As a class of software, project management has never lived up to its full potential. There are, of course, people that swear by their project management applications. But by and large, most projects today are managed using spreadsheets or even pen and paper. So after all these years, there are still unresolved questions about not only what's wrong with project management in general, but also project management software specifically.
The folks at Genius Inside think they have the answer in the form of their namesake application, a project management application that was designed from the ground up to combine the ease of use of productivity applications with the collaboration capabilities inherently required by a project management application.
Genius Inside was originally developed in Europe for Lotus Notes environments, but today is also available as a service and can integrate with e-mail systems such as Gmail and Microsoft Outlook. It also integrates with other project management applications such as Microsoft Project.
The historic issue with project management software, says Genius Inside Managing Director Christophe Borlat, is that the majority of the software in this category has an enterprise heritage that is focused on a single user, as opposed to the collaboration heritage of Lotus Notes. As such, most project management software winds up becoming shelfware because what most customers want is something robust enough to track a project, while still being easy and flexible to use.
This latter point, said Borlat, is critical because no two customers have the same approach to workflow and project management. So whatever project management software they opt to use has to be both flexible and extensible.
Borlat says Genius Inside is just starting to get some notice in the U.S. after the recent release of version 6.6. Previously, Genius Inside, which is based in Switzerland, has been marketed mostly in Europe and Canada. Whether Genius Inside translates on this side of the pond remains to be seen. But one thing that is for sure, a new approach to project management is much needed.