Project management software makes it easy for managers and teams to plan, track, and collaborate on projects. Project management programs also help teams control costs, improve productivity, and meet deadlines. The best project management software for small teams typically includes pre-set workflow templates and a visual interface where users can track progress and assign tasks to one another.
The top project management tools are usually cloud-based and highly intuitive and require no coding or technical knowhow. Just choose the project management software you need for your team, set user permissions for each person, and watch productivity soar.
Project management software is actually quite a broad term encompassing a range of project management tools. Some project management software providers specialize in project management only. Others offer project management tools as part of a broader setup incorporating sales, marketing, and/or operations tools.
The best free project management software typically provides just a few basic tools for file sharing or communicating with one another. Subscription-based project management software may contain any number of features, including:
Like other Saas (software-as-a-service) platforms, the setup process really depends on how complex you want your features to be. The best project management tools can be used straight off the shelf or customized to suit your needs. For 99% of small businesses, it’s enough just to purchase project management software and use whatever features and integrations are on offer. For the 1% of businesses with the technical capabilities, you may also want to build your own custom tools and apps.
The best project management tools are easy to use, after all, the entire reason they exist is to improve your team’s workflow. With intuitive drag-and-drop functions and a user-friendly interface, it shouldn’t take more than a couple of hours for your team to be using your new project management software like pros.
You don’t have to be a Fortune 500 enterprise to get access to top project management tools. The best project management software for small teams can be had for as little as $5 per user per month, often after a free trial period. Good project management software is scalable, meaning you can start with a cheap (or free) plan and then upgrade to a more expensive package as your team – and needs – grow.
From a scan of the best project management software providers here’s what you can get at each price level:
If you only need a few basic functions for your team, then free project management software may be sufficient. Free project management tools may include file sharing, basic communication and collaboration (e.g. messaging), and basic project tracking. Many top project management providers operate on a freemium model where you get basic tools for free and start paying when you want to scale up.
In short, if you have a small team (less than four people) or only need basic functions, then the best free project management software may be good enough for you. But if you manage a larger team and want to supercharge productivity, then you’re better off looking for subscription-based project management software.
Project management programs are cloud-based, so safeguarding your security is essential. Through your admin controls, you’ll be able to decide which users have access to which features and how often users have to update passwords and security controls. The more you pay for your plan, the tighter the security features you’ll have at your disposal. Enterprise plans offer the greatest security, with the ability to implement two-factor authentication, custom password policies, and more.
When selecting a project management software provider, take a look at the security safeguards they have in place to protect users, including firewalls and encryption. Project management software reviews can help you identify which providers are serious about security and which aren’t.
Project management tools exist to improve your team’s productivity and ultimately cut costs and save time. However, a certain amount of research is required to find the right software for your team. Before selecting a provider, we recommend reading through project management software reviews, comparing the features they provide, and maybe even giving one to two providers a trial run.