One of the most difficult problems for me to overcome is my aversion to time or project management. Sure, I’ve talked about case management systems, which help ease the burden lawyers face in remembering their clients and information. But when it comes to actually managing individual tasks in a project, I’m a complete wreck. Combine my disorganization with an aversion for tracking tasks, and I’m a complete wreck. Fortunately, Wrike — Project Management is a newly discovered (for me) project management application with a Chrome extension and desktop interface that I believe will help other users like myself get organized.
Wrike creates an online environment for project or task management, and best of all, the product integrates with many online sources, including Google Drive.
The online workspace
Wrike’s online space is the core element of the program. The online dashboard allows a user to create projects and collaborate with team members across the internet.
If you’ve worked with project management systems in the past, then Wrike’s interface is very familiar and friendly. If not, the company has a YouTube channel with a number of great tutorials.
The Android mobile app
One of the most enticing features for me was the prospect of the Android mobile app. The app features tablet and small screen optimizations, packaged in a clean and beautiful use of material design.
The settings enable users to create specific project folders, add tasks, and assign users to particular items.
I should mention that I did have some issues creating a folder, but this was user error — I created the folder first, but should have added it directly from the task — as opposed to a programming error.
One element I didn’t think I’d enjoy was Wrike’s quick access notification.
This sits permanently — you can turn it off in settings — in your notification bar. I initially turned off this notification when I started using the application. However, I quickly realized how beneficial the notification panel ended up becoming, especially when I can add tasks with one or two swipes.
Overall, Wrike — Project Management gets 4 of 5 stars for a solidly designed application.
How much does this thing cost?
Wrike is open about the overall cost of their system. Unfortunately, “cheap” lawyers will probably balk at the pricing structure.
Personally, I think this is a pretty good deal — $588 per year — though the program is on the costlier end of project management systems, especially when compared to specific legal case management programs like MyCase or Clio. Note that a premium account will enable other features like timekeeping and dependencies.
I know many attorneys who use Basecamp or similar programs to manage their cases. I’d consider Wrike as a case management option, in conjunction with Google Apps for Work, given the program’s robust abilities. I still have concerns about relationship management — a huge bonus of legal case management software — and billing/accounting. I think Wrike would make an excellent trial management and preparation program, because you can collaborate across platforms, share documents, and add comments to specific tasks.
Certainly, if you’re looking for an across-the-board project management option for your law firm, consider Wrike — Project Management to fill that void. Look at my update below for recommendations.
Wrike does not claim ownership of Content you submit or make available for inclusion on the Service. However, with respect to Content you submit or make available for inclusion on publicly accessible areas of the Service, you grant Wrike the following worldwide, royalty-free and non-exclusive license(s): the perpetual, irrevocable and fully sublicensable license to use, distribute, reproduce, modify, adapt, publish, translate, publicly perform and publicly display such Content (in whole or in part) and to incorporate such Content into other works in any format or medium now known or later developed.
First, I don’t believe — I’ve reached out to Wrike for clarification — Wrike intends this clause to mean what the clause says. In other words, I think the company included a boilerplate term in this agreement, with consequences they didn’t intend. (Perhaps this is a copy and past job, with find and replace.) If not, then this is a very scary term.
I cannot advocate Wrike’s use until we know otherwise.
Admittedly, this is an instance where I reviewed a good looking product without full diligence. I apologize.
Second, I do believe — and again, I’m waiting clarification — that Wrike does intend this paragraph to mean something like, “you give us a license to manage your data in such a way that we can organize, publish, display, and maintain it for current and future use, in a format or medium now known or later developed.” I believe the company intends that term give them the ability to manage, store, and display the information, as opposed to reusing and publishing your content.
Perhaps, instead of a “all of your datas belong to us” mentality, Wrike should follow Basecamp’s example.