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Better Project Management with PBworks
Most high-value work in organizations gets done by teams of people working together. But today's de facto standard tools for project management -- e-mail chains and attachments -- actually hurt project team efficiency and effectiveness.
PBworks online project workspaces offer a comprehensive, unified, work-centric approach to managing projects of all shapes and sizes -- from a short three-day/four-person sprint to a multi-stage cross-functional effort. They work well for internal projects, and offer exceptional value for cross-department or cross-company teams that include suppliers, business partners or customers.
PBworks helps you be more effective in all phases of project management.
- Project Startup & Creative Collaboration
- Coordinating Project Work
- Information Sharing
- More Efficient Meetings
- Better Project Results
PBworks helps get projects started right by making it easy to define the right project team, set clear objectives and plans, and encouraging "outside the box" brainstorming and creativity.
Rapid, Repeatable Implementation
Set up a new project workspace with just a few clicks. Use a template to follow your standard project process (structure, content, tasks and milestones). Select the team members, and you're up and running in less than 60 seconds.
Use workspace pages to encourage creative brainstorming and get the ideas flowing. Publish a draft set of objectives and a project plan, gather feedback, rapidly iterate and edit. Increased project team "buy-in" by giving people a chance to contribute and shape the project.
Define a Plan
Embody your project plan in the structure of the project workspace. Define folders for sub-teams to work, and others to collect data. Tweak the milestones and tasks, and assign them with due dates. Everyone on the team sees the plan, and knows their part in it.
PBworks has several capabilities that help to coordinate team activities and keep a project on track. And unlike other tools, the project management is tightly linked to the actual deliverables and work product.
Tasks and Milestones
Define project milestones and assign and track the tasks required to meet them. Comment on tasks as they evolve to keep everyone "in sync" on status. Add links to pages, files, or outside URLs so that whoever is working on a task has all the context they need to complete the task quickly and efficiently.
Notifications and Updates
Set the project workspace to automatically notify you via e-mail when important documents, pages or status changes. Adjust notifications to the frequency you need -- from immediate to every few hours or once a day. Simply e-mail updates to the workspace, and they're instantly available to your team members.
Activity Streams and Microblogging
PBworks automatically generates an activity stream that tracks detailed changes in project documents or task status. Dial the level of detail you need -- see every change, or just those the major ones.
Built-in Workspace Chat
Built-in instant messaging makes it easy to chat with team members about shared work. Instantly call up a list of team members and ask about a change in plan or the results in the most recent spreadsheet.
PBworks helps you organize and share the information you need to carry out your project, and keeps everyone on the same page.
Enable Team Collaboration
Define project plans and collaborate on work-in-process with dynamic workspace pages. Starting a new activity? Make a page. Encourage comments, feedback and editing. Link pages together for easy navigation. The result is a more collaborative team effort.
Manage Project Documents
Upload spreadsheets, reports and PDFs. Share PowerPoint presentations. PBworks automatically handles document revisions, allowing you to revert back to earlier versions and making sure everyone is working from the most recent one.
Balance Sharing and Privacy
Organize pages, files and documents into folders with appropriate access controls. Keep work in progress private, and share interim results for review by the broader team or by the project's "customer".
Meetings seem to be the necessary but least favorite part of any project. PBworks eliminates the need for many meetings and makes your remaining meetings more effective.
Replacing Meetings with Real-time Status
A snapshot of the tasks and milestones in your project workspace shows you project status at a glance -- which are late, which are due, which are upcoming, and who's responsible. Drill down to see comments on individual tasks and how they are proceeding. Challenge your team to eliminate unpopular "status meetings" using these built-in tools.
Meeting Organization and Notes
Start every project meeting that you do hold with a page showing its goal, attendees and agenda. Use a template to standardize the structure. Project the page during the meeting, take notes and assign action items right there in real time. Eliminate questions about "what did we decide" with a living trail of project history.
Ad Hoc Meetings and Live Edit
When the project reaches one of those points where "3 or 4 of us just need to sort this out", PBworks can help. Use click-to-call to set up a voice conference with key colleagues "on the fly". Share a page with live editing, and hammer out changes then and there. In a concentrated ten minutes, you can move the project forward and save a week's worth of e-mail exchanges.
The bottom line for any project is the final work product and results. Did it deliver the expected business impact? Will its impact last? PBworks project workspaces are designed to coordinate all aspects of a project to deliver better results.
Enhanced Collaboration and "Buy-In"
A project workspace encourages participation and teamwork. It engages team members more broadly, and more deeply. As a result, people are more "bought in" to the results, and the project is more likely to have lasting impact.
Structured Review and Feedback
PBworks helps to avoid surprises at the end of a project by encouraging structured review and feedback during the project life cycle. Get comments on interim results. Make sure that issues and questions are addressed in the final work product. Publicize milestones so the windows for review and comment are broadly visible.
Whether the "customer" for a project is a paying customer or an internal manager or group, a project workspace can help to make them more engaged during the project cycle. And if the project needs follow-through and ongoing implementation, the workspace can help to coordinate that, too.
Archives Create a "Project Knowledgebase"
At project completion, archive the project workspace. It's removed from day-to-day lists of projects and active searches, but always there as part of a project archive that can be searched and mined. Next year, when a team member says "I remember we did something like this before...", tap the stored knowledge to cut cycles and build on that foundation -- even if the new project team is completely different.