5 Best Government Project Management Software

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There are many project management software tools available in the market, but not all of them are suitable for the government sector. Government projects often have specific requirements, such as security, compliance, transparency, and scalability needs. Here are our picks for the PM solutions that are well-suited for working with teams in the government sector.

Our PickBest ForPricing Starts At

GovSense Logo.


Try GovSense
Best for Local Governments to Use Across Departments Unpublished, call for pricing.

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Smartsheet Gov Logo.

Try Smartsheet Gov

Best for High Standards of Data Protection and PrivacyFree to try • Paid plans from $7/user/monthmonth/user

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Deltek Costpoint Logo.

Try Deltek Costpoint
Best for Government ContractorsFull Office Suite from $46/user/month

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GovCon Logo.

Try GovCon
Best for Project Financials and AccountingNot published, contact sales for a quote

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Liquid Planner Logo.
Try Liquid Planner
Best for Large Organizations with Multiple ProjectsPlans start at $15/user/month

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Our Picks:

govsense logo.

GovSense: Best for Local Governments to Use Across Departments

GovSense is a cutting-edge, cloud-based project management software designed for government agencies and organizations. It helps you to improve efficiency across all departments, simplify processes, enhance communication between local government leaders and their constituents, and secure your data with the best system in the industry. Whether you need to run a small town or a large city, GovSense can meet your current and future needs, saving you time and money with better transparency and smoother operations.

Image showing GovSense software device options.
GovSense software device options

GovSense Key Features

Notable key features of GovSense for government project management include:

  • Workflows: GovSense allows users to create and customize workflows for any use case, such as planning, permitting, licensing, inspections, and enforcement. Users can streamline and automate processes, assign tasks, track progress, and collaborate with other departments and stakeholders. This feature is relevant because it can improve efficiency, transparency, and accountability in government project management. It is better than competitors because it can adapt to any jurisdictional workflow without the need of an IT professional or knowledge of source codes.
  • Reporting & Dashboards: With GovSense, you can create and view reports and dashboards for any data within the application. You can set up, save, schedule, run, and deliver reports and dashboards at any time or frequency. You can also use filters, charts, graphs, and maps to display and examine data. This feature is helpful because it can offer insights, trends, and performance indicators for government project management. It is more helpful than competitors because it gives you the freedom and flexibility to customize your reports and dashboards according to your needs.
  • HCM/Payroll: GovSense combines human capital management (HCM) and payroll functionality into the same software suite that can be used to run every aspect of the organization. You can handle core HR and workforce processes, such as payroll, time-off management, HR reporting and analytics, and employee directory. This feature is important because it can help you manage your human resources and payroll tasks efficiently and accurately. It is superior to competitors because it reduces repetitive and manual processes and integrates with GovSense accounting features.

Pros & Cons

ProsCons
• True cloud solution that can be assessed anywhere on any device
• Integrated solution integrating many functions
• Allows seamless interdepartmental communication
• Can be customized per jurisdiction
• Steep cost for limited budgets
• Incompatibility with some existing systems
• May not meet specific needs of all agencies
• Complex customizations for high-end requirements

Why We Picked GovSense

GovSense is the best software for local governments to use across departments. It helps project managers enhance efficiency, transparency, integration, and scalability of their operations. Project managers can create and automate workflows, assign tasks, track progress, and collaborate with other departments and stakeholders. Users can access reports and dashboards that offer insights, trends, and performance indicators. 

We choose this option because GovSense is not just a software vendor, but a trusted advisor that provides solution recommendations based on the best interests of the jurisdiction.

smartsheet gov logo.

Smartsheet Gov: Best for High Standards of Data Protection and Privacy

Try Smartsheet Gov

Smartsheet Gov is a cloud-based software that offers solutions for government project management. It is a FedRAMP-authorized and DOD IL4-approved platform that allows federal agencies and contractors to improve operations, work together across departments, and make smarter decisions faster. Some of the features of Smartsheet Gov include various templates for different use cases, automated workflows, visual reporting and data dashboards, and the ability to custom-build a solution without coding. Smartsheet Gov can help you enhance the efficiency, transparency, integration, and scalability of your operations.

