Agile project management tools for 2021February 23, 2021
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Where were we all, and what were we thinking about, 365 days ago? It probably wasn’t full-scale remote office planning or sourcing new online project management tools for a pandemic. It might have even been a laughable consideration…working from home, going to zooms, with children at home from school, indefinitely, screaming in the background…and there, as it was, the year that was 2020 – nightmare fuel.
Professional Career / Parenting Nightmare Fuel Formula:
(Child Headcount + Child Dependent Age) x (Minutes from last snack + Minute length of absolutely critical client / team call) = CHAOS.
We all laughed at poor Professor Robert Kelly, who was on BBC only a few years ago. Now Mr.Kelly’s worst on-air nightmares can be yours, too. And just think, he had a nanny.
As 2021 begins, many PMs are turning to agile project management tools and some new ideas on how to manage remote project teams.
Adopting Agile Project Management Tools
Inherited from the software industry, Agile Project Management has grown as a trend for those handling complex projects that run long durations. Agile management tools are common amongst software development firms using chat services like Slack and MS Teams, instead of email for internal communications.
“Now, if you asked me how many have an ambition to do this at scale, we’ve done recent survey work across a broad spectrum of companies, across industries, that says 70 percent of companies in some shape or form are piloting agile management now.”
–Shail Thaker (www.mckinsey.com)
In tough times business developers and project managers need new ways to get more juice from the markets they squeeze. Unlike waterfall management that is a rigid and linear series of project phases holding to a strict scope; agile project management breaks projects into smaller billable sprints. Thereby encouraging adaptive planning, self-organizing, evolutionary project development, continual data analysis, on-going QA, more consistent delivery times, and happier clients.
MS Teams, Slack, and Chat Bots
Deep, deep down we all want to kill internal email. Thankfully, Slack was released over a decade ago with a free subscription to address this pain. As a chat-based service, it brought project teams into a fluid place to converse, share, debate and decide on the direction of projects. Recently Slack passed 10M daily users. However, in early 2020 Microsoft released MS Teams and that has really put the foot down with more native chat tools and over 75M daily users in just its first year.
While chat can be as simple as ICQ, now professional chat solutions support more complex text engagement, file attachment, call and video options, as well as chat bots. Chat bots will be a growing space as more and more project management tools are built into chat services. Tools such as in-chat alerts, content streaming, and live reporting within chat will become a more common service.
Rapid Growth of AI in online project management tools
Published numbers suggest that the AI market will grow into a $190B industry over the next 5 years. Spending on AI may reach nearly $60B by end of 2021. AI will be spanning most industries over the next few years with some of the highest paying tech jobs. It will have a significant impact on automating project management tools and reporting tasks previously carried out by employees.
AI will serve:
A growing pain for better team communication and oversight;
Project management’s need automation of simpler or auditing tasks;
Financial pain has demanded better tools to identify opportunities in efficiency;
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