Using Online Management Systems to Collaboratively Manage and Organize Projects. Melanie Church Content Services Librarian Jennifer Peters Content Management and Discovery Services Librarian . Rockhurst University Greenlease Library Content Management & Discovery Services Department - PowerPoint PPT Presentation
Using Online Management Systems to Collaboratively Manage and Organize Projects
Using Online Management Systems to Collaboratively Manage and Organize ProjectsMelanie Church Content Services LibrarianJennifer Peters Content Management and Discovery Services Librarian
Rockhurst University Greenlease LibraryContent Management & Discovery Services Department
Jesuit Institution in the heart of Kansas City Approximately 2,400 FTE, 150,000 bibliographic records.
CMDS department 2 professionals, 1 paraprofessional, work study student assistants (11-5)
Project management with studentsDefining what we mean if we say project management. Were borrowing some of the concepts from business, but we werent looking to use it in quite the same way. Were going to use the concepts of managing projects more narrowly. Focusing on projects that involved student assistants, more along the lines of task management, where not all of the planning process is visible or desirable. So, there arent going to be project charters here.
TimelinePaper based Web CT Google Docs & Email
Completely paper-based : inherited project files, partially completed projects, dated student handbookWeb CT - a half attempt at using Web CT to schedule and communicate with students. University had already started to move away from this dated platform.Google Docs & Email- Using a google calendar to schedule student work times, Using Google docs to house project excel files. Many files were being emailed between supervisor and students without clear designation of what version was being worked on or what progress had been made. Quickly became a landslide of google documents with no naming conventions or files. Needed a new solution so I spent the summer investigating different resources.
What wasnt working
Finding documents and instructions
Who does what and when
Landing page for all CMDS workers and librarians
finding documents and instructions keeping these linkedknowing who is responsible who is working on a projectneeded a landing page for all CMDS workers and librariansProliferation of Google Docs, not being able to find things. people lose track of all the Google Docs, so we usually link to them in a Google Site, along with other resources.
What happens when project leader (librarian is out of office) email instructions often duplicated & puts responsibility on student organize. Consistency of where to go at the start of a shift.
Dreaming of a product
EasySet up, use, familiar look and feel for students
AccessFrom anywhere, control level of access, import created training & reporting forms
ScalabilityVarious projects, project inventory, tracking and reporting tool
CostFree is best, but considered some low cost optionsAccess to training documents and excel reporting formsEasy- set up, use, familiar look for studentsfacilitate data sharingQA tools (view, mark problems, notify)User management control who could view and edit, love google docs recent activityScalability - for various projects Project inventory and tracking process / toolCost
Needed different levels of access & permissions: students have to be able to manipulate documents & add data, but not delete documents, etc.
Achieve Balance between Planning and FlexibilityUnderstand the Organizational Culture - to keep student workers agile in their task assignment,
What is Google sites ?
Levels of access: Owner, Collaborator, Viewer
Incorporates Google Drive
Google Sites is a fantastic way for getting a website quickly and efficiently, even if you know nothing about web development or actual coding. Can set permissions so that only people within your library can see or know that the site exists. you can do project tracking between your office teammates, and you can have a company wide intranet.Can be public facing or private. Pre-built Templates available to make it pretty or streamlined.Can be static or more like a wiki.Multi-tier Permissions and Accessibility - There are three levels of permissions within Google Sites: Owner, Editor and Viewer. Owners have full permissions to modify design and content of the entire Google Site, whereas editors cannot change the design of the site. Viewers can only view the site and are not permitted to make any changes to text or otherwise.Storage space from Google: Embedded documents, including Google Documents, don't count against the sites storage quota. However, items added as an attachment or to your file cabinet do count against your quota. Weve been adding documents as links, so it doesnt count against our quota.
Google sites: Organization
Understand your needs
What we put into it
Training materials, Priority lists, Student project assignments, Instructions, Project documentsCrucial to understand the issues or problems that tool is intended to address within the organization.Its important to put thought into the organizational framework and make sure that you group things together in ways that will make sense to students. You dont have to leave the framework static. Thats one good thing about these types of online tools, you can make adjustments to the organization in real time. That being said, its not a good idea to redo the framework of the site in the middle of a project. Commit to it for the academic (or fiscal or calendar) year. One of the big points for us was to make documents easily findable and reorganizing the site immediately would not have served that end.Specific pages we focused on using in the site are Training, Tasks, Projects, and Project Documents.
This is our main landing page. Its got a nice count down box to show where we are in the semester, a calendar to show wholl be in and at what time, and a few words about our work.If students are still in training, they can go to the training area of the site.
Right now there are embedded YouTube tutorial videos, but were looking to expand this section of the site.
This page shows whos working on what project (though I have blocked out the names here), how high the priority is, and whats been finished. You can sort the list in a few different ways: here its sorted by priority-high to low, but you can also do by active or closed status, alphabetical by student, or in order of whats due by date (if you have a number of time-sensitive projects).From there, students can go to the project documents page to get to the spreadsheets & documents theyll be using for the projects.
A piece of our folder structure for organizing documents students are working on.
Manage multiple projects efficiently
Increase departmental communication on student work and ongoing projects
Student arrive and are ready to work and find their tasks and projects
Year in review or central storage for student work
Increase tracking of student work performanceShare our student workers and can reassign them with ease to projects that are top priority and have multiple students working at once. Departmental communication central site for end of year review. Student project evaluation.
