If you’re a US citizen, 74% of Americans use social media. This number jumps to 89% if you are under the age of 29. It’s 2014, folks, and it’s now that project managers need to start tweeting.

Can social media really help projects to stay on track? Yes, social media can help projects stay on track. Team communication is key to a project’s success. Take advantage of the many tools online for you and your team.

Social media is more than sharing what you ate for breakfast.
Software companies are learning that project managers need to share and get a lot of information. Slack and Insightly are project management software that syncs with popular sites such as Twitter. You can also use hashtags to tag your projects.
I could tweet, “Just finished researching for my blogpost!” #CapterraBlog14 would allow me to tweet that I have just finished researching my blogpost and let my project manager know that I am only a few hours away of producing a draft. You can also click the hashtag #CapterraBlog14 to see the updates made by other writers on SEO, design changes, and training new staff. These updates are all in 140-character bursts. These tweets may be accessible to the public, but Twitter allows users to send private tweets that are only available to a small group of people.
Social media for project management lets users communicate milestones and achievements, but also allows them to create a “flexible space” for their progress. Michael Klynstra rightly points out that project managers can use blogs or wiki pages to track progress. This could be a great alternative to project management software. It can be helpful to keep a record of the problems and solutions that were encountered during the project. The blog or wiki can also be used to train new employees and encourage the whole project team to keep up to date on the changing parts of a complex project plan.

The days of everyone working in one office are long gone. One-in-five Americans now work from home at most one day per week. However, a study suggests that this number will rise to 63% by 2018. Social media can be used to connect telecommuters with the in-office team, not only professionally but also emotionally. Social media allows people to share a little bit of their personality online. This makes telecommuters feel like they are working with real people and not an anonymous body far away.
Social media allows project managers to communicate with their team in a dynamic manner through social media. Are you comfortable with YouTube? Use it! Podcasts? Talk it up! Even if it’s simply information sharing, the traditional meeting doesn’t need to take place in the office. Video can make status updates more interesting and allow for people to be identified, fostering a closer-knit group.
Finally, you can use social media to promote the project. Consider what social media could do for your company and you if it can force the Filipino president to resign in 2001. Crowdsourcing is the best use of social media. Crowdsourcing is a great way to get help for your project. To share your ideas, use LinkedIn and Facebook groups. Use hashtags to start a conversation. Subscribe to the channels that are relevant to your project. This will help you market your company and help you facilitate your project.
Are you using social media for your projects? Are you able to get distracted or do you see it as an asset? What advice would you give to people who have never used social media in their projects? Comment below to share your thoughts!
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