Our team of certified consultants provides training andremote support to clients around the globe, improving their Project Management, Workflow and Process Management.
Emma has 27 years of financial and customer experience and brings processes and order to our office.
Emma's customer service knowledge ensures all of our clients office enquiries are dealt with professionally, efficiently and quickly. She will leave no stone unturned to get to the bottom of a query!
When not at her desk Emma enjoys spending time with her husband and daughter as well running Brownies and Rainbows for Girlguiding UK in her local area.
Software Development Manager
Etienne is a seasoned ASP.NET Core Full Stack Developer. He takes great pride in building world-class applications while carefully considering the needs of its users and ease of use.
Originally from France, Etienne now calls Canada Home, where he is part of SBP Canada as a member of the API Solutions Development Team.
Etienne is a well-seasoned traveler and has visited many countries where he usually takes the path less traveled in order to backpack around and soak in the local cultures.
When not coding away, you may expect Etienne to be playing with his huge and fluffy dog Indianna or gaming away on League of Legends
Smartsheet and AppSheet Consultant
David is an experienced Smartsheet Consultant, Customer Care Specialist and Client Account Manager.
In his spare time, David plays guitar, is learning to ride a motorcycle and, when it’s not too cold, can often be found tinkering in the garage. He also intends to learn to play the piano too - one day
Chief Smartsheet Solutions Officer (CSSO)
BSc (Hons) Computing, ITIL Foundation, Smartsheet Certified User, Aligned Sales Certified and Professional Services Certified.
Seasoned Smartsheet consultant and Training professional, Debbie’s creativity, attention to detail, willingness to deliver solutions to fully meet customer requirements and her personable manner earn her excellent client feedback.
When not working, Debbie likes to relax by spending quality time with her family. Living in the New Forest sees her taking many walks through the woods and down to the sea fronts at Lepe and Calshot. Debbie is also a keen hula hooper and has been hooping now for more than 7 years! She owns at least 10 hoops and enjoys a great workout helping her friend to run a hula hoop fitness class.
Dr James Harris
Chief Technology Officer
An experienced IT professional, James has worked for software companies as a Programmer and Test Analyst. He also has extensive experience as a Finance Manager. James brings an attention to detail and flair for problem solving to every project.
Outside of work, James writes comedy, and has had many television credits over the past couple of decades on shows such as Horrible Histories and Russell Howard's Good News. He retains a burning ambition to be as funny as his wife and daughter.
Ph.D. Biochemical Physics, IT and Accounting professional.
Co-founder of Smarter Business Processes, Gwen’s multi tasking roles include ensuring our clients receive the very best in customer care, while responsible for sales and marketing and partner liaison. Just don’t expect to get the cup of tea she promised you!
Away from work Gwen enjoys cycling, pilates, tap dancing and just loves baking.
Co-Founder and Lead Consultant, Richard set up SBP in response to worldwide demand from businesses wanting to implement their own Smarter Business Processes. His rapidly expanding team of experienced Smartsheet and AppSheet Consultants and Trainers share the company's values of achieving improved efficiencies and collaboration by putting people first and releasing them from unnecessary repetitive activities so they can enjoy their work again and focus on what matters to them.
When not at his desk, Richard can be found cycling, swimming and when the opportunity permits, sailing and flying.
Project initialisation can be daunting, yet by taking time to consider the best management tools for the project you can often find the key to success. However, in a fast moving working day when you face many other priorities this maybe easier said than done. Before committing to any agile project management courses or buying any new software read on.
In this article we can help you identify some of the smartest project management tools on the market and how to make the most of the opportunity for you and your team.
What is Project Management?
Project management is the process of leading the work of a team to achieve all project goals within the given constraints. This information is usually described in project documentation, created at the beginning of the development process.
The primary constraints of course are the project scope, time, and budget. We would also add the tools you use and the project management skills the team possess in how to use the software available.
Trying a New Software Solution
Your staff may not have the time or the confidence to acquire new project management certifications. All too often we fall back on the tools that feel familiar to us, rather than those which are right for the job. At Smarter Business Processes, a vital part of what we do is ensuring our clients have the right tools for their business, giving them the confidence to try something new.
