Project management tools

5 minutes

This is the area that can have the most impact on your business (whether you are remote or not). It’s important to bring clarity to the chaos, which starts with project management. As you move from office to home, now is a good time for your team to review and reevaluate your business efforts and roll out a new plan. Tracking and organizing objectives and initiatives related to this plan is imperative - whether you are a one-man show or working with a team. Thus, finding a project management tool to organize your new business plan and put it to action will help keep you moving forward.

There are tons of amazing project management apps out there, but in this course we will focus on Trello - an app that has been used by the ZOOMcatalog team for many years.

Trello

Trello is a lightweight project management tool that helps businesses keep track of tasks, objectives and goals, manage in-house work, and organize overall business efforts. It’s an easy starting point for any project, as it is intuitive and simple. Here is a breakdown of the features that makes Trello a powerful project management tool:

Boards

Think of a “board” as a list of lists. You can create one board for your company, or use multiple boards for different teams and projects. Inside the board, you can set up a number of “lists” to make up a workflow. Imagine your board is a master directory of everything you are working on.

Lists

As mentioned, inside your board you can create lists. You will use these lists to track the status of a task. For example, your lists could be called “pending”, “in progress”, and “complete”. This allows you to not only track everything you are working on in one place, but also lets you track how far along you are with each task. You can move the tasks inside your board between the lists as you work on them.

Cards

For each task you will create a card. Cards are very powerful as they can contain everything you need to get a task done, including a description, attachments, links, due dates, and more. Additionally, if you are working with a team, you can invite and add members to a card so they can track progress, collaborate, add notes, and ask questions.

Here is a visual of how you can set up a simple board. We recommend starting simple to get familiar with the tool, and expanding from there once you get the hang of it.


How the ZOOMcatalog team uses Trello

While there are tons of great project management tools out there, we have settled on Trello. We use Trello boards to track our tasks related to current objectives. Each team (sales, marketing, development, customer support) has their own board that consists of lists. When a new task comes up we create a card for it, and move the card through the workflow as it is in progress. We are also able to communicate with each other on each task, add attachments, and invite the necessary team members to collaborate. We also create boards for larger customer projects, and invite customers to the board so they can track progress and get updates.

Here is an example of the lists we use in our marketing board:

  • Ideas - Any ideas we have go in this column. Anyone on the team can add a card for an idea they have. This list provides the marketing team with a place to brainstorm and log ideas.

  • To do - When we decide to move forward with an idea, we move it to this column. This list serves as a backlog of tasks that need to be completed.

  • In progress - We try to limit the number of in-progress cards to three or less. Once we get started on a task, the card moves from “to do” to this column.

  • Ready for review - When the task is complete, all related links and attachments are added to this card. Someone is assigned to review and approve the task. Once approved, it is moved to the next column.

  • Ready to publish - Any cards in here are ready to be released, whether it means posting it to the blog, or sending an email campaign.

  • Complete - Once the task is approved, released, and complete, this column is its final destination. Having all completed cards in this column is a great way for us to look back for reference if we have a similar task come up.

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