Top 10 Project Management Software for 2021 (free & paid)

Project management software help to simplify the workflow of large or complex operations, and they are helpful in nearly every industry.

These tools were once available to only large corporations who could afford them. But today, the rise of project management software-as-a-service is changing the industry.

Most packages are now affordable for small and medium-sized businesses, and some are even free. Still, they pack lots of impressive features that guarantee the smoothness and success of your projects.

From software development to construction, online and offline projects, so long as you need to collaborate with a team, the following tools can be of great help.

Top 10 Project Management Software

NameBest ForStoragePrice/userWebsite
MondayAutomationN/A$8/monthmonday.com
SmartsheetFlexibilityN/A$14/monthsmartsheet.com
TeamworkTeam management100MB-500GBFreemiumteamwork.com
Zoho ProjectsTotal package10MB/fileFreemiumzoho.com/projects
LiquidPlannerSmart features100GB$45/monthliquidplanner.com
BasecampCost savings1GB-500GBFree, $99/teambasecamp.com
TrelloKanban style10-250MB per fileFreemiumtrello.com
MicrosoftLarge projectsN/A$10/monthmicrosoft.com
TeamGanttGantt chartsN/AFreemiumteamgantt.com
ClickUpCustomization, free plan100MB-unlimitedFreemiumclickup.com

1. Monday.com

Monday.com

Monday.com is an enterprise-grade and complete solution for any team to manage all their projects in one place. It works equally well with basic and complex project portfolios.

It comes in four plans, which all have a minimum of 3 users. They start from the Basic plan for $8 per user per month. This plan offers unlimited boards for listing and managing your projects and over 200 templates that you can customize to fit your industry and specific needs.

There is also the Standard plan for $10 per month, with Gantt charts and timeline views. Plus automation of repetitive tasks and integration with other tools like Google Calendar.

With the Pro plan for $16 per user, however, private boards and time tracking come included. Plus the available automation and integrations per month are increased to 25,000.

Its final level is the Enterprise plan, with enterprise-scale automation, integrations, security, permission, and other custom features.

Pros: Wide range of features, extensive integration, automation

Cons: Starts from 3 user-plans

2. Smartsheet

Smartsheet

Smartsheet is a project management software in a class of its own. Trusted by over 90% of Fortune 100 companies and 75% of the Fortune 500, there should be no doubt about its quality and value.

As its name suggests, this system is based on worksheets like excel sheets. A Smartsheet, however, can contain any data like files, emails, charts, priorities, calendars, and so on. This feature makes Smartsheet very flexible and powerful.

The individual plan offers one dashboard and lets you create up to 10 sheets and 5 reports. It costs $14 per month and includes automation, notification, templates, and forms.

Higher plans like the Business plan include 100 sheets and unlimited reports per user, more features like activity log and progress tracking, plus so much more.

Pros: Simple & innovative, extensible, automation

Cons: You can get cheaper offers

3. Teamwork

Teamwork

If you are an agency or have a distributed team that you need to keep in sync, then the Teamwork project management package might be for you.

Designed to efficiently manage different users, Teamwork lets you collaborate on a project in many ways, including milestones, tasks, sub-tasks, portfolios, and different data views.

Then, it also lets you set permissions, so you have different access levels, including clients. You can manage lots of client projects, including their billing, scale and expand your operations, and boost profits.

The Teamwork platform is also great for distributed teams of all types and it integrates well with the Teamwork CRM, chat, and other apps. Their offers also come with a free plan and this includes 5 users, 2 projects, and 100 MB of storage.

Pros: Free plan, agency support, integrations

Cons: There are simpler solutions

4. Zoho Projects

Zoho Projects

Zoho Projects comes with all the features you can expect from a project management software service.

It includes issue management to solve problems, task management to break down work into smaller parts, time management to stay on top of the schedule, plus cost management, reporting, collaboration, and resources.

You also get automation, user administration, and integration modules. Plus, each of the modules further breaks down to give you more choice and control.

Zoho projects’ features are exhaustive, but these features increase from the free plan with its 2 projects and 3 users limit to the Premium and Enterprise plans with unlimited projects and users.