Smartsheet Gov Work Insights logo.
Smartsheet Gov Work Insights

Smartsheet Gov Key Features

These are a few key features of Smartsheet Gov that make it a powerful and user-friendly software for government project management:

  • FedRAMP Authorization: Smartsheet Gov is a cloud-based software that meets the FedRAMP Moderate baseline—a standardized set of security requirements by the U.S. government for cloud services—and has a Provisional Authority to Operate (P-ATO) from the Joint Authorization Board (JAB). This feature is important because it shows that Smartsheet Gov follows the highest standards of data protection and privacy for government agencies and contractors. It is superior to competitors because it is one of the few project management software that has achieved this level of authorization.
  • Templates and Solutions: With Smartsheet Gov, you can access various templates and solutions for different use cases, such as human capital management, acquisition management, logistics and supply chain management, and portfolio management and execution. These templates and solutions are ready-made sheets that help you to solve business needs quickly and efficiently. This feature is helpful because it saves you time and effort by providing you with ready-to-use solutions that are customized to the specific needs and challenges of government project management. It is more helpful than competitors because it offers out-of-the-box solutions that are designed for government project management.
  • Workflows and Automation: Smartsheet Gov software lets you create and automate workflows, assign tasks, track progress, and manage risks with a simple and intuitive interface. You can also use conditional logic, alerts, reminders, approvals, and update requests to improve and optimize your processes. This feature is important because it can enhance efficiency, transparency, and accountability in government project management. It is superior to competitors because it can fit any workflow without coding or IT intervention.

Pros & Cons

ProsCons
• Designed to meet FedRAMP baseline and DISL IL4 authorization
• Pre-built sheet templates
• Automated workflows
• Security and compliance
• Scalability
• Long learning curve
• Template limitations
• Less than optimal customer support
• Compatibility with existing tools

Why We Picked Smartsheet Gov

If you are looking for a project management tool that is secure, reliable, and effective, you might want to consider Smartsheet Gov. This is a cloud-based software that helps federal agencies collaborate and manage their projects and complies with the highest standards of data protection and privacy for government agencies and contractors. It meets the FedRAMP Moderate baseline, a standardized set of security requirements by the U.S. government for cloud services, and has a Provisional Authority to Operate (P-ATO) from the Joint Authorization Board (JAB). It also supports the Single Sign-On (SSO) sign-in option and requires Multi-Factor Authentication (MFA) to maintain compliance with FedRAMP requirements.

Smartsheet Gov offers the same core functionality as Smartsheet, without writing a single line of code. You can use a variety of templates and solutions for different use cases, such as human capital management, acquisition management, logistics and supply chain management, portfolio management and execution, and more. You can also create and automate workflows, assign tasks, track progress, and manage risks with a simple and intuitive interface. We found this option to be unique due to its use of sheets and robust in its reporting and dashboard customizations.

Deltek Costpoint logo.

Deltek Costpoint: Best for Government Contractors

Try Deltek CostPoint 

Deltek Costpoint is a cloud-based ERP and project management and accounting solution that caters to the needs of government contractors and other project-based businesses. It has a range of features that help with budgeting, planning, time tracking, reporting, and compliance with government regulations. 

One of the features that makes Deltek Costpoint stand out is its advanced project accounting capabilities, which help organizations track, manage, and report on project profitability with accuracy. It also has a strong suite of human capital management (HCM) and manufacturing features that differentiate it from other solutions. 

By integrating project information with financial and labor metrics, Deltek Costpoint gives organizations a complete view of project performance. Furthermore, its ability to comply with various government standards, including DCAA CAS, DCMA, ASC, NIST, FAR, FedRAMP, and CMMC, makes it a valuable tool for government contractors who want to simplify their processes and ensure regulatory adherence.

Deltek CostPoint
Example of Deltek CostPoint.

