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Project Management Software
For Microsoft Outlook, Web and Smartphone

Learn more about the most important features and how they help you achieve better work results.

Projektmanagement-Software umfasst eine große Bandbreite an Softwarelösungen, die Projektplaner, Führungskräfte und Teammitglieder im Projektmanagement unterstützen. Das Spektrum reicht von einfachen Aufgabenlisten bis hin zu umfassenden Projektmanagement-Suiten, die auf die Steuerung großer Projektlandschaften ausgelegt sind. Auch Standard-Bürosoftware kann Projektteams unterstützen - so werden beispielsweise Tabellenkalkulationsprogramme gerne im Projekt-Controlling eingesetzt.

Erfahren Sie in diesem Beitrag, wie Projektmanagement-Software definiert wird, wie Sie eine passende Softwarelösung für Ihre Anforderungen finden, was Gesamtlösungen auszeichnet und welche Vorteile eine integrierte Projektsoftware bietet.

Project Planning

Project Planning

Project management software helps you track project costs, returns and deadlines — this makes planning and coordination much easier.

Task Management Icon

Task Management

Organize tasks in free work packages and stay agile with the virtual Kanban-view — this way, team members always know what to do and when.

Document Management Icon

Document Management

Create new documents and interlink existing ones in the virtual project space — and staying organized becomes effortless.

Resource Management Icon

Resource Management

Track real-time capacity utilization in your teams and departments. This way, you can easily optimize the workload distribution.

A Brief Definition of Terminology

The umbrella-term project management software comprises any software category that is used by executives, project managers and team members to support them in the planning, execution, reporting and documentation of projects.

Some software products only cover certain parts of what project management entails, like time scheduling. There are also software solutions that combine all tasks that are relevant to project management. The following list gives an overview of the different types of programs that are generally subsumed under this software category:

  • Planning Software (Time planning and scheduling, incl. solutions that feature Gantt-charts and diagrams for visualizing project schedules)
  • Resouce Management Software (For planning and balancing of project resource capacities, often as part of an Enterprise Resource Planning-system (ERP))
  • Project Portfolio Management Software (Used to identify projects that have positive effects on the corporate value)
  • Controlling and Accounting Software (For project budgeting, reporting and accounting)
  • Documenten Management Systems
  • Task Management Software
  • Communication Software for teams

There are solutions in the market, that combine several or even all of the above mentioned features and aspects of project management in one single tool. They are what would be considered full-feature software solutions.

How to Find the Right Project Management Software — Learn More

How to Find the Project Management Software that is Best for You?

There is an abundance of project tools in the market, making the process to find the right software for your needs a little project in itself. Everyone who did only a quick online search might very well have felt a little overwhelmed at the wide range of solutions offered by various providers. With so many options available, how do you pick the one project software that best serves your and your project team's needs? Keep in mind, all throughout the decision making process, whichever tool you pick, it should be evaluated against whether or not it has the potential to help your team collaborate more efficiently. We compiled a step-by-step guide that helps you choosing the solution that best supports you and your team on the way to successful project delivery. 

1. Determine the Status Quo

Before researching project management tools, you should first define the current situation of project management in your company. Main questions to answer in this context are: How are projects currently being planned and managed? What business processes does project management currently entail and which ones should be improved for better delivery results and increased business productivity? Which aspects of the project management process should in the future be software supported?

Project Management Software Research Step 1: Determine the Status Quo

2. Conduct a User Survey

In order to find out what kind of support your team(s) needs most, it's best to ask those who are currently involved in projects. You should ask the future users of project management software to tell you about current challenges they face and describe cases from their project-based work. You want their backing for this undertaking from the start this will make the following implementation process far easier. Those responsible for selecting a software solution should then define a list of feature requirements based on the survey results. Experience shows that it is not recommendable to let the actual users compile the catalog of requirements — this way companies too often ended up choosing a unnecessarily complex and feature heavy solution.

Project Management Software Research Step 2: Conduct a User Survey

3. Assess Technical Pre-Requisites

The existing technical infrastructure is a significant aspect when it comes to choosing a new software; especially when it is intended to be used as a company-wide solution. Consult specialists from the IT department to clear questions like: Does our infrastructure and manpower allow for an on-premise project management software? Can we use a cloud-based project management solution? Which systems does our current IT infrastructure support?

Project Management Software Research Step 3: Assess the Technical Pre-Requisites

4. Start Researching Software Options 

The status quo analysis of how projects are currently being planned and managed as well as the definition of the IT infrastructure profile are solid grounds for starting a software research. Taking the time to go through steps 1 to 3 actually will help you save time in finding the best project management software for your needs. Based on the requirements catalog, your product search is much more targeted and efficient.

Project Management Software Research Step 4: Research Software Options

5. Test & Evaluate Software Options 

When you start browsing for project management software, you are offered a tremendous amount of solutions. Pick three to five tools that fit the previously defined specifications and put them to the test with sample projects. You can use real projects that you've been working on in the past or come up with testing scenarios based on your experience and cases the teams provided to you. The testing process should be supported by live software presentations from the provider — either in person or as a webdemo. Even if you are a well-versed software user, having a solution expert to demonstrate the most important features is of great benefit and helps you accelerate the "get-to-know-the-software"-process.

Project Management Software Research Step 5: Test & Evaluate Software Options

6. Ensure User-Friendliness & Usability 

A common mistake made when choosing a project management software is basing the decision solely on the feature range. One of the most important decisive factors regarding the successful implementation of a new software actually is its user-friendliness. Asking employees to get used to a new software at times can be rather challenging, even more so if the software in question is hard to grasp and difficult to use. Resistance against a new system has already frequently led to implementation failure. In fact, the Standish Group's Chaos Manifesto finds that almost 70 percent of all corporate projects to implement project management software fail because of user resistance.

Project Management Software Research Step 6: Check User-Friendliness & Usability

7. Estimate Implementation Expenditures 

While checking a software's user-friendliness you should at the same time assess what the potential implementation costs and training efforts are of the respective software solutions. The duration of the implementation process and the training of all the employees working with the software is an important expense factor. In this case, time really is money and only after implementation and training have been completed can you expect your team to work productively and efficiently with the new system.

Project Management Software Research Step 7: Estimate Implementation Expenditures

8. Short List the Favorit Software Options 

Steps 5 through 7 help you narrow down your list of potential software options to a maximum of two or three project software solutions. Contact the providers of the software systems that made it onto the short list and request a quote for the software package you need for you project and company size. If none of the initially selected solutions stand the testing process, simply go back to step 4 and do a research re-run with the newly gained insights.

Project Management Software Research Step 8: Define Short List of Software Options

9. Gain User-Acceptance 

Once you picked a project tool, you should focus on gaining and increasing acceptance for the new software among the users. Allow them to gain hands-on experience as soon as possible and help them understand how the software can support and simplify their everyday workload. If you want to implement the new software for an extended project team or company wide, it is advisable to define key users who recieve intensive software training. All the other software users can later refer to the key users if they have further questions on how to use the software in specific scenarios.

Project Management Software Research Step 9: Increase User-Acceptance

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Project management terms explained

Find definitions for the most important terms in the field of project management in the InLoox glossary.

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The project management software InLoox PM operates within Microsoft Outlook®, simplifying and combining the organization of projects, documents, resources and budgets.
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