Q&A: Is Project Management Software for You?

diagramQ: I think my business would benefit from a project management software, but I'm not sure it's something we can afford. How much does project management software cost? I have a mid-sized business.

A: Thanks very much for your great question! Many business owners often find themselves in your exact position, wondering if a project management system will help them drive efficiency and productivity significantly enough to justify the costs of investing in new software and tools.

Fortunately, there are a diverse array of project management software options for business owners to consider, and many are quite affordable for any business size or budget. Software management software can range in price vastly (from as low as $19/month to $10,000 one-time installations) depending on the type of solution you choose.

The most affordable options are cloud-based solutions, and the more costly options are those including on-site hardware installation and management.

Cloud-Based Project Management Software

Cloud-based project management systems are a great option for small to mid-sized businesses that need a reliable solution that is both powerful and portable. Cloud-based systems are user-friendly and easy to update from all your portable devices such as a laptop, smart phone, or tablet. Cloud-based project management software providers typically charge an affordable, flat monthly fee for their service.
As you consider a cloud-based option, you’ll need to factor in how many users will need access so you can choose the best system for your company size. As a mid-sized business, you can expect to spend anywhere from $25 to $300 a month on your project management solution.

Installed, On-Site Project Management Software

If your company deals with large amounts of very sensitive data, then a cloud-based project management software may not be an option. In instances such as these, there are installed solutions that give you complete control of your systems and your data. This increases security, but the costs are much more significant to implement this type of solution and can run anywhere from $1,000 to $10,000.

Bonus Business Tip! Before you invest in a project management software, it is important that you assess your business needs and breakdowns in communication or organization within your company. Analyzing these key items will help you determine if a project management software will help or hinder your daily operations.

Trying to implement a project management system too early may actually cause confusion or extra, unnecessary work for your teams. However, waiting too long to invest in a quality project management software can also diminish the effectiveness and productivity of your business.

To help guide and inform your decision about whether it’s the right time to invest in project management software, you can ask yourself the following questions. If you answer yes to most of these questions, the time is right for you to consider project management software for your business.

• Are there frequent gaps in your business communications due to lost or misinterpreted information?
• Do your teams spend large amounts of time trying to organize, decipher, or locate important business information?
• Do you have problems with document version control?
• Has disorganized data caused you to miss important deadlines or client goals?
• Are your teams often confused about procedures, deadlines, or goals?

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