Over the years, I have taken part in more than my fair share of group projects. From group presentations, to group design projects, to group papers. Many of these projects were for engineering related courses. To say that communication and planning between myself and my fellow engineering classmates was a struggle, would be an understatement. As I’m sure many students know, breaking up long projects into manageable pieces is often very difficult as is dividing responsibility among group members. Just when I thought all hope was lost, I was introduced to an amazing iPad/web application called Trello.
Trello is a very useful project management tool that can be used to “organize anything, together.” As the team leader, you can invite people to join your team. Once added, members can add and edit items for each “board”. The lists represent tasks that need to be completed for the project. You can make these lists as detailed as you want by adding deadlines, delegating responsibility, and tracking progress.
Anyone on the team can easily add a deadline to an item to emphasize by when a task should be complete. Once that deadline has arrived, members can have Trello send them email reminders.
A member’s name can easily be added to an item to represent who is responsible for each item. This allows teams to keep track of who’s working on what. Members can easily add comments or suggestions to each item. This definitely aids in the collaboration piece.
Lastly, members can track each other’s progress by creating to-do lists for each item. Once a sub-item is completed members can check that sub-item off. Trello automatically updates to visually reflect what percentage of each task is complete.
All in all, I’d say Trello is a very useful tool. The interface is very intuitive and conducive to group work. Trello can be used to make something as simple as a to-do list or something as complex as a senior capstone timeline. I’m excited to see what glorious things can be done with Trello as I embark on my senior capstone journey.
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