Dynaread is a Canadian company offering services that help struggling readers over seven years old reach functional literacy. As part of their services, they offer online dyslexia testing plus reading intervention and remediation. Launched in 2006, Dynaread has grown to be one of North America’s leading literacy providers, with clients all over the world and a team of experts located on three continents.

The Challenges

Hans Dekkers, CEO and CTO of Dynaread, needed data organization, planning tools, and transparency in a single system that could be accessed from any location. For almost a decade,  Dynaread worked with an array of different project management tools and planning tools to optimize their workflows. Though they test drove most of the well-known brands and even developed their own highly customized cloud-based spreadsheet derivatives, they could not find a system that met their needs without an additional patchwork of inputs or apps.

“Nothing we tried was truly satisfactory. The other systems all lacked the functionality to take care of time tracking, progress for individual projects, and team communication–and provide a perfect overview for our management paths along the way.”  

Project transparency was probably one of the most pressing needs for Dynaread’s remote teams and internationally-located clients. Without the tools for real-time project coordination and reporting, Dynaread employees and managers were spending too much time managing their projects instead of teaching children how to read.

“Because we needed better processes for tracking and managing our project load, we kept looking for better software. We kept testing systems and rejecting them, until finally we hit Teamwork Projects.”

The Solution

Two years after choosing Teamwork Projects, Dynaread now has all of the tools it needs to manage team members in different time zones and a growing number of clients. Managers can add projects, tasks and subtasks for any team member and attach all supporting materials such as links, documents, or images. Using the document editor, team members can collaborate on these files without having to send updated versions to other team members every time a document is revised.
Tasks and subtasks are further organized with priority designations, tags, and flags in order to help team members establish their workflows based on deadlines or dependencies on another team member’s timeline. Time tracking is available for each individual task and subtask, and as projects develop, tasks can also be changed or rearranged as needed using drag-and-drop rather than requiring team members to waste time re-entering data by hand.

“There are so many different ways Teamwork Projects helps us work more effectively in our day-to-day tasks and workflows. And its hyper-intuitive interface doesn’t get in the way of our work and our mission.”

Dynaread employees are also able to save significant time with the powerful search tool when they need to reference a past activity or discussion. Research on past projects that used to take hours is done in a few seconds because team members don’t have to comb through multiple apps like email, instant messaging, or document comments. Task lists, comments and past protocols are all searchable within Teamwork Projects.
When Hans or any of Dynaread’s other managers need to see the big picture or get a current status report, they check in with the detailed project overview. In one screen, they can review deadlines, tasks completed and in process, and other important details for any of the multi-layered projects his team manage.

“This software is simply and brilliantly designed”

The Benefits

Since Dynaread offers specialized services to an underserved segment of students, funding is scarce, which means that margins are exceptionally thin. But their goals to scale and grow the business are identical to any other business.

“Rather than having been designed and built and then offered to the market, Teamwork–ever so clearly–has its roots in the real world. It’s a tool designed by a company like ours which manages multiple synchronous projects. Real-life experience with the very challenges we face has allowed Teamwork to build a project management solution that is utterly relevant, highly useful, very intuitive, and supremely efficient. We love it!”

As updates and additional features have been added, Dynaread team members have quickly utilized them in their workflows, saving still more time and financial resources. Collaboration becomes simpler, transparency keeps improving, and they can help more students every year.  

“Teamwork Projects helps us deliver affordable special education services that change lives:  increasing adolescent literacy. While our business appreciates these tools, it’s really our end-users who gain the most because we’re able to help more children gain skills that will benefit them their whole lives.”