Organizations that have a distributed, remote and hybrid workforce are expected to adapt to a faster pace in completing tasks and resources that are ever changing in availability. With priorities for projects constantly changing and workers transferring to different organizations, it is critical to provide an accessible and productive work experience. A clear and adaptable work plan with defined tasks and activities is the first step to enable effective collaboration, not only between team members but across departments. Organizations looking to optimize work planning should consider adopting a work management platform, defined by Ventana Research as a unified process to plan and execute work with activities and tasks using the allocated resources available.
Workfront is a work management platform that was originally founded in 2001 by Scott Johnson, and in November 2020, Adobe announced that it had acquired Workfront. Adobe Workfront is work management software that regulates workflows to deliver a personalized experience that promotes collaboration and efficiency. Organizations often have projects that span multiple departments; however, due to incoordination, information can become disjointed. Project information must be manually updated for each department, which can leave room for human errors and delays. With Workfront Fusion, web-based applications can connect to Workfront’s unified software and automatically sync and update to reflect changes. Workfront Scenario Planner is another feature that can plan execution, next steps and what-if situations. Multiple scenarios can be created and placed side by side to compare the impacts on resources, budgets and initiatives. Scenarios can be created with initially limited information; then, as the process moves forward, further details can be added to reflect precise information on planning timelines, resource allocation and more. The proofing and approval process can also be simplified using Adobe Workfront. Proofing often includes multiple stakeholders that might require conflicting requests, causing an extended revision process and duplicated versions. To address this, Workfront includes online proofing solutions that allow all stakeholders to review and comment on one document, which in turn speeds up the approval process. With version 23.2 of the product, releasing April 2023, Workfront will provide methods for visualization of work in what they call Story Points and use of ”cards” that best represent projects and activities with the ability to manage more directly. In addition, new mobile support and further integration with Adobe products, such as Creative Cloud, are available.
Adobe Workfront offers a personalized experience that manual tools like spreadsheets cannot offer. For example, features can be customized to use specific work methodologies, such as Gantt, Scrum and Agile. Organizations can adjust Workfront to meet the needs of their workforce, rather than having workers adapt to the software. The uptick of remote work has resulted in several obvious benefits for organizations related to productivity and focus on work, rather than coworkers and workplaces; however, processes such as project planning still require collaboration across teams. Adobe’s strategic acquisition of Workfront during the initial round of global stay-at-home orders demonstrates Adobe’s investment in the future of virtual work.
The era of virtual workspaces has resulted in more efficient collaboration and faster completion of tasks and projects. Organizations will have to reevaluate their work management platforms to examine whether traditional workflows include the advantages of modern systems. Ventana Research asserts that through 2025, one-half of organizations will invest in work experiences and prioritize work management technologies that optimize use of time for task and activity execution.
It is important that business processes keep pace with current digital trends to compete in the market. By introducing Adobe Workfront into the workplace, organizations can streamline workflows across one department or multiple departments by using one of the three packages available: Pro, Business and Enterprise. The product can also integrate with other Adobe Experience Cloud products, such as Photoshop and InDesign, to provide a smooth collaboration experience. Workfront can also natively integrate with G-Suite, Microsoft Outlook and other software. Organizations with a structured work approach for supporting a productive and agile workforce can respond to sudden demands and provide precise planning to give customers peace of mind. Preparation using a well-equipped work management platform can be a key differentiator in the marketplace.
Workfront was instrumental in advancing the automation of work management, specifically for businesses; it is not just another project management tool. What has not been clear is how it is advancing the intelligence in guiding how work is done and identifying issues that might be undermining potential accomplishment of milestones due to a myriad of factors. In managing work, resources need to be efficiently distributed to ensure the workforce is engaged in what is expected, and time must be allocated to conduct tasks that are structured to outcomes in projects. By implementing traditional methods of project management, organizations might be wasting time or inefficiently allocating resources. Work management platforms such as Adobe Workfront can help mitigate this by focusing on how resources are utilized in the course of work being done and not just how project managers design projects.
Organizations should examine their current approach toward managing work across a variety of tasks and projects, or even email and spreadsheets that need to be minimized to manage work efficiently. Organizations that invest in work management are investing in their workforce and ensuring work is intelligently conducted. Adobe is a key provider in this market category and should be examined when considering improvements to managing work and resources to goals and expected delivery timeframe of tasks and activities.