“A small business can be challenging to run, regardless of its size. These are our picks of the best project management software for small businesses.”
Team performance is directly affected by the right productivity tools. Despite this, smaller or newer teams may find the cost of a project management software subscription prohibitive.
An organisation may wish to try out a new tool for several months before committing to purchase it. Free project management software for teams can boost productivity regardless of the organisation’s circumstances.
Now, you can manage your workflow more effectively with free project management software.
How do we know?
Seeing your progress over time allows you to keep track of things you have completed and the time you have spent on them to compare your performance.
Most of the challenges of managing virtual teams are eliminated when you use project management software correctly.
You will need some software to keep up with the operations of the small business and for that, you need software. You may fall behind if you fail to use the project management tools for your employees.
Here are our top 7 business project management software recommendations to help you choose the right program.
7 Free Project Management Tools For Small Businesses
Trello is a scalable platform that can be used to manage personal to-do lists and enterprise workflows.
Teams and individuals seeking more efficiency can use the free online tool. There is no cap on the number of members, unlimited cards, unlimited storage (with a 10 MB file size limit per file), or complete history of activities with the free plan.
Features of Trello
- Invite only readers to the board.
- You can use pre-made templates for boards.
- Manage board collections more effectively.
- Set permissions on boards, tasks, and attachments with the organisation-wide board and task permissions.
Moreover, you can create multiple boards per workspace, use a free Power-Up integration, assignees, and due dates, create automation, create mobile applications, and use two-factor authentication.
As a task management system, this simple, board-based platform gained popularity. As a result, it proved ideal for small businesses. Because Trello is so easy to use, it is an excellent tool for small groups.
Advantages of using Trello
- Trello can be used by anyone who has basic computer skills.
- The program is available for both desktop and mobile platforms.
- Visual monitoring of your projects is made easy by the program’s interface.
- Trello makes it easy to monitor progress, assign tasks, and set deadlines.
- The project can be shared with other team members for collaboration.
Pricing plan for Trello
Trello is trusted by millions of teams worldwide, so small businesses can figure out the suited plans for their enterprise.
Before committing to any paid plan, the small business can explore the unlimited free plan with 10 boards per workspace with unlimited storage and unlimited activity log.
Based on your requirement, you can escalate the standard plan for $5 USD, the premium plan for $10 USD, and the enterprise plan for $17.50 (this amount gets reduced based on the users).
Asana ranks next in our list of the top small business project tools. This tool is quite versatile and collaborative for small enterprises.
The software is free to use for a maximum of 15 users. The free plan has no limit on tasks, projects, messages, and attachments in the free plan, but there is a 100MB limit on storage.
Features of Asana
- Ensure that team workloads are managed.
- Organise and track executive objectives and project portfolios.
- Prepare request forms and share them with others.
- Coordinate approvals and proofreading.
- Establish customised dashboards for projects.
Project management software like Asana can be helpful to engineers tracking bugs, marketing and sales departments managing customer accounts, or HR departments onboarding new employees.
Different work views, assignees, due dates, project overviews, briefs, and apps integrate with time tracking. Apps for iOS and Android are available for free download on Asana’s website.
Advantages of using Asana
- Tasks can be created, edited, and tracked easily.
- The deadline field ensures that deadlines are met.
- It is possible to share tasks with other team members.
- Team members or collaborators can get easily assigned.
- The comments field allows you to clarify those tasks.
- A progress view is available for every task.
Pricing plan for Asana
You can only have up to 15 users on Asana’s free plan, omitting calendar and task views. A business plan is required for workload management, costing $30.49 per user per month.
Prices start at $13.49 per month for each additional user. The upgraded version has dashboards, timelines, request forms, and milestones.
#3. Jira Software
Jira offers products and deployment options tailor-made for teams related to software development, IT, business, operations, etc.
Jira combines multiple solutions that enable collaboration between all stakeholders as a work management system.
