Top Smartphone Apps for Project Management and Collaboration.

Smartphone applications can help your staff to collaborate and to work remotely. Here's a round-up of the top project management apps.

projectmanagementapps

The face of modern business has changed drastically in the past few years. Businesses are becoming increasingly global: many companies now operate across national and international borders. At the same time, employees have been asking for more flexible working patterns: for instance the ability to work from home or the ability to set their own working hours.

The new way of doing business means that companies need to reconsider how they manage their projects. Rather than requiring everything to be done in person, companies can empower their staff to work remotely. This can involve making use of mobile technology to enable collaboration and to encourage teamwork.

In this article, we consider the top smartphone applications for project management and collaborative working.

1. Asana. Manage projects and organise your team using a shared task list.

One of the biggest challenges with remote working is co-ordinating the activities of your entire team. Without regular meetings to take stock of progress, it can sometimes be difficult to focus the entire team on the same goal. Certain activities can be delayed and can jeopardise the progress of the entire project.

One application that helps with project management is Asana. Developed by one of the co-founders at Facebook, it’s a task management app that’s shared amongst your team. Project managers can use Asana to set up individual tasks and milestones. Each task within a project can be prioritised, given a deadline and assigned to an owner. Based on this information, the whole team can use the app to find out which tasks they need to complete. It’s also possible to get a project-wide view of how their work fits in.

  • Price: Free (for teams up to 15 members).

  • Available on: iPhone and Android devices.

2. Dropbox. Share and synchronise files across multiple devices.

Dropbox allows you to share and synchronise documents across multiple devices. By placing your files in a Dropbox folder, they’re made available to your smartphone, tablet, PC and internet browser. Changes made on one device are automatically synchronised to the rest of your devices.

Dropbox also has shared folder functionality. This can be used to make files available to your colleagues. Whenever someone changes a document in the shared folder, the file is automatically updated on everyone’s device. Your team should always have access to the latest version of a file: this brings an end to the problem of having multiple versions that diverge over time. Shared folders are also a good alternative to exchanging e-mail attachments.

According to Dropbox, their service is currently used by 2 million businesses.

  • Price: Free (up to 2GB storage). $795/year for business edition (unlimited storage  for 5 users).

  • Available on: iPhone, Android and BlackBerry devices.

3. Google Drive & Microsoft Office 365. Edit documents using your smartphone.

With the office applications from Google and Microsoft, you can use your smartphone to work on documents, spreadsheets and presentations. Owing to the limited space available on a smartphone, you won’t get the full functionality of a desktop-based suite. However, you’ll find most of the basic functionality that’s used on a daily basis. A key benefit of the applications from Google and Microsoft are that multiple people can work on the same document. Changes are synchronised and merged across multiple users.

Google Drive:

Microsoft Office 365:

4. Skype. Free video calls from your smartphone or tablet.

If you aren’t able to hold a meeting in person, Skype can be a good alternative. It allows you to make free video calls to other Skype users.

Skype is available on most modern smartphones. However, you’ll need to have a sufficiently fast internet connection (either Wi-Fi or 3G mobile broadband). If your tariff has a restricted download limit, keep a careful eye on Skype’s data use. A video call can consume 270MB of data every hour. With an all you can eat data plan, you can use Skype as much as you like without the need to worry about data consumption.

For a fully-featured alternative, consider Cisco WebEx. Many businesses prefer this due to features like a shared whiteboard. Cisco WebEx is available on iPhone, Android and BlackBerry devices.

5. Evernote Business. Share knowledge & information from across your business.

Evernote Business is an app for sharing information across your company. It provides a centralised location where staff can upload product information, design assets, minutes for a meeting and other information relating to their work. All of the information gets indexed and is made searchable by other staff. The app can be accessed from a PC, a smartphone or via the web. Whether you’re in the office or away elsewhere, you can easily find and access company resources.

Increase productivity with a BYOD policy. Download your free eGuide now: ‘Bring Your Own Device’ - how to stay in control

 

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