Project Management Software Tech

The Best Project Management Software for 2018

The Best Project Management Software for 2018

The Best Project Management Software

The greatest challenge administration software program accommodates each type of venture, from ongoing day-to-day work to big-picture initiatives. We appeared for the software program that may assist any undertaking thrive, with a wealth of reporting and scheduling options and an intuitive design. We spent every week testing 10 of the preferred choices and located 5 prime picks that may work with any group.

How We Selected the Best Project Management Software

Ease of use

Project administration software program is just useful in case your staff can truly use it. Of the 10 we examined, many boasted a powerful listing of options and capabilities — however it felt such as you wanted a pc science diploma to make the most of them. The worst offenders had interfaces that have been so full of intricate filters and time monitoring instruments that it was exhausting to determine how you can carry out primary features like including duties and tasks. Whereas skilled undertaking managers may love this type of performance, cluttered screens and an over-abundance of options make it more durable for the entire workforce to study.

Liquid-Planner-for-Project-Management-Software

LiquidPlanner had one of many extra features-heavy interfaces in our testing.

The 10 venture administration software program packages we examined

  • Asana
  • Basecamp
  • Informal
  • EasyProjects
  • Freedcamp
  • LiquidPlanner
  • monday.com
  • Quire
  • Smartsheet
  • Trello

Third-party integrations

For many groups, challenge administration software program is considered one of many merchandise they depend upon each day. With that in thoughts, it is sensible that one of the best undertaking administration software program performs properly with different packages.

For cloud storage, we most popular software program with loads of integrations with in style choices like Dropbox, Google Drive, and Microsoft OneDrive. Integration with messaging apps like Slack and Hipchat was additionally key, permitting you to get notifications and ship updates within the locations you’re already frequenting. All of our prime picks embrace integrations with Google Drive, Dropbox, and Slack, with two exceptions: Basecamp lacks storage integrations, and Slack is lacking from Informal’s lineup.

Asana-2-Project-Management-Software

Asana had probably the most spectacular assortment of third-party integrations we noticed.

Reporting instruments

After the important features of managing duties and calendars, some of the necessary instruments for venture managers is the power to simply report out on the info that’s being collected by their software program. Reporting instruments facilitate monitoring bills or analyzing the time allocation of duties. The greatest venture administration software program takes the work out of visualizing info for managers — all with out bogging down the consumer expertise for the remainder of the workforce. Software like Asana and monday.com fared particularly properly right here, with choices to export a undertaking’s knowledge into Google Sheets or Excel.

Activity administration

Whereas file storage and reporting instruments are boons for managers, protecting work on schedule is probably going the rationale you’re buying challenge administration software program within the first place. The greatest software program permits you to break down tasks into trackable duties; this helps every staff member keep updated with the elements of the undertaking they’re accountable for whereas displaying the larger image of all the group’s workload. With so many duties to maintain monitor of, managers want instruments to assign roles and permissions to their groups.

Surprisingly, not each software program we checked out provided these kind of options. In our search for the most effective, we gave credit score to merchandise like Asana and monday.com, which made assigning and viewing duties a breeze. In each instances, a consumer’s photograph and initials are hooked up to each activity, so you possibly can immediately see who’s accountable for what. Freedcamp, however, forces you to click on on every particular activity (which frustratingly opens a brand new browser tab) to see the consumer assigned to it.

Constructed-in communication

We love something that declutters our e-mail inbox. And whereas venture administration software program in all probability gained’t be your staff’s go-to technique of speaking — messaging apps like Slack and Hipchat will all the time have the sting right here — we needed to seek out the software program that gave us the perfect of each worlds. Accessing a built-in reside chat function not solely cuts down on countless e-mail chains, nevertheless it additionally allows the staff to make selections on the fly within the context of a undertaking or activity. The greatest software program has each one-on-one chat for personal conversations and group chat for brainstorming periods, project-related chatter, and even the occasional gif or two.

