The project management landscape is changing. In a PWC survey, as many as 97% of organizations agreed that PM is critical to business performance and organizational success, and 94% believe that PM enables business growth. The report also found that the PM maturity levels were on a rise and the use of commercially available specialized project management software drove higher levels of performance and satisfaction with an organization’s PM practices. Having said that, finding the right software for project management has always been a challenge to buyers. There are hundreds of tools in the market and it can be quite daunting finding the right one for your organizational requirements. To make your job easier, we have gathered and compiled 15 of the best PM platforms out there that you can consider.

1. Top Choice for Comprehensive Enterprise Project Management – Celoxis

Celoxis is an exceptional enterprise-level project management software, acclaimed for its unparalleled depth in functionality and its ability to cater to complex, large-scale project environments. It stands out in the market for its comprehensive feature set, including advanced project planning, in-depth resource management, sophisticated reporting, and seamless integration capabilities. Celoxis is especially adept at handling intricate project scenarios, offering robust tools for risk management, scenario planning, and detailed financial tracking. Its capability to provide a 360-degree view of projects makes it a preferred choice for mid to large organizations seeking a single, powerful tool to manage all aspects of project and portfolio management.

Major global corporations and enterprises across various sectors have chosen Celoxis for its superior performance and scalability. The platform is designed to meet the demanding needs of large teams, offering custom-configured solutions that align with specific organizational processes and goals. Celoxis’ pricing reflects its premium positioning, with a model that emphasizes value and return on investment for mid to large-scale project management needs.

Popular brands such as Rolex, Jabil, HBO, Deloitte, Del Monte, The Cheesecake Factory, University of Washington, Singapore Post, and Harman have been using Celoxis successfully for years. Celoxis is available for a custom pricing, which could save you money in the long run. It is available in SaaS and On-Premise deployment options.

Pros

  • Unmatched in its comprehensive and advanced feature set for enterprise project management.
  • Exceptional capability in handling complex, multi-faceted projects with ease.
  • Offers a high degree of customization and robust integration with enterprise systems.

Cons

  • No mobile app
  • The extensive functionality could be more than required for smaller projects or organizations, making it a highly specialized tool for larger enterprises.

Online Ratings

Gartner – 4.5
Capterra – 4.4
G2 Crowd – 4.4

2. Best for Organizations Focusing on Portfolio and Resource Management – Planview

Planview is a comprehensive enterprise management software, specializing in portfolio and resource management. It stands out in the market for its ability to provide a holistic view of an organization’s resources, budgets, and projects. Planview’s strong suit lies in its robust portfolio management capabilities, allowing for strategic planning and optimizing resource allocation across multiple projects. This tool is particularly favored in scenarios where there’s a need to align project execution with business strategy and for companies dealing with a large number of concurrent projects. Planview includes features such as advanced analytics, detailed reporting, and integration with various business systems.

Notable companies like Siemens, Volvo, and Philips have utilized Planview to enhance their project and portfolio management processes. Planview offers different product tiers, catering to various business needs, from smaller project teams to large-scale enterprise portfolio management. Pricing varies based on the product tier and the number of users, with a focus on providing tailored solutions to fit different organizational needs.

Pros

  • Comprehensive portfolio and resource management capabilities.
  • Advanced analytics and reporting tools for informed decision-making.
  • Customizable to fit a wide range of business needs.

Cons

  • Can be complex and overwhelming for new users.
  • Higher cost, particularly for smaller teams or businesses.
  • Integration with external tools and systems can be challenging and may require additional configuration.

Online Ratings

Gartner – 4.5
Capterra – 4.0
G2 Crowd – 3.8

3. Best for Organizations Specializing in Product Development and R&D – Planisware

Planisware is a highly specialized project management software, particularly focused on serving the needs of organizations involved in product development, research and development (R&D), and complex engineering projects. It’s renowned in the market for its advanced capabilities in handling the unique challenges of managing long-term, intricate projects that involve numerous stages and interdisciplinary collaboration. Planisware excels in areas such as product lifecycle management (PLM), stage-gate processes, and resource allocation, making it an ideal choice for industries like pharmaceuticals, aerospace, and automotive. Features like robust scenario planning, extensive portfolio management, and detailed budget tracking are key highlights.