In addition to reporting, the platform offers an array of (agile) tools to track bugs, view outstanding issues, and estimate time spent per task in real time.
Features of Jira
- Smooth integration of Scrum boards and Kanban boards.
- In Jira, you can filter and sort issues using JQL, Jira’s customised query language.
- The tool support remote teams from diverse location.
- Both mobile and desktop version apps are available.
- Offers project insights and statistics of the project lifecycle.
- Jira is a project management tool with unparalleled integration with the available add-ons.
- You receive notifications in real time.
- Jira is the most popular among the teams. It is more valued for its customisable scrum boards and makes it possible to work with the Kanban method.
Advantages of Jira
- It’s a workflow-based tool with well-designed and flexible workflows.
- One tool to manage all steps of the testing and development process.
- Transparent and user-friendly interface with the deeply integrated tool.
- Integrates the workflow processes more effectively.
Pricing plan for Jira
The plan is free for three agents to track work more effectively. The free feature allows 100 emails per day with a service portal, SLA management, app integrations and IT templates.
If the collaboration increases, the standard charges per agent are $20 USD, premium charges stand around $45 USD, while the enterprise plan will be billed annually.
Zoho Projects’ free plan allows three users to use it, and there are no limitations on how many projects you can create.
Users can sample what the software can do with the free version and then upgrade to an affordable plan starting at $5 per person per month for unlimited projects.
Users can track progress, collaborate in teams, and manage their work.
The application allows users to track tasks, view Gantt charts, and download mobile apps. Each attachment can be no larger than 10MB in size.
Features of Zoho
- The user interface is intuitive and has a Gantt chart;
- Manages tasks and time;
- Allows for email collaboration;
- Includes hourly tasks and subtasks;
- A project wiki (on the intranet);
- A document management system;
- A bug tracker software;
- Scheduling and meetings for projects.
Zoho Projects integrates with Zoho apps and third-party applications, including Microsoft Teams, Zapier, Zendesk, Google Drive, ServiceNow and Microsoft Office 365.
Advantages of Zoho
- Offers budget management in real-time, preventing project costs from skyrocketing.
- Allows small businesses to have remote meetings on the same platform.
- Foster transparency and activity progress with reports and actions.
- Allows cloud-based storage to the users with the practical option of feedback and changes.
- Mitigate the risk of the project by setting in high and low priorities.
- Increases business productivity by optimising the work process.
- Streamlines project plans and schedules.
- Allows channelising the resources with technological aid.
- Monitors timeline with project progress.
Pricing plan for Zoho
Signing up for Zoho is free. With the Free plan, you get a single project and 10 megabytes of storage for up to three users. In addition to free and premium plans, the platform also offers Enterprise plans ($30 USD/user/month billed annually, unlimited users). Free trials are available for ten days.
If your business progresses, you can take up the standard plan ($10 USD/user/month, three users) and professional plan ($20 USD/user/month, five users).
#5. Click up
It’s hard to find tools that simultaneously manage business processes and development, sales, and marketing, but ClickUp is the perfect hybrid tool.
You can assign tasks with different dependencies, customise your workflow, and view results in ClickUp. Several views include a list view, a board view, a box view, and a calendar view.
ClickUp is one more cloud-based tool for Agile project management. With this platform, it’s easy to organise your sprints and resources, set goals, make the whole team collaborate seamlessly and monitor the workload of every member.
Features of Click up
- Create resources you can work on without leaving ClickUp – such as Conversations, Docs, and even Mind Maps.
- Make a custom view, customise it, and share it with anyone.
- Knows precisely what everyone is working on in real-time and prioritises what you and your team should focus on next.
ClickUp is a tool to help you create rich-text marketing documents that can be used for marketing plans, reports, and strategies.
They can be stored together in ClickUp and even attached to tasks. The document can also be edited and collaborated on in real-time with team members, like Google Docs.
