifecycle. This includes everything from the first meeting with a possible client to the project's final close-out. Before upgrading to project management software, they couldn’t see all of their projects from start to finish, instead, monitoring opportunities and projects separately.

project management Havi Technology Pty Ltd

All things considered, these are some of the most typical difficulties that numerous businesses face:

  • Appropriate resource allocation and management 
  • Insufficient team adoption
  • Insufficient accountability
  • Broken processes, too complicated procedures and tools
  • Lack of processes to support operations
  • Insufficient clarity in communication
  • Organisational culture change
  • Inconsistency between project goals and objectives with teams.

Moreover, the majority of businesses observe an average project failure rate of 70%. Just 28% of businesses make use of project performance techniques to enhance workflow, deliver output, and effectively manage projects. 

In general, there are a few significant signs that indicate you should find a better project management software. The best software will maximise your productivity in several ways, particularly if you are:

  • Having trouble improving teamwork
  • Struggling to assign tasks to the right person
  • Facing difficulties in making plans and budgeting
  • Unable to consistently track progress and exchange work with relevant stakeholders
  • Not seeing opportunities to increase competitiveness.

Understand how the software helps boost your productivity

project management software Havi Technology Pty Ltd

1. Centralise & consolidate data

Project management software is a central hub that helps you streamline information flow and get rid of data silos. In particular, it unifies important project data onto a single and safe platform. According to recent research, 65% of companies that use project management software report having better data visibility, which promotes better teamwork and decision-making.

Moreover, consolidated data enhances accountability and transparency. By keeping track of developments, spotting obstacles, and easily exchanging information, your team members can avoid confusion and delays. Project management software helps your business run more successfully, efficiently, and clearly by centralising and combining data.

The best features enable you to:

  • Oversee the entire undertaking or collaboration from a centralised location
  • Obtain insight into the entire project lifecycle, from start to finish
  • Manage projects proactively and keep an eye on performance wherever the project takes you.

2. Drive project profitability

Firstly, project management software empowers precise planning and expense control. Maintaining up-to-date records of resource distribution, expenditures, and project schedules guarantees that you stay within your budget and spot possible overruns early. Nonprofit HR, a consulting firm, realised that their project managers need project software to schedule and know when cost overruns. This eventually enabled their stakeholders to make adjustments to maintain projects' profitability, stable financial health, and happy clients.

Moreover, the software enables effective resource allocation. Tasks are delegated to your team members based on availability and skill sets, avoiding underuse and maximising resource use. Project management software functions as a compass that drives your project profitability through great cost control, resource allocation, and financial visibility.

The best features enable you to:

  • Quickly review and approve invoices
  • Use dashboards to see project financials quickly
  • Make use of project history to develop new ventures that will provide higher profits.

3. Manage project risk

One feature that helps project management software achieve its highest potential is the capacity to control project risk. Its effective features enable your business to forecast and minimise future issues. First off, the software centralises important information such as deadlines, budgets, and resource allocation, showing a clear picture of possible bottlenecks. Project Management Institute found that project management software reduces project budget overruns by 30% for businesses. This strongly proves the value of centralised data analysis.

Furthermore, risk management capability helps facilitate proactive mitigation. You can assign mitigation methods, evaluate potential risks, and monitor the success of strategies. Project management software enables businesses to successfully navigate even the roughest seas and complete projects with real-time data, visibility, and integrated tools. With real-time data, visibility, and integrated features, project management software enables your business to successfully navigate even the roughest hours and complete projects.

The best features enable you to:

  • Prevent cost and schedule overruns by monitoring delivery progress
  • Utilise notifications to notify project managers of possible risks and make adjustments
  • Control contracts and compensation to complete projects successfully.

