Review: Project Management Software - InformationWeek

InformationWeek is part of the Informa Tech Division of Informa PLC

This site is operated by a business or businesses owned by Informa PLC and all copyright resides with them.Informa PLC's registered office is 5 Howick Place, London SW1P 1WG. Registered in England and Wales. Number 8860726.

IoT
IoT
Software // Enterprise Applications
News
3/10/2006
10:10 AM
50%
50%

Review: Project Management Software

A close look at four project management applications reveals they offer an abundance of features and capabilities.

We tested the software's ability to capture the scope of this project, maintain a history of revisions, and export information into an office suite so that management could be briefed. To keep it interesting, we represented several viewpoints--the organization affected by the move, help desk support, the IT group responsible for the transition, and two outside vendors responsible for Web services. We tried to capture everything from inception through post-shift service impact and make the software pass the information around.

FastTrack Schedule 9

FastTrack Schedule 9

(click image for larger view)


Product: FastTrack Schedule 9
Company: AEC Software
Price: Full
version: $349; upgrade: $149

FastTrack's just-the-facts, ma'am, presentation got our attention.
FastTrack Schedule 9 lives up to its name if what you need is a get-to-the-point, just-the-facts, ma'am, scheduler, report writer, and resource-tracking tool. This product is designed to quickly capture a project's dimensions and then present that picture cleanly, either with the built-in reporting tools or by integrating into Microsoft PowerPoint.

We'll be honest--when we first saw FastTrack 9, we were skeptical. We thought it might be a product designed for the working professional, not the project manager. Ten minutes later, the software was loaded, and in came our boss, wanting to know project status on an upcoming ISP move so he could brief the management team in half an hour. This was our first use of FastTrack 9, and the software made us eat our skepticism.

The project layout tools are intuitive, as are the resource allocation tools and reporting features. This made entering information easy and straightforward. Reporting has been a major focus of FastTrack since its inception, and it shows. Twenty minutes later, we had a moderately sized project entered, with resources assigned and a Gant chart printed, ready to brief. After the briefing with the boss, a follow-on presentation was needed to brief the management team; FastTrack 9's ability to integrate with Microsoft PowerPoint made preparing this briefing easy. We were converts.

Arena Solutions' PLM

Historically, project management has been about managing the process of production. The new kid on the block is the process of managing the product and its components--the micro view, if you will, of the project management world. The quality requirements for products and companies in today's environment are tough, and businesses are spending hundreds of thousands of dollars to get quality certified and even more to stay that way. This is where product life-cycle management fits in, allowing the paper trail for component-level quality control to be captured and made reportable for recertification inspections.

Product: Arena PLM

(click image for larger view)


Product: Arena PLM
Company: Arena Solutions
Price: Workgroup free for the first year; other versions start at $80 per month per user

Change management is where Arena PLM rocks.
Arena PLM delivers product life-cycle management in a hosted environment, allowing you to create and maintain your product drawings, and share drawings or selected parts of drawings, with suppliers. The program lets drawings be imported and revised, and relevant revision information captured and updated. Security is such that we could let our "supplier" see the whole drawing or restrict it down to individual components that are the supplier's responsibility. PLM maintains the working version of the product and allows capture of product revisions and history of component manufacture to document compliance for ISO 9001, ISO 13485, and related industry and government requirements.

We've worked in jobs where the quality-control pedigree of the part determines its acceptability for use. Maintaining and producing the history of the product in question always has been difficult, and this software product tackles that head on. Arena captured both a drawing and a parts list during initial setup. It supports several CAD standards and standard Comma Separated Value and text formats for import, so drawings can be imported to save time and effort. Arena also allows these drawings to be represented as lists of materials if a drawing isn't available. The program is flexible enough to allow component parts to be joined into assemblies and then to use these assemblies to build larger, more complex parts.

Change management is where Arena PLM really rocks. Want to make a hundred revisions to a part in a day; capture all the conversation around the revisions among the internal design team, the suppliers, and even the delivery vendors; and then be able to produce that lineage should ISO audit? No problem.



We welcome your comments on this topic on our social media channels, or [contact us directly] with questions about the site.
Previous
2 of 3
Next
Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
Comments
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View
ElenaH968
50%
50%
ElenaH968,
User Rank: Apprentice
6/26/2014 | 5:27:23 AM
re: Review: Project Management Software
Being launched in January 2014 Comindware Project had no chance to be listed in your valuable review. Meanwhile now it is worth of attention since it redefines communication about a project's progress with built-in team collaboration network, delivers automated priority-based planning, real-time Gantt-chart, allows to track availability of personnel easily and more.
cathe_co
50%
50%
cathe_co,
User Rank: Apprentice
5/28/2012 | 4:07:45 PM
re: Review: Project Management Software
It is worthwhile for you to take a look at OneDesk`s comprehensive project portfolio management tools. Secondly, OneDesk is the only product platform that offers seamless integration between core business processes such as help desk, requirements management, issue tracking and project management. More information can be found here: http://www.onedesk.com/feature...

Hope this helps,

Catherine
LAUTHIER000
50%
50%
LAUTHIER000,
User Rank: Apprentice
1/11/2012 | 4:21:06 PM
re: Review: Project Management Software
Project Monitor is a french tool for project management that I know well. The software is published by the company Virage Group. More information http://www.viragegroup.com.
This is a complete solution to manage projects by milestone, workpackages, tasks, budgets allowed, ressource activities, from reporting to consolidated information of sets of projects
JJAY000
50%
50%
JJAY000,
User Rank: Apprentice
10/5/2011 | 1:18:24 PM
re: Review: Project Management Software
I agree, Clarizen's software is fantastic. I have been using it to manage a number of new projects online, together with the rest of my team. Your existing company email accounts can also be integrated into Clarizen's software (very handy). Overall, the software is intuitive and has been very easy to use. We've tried a number of project management software solutions at my company previously, but Clarizen is the only one that really works for us.

Ilene Guttman
50%
50%
Ilene Guttman,
User Rank: Apprentice
10/5/2011 | 8:57:26 AM
re: Review: Project Management Software
You should also consider Clarizen's Project Management Software - http://www.clarizen.com/Projec...

The software is easy to use and its features help users get right down into the smaller details of project and work management, helping users work more efficiently by presenting more information in a way that is easy to digest. There is a free, 30-day trial.
Commentary
What Becomes of CFOs During Digital Transformation?
Joao-Pierre S. Ruth, Senior Writer,  2/4/2020
News
Fighting the Coronavirus with Analytics and GIS
Jessica Davis, Senior Editor, Enterprise Apps,  2/3/2020
Slideshows
IT Careers: 10 Job Skills in High Demand This Year
Cynthia Harvey, Freelance Journalist, InformationWeek,  2/3/2020
White Papers
Register for InformationWeek Newsletters
Video
Current Issue
IT Careers: Tech Drives Constant Change
Advances in information technology and management concepts mean that IT professionals must update their skill sets, even their career goals on an almost yearly basis. In this IT Trend Report, experts share advice on how IT pros can keep up with this every-changing job market. Read it today!
Slideshows
Flash Poll