You may already be using Microsoft Project Online for project management, or maybe you’re considering making the switch. Either way, you’ll want to extract maximum value from the product.

Would custom configurations save time? Which third-party integrations are recommended, and why? Well, if you’re serious about using Project Online, consider at least a basic level of customisation.

The case for custom configuration

Earlier this year, we shared our top tips for empowering project teams with Project Online. As we explained, Project Online resolves everyday project management problems – from approvals to task management. However, to ensure projects run optimally, you may need capabilities beyond what comes out of the box. This is because while Project Online can cater for complex projects, it doesn’t come tailored to an organisation’s unique needs. The best way to make Project Online work smarter is to make it simple to use. For example, we help Project Online clients develop intuitive ways to:

  • Tag, sort and find documents
  • Set up gated processes and workflows to align with project governance policies
  • Integrate Project Online with finance, ERP and reporting systems

Let’s take a closer look at popular Project Online integrations, and why they’re valuable.

Financial integration

Recording time against projects is relatively easy. The tricky part is making sure those hours get billed to the client. In many organisations, data is pulled out of the project management software, and re-entered into the finance system. These often-manual processes are time-consuming and prone to error. Integrating Project Online with your finance system eliminates these issues. When team members record the time they spend on each task, Project Online automatically passes that information to your billing system. It’s easy, fast and provides peace of mind that billing data is accurate.

Reporting integration

When it comes to projects, there is no single report that will satisfy all stakeholders. CEOs want high-level reports that show how projects are performing relative to budgets and schedules. Portfolio managers seek oversight across their project portfolio, with reports that show how each project is tracking against deliverables. And project managers need access to granular reports, with everything from scheduling information to time spent on a particular line item. It’s no surprise that many organisations choose Project Online to improve reporting and visibility. As Microsoft’s native project management tool, it seamlessly integrates with Power BI to deliver advanced reporting and analytics. Combined together, business users at all levels can create custom reports and dashboards to gain insight into project performance.

Start your Project Online journey

There’s no denying Project Online is a powerful tool for project management and collaboration. And while its out-of-the-box features are a great start, it’s worth getting things configured by a Microsoft certified partner. Whether by building integrations, or supporting the transition to a smarter way of working, we’ll help your business reach its full potential. Contact us today.

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