You have just finished signing all of the necessary documents and specifications with your client regarding the upcoming project your company will develop. So it’s high time to start thinking about the development process itself and how to organize it effectively.
This is where the choice of the right project management software plays a very important role. I think many of you have heard about JIRA and other Atlassian solutions, such as Confluence or BitBucket.
We at Oxagile are devoted users of Atlassian products (and we’re not the only ones). But if you take some time to explore the market you’ll find that there are other great tools for project management. And, in this post, we’ll take a look at them.
But, first of all, we’d like to mention JIRA again. It’s just such a powerful tool that it can’t go unnoticed. It doesn’t impress you with some super cool design but in the end, that’s not what you’re expecting from it. One of the best features is time management – you can track the time spent on each task and see what has been done. Bug tracking is also realized at the highest level. Numerous add-ons allow for expanding JIRA possibilities even further (for example, creating Gannt charts or Zephyr, testing platform).
Personally, I think Atlassian rightly holds first place as an enterprise project management software provider. But it also should be mentioned that their pricing enables small businesses to use this software as well.
We have worked with some clients who use Mantis as their primary project management software. And we can clearly see the reasons for such a choice.
First of all, Mantis is an open source project written in PHP. Thus, it is free and can be customized by PHP developers very easily depending on what a particular project requires. And this is actually why we mention it here. Initially, Mantis is a bug tracking tool but a lot of users configure it to serve as a project management tools as well.
Mantis is a web based system but with the help of an add-on that you can download directly from their site you can get a mobile interface to use the system on the go. Again, if we are speaking about time management, then you need to customize the original system.
Trac is one of the first players on the market. This is a Python written project management and bug tracking system. Just like Mantis, Trac is an open source project.
This software allows you to create tickets for tasks within projects. You can assign such fields as priority, owner, component, and milestone to the tickets, which will help you to effectively track the completeness of the task. It also should be mentioned that Trac has a strong community of developers who have developed add-ons helping to improve the original system. And some of these add-ons are recommended as essential by users themselves.
In general, Trac proves to be a very useful tool for managing projects, especially the ones based on agile methodology.
One of Mavenlink’s most prominent features is Google Apps, Microsoft Office, and Intuit QuickBooks integration. Thus, you can run the whole project via only one application and at the same time use other tools such as Excel or Gmail. This tool has a great time tracking feature that also allows your clients to see what has exactly been done on their project and how much time has been spent.
And speaking about clients. Not long ago Mavenlink launched a financial management reporting system that allows you to invoice your client through Mavenlink. It also allows you to view paid invoices and work in progress.
An official mobile application allows you to work with Mavenlink on the go. In addition, Mavenlink released their HTML5 website last year so that your team can access the project from any place without installing additional apps.
From our experience, we can say that in the IT industry Basecamp is used by smaller companies. It’s a simple but powerful project management tool with a great and easy-to-understand design.
Basecamp offers such features as milestone management, time tracking, file sharing, messaging system, and more. As in some other systems, Basecamp can also boast a number of add-ons developed by third-party developers. Basecamp encourages the initiative of developing integrations, apps, and add-ons by providing free access to their API.
It goes without saying that the software programs that we have highlighted in this article are not the only ones out there. If you take a look at this article from Wikipedia, you’ll see other great and useful tools. Tastes differ. So you can tell us what project management software you use in the comments section.