Today, making use of technological tools has become a necessity rather than a choice. Over the past decade, the trend of using project management software has grown substantially.
Most organizations, be it small or big, are making use of project management tools to bring efficiency to their work.
Whether you are working individually or with a small team who has just finished setting up a business, chances are that you feel reluctant to invest your money in a project management software.
However, you will be more than happy to know that there are several free project management software that you can use.
Most free project management software offers basic features that are sufficient to manage small teams and a couple of projects in a cost-effective way.
In this article, I have assembled 10 best free project management software that you can use to streamline work and improve your productivity. But before we move into that aspect, we need to first of all build a thorough understanding of what project management is?
Project Management in a Nutshell
To put simply, project management deals with all the planning, organizing, execution, required to deliver projects. The main objective of using project management is to finish projects on time using the limited amount of allocated resources.
An individual who is responsible for implementing project management in an organization is known as a project manager. It is their responsibility to manage the risk, time, budget, and tasks associated with projects.
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10 Free Project Management Software To Start Using Right Away
Now that we have established an understanding of project management, it’s time to take a look at the top-rated project management software that you can use for free:
ProofHub is among the best online project management software that you can use to plan, organize, and deliver all your projects. The software comes with several robust collaboration tools that will help you make sure that all the members of your team are on the same page.Developed with the vision to make project management a trouble-free process, ProofHub has all the essential tools that you need as a project manager. The intuitive interface of this project management software allows you to become familiar with its functionality without any struggle or spending too much time on it. One of the most remarkable things about ProofHub is that teams of any size, any industry, any department can use it. ProofHub allows you to enjoy all the major benefits of using a project management software.
This project management software comes with a plethora of features that can help you as well as other people in your organization to boost productivity and stay on top of their work. Below are some of the key features of ProofHub that are worth your attention:
- Online Proofing of Files
Easily review designs and documents online and add comments as feedback using this powerful tool. You can reply to comments within a thread and mark suggestions as resolved once done with all the changes. One-click approval option makes it super easy for collaborators to approve files instantaneously.
Create custom roles and assign them to the people on your team. You can grant different access levels to each role to have complete authority of deciding who gets access to what within a project.
Get everything you need to manage your tasks in the best possible way in a single place. Create tasks for a project, select assignees, set time estimates, and add labels to prioritize tasks. Use Kanban boards to define the stages of a project, drag and drop tasks across stages, and see tasks moving across different stages in real-time while creating a custom workflow for your team.
Gantt charts feature allows you to get a timeline view of your projects and set dependencies among tasks. They also let you identify critical paths in projects and even make adjustments to project schedules as the deadlines shift.
Analyze the roadmap of project milestones to see both the pending and completed milestones of a project. Know how each person on your team is performing using the resource reports. Select parameters of your choice to customize reports and see the difference between the planned and the actual project progress.
- Group Chat
Communicate with your colleagues using the instant messaging feature. Send direct messages or create groups to bring multiple people into a conversation. Share files, mention people in a chat to grab their attention, and use emojis to make messages brief and meaningful.
Track time for each task, project, team member, and access the recorded time data anytime using timesheets. Use in-built timers to track time automatically or add time manually for a task. You can also use the timesheets for client invoicing, estimation, and better time management.
Add request forms for support queries, tickets, product requests, etc. Add labels to requests to differentiate and manage them easily. You can also customize request forms and add fields to get the relevant information required to start processing a request.
- Multiple view modes – List view, Kanban board view, Gantt chart view, and Calendar view
- Offers cloud storage to store, organize, and share project files
- Real-time in-app, desktop, email, and mobile notifications
- The constant development of new features
- Excellent customer support
- Limited app integrations
What you get in the free version of ProofHub
ProofHub is completely free for schools all around the globe for the rest of 2020. The free version offers all the features along with an unlimited number of projects and users.
Cost to upgrade
The Essential plan starts at $45/month and offers all the core features. The Ultimate Control plan starts from $89/month (limited time offer) and comes with unlimited users and all the advanced features.
User Reviews for ProofHub:
“ProofHub made everything easier, smarter, and faster, without breaking the bank. Thanks to ProofHub, 1. We’ve better control of our projects, tasks, and communications. 2. We work together better. 3. We’ve been saving tons of time. 4. We’ve eliminated all the fuzziness from our work process. 5. We’ve been identifying and knocking problems out faster. 6. We achieve better work satisfaction. 7. We’ve been able to bring down our project delivery time. And… we’re 10x more productive.” – Capterra
“Whether you’re a project manager at a startup or a member of a business team in a large organization, ProofHub makes job easier, and that too at an affordable expense. It is one of the best, feature-packed work management, task management, and team collaboration systems available in the market today.” – G2
Teamwork is a project management tool that you can use to customize your workflow and get better results from team efforts. It allows you to deliver projects on time and within budget. The project management tool centralizes all the project information to give you a complete representation of your project’s scope.