The 5 Best Project Management Software Packages

  • Asana –

    Best Activity Management Software

  • Basecamp –

    Best Communication Device

  • monday.com –

    Best for Learners

  • Informal –

    Best for Visible Thinkers

  • Trello –

    Best Free Project Management Software

Best Process Management Software

Asana

Asana

With a powerful variety of instruments and third-party integrations, Asana is a superb selection for task-oriented groups.

Execs
Easy activity administration
Complete reporting instruments
Third-party integrations
Intuitive cellular app

Cons
Steeper studying curve
No direct messaging

Why we selected it

Easy process administration

For a challenge administration software program’s most important perform — maintaining your group on monitor and in step via each part of a venture — Asana did one of the best job of any product we examined. We appreciated the way it balanced a person’s workload with the larger image of the whole staff. Your private deadlines and duties are all the time in view, nevertheless it’s additionally simply as straightforward for managers to trace your complete staff’s progress with options like automated progress charts and team-wide process calendars. The method Asana breaks down big tasks into manageable and easy-to-follow items makes it probably the most intuitive activity administration system of the bunch.

Complete reporting instruments

Asana additionally has quite a lot of instruments that make it easy for managers to seize a chook’s-eye view of their workforce’s progress. One of many ones we favored probably the most was the power to mechanically export a undertaking’s knowledge into Google Sheets. As soon as there, the spreadsheet is already organized into sensible sections just like the variety of overdue, accomplished, or in-progress duties for all your tasks. Your report comes pre-loaded with two instruments relying on what’s in your Dashboard — ours had two graphs displaying the variety of overdue, assigned, and incomplete duties by undertaking — however we discovered it easy to tailor to our particular wants.

Third-party integrations

One of many largest speaking factors in critiques of Asana is how seamlessly it matches with different packages. We noticed that clearly in our testing: Asana has the perfect assortment of third-party integrations of any software program on the market. You’ll be able to arrange notifications or create new duties in messaging apps like Slack and Hipchat, connect information from storage packages like Google Drive and OneDrive, and routinely create Asana duties in improvement providers like Jira and GitHub. It was the one software program in our checks that provided integrations with all six of these well-liked apps. We additionally beloved the Chrome extension, which lets you create a process from any web page with solely a few clicks.

Intuitive cellular app

If you wish to double-check your calendar or the standing of your duties when you’re away out of your pc, a useful cellular app can get rid of numerous complications. Asana’s is among the most well-received within the business, incomes a four.eight score on over 2,000 critiques within the App Retailer and a four.three on over 20,000 critiques in Google Play. That’s nearly even with Basecamp and Trello, and nicely above monday.com and Informal.

It’s straightforward to see why. Asana’s interface interprets extremely nicely to a cellular display; your whole duties, messages, and tasks are accessible with one click on from anyplace within the app, so that you by no means should spend a lot time probing round. You gained’t need to use it for the whole lot — exporting knowledge can be fairly cumbersome, for instance — however it’s good to have round for extra primary features.

Factors to think about

Steeper studying curve

Due to Asana’s appreciable challenge administration capabilities, it could possibly take slightly extra time to study than different software program, particularly in case your group is used to one thing extra restricted. It’s unclear at first how you need to be utilizing your Dashboard, for instance: You should add tasks with a purpose to reap the benefits of its features, which means you’re initially introduced with a clean display.

Nonetheless, even when instruments like these aren’t completely intuitive whenever you first begin utilizing Asana, the essential points for most staff members — process and calendar administration — are entrance and middle. Asana additionally has an unlimited library of assets and tutorials for utilizing the software program, so most points may be addressed with out an excessive amount of hassle.

Asana-for-Project-Management-Software

It wasn’t instantly clear to our tester how you can benefit from instruments like Asana’s Dashboard.

No direct messaging

Whereas having a dialog together with your complete group in Asana is extremely easy, we couldn’t discover any straightforward method to immediately message our group members, one thing that was fairly commonplace on different software program we examined. Whereas there’s a workaround — you’ll be able to create a personal challenge for messaging and invite every particular person into separate conversations inside the venture — it’s sufficient of a problem that most individuals will in all probability simply persist with Slack or e-mail.

