Today there are 391 different project management software platforms for you to manage your projects. We spent 158 hours comparing the top 50 to find the five best you can use to increase your team productivity and get more projects done.
How We Decided
— We look at every tool in the market.
— We shortlist 50 for in-depth research.
— We recommend our top 5 picks.
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What is the Best Project Management Software?
Here are our top picks for the best project management software to try this year:
Our Verdict — Best Of The Best
Monday.com is versatile, affordable, and scalable. Its sleek interface and advanced features make it a fantastic tool, for any team size.
Get it if you want the smoothest user experience, and are willing to spend a little time customizing the software for your company’s needs.
If your team is in the hundreds of people, check ClickUp. Its low per seat price makes it more affordable for big teams.
I recommend you get started on the Standard plan (with automation) starting at $30/month.
(free 14-day trial)
What We Like
It’s User Friendly
The top reason Monday.com is our favorite project management tool is because it’s such a pleasure to use.
After the initial learning curve, you won’t spend a lot of time looking for stuff.
Even with the advanced stuff, like automations, it’s a breeze to set up. You just gotta follow their step-by-step tutorials and boom… you’re ready to rock.
They also offer templates for pretty much everything, so you don’t even have to start anything from scratch. Just choose one and customize it.
If you already have a little experience with project management tools, you’ll pick it up even faster. Anyway, I can’t stress enough how great their help documents are. They’ll hold you by the hand, and show you every little thing, step by step.
Last but not least, you can set up your project views any way you want. Kanban, task tables, Gantt charts, timeline views… You name it, Monday’s got it.
Whether you want to take a look at the big picture, or you want to check out your daily tasks, you can jump back and forth to whatever view suits you best.
When it comes to Monday.com’s setup, they take security a step further than most competitors.
They use the TLS protocol, AES-256 cipher (practically uncrackable), and are SOC-2 Type II certified, which means they’ve been audited and certified that they treat customer data the right way.
There’s a potential weak link in this setup though: the data is hosted with Amazon’s AWS, which is incredible - but suffers a problem of “leaky buckets” (more about this in the “what we don’t like” section.)
They have taken a lot of time thinking about how they can help businesses streamline their work hours, especially when it comes to repetitive tasks.
By eliminating a lot of redundant, menial work, you’ll improve the efficiency of your company as a whole.
The most beautiful part? It’s super easy to set up automations, as there are many templates for you to use, out of the box. All it takes is a couple of clicks.
As an example, you could set up Monday to create a task for everyone on Friday, reminding them to log their work hours. Or you could trigger automatic notifications, when tasks are overdue.
You’ll be able to use automations for stuff like recurring tasks, notifications, moving tasks from one board to another, and more.
What We Don’t Like
As we mentioned before, data security looks solid on Monday.com’s side.
But they host their files with AWS. Don’t get me wrong, they have amazing security, but there’s a problem with “leaky buckets” - that means, some companies have had important files exposed for anyone who wants to see it.
The real problem is that there can be human errors when setting AWS up. As long as whoever is handling those buckets has had enough coffee, you should be OK.
I bet that the team who created the price table isn’t the same team that created Monday.com’s user interface.
Their pricing options are unnecessarily complicated. First, you need to set how many users you need… then, you need to set a service tier.
The problem starts with the fact they have “group” pricing, instead of “single user pricing”. They don’t charge per person, but rather, they have groups of people up to a certain number. You can choose “up to” 3 users, 5, 10, 15… and so on. That means, if you have 7 people on your team, you’ll have to pay for 10 sets.
Then, the service tiers. You can choose from Basic, Standard, Pro, and Enterprise.
(There’s also a free tier, which you can only use for 2 users.)
A team of up to five people starts at $50 per month, and goes up to $100. A team of up to 20 people starts at $200 per month, and goes up to $400.
The Basic Plan Is Out Of Place
After Monday.com introduced their free plan, their basic plan kinda lost its sense.
The Basic plan has serious limitations. You don't get Timelines, Calendar views, Map views, advanced search, time tracking, or other features that Monday.com considers advanced. You don't even get integrations.
