From Solo Developer to a Team

Ryan Masuga, Masuga Design, wrote a customer story
ActiveCollab was my first choice for web development. I started using it as a freelancer many years ago. To make my business look more professional to clients, I needed a solid project management system. It was great when I first started my business, but it has become even more valuable as I have grown it into the small team that it is today. We have many more projects and more clients using ActiveCollab every day. ActiveCollab has been very reliable. We have seen improvements and new features over the years, including a browser plugin and the addition to the hosted version. We have used the self-hosted version since before there was a hosted one. We are very hands-on with it. Self-hosting is not without its professional side. We run our install on a subdomain over SSL of our main website. It’s easy to add branding using the Appearance settings in our Administration area. ActiveCollab’s latest versions allow us to be notified about any project updates via the web browser notification plugin. This has helped our team respond to comments and discussions faster. A busy Project may have five to ten major milestones, hundreds of tasks, and hundreds of subtasks. The Tasks tab of each Project is where we spend the majority of our time. It is the main, overarching project. Clientsite.com is the name of the site. We use Milestones within each project to refer to sub-projects like “New Video Section” and “Fix Footer links.” The Tasks are all that goes into each Milestone. We can add as many Tasks as we need to each Milestone. Subtasks are the more detailed tasks that must be completed. They can be assigned to any member of the team and have different labels (statuses), priorities, due dates, and labels. One example might look something like this:Clientsite.com – Q1 Work (Milestone). New Video Section (Task).- Add fitvid.js.- Hook up YouTube field to CMS (Subtask).- Finish custom Vimeo plugin. In addition to the Subtasks for each Task, there are also comments threads that can be used to communicate with the client. These comment threads can also be emailed to be answered. ActiveCollab’s Tasks and Subtasks are unique in that they can be marked “Resolved” (or “Need Feedback”) by the client to gauge how much work they’ve done or what they need to review. I find it hard to believe that other systems don’t provide this level of detail. I’m curious how teams keep track who is doing what and how they are tracking time. There are many third-party modules that can be added to the core product. ActiveCollab is a great option for anyone looking for a project management system that is user-friendly and actively developed.

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