Best Communication Software

Basecamp

Basecamp

Whereas it doesn’t have a full suite of scheduling and activity administration instruments, Basecamp is a superb choice for managers who need one place to trace all of their staff’s ongoing discussions.

Execs
Nice for group discussions
Flat month-to-month worth
Stellar apps

Cons
Sub-par activity administration
Lacks reporting instruments

Why we selected it

Nice for group discussions

Basecamp’s largest draw is that it’s a one-stop store for all your group’s communications, eliminating prolonged e-mail threads. It features like a message board — you possibly can publish a subject to your workforce’s web page, and everybody with entry can add to the dialog for so long as they need. You may as well arrange recurring prompts every week or month to spur conversations inside your staff. Questions like “What was a successful project you worked on this month?” could be cumbersome or awkward to to ship in an e mail or Slack, however they work completely with Basecamp’s format. We additionally beloved the power so as to add e-mail notifications to essential subjects, so workforce members gained’t miss out on something.

Flat month-to-month worth

Basecamp has one of many easiest pricing buildings of any undertaking administration software program available on the market — it’s $99 a month, no strings hooked up. Granted, that’s quite a bit for smaller groups, however for anybody with greater than a dozen customers, Basecamp is an absolute steal. You’ll be able to have as many customers as you need, and also you don’t should decide to something longer than a month.

Stellar apps

As a result of Basecamp excels as a communication software, we appreciated that it has devoted apps for any sort of gadget. As an alternative of getting an e-mail for each new message (or being pressured to verify a browser periodically), you possibly can arrange Basecamp notifications in your telephone or desktop for precisely what you want to find out about — for occasion, should you’re talked about in a dialog or if a thread you’re following has a brand new remark.

We discovered each the desktop and cellular apps to be well-designed and intuitive, which was backed up by consumer evaluations. Each apps are unanimously well-received, incomes a four.7 score on 14,301 critiques within the App Retailer and a four.four on ‎2,654 critiques in Google Play. Together with Asana and Trello, that was the loudest endorsement we heard for any undertaking administration software program.

Factors to think about

Sub-par process administration

It’d be onerous to think about utilizing Basecamp as your workforce’s main activity administration system. Every consumer has an inventory of assignments, however they’re little greater than a to-do record. We discovered it troublesome to trace all the shifting elements of a challenge directly, not to mention a number of overlapping ones. Once you open the calendar, you possibly can’t see at a look what everyone seems to be engaged on and the way a lot progress is being made on every undertaking; it simply exhibits you what number of duties are due every day. This works fantastic as a primary to-do record for your staff, however we discovered it to be one of many extra restricted process administration interfaces.

Basecamp-for-Project-Management-Software

Lacks reporting instruments

Basecamp additionally doesn’t embrace any instruments that will help you visualize what’s happening together with your staff. In contrast to Asana, which mechanically turns calendar and process knowledge into helpful visuals, Basecamp leaves that work to you. For those who’re wanting for superior challenge administration instruments past staff communication, you’ll be higher suited with one in every of our different picks.

Best for Learners

monday.com

monday.com

For these new to venture administration software program, monday.com has a library of easy-to-use templates to get you began.

Execs
Personalised design
Customizable templates
Shareable with outdoors shoppers

Cons
Restricted instruments
Costly for small groups

Why we selected it

Personalised design

Out of all of the merchandise we examined, monday.com was the one which allowed us to actually hit the bottom operating. Every part about this software program is intuitive. The sidebar menu is split into “Talks” and “Boards,” the place you possibly can see your whole ongoing “pulses.” These pulses might be something you need, be it particular duties, complete tasks, and even potential shoppers. We like how monday.com doesn’t pressure you into anybody strategy for monitoring your duties and tasks; nevertheless you’d naturally take into consideration your work, it accommodates you.

Monday-1-for-Project-Management-Software

Customizable templates

Monday-2-for-Project-Management-Software

When you do want somewhat assist getting began (or simply don’t need to manually enter all of the related labels for your tasks), monday.com comes pre-loaded with 44 totally different templates, damaged up into sectors like advertising, HR, and software program improvement. This structured strategy makes the setup course of rather less painful, particularly for individuals who aren’t used to working with challenge administration software program.

