If you own a mid or senior-level management role, you would be juggling multiple projects at the same time. Project management is an important part of your job because it helps to boost the productivity of your team members and get the work done on time. Multitasking is highly appreciated in today’s workplace context, and culture and the same is expected when it comes to project management. Projects, which comprise a plethora of subtasks, involve ideation to strategy to execution to performance and delivery management. And, managing and keeping a tab on projects from holistic standpoints may become overwhelming for project managers. The criticality, the redundancy of managing, and tracking multiple projects may take quite a bit of their time, and other resources.
Challenges in Managing Multiple Projects
Project management involves many task aspects, and several glitches and challenges may crop up to disrupt project management and tracking. Onboarding plays a pivotal role for any project, and in the scenario where onboarding is delayed due to any reason, managing and tracking the project may pose challenges. And, the issue is just amplified when an employee has to juggle multiple projects. There is also scope for task alignment issues and redundancy, which may impact employee productivity, and ultimately, client expectation management. Inadequate project management may further derail the marketing campaigns, which will lead to deviation in the project outcomes or the desired results.
Key Strategies to Manage Multiple Projects
Multiple project management is a universal challenge that employers and employees contend with alike. Here, we have jotted down the key eight strategies that can be leveraged to manage and track multiple projects at once.
Set the task-level priority
Priority is one of the leading factors in achieving goals. Every task in a project has its importance and priority. Therefore, it is essential to plan, execute, and ultimately track the humongous tasks and subtasks under each project. Robust program management tools ensure that each task is accompanied with a priority to promote a sense of urgency. This will help the relevant employees working on the task have clarity about the significance of the task timeline and how critical it is for the project’s success. This will also help them plan out their workload or activities daily to achieve greater efficiency and productivity.
Successful multitasking, how favorable or achievable do you think it is? Not so effective, right? In its stead, try for successive multitasking, which means you move on to the next task after finishing off the priority ones first. When it’s about project management, you may have to deal with a host of concurrent tasks. So, the most viable option is to allocate specific times or slots for each task, which will allow you to dedicate time to accomplish the task. This will not interfere with the rest of your deliverables, and you will be able to ensure quality, productivity, and efficiency at the same time.
Given the rapid spread of the COVID-19 pandemic, remote work culture has ingrained itself quite effectively. While remote working has its perks, it is not devoid of challenges. For instance, there are many distractions to be expected in the home environment, which may directly or indirectly impact the project management aspects or as simple as completing a simple task. On top of that, there is always the distraction of social media, online surfing, and binge-watching. Robust program management tools and techniques will help employers gauge the idle time of the employees or for how long they have been away from work. Succinct reminders could be set to assist the employees in achieving a healthier work-life balance and promoting greater focus at work.
As we have already covered earlier in the article, project management involves many tasks and subtasks varying in nature, criticality, and time required to accomplish the tasks. Here comes the concept of delegation. Delegating segregated tasks to the right team members will help the project managers successfully meet the project delivery goals and timelines. The critical aspect to note here is that project managers must retain insights into each task to address concerns before time to avoid roadblocks or unwarranted challenges. Robust program management tools and techniques offer more profound insight into who is working on what and whether everything is on schedule or not, etc.
Managing and tracking multiple projects at once requires a concise view of the road ahead. Project managers must have clarity about the project phases and what’s up next to allocate the necessary resources and align the tasks to achieve the desired results. This is where a project management tool can lend a helping hand. There will be scope for realigning work to keep it evenly distributed at all times so that there are no completely busy or idle times.
The perceived notion of project progress and the ground reality may vary, which the project manager or the responsible team members might not be aware of. The time tracking feature of project management solutions helps address this concern. Project managers can gain insights into whether a particular task is taking more or less time than expected to help them better understand the intricacies of multiple projects at hand and plan out the execution accordingly.
Scheduling dedicated slots for completing a task is imperative. So, is the need to be flexible enough at the same time. In case an emergency task comes up impromptu, project managers should accommodate it considering the criticality. Here, again, the time tracking feature of a project management solution can come in handy.
Employees working on the projects and the end clientele for those projects are critical for ensuring project-level success. So, it is essential to manage expectations upfront for both parties. For example, the project manager must communicate about the project plans, phases, task details, and priorities to the team members. At the same time, the clients or end-users must be conveyed SMART goals or what to expect. This synchronization will help project managers juggle multiple projects successfully at once.
Ignatiuz has been instrumental in offering B2B organizations succinct, robust, and scalable tech-led solutions to streamline business functions and achieve greater productivity, efficiency, and business ROI.
When it comes to managing and tracking multiple projects at once, the Smartsheet application from Ignatiuz is the ultimate solution. It essentially addresses project onboarding delays, time wasted on redundant tasks and streamlining marketing campaigns.
Smartsheet also leverages greater team collaboration enabled by an intuitive user interface. It also plays a pivotal role in automating business processes, offering real-time visibility into project tasks and progresses, and ensuring secure deployment. Smartsheet can be seamlessly integrated with the existing organizational systems for better coherence.