Purchasing Project Management Software: An Opportunity to Invest Wisely

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When purchasing project management software, the main goal that should be in mind, to gain the most value from that software, is that it meets the requirements of the user community. When working in a multiple user-type environment, the software has to be versatile, customizable and completely conformable to each of the specific needs of the user. The application with the least amount of gaps at the best life cycle cost equates to the most intelligent investment.

Procurement in any organization requires management approval. As the cost of the purchase increases more levels of management will be needed to move forward. As the dollar value gets greater so does its visibility. The purchase, therefore, can become an opportunity to demonstrate the ability to invest with insight.

Large software investments can yield significant productivity increases. They can also result in reducing staff efficiency. There can be multiple measurable collateral benefits. If not selected properly there can be many adverse impacts. What key factor makes the difference between a wise investment or a poor use of financial resources?

Project Management Software, Meeting the Requirements

The single most important element to bear in mind when purchasing project management software is making sure it meets the requirements of the user communities. There are the users that work with the application daily to perform their work like Project Managers, Schedulers and Estimators. Each type of stakeholder has a different set of requirements. Schedulers, for example, want the ability to differentiate Level of Effort from Duration, Estimators want to home in on Work Packages, Project Managers want accuracy on percent complete measurements and so on.

Executives who don’t work with the application but receive reports that are their outputs represent another user community with their own unique set of requirements. It is vital that all the stakeholder communities be clearly identified and their individual requirements identified. The key is to select a software package that best meets the documented requirements. The application with the least amount of gaps at the best life cycle cost equates to the most intelligent investment.

An Investment in Project Management Software

If the investment proves itself to be wise the manager or managers who advocated the procurement will, in short order, be able to view, measure and confirm the improvements and savings that come from the implementation.

Investing wisely will not only bring positive financial returns but will, over time; improve the performance of the project management organization as a whole as well as that of the individual team members. This, in fact, will create a positive team synergy where the optimized performance allows the team to complete their projects within scope, on time and within budget. From the client’s perspective this, indeed, is a wise investment.

Take the time to evaluate the requirements and complete the gap analysis you will than purchase your project management software wisely. This, in turn, will yield measurable savings and efficiencies.