There are more tools in the average workplace now than ever before and Tool abundance has become the status quo. And it’s costing you and your teams time and effort.
This status quo is enforced by two camps. The first camp believes in finding and creating a single source of truth by forcing a single tool across the organization. This works in theory; if everyone’s in the same tool, you don’t need to worry about anything slipping through the cracks. That said, work management tools are rarely one size fits all. It might be a matter of functionality, like robust analytics or the ability to use emojis. 🍏 It can also just be personal preference — which isn’t something you should ignore. Either way, trying to get everyone in the same tool can cause problems.
The other camp allows multiple tools but doesn’t have a plan to integrate them. That means each department — even the teams within that department — might have their own tool. So whenever you need to work with another team, you have to figure out who’s going to hop into the other person’s tool or set someone up as a middleman. Each approach leads to a host of problems and lost time for managers, who usually find themselves stuck between teams trying to collaborate.
Where managers lose time
When you work with teams who use multiple tools, you’re constantly flooded with notifications, messages, updates, comments, and submissions at all hours. Multitasking between multiple tools throughout the day means you’ll be spending more time dealing with these distractions than working on your initiatives.
Having to constantly jump between tools leads to something called context switching. You’re getting pulled out of what you’re doing, and it can take up to 25 minutes to get back to task after being interrupted. That’s probably why some days you feel like you’re not getting anything done.
Weekly data entry
This may be the worst part of using multiple tools. Say you’re managing a project involving two teams: marketers and developers. The former works in Asana while the latter uses Jira. Unless you can get them to agree on which tool they should use — good luck — someone’s going to have to make sure information is kept up to date on both sides.
Usually, that’s the project manager’s job, unless someone gets hired specifically for this role. Either way, it means some middleman is going to spend up to a day, every week, just copying information from one place to the other.
Throwaway status reports
Every project has its stakeholders. Being a project or product manager means keeping them in the loop is your responsibility. When the information you need is spread out over multiple teams, that means you’re spending tons of time preparing and creating reports for upper management. Those reports will be received, consumed, and discarded in a fraction of the time it took you to draft them.
There’s nothing wrong with getting everyone involved in a project in the same room once in a while. Maybe you want to run a brainstorm, a kickoff, or a hackathon. These can help kickstart creativity, boost morale, and bust through tough blockers.
But having to meet every week just to go over updates can be a slog. You have to find a time that works for everyone, get them together, and make sure everyone pays attention the whole way through. And if you’re doing these meetings remotely, you could very well be paving the road to Zoom fatigue.
How syncing your tools saves you time
You don’t have to accept the time-wasting status quo. When you use a workflow management solution, you turn your tools into building blocks for your workflow rather than the blockers that keep teams from doing their best work. At its core, a workflow management solution like Unito is about making sure everyone can work in the tool they need while collaborating with other teams. And that saves managers time. How?
When you use Unito, updates, notifications, messages, tasks, and comments are automatically synced between tools. That means everyone gets live updates in a single channel: their tool. You can also use rules to control what gets synced, lowering the overall number of notifications you get during your day.
Curious how this works in practice? Check out this case study, where we talked to Megan Baptista of My TC Concierge, who uses Unito to control and automate the flow of information for new real estate transactions.
Consistent information across tools
No more copying information from one tool and pasting it into the other. You stay in your tool, they work in theirs, and everyone has access to the information they need.
That’s why John Fuller, a project manager and Scrum leader at the University of Oregon’s Educational and Community Supports Department uses Unito. He was spending a full day each week just copying information from Asana into Jira and vice versa. After setting up Unito, he could quit the busy work and get back to changing lives.
An end to the status reports
With Unito, you don’t just get to avoid writing status reports; you can empower stakeholders to get their own updates. By building a workflow with Unito, you can set your tools up so key updates are synced from the tools where that work happens to the tool your stakeholders use. They can pop in whenever they have questions, and talk directly to whoever’s taking care of that task.
Managers at Coveo were getting frustrated because key teams were working in different tools. Updates weren’t coming fast enough, and they needed a solution. That’s why they set up Unito, so that everyone could access the information they needed when they needed it.
Meet only when you want to
Do you like having a calendar that’s booked solid?
Many managers try to fix alignment and visibility problems by booking more meetings. Unfortunately, that leaves little time for anyone to get any work done. It’s even worse for those who frequently collaborate with other teams; they’re stuck in alignment meetings all day. With a workflow management solution, you can maintain alignment asynchronously. You can have fewer meetings, and still give everyone access to the updates they need.
Indigenous Pact is one such organization. Their workflow relies on two teams that work in different tools, and the sheer speed of the work they do means everyone needs to have the right information at their fingertips. Find out how they used Unito to make that happen.
How much time will you save?
Imagine a day with no meetings, no dinging of notifications, and no progress reports to draft. How much could you get done then? Start your Unito trial today, build your first workflow, and you just might find out.