Should we upgrade to the ‘new’ basecamp from 37signals or move out?

in Blog This article was originally published by Julian Seery Gude on The Remarkable Blog from exceler8.com
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I’ve been using and recommending basecamp from 37signals to friends and clients since it’s humble beginnings. It’s still a very functional project management tool.

I’m obsessed with continuous improvement and using tools that leverage every part of my workflow. Collaboration and communications between remote workers and clients is a big part of my work. Because of this, and basecamp’s limitations, I have continued to evaluate project management tools on a regular basis for the last 3 or 4 years. And yes, basecamp is still a darn good tool.

Managing tasks, time and projects are as important to running an internet marketing and web design company as your creative output or customer service. I’ve come across some tools that I’ve really liked in one way or the other but always came back to basecamp.

Recently I found a compelling enough reason to switch from basecamp. www.Podio.com. I haven’t regretted moving to podio.

So now comes the new basecamp. Something I would have salivated over before podio. 

It’s a lot of work to move back to basecamp from podio, so just like when I left basecamp and moved to podio I would need a really compelling reason. Like way better functionality, price or both. But I don’t see that 37signals has given me that.  

And I have a client on basecamp that’s still using them. The main reason they selected basecamp was my recommendation. What to do…

Should I recommend my client upgrades to the new basecamp or leave things on the classic version?

From what I can tell from reading posts like the one I’m linking to here today, I can’t see either option being particularly appealing to my business, or to my clients.

  • option a: go with new basecamp, get useful new features, lose other useful features.
  • option b: stay with well known but limited tool, face up to the fact that it’s probably not going to be aggressively developed.

Since 37 signals has gotten me thinking about making choices, another possibly more appealing one comes to mind. Maybe look for something else. I’ve already established that this is inherent in my way of doing business. For many businesses it is now. But this gives them a real good reason to start evaluating basecamp (old and new). Since switching costs are on the table so is switching to something else altogether. 

I don’t know what other people or business owners will do. I know my considerations. Money, portable data, great API, great UI, fun and easy to use, big community of users, responsive support and training, integration with common web services (e.g. google) speed, reliability, highly adaptable to your own workflow and…a search box that works. For me, Podio offers a great answer to these questions and costs me far less money. For now, I’m with podio…

Easy choice.

~julian

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