Per Wising, Projectplace’s joint head of R&D, takes a look in this In the spotlight interview at the challenges IT managers face today and the tools they can offer employees to empower them to work more efficiently and rewarding – whether they share the same desk or work on opposite sides of the globe.
What sort of challenges do IT managers face when introducing new collaboration software or project management tools?
First, due to the varying levels of IT knowledge throughout most companies, overly complex tools can mean having to train most employees in how to use a new tool, which is bound to limit uptake quite a bit. The fact is that people seldom embrace tools that are difficult to get a handle on – just think of the simplicity of Twitter or Facebook, for example. Also, complex tools often require physical implementation in the shape of specific software or appliances, which can be costly, time consuming and inconvenient to install company-wide.
What should IT managers look for in a project management or collaboration solution to ensure these challenges are addressed?
Any new tool needs to be easy and intuitive to use and available instantly, at the click of a mouse or swipe of a finger. It also needs to fit into a company’s existing IT environment, in other words, work seamlessly with existing technology to keep set-up costs down. These days, cloud-based collaboration software are the only way to go. They enable mobility and ensure all projects are kept up to date in real time, regardless of device. Also, because any cloud-based tools sit outside a business’s firewall, this reduces the risk of implementation hassles.
How important is mobility when looking at collaboration software?
Mobility is essential. Increasingly, with their flexible working lifestyles, staff will come to the IT manager and demand the ability to access documents anytime, anywhere. They also want to be able to know exactly what’s happening on different projects at all times – wherever they might be. That’s why you need a tool that has mobility built in.
What about sensitive data and security?
Data security is what’s keeping IT managers up at night at the moment, due to many high-profile security breaches, like this and this. You need a solution that gives you peace of mind – one that has top-level encryption at its core, and that has been recognised as offering the highest levels of enterprise-grade security by a third party. Otherwise, you might jeopardise valuable intellectual property or put customers’ personal data at risk – both of which can have disastrous consequences.
How do you ensure everyone’s application is up to date?
By using a cloud-based project management and collaboration software, you can ensure that users are always accessing the latest version. No solution worth its salt requires manual updates!
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