Best Project Management Tools for 2022
Businesses of all sizes can greatly benefit from project management practices. Implementing a project management tool allows companies to save time and cost, as well as helping teams perform better. It supports the adoption of best practices that elevate work standards, reduce risks, and make way for higher profits.
Table of Contents
- Top Project Management Tools: Our Picks
- What Are Project Management Tools?
- Best Project Management Tools
- What Types of Project Management Tools Exist?
- Project Management Tool Features
- Buying Considerations
Top Project Management Tools: Our Picks
Here are our highly recommended project management tools for teams and businesses of all sizes:
What Are Project Management Tools?
Project management tools are affordable productivity systems. Most project management tools are available as software-as-a-service that users can subscribe to on a monthly or annual basis. PM tools offer businesses the advantages of rapid deployment, minimum initial expense, and scalability, as well as accessibility via the web and mobile devices.
Project management tools include features and capabilities that enable teams to work collaboratively in real time. PM tools promote project visibility that allow for easier tracking and reporting for project managers. As SaaS, program management tools take care of system maintenance and feature updates for free, while also provides feedback mechanisms for user requests and suggestions.
Best Project Management Tools
The best project management tools support project managers, project teams, stakeholders, and the whole organization in delivering projects successfully. Project management tools help small teams adopt digital transformation, increasing company agility and resiliency. Here are some of the top-rated project management tools, in no particular order.
Zoho Projects is an online project management tool for businesses of all sizes. It is a one-stop project management solution for any team, whether enterprise or small business. It has users in the construction, software development, real estate, education, and marketing industries. The project management app offers a free plan for a small team of three users, and paid plans for bigger teams.
Zoho Projects can provide unlimited projects, ready-to-use templates, and online storage space to centralize project information. Users can manage tasks, subtasks and dependencies, receive reminders, build schedules, and automate processes. The project management app also includes time tracking, resource management, custom views, and team collaboration tools.
- Free plan for a small team
- Interactive Gantt chart with dependencies and critical path plotting
- Automatic notifications
- Needs additional templates
- Users wish for direct, two-way integration with Power BI and Microsoft Project
Jira Work Management
Jira Work Management is one of the best project management tools that connects all business teams. Marketing, HR, finance, and other departments can easily connect and collaborate with technical teams with this platform. Task management features in this project management app enable users across the organization to plan, track, manage, and complete tasks, including repeating tasks. It is free for up to 10 users with scalable paid plans for bigger teams.
Jira Work Management allows users to create and manage unlimited tasks and projects. Users have access to multiple views such as list, timeline, calendar, and board for different perspectives. A drag-and-drop builder lets users create forms to standardize work; automation rules offer multiple actions to choose from. Other features include templates, dependency management, reports, dashboards, and integrations.
- Time-saving automations
- Multiple work views
- Free plan for a small team
- Calendar view needs enhancements
- Users wish for simpler customization for reports and dashboards
Asana work management software enables project and task management across the organization. It provides teams an organized workspace where they can look at project data using different work views such as list, timeline, and board. Users can create and assign tasks, build plans, and track project progress over time, as well as customizing workflows.
Asana is free for up to a team of up to 15 members. This versatile project management tool is applicable for tracking bugs and managing sprints, as well as planning and running campaigns, events, and product launches. The project management app has built-in messaging, file storage, a workflow builder, unlimited dashboards, custom fields, forms, automation, mobile apps, portfolios, workload management, approvals, and proofing.
- Project organization and task management
- Comprehensive set of features
- Free plan for individuals and teams
- Needs better data export functionality
- Users wish for more how-to guides and case studies to maximize use
Wrike is a project management tool that helps teams be more adaptable to new ways of working. It is versatile for different teams, such as marketing, design, professional services, product management, and business operations. The project management app can easily adapt to a variety of business needs, whether for managing agile teams, clients, or remote workers.
Wrike offers a free plan to unlimited users with basic functionality that can be sufficient to manage simple projects. Paid plans include more advanced features, such as shareable dashboards, interactive Gantt charts, custom fields and workflows, automation, and productivity integrations. Enterprise plans have additional security features such as SSO, 2FA, password policies, custom roles, and audit reports suitable to hybrid workspaces.
- Task management
- Project visibility and tracking
- Free plan with unlimited users
- Mobile app needs enhancements
- Users feel the UI could use more colors for easier differentiation
monday.com Work OS
monday.com Work OS is an online work platform that is customizable for various teams, workflows, and use cases. The highly visual project management tool provides a central workspace for users across the organization. Automation, notifications, and team collaboration simplifies management of any kind of work.
The project management tool lets users modify views and dashboards so they get the right information to make confident decisions. monday.com offers a free plan for up to two seats and several paid plans for teams with different work requirements. It has ready-to-use templates, unlimited boards, interactive documents, and custom fields. The software also provides mobile apps, file management, project portfolio management, email integration, calendar sync, and analytics and reporting.
- Task management, creation, and prioritization
- Team collaboration
- Responsive support
- Visual UI takes time to get used to
- Users wish for additional third-party integrations
Mavenlink resource and project management tool is an ideal solution for professional services firms. It also helps companies to maximize resources across all projects. The integrated PSA features allow users to quickly address staffing demands, so users can find available resources with the right skills and experience.
Mavenlink gives teams needed control across projects and accounting. It has real-time resource management, skills management, a project portfolio view, visual task management, and time tracking. The software also has tools for seamless team collaboration, project accounting, and real-time financial insights.