Deltek Costpoint Key Features

  • Contract Management: Track and manage your contract costs and values. You can also record contract changes, Federal Acquisition Regulation clauses, Organizational Conflicts of Interest, and Limitations of Costs. This feature lets you handle any contract type, from Firm Fixed Price to Cost Plus, with processes and workflows that comply with the FAR.
  • Regulatory Compliance and Security: Costpoint complies with DCAA requirements for accounting and time-keeping and provides support and guidance for FAR, CAS, DCMA, and ASC. It also meets cybersecurity regulations with a provider that implements NIST controls and aligns with FedRAMP Moderate. Finally, the app stays up to date with changing industry regulations, such as CMMC requirements.
  • Manufacturing Business Intelligence: CostPoint’s Manufacturing Data Model is designed to help you see the impact of Engineering Change Order before you execute it, by helping visualize your manufacturing process by part, process, and more, along with supporting compliance, security, and traceability.
  • Project Accounting Deltek Costpoint: has project accounting capabilities that give you detailed insights into your project costs and revenue, helping you track your financial performance with accuracy. Unlike some competitors, Deltek Costpoint focuses on government contracting, which means its project accounting features are designed to help you comply with complex regulations, a big advantage for government contractors.
  • Human Capital Management (HCM): Costpoint has an HCM module so you can manage your workforce easily. It covers payroll, benefits, and talent management, and it seamlessly connects with the project accounting and manufacturing modules. This integration gives you an edge over many competitors, as you can track and allocate labor costs to projects accurately and improve your project profitability analysis.

Pros & Cons

ProsCons
• Project accounting closely monitors costs and revenues
• HCM workforce management
• Regulatory compliance and security
• Scalability
• 40 years of industry expertise
• Less intuitive and visually unappealing interface
• Slow to respond customer service
• Limited customizations
• Vague and unhelpful error messages
• High cost of ownership

Why We Picked Deltek Costpoint

Deltek Costpoint is a sophisticated project management solution tailored to address the complex needs of government contractors and project-driven businesses. Known for its deep capabilities in project accounting, human capital management, and manufacturing processes, it provides a holistic view of project performance by integrating project information with financial and labor metrics. This comprehensive perspective is invaluable for driving strategic decision-making, optimizing resource allocation, and maintaining fiscal control, factors that make Deltek Costpoint stand out among its competitors.

The system’s robust compliance features are specifically designed to help organizations adhere to the rigorous requirements of government contracts. This includes compliance with Defense Contract Audit Agency (DCAA) audits and Federal Acquisition Regulations (FAR), functionalities that aren’t as robust or focused in many alternative solutions. Many customers praise the software’s scalability, which allows it to adapt to the growth and changing needs of evolving organizations. Despite a somewhat steep learning curve, organizations that invest in mastering Costpoint’s functionalities tend to reap substantial benefits in project profitability, operational efficiency, and regulatory compliance. With these capabilities, Deltek Costpoint is definitely worth considering for government project management, particularly for government contractors looking for a comprehensive, compliant, and scalable solution. We have found this to be a top choice tailored specifically to this vertical.

Unanet GovCon logo.

Unanet GovCon: Best for project Financials and Accounting

Try Unanet GovCon

For government contractors, GovCon is a powerful solution that integrates project management and accounting in one platform. It gives you real-time insights that help you make better decisions. You can manage your project accounting with ease, from budgeting to invoicing to revenue recognition. You can also track your time and expenses with accuracy, ensuring compliance with DCAA and FAR regulations. Moreover, you can plan and forecast your resources effectively, matching them to your project needs. Unanet GovCon is a comprehensive tool that boosts your efficiency, profitability, and compliance in government project management.

GovCon dashboard

Key Features of GovCon

  • Project Accounting: Project accounting is one of Unanet GovCon’s main features. It lets you see your project costs, revenue, and profitability in detail. Unlike some other solutions, Unanet GovCon gives you real-time data, which helps you make smart business decisions and report your financials accurately and promptly.
  • Compliance Support: Meet compliance with the regulations of government contracts, such as DCAA guidelines and FAR rules. This is a unique feature of Unanet GovCon, as many other project management tools don’t have such comprehensive or focused support for government compliance needs.
  • Resource Planning and Forecasting: Get help allocating your resources effectively and planning for future project needs. Unanet GovCon has an edge over other tools, as it connects resource management to project accounting, which improves efficiency and project success.
  • Time and Expense Management: Time and expense tracking is a strong feature that lets you record labor and out-of-pocket costs easily. This is very helpful for government contractors who have to track and report these expenses accurately for billing and compliance reasons.
  • Integration Capabilities: Unanet GovCon connects with many different systems, giving you a single source of data for your project and financial information. This integration is not common in other products, which makes Unanet GovCon a more efficient and streamlined tool for project management.

