Finishing projects according to schedule is vital for any tradesperson to stay successful. You want to be able to move between jobs seamlessly, and you’ll need a clear vision for how you will keep track of your progress to do that.
While you can always keep track of your progress by hand, there is a massive amount of software out there to help you track your progress. Read on for reasons you should go the digital route, what you should be looking for in software that keeps track of your projects’ progress, and some software recommendations:
Investing in project management software helps you keep track of all of your information in one place.
If you do a preliminary search online, you’ll see that progress tracking is usually included in general project management software. These are basically online programs that compile all of the tasks you need to accomplish as a business owner or project manager. Not only will you be able to track the progress of your project through a cloud-based system that stores all of your data, but you’ll also be able to handle other tasks like the flow of equipment, bid creation, logging work hours, and generating reports. If you can track progress while also getting these jobs done in one location, then that’s an investment worth making!
Digital systems let you organize, track, update, and share your information easily.
Now that you know why you should be using a project management software, here are three main characteristics you should look for in one:
1. First, you’ll want to make sure that you are able to track your tasks. This could come in the form of a schedule tracker, or really any form of gantt chart, like this one provided by user Chandoo.d on Wikimedia Commons:
It’s helpful when these tasks are customizable, so you can organize them by job category, team, or location. This should also allow you to see when the task is due and when it was completed.
2. Second, make sure that the system you choose provides real-time updates. You want your crew to be able to report to you as quickly as possible, especially if there is an issue in completing a certain project. Easy-to-use communication tools should be integrated into the software, so that you don’t have to use multiple apps to communicate.
3. Third, make sure that you can share information across your entire business. Most cloud-based software will allow you to exchange spreadsheets, contracts, and other important documents on one centralized program.
There are many programs you can choose from that work for your business.
As we mentioned earlier, there's plenty of software programs for you to choose from to track the progress of your projects.
If you’re specifically working in construction, here are three solid options that come with all of the features we mentioned earlier like customizable tracking, real-time updates, and sharing abilities:
For any other tradesworkers, Monday.com is a great service that offers many of the same features. Monday.com lets you organize projects that you’re actively working on, categorize them by team, urgency, and location, and lets you communicate with other team members all on the same platform. The rates start at $8/month.
Always remember: progress is power. The better you’re able to track your progress, the better you’ll see how your business grows and find your measures for success.
Trades.org is here to help your business succeed. Our tools will help you save time and money, understand the ins and outs of business management and spend your days providing exception services to your customers rather than marketing and office tasks. We’ve got your back with practical help managing and growing your business.