Posts Tagged ‘timesheets’

Work better with Podio

There’s a new trend hitting the markets – Project Management Software. Though some of them have been around since quite some time, the last couple of years has seen a sudden growth in the launch of online software that are aimed at helping organizations better connect and structure their work. And since the competition in the field is growing, each new day we come across a new Project Management tool that has something different and additional as compared to its competitors.

podio

Take the example of Podio. On first look, Podio seems to be just another project management tool offering creation of projects, managing timesheets, sharing work details etc. However, as you begin exploring the tool and go through its features in detail, you discover, that it in fact has many layers packed inside it that give it albeit only a slight, yet noticeable edge over its competition. So let’s check out this online project management software today and see how much water it holds.

Podio – A fresh way to collaborate and organize

Podio works on a very simple methodology – everyone should know what they’re doing and should have the means to take responsibility for their job. So basically, its all about transparency, minimal hierarchy and peer recognition. Podio promises to promotes these beliefs to improve work, everyday. They follow the practice of collaboration and empowerment over command and control. With Podio, every member of the team has complete freedom to work they way he/she wants to. So if you’re a team leader or manager, you don’t have to bother with assigning tasks and letting people know what they’re supposed to do. Instead discuss the larger picture with them and allow them to work the way they want to. All the stuff you wish to put up somewhere for your team to see, you can put on Podio. That way, your team has more room for creativity and productivity to flow in. Well, the thought is nice actually!

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Let’s take a brief overview of Podio’s features:

  • Everything related to one project on one page (called an Item); this includes all the work right from completing a design for the project to closing a sales lead. This makes collaboration easier and transparent.
  • All information on the project page is updated in real time; attaching files, viewing statuses and leaving feedback and suggestions through comments is as easy as clicking.
  • Variety of views supported for each project from simple tables to dynamic cardboards. You can choose the view that best visualizes your work.
  • Create reports that keep you updated on your progress as well as the project’s so you can focus on just your responsibilities or see the overall progress of your team.
  • Track your customers and organize your team with Podio as your customizable CRM.
  • Podio can integrate seamlessly with Dropbox, Google Drive, Evernote and more to be the one platform that ties all your team’s work together.
  • Podio helps foster a more friendly team environment by making communication more streamlined and reducing internal emailing.
  • You can use Podio in your web browser or an Android or iOS device.
  • It offers a full, open API to allow you to extend Podio yourself.
  • It’s simple drag-and-drop interface gives users complete flexibility without the need of coding.

The best part about Podio is its collaboration with Citrix. Being a trusted name in project management and collaboration circles, joining hands with Citrix gives Podio a trusty feel.

How it works

To start working on Podio just sign up for free through the link given on the homepage. Once you’ve confirmed your email address, you’ll be taken straight to the Welcome page where you need to fill in details about your company and your team members (email addresses only). After this, you’ll be redirected to a page where you can create Workspaces according to different teams or departments or different locations in your company. The concept of Workspace is somewhat similar in scope to Java Eclipse IDE.

Podio creates 3 default workspaces for you to start with; these include “Project Management”, “Intranet” and “Sales Management”. Each workspace includes some Apps that Podio sets up for you. These Apps are nothing but templates for creating and structuring any work activity like meeting, deliverables etc. All such activities are called Items in Podio. Items are basically super-smart documents that organize your work and get things done.

Once you’re through with the introductions to everything, you can get straight to work. You’ll be taken to the Project Management page of the tool where you can start Creating Projects and associated Items. Create Reports and Views for the project or break up the workload into Deliverables. Setup meetings and create Activities – in short, just get straight to business.

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Pros VS Cons

Podio seems to be a fairly competent tool with quite a lot of features. So naturally, it has a lot of plus points associated with it:

  • Better project management
  • Collaboration and sharing work is easier
  • The concept of Workspaces is unique to a project management tool
  • Simple interface
  • Impressive feature set
  • Available online so omnipresent
  • Benefit of trust (the Citrix factor)

However, there are some areas where there could be improvements:

  • It seems like a lot to take in at first
  • The pricing could be a little steep for small organizations so it’s basically suited for large businesses.
  • Work, collaborate and manage projects better with @podio podio.com/ via @supermonitoring

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To sum it up

With room for Project Management, CRM, Social Intranet, Workflow Management, Event Management, Team and Email Management and lots more, Podio sure is one tool that’s worth checking out. So if you have the pocket for it, don’t think too much. Signup and you won’t be disappointed.