I have a hard time finding a compelling reason anyone would pay for the Basic plan.
On the other hand, their Standard plan is probably one of the best bang for buck you can get in the entire industry, starting at $30/month ($10 per user, for a minimum of 3 users.)
Monday Reviews From Experts
With Monday.com, we are 30% more efficient in delivering hundreds of campaigns, seen by millions of customers.
Since adopting Monday.com, our global marketing department has seen a 40% improvement in team collaboration to plan and execute successful end-to-end campaigns.
I personally love working remotely with all my colleagues and being able to follow all their projects with a few clicks. Also the feed for the company is very friendly and useful.
(free 14-day trial)
Our Verdict — Best Bang For The Buck
At $99 a month for unlimited users and unlimited projects, Basecamp offers a solid service, although it lacks the oomph of some of the main competitors.
Get it if you need 50+ seats, and want a simple, straightforward tool with a flat fee. Great if you feel you need to enable your team to collaborate better.
If you need less than 50 seats, or plan on getting something a little sleeker and more advanced, go with Monday.com instead.
I recommend you get the free Basecamp Personal plan, and if you like it, upgrade to the $99/month Basecamp Business plan.
(free 30-day trial)
What We Like
Great Free Plan
Basecamp’s free plan, called the “Personal”, accommodates up to 20 users.
It allows you to manage up to three projects simultaneously. You also get their message board, 1GB of free space to store files, group chats, and integrations with some third-party apps.
These are some pretty generous specs, which make the free plan actually usable.
For the right team, Basecamp can be very affordable with no per user fees.
For $99 per month, you’ll get unlimited users and unlimited projects.
Most of the alternative tools can get pretty pricey when you’re paying per user, and have a bigger team. If you had 20 users, Basecamp’s price would come at just under $5 per month, per user, which is a competitive price, when compared to most project management tools out there.
It kind of feels like Basecamp is a communication app first, and a task management software second.
With the automatic check-ins feature, you could potentially eliminate status meetings, once and for all. A project manager can set custom questions that require daily, weekly, or monthly answers.
People now can complete these check-in questions on their own time, instead of having yet another status meeting. I bet everyone will love this one.
What We Don’t Like
Lacks Some Basic Functionality
Basecamp lacks some pretty basic features, which are usually very important for project managers.
For example, if you want to view Gantt Charts, a Kanban board or even track project time, you’ll have to integrate Basecamp with other solutions, since these features aren’t natively available in the app.
Relying on a third-party for accessing such important functionality can get a little annoying and costly, if you need a lot of different functions.
When it comes to complex projects, the software doesn’t really support iterations in real-time.
There’s no way to connect tasks to subtasks to see the impact on the big-picture of a project, which can be a bummer for those bigger projects.
It Can Be Expensive For Small Teams
Basecamp’s only plan costs $99/month, which is great for big teams… but it can be a little harder to justify those costs for smaller teams.
For example, Monday.com only costs $30/month on the standard plan, for 3 users… and it’s a lot more powerful as a project management software.
Biased Value Comparison
Basecamp has an infographic where they compare their service with other providers:
While their pricing is interesting, their math doesn’t reeeeally add up.
For example, no one would pay for Asana just to get their to-do lists… and Asana is more complete than Basecamp, as a project management software.
With Google Drive, you get 2TB of file storage for less than $150 per year, and it’s not like Basecamp can offer email hosting, and all of the Google Drive apps.
All in all, it’s a marketing device they’re using, I get it… but I think the comparison isn’t really accurate.
Basecamp Reviews From Experts
I've always loved Basecamp and have used it for a variety of projects and for personal use as well. It's simple enough to wrap your head around but still has the features you need to get stuff done. It's by far my favorite project management and team communication tool out there.
Because the platform we used previously was so cumbersome and time-intensive to maintain, we used to have a person dedicated almost exclusively to managing the marketing production workflow for our three brands. Now I spend about an hour a month setting things up, and the process manages itself.
WP Site Care
For the first time in a long time our team is truly collaborating, and everyone is moving in the same direction, with the same goals. It's truly remarkable how quickly things have changed in just a week.
(30-day free trial)
Our Verdict — Best Free Alternative
ClickUp is simple, but under the hood it's got core capabilities for all your business processes: sales, marketing, development, and design.
Their free plan offers more features than the paid plans of other tools. On the free plan you get unlimited members, unlimited tasks, different project views, dashboards, real-time collaboration, time tracking, 24/7 support, integrations, 2-factor authentication, and much more.
Get it if you’re just starting out with project management and want a simple, affordable tool to put it into practice.
I recommend you get started on the Unlimited plan with unlimited storage and advanced features for $9/month.
(free 30-day trial)
What We Like
Full-Featured Free Plan
ClickUp’s free plan offers features that are normally only found in paid versions, especially with the fact you get unlimited members and unlimited tasks.
They offer different project views, dashboards, real-time collaboration, task dependencies, time tracking, 24/7 support, many integrations, 2-factor authentication, and more.
On top of that, ClickUp’s interface is a breeze to navigate. They constantly come out with new updates, and their support is top-notch.
The only “problem” is that they only offer 100MB of storage on the free plan… although, you can always use other solutions like Dropbox or Google Drive for that.
Everything In One Place
To-do lists, project management, wiki, time tracking, screen recording…
If jumping back and forth to execute your daily tasks gets you annoyed, ClickUp might be a great option for you.
If you’re constantly jumping from Slack to Trello, to spreadsheets, and project views… ClickUp will help you save time, and allow you to integrate all of the different aspects of your business under one big umbrella.
Great User Interface
You can set ClickUp to look just the way you want, and their user interface is quite enjoyable. It’s clear, intuitive, and easy to use.
Their dashboard view offers great visuals and information, with multiple views to choose from, which can give you quick insights.
I especially enjoy the Calendar view, as it helps make planning a lot easier, and more visual.
What We Don’t Like
Disappointing Mobile App
The mobile app has a few hiccups here and there, and it could use some improvements.
For example, you can only see the hourly view on the calendar. You can’t create graphs to analyze your stats, and you can only visualize stats for the tasks themselves.
I understand they’re developing their app, so it’s possible it will get a lot better soon. They recently fixed the landscape view, which was a major drawback.
It Can Get Overwhelming
Some users might feel overwhelmed by the sheer amount of features, especially when they’re just getting started with ClickUp.
The learning curve is a bit steep, and it gets hard to find and use all their features.
Also, arguably, there are too many options for customization. This can actually be a great thing, but it can also be a burden, especially for new users.
This is a small thing, which can get really annoying, really fast. Every time you add a new project, it goes all the way to the bottom of the list of projects.
I wish there was a simple way to sort projects, like alphabetically or per date, for example.
ClickUp Reviews From Experts
I've run a digital marketing and design agency for 7 years now. Clickup has everything I need in one place and is set up already with what I need to properly manage multiple projects and businesses at once. Everything is top notch and should be implemented into every small business struggling with project management.
ClickUp brought us all into one system to manage all of our projects as well as see the status of anything and everything. It's been a game-changer. Not only do we feel we’ve adopted an amazing tool to increase organizational visibility, but we feel we’ve gained an esteemed partner who is as committed to innovating in their space as Webflow.
(30-day free trial)
Our Verdict — Best For Freelancers
AND.CO helps one-man operations work more efficiently, and stop losing time with activities like creating and sending proposals, invoices, tracking expenses, and task management, to name a few.
Get it if you’re a freelancer or solopreneur who sells services, has a few clients, but struggles with organization.
If you need to have 2 or more users, go with Monday.com instead.
I recommend you get started on the Pro plan (with unlimited clients) for $24/month.
(30-day money back guarantee)
What We Like
Documents Flow Integration
Word Docs, Powerpoints and Excel files are kinda standalone, and each one lives in their own city.
AND.CO has created an incredible document flow integration, which helps you save time and avoid mistakes.
