Using LiquidPlanner: A New Employee’s Favorite Things

Alison Clancy | February 22, 2011

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Hi there! I’m Alison, the new Online Marketing Manager at LiquidPlanner. Project management is all about timelines and deadlines, right? Well, here’s my personal timeline as of late: Flew from my hometown of Boston and landed in Seattle on a Thursday, got a car and a place to live on Sunday, then sat down in my new office at LiquidPlanner headquarters on Monday. Efficiency and productivity are two things I know plenty about after moving across the country in just a few days!

So how do I manage my professional projects? I’ll be the first to admit that my “process” usually involves haphazardly writing down a To-Do list in crazy Roger Rabbit handwriting and then using a large (preferably pink) marker to cross off things as I go. Oh, and I like Post-It Notes. A lot.

I think it was during the first half hour of my inaugural day at LiquidPlanner last week when I realized that I was about to get a crash course in the art of project management. I soon found myself signed up for the LiquidPlanner software, and after quite a few chats with the incredibly helpful sales and support department here in the office, I was left to my own devices. It’s been exactly one week since that fateful day, and though I’m not quite ready to retire my girly writing utensils, using LiquidPlanner for my day-to-day tasks has helped me get things done faster and in a much easier way. Here are some of my favorite LP features:

1. Project Timer

TimerWe’ve all been there: You start a task, thinking “Oh, this will only take me an hour or so,” and then all of a sudden, three hours have gone by? Did you fall asleep with your eyes open? Did we just Do the Time Warp again? In most cases, you may have gotten distracted by other things going on in the office or on your Farmville account. It’s good to have a timer front and center so that you can keep right on task and get your projects accomplished in the most efficient way.

2. Chatter

ChatterI’ve heard from a number of people that they wish their teams would stop relying so heavily on email and start using a central portal for all projects. LiquidPlanner takes the idea of email and other chat services and has replaced them with a feature called “Chatter” where you can start conversations with your coworkers under project headers. These exchanges can be devoted solely to the task at hand, which is nice especially when your inbox is suffering from a deluge of emails coming at you from your mother, your spouse, your favorite store (that’s having a sale, TODAY ONLY!) and Facebook. I love the quick communication aspect and having all the notes about a project collected in one place.

3. Best Case/Worst Case Time Estimation

Remaining TimeI love this feature the most, because sometimes, life happens, and LiquidPlanner realistically accounts for that. Like the first task says, I might work for five hours on a project, or maybe ten! No matter what, I’ll still be on schedule, which is good for me and everyone on staff.

What are YOUR favorite LiquidPlanner features?  Now that I’ve finished this blog post, I think I can cross it off my To-Do List (by clicking the “Done” button on LiquidPlanner, of course).

– Alison