productivity tips · Oct 21, 2019

Quire - Behind the Scenes: The Untold Stories

Best Project Management Software

Back in 2014, a group of developers had been trying out hundreds of project management software solutions in order to solve the productivity puzzle but left unanswered. The main problem with common project management software is that it involves a very long list, which can backfire on the efficiency in the workplace.

Unwilling to settle for all the complexity, Quire was born as an answer to conquering a big project and achieving your dreams. Maybe you’re new to Quire or you’ve been a Quirean for a long time, we would like to share with you the journey of Quire.

Today we’re thrilled to bring you an interview with Tom - the creator of Quire. As a serial entrepreneur and a software developer, Tom shares with us his insightful tips to deal with software complexity, how to boost team productivity, and more!

To get us started, could you share a bit about the background of Quire and what was going on in the market when Quire launched and what were the goals for differentiation?

We’re Potix Corporation - a privately held software company that owns and develops ZK framework - the leading Java Web framework. Along with our journey, from collaboration with Fortune 500 companies down to small businesses, we’ve tried ourselves with a variety of project management software but left unsatisfied.

The common project management tool involves working with a long task list; the interrelationships of tasks are not presented visually nor logically. What’s worse is that we were forced to digest every detail in a project head on. Therefore, dealing with a long list in the most logical way has been Quire’s philosophy ever since.

Infinite task list

We created Quire to map out exactly how your mind works. When you face a challenging project, it can get overwhelming if you don’t know where to start. Quire is designed to break down big ideas to digestible tasks to help you get started step-by-step then achieve the goal eventually. Instead of a plain disorganized to-do list, we introduced an infinite nested task list. Users can use tasks and subtasks to create an endless mind map to illustrate the big picture of a project.

Then when a list grows a bit overwhelming, we have Kanban board for users to move some of the crucial tasks to focus on for a short period of time. Our Kanban board mirrors exactly how a tangible whiteboard works. Everything is laid out neatly for users to track progress and effortlessly visualize the workflow. You can have different boards for different teams within the same project.

There is always a new productivity software that comes out every now and then. Each software is developed with different approaches. Every productivity software tries to add as many features as possible to their software to deliver the “whole package” tool for users.

However, it’s never our intention to make Quire a software that can please everyone. There’s no perfect solution when it comes to a project management tool. If you don’t like a tool because it doesn’t fit your needs, just walk away and pick up another.

At Quire, we believe a good project management software is made for solving one’s problems, making the impossible missions possible. We don’t want to create a platform that drives our users crazy because of all the features maze.

Your time comes with a price tag, don’t waste your time on learning and using a complicated tool. Quire puts together all the fundamental features that a project manager needs to get things done, no more, no less. And the best part is, all of the powerful features are wrapped in the most intuitive and logical user interface.

AI & IFTTT (or, more precisely, application-to-application) are the two features that we’re considering at this moment. We believe a project management software that integrates with AI & IFTTT will expand the users’ working capacities and boost productivity of the team without increasing stress.

Quire offers a good list of features — from streamlined to-do lists and progress trackers to cross-device functionality. Is there an underlying tenet connecting all of your features that you think attracts and retains users? What’s your personal favorite aspect of Quire to tell users about?

Unlike other kinds of software, users from productivity software market know exactly what they’re looking for. Every team has a set of required features that they expect to see in a tool. User’s interface also plays a very important role in the decision making process for a software deployment.

While having all the powerful functionality to help users achieve high levels of productivity, Quire still successfully keeps a clean and minimalist design, which gets a lot of praise among our users community.

Each of the features in Quire was developed carefully to the details just to give our users the most logical workflow to ease up the tension at work. One of my favorites is the recently released Peekaboo feature. We believe productivity is a continuous process, so in order to keep up with your dynamic workflow, you must not get stuck or burnt out with your long task list.

Quire Peekaboo feature lets you tuck away the tasks that cannot be completed right away for future exploration. So instead of worrying about what to do, you can dive in your task list and actually make progress everyday.

If you had to quantify the #1 benefit Quire delivers to users, what would it be (hours saved through better organization, streamlined workflows, higher productivity rates, ROI, all of the above)?

As a productivity software, of course, the most valuable benefit that Quire delivers to our users is the ability to get things done at the minimum effort. We try not to create another problem while solving an existing problem. Our users come to Quire with the hope of having a software to organize their work and boost productivity.

We think Quire does a very good job at streamlining users’ workflows and saving all of the wasted effort and time in worrying about the project. Instead, with Quire, you can go ahead and start working on your project right away.

Kanban board project management software

Quire doesn’t aim for adding heavy features and becoming an all-in-one solution. However, when it comes to adding new features, how much of the internal development process and discussions are based around adapting to the newest trend and/or listening to user feedback?

One of the benefits of cloud-based project management software is the central management. We update our system every couple days to create a better experience for our users. Quire is a product-oriented company, which means we focus on how to actually enhance our product.

We have an active community and we receive a lot of feedback and suggestions from our users everyday. We spend a lot of time in listening to the needs of the users then discussing internally on how to best deliver the new feature. Creating a bunch of features isn’t an impossible mission, however, creating one feature that actually goes well with the existing workflow to become a whole package is another story.

In most cases, we spend more time on thinking about the logic behind a potential feature, than on the how-to implement it. For example, mostly every productivity tool has Kanban board, but when we decided to add Kanban board to Quire, it took our team nearly 1 year to come up with a different approach that actually solves our users with their productivity problem (streamlining workflow from brain-storming, planning to executing via nested task list and Kanban board).

A lot of our users now really appreciate and love the way Quire allows them to have both of the views for one project instead of pushing them to choose either one.

Task list and Kanban board

What’s on the horizon? Is there anything coming down the pipeline that you’re personally excited about? Quire users are very excited to know about Quire roadmap.

We realize it’s impossible to fulfill every demand from our users and we never want to keep adding new irrelevant features to Quire just to have an all-in-one software. We decided to have Open APIs for our users to integrate their most preferable apps/software with Quire, and have a marketplace for our community to help each other to customize Quire.

Timeline, Gantt chart and IFTTT will soon come to Quire as well. We don’t want Quire to be “just another productivity software” with the same features, that’s why we take a lot of time in internal discussion and beta test to make sure the new feature will be a breakthrough and go smoothly with the current workflow in Quire.

Besides adding new features to Quire, we also keep reconsidering and refining the existing functionality for better user’s experience. For example, we’re working on the 3rd generation of “My Tasks” section. We hope the new updates can bring user’s productivity to another level.

Describe your team — is there a company ideology you’re most proud of, or perhaps, a little-known fact about your team culture/office dynamics that you think contributes to your success as a brand?

Quire is a very dynamic team. We have a very talented developer team with strong knowledge of technology. We always encourage our team members to think outside of the box and come up with new innovative ideas for Quire. We frequently discuss about users’ suggestions and how to enhance Quire.

Every member is inspired to actively use a lot of different tools and share our experiences with the team. We avoid viewing things as Quire developers, instead, our team always tries to walk on users’ shoes. We learn from our users, listen to the market’s needs and work as a team to deliver value to our community. Users’ positive feedback and suggestions are always the endless inspiration for us to develop Quire.

Vicky Pham
Trying not to get lost in the city lights.