Regardless of the type of project (occasional or recurring), project managers are often confronted with challenges that delay project timelines i.e. bad time management, lack of transparency between colleagues, & poorly allocated resources.
Adopting a project management software solution is one of the best responses to confronting those challenges. In this article, we invite you to learn more about major challenges encountered by Project Managers and their solutions like Visual Planning to help mitigate inefficiencies.
Project Management : what is it?
Project management combines a range of tools, techniques and methods that enable a project manager and their teams to successfully complete a variety of tasks and projects. A project is considered successful if it meets its defined objectives such as timeframe and budget.
Every project follows 5 phases:
- Project definition: Identifying objectives and predicted results.
- Project launch: Allocating resources i.e., staff, budgets, and materials.
- Project planning: detailing milestones, deadlines, and check-ins to ensure project completion.
- Project execution: Overseeing project development and adjusting timelines as necessary.
- Project delivery: Administering results and quantifying success factor.
What are the main difficulties encountered by project managers?
While on paper project planning seems straightforward, the reality is project managers are often forced to adapt their original plans to meet their end goals.
As a result, project managers are not strangers to problem-solving. We’ve developed a list detailing common roadblocks faced when it relates to task management:
➡️ Difficulties with time management
Being able to balance staff workloads, monitor project development, and scheduling future assignments; all while mitigating burnout is a skill in itself. This is why, being able to establish a meticulous schedule that specifies skillsets, availability, and resources for each project; ensure that stability between productivity and efficiency is possible.
➡️ Difficulty in uniting teams
Teamwork is easier said than done when there is a lack of clarity between collaborators. In some cases, confidence in leadership tends to waver when roles are not clearly defined. This is why it is important to explain to members of a team the goals of the project and the roles and responsibilities they play to reach those results.
➡️ Difficulty with project planning
Project planning is a crucial step that should not be ignored. To ensure an efficient organization, the action plan must be clear, understood and approved by all. For example, Gantt charts are an ideal tool to visualize the entire project at a glance. Milestones are also necessary to allow teams to know where they stand and motivate them once they reach the set objectives.
➡️ Difficulty with adjusting to unforeseen circumstances
One of the qualities expected from a good project manager is the ability to step back throughout the project to take corrective measures in case of unexpected events. Sometimes, tasks take longer than expected, tools may break down… In other words, risk management is necessary. It’s important to have tools and practices in places to adapt to unanticipated outcomes.This way, the project manager can ensure that the right measures are taken at the right time.
What are the solutions provided by a project management tool?
To deal with challenges encountered, project managers have solutions that help them plan and manage projects in real time. Indeed, a project management tool, like Visual Planning, offers multiple advantages:
It ensures a perfect organization
The tool allows you to define the different actions to be carried out, to identify the links between these different missions and to prioritize these tasks.
It makes it easy to allocate the right resources at the right time
Moreover, a planning management software allows you to assign the appropriate resources (manpower, materials, tools…) according to availability, skills and their location.
Setting up a detailed schedule makes possible to identify the tasks and their status: to be executed, in progress, completed. Thus, each person can organize himself/herself accordingly in order to meet the deadlines.
It facilitates communication between the project manager and his team
A project management software facilitates collaborative work by allowing the different actors of the project to communicate with each other in real time through chats, alerts, notifications, etc. Thus, everyone knows where they stand, updates their information in real time and can alert the project manager in case of a problem. And one of the main advantages of a project management tool is that the data (project schedule, timesheets, Gantt charts, dashboards) is completely secure and accessible remotely via a simple Internet connection.