Asana is a social task management application for teams and individuals. It's a free service (up to 30 users) with a newly refreshed iPhone app, called Asana Mobile, that's finding a home in both large and small companies.
Here are the basics for using Asana Mobile to manage tasks and projects on your iPhone.
Getting Started with the Asana app
Getting started with Asana Mobile varies, depending on whether or not you set up the Asana account personally, an Asana user is sharing a project with you, or you are accessing Asana through a Google Apps account.
Follow these steps to get started with Asana Mobile:
- Download Asana Mobile from the App Store
- Enter your Asana username and password
- When you access Asana Mobile from your iPhone, it will update to the latest version (if available) and then open to the app inbox or the last project you had open (Figure A)
A project open in Asana Mobile.
Viewing the Asana Mobile inboxThe Asana Mobile inbox, which appears as an icon in the top right corner, was recently added to the iPhone app, so you can now view the status of your tasks (Figure B). Figure B
The Asana Mobile inbox.
From the inbox view, you have full access to your tasks. You can comment on tasks, drill down into the details, and mark items as read.
Managing tasks in Asana Mobile
Asana Mobile gives you a lot of control over the tasks and projects in your Asana account. In fact, the app is a great tool for brainstorming on project tasks when you're away from your desk.
Mark a task as complete
Marking a task as complete is a fundamental act in the Asana Mobile app.
To mark a task as complete:
- Tap on the task to open it
- Tap Mark Complete
Add a task
When you add a task using Asana Mobile, you can include details (such as notes), organize it by project, and add a due date, tags, and followers.
To add a task:
- Tap the blue plus sign [+] at the top center of the screen, which will launch the New Task screen (Figure C) Figure C
- Type the task into the field beside the checkbox
- Optionally, enter any notes you want to accompany the task
- Tap Projects, and from the list of Asana Mobile projects that appears (Figure D), select a project for the task you are creating Figure D
- Tap Done
- Tap Due Date, and then select a date when the task needs to be completed
- Tap Done
- Tap Tags, and then select the appropriate tag(s) from the Tags list
- Tap Done
- Tap Followers, and then select the contacts you want to follow this task (these are typically other people on your team)
- Tap Create
Asana Mobile's New Task screen.
The Asana Project list includes every project of which you are a member.
You can also tap edit to resume editing the task in case you made a mistake or need make a change after you add the task.
Create a new project
To create a new project:
- Tap the navigation icon (top left corner), you'll see tabs for Projects, Tags, and People
- From the Projects tab, tap New Project
- On the New Project page, enter a name for your new project, and then tap Done
- After you tap Create, the new Project will appear on your iPhone screen (Figure E)
A new project in Asana Mobile.
View My Tasks
It's possible your tasks will span more than one project in Asana Mobile. You can get a consolidated view of your tasks by using the My Tasks view.
To view My Tasks:
- Tap on the Navigation button to launch the Navigation menu
- Tap My Tasks (Figure F)
- If you complete a task, tap the selection box to mark it complete Figure F
My Tasks is a consolidated view of all your current and upcoming tasks across Asana Mobile projects.
View and manage tasks by tag
You also the option to tag your tasks for organizational purposes, and this feature really comes in handy when you are accessing Asana through the iPhone app. If you take full advantage of the tags, you can get some nice views into project tasks.
To view and manage tasks by tag:
- Tap the Navigation menu
- Tap the Tags tab, select the tag you want to use to view tasks, and a list of the tasks tagged with that tag will appear
- Tap a selection by a task to mark it as complete
Social task management with Asana Mobile
Asana Mobile is a great way to extend the social task management of Asana to iPhone users. It brings together the best of the cloud and iPhone task management. You have full access to Asana, with the exception of not being able to upload files from your iPhone.
Have you used Asana Mobile? If so, what is your experience with this free app? Share your experience in the discussion thread below.
Will Kelly is a freelance technical writer and analyst currently focusing on enterprise mobility, Bring Your Own Device (BYOD), and the consumerization of IT. He has also written about cloud computing, Big Data, virtualization, project management applications, Google Apps, Microsoft technologies, and online collaboration for TechRepublic and other sites. Will also works as a contract technical writer for clients in the Washington, DC area and nationwide. Follow Will on Twitter: @willkelly.