Project Management Platform Review: Teamwork PM
It was not long ago that we were singing the praises of Trigger in a review. It really is a beautiful piece of software that’s unparalleled. Unfortunately, some of our clients and staff didn’t feel the same way. As we mentioned in the review, it’s still under development, and there are some glitches – like notifications and mobile compatibility – that need urgent attention.
We would definitely continue using it, but we all know that the customer is king, and when you receive complaints, something needs to be changed.
So we set out to find a new project management solution. That meant trialling about 25 solutions, and then receiving about 250 follow-up emails and phone calls over the course of that week. Not fun, but it had to be done. It’s worth mentioning that we received no follow up emails or phone calls from the TeamworkPM team. Pretty sure that’s a good thing.
The criteria we were looking at going into the process was:
- Beautiful. It must represent us and our work.
- Client Access. We need clients to be able to sign in.
- Time. We work by the hour to reduce costs. We need to be able to keep track of time.
- Billing. Time needs to be converted into invoices.
- Xero integration. This is a must to save on admin cost.
- Mobile. We work where our clients are, so mobile is a must.
- Cost. We need costs to be low! We’re a startup too remember!
- Cool. We’re a pretty cool company, so the system needed to match that.
TeamworkPM is a company in Ireland that does some incredibly good work. It was a little surprising to stumble across them, as they do very little self-promotion. Some of you may remember them from Startup Weekend in Wellington, where Sam Kidd from TeamworkPM was involved.
You already know that it has all the features listed above, because otherwise we wouldn’t be using it. Here are the features that really set it apart for us.
- White-labelling. So this is pretty badass. You can remove almost all evidence of Teamwork’s branding, making it feel very custom-made. You can also upload your own logo which is used all over the platform.
- Custom Domain. Our project management system is now on projects.nzentrepreneurs.org, but it puts no load on our server since it’s all hosted on Amazon S3.
- Custom Colour + Themes. Adding to the custom feel is the colours used. We’ve used NZE blue. It’s pretty spectacular.
- Messages. If you hate email as much as we do, this will be perfect for you. You can send messages to staff, clients, and contractors, and they’re organised by project.
- Google Drive. This is truly amazing. We work with our partners quite a bit (Latch Digital, etc.) so we use Google Drive to share files. TeamworkPM syncs up with Google Drive, and even lets you create a folder for each company or each project. Amazing.
- Cost. Most Project Management tools charge per user. TeamworkPM charges per level. We’re on the $49 / month Business 2 Package, which is perfect for us.
- Gantt Charts. I’ve never really gotten into gantt charts, but some people swear by them.
- Workload. When you’ve got 6 people all around the country working on different things, it’s useful to be able to see what everyone’s up to at any given time. With Workload, Kate Giles can see that Jose Mathias is working on three NZE articles today, and has two hour-long client meetings. Kate will then know not to delegate anything else to Jose, unless it’s urgent.
- iPad / Tablet Compatibility. Most project management solutions use a blown-up version of the smartphone apps for the tablet edition. TeamworkPM has actually designed a completely new iPad / Tablet app that offers functionality that simply isn’t available on a screen the size of an iPhone.
- SMS notifications. So this is pretty badass. Even cooler, when we hooked up our NZ-based phones to it, the texts actually came through from an NZ number. There is no additional charge for this, and is spectacular for when we’re dealing with busy CEO’s or startup founders.
- Desktop / Mobile Time Tracking Apps. Sometimes it’s nice to work with your browser closed to remove tempting distractions. To our knowledge, TeamworkPM is the only project management system that has apps for iPhone, iPad, Android, Windows, Mac, and even Linux. They’re beautiful too.
Like everything, TeamworkPM is not perfect.
- Dashboard. The dashboard really doesn’t do TeamworkPM justice. It’s very cluttered. However, the company is releasing an improvement for the dashboard in a few weeks.
- Xero. Yes, TeamworkPM does integrate with Xero, but not in that seamless one-click way that Trigger does. You have to export a Xero file, then import that into Xero. It’s still 100 times easier then manually inputing the data. We reached out to TeamworkPM for comment, and they said that the company has no immediate plans to change the way Xero integrates.
Mobile Notifications. Very few project management tools have a mobile app that sends you notifications. TeamworkPM is no different. However, when we reached out to TeamworkPM for comment, a spokesman for the company said, “I believe it is only a matter of time before they are introduced. We are currently collecting feedback on what people would like to receive push notifications for.”
Overall, it’s an improvement on Trigger, and although we do miss the startup tech feel of the app, we don’t miss the glitches that came with it. The customisation and cost of Teamwork is incredible, the features are very robust, and our clients like it.
If you work with us, we’re going to use TeamworkPM. No doubt about it.