5 TOP ENTERPRISE PROJECT MANAGEMENT SYSTEMS COMPARED

Enterprise Project management system is a set of tools that ensure project management and increase the efficiency of their implementation. This means that the program is based on the concepts of an automated control system. All such systems have specific goals and objectives. Selecting a suitable project management software for enterprises can be a hard task given the numerous good quality platforms available in the market. Some like to keep it simple, with just a standard task and workflow system, while others add features like chatting, calendar syncing, and workflow management.

 

 

Key Features of Enterprise Project Management Software

Project Portfolio Management is the main feature in EPM software. This module helps you to schedule and allocate your company’s resources optimally to achieve financial and operational goals. Firms that handle multiple projects need to have the ability to balance and centralize the projects and for this PPM is essential. Portfolio managers in large organizations spend most of their time on PPM systems. However, this tool needs consistent maintenance to remain effective and viable. But also you should consider File Sharing, Video Conferencing, and Internal Messaging, Calendar, Dashboards, Mobile Access, Integrations, Security, etc.

 

But the PPM landscape is everchanging. And according to the latest Garner “Magic Quadrant for Project and Portfolio Management”

  • By 2023, 80% of organizations will have an enterprise project, program, or product management office (PMO) focused on integrating products and programs.
  • By 2021, at least 40% of large enterprise IT organizations will have completed their implementation of a product-centric approach.
  • By 2023, 65% of organizations shifted its focus closer to product-centric philosophy. That consequently changed their approaches and needs in the digital business area.
  • By 2023, technology providers focused on artificial intelligence (AI), virtual reality (VR), and digital platforms will change the market landscape for traditional providers within the PM and PPM market.

 

If earlier the question was “PM or PPM,” now its rapidly transforming into “Portfolio or Execution Configurations.” At the portfolio level, PPM leaders are interested in aligning and prioritizing the projects and programs with value markers (predefined in organization long term goals or more “contemporarily” defined by business leaders). Those markers can include how does the pre-define strategy unravel, some key business outcomes, positive business transformations, etc. PPM technology can support many of these interests, but sometimes it needs to be “twigged” to your business entities needs. Which in terms of technology means ability to be customized. For newbies the question of “to PPM or not to PPM?” became just a little bit more complex. However, for those of us, who’d realized the need for uniting all the business data in one ergonomic automated system long before yesterday, this means just a little bit more options to consider. So, when approaching the PPM solution issue in your enterprise, you have two main points to consider:

  1. Either you choose wisely – consider all the pros and cons of the system you’re about to adopt and find the one that suits you like a glove.
  2. Or find the one that is designed to be easily customized to fulfill all your needs.
  3. In case you’ve already “in the game and have chosen your champion” – looking for ways to improve your system of choice might be the only option.

 

Best Enterprise Project Management Tools: Pros and Cons

For people who are addicted to project management software and tools, there has never been a better time to be alive. Task management apps, bullet journals, simple lists, Getting Things Done we have a wealth of options from which to choose. The elegance of modern enterprise project management software is based on sheer efficiency: You can copy and paste text, easily check off completed actions and drag and drop items into your preferred organizational structure. Everyone has different ways of getting work done, and every manager needs a way to hit their deadlines, track the time their employees spent working on tasks, and collaborate with their team. And luckily, there are hundreds of online programs that do just that. Lucky for us, there are thousands of Capterra reviews, as well as helpful case studies highlighting the PROs and CONs for every tool there is. We’ve decided to stop at five most popular toolkits of our time:

 

 

Project Online

 

In the beginning, there was Project Online, probably the most well-known and widely used project management software and listed on Capterra as number one in the top 20 most popular project management software. Project Online is a modern, swift, and lightweight descendant of Microsoft Project, which excited in the early days. As the way of managing and running projects has evolved so too has the software, leading to new cloud-based, highly sophisticated, integrated alternatives Project Online became that alternative – first of its kind. Using Project Online managers, rather than being shackled to their desktop, have the flexibility to manage their projects anytime, anywhere there is an internet connection on laptop, tablet or mobile. Project Online is the industry standard for many project managers who like its ability to work with SharePoint.

