Category Archives: Project and Program Management

Project Management and the Cloud

A Guest Post by Joel Parkinson, a writer for

In the world of information technology, the “cloud” has paved the way for a new method for managing things on the Internet. In a cloud environment, computing “takes place” on the Worldwide Web, and it takes the place of the software that you use on your desktop. Cloud computing is also hosted on the Web, on a server installed in a “data center”, which is usually staffed and managed by people who are experts at technology management. What does the cloud mean to project management? Here’s an overview of what cloud project management is.

What Cloud Computing Means to Project Managers

Project management is defined as the “set” of activities and processes that are done to execute, and complete, a task that’s outsourced by one party to another. Project management ensures the high probability of success of a project, through the efficient use and management of resources.   So what does cloud computing mean to project managers?  According to PM veterans, cloud computing offers a greener and more sustainable project management environment, lowers cost, eliminates the use of unnecessary software and hardware, improves scalability, and eases the process of information-sharing between team managers and staff, customers and executive management.

Benefits of Cloud Project Management

In a project management environment, the cloud speeds up the whole process. As cloud services are available anytime, any day, the cloud can help a project management team hasten the process of execution, and provides improved results and outputs too.   With the cloud, project managers and staff can also easily monitor, and act without delays as information is delivered on a real-time basis. Let’s look at the other benefits of the cloud for project managers.

Improved Resource Management

The cloud’s centralized nature also allows for the improved utilization, allocation and release of resources, with status updates and real-time information provided to help optimize utilization. The cloud also helps maintain the cost of resource use, whether its machine, capital or human resource.

Enhanced Integration Management

With the cloud, different processes and methods are integrated, and combined to create a collaborative approach for performing projects. The use of cloud-based software can also aid in the mapping and monitoring of different processes, to improve overall project management efficiency.

Overall, the cloud platform reduces the gridlocks and smoothens the project management process, and makes the whole project team productive and efficient in terms of quality of service for the customer, and it also enhances the revenues of the organization.

But does the cloud project management model mean a more carefree and less-costly environment? We could say it makes the whole process less costly, but not overly carefree. Despite the perks provided by the cloud, everything still needs to be tested and monitored, and every member of the project management team must still work upon deployment, and each of them should still be fully supported by project managers, and the clients. The cloud is perhaps the biggest innovation in the IT industry because it “optimizes” the utilization of resources within an enterprise.

Systemation’s New Tool Aids Project Managers

Even experienced project managers get stuck occasionally. Perhaps, they need a memory jog regarding a concept they learned in training last year. Or advice on a PM scenario they’ve never faced before. Systemation’s new e-tool, Ask My PM Coach, provides quick responses on over 1,000 project management topics, via computer or mobile device, 24/7.

“This is a new type of on-the-job aid for the project management community,” says Ben Snyder, Systemation’s CEO. “When under a deadline crunch, project managers do not have time to wade through a workbook or online curriculum to locate answers. Ask My PM Coach enables PM’s to get just-in-time responses to burning project management questions.”

The tool provides soup-to-nuts information for every phase of a project: initiating, planning, executing, controlling, and closing. Users can find tips for managing risk, scope, schedule, people, communication, estimating, and more, as well as tricks to get the most from project management tools.

Designed for project managers who have spent time in a classroom, it helps folks translate textbook knowledge into real-world projects.

“In most any sport, players can get advice from their coach in the middle of competition,” explains Snyder. “Ask My PM Coach provides this type of real-time support for project managers—in a friendly, relaxed, accessible way that won’t sideline your key players.”

Companies can purchase bulk licenses for all the project managers in their organization. Or project managers can purchase a license individually.

For more information on Ask My PM Coach, or to learn about Systemation, contact Laurel Bretting at 1.800.747.9783.