4. Enhance team communication

Project management software serves as a central point of contact that enhances simple teamwork and improves output. Initially, separate discussions and dispersed emails are replaced with centralised communication channels. Your teams stay informed through the use of a single, easily accessible platform for task discussions, content sharing, and real-time updates. The case of Schneider Geomatics - an engineering firm, can show us the greater result of using project management software. Their ability to communicate as a team improved. From offline storage and misplaced emails to a single source of truth for all essential data, they saw a huge improvement in their team communication.

project management tools Havi Technology Pty Ltd

Collaboration tools within the software like integrated chat, video conferencing, and linked calendars also encourage proactive communication. In real time, your team members can discuss solutions, resolve obstacles, and simply clarify problems. By encouraging team collaboration, project management software produces an effective work harmony that propels your organisation towards.

The best features enable you to:

  • Keep everyone focused and inform team members of any new project tasks
  • Easily keep track of scheduled versus actual hours to maintain collaboration among teams and projects
  • Include planned hours in timesheets for increased accuracy and project intelligence.

5. Manage resources

You can maximise your team's potential and ensure effective resource allocation with project management software. Accordingly, it offers a high-level perspective of the abilities and schedule of your team. As a result, task assignments take on a strategic role that prevents underutilisation and matches strengths with your project needs. 55% of respondents in a study claimed that effective resource management is one of the key benefits when using the software. 

Secondly, the software's resource management features enable dynamic modifications. With real-time updates and team workloads, these modifications guarantee the right individuals are available for the right tasks at the right time. Project management software makes your resource planning more efficient by assigning strategic tasks and making dynamic modifications.

The best features enable you to:

  • Build scenarios and use generic resources to create profitable plans
  • Optimise assignments and utilise employee management
  • Provide insights into future capacity needs.

6. Drive project profitability

Firstly, project management software empowers accurate budgeting and cost control. Real-time tracking of resource allocation, expenses, and project timelines ensures you stay within budget and identify potential overruns early. Consulting firm, Nonprofit HR, has realised the need for project management software to inform project managers of cost and schedule overruns. This later allows their stakeholders to make adjustments to keep projects profitable, stable financial health, and clients satisfied.

Furthermore, the software fosters efficient resource management. Team members are assigned tasks based on their skills and availability, preventing underutilisation and optimising resource allocation. By driving cost control, efficient resource allocation, and improved financial visibility, project management software acts as your compass, navigating projects towards the shores of profitability.

The best features enable you to:

  • Create scenarios and employ general resources to develop successful plans
  • Maximise tasks and make use of personnel administration
  • Get information about upcoming capacity requirements.

7. Give real-time insights

Project management software provides a unified dashboard that offers an overview of your project's health. Real-time updates on budget specifics, resource allocation, and progress tracking offer your stakeholders a comprehensive picture of the situation. Harrison Grierson - a New Zealand-based design consultancy business, claimed that its previous resource planning application was no longer able to give all the functions it needed. They have been able to observe improvements in their cash flow and utilisation since implementing the new project management software. They now have a better idea of what the upcoming projects look like and can draw lessons from earlier efforts.

Project management software provides real-time analytics, more than just a general overview. Its robust reporting features convert data into actionable insights which is important for pointing out areas of improvement and potential risks. Excluding uncertainties, the software assists you in making informed decisions, quickly adjusting to changes, and optimising project success.

The best features enable you to:

  • Give customers total visibility into your company from one view.
  • Provide measurements and reports on time.
  • Track business performance and make use of business intelligence.

project management software Havi Technology Pty Ltd

6 Great tips for selecting the right software

#1 Identify your constraints

Your team should be able to solve specific difficulties with the project management software. The biggest challenges that most businesses confront include inconsistent approaches and resource management, as well as an excessive number of projects. You may see a high number of overbudget or missing deadline projects on your end.

It's critical to gather your team and discuss the obstacles that have prevented them from succeeding. Asking each person to name one issue they've encountered while working on a project is a good start. After that, you ought to note these claims down to compile a short list of possible project management solutions.

