Team collaboration on a shoestring budget

Team collaboration on a shoestring budgetWhat is the name of your business and URL?

Birdview Projects – http://www.BirdviewProjects.com

A brief synopsis of the website / application:

Birdview Projects – is collaborative project workspace for small business and entrepreneurs.
It helps teams meet their projects deadlines and budgets, collaborate by sharing files and messages and provide real-time status updates to clients.

Why did you start this company?

Team collaboration on a shoestring budgetProject management is a huge market and it is quite saturated, however it is just a tip of an iceberg. 5-7 years ago only some mature companies with trained project managers were looking for project management software. Right now, thanks to market education from companies like 37 signals, thousands of companies (big and small) across all industries are looking for PM tools that will help them to work more efficiently and effectively. And there are millions that are still use paper and Excel. There is a huge potential there.

There is a gap in a market. This gap represents the companies that have people that were just promoted as project managers, or they were told – we need to get PM software, go find one and start using it. But these people usually don’t have any experience with PM software, they don’t know what EVA, SPI or CPI stand for and they don’t care. All they want is to get their projects done on time and on budget. So they need to start using the software right away, but they don’t want to spend 2 weeks going through training. But, here is a tricky part. Even though a lot of these companies are small (5-10 people), their workflow can be quite sophisticated, that’s why tools like Excel or Basecamp just don’t cut it for them anymore. That’s where we believe there is a gap and opportunity for Birdview Projects. It has been created specifically for companies who don’t have time or desire to deal with yet another do-it-all software that becomes a project in itself to learn and master. Birdview Projects is an ideal solution for project managers and teams who just want their work to be done and to have some fun in the process.

Was your company started on a shoestring budget or funded?

Our company was bootstrapped with no outside funding.

Who is your competition, and what do you do better?

Team collaboration on a shoestring budgetOur biggest competition is probably Excel and whiteboards. There are millions of companies across the globe who manage projects on a daily basis using these tools without even knowing that there is a better way. I remember talking to a project manager in one of the top 5 banks in Canada, who was leading an IT team of 20 people. When I asked her how she tracks her team progress, the response way: “Well, I call them or drop-by their desk to find out what’s going on. And then every Monday we send out a spreadsheet with a list of tasks to everyone. Also, each Friday I put together reports for the management. Usually there are a lot of emails going back and forth in order to figure out all tasks’ progress, plus I have to merge and tweak a whole bunch of Excel files”.

When we sit together and calculated the number of hours per week that she and her team can save by eliminating this micro-management and using a centralized web-based system to track all communications, files and status updates, she was gobsmacked. By a very conservative estimate, our product could save the team about 60-80 hours per month.

Why would a small business, entrepreneur, freelancer, etc use your product?

Team collaboration on a shoestring budgetMost new start-ups need to concentrate on their core goal – building their business. They simply can’t afford to waste any time by micromanaging their team or let some important tasks slip through the cracks. Birdview Projects allows companies to focus on their core expertise and ensure that all tasks are accounted for and completed successfully.

There are a number of benefits for small business and entrepreneurs for implementing Birdview Projects. Here are the top 3:

  • Get a Bird’s-eye view of your entire company
    Sort and filter all of your projects on one page with our unique “Birdview”. You can zoom-out to get an overall picture of all of your projects, or zoom-in and drill down to see details of a single project.
  • Detect and fix problems with your projects before it’s too late
    Our “Instant Feedback” approach helps your team to be more proactive and empowers staff members to report and tackle issues before they get a chance to negatively impact your projects or tasks.
  • Ideal for staff members with little or no experience with project management software
    Birdview Projects has a very shallow learning curve, so any employee can start using it in a matter of minutes without any training.

How could you effectively use these tools?

Birdview Projects is centered around people; around a team. You don’t just log in, check on your deadlines and get to work. Birdview lets everyone take ownership of their tasks, provide instant feedback and really feel like they are a part of the team, even if they work outside of our office.

A short bio of your company:

Birdview Projects is a product of Aiki Projects Inc. – Toronto based company specializing in team productivity software. It’s a privately held company founded in 2010.

Do you offer free online or offline tools?

Yes, we have a free plan called “Hummingbird”. It provides 1 user login, 3 projects, 3 customers and 100mb of storage.

Are there different pricing levels?

Yes, we have 4 paid plans with different pricing levels:

Robin (start-up) Owl (team) Falcon (business) Eagle (enterprise)
$9 / month $29 / month $49 / month $20 per user / month
3 users 10 users 30 users starting at 30 users
15 projects 25 projects 50 projects Unlimited projects
25 companies 50 companies 100 companies Unlimited companies
5 GB of storage 10 GB of storage 50 GB of storage 100Gb of storage
Time & Money Tracking Time & Money Tracking Time & Money Tracking
Company Logo Company Logo Company Logo
SSL Support SSL Support

 

Do you have a blog that keeps users updated?

We have a blog where we post product updates and interesting stories / articles:
http://blog.birdviewprojects.com

Facebook, twitter, LinkedIn or ? Provide exact URL of each

Twitter: @birdviewproject
Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/birdviewprojects

YouTube – Do you have a YouTube video URL that you can share with us, and allow us to publish with your story

Our 4-minute overview video:

httpv://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EzqtsZlwBHw

How long have you been in business?

Birdview Projects has been under development for over 2 years and it was finally released to the public in May, 2011.

How many employees do you currently have working with you and/or freelance contractors?

We have about 20 people (full-time employees and contractors) who work on Birdview Projects.

What other web based products would you recommend to entrepreneurs, business owners, or freelancers?

There are a lot of great services around that won’t break your bank but could be really useful to small business and entrepreneurs. Here are the top 3 that we use and are happy to endorse:

Grasshopper – Virtual Phone System with toll-free numbers, voicemails, extensions, etc.
Reliable, quick and easy to use.
http://www.grasshopper.com/

Uservoice – amazing customer community system. It combines tools for collecting feedback and ideas, helpdesk and knowledgebase.
http://www.uservoice.com/

Fastspring – eCommerce and payment processing provider. Excellent service if you need to accept online payment. The best customer service in the industry.
http://www.fastspring.com/

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