The Right Tools Will Make a Difference
The levels of anxiety and stress associated with changes in tools and systems should not be understated. A recent study by the Journal of Business and Psychology found that employees’ self worth is often closely linked to the tools they use. Stress levels are often linked to feelings of uncertainty; employees need to feel confident that any new system will deliver on what it promises.
Review Your Business Needs
Taking the time to review your business needs before implementing new software is essential, as is bringing the team in on the selection process and most vitally the training. Management may not always have full understanding of the intricacies of the tools required to get the job done.
However, by involving your team, you are ensuring you have all the relevant information, and you are encouraging their buy in early on.
What We Hear About Management Tools
At Smarter Business Processes, we hear many of the most common complaints about the available tools. This list comprises a remarkable set of criteria.
Point to note –
Most of these challenges and issues are avoidable by choosing the correct tool for your project and ensuring you secure the right training for your team.
Challenges Teams Face With Many Software Tools
Overly complex. Employees have to spend time navigating various menus to find the features they need. Staff struggling to navigate an unfamiliar system quickly become stressed and demotivated.
Irrelevant to workflow. Management need to have a clear understanding of their team’s workflow processes to ensure they have the right software for their needs. Train your team in tools that are relevant to their role, and achieve what is required.
Cost inefficient. Managers often find themselves out of pocket, having invested heavily in a new software system and only using a fraction of its capabilities.
Too labour intensive. Involving repetitive manual tasks such as data entry.
No allowance for the learning curve. As with all new tools and processes, new a management software project needs time to bed in. Allocating your team training resources is essential, as is a roll out period to iron out any quirks and address issues.
Finding the Right Project Management Tool For Your Team
Management software requirements vary depending on the business, and the size and scope of the project. But in our experience a strong tool will help you understand what project management is and should also do the following, without costing the Earth:-
Help to Plan and Track Deadlines, Resources and Constraints
This is a must. Efficient project managers need to be on top of resource allocation and delivery expectations at all times. Smartsheet’s Control Center can set up and initiate new projects quickly and easily.
Point to Note –
Care is needed in designing and creating the necessary automation at the setting up phase. Take a moment to consider what options you have and what tools there are that could help make this a more efficient process.
Smarter Launch Pad App
For many potential Control Center clients, our consultants recommend our own Smarter Launch Pad, which can do all this for a fraction of the cost.
Help to Communicate Efficiently with Managers and Staff
This doesn’t just mean relying on email to do the job. (yeah, we do it too!) We believe the key to efficient communication is finding accessible ways to keep the team up to date on the data that is relevant to them.
Smarter Dashboard App
We recommend our Smarter Dashboard application as a way to present and manage your data in a real time setting and view it in a range of ways with concise, graphical options. Slice and dice your Smartsheet data in live dashboards with charts, graphs and tables. You can even edit the data live in the dashboard interface.
You can also drill down to your data, simply by clicking on the relevant graph, and present handy snapshots based on any parameters you need!
Be Intuitive to Use
Our clients come to us for solutions they know will be friendly and easy to use, but we pride ourselves on our comprehensive training packages. For more information on using Smartsheet for project management, contact us today to discuss our training options.
Project Management Webinar
You might also be interested in our webinar on Using Smartsheet as a PMO tool. In this webinar we offer a demonstration of how to download Smartsheet’s own PMO Template set and customise it for your own use. This includes set up a project intake sheet, which then launches a project plan to help you coordinate resources and timelines, a project dashboard to help with communications on progress and all the reports and metrics required to roll up the data to a portfolio overview, thus creating a fully integrated Smartsheet PMO Solution.
Reviewing and changing your project management toolkit can power efficiencies and be cost effective, provided it is done in the right way. Take the time to consider your company workflow and business needs, and act in consultation with the team for the best results.
If you are reviewing your business processes and still unsure where to start, get in touch. We can offer a free consultation to uncover the tools, software and processes that are right for you.
If you would like to read more about effective project management and how to demystify the stages of each project, take a look at some of the articles on our blog: