Best Task Management Software & Tools

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Task management software, though similar to traditional project management software, offers specific features to help individuals get a better handle on project tasks and subtasks. Learn about the best task management software solutions, their pros and cons, key features, and more in this comprehensive buyers’ guide.

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Our Picks: Top Task Management Software


jira logo.

Best for Agile-Based Software Teams

Jira Work Management is a top-rated project and issue-tracking solution that is frequently used for granular task management. The software has a number of advanced features with workflows that are specifically designed with Agile, DevOps, IT service management, and work management teams in mind, though teams from other backgrounds can also benefit from Jira’s capabilities. Jira Work Management is especially well-suited to large project teams, as per-user pricing in the Standard plan scales down each time you rise to a new user count tier. The solution comes with unlimited tasks and projects.

JWM SS.

Example of a task tracking timeline in Jira Work Management. Source: Atlassian, accessed November 2023.

Key Features

Various project view options: Project views include List, Calendar, Timeline, and Boards views. List view makes it simple to edit tasks with in-line editing, Timeline helps teams to visualize project dependencies, and Boards is especially effective for task status tracking.

Industry-specific features and templates: Jira Work Management has many sprint-style, and Agile-specific features that make it a great fit for technical project teams. The product also comes with several other business project templates for marketing, HR, operations, design, finance, legal, and sales teams.

Well-integrated ecosystem: Jira Work Management integrates with other solutions in the Atlassian tool stack, including Jira Software and Confluence. Smart links, shared release dates, and automation help to connect projects and tasks across different departments and teams as necessary.

Pros

  • Automation options: Extensive automation capabilities are available even in the free plan.
  • Task customization: Highly customizable task issues for admin users.
  • Admin controls: Admins have the option to set up either team-managed or company-managed projects with granular tasks and dependencies.

Cons

  • Customer support: Limited customer support options.
  • Learning curve: Compared to other options, this solution has a high learning curve.
  • Project role limitations: Project roles are unavailable in the free plan.



Why We Picked Jira Work Management

Jira Work Management provides some of the best industry-specific features for task management, especially for more technical teams. It also has some of the most extensive integration and automation options on the list, particularly for users of other Atlassian products. Unlimited tasks are available in both the free and the paid plan option, and the free plan supports advanced features and capabilities for up to 10 users.


Read our review of Jira Work Management


clickup logo.

Best Free Plan Option

ClickUp is a project and task management solution with a very visual and simple-to-use interface. While it’s easy to keep your workspace organized and straightforward with simple tasks and subtasks, you can also power up your workflows with customizable ClickApps, task automations, custom fields, and various project views. Though there are still some limitations to the Free Forever plan, we’ve found that ClickUp’s free plan is one of the best for task management requirements, giving users access to unlimited tasks, task checklists, tags, dependencies, priorities, tasks and subtasks in multiple lists, and 24/7 customer support.

clickup timeline view.

This project for a product team visually displays tasks in ClickUp’s Timeline view. Source: ClickUp, accessed November 2023.

Key Features

Highly collaborative and visual task assignments: Tasks can be assigned to multiple users, and comments can be used to thread communication and tag other users on task updates. Comments can be set as action items, and images and screen recordings can be shared on tasks.

Granular task categorization and customization: Tasks can be grouped by category via Item Types, and custom statuses and fields are available to users. Additionally, tasks can be categorized and labeled with priorities, tags, relationships and dependencies, and checklists.

Several core and advanced view options for tasks: List, Board, and Calendar views are all available as core task management views. Advanced views include Map, Mind Map, Activity, Box, Gantt, Table, Timeline, and Workload views.

Pros

  • Generous free plan: The free forever plan provides users with access to nearly all relevant task management features and most project views.
  • Customization options: ClickUp’s interface is highly customizable, allowing users to create custom task statuses, fields, and views.
  • Support and education: Free training and 24-hour support are available to users.

Cons

  • Task ID limitations: Custom task IDs are only available in the Business, Business Plus, and Enterprise plans.
  • Limited guest access: Little to no guest access options are available in the free forever plan.
  • Lags and bugs: ClickUp users occasionally face some bugs, including slow load times and performance lags.

Why We Picked ClickUp

ClickUp is a user-friendly task management solution that offers users a number of intuitive project views and drag-and-drop functionality. It also has some of the most granular subtask management, task customization, and task labeling features in the market.


Read our review of ClickUp


monday logo.

