Because of the lack of integrations, I have been looking for something to replace Liquid Planner with, and after seeing them, I could not stand to stop using Liquid Planner. I think that alone speaks volumes.
I think you would be foolish to not look at their product. And there you have it.
As a web development agency, I can tell you the one feature that has prevented me from using another product, that is their task estimating feature. Why nobody else does this is beyond me (full disclosure: a lot of things are beyond me) :)
When setting up a task you can actually estimate the time it will take the same way real people estimate tasks, with a time range. Who in the world ever hits their single estimate time targets all the time? NOBODY. With Liquid Planner you enter a range, 3 - 6 hours, 1-2 hours, etc. THAT IS A LIFESAVER FOR US.
Another concept of theirs called "packages" is also brilliant. There you can take tasks and bundle them up into "folders" that make sense to you, so you can look at your projects
The thing that I dislike the most is there are not many integrations with third party time keepers for tasks and billing programs. Harvest would be an example, as would many others. They have their own time tracker, but to use it you ahve to have the app open. Lose internet, forget about it. Working in a car or on the train without internet? Forget about it.
Also, their mobile app is not really of much value.
Through thoughtful design, LiquidPlanner has made a project management application that is a perfect fit for dynamic and collaborative teams. It could replace your current project, task, time management tools and company blog by integrating them all in a natural way.
Liquid Planner has a transparent way of making you be mindful of exactly how the team is using its precious time. Our company president pleaded with me to get it set up so that he could use it as a tool to help the partners understand the team's capacity. He wanted a convincing way to show why more projects could not be taken on without an increase in staff. Liquid Planner allowed me to do this within a day.
I feel like the Liquid Planner designers traveled into my mind to design the perfect project/task/time manager.
Having used many project management tools over many years, it's hard to not fall in love with LiquidPlanner. It feels like I've traveled to bizarro world where everything goes right.
I can now put together comprehensive projects faster than I can plan them in my mind. I've never had this experience (including with Excel). Simply put, I don't feel the interface slowing me down. It feels like all "busy work" has been removed.
I never thought I'd have a real-time schedule because of the requirements to maintain it, but LiquidPlanner delivers on this promise. Thank you. I'm embarrassed to say that "what if" scenarios are so easy and fast to do, I've developed stronger intuitive scheduling techniques without understanding exactly why they work. Am I now smarter or dumber?
If you are not the type to love the clock-in/out button on each task, you might be the type to get hooked on adding a few notes when you complete each task because your notes are shared in the team's "blog."
Introducing a new company-wide system is always hard, but you you can use Liquid Planner to replace your project management tools, time-tracking tools and company blog so that should help reduce the total number of systems.
Currently companies that need a fully-featured document library should stick with what they have. There is an API and the company has been aggressively releasing new features so maybe someday.
If you haven't experienced a lot of project management tools, you may not be as passionate about it as I am. Part of it's appeal is that it does what any other project management tool integrated with a company portal can do, but it does it fast and easy enough that it's actually worth using.
Really powerful, the gantt chart overview was really useful while our estimates were kept up to date. Project-focused organization allows us to keep a broad view of a complex project and tagging and export features are able to generate a variety of views of our data in an organized way.
Our executive team and eventually our developers stopped using it. Primary interface of the projects tab was too overwhelming & complex. No way to give teams a link that included the filters down to what they actually care about or give people a link to the exact view & set of filters that I was sharing during screen sharing. Not enough integration with external services (github, perforce, JIRA, bug tracking). Quite expensive. Overwhelming interface meant users didn't update tasks, which meant our data got out of date. Gantt chart stopped being accurate or useful and just got overwhelming. Dashboards could be made for visibility but didn't offer the teams opportunities to modify a limited view. Not easy enough to link to a specific task, or generate a new ticket in the right place with a simple link to a user-speakable identifier like a ticket-based system. Still great for people who are technically minded and want the big picture, not great for people who want a limited view of a subset of the project or are too busy to learn how to use the tool effectively.
Over the course of my career I have used a lot of PM software. I have used Project, Jira, Basecamp, Asana, and Trello in addition to LiquidPlanner. Out of all of them, LiquidPlanner is my PM software of choice.