Pros: Exhaustive functions, free plan, integration

Cons: The trial is only 10 days

5. LiquidPlanner

LiquidPlanner

Every project involves risks and uncertainties that are sometimes hard to compute. So LiquidPlanner does exactly what its name says: It helps you plan and manage your projects flexibly.

All you need is a project’s priority, a range of estimates, and availability. Then LiquidPlanner does the rest. It will change your completion dates, whenever there is a change in resources or a shift in priorities.

LiquidPlanner’s goal is to adapt your project schedules to always reflect the reality on the ground and to do it automatically, which it does well. This helps you to focus on your core duties.

There is a Professional plan for $45 per user per month, a costlier Enterprise plan, and a 14-day free trial. But while Liquid Planner sounds relatively expensive, remember that it does its job well.

Pros: Automation, forecasting, risk management, large storage

Cons: Relatively expensive

6. Basecamp

Basecamp

Most other offers on this list set their plans at per user per month costs. Basecamp, on the other hand, offers its Business plan for a $99 flat fee for the entire team, and with no limits whatsoever.

There is also the Basecamp personal, a 100% free plan for up to 20 users, 3 projects, and a 1GB storage.

However, the Business plan includes separate team projects, unlimited client accounts, project templates, schedules, and to-do lists.

The package also includes 500GB storage, chats, project customizations with tweets, videos, public links, and so much more.

Pros: Team cost savings, free plan

Cons: Less automation

7. Trello

Trello

The Trello package is as much a project management application, as it is a productivity platform. It employs Kanban-style boards to create a simple and easy-to-manage system.

In a kanban system, cards are listed from left to right and may range from “in progress” to “testing” on its right, and “done” even further to the right.

There is a free plan with 10 boards, which can each hold unlimited kanban-style cards or lists. Trello has no limit on the number of users here, but the next plan costs $9.99 per month and comes with much more features.

Pros: Kanban-style cards, simple and efficient system

Cons: A bit unconventional

8. Microsoft Project

Microsoft Project

Yes, Microsoft Corporation also makes project management software. And just like its humongous maker, Microsoft Project is also best suited for larger companies.

Microsoft Project is probably the oldest name on this list, as it has been around since the days of MS-DOS in the 1980s. Its latest version is the Project 2019, which is only available for Windows 10 as a one-time purchase.

Web versions are also available, starting with the $10 per month plan with limited features, and increasing to more feature-filled plans.

Keep in mind, however, that Microsoft Project is more suited to a project manager, someone that has to learn its many functions first.

Pros: Powerful desktop software, designed for professionals

Cons: High learning curve

9. TeamGantt

TeamGantt

Gantt charts are probably the most popular form of data visualization when it comes to project management and TeamGantt offers you the best way to use them.

This online project planning service makes things easy with its drag-and-drop interface, storage of all project data in one spot, resource management, remote-work friendliness, reports, and time-tracking.

It will even handle multiple projects on one chart, settle project dependencies, compare planned and actual progress, produce beautiful exports, and so much more.

TeamGantt is so simple but very powerful as well, as it has customers such as Amazon, Disney, Nike, and so on.

Pros: Very simple and easy to use

Cons: Less automation

10. ClickUp

ClickUp

ClickUp offers a fresh approach to project management with its flexible customization options and multiple views to give you exactly what you need.

You can use a kanban-style board view, a list view, a box view for high-level overviews, a calendar view for precise scheduling, and Me Mode for privacy.

ClickUp also comes with all the other standard features you can expect from a project management software package, including document integration, Gantt charts, web forms, checklists, time-tracking, and so on.

You also get ready-made templates for easy starts and customization. Plus, there is a free plan with 100-MB storage, while the Unlimited plan costs just $5 per user per month, but includes unlimited features.

Pros: Customizations, free plan, extensive integration, multiple views

Cons: Not ideal for agencies

Conclusion

We have reached the end of this top 10 project management software list, taking a look at some of the best offers out there and their unique features.

Nnamdi Okeke

Nnamdi Okeke is a computer enthusiast who loves to read a wide range of books. He has a preference for Linux over Windows/Mac and has been using Ubuntu since its early days. You can catch him on twitter via @bongotrax

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