Monday, 12 September 2011

Project Management Software for Event Planners

Sorry for the lack of blog posts last week guys! I have been busy and also just wanted to relax during my down time :) I hope everyone had a wonderful weekend.

I have mentioned this before, but it is important as an event professional to stay organized and on top of everything. We often have to juggle multiple tasks and communicate to a wide variety of individuals. This can become very overwhelming and if you don't have a proper system in place you may miss deadlines and not have a good grasp on what needs to get done. Excel spreadsheets, calendars, and task lists are good but sometimes, depending on your workload, you need something more to keep you organized. A project management software is a great tool to keep on top of everything.

There is a variety of project management software out there but the one I am familiar with is Basecamp. I believe it is an amazing organizational tool for many event professionals out there. I used it on a daily basis when I worked as an Event Coordinator for Vancouver Film School. The whole marketing department at VFS used this software for a variety of projects outside of events, however, it can definitely be used to manage events on a small scale and larger scale.

Here are the reasons why I think Basecamp is a great tool for event professionals:

  • Assigns Tasks/Deadlines: You have the ability to create a task, assign a deadline and assign who is responsible for getting the task done. All the deadlines that you create will be added to a calendar so you will be shown a visual of what needs to get done at any given time. This will help you meet all your various event deadlines.

  • Create To Do's: You can create to do list items in no time flat. And we all know how important it is as an event planner to have on ongoing up to date to do list.

  • Create Message Posts: Rather than having confusing, scattered emails about the various event projects you have on the go, you can create message posts. In a message post you can discuss  a particular project within your event and include all the necessary people who are involved in the project. Once a message is posted, anyone included in the post can make comments. Message posts help keep communication clear and keep it open so everyone can work collaboratively.

  • Share Files. Along with posting messages, you can also upload variety of different files that are related to your event. A file can be uploaded with your message post, comment, deadline or to-do item.

  • Email Notification. Whenever someone posts a new message or a new comment (where you are included) you can receive a notification by email. You also get email reminders of upcoming deadlines and a reminder of when your project item is due.

  • Collaborative Word Document. Basecamp has what you call a Writeboard where you can create a web-based document. It is basically a Word document but other people other than the creator have the ability to make changes. The Writeboard tracks all the changes and at any time you can review a previous version of the document or compare versions side by side. This is a great way to work collaboratively if you have a number of people involved in the event production.

I know this post is a bit of a Basecamp promotion, but I really am a strong advocate of this software. It really has kept me organized. Check out their website for more info:

-Shira :)


Tony Mobily said...

Hey, maybe try out Apollo as well!

Apollo is impressive and includes CRM and project management, a calendar, timers, and much more...

Just my 2 biased cents!

ShiraG said...

Hey Tony!

There are tons of other great software out there too, I am sure. Thanks for the suggestion :)