Tuesday, March 11, 2014

In praise of Trello

As the outreach librarian for MWDL, I am a notorious list-maker. Not only does it help me keep track of my many tasks related to the Mountain West Digital Library but there is something so psychologically satisfying about crossing things off a list as proof of forward momentum.

Thanks to Cheryl Walters and the digital initiatives crew at USU, I have discovered my new favorite tool for making lists, Trello. Trello is the fastest, easiest project management tool I have ever used, especially for tracking projects that are relatively bound. This tool has been particularly useful to MWDL in recent weeks as we've been planning the MWDL Hubs Meeting which is taking place next Monday and Tuesday. Event planning is still new to the staff here at MWDL (myself included) and sharing a single Trello board for the event has been invaluable to our communication and organization.We can assign each other tasks, create checklists, and track our progress in a single location. Best of all, Trello allows us to move things from the "To Do" column to the "Doing" column to the "Done" column with satisfying swipes to the right. It is so much better than my usual checklists.

Our "Done" column on the right actually stretches down several pages
If you need simple project management for bound tasks, I highly recommend Trello. It does not replace long-term project management software like BaseCamp or JIRA. You won't find ways to create timelines or to combine projects into one location for long-term team planning. But it is the simplest and most effective tool I have ever used for short-term planning of discrete projects.

Thank you, Cheryl, for the recommendation!

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