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How the project managers role has canged with online project management -Part I

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by: WhitneyBischof588
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Date: Sun, 29 Jan 2012 Time: 10:34 AM

As usual the project manager is the major contact in all project-related communications. This directly influences the efficiency of the team, as well as the manager's own productivity. Nowadays, many companies still utilize Microsoft Excel spreadsheets or traditional project management applications, like Microsoft Project, for tracking their projects as well as e-mailing text documents and spreadsheets is still very popular, regardless of its abundant shortcomings.

E-mail is a closed communication medium, and many companies confirm that it does a poor job of capturing and sharing knowledge. For example, if you e-mail a document to two people, you then have three versions of this document to manage, merge, and differentiate. It is difficult to work on these document s concurrently. This is not the only problem. Knowledge is buried in e-mails, as it is available only to the sender and the recipients, so all the other team members cannot benefit from it. For example, if an employee e-mails a status update to his manager, the change will only be seeable to other people after the manager manually updates the schedule. This produces unnecessary work and delays the exchange of information. There is little visibility and mastery above the project if all of the information is submerged in large number of e-mails occupying in employees' mailboxes. The list of disadvantages can advance on.

Accepted online project management tools are not targetted on collaboration, either. They were customarily designed with the top-down approach in mind and are not meant for open collaboration. These tools are focused on a project manager and put him the core element of the project communications. He first has to pull facts out of employees through meetings and e-mails, then put them into a file and communicate the project plan to upper management and clients. The process is then duplicated each time something changes. The project manager also needs to play the role of an alarm clock, reminding employees of their deadlines and overdue tasks. The whole process turns out to be a time-consuming effort, and it results in a heavy burden for a project manager. The amount of routine work frequently does not leave the manager time for leadership.

Cloud computing technologies actuate innovations in online project management. These innovations have become known as Online Project Management with Cloud Connect . Essentially software as a service Saas but with effective business tools that help your business compete and grow. These terms accent a new approach to project management, characterized by a dramatic shift towards having collaboration as the focal point of managing projects. The new-generation cloud computing tools takes care of the routine part of a project manager's work: reminding team members about deadlines, merging status updates into a single plan, and communicating changes. These new tools also let people collaborate and share information easily. The role of the project manager is changing; he is becoming a project visionary, instead of a taskmaster. Online project management tools give him more amplitude to be a project leader.

Continued in Part II

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