Advantages of Click Up
- The project management tool allows at least 15 views (list, board, calendar, box, Gantt, activity view & more) of the projects.
- Has customisation features empowering proper workflow.
- Best after-sales service from the ClickUp team.
- Suitable for every business and team.
Pricing plan for ClickUp
The Unlimited plan grants unlimited views for lists, boards, and calendars and unlimited dashboards, guests, and permissions for $5/user/month.
The free version provides 100 MB of storage, unlimited members, and video recording capabilities. The interface also offers Gantt charts, mind maps, dashboards, and timeline views.
Furthermore, it offers a business plan ($12 per user/month), a Business Plus plan ($19 per user/month), and an Enterprise plan ($39 per user/month).
Basecamp may be the best choice for a simple task manager that lets your team members communicate in real time.
Basecamp is a perfect tool to help you manage projects and collaborate with your team.
Multiple collaboration features are available, including a discussion area and email updates. You can also search for files or conversations with a powerful search tool.
Customers can arrange contacts, assign tasks, and keep track of workflow with Basecamp.
You cannot customise or schedule milestones, however. Additionally, one task can’t be assigned to more than one user.
Features of Basecamp
- Make sure you know when important deadlines are coming up using the Schedules feature.
- You can integrate it with other applications as well.
- Identify the progress of a project using Hill charts.
Basecamp is at its best when it comes to simple team collaboration. Teams can communicate easily and collaborate effectively with bulletin boards, team messaging and shared files.
Advantages of Basecamp
- Basecamp’s reputation rests on its simplicity (easy to use and learn)
- Users can create client-specific projects depending on the number of users.
- Has inbuilt communication features for unified communication.
- Favourable customer support with suited pricing.
- Cross-device functionality and integration service.
- Provide backup for every project-related shared document.
Checking in is also automated in Basecamp. Consequently, managers will know their workers’ status without asking. Each project in Basecamp has a team of users, tasks, and files. You cannot create custom workflows for tasks in Basecamp.
You either have a task as done or as a to-do. Whether assigned to one person or more, tasks have due dates.
Pricing plan for Basecamp
The free version of Basecamp allows you to manage up to three projects, 20 users, and 1 GB of storage. An unlimited number of users is available in the Business plan for $99 per month. Trials are available for 30 days, and they can be extended if needed. Both teachers and students can use it at no charge.
You may want to consider Paymo if you need a small business invoicing app and a project tool. It features task management, time tracking, and invoicing capabilities.
Gantt charts are available with Paymo for scheduling work. There is a task dependency feature with Paymo. Critical Path analysis allows you to identify bottlenecks in your schedule.
Chat messages can be used for communication between team members. Each task can also be attached with files.
Payments can also be handled easily with Paymo. Clients can receive invoices directly from your Paymo account.
Features of Paymo
- Time spent on tasks can get tracked both for billing and non-billing.
- Workloads can be tracked and balanced within teams.
- Integrates with third-party apps such as Zapier, Google Apps, and more.
- Schedule employees based on their availability.
Pricing plan for Paymo
Freelancers can manage their time and tasks with Paymo’s time tracking & task management.
Each user pays $18.95 a month. The small office plan adds project planning, leave management, and workload management.
The price of Paymo per employee per month is $11.95 for Small Offices. You have access to invoicing functions, task management, and time-tracking features with this plan.
Which project management tool do you think is best for your small business?
Our goal with this article is to assist you in finding the best project management software for your business or at least facilitate your search for the right software.
Before choosing a small business project management software, you should answer a few questions.
- Are you looking for a particular feature?
- How much are you willing to spend?
- What kind of app do you feel your team will use?
Choose 2-3 tools from the list above based on your answers.
Trial and error are essential when finding a good solution, so you should try each one you find interesting and see how it suits you. Most of the tools offer a free trial or a free plan. You can try them out. Do not stick with a tool that does not work for you.
At the end of this exercise, you should be able to identify the best project management tool for your small business.