I asked this back in 2011, but I’m at a new company now and my previous company ended up writing their own.
I need something REALLY simple. Barely more than an Excel spreadsheet, I think. Here’s the “What” before getting into the how.
We have a lab of chemists. We have product development projects, e.g. “Modify A-3104 to meet OTC2 requirements” or “Develop a version of XZ-34 that can be used outside down to 35 degrees Fahrenheit.” Usually one chemist per project, sometimes more than one.
When I look at project management software, it is usually designed to manage a single big project, such as the development of a new piece of software. So a lot of focus on breaking the project into pieces, dependencies of the pieces to each other, Gant charts of all of the pieces, etc.
I want to have something where I can have an overview of each project - Name, date started, description of the project, target completion date, current status. Then the ability to click on a project and bring up the page(s) for that specific project, where the chemist can update the status, attach documentation, etc. It would be nice to be able to pull up a calendar that shows all of the projects together on the calendar. (one spreadsheet type manager I looked at could do that for pieces of the same project but not multiple projects.)
If I was at all proficient in Excel I might could design this myself; I’m not, so I can’t. But maybe there’s a better simple approach that’s not Excel based. Also I recently decided to move from the big global companies I have worked for in the past to a quite small, family owned company, so cost is a factor.