 

PROs

  1. It is a flexible app for project portfolio management (PPM) and tasks, offered through Office 365.
  2. Microsoft is strengthening its messaging to customers and its partner network to reduce complexity and confusion on how to implement and leverage its PPM technologies. This includes helping customers more easily understand how to combine and configure the various Microsoft PPM components to meet specific PPM and business needs.
  3. Project Online allows users to evaluate the impact of unplanned work on portfolios of programs and projects. Users can capture and track formal project or work change requests, and assess the impact of these changes on work, durations, costs, and resources.
  4. Project Online integrates with different Microsoft, such as Microsoft Flow, Microsoft Teams, Microsoft Planner and Microsoft Project Online, and leverages these components in a modern way.
  5. Microsoft Project Online customers will have access to Project Service as part of their Project Online subscriptions. These customers should refrain from overly customizing (rather than configuring) their use of Project Online until the two offerings are combined into one platform and unified UX.

 

CONs

  1. Rigid learning curve: Some though it lacks the intuitive approach of the ‘newer’ software. It can be far more complicated for most teams. It is an investment in training and resources to fully leverage the software.
  2. Lack of Customization options: Software is quite difficult to customize. However, to remedy the situation, you can use FluentPro’s “Quickstart Project Online Implementation Solution.”
  3. Microsoft offers many PPM-enabling products and options for its customers, especially project managers who want to successfully manage and report on their projects. However, continued customer feedback indicates that Microsoft must improve its customer.
  4. Project Online offers strong capabilities for named resource management at the detailed project and execution levels. However, dynamic resource management at the portfolio level, with the ability to create multiple scenarios and assess potential positive or negative impacts, would be a welcome addition that could expose macrolevel budget and schedule risks.

 

Smartsheet

 

In the last few years, the popularity of Smartsheet seems to have dropped from being fourth in the Capterra top 20 most popular project management software in November 2013 to ninth in September 2017. Smartsheet is a web-based project management tool and although not available for windows IT, is compatible for mobile.  Smartsheet is used across organizations to track and manage diverse types of work for teams large and small and includes tools for team task management, crowdsourcing, and sales pipeline tracking – so this tool is great if you need to track your sales pipeline within projects.  The task management and sales pipeline tracking tools are a clear winner however the stability of the software may be letting it down.

 

 

PROs:

  1. One benefit that some other task management services don’t offer is that you can assign a task to multiple people, and group a project of many steps and assign each step to a different person.
  2. It’s also very easy to identify the tasks assigned to a particular person or tasks for a full project – it’s easy to sort and filter to view only the information you need.

CONs:

  1. One of the biggest problems is its stability. Mondays seem to be the worst – the service runs slow, and sometimes you can’t even log in, and of course. Mondays are the day when everyone needs access the most, to remind them what projects are at the top of the list for the week. It’s also got a high learning curve.

 

 

Asana

 

Asana is a web-based software tool used to help with team collaboration. Its main benefit is that it allows users to manage tasks or projects online without having to use email. Each team is given a workspace, and within that workspace are specific tasks. Under each task, users and team members can follow the projects they need to so that if anything changes, followers of that specific project with getting updates or changes sent to them automatically. Tasks tracking is implemented marvelously there. The ability to enter modify tasks at the speed of thought helps get thoughts down before focus is lost. Asana also allows companies to use the product at enterprise scale.

 

PRO’s

  1. Between workspaces, projects, sections, tasks, and subtasks organization is a breeze.
  2. Easily set recurring tasks for things that need to be completed more than once.
  3. Cuts down on the number of emails and messages needed to discuss project or task details.
  4. An easy-to-access calendar synced with all of your tasks, so you never lose track of what needs to be done.

CON’s

  1. Unfortunately, you cannot assign multiple people to the same task with Asana.
  2. With so many tasks and documents in the same place sometimes the UI can get a bit slow
  3. Since the program is heavily text-based, it’s easy to accidentally break structure, remove a task, or change its naming.
  4. There is no way to track time with Asana, unfortunately.

