Microsoft Project is a very useful tool for planning and monitoring projects of all kinds. To make full use of its benefits to efficiently apply it to translation projects, you must have basic knowledge of project management and follow some simple rules. MS Project has many functions and they can be overwhelming for new users. Here are some tips to get started:
Use MS Project as a help tool
Use it as the main portal of the project and as a source of information and consultation on a daily basis whenever a decision is made on the project.
Used in a manner that represents a benefit to the PM and the project
It is necessary to identify and, where applicable, adjust the level of management in MS Project that best suits the project so that it is of assistance and not a burden. Remember that you should always spend more time on communication between members of the project, performing follow-up and training resources directly or indirectly, than on the administration of MS Project.
Never let the tool (MS Project) to manage the project
The Project Manager is the one who should make the necessary decisions. Neither this nor any other tool can make decisions. Instead, they provide the necessary structured information that is used as a basis for management.
The structure of the project in MS Project must reflect reality and be based on WBS (Work Breakdown Structure)
The level of complexity and detail in MS Project must remain in alignment with reality and also be sufficiently simple for maintenance and updating. When a project follows the WBS, created before the execution of the project itself and which is updated continuously during the project, the chances of success increase significantly. Dividing the work into smaller segments is essential, especially in large and/or multilingual projects, with all the inherent risks. The PM should identify the different tasks in order to create a “timeline”, analyze the workload of resources, the budget, and develop a communication plan that provides for simply tracking the workflow and informing the client of the progress.