Best for Task Automatio

monday work management is a top task management solution that can also be used for more robust project tasks, like project portfolio management and workflow automation. Some of its most advanced task management features include dashboards, recurring tasks, task templates, task ownership, time tracking, and task automation. monday work management has some of the best task-level automations available but manages to not compromise on ease of use; automations can be set up with simple triggers across projects and items. Keep in mind that most automations are only available for the three highest-tier plans.

monday board views for top project managament software buyers' guide.
monday team planning table view. Source: monday.com, accessed November 2023.

Key Features

Task dashboards and reporting: monday comes with a variety of dashboard widgets and reporting features. Dashboards can be used to look into task distribution, task type, and task status; custom metrics can be added as well.

Task ownership and user assignments: Adding custom people columns, monday.com users can assign tasks to specific users and nest assigned subtasks under those tasks as well. There’s also the option to assign multiple people to one task.

Task templates: monday.com offers over 200 prebuilt project and task templates in its library. While some templates are industry or use-case-specific, others are geared toward task and time management. One of the more popular templates available in monday.com is the “Design weekly tasks” template.

Pros

  • User-friendly automations: monday’s task automations that balance robustness with ease of use.
  • Template library: Extensive and highly customizable template library.
  • Widgets and reporting tools: Dashboard widgets and reporting tools are customizable and highly visual which makes it easier to

Cons

  • Free plan limitations: monday.com’s free plan option does not come with unlimited tasks/items.
  • Not the best choice for individual users: monday.com is less suited for individual task management and better suited for team-level collaboration and task management.
  • Plan upgrades: Certain advanced automations, integrations, and dashboard features are only available in the Enterprise-level plan.

Why We Picked monday work management

monday work management makes it so large teams can easily automate and template both projects and tasks, making it the ideal solution for enterprise teams that need collaborative task management and features like recurring tasks. It’s also a very visual tool with strong dashboard and reporting tools and a variety of task view options.


Read our review of monday work management


todoist logo.

Best for Task Gamification

Todoist is one of the most popular task manager and to-do list apps in the world today. Primarily accessed through its mobile app, individual users can use Todoist to manage recurring due dates, organize sections and subtasks, set priorities and reminders, delegate tasks, create personal task views, and manage tasks through a variety of formats. Tasks can specifically be added by forwarding emails to Todoist, and tasks can be supplemented with comments, file uploads, and calendar feeds. Todoist’s most unique feature is Todoist Karma, a feature that awards users with “points” each time they take steps toward meeting their productivity goals.

todoist screenshot.

An example of the checklist style to-do lists in Todoist. Source: Todoist, accessed November 2023.

Key Features

Task prioritization: Daily tasks can be prioritized with built-in priority levels. The Favorites feature is available to keep frequently used projects, labels, and filters at the top of your task view. For Pro and Business plan users, Reminders are available in a push notification format.

Workload sharing and task assignments: For Business plan users in particular, tasks can easily be delegated by searching for and clicking on the name of another user. Notifications let users know when they’re tagged in tasks or when people post comments or complete tasks.

Productivity management and visualization: Weekly and monthly productivity visuals are colorful and easy to read. Activity history and completed tasks archive can both be filtered by project or person. Todoist Karma gives individuals the power to track and reward their own productivity.

Pros & Cons

Pros

  • Easy-to-use: Dedicated task management and to-do list format makes this an easy-to-use tool.
  • Progress tracking: Productivity visualizations and the completed tasks archive make it easier to track task progress over time.
  • Todoist Karma feature: Todoist Karma adds a unique gamification and rewards system element to the solution.

Cons

  • Lack of integrations: Todoist does not offer or easily integrate with more advanced enterprise project management features and tools.
  • Lack of multi-user support: Only the Business plan is designed for multiple users.
  • Limited upload and storage capacity: Limited file upload and storage capacity compared to many other task management solutions.

Why We Picked Todoist

Overall, Todoist is easy to use and offers users strong progress-tracking features. It’s one of the only solutions with an effective approach to gamification that encourages users to achieve their goals in an engaging way. Nearly all major features are available in its free-to-use plan, and the app itself is incredibly mobile-friendly. Its paid plans are also the most affordable in this buyers’ guide.


Read our complete review of Todoist


asana logo big.

Best Task Templates

Asana is a cross-functional project management system that works well for task management purposes too. One of its greatest strengths is its broad collection of task templates, which can be accessed directly from a user’s project board. Users also have the option to create custom task templates, adjusting task type, task title, assignee, relative due date, project, task dependencies, task description, subtasks, and more to fit specific project requirements. Beyond its templates, Asana is also a great solution for teams that want to incorporate time tracking, automations, and multiple view options into their task management workflow.

asana interface.

