As a project manager, one of your top considerations should be streamlining your role and using your time and resources more effectively. With so many components going into a project management role, saving time and energy is something all of us could benefit from. In this blog post, we will take a look at some of the easiest ways to streamline your role as a project manager and the key tools that are available to you today.
1. Clear communication processes
Communication is one of the key elements of the project manager role and is something that needs to be used effectively to assist everyone involved. In order for a project to be successful, communication between team members and yourself and then you and the client needs to be managed effectively.
If you don’t find your current communication method to be the best option, research other tools available to you. Try to avoid spending time on endless phone calls and Zoom meetings, and instead use tools such as Slack which allow you to give time-sensitive updates regardless of where in the world your team is working from. By avoiding any gaps in your communication, you can ensure that no issues come about further down the line.
2. Custom software
If you aren’t already using custom software within your business, this is one of the best ways to streamline your role as project manager. You’ll find that the software is entirely customised to your needs, helping to speed up processes that may have used up hours of your time in the past. Custom software is a solution that’s available for businesses of all shapes and sizes, and it can be constantly adapted to meet your ever-changing needs. Just because you are running a smaller project, it doesn’t mean that you couldn’t benefit from adding this into your future work. Instead of having endless functions that you don’t need and that may even slow down the process, you’ll have software that just does exactly what you need and no more.
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3. Risk management
Identifying potential risks should be a critical part of your role as a project manager. We all know that risks and issues can occur with any project, but oftentimes teams neglect to spend enough time identifying these risks at the start of the project. During the initial planning stages, ensure you are putting aside time to identify risks and then establish how you will deal with them if they do arise. For a project to go ahead successfully, you’ll want to constantly review the progress and identify any risk, so you can deal with them immediately.
4. Project management tools
You’ll find hundreds of great project management tools on the market, all of which have various uses and benefits. However, when choosing a project management tool, you’ll want to ensure it’s an efficient option that will help you manage the project and streamline your workflow. Not all project management software options are equal, and some may be more detrimental than helpful. A good software solution will allow you to store all of the documentation for your project, communicate with your team, and offer timely feedback. Choose a solution that fits with your budget and requirements and that your team finds simple to use.
5. Add Milestones to Your Project
Milestones are a key tool for streamlining your workload. They help to avoid issues further down the line and ensure your client remains happy during your time working together. By dividing your project up into phases, you’ll be able to keep on top of it. Of course, be ready for changes to occur and delays to your phases, which are common factors with all projects. However, by breaking the project down into milestones, you’ll be better equipped to deal with these challenges in the future without delaying the project too much.
6. Use reporting software
Whether you create a piece of custom software for this purpose or use a ready-made solution, reporting software can help to speed up one of the most repetitive parts of the project management role. Reporting time can be cut down dramatically by using these tools, and you can set reminders to complete reports daily or weekly as required. This means you’ll never forget a deadline or get behind on your schedule. On top of that, you can also set reminders to check on your budget to ensure you aren’t exceeding your budget. A good piece of reporting software will also enable you to print and share the report once it’s completed.
7. Reuse templates
When you find yourself working on repetitive projects with similar guidelines to a previous piece of work, review other templates you’ve used previously. This could be for reporting, planning, risk assessment, and prototyping. There’s no reason you can’t reuse certain templates you’ve spent time and energy on in the past if they are still applicable to your current project. You’ll find that as well as saving you time you might also minimise errors as you will know where mistakes and issues occurred during the previous project.
By following these seven top ways to streamline your role as a project manager, you’ll find your work becomes much more enjoyable. You’ll appreciate spending less time on mundane and repetitive tasks and spending more time ensuring your project runs to your deadline and budget. Choosing a good method of communication for your team and stakeholders should be a top priority when starting a project, as this impacts almost every other aspect of your work.
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