When you do get used to the platform, there are nonetheless choices to customise in response to your staff’s wants. Need to break down “task date” right into a begin date and a due date within the Group Duties template? Simply click on the plus signal subsequent to the duty and select “Date” for the brand new column sort. Regardless of how we needed to customise the template, it by no means took various clicks to realize.

Shareable with outdoors shoppers

If you wish to hold individuals outdoors of your group updated on particular tasks and timelines, monday.com was the one software program in our checks that offered a “shareable boards” function. That is particularly helpful for shoppers who need to monitor the standing of their undertaking, or for freelancers who would profit from seeing a person undertaking’s calendar with out essentially needing entry to the workforce’s whole workload.

Factors to think about

Restricted instruments

The similar factor that makes monday.com a terrific place for newbies may make it really feel limiting for extra detail-oriented customers. A part of the rationale it’s really easy to make use of is that it doesn’t have as in depth a set of options and instruments as software program like Asana. As an alternative, it focuses on organizing your duties and tasks in probably the most intuitive method attainable — one thing it does rather well. It gained’t routinely visualize knowledge for you, it doesn’t have many monetary administration instruments, and venture managers raised on Gantt charts may miss that device (though monday.com makes a reasonably compelling case on its weblog for abandoning them).

Costly for small groups

In case your workforce solely consists of some individuals, monday.com in all probability isn’t well worth the worth of admission. Whereas most corporations cost per consumer, monday.com makes use of eight totally different tiers of pricing relying in your firm measurement. The smallest one is for 5 customers at $39 per thirty days for the Commonplace plan. For comparability, Asana prices $6.25 per consumer for groups with fewer than 15 customers. For 3-person groups, that’s about half the worth of monday.com.

Best for Visible Thinkers

Casual

Informal

Whereas it lacks a few of the instruments that profit bigger groups, Informal’s “mindmap” interface was probably the most visually pleasing in our checks.

Execs
Visible challenge maps
Storage compatibility
Reasonably priced pricing for small groups

Cons
Lacks instruments for greater groups
Subpar cellular app

Why we selected it

Visible undertaking maps

Informal has probably the most visually pleasing and intuitive interfaces of any venture administration software program we noticed. It really works like a mindmap: The foremost web page is an infinite grid which you could populate with duties and organize in no matter method is sensible for your venture. Inside these duties, you’ll be able to assign a number of workforce members and a due date, plus add any related information. And if a activity requires a number of smaller steps to finish, you’ll be able to convert it to a gaggle, which creates a mini-project inside the duty. We’ll be trustworthy, most undertaking administration packages really feel like work. Informal was the one one we examined that was truly enjoyable to fiddle with, taking us again to afternoons in pc class doodling in MS Paint.

Casual-1-for-Project-Management-Software

Storage compatibility

Casual-2-for-Project-Management-Software

For a smaller and extra reasonably priced undertaking administration system, Informal has storage integrations that rival a lot greater names. You’ll be able to import information from each conceivable cloud-based service: Google Drive, Microsoft OneDrive, Dropbox, and Field are all constructed proper into the system, permitting you to connect related paperwork, spreadsheets, or pictures to any process or undertaking. Of our 5 prime picks, Asana was the one different program to incorporate integrations with these 4 important storage providers.

Reasonably priced pricing for small groups

Informal has one of many friendliest pricing buildings for smaller groups that we noticed. Corporations often cost considered one of two methods: per consumer (often round $10 per thirty days, with costs reducing for extra customers) or a flat fee each month (anyplace from $45 to $99 per thirty days). With each of those choices, groups with just a few individuals find yourself paying extra. Informal costs $7 for as much as two customers and $21 for as much as 5, making certain you’ll by no means pay greater than $7 per consumer it doesn’t matter what measurement your workforce is.

