We will soon start a research project (longitudinal study for 2-3 years) with a team of 7 (+ interns).
I think these are pretty prototypical conditions for psychological research.
requirements clash with business-oriented project management tools
- flat hierarchy, so tasks aren't usually assigned by a superior
- unusual working hours – most workers are student helps that work part time and a lot of our assessments (the main time-eating work) will take place after the usual 9to5
- so we would try to find someone who is free that afternoon to conduct an assessment session quite often – this entails keeping people in the loop without email ie. text messages
- we would like to track hours
- we'll share a lot of scientific literature and might collaborate in tagging, excerpting etc.
some custom stuff is needed
We're almost sure that we'll need to program our custom solution for organizing the assessments. We need all participants to choose possible dates and as soon as 4 participants choose the same date and someone is available to lead the assessment session, the date should be blocked, they should be notified and also reminded by text messages. It's kind of like doodle.com+tetris - probably to specific?
my main question
- Do you know of a project-management tool that makes sense for such an environment?
- Are we better off
- mixing different purpose-built web apps (we now use Gmail, GoogleGroups, Dropbox, Zotero, Google Calendar, Google Docs + would need some sort of time tracker),
- risk redundancy (Dropbox ∩ Docs ∩ Zotero ∩ Gmail) and
- lose integration (it would be great to have something that is both calendar and time tracker, but maybe we should at least stay with the Google products that are somewhat integrated) ?
- Is there a third way? I found Charm and cloudHQ which promise to integrate Dropbox and project management. Charm doesn't add much value and cloudHQ is still in alpha. But I generally like the idea to assemble my much-used tools into something less redundant and better integrated.