The last 12 months has fast tracked the use of software systems for project management into a global reality for many and to align with our growth we’re delighted to announce the expansion of our team with the appointment of James Strahan. James joins Aprika Business Solutions as our Marketing Manager to lead the charge on strategic marketing growth and customer acquisition. We catch up with James to talk about the industry now, the impact of 2020 and the opportunities that lie ahead.
WHAT’S YOUR TAKE ON THE RAPIDLY CHANGING FACE OF PROJECT MANAGEMENT DURING THE LAST 12 MONTHS?
2020, and it’s partner-in-crime COVID-19, has accelerated the need for remote technology and automated workflow. While we’re increasingly physically disconnected the need for improved transparency and accountability has sky rocketed as we continue to govern ourselves, our time and our working environments.
Last year also saw increasing demand on project visibility for business leaders, a greater emphasis on data privacy and utilization, and an increased emphasis on the importance of modernising and digitising business workflow. It’s really highlighted how many industries, particularly professional services business would benefit from a centralised SaaS project management software solution that perhaps wouldn’t have been seen as such a priority previously.
WHERE DO YOU SEE THE OPPORTUNITIES MOVING FORWARD?
With COVID-19 impacting the ability to travel or even the ability to work from anywhere but home, employees will look to their employers for different ways they can stay connected, communicate and manage work and projects remotely, effectively and most importantly, digitally.
But, many organizations suffer from slow procedures, complex bureaucracies and rigid hierarchies making organizational life less than pleasant. COVID-19 has forced many of them to break through these rigid systems and act instantly. Suddenly procedures can be skipped or accelerated, rules can be side-tracked and decisions can be made more autonomously without formal approval. And suddenly employees are allowed to work from home without direct supervision.
This rapidly changing landscape, coupled with the microscope that COVID has put on poor business practices or project processes has led to more and more customers approaching us with these issues, looking for a centralized project and automation tool that improves collaboration and visibility.
WHAT DO YOU SEE AS THE CHALLENGES?
The vastly improved work/life balance over the past 12 months (for many people) has meant keeping track of staff capacity and projects in general has been challenging. A major global challenge over the next 12 months for employers, especially as their employees slowly rotate back to the office, is keeping an eye on staff capacity, scheduling and projects.
Being able to maintain that visibility on project forecasts and financials, maintaining transparency around project goals and delivery and keeping an eye on staff availability and capacity are going to be critical to business success in the new world.
For employers using desktop based PSA solutions, or project and PSA solutions that are not connected natively to their CRM will struggle to maintain the visibility of their staff productivity and keep their business centered around the customer going forward.
WHAT ARE YOU MOST EXCITED ABOUT FOR THE FUTURE?
Aprika has a solid foundation of more than a decade of developing software solutions that help employees and employers transform and digitize their businesses. While we’re a global business, we are headquartered in Australia which has maintained a very strong health system and economy meaning many businesses have survived and even thrived, so with that great baseline and now 6,000+ happy customers, we have a solid launchpad to prosper both locally and expand further into our global markets.