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friendly project management software?
Posted by: freescotland
Date: June 05, 2006 07:29AM
I've been asked to take on a fairly large project (a major event), in addition to my other duties of course, which has a lot of elements which I need to follow up and track progress.

Any suggestions for easy to learn project management software?

Here's what I already own: Omni outliner came with my intel imac. I also have Filemaker Pro 7 and Entourage.

I would gladly purchase something else if I could get it up an running with minimum learning curve. Any suggestions?



Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 06/05/2006 07:58AM by freescotland.
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Re: friendly project management software?
Posted by: dotman
Date: June 05, 2006 08:18AM
[www.basecamphq.com]

dot.
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Re: friendly project management software?
Posted by: trisho.
Date: June 05, 2006 08:47AM
I second Basecamp. It's extremely easy to use and clients also have a participatory role. You can sign up for the free or low cost one just to try it out.



trisho.
----------------
Official Card-Carrying Mother Earthin' Sl*t.
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Re: friendly project management software?
Posted by: cbelt3
Date: June 05, 2006 10:27AM
The more specific question is- what are you looking to get from this 'software' ?
You can manage the most complex of projects with a pencil and lots of pieces of paper. Or you can absorb yourself into the often ugly world of project management 'systems'.
Are you just keeping a schedule ?
Are you enabling communication (pretty much the #1 job for any project manager) ?
Are you defining, managing, and statusing tasks for other people ?
Or are you just checklisting yourself ?

Most people pick up a tool like MS Project and proceed to overkill with it. They absorb all their time futzing with an imaginary view of the project's schedule and forget the real world. And drive everyone around them bats.

Step back and think about how you want to manage your project, then proceed to look for a set of tools that will help you do it. But don't forget- the main tool is the one between your ears.
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Re: friendly project management software?
Posted by: Silencio
Date: June 05, 2006 01:00PM
Agree with CBelt.

If you need something that will support online collaboration, Basecamp is pretty good.

If it's just for yourself or a small group, then check out FastTrack Schedule. I've been pretty happy with it over the years; it's a good solution for switchers who miss their M$ Project...

[www.aecsoftware.com]
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Re: friendly project management software?
Posted by: MysteryGuest
Date: June 05, 2006 01:25PM
I've never known a real world project to conform to the ideal version of it built in Project or Fasttrack. You can waste a lot of time fooling around with the pretty, pretty graphs.

I like Basecamp, but I haven't had a lot of luck actually getting the clients to use it. That said, the learning curve for Basecamp is practically non-existent and the price is right (they have a free version).
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Re: friendly project management software?
Posted by: freescotland
Date: June 05, 2006 01:52PM
Quote
cbelt3
The more specific question is- what are you looking to get from this 'software' ?
You can manage the most complex of projects with a pencil and lots of pieces of paper. Or you can absorb yourself into the often ugly world of project management 'systems'.
Are you just keeping a schedule ?
Are you enabling communication (pretty much the #1 job for any project manager) ?
Are you defining, managing, and statusing tasks for other people ?
Or are you just checklisting yourself ?

Most people pick up a tool like MS Project and proceed to overkill with it. They absorb all their time futzing with an imaginary view of the project's schedule and forget the real world. And drive everyone around them bats.

Step back and think about how you want to manage your project, then proceed to look for a set of tools that will help you do it. But don't forget- the main tool is the one between your ears.


Great questions.

I suppose I'm basically checklisting myself. I am not, by nature very organized, and this project has a lot of tentacles reaching in many directions. A committee formed to help has collapsed and now I've got to get it done.

thanks for the reply and the thoughtful questions.
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Re: friendly project management software?
Posted by: $tevie
Date: June 06, 2006 12:06AM
Basecamp is very easy to figure out, and you can just ignore the components that don't appeal to you. It can be as simple or as complicated as you decide you want it to be.



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