LiquidPlanner was founded in 2006 and launched their first release to a public beta in 2008. It claims to be the industry’s only priority-based, predictive online project management solution which allows users to express uncertainty in their task estimates using ranges.
More about LiquidPlanner
- It is a hosted, software-as-a-service (SaaS) solution
- Employs a probabilistic scheduling engine that is claimed to build more accurate schedules
- A free trial is offered along with 3 price plans based on number of members and features included
- LiquidPlanner is ideal for teams who want the scheduling capabilities of sophisticated project software but need a simple, easy-to-use tool that everyone can access
Time can be tracked across projects, tasks and portfolios. You can set timers to record or simply enter hours on completed work which can be directly applied to time sheets. The work task lists are sorted by weeks and its as easy to add time to these tasks as it is to add tasks to your timesheet. Managers and team members can also submit, approve and comment on timesheets.
Conversations in LiquidPlanner are contextually associated with tasks and projects. So sharing information and ideas comes through commenting and other collaboration features built directly into the platform.
Standard in most project management software, but the integration into time scheduling and collaboration makes managing and prioritising work that much easier.
Clear dashboard views into multiple projects, allocations, burndowns and collaboration comments allow you to anticipate changes, allocate work more efficiently, and get a deeper understanding of potential problem areas.
Document storage and sharing
Virtually any kind of file can be uploaded to a specific task or project so nothing goes missing, and Dropbox, Google Drive or Box accounts can be integrated for additional document storage and collaboration. LiquidPlanner also supports Salesforce integration.
LiquidPlanner has a patented predictive scheduling engine that gets updated in real time, as you make changes. It gives you a predictive range of when projects and their tasks will finish based on probability distribution from that range and the relationships between tasks and people.
More about LiquidPlanner dashboards
Dashboards tend to be the hub of any project management software. This is where you should get the right kind of overview of all your projects and be able to get information easily and quickly to make decisions.
With LiquidPlanner dashboards, you can quickly check the health of your projects or get a quick summary of critical metrics, trends and schedule details. They are easy to set up and can be shared with other workspace members or external guests.
You set up any number of dashboards and they can be fully customised to show various task views, highlight the most important risks, time allocations as well as comment and discussion streams.
Dashboards are made up of widgets which pull the latest information from the project space into a consolidated view. These widgets include Upcoming Tasks, Analytics Tables, Donut Charts, Trend Charts, Notes, Documents, Comments and Images.
The LiquidPlanner dashboard interface also lets you drag and drop the widgets to position anywhere on the screen which is a very convenient feature.
Each widget has a number of configuration options including basic filters for dates, metrics, layouts and colours.
More sophisticated filtering includes the ability to control the content of a widget in the dashboard by person, client, status, location, tag or any defined custom field.
The dashboard framework in Liquidplanner is really one of its strongest features, and the ability to share them with individual people or groups, including clients will really boost your project communication capabilities.
The Learning Curve
I found the interface fairly easy to learn and it worked well in my Firefox browser. The navigation is well organised into logical sections and the colour scheme is easy on the eye. Adding projects, tasks and people is fairly straightforward if you have used other project management software like MS Project. It doesn’t look like the web interface is responsive in my mobile browser (iPhone Safari) though, which I found strange considering how much work has been put into this solution.
Liquidplanner offers a comprehensive help section to guide you through learning and managing the software. This includes a Getting Started guide, over 20 short videos, webinars, a developer forum and a stack of ebooks and other resources.
Mobile App support
Liquidplanner apps have been made for both IOS and Android tablets and phones with a limited feature set for interacting with your projects on the move. The Apps let you browse projects, participate in comment streams, view your tasks, track time, edit or create new tasks and view attached files among other things.
LiquidPlanner in summary
Liquidplanner is certainly one of the strongest contenders out there for a project management software solution:
- Strong feature set
- Intelligent scheduling engine
- Great dashboards
- Good collaboration features
- Mobile app support
- Free trial available
- Mobile app features a bit limited
- Software as a Service so can be slow if team members have connectivity issues
- Scheduling interface could be better
- May take time for basic users to learn
The best way to see if LiquidPlanner meets your needs is to take up the 14 day trial after looking through our guide to project management software features. Spend some time looking at it and decide for your self.