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Asana adds enterprise features to its task management app

Improved areas include broader projects visibility for business managers and stronger controls for IT departments

Asana has beefed up its workplace task management software to make it viable for enterprises with thousands of users.

Specifically, the product now features more comprehensive views across team projects for both business managers and employees, as well as stronger IT control and management capabilities.

With the new Team Browser feature, employees can get a single view of all the projects they're involved in, so that they can prioritize the tasks they need to do. This feature also lets managers see all the projects under way in the company.

New IT administration capabilities include the ability to monitor user activity, establish security and access policies and manage user accounts.

"This opens us up to companies of any size," said Kenny Van Zant, who is in charge of business and operations at Asana.

Asana was founded in 2009 on the belief that the key to workplace productivity is the management of tasks. It launched its product in 2011, and it was at that time limited to teams of 30 people. Later, it was improved to support teams of hundreds.

Despite the development of a variety of tools for knowledge workers over the past 30 years, organizations still rely mostly on email and on physical whiteboards and notebooks to capture tasks and track their team project workflows, he said.

For a variety of reasons, project management software, wikis, collaboration servers like SharePoint and enterprise social networking suites have all fallen short, he said.

"Starting with tasks is fundamental to solving this problem for real," Van Zant said.

The SaaS (software-as-a-service) application is free for teams of up to 15 members, and fee-based for larger teams. For example, it costs US$800 per month for a 100-member team.

The enterprise features announced on Wednesday are part of the new Organizations tier.

Facebook co-founder Dustin Moskovitz is an Asana co-founder, and the company has raised almost $40 million in venture financing so far.

Juan Carlos Perez covers enterprise communication/collaboration suites, operating systems, browsers and general technology breaking news for The IDG News Service. Follow Juan on Twitter at @JuanCPerezIDG.


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