Project Management for SMEs: tips, methods and tools

Tips on how to do project management for small businesses

To help you do project management in your small business, we have separated some tips that can help you. Follow:

Be agile

Small companies tend to have fewer collaborators and less complex projects, so it is possible to make project management more agile, without spending a lot of time on planning, but on execution. This agility helps companies not to spend such a large amount of money on employee work hours and not to miss deadlines, as any delayed project generates a very big impact for small businesses.

Divide a project into small deliveries

Some small companies are frightened by the complexity of the projects they need to carry out, so often the best way is to divide the project into small deliveries, so that the tasks are easier for everyone to understand. In addition to assisting the organization, this division also assists the manager in managing the project.

Improve communication

The planning and execution of a project requires constant communication between all parties involved, so it is very important to establish a unique communication channel, in which everyone can exchange information.

Train employees

In order to start implementing a project management culture, it is necessary to train employees . This practice is necessary both for the beginning of this new culture and for the implementation of tools and methodologies, as we will see later!

Keeping an eye on costs

As we told you before, it is necessary to prioritize some stages of project management over others, precisely observing the cost management in small companies. Any unnecessary expense can be a huge loss for the small business. Therefore, create a spending cap and divide tasks between employees in order to balance costs.

In addition to these tips for managing projects in small businesses, we have also separated some of the main methods that can be applied in small business. Find out what they are:

Methods for doing project management in small businesses

The world of project management is made up of a few methods. These methods are nothing more than models that aim to assist resources and managers in planning and executing the project.

It is not necessarily necessary to follow a method, however, it is usually easier that way, since they guide managers to do it in an already tested and proven way.

To help you, we have listed below some project management methodologies that you can use in your small business:


It is a project management methodology based on a generic management in Controlled Environments.

It divides project management into four elements:

  • Principles(guidelines that determine that the project will be executed according to the methodology).
  • Themes(aspects that must be addressed during project management).
  • Processes(processes that take place within the management for project execution)
  • Adequacy of the project environment(adapts the methodology to the context of the project).

The advantages of using PRINCE2 consist of: having a methodology that allows communication in common between all, possibility of integral monitoring of the project, has few techniques and does not include changes of idea during the execution of the project, which makes it ideal for small companies whose projects are not as complex and less subject to change in scope.


PMBOK® is a good practice guide for project management. It divides management into ten areas of knowledge:

  • Scope.
    • Schedule.
    • Cost.
    • Quality.
    • Resources.
    • Communication.
    • Scratchs.
    • Acquisitions.
    • Interested parts.
    • Integration.

PMBOK is a more traditional methodology and, therefore, it is also not agile enough to support changes in scope during the execution of the project.

It is also necessary to analyze each project before applying PMBOK. Not all projects will need management among all these areas of knowledge, especially those of low complexity, so it is necessary to choose among the most necessary.

The advantages of using PMBOK are: to improve the communication flow, optimize costs and use of resources and control all parts of the project effectively.


Scrum is an agile methodology for project management. It consists of dividing the project into small sprints (a set of activities that must be performed).

Each project also has a backlog, a list of everything that needs to be developed so that it reaches its result.

The advantages of using Scrum are to allow changes during the execution of the project. It allows you to start a project even without even knowing how your result will be.


Kanban is another method of agile management. A kanban is nothing more than a picture with three columns: making , making and done .

This method is simple and ideal for smaller teams with less maturity for a more sophisticated methodology. Kanban’s focus is on task management to arrive at the project’s outcome.

As we can see, there are many methodologies for project management. However, for project management to work fully it is also necessary to use the best tools.

How to choose tools for project management in small businesses

To help you choose an online project management tool , we have separated a list of aspects that you should observe when choosing the best tool to manage your small business projects. Check out:

Not too complex, not too simple

Many project management software has very complex features, which can be more of a hindrance than helping your company. In contrast, some tools have little functionality and you are likely to miss something. So choose a tool that fits your needs in the right measure, neither too complex nor too simple.

Choose a company with experience in Project Management

If your company is going to start in this world of project management, you will certainly need help. Therefore, choose a tool offered by a company with experience in project management, which can help you to implement and manage effectively.

Tool should facilitate online communication

Remember we talked to you at the beginning about how important communication is to manage a small business project? So choose a tool that enables a much more agile and centralized online communication, so you can control everything that is being discussed and interfere when necessary. In addition, a tool with support for online communication can facilitate the sharing of ideas and files.

Online schedule

It doesn’t matter the size of the project or the company: it will always be necessary to develop a schedule to divide the tasks that will be performed according to a period of time. A schedule will allow the organization of the team and the possibility of viewing the deliveries by the project manager. Therefore, choose a supported online software to insert a schedule and manage it.

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