You’ve got a project to do. But who is going to execute that plan and turn the abstract into the practical? Your project team: the most valuable resource for your project.
If you’ve been tasked with a project and think you can do it on your own, then you’re in for problems. No matter the size of the project, there are schedules and resources to manage, which is a full-time job. Then there are the people who take the various tasks and see them to completion: they need managing too.
Project management requires a variety of roles, and each has their own responsibilities so that everything can progress as smoothly as possible. Therefore, before you begin that project, take a moment to read about the different project roles and their responsibilities. As an added bonus, we’ll detail the tools that can help each of those roles be more productive.
While there might be a more superior position, like executive sponsor, for most projects there is a project sponsor sitting on top of the project roles pyramid. This is the person who is deeply invested in the project and its success.
The project sponsor is in direct communication with the client or customer who is the reason the project has been initiated. They tend to monitor the budget and hold the purse strings of the project. They also have the final say on making any project decisions, which includes resources.
The project manager reports to the project sponsor and helps with the project charter, which is a statement of scope, objectives and people involved in the project.
The project manager is the one who is responsible for the project. They plan it, develop a schedule, assemble a project team and manage their workload throughout the project’s life cycle. Project managers are also responsible for managing risk and the budget.
The project manager is the one who drives the project forward, but they’re not working independently. They are also responsible for reporting on progress to the project sponsor and any stakeholders who also have a vested interest in the project.
The project manager is the point person for vendors and independent contractors, creating contracts for them and managing their services. You can think of the project manager as a bridge that connects the executives or client to the project team working on the project deliverables.
Often there is a go-between that helps facilitate the project manager’s job in terms of project operations. They will work with the project team and are especially helpful when there are remote teams working in different time zones on the same project. The project coordinator helps to keep the operations running smoothly for the project manager and the project team.
Project Management Office (PMO)
Sometimes an organization will have a segment devoted to developing a set of standards and policies to govern their project management and to make sure those standards and policies are being followed. This tends to occur only in larger organizations, which might not always apply.
However, if it does exist the PMO will decide on the processes used in a project and how to follow them. The PMO also will archive the project for historical data, collecting and analyzing its results. Project managers are supported by the PMO.
Project Team Members
These are the people who execute the tasks assigned to them by the project manager. There can be a team lead, who manages the team, who the team reports to and who in turn reports on their progress to the project manager. But in general, all team members are on equal footing.
The project team members have skills relevant to the project and can work with varying degrees of autonomy depending on the methodology used in managing the project. They are responsible for executing their tasks and for updating their statuses to the project manager in order to track the overall progress of the project.
How ProjectManager.com Helps Everyone on Your Team
The project team needs project tools to help them work more effectively and track progress. ProjectManager.com is award-winning project management software that is packed with features that help everyone working on the project.
Let’s start with the project sponsor. They’re interested in how the project is progressing against where it should be in the project plan. When team members update their statuses on ProjectManager.com that data is instantly reflected throughout the software.
Project sponsors aren’t interested in the nitty-gritty, so a real-time dashboard gives them a bird’s-eye view of the project’s progress as it’s happening.
Project managers use the dashboard, too, of course. But they need more detailed information, which is where ProjectManager.com’s project reporting comes in handy. Reports can be customized to get just the data a project manager wants, or they can drill down for more information.
Reports help project managers monitor their actual progress against planned progress. ProjectManager.com even calculates the amount of days the project is ahead or behind schedule.
Gantt Charts for Planning & Scheduling
When it comes to planning and scheduling the project, project managers will find the online Gantt chart tool especially helpful. Task lists on spreadsheets are easy to upload and can open up in ProjectManager.com as a new project. Then just add the task duration and it populates a timeline.
From here, the project manager can make milestones, assign team members tasks and even attach relevant documents and images for direction. ProjectManager.com has unlimited file storage.
Resource Management Calendars
Of course, project managers need more that just tools to monitor the project. They need to get in there and reallocate resources to keep things moving smoothly. ProjectManager.com has tools to manage tasks and resources to see if team members have enough work. Reallocate their workload from the workload page.
Multiple Project Views for Team Members
The team works differently than managers and shouldn’t have to use the same tools. They can view the project in any of four different ways. The Gantt chart might be too much information, so they can see their tasks on a calendar or a task list. There’s also the kanban board, which is a visual workflow tool that focuses on continuous delivery. This reduces wasted work time and increases efficiency.
Whether the task is on a Gantt chart, task list or kanban board, the data is the same and all offer collaborative tools. Team members can comment, no matter where they are or what time it is, and dialogue with other team members. If they need to bring in someone else from the project team into the conversation, they can simply tag them and they’re immediately notified by email, keeping every project role in the loop.
ProjectManager.com has tools for every project role. Cloud-based software means ProjectManager.com is reflecting the actual project as it is happening, so better decisions can be made. No matter what your project role is there are features that can help you do your job better. See for yourself by taking this free 30-day trial today.