If you work on projects online and you haven’t tried Asana yet, you are seriously missing out. This software offers all the right tools you need for managing teamwork and creating a flexible work environment. Asana is both simple and unique, giving users complete control over their projects at all times. Below you’ll find some of the features of Asana that will help you improve project management.
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Introducing Inbox – a huge step towards a post-email world
The problem with emails is that they are slow, sometimes too slow. In fact, if you use your own domain, which is considered common nowadays, chances are that your messages suffer from a minute-long delay. Occasionally, that time can grow into hours, depending on your host. To make things worse, people simply refuse to open their email frequently enough. Even if you access your email every hour, you are bound to miss important updates, especially when you work on many projects, where the messages pile up fast. So, the Asana team responded by introducing Inbox, a messaging system that makes communication within a project effortless. Inbox is all about staying up-to-date on what matters, it gives you the history and current status of the work. The communication originates from a single source that every team member has access to; that’s what makes it so amazing. This form of communication relies on server-side messaging, instead of the currently overused email standard. Inbox takes inspiration from the best notification systems out there and makes things simple, resulting in effortless coordination.
With Inbox, you get:
|You will no longer need to check your email to follow the latest updates regarding the project of your interest. With one click, you see a summary of the project and all the notes, documents and comments from your teammates.If you find all that information overwhelming, you can just choose to follow the tasks and updates you care about.You can drop off any irrelevant threads in one click.As for finding new information, you don’t have to check every thread and spend hours searching. Inbox lets you perform a quick scan and get everything that you need in a matter of minutes.The Asana team didn’t want you to be wasting your time and effort in reading countless boring emails. With Inbox, you get complete control over the information flow and thus, you work faster.|
Managing projects effectively
So you decide to use Asana and suddenly, all of your communication problems disappear. The trick is that Asana has the kind of interface that you can work within, without having to actually worry about how your information is perceived later on. In other words, if you want to comment on a particular part of a project, you do so, and it’s documented in the exact same way and place for all of your teammates to see. Furthermore, suggestions, projections and comments are grouped into categories, so it’s easy for people to find exactly what they are looking for. The point of Asana is that you don’t have to classify anything yourself.
- The left section covers the project hierarchy, with all current projects grouped in any way you see fit. By default, Asana suggests that you group all your projects primarily by your personal profession. You can also group the projects by the type of job and so forth.
- The middle section is the largest one of the three and it changes according to the project you select on the left. What you get is a complete list of the tasks that are contained within the selected project and the ability to group and tag them
- The right section provides you with all the details you need about the tasks you select in the middle section, including comments about the tasks, who the tasks are assigned to and much more.
Asana was designed entirely in HTML5, making seamless manipulation of its design possible, by dragging and dropping tiles and tasks across the screen. This also means that if you use multiple monitors, you can arrange the tiles on your screen to better operate within your work environment. Your layout is automatically saved, so you don’t have to set it up each time. The projects in Asana can hold quite a bit of data. You can customize what kind of data you would like to store. Again, Asana suggests assigning members to a certain job and giving them due dates in the process. You can also comment on the projects, add tags and even choose whether or not to receive notifications on every project.
Work strictly within Asana
Before starting a project in Asana, convince your teammates to not use any additional add-ons, services and platforms. The best thing that you can do for your team is train them to limit the communication and work strictly within the software. Asana was designed to deal with every aspect of running a project. That is to say, you never need to go outside of Asana when managing a project. In fact, staying strictly within Asana is likely to increase your productivity by at least a few hundred percent.
Get a daily taste of the full Asana experience
If you’ve used any other project management software in the past, chances are the interface will confuse you at first. Use it so often, that it becomes second nature to you. It makes all the difference. In fact, you could reduce the time it takes you to do a simple task within Asana by as much as a 1000%.
You could further improve your Asana experience by making sure that you:
In fact, you can find a short list of the most important shortcuts on the footer, along with links to tutorial videos that can improve your experience greatly.
Consider implementing Asana into your daily activities. It might seem a bit strange at first, but the point to using Asana optimally lies in knowing exactly what it does and where the right tool is located. It’s not enough if you are the type of person who simply reads a manual. You want to master Asana and know it like the back of your hand.
Go mobile with Asana
You should not hesitate to download the official Asana mobile apps in case you don’t feel like lugging a computer around. Think about it, your entire project exists in an Asana database, one that is always online and accessible from anywhere. That database can be reached through an app on your phone. What this means is that you can take your work anywhere you go and manage your projects the way you usually do when using a computer.
Follow the Asana blog
Finally, you should follow the official Asana blog and track the latest news regarding the software. You can also discuss your experience with Asana, as well as your problems with other visitors and the developers, which has a double benefit. Firstly, you help the developers improve the software to your specifications. Secondly, you learn how to use the most of Asana.
Improve project management with Asana
At the end of the day, the best way to use Asana is your way. Asana creates a work environment with all the features that you need in order to easily manage and complete projects. You can organize your team and share and discuss assignments anyway you please; no longer will you be distracted by the constant flood of emails during your work hours. With Asana, you know that if it’s important to the project, it’s not coming through email, so feel free to disable your email notifications during work hours and enjoy the productivity boost. If you want to track time to projects, check out Hubstaff Asana time tracking integration.
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