Never before has it been so easy for small business owners to assemble teams of hardworking and talented people from around the globe. A PHP developer in Berlin, an applications team in India, and an SEO specialist in Australia all toil away while you shoot off emails from underneath a beach umbrella in the Caribbean (that is my fantasy, at least). Until something goes horrible wrong. Your PHP developer has unintentionally changed something and the only people who can fix it, the boys in Bombay, are asleep for the next eight hours. To make matters worse, your SEO specialist had previously scheduled a big ad buy that is live and directing potential customers to your fiery crash of a website .
Team management software that coordinates their actions could have prevented this small error from spiraling into a costly fiasco. But team management software is often expensive and difficult to learn. What small business owner wants to go through the trouble and expense of teaching their team a new software package? What SBOs need is a cheap, easy-to-use application that can help them get everyone on the same page. Even better if it can sync up with their WordPress-based website. That is where Asana comes in.
What Is Asana?
Asana is an application that allows users to create task sheets that can be shared with, and edited by, their team members. It is free for up to thirty authorized members of a user’s team, above which the user must switch to a “Premium Workspace”. For an idea of how to use Asana, take a look at their “How To Use…” videos.
Asana also offers a WordPress plugin that creates dashboard widgets that:
- Display items from the user’s Asana task sheet
- Allow the user to create tasks that are synced to the user’s task sheet
To get started with Asana, Sign Up for the service. You will only need your name and an email address (it doesn’t have to be one that is tied to your site). Once you have signed up, you can email your team members to register them as authorized users of the task sheet. And that’s it, you’re in and ready to start using the application. They will also start you off with an optional tutorial to get you acquainted with how the website works.
Integrate With WordPress
First, download and install their dedicated plugin. After installation, head to the Profile screen. At the bottom of that page you will see fields where you can enter the API Key and the name of the Workspace, as well as set the filters for which tasks you would like to have displayed:
To get the name of your API Key and Workspace, check the Account Settings in your Asana.com account. Enter that information in the above form and it will pull the relevant information from Asana.
Head to your Dashboard, scroll down, and you will see this:
“Make a to-do list” was a task I had earlier entered in the task sheet on Asana.com and which was transferred over on activation. When you want to create a task, you can find another widget, below the first, that will allow you to create tasks that will be immediately added to your Asana task sheet in both your WordPress site and Asana.com.
I and other reputable sources use Asana and like how intuitive and user-friendly the interface is. If you are looking for a different option for team management that also integrates with WordPress, CollabPress comes well-recommended.