Factors to think about

Lacks instruments for greater groups

Informal’s intuitive format and small group pricing does include some drawbacks: It doesn’t have almost the identical degree of performance as an all-around device like Asana. It’s a reasonably bare-bones process administration system, specializing in serving to you get your tasks accomplished on time and within the easiest method attainable. We missed the power to speak with our workforce members inside the program, which might get particularly problematic in case you have a bigger workforce making an attempt to navigate one undertaking. It additionally doesn’t include a ton of third-party integrations. Whereas the important storage choices are all there, Informal lacks help for communication apps like Slack and improvement merchandise like Jira.

Subpar cellular app

Casual-3-for-Project-Management-Software

Whereas it wasn’t the worst that we tried (that distinction would go to Aha!), Informal’s interesting format doesn’t translate nicely to its cellular app. As an alternative of the limitless grid we beloved a lot on our desktop, the cellular app provides you a primary record of duties. It’s additionally value noting which you could’t create a brand new account by way of the app; you possibly can solely log into an present one. This was an enormous purpose for Informal’s mediocre three-star score on Google Play.

Best Free Project Management Software

Trello

Trello

Best for people or small groups, the free model of Trello’s software program is probably the most beneficiant available on the market.

Execs
Beneficiant free model
Straightforward to study
Extremely rated desktop and cellular apps

Cons
No calendar view
10 MB file measurement restrict
Restricted integrations

Why we selected it

Beneficiant free model

Whereas plenty of free venture administration software program limits you to a sure variety of customers, tasks, and duties, Trello’s free model is totally limitless in all of those areas. You’ll be able to create as many boards as you want, assign duties all through your workforce, and take full benefit of Trello’s desktop and cellular app performance. You even have entry to the large assortment of templates and pattern boards which might be tailor-made to particular varieties of tasks, a pleasant add-on that we didn’t see in some other free software program.

Straightforward to study

Trello has one of many easiest designs of any venture administration software program that we examined. Like Asana, every challenge is its personal board, with duties divided into simply scannable phases; as soon as a activity is full, you simply drag it into the subsequent part in your board. It’s extraordinarily intuitive and easy to customise. After a couple of minutes of enjoying round with it, we have been simply as snug establishing workforce tasks for work as we have been creating personal boards for potential trip spots.

Trello-for-Project-Management-Software

Extremely rated desktop and cellular apps

Together with Basecamp, Trello was one of many solely merchandise we noticed that has desktop apps for each Mac and PC along with cellular apps. They have been additionally a number of the most well-received, scoring a four.7 on over 1,500 critiques within the App Retailer and a four.5 on over 71,000 in Google Play. The desktop apps aren’t simply glorified variations of the browser, both. We appreciated how we might customise our notifications for issues like new feedback on a process, when one thing is moved from one part to a different, or if somebody uploads an attachment to a activity you’re following. It is a good center floor for these of us who don’t essentially want e-mail notifications for every thing however nonetheless need to keep updated with out continually checking browsers.

Factors to think about

No calendar view

The largest impediment to utilizing Trello’s free software program for most venture managers is the shortage of a calendar view. There’s no option to monitor your complete staff’s workload mechanically with out this — managers need to manually monitor hours and duties outdoors of the app. Calendar view is accessible via a “Power-Up”, however Trello solely permits certainly one of these in its free model.

10 MB file measurement restrict

One other constraint Trello places on its free model is a 10 MB measurement restrict on information uploaded out of your pc. If you improve to the most cost effective paid plan, that measurement goes all the best way as much as 250 MB. 10 MB is roughly the dimensions restrict most e-mail providers use for their attachments, so in case your staff is already operating into that problem, it is perhaps value upgrading to a paid plan or contemplating an alternate file sharing system.

Restricted integrations

Trello solely permits one third-party integration (which it calls a “Power-Up”) in its free model. This doesn’t apply to cloud storage providers — Trello permits you to connect information from Google Drive, Dropbox, Field, and OneDrive for free — however limits extra specialised integrations with apps like Jira and Slack. These may be extraordinarily useful in case your workforce is already counting on different software program. If you wish to get notifications in Slack when somebody provides you to a process, for instance, you would need to use a Energy-Up. In case you improve to the paid model of Trello, the variety of Energy-Ups you might have entry to is limitless.