 

 

Trello

 

Trello is another popular software tool for office collaboration, and it’s an efficient one too as it makes use of the Kanban paradigm, first popularized by Toyota back in the 1980s for the supply chain management. All projects within Trello are represented by “boards,” which contain lists and cards that allow you to drag and drop and progress from one task to the next, mirroring the flow of a feature from idea to execution. Users can then be assigned cards that contain their tasks or projects, and these cards can be moved, updated, and even be used for communication about a specific task. Cards hold comments, attachments, checklists, and even due dates that sync automatically with the calendar. It’s pretty simple, but it sure has gotten a lot of companies to switch over to Trello.

 

PRO’s

  1. The easy-to-navigate boards make it feel like you always have everything you need sitting right in front of you.
  2. Invite outside members, create closed boards, or add public boards.
  3. This “horizontal” tool is multi-purpose, meaning you can handle everything with it;
  4. All your tasks can be set with a due date, and once set all tasks, sync with your calendar for each board.
  5. Seamless Integration: Paying users can integrate with Slack, GitHub, and Salesforce.
  6. Easy to use and set up the lists and cards.
  7. Gives an easy to follow the view of project progress to all parties involved.

 

CON’s

  1. While items can be organized into specific tasks and cards, once aboard collects many cards, the board can easily get crowded and cluttered.
  2. Unfortunately, Trello does not have time tracking capabilities either.
  3. There’s no way to add a project overview or any sub-task functionality.
  4. Print and export functionality isn’t great on the free version, you can only export to JSON format, and the printer prints everything in a single list, and the applied labels don’t output.

 

JIRA

 

Jira is familiarly standard these days at any software development company. This is the most powerful and flexible project management tool, but there’s a learning curve in terms of setting the workflows up. It has an extensive feature set, and customizations are endless. Everything integrated into it – from Confluence, Bitbucket & Project management. That said it requires significant administration effort to use.

 

PRO’s

  1. Because so many people use Jira, lots of vendors make sure that their products interface with Jira as well.
  2. Create custom workflows of any size that match the exact way your teams build, test, and release software.
  3. Create a personalized view of JIRA. Share dashboards to track project status, create custom reports, and monitor team wallboards.

CON’s

  1. When there are a lot of individual subtasks that are linked to the master task, the workflow can become difficult to follow.
  2. JIRA is a complex program that comes with a bit of a learning curve for most.

 

How to Choose Enterprise Project Management Solution for you?

What is right depends more on a matter of work type and personal preference, and you need to do a bit of research and find out what will be the best fit.

Get to know each product with a free trial. Top enterprise project management software providers offer a free trial or demo of their product to enable users to try out the features free of cost and make a comparison of different tools. This will help you to gauge how useful the online product can be for your company.

 

Benefits of enterprise project management software:

  • Enterprise project management tools provide complete control over your projects.
  • You can track all tasks, including minor ones, and ensure no detail is missed.
  • EPM gives you flexibility in budget and resource allocation as well as a control well beyond the planning phase.
  • You can use automated budgeting and billing processes to reduce errors and administrative overhead.
  • You can deal with discrepancies and problems in real-time before they become major issues.
  • Reduces overall costs as the software streamlines processes and improves efficiencies.
  • Minimizes downtime and helps to complete projects successfully on schedule.
  • You can plan, schedule, and manage even complex projects.
  • Distribute resources and monitor progress
  • Visualize and communicate project performance against the plan
  • Conduct what-if analysis and allow alternative project plans to improve the efficiency and speed of project execution
  • Schedules can be updated by multiple users simultaneously.
  • The software can generate a schedule and resource graphics and reports.

 

As we can see, all these systems have their strengths and flaws, and it might be difficult to make a choice, especially if you need the tool to fit the requirements of different teams who often manage projects differently. With PPM Express, it is possible to start with several systems, for example, Jira – for technical teams, Asana – for Marketing and Sales, Project Online – for large-scale engineering projects, etc. PPM Express takes critical project and portfolio data from the systems of record and provides unified status management functionality and reporting, so that executives can see the “big picture” without having to micro-manage teams.

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