Pros & Cons

ProsCons
• Resource planning and forecasting
• Financials and time and expense management
• Regulatory compliance support
• Supports any contract type
• Integrates with a wide range of systems
• Dated and cluttered user interface
• Some bugs and glitches interfere with accuracy and reliability
• High price point
• Inefficient customer support

Why We Picked GovCon

Unanet GovCon is a powerful solution for government contractors, as it integrates project management and accounting in one platform. You can manage your project budget, invoicing, and revenue recognition with accuracy and efficiency, thanks to its robust project accounting capabilities. You can also see your project costs and revenues in real-time, which helps you make better decisions and report your financials accurately and promptly. It also helps you comply with the regulations of government contracts, such as DCAA guidelines and FAR rules.

The software lets you plan and forecast your resources effectively, matching them to your project needs and connects with many different systems, giving you a single source of data for your project and financial information. GovCon may have a learning curve and higher costs than some other tools, but it offers advanced features and scalability that make it worth it. It can grow with your organization and meet your long-term project management needs. This is a stand-out option that has been specifically designed to work with the intricacies and demands of government-related projects and work efforts.

liquidplanner logo.

LiquidPlanner: Best for Large Organizations with Multiple Projects

Try LiquidPlanner

LiquidPlanner is a flexible project management solution that can handle changing priorities and resource availability in real time. It has a unique predictive scheduling engine that automatically adjusts timelines based on resource availability, project priorities, and the uncertainty of task estimates. This can help you manage your government projects and portfolios of work more effectively and deal with shifting priorities and deadlines more easily. 

LiquidPlanner also has a comprehensive set of project management tools, such as resource management, time tracking, document storage, and collaboration features. You can use its dashboard and analytical tools to see your project status, resource allocation, and performance metrics clearly, which can help you make better decisions.

LiquidPlanner dashboard
LiquidPlanner dashboard

LiquidPlanner Key Features

LiquidPlanner has many advanced features that make this a must-see solution:

  • Predictive Scheduling: LiquidPlanner has a unique feature that sets it apart from other project management solutions. It has a predictive scheduling engine that can automatically update timelines based on changing priorities, resource availability, and task uncertainty. This can be very useful for government project management, where you need to be able to adapt to changes quickly and effectively.
  • Workload and Resource Management: Manage your resources effectively and avoid overbooking them. Resource management tools let you allocate your resources optimally and monitor their workload. This can be very helpful for government agencies that have multiple projects and resources to manage. It can improve your efficiency and prevent your resources from getting burned out.
  • Ranged estimation: Plan your projects more realistically and account for the unknowns. It has a feature that lets you use ranged estimates for each task. You can enter a best-case and a worst-case estimate, and LiquidPlanner will calculate the probability of completion and the expected finish date. This helps you capture uncertainty and risk in your project planning.
  • Collaboration Tools: LiquidPlanner has built-in collaboration tools that help you communicate and coordinate with your team. You can use comment threads, document storage, and checklists to share information and feedback. These tools can make a big difference in government project management, where you need to collaborate effectively to execute your projects.
  • Time Tracking: LiquidPlanner helps you track your project work hours accurately. It has a time tracking feature that lets you record how much time you spend on each task. This can be very helpful for government contractors who have to track and report their hours accurately for billing and compliance reasons.

Planner Pros & Cons

ProsCons
• Organizes large-scale projects and portfolios
• Flexible for any size organization
• Easy to use
• Robust professional services
• No dedicated mobile app
• Lack of native integrations

Why We Picked LiquidPlanner for Government Project Management

LiquidPlanner is a powerful solution for government project management, especially for enterprise organizations with multiple projects and portfolios. It has a unique predictive scheduling engine that can automatically update timelines based on changing priorities, resource availability, and task uncertainty. It lets you plan and allocate your resources optimally, monitor their workload, and track their time and expenses accurately, improving project efficiency, outcomes, and compliance. You can also use LiquidPlanner’s dashboard and analytical tools to see your project status, performance metrics, and portfolio views clearly, which can help you make better decisions and report your financials accurately and promptly. This robust tool also has built-in collaboration tools that help you communicate and coordinate with your team using comment threads, document storage, and checklists to share information and feedback. 