You could type up a proposal, then turn it into a contract, and eventually an invoice. That helps you avoid having wrong rates or a misspelled name on an invoice, for example.
With AND.CO you can automate invoices, either on a set time schedule or based on your specific milestones.
Not only will that make you look more professional, but it will also help you avoid having to hunt down clients because you forgot to invoice them.
The invoice reminder feature is a great tool, as well. If you haven’t sent a client an invoice within a set timeframe, AND.CO will remind you to do so.
AND.CO allows you to offer many different ways to get paid.
PayPal? Stripe? Credit cards? Direct deposit?
You’ve got it. Pretty much every payment method is available for you.
On top of that, you'll even get notified when your money has been deposited into your bank account, which eliminates the need to keep on checking your bank account to see if a payment has come through.
What We Don’t Like
“Malnourished” Free Plan
I don’t think AND.CO really wants us to use their free plan.
If you’re looking for a project management software, you probably already have a few clients under your wing.
If that’s the case, the free version won’t do, as you can only use it for a single client.
In my opinion, if you’ve only got one client… Do you really need such a monster of a software?
On top of that, every document you send to your clients, such as invoices or proposals, will have an AND.CO stamp on it.
That being said, it’s a good idea to get the free plan and try it out before you commit to buying.
If you’re looking for a better free option, go with ClickUp instead.
I Just Want My Own Templates!
AND.CO doesn’t allow you to really customize rates, products, and other stuff.
We could say, for example, that proposal creation is probably not AND.CO’s focus. Their proposals look, well… maybe a little too simple?
You pretty much have one template option, with pre-set blocks. You can edit the content of each block, but you can’t do much with how it all looks. You can’t even change fonts or tweak font sizes.
Then, the only way to reuse something is to duplicate or copy an entire document. This is a pretty standard feature in most proposal software options out there.
I reeeeeeeally wish they’d allow me to control what my proposals and other documents look like.
Can’t Add Team Members
With AND.CO, you don’t have “users”. You just have the one, single account access.
If you need someone to help you with your projects, you’ll need to trust them with your full access.
For solo freelancers who rely on virtual assistants to outsource some jobs, this could be a big issue.
AND.CO Reviews From Experts
The best expense tracking app! It's wonderful. One of the finest apps for tracking your expenses, creating invoices and proposals.
(30-day money back guarantee)
Our Verdict — Best For Product Teams
Planio is incredibly flexible for product and development teams. It can adapt to different types of projects, it’s highly configurable, and it allows you to manage your projects, your way.
Get it if your team can benefit from breaking big projects down to issues, and tracking their progress. This is particularly interesting for dev teams.
If you need something a little less complicated to set up, go with Monday.com instead.
I recommend you get started on the Silver plan, and then upgrade to the plan that suits your team size.
(free 30-day trial)
What We Like
Great For Dev Teams
Planio’s take on project management makes it almost fun to manage the craziness which is a team of developers working on too many projects at once.
What I like the most about Planio is how it allows you to take a “bite-size” project management style.
Planio does that by breaking big projects all the way down to “issues”, and tracking their progress. This focus on managing and fixing issues is perfect for the buggy world developers live in.
It’s Based On Redmine
Planio was built based on Redmine, which is an open source tool for project management and issue tracking.
It has some pretty cool features, such as associating subprojects to bigger projects, allowing for project-specific wikis and forums, time tracking, and more.
Since Redmine is open source, the end result is a stable and secure product.
Developers all around the globe come up with new functionality for Redmine every day, which Planio can easily use to beef up their new versions, once a new development has proven to be stable.
To top it off, they’ll import your Redmine data for free… and will even allow you to export your data, should you ever want to move to Redmine on your server.
Planio has 14 “mini-apps” you can turn on or off. This allows you to create a project management environment that suits your needs, every time.
Time tracking, wikis, blogs, forums, team chat… Once you figure out your workflow, you can add on the modules which will enable you to get your project going, just the way you want it.