#2 Calculate your budget

Project management software comes with different price tiers. There are several pricing plans, from free services to premium options that go into the hundreds of dollars each month. You might also want to take personnel training costs and platform adoption into account when calculating your financial investment. The following variables may impact the cost of project management software:

  • User count: While some project management providers charge a monthly fee per user, others have different user counts for each subscription tier
  • Features: Some software is less expensive initially, but you might encounter extra charges for integrations or advanced features
  • Frequency of billing: If you pay for a year's worth of services in advance rather than monthly, project management companies could provide you discounts and other rewards
  • Your requirements: Knowing your requirements before requesting price quotes from vendors is essential because numerous elements might affect the final cost of the software.

#3 List out must-have requirements

Software varies in terms of features and functionalities. While some integrate with third-party solutions, others offer built-in time-tracking capabilities. Not every system has email integrations or Gantt charts. Make a list of all the features you would like and rank them from low to high. In this manner, you can eliminate any options that lack your essential equipment.

Here are some key features that you may want to consider:

  • Project lifecycle command centre
  • Resource management & time tracking
  • Task assignment & management
  • Risk management
  • Scheduling and project timelines
  • Communication and status updates
  • File sharing and document management
  • Financial management
  • Reporting and analytics
  • Visual workflow features
  • Automation capabilities
  • Third-party app integrations
  • Mobile apps
  • Help and support.

#4 Create top-list options

Once you're clear on what you need, you may make a list of potential solutions for your particular case. This stage is about researching, identifying, and selecting a range of project management software solutions.

  • Research into available solutions: Start by carrying out in-depth research to determine the software solutions available in the market. Numerous methods, including blogs, ratings, reviews, suggestions, and industry-specific resources, are extremely useful to do this
  • Compare features: By comparing each software's feature set to your list of "must-have" features, you can narrow down your options by comparing the functions and features of each one
  • Consider how it helps with project constraints: Consider the extent to which each software addresses the constraints of your specific project management requirements. Use a scoring system to compare and objectively assess each platform.

#5 Demo each software with a professional team

The next important step is to test the project management software you have selected in your shortlist. To determine how effectively each solution satisfies the needs of your organisation, this step refers to a practical examination with your project management team:

  • Gather important stakeholders: Gather the most significant parties (who must be involved in the testing stage) in one place. These can be a professional consulting team and your top-down, cross-functional project teams
  • Rate each software: Once you've done some practical testing and gathered feedback, rate each software based on how well it satisfies your requirements and includes the ‘’must-have’’ features. You can incorporate elements like user satisfaction, usability, and alignment with the project requirements of your company into your scoring system.

#6 Calculate and justify the cost

In addition to choosing the right features, you need to make sure they fit within your budget.

You can set the budget limit by taking the initial investment and recurring costs into account:

  • Cost breakdown: Divide your budget into components such as the initial acquisition, ongoing expenses, implementation, maintenance, support, and integration
  • Model evaluation: Examine pricing models' scalability and select one that best suits your needs in terms of both requirements and budget
  • Assess ROI: Determine the software's potential ROI by figuring out how it can increase productivity, foster collaboration, and save time
  • Allocate budget contingency: Provide a budgetary contingency for unexpected costs that may arise during execution.

Next, it's critical to evaluate the various cost structures by different project management software providers. These can be per-user, tiered, flat-rate, and custom pricing. Your requirements for scalability and future needs should be taken into account in the price strategy.

Talk things through with the software provider

Last but not least, it's critical to request precise quotes from the project management software providers based on your unique needs. Once your selection procedure is complete, you can finalise your software budget and options accordingly.

When you find the right software, get in touch with the provider. Deltek Vantagepoint is one unique project management solution that we want to suggest, besides other available solutions in the market. You may improve project profitability, track projects more precisely, and manage resources more effectively by streamlining your project management procedures using Deltek. Now is a great time to talk to Deltek experts and learn more about how we can help you achieve your project management goals.

Get complete visibility of your projects and financials to boost profitability

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