Asana’s task completion tracker. Source: Asana, accessed November 2023.

Key Features

Workflows and Rules: Workflow Builder is a low-code/no-code tool from Asana that makes it possible to automate task workflows and integrate them with over 200 third-party business applications. Rules is another automation feature that can automatically assign tasks, send notifications, and adjust project and task timelines.

Multi-Homing and dependencies: With Asana’s multi-homing feature, users can track, manage, and update tasks that live in multiple places; when they update the task in one location or project, it is automatically updated in other locations as well. Tasks can also be marked as having dependencies, making it so users know if they are able to complete their tasks yet or not.

Multiple project views: List, Board, Calendar, and Timeline views are all available to Asana users. Timeline view allows users to visualize tasks and their dependencies in a Gantt-like format. The calendar view makes it easier to track task deadlines.

Pros

  • Multi-project tracking: Multi-homing feature makes it easy to track and update tasks across multiple projects at once.
  • Limitless task creation: Unlimited tasks are available in all plans.
  • High storage capacity: Asana offers a larger file storage capacity than most task management and project management competitors.

Cons

  • Free plan limitations: A handful of task features, like task dependencies and task templates, are not available in the free plan.
  • Solo assignees: Each Asana task can only have one assignee.
  • Expensive for larger teams: Asana can quickly get expensive for larger teams that need Premium-level or Business-level features.

Why We Picked Asana

A variety of task-specific templates are available to Asana users. The Workflow Builder makes it easy to automate task workflows and set up integrations. Additionally, multi-homing is a unique feature that makes it easy to manage task dependencies and tasks that are part of multiple project workflows. Finally, Asana includes unlimited access to many features, including unlimited tasks, even in its free plan option.


Read more with our Asana review

Trello logo.

Best for Ease of Use

Trello is a sleek, Kanban board-focused task management system that enables users to assign tasks, track their progress toward completion, and automate workflows. Each task within Trello corresponds to an individual task card where users can attach files, add notes, and tag other users in comments which are relayed as notifications. As tasks move toward competition, users can drag each card into their respective columns, “to do”, “doing”, and “done”. 

Trello interface.

Example of Trello’s Kanban-style interface. Source: Atlassian, acessed November 2023.

Key Features

Subtask checklists: Users can break down tasks into smaller tasks using the subtasks checklist feature, which makes it easier to organize larger tasks in one card.

Workflow automations: Commands and automated rules help automate menial tasks and speed up workflows. 

Integration options: Over 200 integration options are available to make it easier for teams to connect their existing tech stack with applications such as Salesforce, Slack, and Google Drive.

Pros

  • Intuitive interface: Trello is extremely easy to learn and navigate, with drag-and-drop-focused functionality.
  • Great task management: Detailed task card options, subtask checklists, and the ability to collaborate underneath individual tasks make Trello stand out for task-management-focused users.
  • Multiple views: While Trello is Kanban-focused, it also offers dashboard, table, calendar, and timeline views.

Cons

  • Limited reporting options: Compared to the other top picks, Trello offers limited data analytics and reporting features.
  • Limited free plan: The free plan has severe limitations, with attachment file limits, limited features, and few integrations.
  • Notification issues: Some users report missing notifications and struggling to get updates due to poor organization of notifications.

Why We Picked Trello

Trello is a powerhouse for task management with an easy-to-use interface that anyone can learn to use in minutes. The ability to break down tasks into subtasks all within one card is convenient and the features that aren’t as strong, such as reporting options, can be compensated for through the use of integrations.


Read our review of Trello


Pricing Comparison

Our PicksBest ForPricing Starts At
jira work management logo.

Visit Jira Work Management
Best for Agile-Based Software TeamsFree to try • $5/user/mo.

See details
Full ClickUp Logo.

Visit ClickUp
Best Free Plan OptionFree to try • $5/user/mo.

See details
monday.com logo.

Visit monday
Best for Task AutomationFree to try • $9/user/mo

See details


Visit Todoist
Best for Task GamificationFree to try • $4/user/mo.

See details
Asana big logo.

Visit Asana
Best Task TemplatesFree to try • $10.99/user/mo.

See details


Visit Trello
Best for Ease of UseFree to try • $5/user/mo.

See details

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Methodology

How We Chose Our Top 6 Task Management Solutions

In order to complete this buyer’s guide, I assessed over 25 task management solutions. The top selections were chosen by experimenting with the features available in various task management tools, reading customer reviews across review sites, reviewing product pages and documentation, comparing pricing, considering industry-specific features and differentiators, and focusing on the quality of the user experience.


