Thursday, May 22, 2014

What is best free online project management software?

1.     Bitrix24
This is my favorite free online project management software at the moment, way ahead of the competition. The best way to describe Bitrix24 is this. Imagine if Basecamp bought Dropbox, Skype, Salesforce and SharePoint – that’s Bitrix24. Ability to have team chat, videoconferencing, shared calendars and group document management inside your project management platform is brilliant. Gantt charts are a big plus. Also, I like the fact that you have two options with Bitrix24 - cloud based or self hosted project management software that you can host on your server. If you choose the latter option, you can source code to play with as well. The free version gets you 12 users, unlimited projects/tasks/subtasks and 5GB worth of cloud document storage. 
2.     Freedcamp
As the name suggests, Freedcamp is a free Basecamp alternative. I am not a big Basecamp fan, I think that their approach to online project management is outdated, and you see this immediately in Freedcamp’s design. If you do, however, like Basecamp, do give Freedcamp a close look. Do take note of the fact that backups in Freedcamp are paid.
3.     Asana
Asana’s popularity has exploded recently and deservedly so. It’s a slick, no frills alternative to Basecamp that sticks to tasks only (no group chat, no video, no proper document management as in Bitrix24).  The original free Asana plan included 30 free users, but it was cut in half shortly (i.e. 15 users). Each extra 15 users will set you back $50/mo. One thing that I don’t like about Asana is that they do not offer a self-hosted version of their project management software and explicitly stated that they don’t ever plan to, so you become their cloud hostage for life. Not that I think Asana is going bankrupt any time soon, given their Facebook heritage. 
4.     Trello
Trello is a good choice if you use Kanban for managing tasks and projects. Trello is very simple, which is its strongest point and its weakest one. On the plus side, people pick up Trello very fast and it spreads like wild fire. However, as soon as you start working on a project with even minimal level of complexity where you need Gantt charts, resource management, Trello becomes immediately inadequate.
5.     GanttProject
GanttProject is project management software from the 90s. That may sound bad, but there are people who are used to PC only software (which is what GanttProject is) and aren’t comfortable with cloud, smartphones and the entire consumerization trend. It features Gantt, PERT and Resource load charts. The latest news are from 2012, so it may no longer be developed/supported.

Did I miss any good tools? Send me your favorite FREE project management software.

Saturday, May 10, 2014

HR Tools - Social Document Collaboration

#5 - Social Document Collaboration

Document collaboration tools are among the most widely used in the modern social HR software arsenal. Gone are the days when the only choice you had was ugly (and expensive) SharePoint. Most modern document collaboration solutions work in a cloud, are as easy to use as Dropbox and are free or very inexpensive. The following document collaboration features are available in Bitrix24

Multiuser online document editing
Online editor in Bitrix24

Online multiuser document editing is one of the popular ways to collaborate in real time. Not only all changes are instantly visible to all participants of the process, you don’t have to have pricey MS Office installed on your PC in order to work with documents online.

Group file sharing and synchronization

Bitrix24 lets you share files with people inside and outside your company in Dropbox-like manner, including password-protected and time-restricted file sharing. Bitrix24.Drive allows managing and synchronization of workgroup and company files between the local PC and Bitrix24 cloud account, meaning as soon as you add a new file or edit an existing one, it becomes available both in cloud and on PC of every group member who has Bitrix24.Drive enabled and is authorized to access the document. iOS and Android mobile devices are supported as well.

Document approval workflows
Visual document workflow designer

Getting documents approved or revised or rejected is part of most collaboration routines. Bitrix24 allows creating custom document approval workflows including but not limited to simple approval, majority vote, expert opinion, two or multi stage approval, mandatory reading and mandatory mutual approval.

Free document collaboration is available in Bitrix24 for groups of up to 12 people. The free account includes 5 GB worth of online storage.

Social HR Explained - Social Intranet
Social HR Explained - Employee Self Service
Social HR Explained - United Communications
Social HR Explained - Mobile HRMS
Social HR Explained - Social Task Management
Social HR Explained - Social Document Collaboration