Asana – for project management
I’ve been using Asana for project management for years now. Originally one of my team members found it to help us schedule and manage our growing work load of projects from multiple departments. Rather than scrambling to find briefs and project details across multiple email conversations with different people, Asana centralises tasks, documents and conversations together so the information is together and able to viewed by all.
You can get a quick overview on progress without having to interrupt other team members.
It’s easy to create projects, invite collaborators, add deadlines, break projects into small manageable tasks and to delegate or assign.
Once you’ve created your projects and then tasks under subheadings you can even use Harvest (my preferred time tracking app) to keep track of the time spent on them.
Best of all it’s free to get started.
Even though I work on my own I still use it to break down projects into smaller parts. It’s helps me to budget my time and forecast a little better and then document all the little steps so that I don’t get lost or lose track of the big picture. It’s particularly helpful in organising my marketing calendar.
It’s free to use for up to 15 people so great for small businesses. They’ve provided lots of different examples on ways to use Asana in different industries.
If you’re a fan of Gantt chants. Say goodbye to Excel and use the Asana plugin app Instagantt.
My favourite feature has to be the celebrations! Under your profile and settings click display and select show occasional celebrations upon task completion. They don’t show every time but if you complete a few tasks in a row you might get to see a unicorn, yeti, narwhal or phoenix fly by.
Harvest – for time sheets
I’ve always found keeping a timesheet such a chore especially when switching between projects.
Harvest has been a lifesaver. It’s simple and easy to use.
I use the chrome extension and the app on my phone to start a timer related to my client and project. I’ve created subheadings for projects like marketing and design when I start the timer I make a few notes on what I’m doing to include in my invoices. Especially when tasks are outside the scope of the original project in response to client emails.
My favourite features are the ability to provide estimates, create different rates for different tasks and set budgets for projects. It’s made time keeping incredibly easy and integrates with my accounting software Xero.
You can send invoices straight from Harvest but I normally copy mine into Xero for one last check.
Harvest is free to get started. It costs $12 per month (USD) for unlimited clients and projects. Follow this link to get $10 off your first month.
Next on my list to try is Trello for keeping track of ideas and content marketing ideas. Do you have any productivity apps you absolutely love?