Read More: Top 10 Project Management Software

FAQ: What Are Task Management Software’s Key Features?

Task scheduling and automation features are helpful for scheduling and planning for recurring tasks, simplifying task and subtask workflows, and making sure next steps and dependencies are considered during each task stage of a project. Look for tools that make it easy to schedule tasks and set up automatic task assignments and notifications.

Especially for complex or long-term projects, tasks often develop into their own miniature projects that require subtasks to stay on track. Not all software platforms make it easy to nest or add subtasks to a project planning board, so be on the lookout for tools that allow you to include subtasks and dependent tasks when necessary.

When using task management software as a team, it’s important to assign tasks to specific users so no deadlines or important steps fall through the tasks. Look for software that allows you to assign individual tasks to single or multiple users, depending on what you need, and prioritize solutions that include built-in messaging, tagging, and other notification features.

Oftentimes, tasks overlap, intersect, and generally become overwhelming. Toggling from one task view to another can help you get a fresh visual on task timelines and overall project goals. Timeline, calendar, and Gantt-style views are some of the most helpful when visualizing granular tasks and subtasks.

Task management, especially in a team environment, is more effective when progress-tracking features are in place to measure performance and timeliness. Look for solutions with time tracking, workload management, progress visualizations, and gamification features to assist with progress tracking.

FAQ: What Are the Benefits of Task Management Software?

Task management software offers many benefits to project managers, project teams, and even individuals who want to better manage their workloads. Here are just a few of the benefits that come from using task management software:

Though task management software primarily benefits individuals, it is also helpful for teams that need better visibility into each other’s tasks. Task management software allows teammates to communicate on specific task threads without ever requiring them to work out of another app or system.

Instead of simply getting broad visibility into project progress, task management software makes it easy for project managers to drill down and see how individual task owners are tracking toward their goals.

For individual contributors, task management software can also be helpful for tracking progress and keeping tabs on upcoming deadlines. You don’t need to invest in expensive or bulky project management software to reap the benefits of task management and to-do list features.

Especially if you’re regularly using task ownership and assignment features, it will quickly become apparent if you’re overworking certain team members. Many task management solutions also include workload and capacity management features to help you better distribute tasks among your teammates.

In broader project management setups, smaller tasks and subtasks often get lost in the shuffle of things. With dedicated task management software and features, teams can more easily visualize individual project components, dependencies, and impending deadlines for different segments of their work.

FAQs: What Are the Differences Between Task Management & Project Management?

While project management software focuses on project(s) as a whole and all of the communications and workflows that go into them, task management software gets more specific, looking at tasks, subtasks, and action items on a more individual basis. In many cases, task management features are provided as part of a project management software solution.


Check out our comprehensive Top 10 Project Management Software Buyers’ Guide


Google has a limited task management solution called Google Tasks, which can be downloaded and used in sync with other Google Workspace apps. Many Google users use Google Tasks in combination with Google Keep, Google Sheets, Gmail, and Google Calendar to  comprehensively manage their tasks.

CRM task management is a specific type of task management that helps marketers and salespeople set, assign, automate, and otherwise manage tasks related to the customer lifecycle in a customer relationship management (CRM) platform. An example of a CRM task management solution is HubSpot Task Management, which is offered as part of HubSpot’s Sales Hub.


Also see: Marketing Project Management Software Buyers’ Guide


The best task management software will depend on the number of users, the complexity of their tasks, and the types of projects the team is working on. For more complex tasks or projects, a robust system like Jira Work Management, monday Work Management, or ClickUp is preferred; for users looking for an easy-to-use task management solution that works well for individuals, Todoist is a great option. 

How to Choose the Best Task Management Solution

Choosing the right task management solution for an individual or a business can be difficult because each tool operates a little differently. While some solutions are designed to work well with large teams and their requirements, others cater to the needs of individuals and small teams.

If you’re most concerned with ease of use and don’t need advanced project management or collaboration features, go with a simple task management solution like Todoist or Trello.

Task-management-only solutions like Todoist don’t always have the most advanced features available to users, but they’re typically low-cost, easy to use, and designed with the needs of individual users in mind.

If your company prioritizes high levels of integration and automation, a more robust solution like JIra Work Management, monday Work Management, ClickUp, or Asana is a better fit.

These tools offer advanced project management features on top of task management, including project portfolio management and issue tracking features.

  • 12/28/23 – Added a condensed list of our reviewer’s picks; added a pricing comparison table. —Web Webster

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