The Best Project Management Software Tools.
Once the protection of large corporations with large budgets and specialized employees, tools for running projects of all sizes and styles are now extensively available.
Whether you’re an individual or small business trying to keep monitor of some projects, a multibillion-dollar company with a project portfolio to match, or something in between, it is now potential to search out cloud-based project management tools designed with you in thought.
Many have free plans with limited features to get you started, and nearly all are based mostly around a monthly subscription model. After that, there are almost as many pricing choices as there are different features, however, most organizations will be capable to discover a tool that fits their price range.
We’ve tracked down one of the best project management tools available on the market at this time, no matter the size of your team, project, or bank balance. (Best Project Management Software Tools)
The 7 Best Project Management Software Tools of 2022
- Best for Getting Started: Trello
- Best for Speedy Setup: Wrike
- Best for Collaboration: Basecamp
- Best Value: Zoho Projects
- Best Features: LiquidPlanner
- Best for Big Projects: Microsoft Project
- Best for Powerful Simplicity: Teamwork Projects
Trello – ( BEST FOR GETTING STARTED)
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Based on the Kanban card-based management system, Trello’s simple interface and generous free tier make it the ideal place for individuals and small teams to get started with basic project management.
Instead of traditional tools designed for managing resources and tracking progress by specific end date, Kanban-based apps like Trello are more free-form and flexible.
You can manage both individual projects and ongoing workflows equally well, and the board and card metaphors are easy to understand. With cards capable of including images and attached files, hyperlinks, custom dropdowns, due dates, and more, there’s a lot of power under the hood.
Once you finish with a particular card or the entire board, it can be stored to hide it from daily view, while accessing it if need be in the future.
The Basic free tier includes unlimited users and cards for up to 10 boards and just one “power-up” (ie, integration with other services) per board. Its unlimited storage is limited to 10 megabytes per file. Paid plans start at $10 per month with little or no limit.
Trello has very limited reporting built-in, and although third-party extensions add more options, you’ll still need to look elsewhere if detailed reporting is a major requirement. However, for everyone else, Trello is a great place to start with project management. It is available on the web, mobile, and desktop.
Wrike – (BEST FOR SPEEDY SETUP)
If Trello’s approach seems a bit limiting, but you don’t have the hours to dedicate to learning and setting up a complex project management tool, it’s time to look at Wrike.
Standard project management features like Gantt charts, useful dashboards, and a comprehensive reporting suite are built-in, and getting up and running on a small to medium-sized project can be done quickly without learning all the ins and outs of a new, complex system.
There is a time tracking tool built-in, which is available to both the person working on a particular task and the one who is managing the project as a whole. Like other project management tools, it is not a replacement for a dedicated time tracking system but handles the most basic needs with ease.
The interface is functional, and while it could do with a visual refresh, it’s just fine for the job. The free plan offers task management, interactive boards and spreadsheets, an account-wide work schedule tool, cloud integration (Google Drive, OneBox, Box, OneDrive), and two gigabytes of total storage space for unlimited users.
The paid plans are a bit more expensive than some of the competition, but open up all of the software’s options, from shareable dashboards, interactive Gantt charts, and productivity integrations like MS Projects to a professional level ($9.80 per month per user) begins;
and adding custom workflows, real-time reports, time tracking, Salesforce integration, and five gigabytes of storage per user at the Business tier ($24.80 per month per user). The wreck is available on the web, along with iOS and Android app versions.
Basecamp – (BEST FOR COLLABORATION)
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A veteran of the project management world, Basecamp was launched in 2004 and has garnered a customer base of 3.5 million users.
The software builds on its ability to replace many other paid monthly services, from Slack to Dropbox. While it is not always a complete replacement, the software takes many of the features of those tools and rolls them all into one system. Includes scheduling and calendar, real-time chat, private messaging, file storage, and more.
A streamlined interface and powerful search tools make it easy to find the task, image, or message you want, and a robust reporting suite lets you go as detailed or as deep as you need.
Working with customers is handled well, with e-mail integration and the ability to share personal tasks and messages with people outside the organization. Notifications can be customized to your needs, including turning them off outside of office hours.
Basecamp’s fixed $99 per month pricing makes it an attractive option for larger organizations, but smaller teams may find better value elsewhere. There is no free plan, but the 30-day trial period is more generous than the others. Web, desktop, and mobile versions are available.
Zoho Projects – (BEST VALUE)
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Part of a broad suite of productivity tools from the same company, Zoho Projects has almost all the standard features you’d expect from a project management app, at an especially affordable price.
Tasks can be viewed in either Kanban or more traditional styles, with dependencies set between each task. Tools like issue and workflow management, Gantt charts, and customized reporting mean that the tool can handle even relatively complex project requirements. There’s also strong integration with other services, both from Zoho’s own suite of apps and from major players like Google and Microsoft.