LiquidPlanner is a powerful project management tool. It can be used to track tasks, projects, employee capacity, schedules, deliverables, and hours. I find that the most important and helpful feature of LiquidPlanner is its ability to track employee capacity and move estimated completion dates back if someone is overloaded. This is crucial if you are working in an environment with multiple projects going on at the same time who are obliged to share certain resources (2D artists, programmers, video editors, etc.)
At most I can think of only two cons related to LiquidPlanner
1. Setting up a project in LiquidPlanner is definitely time-consuming. Project managers will need to dedicate several hours to transforming their WBS information to something that works in LP. However, this is just a drain on PMs and not project team members.
2. In some environments it can be difficult to get employees to "buy-in" to LiquidPlanner and consistently update their hours and tasks. It's a behavior change and culture shift that must be encouraged and re-enforced regularly.
It's a great improvement over our prior way of working, but after a few years we still haven't perfected our system to get exactly what we needed. Ideally, the only manual steps would be timely tracking of work on tasks and revised estimates, but to get our needs met we've needed more manual work.
Prior to Liquid Planner, all of our client projects were in individual Microsoft Project files - which isn't ideal when you have shared resources. Now that we've used LP for a few years, we have much better visibility to work coming down the pike as well as potential conflicts/overbookings. However, the tool is only as good as the team's willingness to use it in a timely and accurate manner.
The nature of our business and projects is much more complicated than what is featured in the sales process. Clients have a role in the process, and delays on their part push out all our deliverables. This is hard to capture/manage in LP without additional manual updates by the project manager. Also, we've had to devise a bit of a workaround workflow to allow us to properly prioritize individual tasks across multiple projects - again, requires some manual management/movement of tasks. When any of the manual work falls by the wayside, the quality of the projections in LP is diminished greatly.
Full PM tool, time tracking, billing.
We've been using Liquid Planner for the last 5 years now and I can say that we are now managing 100% of our projects with it.
Building a platform like Potion is a lot of work in product design, marketing, development and customer support but Liquid Planner has been a huge help when it comes to managing our projects.
Whether it's dealing with our internal or customer projects, Liquid Planner (my guys call it LP) has been a huge help. We're using only part of the tools provided by LP, such as packages, tasks, attributions, deadlines, time tracking, resource planning and scheduling, but it's already bringing a huge providing us with both flexibility and structure.
The help resources are really thorough also and help us get the information we need to use it in an even better way.
Finally, and I think it's certainly one of the biggest strength of Liquid Planner, its support team is tremendous. All of our requests are always answered with concise and clear replies that push us forward.
As any PM tool, there is a learning curve and you need to get the team using it in the good way. Thankfully, the help resources are great.
One important benefit has been applying consistent project management protocols across different staffpeople, and forcing (or at least inviting) certain staffpeople to think comprehensively about project management rather than just haphazardly doing one task after another. One challenge is that our management team doesn't seem to use it to the degree they expect of staff, and this really disinspires many staffpeople to put in the time needed for the program to work effectively.
I find the project/task/checklist breakdown, assignable projects & tasks, and estimating & logging time very helpful. I appreciate the custom fields, tags, & in-project messaging w/ email compatibility. The dashboards & reports really help to quickly show the status of our various projects. A brilliant and complex product!
Unfortunately many of our staff find LiquidPlanner to be too high-maintenance. My organization has been at it for 2 1/2 years and we're still ramping up. I've probably invested a few hundred hours into onboarding and training, and it still takes more time to manage than the time-tracking spreadsheets we formerly used. It is also the case that all ships rise with the tide, so if some staffpeople don't pull their weight then the tool doesn't work as well for others.
LiquidPlanner is quite customizable with different ways to view tasks and many different screens to visualize things in alternative contexts. For a project manager on the business side, it allows for very powerful organization of multiple projects and teams, and many possibilities for scheduling and prioritizing tasks. It allows for flexible time tracking using range estimates and a simple time entry view.
It's easy to lose track of how many hours were actually approved for a task if you want to take advantage of the ability to re-estimate things on the fly. It can be slow to load and cumbersome to use. It can be difficult to find things in the overly complex Projects view. Search filters get reset every time you click a task link from someone else that doesn't match your existing filters. It's not always intuitive how to find things using the available search options (for example, unless you put the project name in every task title, searching for the project name doesn't do much good). Time entry takes a lot of clicks with recent updates if you need to add notes to each item. The API is complex to use (though powerful).
