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Reply To: Co-Authoring in MS Professional and Integration w/ Planner

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I may be wasting my time posting this here but if, by chance, some of the Microsoft team reads this, I want to put this out there:

1) In developing any product, whether it be Project or any other product, the end user of the product is not necessarily the decision maker on whether or not to purchase/continue to purchase a product. In the case of Project, in many cases the decision maker(s) are the leadership team, not the PMs. And that leadership team has some vested interest in the product in that they likely want to use it to see what is going on with their projects at the 50,000ft level. We currently use Jira and have used Wrike for project management and I will tell you that one of the key problems with both of those products is that they are horrible at giving the PM tools to create a dashboard for the leadership team to get a good, easy window into what is going on with their projects. And what happens is, at some pt in the process, the leadership team sees that they aren’t getting the data they want out of their new shiny project management tool and then start questioning why they’re paying for that tool. And eventually it leads to trying something new in hopes that it can deliver that dashboard the leadership team wants. Wash, rinse, repeat.
2) Although web tools are nice for collaboration and sharing data, they are either lacking in functionality or they make it really hard to do anything of a complex nature. Compare creating dependencies in many of the Gantt tools(Smartsheet and Wrike, I am looking at you) vs. how they are created in the desktop version of Project. This also plays into item 1) above; if it’s too hard for leadership and/or infrequent users to get around and do anything, the product is DOA for the customer.
3) I will pay more for my power users(the PMs and other heavy project management users) for a subscription but I don’t want to pay for every end user that simply needs to update a task. One of the things that kills my interest in your product is if I have to pay the same subscription fee for a PM user as one of the developers that just adds notes and status to a task.
4) MS Planner is actually a very interesting tool. It’s clear they looked at Jira and said “wouldn’t it be useful to develop a product that gives 90% the functionality of Jira and have it live right inside of Teams”. I find that appealing for many of our small projects(let’s say a marketing project to get a new brochure out). Not really appropriate for a heavy hardware or software dev project, but really, that small marketing project is likely 80+% of the projects going on in any company.