Information to Project Management Software

How to decide on the fitting undertaking administration software program for your group

Decide who will use the software program

The measurement of your workforce tells you numerous concerning the software program you want. A smaller staff will need a easy system for organizing duties and schedules, whereas a supervisor with dozens of staff will want a full roster of reporting instruments and integrations.

Set up your workforce’s wants

“When you know what your business needs, you can draw up a shortlist of features that will help you narrow down the project management software products that will help your business take the next step,” venture administration skilled Elizabeth Harrin advises. Ballot your group and see what they’d wish to get out of a brand new software and the place the present system is falling brief.

Examine costs

Consider which merchandise match into your finances. Group measurement additionally comes into play right here: Corporations often cost both a flat month-to-month price or a fee per consumer. Usually, groups with greater than 10 individuals will save by selecting a flat price plan. Regardless, virtually each one gives a reduction in case you decide to a full yr upfront.

Check-drive a couple of choices

Virtually each software program gives a 30-day free trial, and we advocate taking full benefit of it. Have your workforce schedule a challenge with every one and solicit their suggestions on which they most popular, what sorts of issues they anticipate, and the way it might impression their work. That approach, when it comes time to completely depend on a brand new software program, it gained’t be utterly unfamiliar.

Project Management Software FAQs

What’s undertaking administration software program?

Project administration software program is a broad time period for any program that’s devoted to protecting tasks on schedule, on price range, and on the right track. Most venture administration software program consists of options like time monitoring, file sharing, communication, process administration, and reporting instruments.

What is the distinction between process administration and undertaking administration software program?

Generally, process administration software program is designed extra for people than groups. Merchandise marketed for process administration often don’t have a lot in the best way of communication instruments or file sharing, as an alternative specializing in preserving a single individual on schedule. These are often out there for free, as they don’t have the breadth of instruments you’ll discover in most undertaking administration software program.

What number of venture administration software program merchandise ought to I check earlier than shopping for?

We advocate making an attempt out three choices. Based on analysis from Capterra, those that demoed three merchandise reported being probably the most glad with their selection. Fewer than that didn’t give them sufficient info, and extra proved to be an excessive amount of. Each software program has a studying curve, and it’s straightforward to grow to be overwhelmed in the event you check too many merchandise. Setting clear requirements on what options you want and what price range you’re working with will do lots of the heavy lifting for you.

What ought to I look for when testing venture administration software program?

By the point you’re prepared to check challenge administration software program, you’ve doubtless picked a number of choices which have all of the options and instruments you’ll want. Listed here are a number of the issues it is best to look for in testing:

  • An interface that’s intuitive to navigate and study
  • Responsive customer support that’s reachable by e-mail, telephone, or chat
  • Practical cellular and desktop apps
  • Integrations with different software program that your workforce makes use of

The Best Project Management Software: Summed Up

Asana Basecamp monday.com Informal Trello Best for… Activity Management Communication Newbies Visible Thinkers Free Project Management Software Month-to-month Worth (Paid Yearly) Beginning at $6.25 per consumer $99 per thirty days (no annual low cost) Beginning at $25 Beginning at $7 Free model Third-Get together Storage Field, Dropbox, Google Drive, OneDrive None Dropbox, Google Drive Field, Dropbox, Google Drive, OneDrive Field, Dropbox, Google Drive, OneDrive Communication App Integrations Slack, Hipchat, Microsoft Groups None Slack None Slack Desktop App X ✔ ✔ X ✔ Cellular App Score App Retailer: four.eight (1,993 critiques)
Google Play: four.three (20,694 critiques) App Retailer: four.7 (14,301 evaluations)
Google Play: four.four (2,654 critiques) App Retailer: three.6 (98 evaluations)
Google Play: four.7 (628 evaluations) App Retailer: 2.eight (6 critiques)
Google Play: three.zero (21 critiques) App Retailer: four.7 (1,536 critiques)
Google Play: four.5 (71,357 evaluations) Free Trial 30 days 30 days 30 days 14 days Free model