In this blog, I’m going to talk about the software we use at GSP Planning in general terms. There are several different examples of project management software available today, ranging from the relatively simple Microsoft Project through to more sophisticated (and expensive) versions such as Primavera P6 & Asta Powerproject. Some are easier to pick up & use than others, and each of them has their own set of advantages and idiosyncrasies, but I’m not going to analyse each one individually here – rather what I hope to do is give an overview of how this type of software can be utilised and what advantages is can give to project delivery. We love to get feedback, and some might not agree with what is written here – so please use the comments section below to give your opinion…
What is project management software?
Project management software is a tool that can help you to plan your project, prescribe the order of activities, keep track of progress, analyse data such as resource and cost, evaluate changes with what if scenarios and generate project reports.
The benefits of using project management software include:
- The software performs all the intensive recalculations and reporting for you, allowing you to spend your time overseeing the project instead of recalculating and analysing the schedule manually.
- You can produce focused reports that are tailored precisely to your needs.
- You do not have to redraw your plans by hand every time you make a change.
- You can easily experiment with alternative scenarios and see the effect that one change to a plan has on the whole project.
- You can save your plans at regular intervals, keeping a permanent record of a project’s progress at every stage.
Project management software lets you bring time, costs and resources together into one integrated, manageable plan. Having an understanding of project management principles will help you reap the benefits of project management software.
Using project management software, you can also specify the skills required to complete tasks, then allocate individual resources to the task subsequently to fulfil the demand. This is known as ‘demand and scheduled resourcing’.
Additionally you can create calendars for resources and tasks. If necessary, each resource can have its own calendar. When you assign a resource to a task, you can choose whether the resource works to its own calendar or to the task’s calendar.