LiquidPlanner may have a learning curve and higher costs than some other tools, but it offers advanced features and scalability that make it worth it. It can grow with your organization and meet your long-term project management needs. We love and recommend this option because of its ability to handle thousands of projects with ease while leveraging a proprietary predictive scheduling engine.

Methodology

We looked at 15 different project management software, including some top-rated ERP options, focusing on essential features for government projects, like security and compliance. We also compared their main features, pricing plans, pros and cons, security and compliance standards, and any unique capabilities that set them apart from the rest.

This included a careful analysis of the software products’ websites, reading industry reviews, unearthing a range of user feedback and testimonials, and following discussions within professional groups on social media. We watched informative how-to videos and demos, perused insightful blogs, chatted with project and portfolio managers using them, and considered any previous knowledge and experience working with some of these tools in the past.

FAQ: What Are the Key Features of Government Project Management Software?

Government projects often involve sensitive or classified information that needs to be protected from unauthorized access. Project management software for the government should meet the highest standards of security and compliance, such as FedRAMP, DOD IL4, DCAA, CAS, DCMA, ASC, NIST, and CMMC requirements. Encryption, access controls, and audit logs can help protect information and meet strict government security standards.

Government projects often require careful allocation and utilization of resources, such as staff, equipment, materials, or budget. Project management software should provide features such as resource planning, scheduling, forecasting, tracking, optimizing personnel and material resources, and reporting.

Work often involves collaboration and communication among team members and stakeholders across different agencies or organizations. Tools such as shared workspaces, real-time chat, commenting, mentions, permissions, and document sharing can facilitate communication and coordination among team members.

This includes budgeting, financial forecasting, cost management, and invoicing. Project accounting can provide real-time visibility into project finances for better financial decision-making and ensuring projects stay on budget.

There are almost always shifting priorities and deadlines. Software with dynamic scheduling can adapt to these changes in real time, helping to keep projects on track.

Projects can vary greatly in size and complexity, so it’s important that the software can scale to meet different project needs. This allows for growth and change over time, providing a long-term solution for project management needs.

FAQ: What Are the Main Benefits of Government Project Management Software?

A tool that automates repetitive tasks and streamlines workflows, reducing administrative overhead and allowing team members to focus more on their core responsibilities. This results in improved efficiency and productivity, which are crucial for successful project outcomes.

Integrated communication tools allow for real-time collaboration and information sharing among team members, departments, and even different government agencies. This promotes coordination, prevents miscommunications, and ensures everyone is on the same page, which can greatly improve project execution and results.

There is a need for real-time visibility into project progress, resource allocation, and performance metrics. This transparency holds team members accountable for their tasks and enables proactive identification and resolution of issues. It also promotes trust and credibility with stakeholders by showing that projects are being managed well.

With its ability to track project progress, monitor resource usage, and forecast project outcomes, project management software can help identify potential risks and issues early on. The result is proactive risk management, which can prevent minor issues from escalating into major problems and jeopardizing project success.

The ability to generate detailed reports on project performance, resource usage, and other key metrics is an important feature of any tool. This not only supports informed decision-making but also helps government agencies demonstrate compliance with regulations and accountability to stakeholders. Software with built-in support for government regulations can simplify compliance management and reduce the risk of non-compliance penalties.

FAQ: What Questions Should I Ask When Evaluating Government Project Management Software?

Compliance with regulations such as DCAA and FAR is essential for government project management. The software should ideally have built-in features that facilitate compliance, such as time tracking, audit trails, and secure data handling.

Given the sensitive nature of government data, the solution should have robust security features. This includes data encryption, access controls, audit logs, and adherence to cybersecurity standards like the FISMA or the NIST guidelines.

It should have a full suite of project management tools to facilitate planning, execution, and tracking of projects, including features like resource allocation, predictive scheduling, and real-time budget tracking.

A tool should be able to accommodate projects of varying sizes and complexities and be scalable to remain cost-effective as the scope of projects expands.

It is vital to have access to reliable customer support when you encounter issues with the software. The vendor should offer multiple support channels, such as phone, email, and live chat, and even provide resources for self-help, like knowledge bases, videos, or user forums.

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