- Kanban board and Gantt charts are available
- Time tracking to monitor where the team is spending their time
- View workload on each team member and manage resources more efficiently
- UI is not appealing
- Steep learning curve
What you get in the free version of Teamwork
The free version of Teamwork allows you to manage 2 projects and add 5 team members. Also, you can create subtasks and use the limited board view to organize project tasks. Teamwork chat instant messenger is also available with the free plan.
Cost to upgrade
The Pro plan starts at $9 per user per month and the Premium plan starts at $15 per user per month with both plans requiring a minimum of 5 users.
User Reviews for Teamwork
“The initial setup and learning curve can be a little steep. The other thing that can quickly be a problem is the amount of space you have available. If you are uploading a number of files for each project that space quickly fills up. It is minor but an extra thing you have to manage.” – Software Advice
With MeisterTask, you can organize and manage all your projects and tasks in a customizable environment. It comes with Kanban boards that you can use to streamline workflow and enhance your team’s productivity. The project management software brings all the tasks and their information down to a single place.
- User-friendly interface
- Create multiple checklists and break into smaller sub-lists
- Integration with third-party apps
- No integrated calendar
- The reporting feature is not up to the mark
What you get in the free version of MeisterTask
The free version of Meister tasks allows you to manage a maximum of 3 projects, add unlimited tasks, and attach files of size up to 20MB. Moreover, email support and time tracking are also available.
Cost to upgrade
The Pro plan costs $4.19 per user per month and the Business plan costs $10.39 per user per month.
User Reviews for MeisterTask
“Better organization of time and resources. More control over projects and tasks.” – Capterra
Airtable combines spreadsheets and databases to simplify task management for teams. You can view all your tasks on a grid, Kanban board, calendar, or gallery. Airtable has a creative palette of app-like functionality, which you can use to create a perfect workflow for your team.
- Bar, line and scatter charts
- Gantt charts provide the timeline view of projects
- Offers several project templates for users to get a headstart
- Difficult to learn and figure out how it works
- Misses out several spreadsheet functions
What you get in the free version of Airtable
The free version offers unlimited bases, and 1200 records per base. With each base, users get 2GB attachment space. Realtime collaboration and commenting are also enabled in the free plan.
Cost to upgrade
The Plus plan starts at $10 per user per month and the Pro plan starts at $20 per user per month.
User Reviews for Airtable
“I don’t like the failure to link words between databases. I believe it is a great plan to maintain a large amount of info in a single spot and also relate it to various other files to ensure that it may be delivered to various other databases as needed. Furthermore, there’s not much freedom in the integration of Internet navigation.” – G2
Also Read: The Best Airtable Alternatives
nTask is another dominant project management system software that you can use to get work done better and faster. The tool has several practical features, including Gantt charts, Kanban boards, to-do lists, etc. that gives you an upper hand while managing projects as well as teams.
- Attach files and add comments to tasks
- Automated task timer
- Assign team roles and permissions
- Extensive app integrations
- Limited customization options
What you get in the free version of nTask
The free version of nTask offers 100 MB of storage, unlimited workspaces, unlimited tasks, 5 members per team, and timesheets.
Cost to upgrade
The Premium plan starts at $2.99 per user per month and the Business plan starts at $7.99 per user per month.
User Reviews for nTask
“The only thing that isn’t as user-friendly about nTask is the ability to attach documents and photos. It’d be great to be able to see the visuals right in the project window, but this isn’t an available feature at the moment. Other than that, it works great for a small team!” – Capterra
Trello is another popular project management software, which is known for its Kanban board approach for managing tasks. You can easily organize and prioritize all your projects and tasks using Trello’s boards, lists, and cards. Each board represents a project, while a card represents a task.
- The user interface is simple and straightforward
- Customizable dashboard
- A long list of app integrations
- Limited email integration
- Limited in-built features
What you get in the free version of Trello
The free version of Trello offers unlimited boards, cards, and lists along with 10 team boards. The maximum size of a File attachment is restricted to 10 MB.
Cost to upgrade
The Business Class plan starts at $9.99 per user per month and the Enterprise plan starts at $20.83 per user per month.
