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Project Management For Dummies®, UK Edition by Stanley E. Portny, Nick Graham

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Chapter 18

Using Technology to Up Your Game

In This Chapter

Recognising software’s role in project planning, control and communication

Sizing up the benefits and limitations of technology in project management

Making data available and supporting virtual teams

Getting computer software and services for free

A major part of project management is information – getting it, creating it, storing it, analysing it and sharing it. But the key to successful project management is using this information to see what’s going on in the project and exercise control, and to guide and encourage people’s performance.

Technology is providing ever easier and more affordable ways to handle information and also to help with the work involved in areas such as project planning. For example, computer software allows you to enter, store and analyse information and then present the results in professional formats. Email allows written communication with people in remote locations at all hours of the day (and night!), and video conferencing allows you to talk to them too. Computer scheduling tools allow you to draw up activity networks and Gantt Charts (see Chapter 6) much more quickly and easily, but then also help you to make changes easily and rapidly and so keep the plans up to date.

Even with all these advances, however, technology has its limitations and, for example, can’t ensure focused and committed team performance. In fact, excessive reliance on technology can actually result in poor morale, ...

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