A few months ago I set on a search for the best product and project management software to get all my product/project activities and processes streamlined while at the same time meeting all internal teams requirements.

I have used many tools in the past:  Asana, Basecamb, and Jira to name a few; all of which have their pros and cons, some are very Agile focused others are great for productive communication and team collaboration. But none actually covered all the product activity spectrum requirements and I always had to go with additional tools and software to satisfy teams needs for internal processes management such as development team bug tracking, tasks distribution and logging, Or documentation and product development cycles digital assets management even on some cases integration with client internal platform for collaboration. All the mentioned challenges when coupled with a Scrum – Agile product development process results in massive decentralized workflows that a product manager is required to deal with and follow through successfully.

In short I needed a platform where all product activities and workflows internally and externally can be managed and monitored, and product progress can be tracked and measured from upper business prospective drilling down into micro daily team tasks iterations, and finally I’m not forced to choose between Agile or no Agile I want to mix and match where ever required . The answer to this came with product visibility level I was able to a large extent achieve with Teamwork PM project management system  adoption in my recent product management role, afterwords I started migrating all teams processes and activity into Teamwork to gradually form a central communication, collaboration and management platform .

Now I’m not reviewing Teamwork PM and discussing it’s features nor I’m interested in comparing it with the other project management systems out there; You can find lots of  reviews and comparisons covering this subject. I’m only sharing my experience with the Teamwork PM platform and your free to choose whatever tools that fits your needs. First note is that Teamwork PM is not for everyone and requires a good amount of time investment to properly unlock it’s power. If your a product manager with a small team and a limited set of activities it will be counter efficient to go all the way deploying Teamwrok PM, while it will centrally satisfy all your needs the large number of tools and options offered is very tempting  to try and experiment with, landing your team in new management platform without prior preparation and planing will lead to teams efforts lost in the vast corners of the system without actually delivering the value you’ve expected. Regardless of your teams size and processes you’ll need to come up with a migration and adoption plan when moving to anew platform which eventually should make the transition smooth and painless as possible.

The best approach is to start by enabling only Teamwork PM minimum set of core features and services that you think can be easily pickedup and utilized by your team in order to accomplish what they already do on their current platform (you have full control of switching on/off any features on Teamwork) then go gradually enabling additional features based on feedback and evaluation of your team progress with the system. You will finally come to the point of creating a process plan that shapes the best practices which provide your team with most efficient and productive workflows to deliver product assets, at this point you are actually shaping teamwork to meet your product needs and unlocking its power while lowering your teams change resistance barrier.

Lastly for those just starting with Teamwork PM and need more inspiration, I’m sharing with you my own implementation plan in the diagram below (click to enlarge):

Product Releases Process & Activities Diagram

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Filed under: Product ManagmentProject management tools

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