Can AtTask really be worth the time and money it requires? Short answer. Yes.
June 04, 2014

Can AtTask really be worth the time and money it requires? Short answer. Yes.

Sam Montoya, CSM | TrustRadius Reviewer
Score 9 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User

Software Version

Spring 2014

Overall Satisfaction with AtTask

Currently we are using AtTask within the Corporate office as a Land and Expand model. This will be used as a change management tool initially as it sets in as a project management and workflow management tool. The tool solves the problem of transparency as well as overall communication between team members and projects. The initial launch is focusing on each portion of the tool on a small scale for proof of concept and then increasing use going forward.
  • Since this is a project management tool, it does this portion exceedingly well. It allows all the basics, but also incorporates both Waterfall and Agile methodologies into the tool. Depending on the type of project being handled, this allows for an increased flexibility and if need be, a hybrid model combining the two.
  • The ability to use custom fields within the system and the ability to report on anything within the system is very powerful. If there is specific data you need captured on something, you can create a custom form to capture that data and then report on it. This allows the ability to create custom data sets which can funnel up into a dashboard that can be shared with management at any time. No longer do you need to manually prepare these reports, they can automatically be triggered to go out on a specific day, time, and format.
  • Once you get the hang of how it works, the queue and request system can be a very powerful process. As Teams are set up within the system, a queue can be created where work requests can be funneled into and then worked on by that Team. Depending on how you want workflows to be done, you can set up approvals, you can add that issue/task to a project (software release as an example), you can even reassign it to another Team or individual. It is a natural extension of the tool and how it can create intake processes for work.
  • This isn't directly related to the tool itself, per se, but it's relating to the people behind the tool. The people that work with you to implement the tool and the ongoing support you have going forward. This was a huge USP for us as a company. An example in contrast would be SharePoint. You purchase the tool, get it loaded, and that's really about it in terms of support. You had the instructions on how to load the software on your onsite systems. You either learn by trial-by-error or you hire someone to come in and help you configure. There's also no support in making the tool successful within the company with a high adoption rate and user engagement.
  • AtTask on the other hand, they have consultants come on-site and work with you to make sure that the tool is configured correctly and that you are creating workflows that work. You can bounce your ideas off of them as well as get their input on best practices. If they aren't sure or don't know the best way to solve your problem, they will find out. In addition to this, they also have packages that allow for additional consulting time beyond the initial configuration. You have that ongoing support to ensure high adoption rates and increasing successful change management.
  • Lastly, AtTask's training has been monumental in teaching the core team of users. Although the training can be viewed as "long", the full time is utilized and you're constantly engaged in learning within the tool using a sandbox environment. The Fundamentals class gets users up to speed on using the tool and making sure that all questions are answered. They also offer an "office hours" training that can be attended in case you came up with a question afterwards and would like to get an answer. Their training, again, helps with an increased adoption rate as well as improving change management success.
  • AtTask is relatively hyper focused on what it does and doesn't stray too far from those core objectives. If you're looking for larger storage spaces (in terms of documents and attachable items), you're best using a cloud storage solution. You are able to purchase additional storage space within your instance of AtTask, but you'd need to touch base with them for additional details regarding that. This is one area that I have mixed feelings about. It does, however, create awareness of what you are uploading as opposed to uploading everything imaginable.
  • Although the reporting is very robust the variety from which you're able to combine data is quite impressive. One feature that is missing in that is the ability to email dashboard contents outside of the system. For example, you have a dashboard that you'd like to share with a third party to give overall health on a particular project (and they are not on the system for whatever reason). You won't be able to share that dashboard with them, you won't be able to create a public link to view the dashboard, nor can you create a PDF of that dashboard. You can technically print the page and save as a PDF and then send it that way, however, most of the functionality that regular reports have are not found with dashboards.
  • Lastly, although this feature is coming up in an upcoming iteration, the ability to have cascading selections when creating requests and custom forms. Cascading forms allow for dynamic content, depending on what selections are chosen. This would allow greater flexibility with in the request system, which currently requires setting up varying queues to capture the same content that could be done using cascading features. This would also decrease the amount of queues that are kept, depending on workflows that have been created.
  • This section is currently still being formulated so hard numbers currently don't exist. Time will tell on this one, but estimates based upon workflow improvements alone, the break-even point could be as soon as six (6) months.
This comes down to what I mentioned in the pluses of the tool. Out of the box it had more things pre-done so you could literally use it day one if you wanted to. Not recommended since more of the functionality needs to be configured, but day 1 it could be used. SharePoint and Project Online are both great tools, but the amount of configuration to get it to do what was needed wasn't worth the time spent in comparison to using a tool that already had it built in. The last reason was the overall support given in making sure the tool was understood, utilized, and promoted within the company pushed it over the top in comparison to other options.
With the company's commitment to the tool and ensuring that it, ultimately, is used company-wide will ensure that the tool continues to be used. Which leads to the tool being renewed. With the amount of support behind it from both sides of the fence, the success of the tool will only increase. Committing to the tool was the first step in that process to ensure the change would be successful.
AtTask is a great project management and workflow management tool. It also takes care of portfolio and program management as well, which are part of the project management ecosystem. This is where AtTask shines and where I would suggest it being implemented. If you're looking to go beyond those areas, it may be possible to implement AtTask, but you may want to look more towards another solution that specifically handles what you're working to solve. An example of this would be trying to use AtTask as a Customer Relationship Management (CRM) tool. Technically, you probably could shoehorn a CRM into AtTask, but that's not what it was designed to handle. You're better off using Salesforce or something similar in that scenario.