Basic time tracking is built-in, and although it doesn’t replace a dedicated tracking tool, it includes enough features to make it useful. Contacting other project team members can be done through the built-in chat app, which avoids having to jump to e-mail or external tools like Slack.
The free tier is limited to three users, with just 10 megabytes of storage and two projects. This is enough for small projects or to get a feel for the software, and all paid plans are available on a 10-day trial. Other plans that allow for more users, more projects, and more storage start range from $5 per user to $10 per user, and you can save 20% if you bill annually. Both web and mobile versions of Zoho Projects are available.
LiquidPlanner – (BEST FEATURES)
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LiquidPlanner is one of those pieces of software that tries to be many things to many, and unlike others with such grand ambitions, it usually succeeds.
In addition to being a powerful way to run traditional projects, with all the features you’d expect, LiquidPlanner performs equally well as a helpdesk-style issue tracker and general resource management tool.
Strong reporting is built-in, along with integrations with major cloud storage providers. There’s also Zapier support, so you can create your own automated connections with other business tools as needed.
One-time tasks can be assigned to any user or group, and the impact on the people performing that additional task is automatically taken into account when estimating project deliverables.
With additional features comes added complexity, and while LiquidPlanner does a good job of explaining and then getting out of the way of some of its trickier aspects, it still requires an investment of more time to set up, and learn, and master. its competitor. For this reason—not to mention the cost—it’s better suited to large teams and organizations than smaller, ad-hoc groups.
LiquidPlanner doesn’t offer a free tier, although you can try out different plans for two weeks at no cost. Plans start at $29 per user per month (with annual billing) for up to 50 projects and go up from there.
Microsoft Project – (BEST FOR BIG PROJECTS)
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Microsoft Project has existed in some form or the other since 1984, and it is still the favorite tool of many experienced project managers. With its high pricing and steep learning curve, it is aimed at those responsible for very large, complex projects who have the expertise, time, and budget to make the most of this comprehensive tool.
MS Project looks and feels like other Microsoft Office apps, but with few tutorials or hints, it can be daunting for newcomers to the project management space. However, trained professionals will appreciate the extremely fine detail available for each job and resource, whether that resource is a specific person, role, material, or something else.
Reporting is equally powerful, with both pre-built and customizable reports that can be quickly exported to Microsoft PowerPoint for those indispensable management summaries. However, integration with non-Microsoft tools is limited.
MS Project can be tacked on to an existing Office 365 subscription at two different price points, or purchased as a one-off piece of software to be installed on a single computer.
In 2021, Microsoft dropped the tier naming convention of Essentials, Professional, and Premium and replaced it with Project Plan 1, Project Plan 3, and Project Plan 5, leaving most plan features unchanged. Features vary between tiers, but subscription prices for Plan 3 (formerly Professional) start at $30 per user per month.
Teamwork Projects – (BEST FOR POWERFUL SIMPLICITY)
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If you’ve ever been bothered by the sheer complexity of using a fully-fledged project management system, it’s worth taking a look at Teamwork Projects. Despite its full feature set, the app’s interface is straightforward and easy to use, doing a good job of bringing out useful information without throwing endless lists and complicated charts at its users.
Tasks can be viewed as kanban boards or traditional lists, and the sensible menu options help you avoid the need to dig through multiple screens to find the details you need.
As with many other similar tools, Teamwork Projects lets you automate a variety of tasks, both within the app and using external tools and services. These types of integrations can be a real-time saver, although you’ll have to put in some effort for the initial setup.
The company offers several pricing options from a limited free tier, which allows only two projects and has limited storage space, to a high-end enterprise version. Most small teams will get the $10 per month per user plan because it includes unlimited users, 300 projects, and 100 gigabytes of storage space. All paid tiers offer a 30-day free trial. Mobile apps are available for iOS and Android along with the standard WebView.
What are Project Management Software Tools?
Project management software tools enable teams, small businesses, and individuals to keep track of projects in all their phases. These software tools can be used to work collaboratively and remotely on a project, add notes and deadlines, and track and update progress. Some software tools include search functions and email integration as well as organizational suggestions.
Who Uses Project Management Software Tools?
Project management software tools are used by: task force
small business owner
the person managing multiple projects
contractors and construction workers
How much do project management software tools cost?
Project management software tools differ from the basic versions to the more complex versions with built-in integration and search functions. There are free versions and paid versions, and some software tools offer monthly paid subscriptions. Expect to pay $10 to $99 per month, depending on how many users you have and what specific features you need.
Are Project Management Software Tools Worth the Cost?
Project management tools can be especially helpful in a team or remote work setting. They let multiple people work together in one place and collaborate, make notes, and meet deadlines.
If you’re just starting out and want to try out the software, it’s a good idea to try the free version. However, if you’re a large company or have multiple team members, it’s usually worth the cost to pay for project management software and get the job done.
How We Picked the Best Project Management Software Tools
We researched and selected the best project management software tools based on the features they offer, how they can be used by multiple users, and their device capabilities, functions, and prices, among other things.