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May 25, 2011

Flow – Fluid Project Management

Flow is a project management application that aims to be the exact opposite of the forced, constricted systems of yesteryear. People who use Flow can work anywhere, at any time, with anyone. Flow doesn’t put any limits on who its users can work with, which allows people to collaborate with friends, family members, coworkers, and clients all in one centralized place.

If your team is ready to try a more free flowing project management system, then it’s time to introduce Flow. The web-app claims that users can sign up and start getting organized within just 10 seconds. The hub for all your Flow activity will be in your Inbox. Clicking on the Inbox icon will bring up a list of all new tasks that haven’t yet been delegated or filed in a list. Like other project management systems, Flow lets you categorize tasks, add due dates and deadlines, delegate assignments, share files and documents, and lead discussions among coworkers online. Employee-to-employee conversations that take place within Flow are much more secure than those that happen through email. Flow also lets employees “follow” the tasks they’ve been assigned to work on, ensuring they’ll always be notified when their tasks are updated, edited, or completed.

What separates Flow and makes it more useful than other project management applications is that users can integrate the various aspects of their lives – work, home, and anything else – into the single system. On one screen, users can check what time they need to pick their kids up from school, find out what needs to happen before their kitchen renovation is complete, and ask for an extension on an unattainable task deadline. All of this activity happens in real time across multiple platforms, which means that users can update their information just as easily on a laptop at work as they can from an iPhone or by using the desktop companion for Mac computers at home.

Practical Uses:

  • Work efficiently with your team at work
  • Schedule household tasks with your spouse and assign chores to your teenagers
  • Get work done when you’re at home, on the road, or in the office
  • Find out when a coworker has finished his part of a group assignment

Insider Tips:

  • Sign up to receive notices when details about any task are updated or changed
  • Leave notes on certain tasks by emailing [email protected]
  • Download the companion Mac app to get work details straight onto your desktop
  • Conversations on Flow automatically refresh whenever a new comment is added

What we liked:

  • People can use Flow to organize their entire lives, not just their work projects
  • Users can see updates from all of their colleagues on the group activity feed
  • Individual tasks can be followed, just like people can be followed on Twitter
  • iPhone users can check off certain tasks even when they’re not at a computer

What we didn’t like:

  • Nothing

Alternatives:

Company Info:

  • Launched: March 2011
  • Privately Held
  • Headquarters: Victoria, British Columbia
  • Founded by: MetaLab
  • Web site: http://www.getflow.com

Costs:

  • Free 14-day trial
  • $9.99/month
  • Discounts available for users who buy additional accounts for their team

Comments

  1. I wonder if this app allows users to export their data to printer friendly formats, but I have to admit the features look really appealing to someone who is interested in exploring time management apps that can be used to collaborate with other users!

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