Track your work time and more in a few clicks with Harvest

In every organization there are a zillion trivial tasks associated with the core work; work force management, sales, human resources and what not. While most of these tasks are the organization’s headache, there’s one activity that takes up much of the employees’ and employer’s time and is often a boring but necessary chore. We’re talking about none other than work time tracking.

If you’ve ever worked with a time tracking tool you know that creating user stories, assigning them to employees and subsequent filling in of data by the employees is a rather lengthy procedure and often ends up in wastage of crucial working hours. Having an automatic tool that’s easy to understand, use and maintain is the need of the hour. Enter – Harvest!

harvest

Harvest – Time Tracking was never this easy!

Harvest is an online time tracking tool that’s fast gaining momentum. An attractive user interface, easy to use modules and an almost absent learning curve make this tool the optimum choice most corporates are turning to when it comes to work time management.

So what makes it worth all the hype? Here is a short list of its features:

  • Start-Stop Timers
    Harvest gives people the option to enter their work time manually or simply start the timer at the beginning of an activity and stop it at the end – with just a click. Neat, simple and quick!
  • Omni-access
    Since it is an online tool, you can track time using Harvest through Mac, PC, iPhone or any Android device, anywhere, anytime.
  • Automatic Reminders
    Perfect for team management, Harvest lets you set automatic reminders for employees to submit their timesheets. Staff permission adjusting is also possible.
  • Compare time devoted to different projects
    This unique feature lets you comparatively assess the time devoted to different projects, tasks and by employees.
  • Create invoices seamlessly
    Harvest automatically pulls in data for hours and expenses and organizes them to make billing fast, accurate and easy. Plus, it lets you use filters to highlight billable, non-billable, employee or contractor hours.
  • Export reports
    You can even export reports to CSV, Excel, Google Drive and more using this brilliant tool.

With features as impressive as these, Harvest surely seems to be one time tracking tool that is more than just a time tracking tool. It’s a one-stop solution for corporates who wish to simplify the entire timesheet process and make their life easier.

How it works

You can check out how Harvest works through an instant free trial. Just click on the big green button on the homepage that says “Try Harvest Free” to start the 30 day free trial. You could also choose to watch a nice little film directed at marketing the tool.

harvest1

Once you’ve completed the sign-up (which is free by the way), you’re shown a pop-up where you need to verify your currency format and let the makers know how you got to know about the tool.

The next thing you see is a Welcome page and a prompt to “Create your first project”. You can get straight to the point or choose to browse through available Webinars (Live online classes), Help Center or Support. If you choose to go ahead with creating a fresh project, you’ll see another form asking you for details about the project you want to create. Fill in details like Client name, Project title, dates, invoice method, budget, tasks etc. You can even choose to add people to this project and send them invites to join the project on Harvest.

Once you’re through, add tasks to the project if you wish to and Save it. That’s actually it! You have a project set up and ready to be tracked with timesheets and all the works. And all it took was 5 minutes, a little information and few clicks. An easy tabbed menu lets you navigate between your timesheets, projects, reports, invoices and management giving the whole thing a very relaxed, even fashionable feel.

Major Advantages of Harvest

The plus point of this tool lies in its professionalism and flexibility. The terminology used in Harvest is very professional and at par with that used in other time tracking tools. You’ll find that this tool has everything you need in a time tracking tool with the additional advantage of a sense of ease. The click-next phenomenon, easy creation of projects and tasks make it a definite winner.

harvest2

Add to that the easy accessibility factor. As compared to other tools which restrict you to using them within the company’s intranet or VPN (virtual private network), Harvest lets you access it and track time from any location as well as any device. That gives the employees a sense of freedom when it comes to working from a location other than office. They can take their work home and manage their time as they wish. This factor can play a major role in boosting productivity and creativity.

Another benefit of this tool’s working model can be seen if a company hires freelancers in addition to the regular workforce. With Harvest, the regular employees and the freelancers can work as one team without any technical hindrances. All times can be tracked and maintained as one. That is the actual power Harvest brings with it.

The Bad

The only downside to this tool is the price associated with it. Most organizations today use in-built timesheet tracking tools which are frankly not that difficult to develop and are of course more reasonable to maintain. That said, a tool such as Harvest that comes with a full-fledged set of features, professional feel, far reach, flexibility and user-friendliness is well worth its price.

  • Track your work time with a few clicks with @harvest getharvest.com/ via @supermonitoring

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Final Words

Tracking time should surely not be a time taking activity. However, it unfortunately becomes so quite often. If you’re interested in letting go of the headache of maintaining a competent tool that lets you spend less time in tracking and more time in doing, choosing Harvest would be the way to go. So what if it comes for a price? That’s an aspect you’ll happily overlook once you experience it.

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