Task management software is an effective tool for individuals and enterprises to track and complete daily tasks. It allows users to create to-do lists, assign tasks, collaborate, set deadlines, and monitor progress.
Setting up a task management tool for your team isn't about micromanaging employees, but providing them with better tools for managing productivity. These tools help reduce the time needed to complete assignments and maintain focus.
In this article, we’ll break down task management software and identify exactly what to look for in a task manager.
What is task management software?
Task management software is a digital solution that helps individuals and teams efficiently organize, track, and complete tasks. It provides a centralized platform for creating, assigning, prioritizing, and monitoring tasks throughout their lifecycle. By using task management tools, people and organizations can improve workflow, productivity, and project execution.
Consider the following scenario: You need to create a social media post for an upcoming campaign.
Using a task management software application, it would play out like this:
- Step 1: Receive a new task to create social media posts for an upcoming campaign.
- Step 2: Review the task details, including the campaign objectives, target audience, and content guidelines provided within the task manager tool.
- Step 3: Create a checklist of subtasks required for the social media content creation, such as brainstorming ideas, creating visuals, writing captions, and scheduling posts.
- Step 4: Assign deadlines to each subtask based on the campaign timeline and prioritize them by importance or due date.
- Step 5: As you work on each subtask, update the task management software to reflect the progress. This allows any relevant team members or the project manager to track or collaborate with you when necessary.
- Step 6: Collaborate with other designers or writers for your social posts using a centralized location for all task-related files, images, or documents.
- Step 7: Finally, you upload the completed task free of errors and with no missing instructions.
A task manager serves as a sort of digital assistant, allowing you to stay organized and helps guarantee you don’t miss any necessary steps.
Is task management and project management the same?
Task and project management are related concepts but differ in scope and focus. While both involve managing work and achieving desired outcomes, they have distinct characteristics.
- Focuses on individual tasks within a project.
- Breaks down complex projects into smaller, manageable tasks.
- Ensures efficient and timely completion of tasks for project success.
- Oversees the entire project from start to finish.
- Defines project goals and develops a plan.
- Allocates resources, manages risks, and coordinates tasks and team members.
Key differences between task and project management:
- Scope: Task management focuses on specific individual tasks, while project management covers the entire project.
- Complexity: Task management involves executing single tasks, while project management involves strategic planning and coordination.
Both task management and project management software are crucial for successfully executing projects efficiently. As a result, organizations commonly employ task management software as part of their broader project management approach.
How does a task manager benefit a business?
Implementing task-managing software can bring numerous benefits to a business, enhancing collaboration, communication, and productivity and reducing operational costs. Let's delve into how companies benefit from using a task manager.
- Improved collaboration: Provides a central place for team members to share and collaborate on projects. They significantly improve communication and coordination, reducing the risk of errors.
- More effective communication: Improves communication between team members. Reduces unnecessary emails, phone calls, and meetings.
- Productivity increases: Boost productivity by helping team members prioritize individual tasks, set deadlines, and track progress.
- Operational cost reduction: Reduce operating costs by streamlining processes and eliminating manual tracking. Task managers free up time and resources for other tasks.
A study by Motion found knowledge workers spend 58% of their time coordinating work instead of doing work. A good task manager simplifies and automates that process to free up several hours each day to spend productively.
To achieve these benefits, a task manager must have a long list of advanced features and capabilities.
What features does a good task manager need to have?
Good task management software is user friendly yet offers a range of advanced features that enhance organization, collaboration, and productivity. These are the thirteen key capabilities to consider when choosing task management software.
Collaboration is vital for task management and successful task completion in team-based environments. Therefore, good task management software should facilitate cooperation between team members through essential features for communication such as file sharing and message boards.
Motion offers comprehensive collaboration features such as:
- Assign tasks to team members.
- Leave comments for discussions or clarifications.
- Share files associated with the tasks.
- Set task dependencies and priorities
- Automatic notifications and reminders.
- Real-time progress updates
- An activity feed timeline
This makes it easy for teams to work together effectively and efficiently without any miscommunication.
Scheduling and planning
A task manager should provide robust scheduling capabilities, allowing users to create and assign tasks with specific deadlines. Additionally, it should offer a visual and customizable calendar view that lets users see their assignments, task status, deadlines, and schedule at a glance. Motion excels with its intuitive calendar feature, providing a clear overview of tasks and deadlines.
Additionally, Motion has the world's only AI-powered intelligence calendar.
Automation and AI
Automation and artificial intelligence (AI) capabilities significantly improve task management processes and efficiency. Task automation features automate repetitive tasks, such as task assignments or notifications, saving time and reducing manual effort. However, not all task management software can provide these advanced features.