- Integrated project accounting and financial tracking
- Improved project transparency
- Third-party integrations
- Needs simpler UI workflows
- Missing an issue management feature
Teamwork is a project management tool for teams working on client projects. A central platform lets users manage projects, clients, freelancers, and internal teams with all the features needed to get work done. The PM tool is for companies of all sizes, with a free plan for individuals and premium scalable plans for different teams.
Teamwork provides ready-to-use project templates, multiple work views, team management, time tracking, resource management, and automations. It is collaboration-ready with integrated chat, a document editor, intake forms, notebooks, and followers. Other features are invoicing, billing, custom fields, dashboards, reports, and integration to Teamwork apps and third-party apps.
- Task management, prioritization, and automation
- Comprehensive set of features
- Free plan for a small team of five members
- Requires time for familiarization
- Users wish for faster, automated set up of default projects
Basecamp is a project management tool with integrated team communication that’s suitable for all types of work environments — especially remote working. It helps companies, teams, and individuals organize tasks, find the information they need quickly, and get real-time project progress updates. Everyone involved can collaborate with dedicated tools for project planning, sharing files, or discussing ideas.
Basecamp offers a business plan with fixed monthly pricing that includes all features for unlimited users and unlimited projects. A free plan is also available for a team of up to 20 users. The PM tool includes a to-do list, schedule, docs and files, charts, and automated reports. Users can choose to communicate with message boards, group chat, and direct messages.
- Seamless communication and collaboration
- Configurable notifications
- Free plan with basic features
- Single pricing plan is not ideal for small teams
- Users wish for more drag-and-drop UI capabilities
Workzone is a project management tool with feature-rich software that is easy to use for all types of real-world project challenges. It promotes transparency, so users can easily visualize where projects stand; all stakeholders can request, share, review, and approve documents easily online.
Workzone lets users manage tasks, projects, and project portfolios. It has interactive dashboards that allow users to switch from overview to details quickly. It also has to-do lists, Gantt charts, dependencies, time tracking, group calendars, and templates. Other features include status alerts, request forms, workload reports, image markup, and file versioning.
- Task management and scheduling
- Project progress tracking
- Responsive support
- Occasional issues with approval flow routing
- Users wish for more intuitive navigation
Freedcamp offers a set of project management tools that offer teams a comprehensive list of features to successfully complete any project. It has multiple work views like task management list, Gantt chart, Kanban board, and calendar. Users can organize their work into tasks and subtasks, private tasks, and milestones. They can also store and organize project files centrally with support for versions and comments.
Freedcamp offers a free plan that includes support for unlimited projects, tasks, users, and storage. Paid plans are also available with advanced features such as issue tracking, templates, reports, a wiki, CRM, and invoices. Other capabilities are third-party integration, and desktop and mobile apps.
- Intuitive user interface
- Email integration
- Free plan with essential features
- Mobile experience lags compared to the web version
- Users wish for better color schemes
What Types of Project Management Tools Exist?
There are many different types of project management tools that exist, this allows companies to find the perfect solution to their problems. Innovation in web, mobile, and data infrastructure technologies continue to provide companies more dynamic and interactive tools to manage projects. Here are some of the types of project management tools.
Cloud-based project management tools are easily accessible using web browsers. Project team members given the right access and permissions are able to enter, view, edit, and update data wherever they work.
Cloud-based software is available as a service and are initially more affordable and faster to implement than on-prem solutions. Customers are also able to save on maintenance costs. However, intensive customization is often limited or complex to implement.
On-premises project management tools are user-hosted and maintained within a company’s network by its own employees. Users are in charge of all hardware, software licenses, configuration, backup, and security. The company shoulders all expenses, from preparation and rollout to maintenance and upgrades. However, they have full control of customization, administration, and security access and permissions.
Integrated project management tools offer multiple work management features in one platform. Most PM tools cover the whole project lifecycle. However, some solutions also provide additional business tools such as client management, billing, invoicing, automation, and portfolio management.
Companies already using project management tools specially designed for their industry or workflow may need additional tools to improve performance. In these situations, they can add or integrate a specific or best-of-breed tool to enhance their project management solution. This tool can be for issue tracking, agile project management, portfolio management, or even a Gantt chart plugin.
Some industries have unique workflows that may be too complex for general project management tools. Industry-specific project management tools are designed to help users within specific industries, like construction or software development, manage special workflows, configurations, or regulations.
Project Management Tool Features
The best project management tools offer a variety of designs, methods, and capabilities, but some features are core to all of these applications.
- Task management enables users to create, organize, schedule, assign, update, and track tasks.
- Team collaboration allows team members to exchange information, hold discussions, post comments, give approvals, and access uploaded files on a shared workspace.
- Project planning enables users to identify goals, phases, tasks, dependencies, milestones, resources, and project timelines, mapping it all together in a project plan that is accessible to and updated for all involved.
- Time management is an essential feature to help project teams to log and measure time and effort against project schedule, deadlines, and budget.
- Reporting tools offer pre-built and custom dashboards, analytics, and templates for better tracking, accurate measurements, and improved implementation.
- Automation helps users to manage repetitive or recurring tasks to streamline processes and simplify administration.
- Integration extends or expands built-in capabilities by connecting to other tools.
- Customization allows users to adjust views and capabilities to match user needs more closely.
Small businesses need to replace spreadsheets and whiteboards with modern and affordable project management tools. Ideal PM tools for small businesses usually have:
- Free and scalable plans
- Highly visual tools
- All-in-one solutions
Midsize businesses are growing companies with teams that take on more complex projects. The following features will offer great advantages:
- Built-in communication and collaboration
- Time tracking
- Reporting and analytics
Enterprise businesses can maximize their infrastructure and resources with the right project management tool features:
- Integration and automation
- Real-time dashboards and reports
- Team management and user controls