User Reviews for Trello
“Nothing I really didn’t like about Trello… Maybe be one thing could be improved : it is the history of the actions done on the task and tiles. At the moment, the history is too loaded and sometimes it is not easy to find the most important actions done.” – Capterra
Also Read: 17 Best Trello Alternatives in 2020
Wrike has been around for quite a while now, and is a highly popular project management tool. You can collaborate, communicate, and organize everything that your team needs to complete projects with Wrike project management software. Customize dashboards to view projects the way you want them to be. Use interactive Gantt charts to set task dependencies and avoid project delays.
- View project progress in real-time
- In-built proofing tool
- View tasks in the list, board, and table view
- Not good for handling complex projects
- The user interface can be better
What you get in the free version of Wrike
The free version of Wrike comes with the board view, spreadsheet view, and supports basic app integrations. Other available features include task management, real-time Activity Stream, and 2 GB of storage space.
Cost to upgrade
The Professional plan costs $9.80 per user per month (5-15 users) and the Business plan costs $24.80 per user per month (5-200 users).
User Reviews for Wrike
“There is a learning curve to using the program – especially to figure out the best way to view to-do lists. We are finding that customized dashboard are much better but they could still use some development work.” – Software Advice
Paymo is another project management software if you need to manage simple projects using Kanban boards. The software is ideal for single users along with small and medium businesses. It has several tools that you can use to manage all the tasks of a project along with the team working on that project.
- Schedule and monitor tasks in real-time using Gantt charts
- Add comments to tasks
- Automatic time tracking and multiple timesheet views
- Create custom project reports
- The user interface is a bit complex
- Managing projects become difficult with the increase in the number of projects
What you get in the free version of Paymo
Paymo’s free plan supports only a single user. The user can add unlimited tasks, use the time tracking feature, and get 1 GB of storage space.
Cost to upgrade
The Small Office plan starts at $8.95 per user per month and the Business plan starts at $14.25 per user per month.
User Reviews for Paymo
“Tracking a large number of projects at one time can get quite confusing, you can label and categorise them but when working with tens’ of small(ish) projects the user interface get’s rather busy. The ability to import previous projects / calendars would be excellent, currently these have to be manually entered in.” – Capterra
ClickUp is a cloud-based project management tool suitable for a wide variety of teams. The software allows you to set goals for your team, create tasks, and assign tasks to team members. With ClickUp, you can see tasks in different views including, list view, Gantt chart view, and Calendar view.
- Task checklists remind what to do next
- 2-way tasks sync with Google Calendar
- Native time tracking
- The learning curve is a bit steep
- The reporting feature is flexible enough
What you get in the free version of ClickUp
The free plan offers 100 MB of storage space, unlimited tasks, and unlimited users.
Cost to upgrade
The Unlimited plan starts at $5 per user per month and the Business plan starts at $9 per user per month.
User Reviews for ClickUp
“It is still new software compared to other project management tools on the market, so some features are missing or not so smooth, but clickup is constantly developing and improving the user interface and adds useful features.” – Software Advice
Toggle Plan is a project management and time tracking software ideal for planning projects with ease and keeping teams on track. The software comes with Team View that allows you to get information like who’s working on what, who is overbooked, etc. all at a single place. You can also easily share your plans, tasks, and timeline with your team.
- Create and assign tasks and set milestones
- Add checklists and memos
- Board view with drag and drop interface
- Adding projects and clients is a little complex
- Limited app integrations
What you get in the free version of Toggle Plan
The free plan supports unlimited projects and 5 users.
Cost to upgrade
The Standard plan starts at $8 per user per month.
User Reviews for Toggl Plan
“Sometimes I have to refresh my screen for changes on the board to show up on the timeline, but that’s not a deal breaker. Also, I wish I could set recurring tasks.” – GetApp
Which one is the best free project management software?
Although the list can be quite exhaustive, we can say that ProofHub is currently the best free project management software out there. Since it allows project managers, team members, and even self-employed individuals to manage their work efficiently, and stay in ultimate control of everything, it is a must have tool for a team of any size. Besides, the user reviews also suggest the same.
Looking for the best free project management software to start planning, organizing, and collaborating on projects? Switch to ProofHub today!
The free project management software that I have mentioned in this article are all good in their own right. The free versions can work great, if you are a freelancer or run a small team, or just looking to give it a try to see how it works for your team. However, if you are working on several projects and managing multiple teams, it’s better to go with a paid plan to make the best out of a project management software.
So, browse, explore and pick the one that fits your and your team’s needs.
All the best!!!