I’ve been working on larger and larger projects recently and collaborating with other developers to help me get the work done.
This increasing workload and the need to assign work to other developers led me to find a solution for managing my projects, that would suit working with other people.
Cue WP Project Manager.
WP Project Manager is a WordPress-based project management system, that allows you to manage all of your projects, whether they be WordPress projects, or any other kind of project (such as a design project, or business consulting project).
You can add all of your team members, such as your contractors and your clients, using the user system in WordPress. The user accounts only need to have a subscriber role to use this plugin, so you can limit what they have access to in your dashboard as much as you need.
You have the ability to add as many projects as you want. With each project, you can add a title and a description, and add all of the people that you want to have access to the project (users only have access to the projects that you assign them to, so there’s no need to worry about anyone having access to projects that they shouldn’t).
When you first open a project, there’s an overall activity view, which shows you what’s been going on, in reverse chronological order, which is useful for getting a quick feel of where things stands.
Within each of your projects, you can set up all of your project milestones. Again, with each milestone, you can add a title and a description, and then the due date for the milestone.
The milestone view shows which projects are ahead of schedule, and which ones are behind schedule.
You can also create as many to-do lists as you need, and each one can be attached to a milestone.
Each task within the to-do list can be given a deadline, and you can assign the responsible user to the task, so that everyone knows who is responsible for what.
Each project also comes with a message board, so you can discuss the project with your project team. This makes for an excellent central location where all project decisions are made and documented.
Furthermore, each task has a messaging feature, so you can discuss the finer details of each task with your project team.
You can also attach your project files to your project, so everyone has access to your design files, meeting notes, or whatever else you might want to supply to the team.
This is the feature that really makes this a useable system in my view: with every function, you can elect to notify your team members about the update. So, if you create a new task and you want to notify everyone, or just a select few about it, just check who you want to notify and click save. An email will be sent to the users you selected, and there’s templates for each email type. This way, you can notify specific team members about what they need to work on, and what they need know about.
Areas for improvement
While this is an excellent plugin, and I’m now using it to manage all of my projects, it does have a couple of shortcomings. For instance, I would love to have a global to-do list, showing me all of my tasks from all of my projects, preferably ordered by date, so that I can get an overall view of what needs my attention.
There’s a couple of other minor things, but overall, it’s really helped me to manage my projects better, and if I see a real need, the project is on GitHub and I can always contribute.