What We Don’t Like
“Hidden” Free Plan
Their free Bronze plan is hidden at the bottom of their pricing table. This isn’t a big deal, since you can only have one single project, two users, 10 customers, and 1 GB of storage.
But a free plan is a nice way to get a feel of the software, without being obligated to make a decision if you want to “marry” it.
On the other hand, you can try any of their paid plans for 30 days, free of charge… so that kind of makes up for it, as they all offer a lot more than the free option.
Custom Plugins Only Available On The Enterprise Plan
Users on the Enterprise plan have access to custom plugins, enterprise application integrations, themes, and more.
It’s a shame, because other services such as Planio Help Desk or Planio Storage can be bought as an add-on on lower plans… but I really wish we could buy our access to their custom development, by paying extra.
Disproportional Plan Limits
Planio has lots of pricing options, but they’re a little stiff when it comes to raising your limits.
The “Silver” plan ($25/mo) only allows for 5 users, managing 3 projects. The “Platinum” plan ($199/mo) allows for 45 users managing 40 projects.
Big project teams could potentially need more project slots. That being said, they’re pretty flexible and will create a custom plan for your company. Just go to their “contact us” page, and they’ll take care of you.
Plan.io Reviews From Experts
Using Planio’s workflow component, we are incorporating standards and methodology into our projects and programs. This allows us to engage with our customers in a much more value based way and leave the administration to our tools.
Everything our team does is done in Planio. It’s our main workflow tool. At this stage, we’ve created tens of thousands of issues. We’re really happy with it.
(free 30-day trial)
Top 10 Project Management Software Questions
What Is Project Management Software?
Project management software is what companies use to break projects down into individual tasks, then manage them amongst a team. Teams can keep track of project completion dates, assign tasks to individual team members, and communicate and share files to get projects done on time.
What Is The Best Project Management Software?
The best project management software is Monday.com. They offer an amazing experience for users, and their Standard plan is the best bang for the buck in the entire market, starting at $30/month for up to 3 users.
What Is The Cheapest Project Management Software?
The cheapest project management software is ClickUp. For $5/month, each user gets unlimited projects and unlimited storage, plus some interesting features.
What Is The Best Free Project Management Software?
The best free project management software is ClickUp. ClickUp’s free plan offers features that are normally only found in paid versions, plus you get unlimited members, unlimited tasks and 100MB of storage.
How Do I Choose The Best Project Management Software?
The five most important factors you should consider when choosing the best project management software are:
- Easy To Use - you want the software to free up time, not to get in the way.
- Communication - making it easy to chat and share files on individual projects is essential, especially for global teams.
- Dashboards - high level views help everyone understand the status of the projects quickly.
- Price - how does the price compare to the benefits you get?
- Customization - can you create an environment that reflects your company’s needs and preferences?
What Is The Best Project Management Software For Small Business?
What Is The Most Commonly Used Project Management Software?
The most commonly used project management software is JIRA, used by organizations that work under the Agile SDLC principle.
Does Google Have Project Management Software?
No. Google has no software designed specifically for project management. You can use Google Sheets to manually create Gantt charts and timelines, but you’d save more time using ClickUp’s free plan, instead.
What Project Management Tool Does Amazon Use?
Amazon has no top-down officially mandated project management tool. Different Amazon teams use different project management tools. For example dev teams may use something like JIRA, while operations and marketing teams that are more short-project focused may use some type of Kanban tool like Monday.com.
What Project Management Tool Does Google Use?
Google has no top-down officially mandated project management tool. Different Google teams use different project management tools. For example dev teams may use something like JIRA, while operations and marketing teams that are more short-project focused may use some type of Kanban tool like Monday.com.
Top 50 Project Management Software We Considered
The Content Mavericks editorial team researched 391 different project management software based on customer reviews, expert reviews, ease of use, affordability, and features. We then chose a shorter list for in-depth research and testing before finalizing our top picks. These are the products we considered that ultimately didn't make our top 5.
12. Zoho Projects
27. Citrix Podio
41. Planview LeanKit
42. SAP PPM
47. Easy Projects