I love it, however, our devs and creatives find it frustrating to use despite large amounts of training and personalisation. There are a number of tools that would make this more helpful and less painful to the "doers".
Our business needs are well met, though there are other aspects that don't accomplish our requirements. Kanban, for example, as well as cross-team/project sprint planning whilst maintaining a weekly outlook.
Finally, with the latest price hikes it doesn't feel "good value" and I'm now faced with justifying the expense when before it was self explanatory. This is compounded by exchange rates.
I have recommended.
I like the meld of planning and projection.
I love the hi/lo estimations and the detail I can provide clients
Useability for doers, especially timesheets
Lack of integrations with SCM.
Poor connectivity/communication for my clients; their portals don't show custom fields, board views or timelines for tickets/tasks.
True Kanban is not feasible
Sprint-based planning for cross-team/project resource is not possible alongside weekly overviews
A desktop app would be great; especially for devs etc
The mobile app hasn't changed since we started using this in 2012 and is highly impractical.
Doesn't work well on ipads
The blend of waterfall and agile capabilities, with a solid Kanban. It is an excellent planning solution for large waterfall based projects and equally capable for agile with scrum projects.
For waterfall: It is far easier to use than MS Project or other such solutions that require manual control over dates. The priority based scheduling engine schedules based on priority of the task in the system's hierarchical order. While this is not always the most flexible, they provide numerous ways to control the prioritization with resource splitting, work caps, delayed starts, and dependencies. The time-tracking capabilities are impressive, and it easily integrates time, notes, and work items. The mobile solution is slick and works well.
For agile with scrum: Liquid Planner can be configured with fields to capture stories, acceptance criteria, and other elements related to stories. The kanban boards can be configured with a variety of stages.
While I agree with the priority based scheduling concept, and its implementation, I'd like a bit more flexibility to control my daily task list rather than having to rigidly follow what the schedule dictates I should be doing. Right now, the My Work section allows the user only to see their tasks in order of master schedule priority, which is not always the most logical order in which to work on a specific day. They do permit workarounds with the ASAP prioritization - which works well.
My other suggestions for improvement are:
- more granular control over alerts and feeds
- synchronization with Google/Outlook calendar (right now it requires manual calendar synchronization)
- Better reporting on agile with scrum, kanbans.
Liquid Planner is offering our business both a more consolidated approach to project management, as well as some features and functionality we didn't have before. Overall, I think it is helping our productivity.
It does a lot of things well. It offers a lot of advanced scheduling functionality for project managers. The Projects tab is incredibly powerful. Time tracking works well. Tagging people in comments is a useful feature.
Liquid Planner's interface is kind of slow for us (we have a lot of projects). The Home and My Work tabs aren't very useful to me--they never seem to show me the right subset of tasks, which is possibly due to the way we're organizing projects and tasks, which causes most people to use the Projects tab, which is powerful, but advanced and cluttered. API integrations work well enough, but the Zapier integration, in particular, is lacking much useful functionality in my opinion. For example, what if someone wanted to send a Slack notification to a particular person every time a task was assigned to them? Currently, either not possible or at least much more difficult than it could be.
We have been using LiquidPlanner for almost two years now. It is a good web solution that is relatively easy to use. We have had success in logging employee time against tasks, projects, and clients. It is a more robust tool than some of the basic project management tools on the market (or excel sheets). It does have some limitations that may or may not impact certain project management needs.
LiquidPlanner is a good tool for tracking employee time against tasks and projects. We use this LiquidPlanner for tracking time associated with specific projects and clients.
With any tool, there are some limitations. LiquidPlanner does a decent job of reporting and dashboarding by project. For our organization, reporting and dashboarding by client and/or by month is more important. Unfortunately, there is not a good solution in LiquidPlanner to help us with this. The solutions that exist are clunky and/or partial. LiquidPlanner has the ability to create shared tasks which is a great feature. This allows multiple employees to be on the same task. Unfortunately, schedule timelines and priorities do not calculate well when using shared tasks. It's better for every employee to be on their own task for schedule timelines and priorities to calculate properly.
Overall my experience has been good, but frustrating. It took a lot of effort and time to build out the templates I needed, and getting the team to adapt it has been a roller coaster. There are a lot of functionalities I haven't gotten to explore yet, because most of my time has been spent on maintenance of projects. That is just for my situation though, and I don't have a ton of extra time to devote to expanding my usage of reports and dashboards. I would really like to set up dashboards, I just haven't had time.