Pros / Cons
Students understand google layout and google docsRevision history on each documentStudent evaluation toolAuto saving
Tied to internetDesign and organization of site evolvingGoogle docs: students/staff may need some coaching on some of the finer points of using google docs (how to use the find function in a lengthy spreadsheet), but the barriers to entry are quite low.You can go in and find out when edits were made to a document and match that up with the student who was scheduled to work at that time. Lately, weve also been adding a column to each spreadsheet (especially for data-gathering projects) and having each student record their initials for the data that they record. It makes it much easier to track who may be making errors and provide them with a training refresher. You can also stop them before they create a pattern of errors if you pop into the doc/spreadsheet while theyre working without being physically over their shoulder (monitoring progress from your office).You dont have to worry about whether or not someone is working on the right version of a document because it autosaves. If you lose a wifi connection (which happens with increasing rarity at our library) that autosave will not happen. This hasnt been much of a problem for us, but its an issue to be aware of.In terms of site design, we didnt make it as interactive (or we didnt train students in such a way as to make use of the interactive features) as we had hoped. Students didnt really ask questions through the site or by using the comments feature on the Google docs. Its something were looking into for the future.
Future of our Google Site
Post tests integrated into siteAfter training, between semesters
Expand use of Announcement featureFAQs, blog on progress updates
Project Goal MarkersIncorporate recognition and motivation
Growth of training and instructional materialsusing post tests in survey software at mid semester and between semesters
using the announcement features or a blog to facilitate frequently asked questions
Student or project goal markers/ recognition/ motivation
growth & change of training / instructional materials
Testing for training completion and mid year review. restructuring to identify overall basic instructions or macro level tasks. Didnt use the site much for end of year evaluation, could be an opportunity.making bigger departmental or library goals more apparent for what the student contribute.
Mid-range to Expensive OptionsFlow starting at $19 per month many tiers based on users, workspaces, and storageEPMLive.com Microsoft ProjectAtlassian 2 main products, Jira = ticket tracker & Confluence = collaborationIf you have the money to spend, you can go pretty big. Flow: $19 2 people, 1 work space, 2 gb storage. Do have non-profit & educational discounts EPM Live doesnt sound bad at $6-$28 per person per month, but that could add up very fast.Jira: $10 month for 10 users Confluence: $10 month for 10 users, Promotes itself as a way to get information out of individuals inboxes (reducing emails) and into a centralized spot.
Low Cost OptionsZoho - free for 3 users, then $12 per user per monthAsana- free up to 30 users (hybrid task & project manager)Basecamp - free for one projectGoplan - 3 plan levels starting at $10 a monthFreedcamp software is free, but storage and backups are not Zoho- CRM software, document library to share content with right people. syncs with Google Asana-teamwork communication manager.a web and mobile application designed to enable teamwork without email. Facebook co founder and an ex-engineer at Facebook. product is designed to enable individuals and teams to plan and manage their projects and tasks without email. Each team gets a workspace. Workspaces contain projects, and projects contain tasksBasecamp: Basecampstarts at$20/monthfor 10 projects (great for the beginning of project management -- it was especially great for working across department lines and working with faculty Because it has a low barrier to usenice, intuitive designeasy featuresgreat email integrationI also thought the multi-project support was greatGoplan-dashboard. Collaborative Software, Document Management System, Issue Tracking System, Project Management, Project Portfolio Management, Resource Management, SchedulingFreedcamp touts itself as the closest free option there is to Basecamp. App add ins also cost (CRM, Wiki, Invoices, etc.)
Free* OptionsTrello - basic free forever Podio - free to 100 itemsWrike- free to 5 usersPivotaltracker free for academic institutionsRedbooth free to 5, 5 projects, 5 GB storage & google drive integration also have premium plansAzendoo - free, forever and for unlimited users. Also have premium plansThere are a lot of similarities between the different alternatives--many of them have mobile versions & document/file organization tools--but one of the major philosophical differences centers around email. They seem to either want to reduce/eliminate email from the workflow or they want to be part of your existing inbox landscape. So, one question you might consider is to what degree do you want to use the online management system as a communication system?Trello - Trello is a collaboration tool that organizes your projects into boards. In one glance, Trello tells you what's being worked on, who's working on what, and where something is in a process Scrum and agile project management online. collaboration tool that organizes your projects into boards which contain lists (corresponding to task lists). Lists contain cards (corresponding to tasks). also have a business class & trello gold
Podio: pricing base on # of items (anything you create within the app projects, webforms, meetings, etc) has activity stream that looks a bit like Facebook. Theyre more focused on their mobile interface than their desktop. Promotes the elimination of emails.
Wrike: Web-based, makes a point of being integrated with other software systems (Google, Dropbox, Microsoft Outlook). promotes the integration of email. You can forward an email to wrike & it will save it as a new task. You can also update statuses from your email & you will get automatic notifications there when deadlines are approaching.
Redbooth: Nice visual color coded task reporting: resolved, overdue, planned, pending. file storage up to 5 GB. Integration into email systems, can create tasks from Gmail or Outlook.
Azendoo free: Unlimited users, Unlimited projects and tasks, Mobile app and integrations, 10Gb storage Premium: 1 premium workspace upgradeEnhanced admin and control, 50Gb storage
Questions? Comments? Your Ideas?
The software you choose is simply a tool and cannot compensate for poor planning and organization.
Melanie Church Content Services Librarian firstname.lastname@example.org
Jennifer Peters Content Management and Discovery Services Librarian email@example.com