Project management is a huge headache, but it’s also unavoidable,
being a key component of running any type of business you care to mention. Without projects, internal or external, you’re left in a perpetual state of winging it — and with projects that are unmanaged or poorly managed, you’re only marginally better off.
This means you need to maintain a tight grip over every aspect of each project you undertake. From the very first brief to the final sign-off, you need everything catalogued, distributed and archived accordingly. This can be done completely manually, but it’s far more work than anyone should consider taking on that way. That’s where project management tools come in.
Project management tools help you keep track of what your goals are, where resources are going, how deliverables are coming along, and how distinct teams are cooperating and collaborating. To help you keep your approach moving with the times, here are 5 such tools that you might not have tried yet:
If you’re looking for a broad project management suite, you’ll find no shortage of viable options out there. Systems like Asana and Trello are enduringly popular, and new contenders pop up on a regular basis. Wrike is a choice that has steadily crept up in perceived viability, and stands (in its current iteration) as an exceptional option that’s certainly worth a look if you’re unfamiliar.
What makes it so useful? Well, it has reasonable pricing ($24.80 per user per month at the business tier) and provides exceptional functionality. The cloud-based interface is crisp, clean, and clear, and the onus is on comprehensive usability. It isn’t the slickest program out there, and it will likely be seen as a little complex at first, but the learning curve is worth it.
Created for agile working, MeisterTask is a simpler and more colorful solution than Wrike. Its layout flexibly rearranges to suit your needs, no matter what specifically you’re trying to achieve, and if you don’t need fancy integrations, you can use it for free — indefinitely. That certainly makes it something worth considering.
If you do want those integrations, the pro tier is very affordable, so it’s unquestionably a justifiable expense. With so many project management tools offering comparable functionality, it really comes down to personal preference. What menu style do you prefer? What layout format? Experiment with new tools when you can, and you might just find a better fit.
Weekdone is all about specific objectives: for the week, for the month, for one person, for an entire team… if you’re determined to achieve particular things before particular dates, this type of intuitive format might be perfect for you. The challenge innate to more complex tools can cause headaches, but Weekdone is incredibly straightforward.
The pricing is similarly simple, scaling up the more users you need. Having 100 premium users (complete with onboarding and training in the event that you need it) will cost just $6 per person per month. There are also Android and iOS apps that offer at-a-glance graphics showing project progress — perfect for busy managers that need oversight to be optimally simple.
You’ve inevitably heard of Slack — it’s one of the most widely-used business communication tools in the world, after all — but it isn’t the only program of its kind. Fleep was built along similar lines, but it goes about things in a slightly different way. You can think of it as a cross-platform hybrid: instead of limiting chat to specific channels, it brings together live chat and email into an interface that allows people in your operation to communicate live regarding specific emails.
It’s also open to the extent that no one needs a Fleep invitation to participate in an exchange if invited. You can simply email them about it and make them a part of the live exchange. And with the free version allowing file sharing, message history storage, and unlimited conversations, it’s a highly affordable choice.
This might seem like an odd choice for this list, but allow me to explain its inclusion. Zapier isn’t innately a project management tool, but given that it can add so much to project management, it absolutely warrants a place on this list. Zapier is an integration tool that allows you to connect apps of all types and purposes, allowing you to get your broader operation running smoothly.
Consider this: Zapier supports integrations with every other tool I’ve listed here, and can easily get them hooked up to CRM systems like Zendesk or ecommerce platforms like Shopify Plus or WooCommerce. Integrations via Zapier frees your team from getting bogged down with admin and other repetitive labor-intensive tasks so that they can dedicate more of their time and effort on the tasks that mean more to your business’s bottom line.
Project management can always become more efficient, and this is reflected in the ever-developing software scene. Whether you’ve just dipped your toes in the ocean of digitally-enhanced project management, or you’ve been using solutions like Trello for quite some time, there’s always room to try new tools. Why not give these a shot?