Best Project Management Software for Small Businesses

by Sean Ross

2 min read

Project management software is an instrumental part of modern business planning. The right software can help you cut costs, generate more revenue, and improve collaboration — even if you’re working on a tight budget.

Best Free Software to Consider

The past several years have seen a proliferation of free and open-source project management software. The excellent news about these options is that they don’t cost anything — although some limit free versions to only very small companies. The downside is that they tend to be less comprehensive and limited in their data storage abilities.

  • Trello: One of the better known project management systems, Trello is fantastic for those who like a visual display for their projects. Users can represent tasks using cards that display next to each other, making it easy to see who is doing what. The free version of Trello only allows 10 MB of storage. The only other downside is that Trello is not suited for high-detail, complex projects.

  • Asana: Tens of thousands of companies rely on Asana to manage projects. Designed by Facebook co-founder Dustin Moskovitz, Asana is attractive and simple to use, and comes with tons of features. It has an associated Android app and allows up to 15 free users. The only real downside is a lack of offline functionality.

  • GanttProject: An open-source free scheduler and project management tool, Gantt offers an avalanche of features and project structures. It isn’t the prettiest system and is not very intuitive, so newbies to the project management scene should probably steer clear.

  • Orange Scrum: Another complex, customizable, and free software option. Orange Scrum was designed with IT teams in mind and creates for them a wide range of options. However, note that the free version requires local hosting, and users should have at least basic coding knowledge to fully use this software.

  • Freedcamp: In terms of benefits, design, and storage, Freedcamp is as good or better than the other free systems. There are no restrictions on the number of allowable users or projects, and administrators have a lot of control over access to features. Users have the option of paying for extra storage, add-ons, or CRM features as add-ons.

Best Paid Software

The most comprehensive project management tools are not free. Not every business needs an expensive, multi-departmental project management suite, but many businesses do need more than free offerings like Trello or Freedcamp. This is where the following software solutions come in handy:

  • Trello: Just like the free version of Trello, the Gold level has 25 times as much storage. At $5 per month, there isn’t really any reason not to go for this version.

  • Orange Scrum: The cloud-version of Orange Scrum. Prices begin at $9 per month.

  • Mavenlink: Mavenlink works very well with Google Apps, making it very attractive for small teams that are used to relying on Google’s fleet of dynamic tools to manage workflow. Starts at $29 per month.

  • Smartsheet: Smartsheet is a cutting edge, cloud-based solution that is well designed for projects that need to emphasize collaboration. It is $15 per month for teams or $25 per month for businesses.

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