I write to do lists. I used to write them on post it notes or in a note pad. Then I progressed to reminder tools on my smartphone and then I wanted to do something with those lists to better manage them and myself. Enter Basecamp.
To describe Basecamp as a glorified to-do list would be a serious injustice. Its so much more than that. That’s just that I was introduced to it.Basecamp describes itself as “Project management Software, online collaboration” tool. It allows you to manage projects; everything from weddings to parties, to more business orientated projects (unless weddings and parties are your business). I currently use it to manage all my clients projects. This could be designing logos, designing simple websites to more complex ones. I can set up each project with a to-do list so I have a standard process to follow through on each project to make sure quality remains high and I don’t forget anything. The older I get, the more I forget. I think that’s right anyhow…
The beauty of Basecamp, is in collaboration. I allow my clients to login -just to their project and I can communicate with them to make sure communication flows well through the lifecycle of the project. I can post drafts that i’ve been working on for their feedback, I can post things they need to think about and they can also see the to do list which can have items assigned to them and automatically emailed to them 48hours before that item needs to be completed. This way we have a complete audit trail of any decision made.
Another part of Basecamp I’ve started to use more of late is the Writeboards. These are genius. If you are editing a text based document of which you need feedback and contributions from other people, Writeboards allow you to do this. You post your initial draft and when your colleague view sit, they can then edit and Basecamp automatically saves another version. The original is still intact. You can thus have several versions each of which can be compared so you can view what’s changed.
I have some of my clients posting all their content here to edit with colleagues before finalising for me to include in the website.
Basecamp has the usual project management tools, such as a calendars for plotting milestones, the aforementioned to-do lists. It also has a document upload facility to share files, keeping everything together.
Its invaluable for my business now. Clients appreciate it as they can easily see what’s going on and feel much more a part of their own project which is how it should be.
Even if you’re not using it for business it can be a great too to organise events and various life stages. Its easy to use and apparently there are more developments planned for next year to make it even better.