Motion is the only task manager that leverages advanced AI and machine learning algorithms throughout the platform.
Motion uses AI to help you stay organized, productive, and on track by:
- Automating mundane tasks so you don't have to do them yourself.
- Sending you reminders and notifications so you never miss a deadline.
- Suggesting and prioritizing tasks so you can focus on the most important things.
- Rescheduling your calendar automatically
These innovative features help businesses streamline processes, improve client collaboration, and boost efficiency.
It's helpful to break complex tasks into smaller, manageable subtasks. Therefore, good task management software should support subtask management, enabling users to create and organize subtasks within more extensive tasks.
Motion users can create hierarchical task structures and assign subtasks to team members. This feature tracks progress and ensures all necessary work is done for each task and subtask.
Different project views improve task management and project tracking. For example, Gantt charts, Scrum, and Kanban boards are popular Agile frameworks that show task progress from different perspectives. Therefore, task management software should include the option to customize views to accommodate different project management styles.
Motion offers several Agile frameworks allowing teams to see tasks in views such as a timeline, list, gantt charts, or board-based view. This flexibility gives users ultimate control to choose the project view that best suits their preferences.
Accurately tracking time is vital for measuring productivity, assessing task completion, and managing resources efficiently. Therefore, good task management software should have time-tracking features, enabling users to track time spent on each task or subtask.
Motion provides comprehensive time-tracking capabilities, allowing users to log and track time on specific tasks. Logging time entries helps evaluate project progress and gives valuable insights into individual and team productivity. By analyzing time data, businesses can identify improvement areas, streamline workflows, and allocate resources efficiently.
Advanced client access
Businesses that work closely with clients or external stakeholders often need to provide them with access to project information and updates. This allows clients or stakeholders to stay informed about the progress and developments of the project.
Task management software with advanced client access features can help businesses by providing limited client access. This security feature enables clients to view task progress, leave comments, and access essential files. Moreover, it's critical in safeguarding data and protecting intellectual property.
Data security is of utmost importance when using task management software. It involves handling sensitive information about projects, tasks, and team members. Therefore, good task management software should prioritize data security and take strong measures to protect confidential data from unauthorized access, breaches, or loss. Businesses should consider the following features when selecting task management software:
- User access controls
- Secure data storage
- Data backup and recovery
- Compliance with data protection regulations
File and Document Management
Efficient file and document management capabilities are essential for task management software. It allows team members to attach, store, and collaborate on files and documents directly within the software. With this feature, files related to specific tasks can be easily accessed, shared, and modified by authorized team members. It eliminates the need for separate file-sharing platforms such as Google Drive, or email attachments, streamlining communication and ensuring that everyone has the latest version of relevant files.
Reporting and Analytics
Teams require detailed custom reports to gain insights into task progress, team productivity, and project performance. By tracking milestones, identifying bottlenecks, analyzing time allocations, and measuring team performance, data-driven decisions can be made to optimize workflows for greater efficiency.
Motion offers built-in reporting tools that allow users to generate customizable reports. These reports include charts, graphs, and key metrics, providing valuable information for analysis and decision-making.
Templates and Workflows
Templates and workflows are valuable features in task management software as they streamline repetitive processes and ensure consistency across complex projects.
With Motion, it's possible to create customized templates, task lists, and pre-defined workflows that users can leverage to create tasks, assign responsibilities, and set deadlines quickly. These task and project templates and workflows serve as a foundation, reducing manual effort and providing a structured approach to task allocation and execution.
A good task management software should be cross-platform, meaning it works seamlessly across different operating systems like Windows, macOS, and Linux. This ensures that team members can access and manage tasks from their preferred devices, whether it's a desktop computer, laptop, or tablet. Cross-platform compatibility promotes collaboration and flexibility, allowing teams to work together efficiently regardless of their device preferences or operating systems.
In today's world, a good task manager tool should probably have a task management app. With mobile accessibility, team members can stay connected and manage tasks on the go, whether they're in the office, attending meetings, or working remotely. In addition, it enables real-time updates, task tracking, and collaboration, empowering teams to be productive and responsive even when they are not at their workstation.
Choosing the best task management software
Selecting the right task management software is essential for individuals and organizations aiming to enhance their organization, focus, and productivity. Motion stands out as an outstanding and comprehensive tool in this pursuit, offering a comprehensive range of robust task management capabilities.
With a proven track record and the trust of over 30,000 users worldwide, Motion stands as a reliable and trusted partner. Embracing Motion as your task manager can unlock efficient coordination, seamless collaboration, and cohesive task management. Experience the benefits of Motion for yourself, and start your free trial today!