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Project management tools- what is it and do you need it?

Do you use a project management tool in your business? Maybe for yourself, or your clients? Or does the term fill you with dread as you aren’t totally sure what it refers to?


A project management tool is an app or programme which allows an individual or team to… manage projects! Or workload, or task lists - whatever you need really.


As a Virtual Assistant, you may find yourself juggling multiple client tasks and deadlines, along with your own business projects and plans, and it can get complicated and confusing to try and keep on top of them.


Does that sound like you?


If so, you might benefit from exploring some of the many project management tools that are out there. Sure, you could keep using multiple spreadsheets, notebooks, emails and other tools to keep on top of your task list, but there are some amazing free tools out there, which are easy to use and look pretty!


Here are some of the options I’ve used before and really liked:


Starting with my favourite, Trello:

Trello is recognised as one of the easiest project management tools to pick up and use for both business and personal use. Trello uses kanban style boards to manage projects (think of a pinboard or sticky notes!!). Each board has lists which you then pin cards to, which you can then add notes, deadlines, files, labels, checklists, tags - basically everything you need all in one place. Each board is shareable with collaborators, and the free version lets you have ten boards. I love it and use it daily - the calendar view option is also really useful. It’s my go to tool for teams of <5.


Another very popular project management tool for Virtual assistants is Monday.com due to the super user-friendly interface. You use a mixture of project boards, task boards, columns, and timelines to keep track of the status of a project. There are multiple ‘view’ options for your project boards so you are able to choose which works best for you and can change them accordingly. It also has built in time-tracking and reporting. Monday.com is what I would recommend for larger-scale teams and businesses. The free version gives you 1 board and 200 items.


Asana is another one I’ve used in the past, and I do really like it. You can create a project or client, assign a colour, and within that project/client, create tasks with deadlines, team members, attachments, comments, and subtasks. A team member can view all of their tasks across all projects, by deadline, or completion status. This system also provides you with multiple views to access your work and can be used to create detailed reports. It’s not as visually pleasing as Trello, but is really easy to use, and again the free plan offers pretty much everything you need as an individual.


One I've never used personally but many of my clients have, and the general consensus is it’s super easy to use. Just like the others, it lets you create tasks, allocate them, set deadlines, and communicate with collaborators. It’s really customisable, letting you build a dashboard with your desired at-a-glance information. You can also adapt your project fields to meet your needs. Again, the free plan offers pretty much everything you need as a solo VA.


Other project management tools you may like to explore include Smartsheet, Airtable, Notion, and many more!


If you are not sure which might be the best tool for your business, then feel free to get in contact with me today - though I will usually recommend Trello


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