The variety and number of project management software and applications available today is quite frankly overwhelming. There are hundreds of applications that are all slightly different, and supposedly are all meant to do the same thing. In my short time in the field, I’ve only been exposed to a select few but I’ve learned a lot from that exposure. The single most important things that I’ve learned is that at the end of the day, your preferences probably don’t matter if they don’t align with the program your company expects you to use.
At Ball State, pretty much every project must be managed in Workfront, formerly AtTask. Like I said, almost all of these project management applications are pretty much the same, but that doesn’t mean that some are better than others. Workfront is very clunky, light on features, and just not very user friendly. I compare it to a few other systems I’ve used like Basecamp or Trello and it just falls short, especially in the area of collaboration. The feel of Workfront takes me back to 2007 Microsoft Project, outdated and confusing. Even the newest version of Project is a step up from Workfront in my opinion.
I do have to say that I think much of my distaste for Workfront may be because – as a “millennial” – I expect everything to be constantly updated and cutting edge, which the program simply isn’t. Aside from the physical design the deliberate lack of collaboration due to administrative oversight makes the system less responsive and effective than Trello or Basecamp. At first I was tempted to just use a program I preferred in addition to Workfront, but it just became too much of a hassle. That’s when I learned that sometimes you just have to use the tools you have to get the job done, even if there are better tools out there.