AI can be used in many different industries and can help a project manager be more efficient.
You may be asking yourself, “What exactly is AI?” or “How can AI help me in managing my projects?”. AI stands for Artificial Intelligence and refers to the development of computer systems that can perform tasks that have typically required human intelligence. These tasks include learning, reasoning, problem-solving, and perception. Alexa and Siri are two examples of AI that you may be familiar with and may use. AI can be used for all kinds of things, whether you are just trying to find out more information on a certain topic or trying to manage a project.
AI is being used in many different industries, including healthcare, finance, transportation, and manufacturing. It can help a project manager be more efficient by performing repetitive tasks, leaving the project manager to focus on more important tasks. It can be used to record notes in meetings, organize them after the meeting is over, and provide a list of follow-up items. AI can quickly analyze large amounts of data giving project managers quick insights into complex sets of data. Using AI for certain tasks can also eliminate human error that could cause you to miss a project deadline. All of these tasks can save your team time and money. “AI acts like an extra pair of hands in the case of project management, ready to assist your teams with their mundane tasks and offer solutions before problems arise. Embracing this technology can give you a competitive advantage even in the most demanding industries.” 1
Using AI can help you monitor a project’s progress in real-time. For example, I have used Microsoft (MS) Project to monitor the status of project tasks. I would receive status updates from everyone weekly, then update MS Project, then send out a status report to management. By the time the updates were received, the status may have already changed. “AI systems process data in real time, providing managers with timely insights and alerts that will allow them to make the necessary changes on the spot. By taking into account information such as deadlines, schedules, or how a team completes tasks, the system can immediately show a project’s progress at any time.” 1
Below are a few of the ways AI can help in the management of your projects:
- Task Automation – Scheduling of tasks, resources, and timelines
- Decision Making – Providing insights for better decision making based on data analysis
- Communication – ChatGPT can be used as a virtual assistant, handling inquiries, scheduling meetings, and facilitating communication and collaboration among team members
- Documentation – Assist in generating project documentation and organizing documents
- Risk Management – Identifying potential risks by analyzing project data
- Resource Allocation – Optimizing resources by considering the skills, availability, and workload of team members
- Performance Monitoring – Monitoring project performance and providing real-time feedback on key metrics
- Quality Assurance – In software development projects, AI can be used for automated testing, helping ensure the quality of deliverables
One popular project management tool that is incorporating AI into it is Smartsheet. This tool uses generative AI tools, like ChatGPT, to help their customers become more efficient by eliminating manual tasks associated with collaborative work. Customers of Smartsheet can use the recommendations AI that powers ‘Suggested Items’ or the advanced image recognition AI that extracts all sorts of information from every image in the Smartsheet platform for Digital Asset Management. AI also helps users be more creative by using generative imagery. “Smartsheet users who are using content to build a dashboard, craft a campaign, or customize a template need ways to self-serve so they don’t have to always ask a designer for help creating content.” 2
When integrating AI into your business or project, it is important that the technology aligns with human values, ensuring AI solutions are useful and effective. “This focus on well-being can transform business outcomes, leading to increased efficiency, innovation, and stronger human connections, both within the organization and with its customers.” 3 As you can see, AI can be used in a lot of different ways in the business world and it can provide significant benefits to project management, acknowledging that human oversight remains crucial. Data privacy, security and the ethical use of AI should be considered when implementing AI in project management. By integrating AI into your project management processes, you can streamline workflows, reduce manual efforts, and increase the overall effectiveness of the delivery of your projects.
Keller Schroeder has a team of experienced project managers available to help you manage your projects on a full or part-time basis, including several who are certified through the Project Management Institute (PMI). These certifications ensure you are getting well-qualified, experienced individuals to manage your projects. Click here for more information on our Project Management group.