Key features in food project management solutions

  • 2
  • April 23, 2021
project management in food industry

Project management is a fundamental issue for today’s businesses. It is increasingly common to hear “we want to work in project mode”, implying a willingness to plan, communicate and collaborate as best we can on projects. But ensuring the smooth running of a project and achieving the objectives requires applying methods, techniques, and using the right management tools at each stage of the project.

Why use a food project management software?

The answer is simple: for organizing, communicating, and assigning tasks.

A good project management tool will create a collaborative workspace, help you spread the workload of each actor, and promote communication among project stakeholders. By being able to exchange, set alerts and receive notifications, teams will have a global vision of the project and its progress, therefore each one can organize itself to make sure the project meets deadlines.

Another key aspect of a food project management tool is the centralization of information. By facilitating data entry and analysis, it will save everyone valuable time on tasks with no added value. Such a tool must be seen as a steering and governance tool that promotes informed decision-making at the right time.

The choice of food project management software

The range of BPM (Business Process Management), project management, task management, etc. tools is very broad. However, the solutions on the market are often focused on a particular aspect: workflows management with conditional steps, schedules and resources management, tasks management (e.g.: Kanban method). However, we have just seen that to lead a project towards success, it is necessary to master three axes at the same time: planning, resource allocation, and communication.

Moreover, if these solutions allow to the management of any type of project, they are usually dedicated to an informed public (project management type MS project) or to developers (creation of workflow templates for some tools requires a high level of configuration or development).

Finally, they require interfaces with other company tools to ensure a good flow of information as they are often detached from the product repository.

What really matters in a food project management software

The case of product development in the world of consumer goods is somewhat special. A good project management tool for food and beverage companies must:

  • Follow a well-defined schedule with milestones or stage-gate,
  • Allow transversal monitoring of several simultaneous developments (often a lot),
  • Allow resources to be allocated to specific tasks at the right time,
  • Condition actions according to previous tasks,
  • Remain flexible in its execution (cancel tasks, add unplanned tasks) to adapt to the rapid cycle of product development,
  • Stay “close” to the target to be developed,
  • Manage a large amount of data required for rapid decision-making.

To meet all these challenges, they need a tool capable of mixing three types of solutions:

  • a planning solution
  • a workflow solution
  • a task creation solution

In addition, it must allow a project to be viewed in different ways depending on the type of project or the desired approach.

A food project management solution integrated with a PLM solution ensures the flexibility necessary for project management while being closer to the product repository. Thus, teams directly visualize the entities (product, recipes/formulas, packaging, suppliers, etc.) on which the development project relates. There is no need for an interface, and the information is no longer duplicated, as it is found in the PLM software.

With the Aptean PLM Lascom Edition solution, align your food project management processes by creating templates tailored to your organization. Define your key steps and associated alerts, plan tasks, their sequences, and dependencies. Visualize the progress of the project easily with Gantt diagrams.

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