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Old 04-22-2013, 12:59 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Any Project Managers out there?

My role at my job is more and more becoming one of project management. I have never done project management before and am starting to feel quite buried! So my question is, are any of you project managers and/or do any of you use or know of any free project management tools?

We develop software and i am looking for some way to organize all the programs we have in development, who the contacts are, what the next steps are, so on and so forth.

Ability to generate graphs/charts would be a HUGE plus.

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Old 04-22-2013, 01:04 PM   #2 (permalink)
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I also work in Software development but in OPs. Most of my role is co-ordiantion.

For myself, I use MS OneNote - helps me keep track of stuff in a managed way

For graphs, output you're really looking at MS Project or similar.

It very much depends on what type of shop you are and how you do defect tracking etc.

Being able to pull data easily from the defect tracker, will make you life a lot easier.
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Old 04-22-2013, 05:31 PM   #3 (permalink)
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MS Project is the industry standard. For a lighter "anyone can use it" solution I really like what can be done with with Sharepoint if you have it. You can set and assign tasks and track progress by requiring the assigned person to update their completion status.
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Old 04-22-2013, 06:06 PM   #4 (permalink)
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I should also mention, for personal task or small team management, i've used Trello.

Free, can use Google login, very nifty small team tool
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Old 04-22-2013, 06:08 PM   #5 (permalink)
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We're a huge IT firm and everything around here gets done with just plain MS-Project and Excel.

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I have never done project management before and am starting to feel quite buried!
Welcome to the horrific world of IT!
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Old 04-22-2013, 06:15 PM   #6 (permalink)
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As far as all the other stuff (techniques and info over tools), our company puts a lot of weight on PMP certification.

PMI - the World

I've been resisting the move myself, but then comes the day when you can't tolerate being supervised by fools anymore and say "I might as well do that".
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Old 04-24-2013, 01:29 AM   #7 (permalink)
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I should also mention, for personal task or small team management, i've used Trello.

Free, can use Google login, very nifty small team tool
I've used Trello too. It essentially functions the same way we had our Sharepoint set up. Nice tool for small teams indeed!
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Old 04-25-2013, 10:25 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Wrike.com has a few interesting concepts, and a free trial period. It does cost a bit to use full-time, though.

Most convenient, you can assign tasks to people, and they can track duration of those tasks. Some of the premium features include Gantt charts.
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Old 04-25-2013, 10:48 PM   #9 (permalink)
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My advice: get really good at Excel. Access is good, too. Understand how to use MS Project. I don't know what field you're in, but many companies in my industry - telecom - have their own hack-job of a project management database.

Personally, on the vendor side of things - at least at the moment - I prefer to build/export/manipulate trackers in Excel for distribution to my own team as well as using them to back up the often janky, always too many hands in the pot proprietary client solutions. When I'm particularly lucky, I can maintain schedules in Excel or Access and paste them straight into the customer's tool.
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