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5 Project Management Mistakes That Can Harm Your Business Adjusting to the unexpected is good. Winging it from beginning to end is not.

According to market research by Technavio, the project management software market will grow steadily between 2017-2020, making it a $1 billion revenue channel globally. As businesses continue to adopt online modes of revenue generation, they seek scalable and agile business optimization solutions to create a robust operational infrastructure. Growth in this business sector has led to the rise of project management companies like Workfront, Basecamp and Atlassian, to name a few.

The biggest benefit of SaaS products is that they reduce operational time and enable business owners to focus on the core function of the business model. Features like project planning tools, task management, workflow management, and advanced reporting improve team collaboration and communication. However, despite the potential power of project management software, unless implemented properly, it can lead to increased operational bottlenecks and wasted resources.

Here are five project management mistakes that you should avoid if you want to take full advantage of this technology.

1. Lack of clear objectives and benchmarks.

SaaS products offer so many features it can be difficult to make it work for your business without clear objectives. Dig deeper and find the tools that are designed for your niche. Sign up for a trial version of a few products so you can find what works best for you. And when testing out project management software, use the DUMB rule; it should be Doable, Understandable, Manageable, and Beneficial.

Related: 3 Reasons Why You Should Go into Project Management

2. Lack of software usability training.

It's a mistake to expect your team members to learn how to use project management software all by themselves. Not everyone is technologically gifted. While these products usually host in-depth tutorials to help the user understand how the platform works, it is advisable to conduct team trainings to ensure each member is aware of their role in the CMS, how to track their own tasks, and how the software functions as a whole.

Training is crucial when the tool is being used for marketing or sales generation. A sales pipeline involves factors like maintaining updated contacts, handling email outreach, client negotiation, conversion, and client delivery. Training reduces the chance of mistakes when there are so many moving parts.

Related: 4 Product Management Mistakes That Will Drive You Crazy

3. Lack of project prioritization.

For may service-based companies, projects run concurrently and managing all of them without being overwhelmed isn't easy. Often, team members can get engrossed in a low-priority project, and the more important projects get pushed back. A project management CRM can allow the admin to prioritize projects in a way that is obvious to the entire organization.

One way to prioritize your projects is to simplify the workflow with smaller components. Workfront is a project management software that allows you to create project components based on the required work input. You can then move projects to a section to review and approve digital work and deliver the project through a client-centric interface. Users can also govern compliance workflows. It's like having different departments on the Cloud, and it is accessible by all team members with the appropriate permissions.

Remember to prioritize projects, always.

Related: The Simple Solution That Made This Company's Shipping Delays Disappear

4. Missing employee performance.

Even though using a project management tool makes sense for in-house and remote employees, there is an inherent performance reporting dilemma. Lack of clarity in filing performance reports or not knowing who is the right person to communicate with poses problems. The reporting dilemma can become a bottleneck, and an enterprise needs to recognize, assess, and reward employee productivity.

Solve this problem by using time tracking tools, which is useful for a remote team. Through embedded time tracking, it is possible to quantify the number of hours spent on a remote project. You can measure the number of tasks completed in a month, or track milestones as they are achieved. Create a performance scale at the beginning of every month and sync the performance measures with the project management tool, and evaluate every month end.

In the end, project management software allows you to move beyond traditional performance reporting systems.

Related: The Service That Helped an Ecommerce Site Fix Its Shipping Woes

5. Lack of communication.

Effective communication is at the core of any good project, and spending days without communicating with team members or clients is detrimental to progress and can be harmful to your business. Team members using project management CRM's shouldn't feel isolated just because they are using a cloud-based enterprise system. Simple project guidelines like deliverable reviews, regular status check-ins, and one-on-one team communication will help keep them motivated and involved on a daily basis.

Just signing up with a project management software won't provide you with miraculous results. It may simplify a lot of your processes, however, and as long as you steer clear from committing the above mistakes, you'll have a much better experience with CRM's.

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