I like that it allows me to make templates for projects, it really makes it a lot easier to start a project off.
I also love that I can make custom fields, it really helps me to capture all of the important data for our type of process.
Plus, everybody can choose which fields they see on their project dashboard, it helps to make sure each person only sees what is important to them and nothing superfluous.
I really wish there was the capability to collaborate on documents - that really would make this the perfect tool. I have asked multiple times about that, but I don't think it is in the plan to add anytime soon. You can add a link to a cloud based shared file, but nothing on internal servers. Just adds an additional step to complete work.
In my organization, we have a shared pool of resources and several project managers. Using Liquid Planner lets all the PMs see the whole picture in a very interactive way. No secrets here! This tool really helps us to schedule in a collaborative way which is much more productive than arm wrestling for resources.
Very easy to use, but also robust project planner. The priority-driven schedule makes getting a snapshot of your overall project a breeze. Not making your dates? Rearranging the priorities of tasks simply by drag and drop to see the outcome. Reporting is easy and offers many options and the dashboards are very helpful.
I do wish there were more reporting options to allow greater customization. I know they have an API for this sort of thing, but I don't want to dig into that. Just a few more fields, options and customization opportunities would be nice. I do have to say that their support team is always very interested in hearing about customer wants and needs, so to be fair, I have not actually requested any of these reporting wish list items yet.
I couldn't do my work every day without Liquid Planner. I am constantly referencing it and using it throughout the day.
I like the way we can use this as a project management, time tracking, and a scheduling platform. So many other tools I've used only address one of these vital areas.
The timers on each task are one of my favorite features of Liquid Planner. It makes it so easy to track time and see how accurate estimates really are on a given task or set of tasks. You can easily view progress, see overruns and areas of concern (there's a red fire icon), and put as many details in the actual task as you need. You can link tasks together, create dependencies, and perform other actions to get a realistic view of a project.
Sometimes it is difficult to set up scheduling the way our company needs it to be represented. However Liquid Planner always seems to be putting out new features and their support team is very helpful in trying to help their clients find solutions.
We use LP to manage multiple concurrent client projects. With several project managers sharing resources, it is vital to have visibility into resource availability and potential schedule conflicts. Because of the extremely long duration of our projects (with heavy work in the beginning, then intermittently for months to years afterwards), it took us some time to develop a workflow that would allow for prioritization of individual tasks rather than projects as a whole. But we've come a long way from using stand alone MS project files! Time tracking directly on the task has also been very beneficial for more accurate tracking and billing of work.
Flexibility, ability to manage multiple concurrent projects
Our need for prioritization by task (rather than project) can make it challenging to get tentative timelines in front of a client that are still reasonably accurate. Would love to see a 'timekeeper only' user license option, would like to be able to track time against checklist item
We use LiquidPlanner for all of out time-tracking, project-planning, and task management. It took us a while to get to a point where we were using it to its fullest potential, but it was worth the effort to do so. I definitely recommend it.
Liquid Planner has many robust features and is incredibly flexible. There are so many different ways to find and view tasks that anyone will be able to configure their setup to work for them. Everyone on our team uses LiquidPlanner in the way that works best for them. We have users that use the "My Work" view, users that live in the projects timeline, and users who do all their work in the "card" view. The flexibility of LiquidPlanner is really the best feature.
LiquidPlanner does a LOT of things, so it can have a pretty steep learning curve. My company has used the software for nearly 5 years and we still don't use it to its full capacity. It's well worth learning the software because the payoff is huge once you have it configured.
I used this product for myself, because the firm I work for uses Microsoft Planner (free) which is crap. Liquid Planner isn't perfect, but it's one of the best out there. I like that it schedules my time for me. My main complaint is that you cannot assign clients to tasks like you can for projects. It is obviously optimized for companies that work on very large, involved projects, whereas, I do many short, discrete projects - like writing a NR or a newsletter. I set these up as tasks because it isn't worth the time to set up a project. Then, I have to nest them inside a project folder to assign them to a client. Frustrating
Excellent time tracking and scheduling features, bonuses like setting dependencies, and comprehensive analysis and reporting features.
