A project tool is not always a piece of project management software. It can be a process or technique or system. I recently read a blog post by Josh Nankivel on Systems Thinking. It was actually a review of a book that Josh had read, but he brought out some interesting points. As I read through these I again thought of the reasons that we decide to implement some sort of project management software. What is our goal?
When we get right on down to it, is our goal not to make our project systems as efficient as possible? To develop maximum output, to identify core causes of problems, to create predictability? When I say "system" I am referring to the whole process or engine that causes projects in your organization to be completed successfully - your processes, tools, resources, techniques, and more.
Your project management software tools are there to support this system and should enable you to do things like:
- Find root causes of problems
- Identify problems and prevent them
- Discover where performance is lagging so that efficiency can be improved
You should be constantly doing these things. Read Josh's post and see how you are doing with systems thinking.