Optimized for large, involved projects and as a result the Task designation isn't as helpful as it might be. Needs richer functionality in Tasks for short projects where it isn't worth setting up a project folder.
We are an academic publisher. Our company has used LiquidPlanner for over 3 years to manage the progress of publishing a book from acquisition to publication and beyond. It is feature rich and would be of great use to those who need granular management of multiple projects with multiple team members. We did not need many of the advanced features but have still found the core application to be incredibly useful in our daily workflow. Gone are the days of inter-departmental memos and back and forth email threads.
The learning curve was a bit steep for our employees. To be fair, this was their first exposure to an online project management system. Once we were able to pare the numerous features down to the very basics, they were able to intuit how the system worked without being overwhelmed by the multitude of features that were not useful to our workflow.
We have been able to keep our team small and nimble by utilizing LiquidPlanner to balance the workloads of our team members. We have been able to 'budget' resource hours of projects as much as 18 months in advance to forecast whether or not we need to grow our team.
This project management software has been transformational for our team of 15 people. The ability to assign people that do a variety of different tasks within a larger project is certainly what I wold expect from a project management application. However, the ability to make sure that the our people are not overbooked and that we are properly utilizing the skills of all of our team members is what separates this application from other project management applications I have used in the past.
It takes some time to get used to the way this software works and there was a good amount of trial and error when we first adopted it.
We have tried various project management softwares and this one allowed us to customize the process in a way the others didn't allow. Packages to organize the different projects and task is very helpful. Being able to create custom tags or attributes on tasks has also been very valuable.
This software has completely changed the way we complete projects. It has added clarity and helped us determine where we need to focus to improve the process. Being able to create reports and dashboards to see the information more clearly is very helpful! This software is reliable and accessible anywhere you can log in to the site, which is also very useful for employees who work remotely.
I have very little to say about this software negatively. I would love to see more options for the dashboards to allow even more customization, but there is already a lot available.
I find the concept to be the best way to manage projects, but the interface, lack of costumizability causes an unnecessary interface complexity. There are so many items and features that could be hidden from the average user.
But the biggest down side to the service is the complete lag of a notification system, making the task chat risky and out dated.
I also find the price tag to be too high, especially for smaller innovators and teams. But I guess you prefer big clients and not small clients.
The mobile app unfortunately is a very sad story, would love to use it but it is so slow and out of date that I find it unusable.
The project planing and the system as a hole
If a task has multiple people on it, is set to 'work in order', everyone sees the Task in their 'My Work'. But if the person(s) before you on that task have not marked themselves 'done' you should not start on your portion of the task. Can you not show these tasks until you are the active worker on the task? You could add a capability in the filters to turn this off, just in case someone is searching for tasks that they are on but are not currently with them.
Ease of use, intuitiveness
If you are on a task marked 'work in order' you see the task in 'My Work' even though you are not the current person (i.e. people before you have not marked themselves 'done'). Can you set 'My Work' to normally only show tasks where you are currently active? You could allow the user to set the filters to see all tasks they are on, in case they would like to see tasks where they are not yet active.
We turned to LiquidPlanner as we needed a way to handle a lot of projects and clients in one place, with multiple members of staff assigned to each, all tracking time against different tasks within a project.
LP enables us to analyse staff performance, billable hours logged against a task, project or client and apportion resources accordingly. It's central to our business and also means we can provide transparency and accuracy to clients when reporting on what work we have done for them.
Our staff find it helps them to manage their workload, collaborate and understand dependencies easily. It takes a little time for new starters to get used to clicking the button to time everything they do, but the benefits are enormous for us as an agency.
Per-seat licensing gets expensive as the team grows or if you use a lot of freelancers.
Some quirks to the interface, could be more intuitive.
LiquidPlanner is a very complete software for managing projects, time spent, people, clients and analyzing the overall performance of your company. It has a lot of different functionalities. You'll probably never use all of them, since the system is so complete it has different features for different needs of all kinds of companies. We work with advertising and LP is invaluable in our day to day life. Customer support is rarely needed, but when it is, they are fast, polite and helpful. Having compared LP to other project management software, I can say I've never found one that adapts itself to our needs as much as this one.
Very large feature set, great support.
It's almost perfect, but there are some features I do miss and since it's so complete, sometimes it can be difficult to learn how to use a tool for the first time.