Several prominent companies in the fields of pharmaceuticals, aerospace, and automotive industries have adopted Planisware for its specialized features. Planisware offers a range of solutions from Planisware Enterprise, suited for large organizations, to Planisware Orchestra, designed for project portfolio management in smaller and medium-sized businesses. The pricing structure is typically customized based on the scale and specific needs of the organization, reflecting the tool’s focus on providing tailored solutions.

Pros

  • Deeply specialized in product lifecycle management and R&D processes.
  • Strong capabilities in scenario planning and stage-gate management.
  • Tailored solutions for both large enterprises and medium-sized businesses.

Cons

  • May be overly complex for standard project management needs.
  • The learning curve can be steep due to its specialized features.
  • Customization and setup require significant time and resources, potentially leading to higher initial costs.

Online Ratings

Gartner – 4.1
Capterra – 4.2
G2 Crowd – 3.9

4. Best for Versatile, Spreadsheet-Like Project Management – Smartsheet

Smartsheet is a dynamic project management software that combines the familiarity of spreadsheets with the robust functionality of a project management software. It is particularly favored by teams and businesses that are accustomed to spreadsheet interfaces but require more powerful project tracking and collaboration features. Smartsheet’s unique selling point is its spreadsheet-like interface that simplifies data entry and tracking, while providing advanced features like Gantt charts, automated workflows, and real-time collaboration. This tool is ideal for a wide range of project types and sizes, appealing to both project management novices and veterans who appreciate the blend of simplicity and depth.

Companies across various industries, from tech startups to large corporations, have adopted Smartsheet for its flexible and intuitive design. Smartsheet offers various pricing tiers, from individual plans to enterprise-level solutions, making it accessible for a broad spectrum of users. The pricing is based on the number of users and the level of functionality required, with options for both monthly and annual billing.

Pros

  • Intuitive spreadsheet-like interface for easy adoption.
  • Flexible and customizable to suit a wide range of project types.
  • Strong collaboration features and integration with popular tools.

Cons

  • May lack the depth in certain specialized project management features compared to more niche tools.
  • The spreadsheet format, while familiar, can be limiting for complex project visualization and reporting.
  • The cost can escalate quickly with the addition of more users and advanced features.

Online Ratings

Gartner – 4.4
Capterra – 4.5
G2 Crowd – 4.4 

5. Best for Integrated Business Management and Collaboration – Kantata

Kantata, formerly known as Mavenlink and Kimble, is a comprehensive business management and project management solution designed for service-driven industries. It excels in combining project management, resource planning, project accounting, and team collaboration in one integrated platform. Kantata is particularly well-suited for professional services organizations, such as marketing agencies, IT services, and consulting firms, where seamless integration of project and resource management with financials is crucial. Its strengths lie in advanced resource planning, project accounting, and analytics capabilities, offering a holistic view of business operations.

Kantata has been adopted by a diverse range of professional services firms worldwide. The platform provides a variety of pricing tiers, catering to the needs of mid-sized businesses to large enterprises. The pricing strategy is tailored according to the specific needs and scale of the organization, reflecting its focus on providing a bespoke service.

Pros

  • Comprehensive solution integrating project management, resource planning, and financials.
  • Strong analytics and reporting capabilities for informed decision-making.
  • Tailored for professional services industries with specific functionality for these sectors.

Cons

  • The comprehensive nature of the tool can make it complex and potentially overwhelming for new users.
  • The cost may be on the higher side, particularly for smaller organizations.
  • Due to its specialized focus, it may not be as suitable for non-service-based industries or simpler project management needs.

Online Ratings

Gartner – 4.0
Capterra – 4.2
G2 Crowd – 4.2

6. Best for Teams looking for Priority-based Scheduling – LiquidPlanner

LiquidPlanner is one of the most impressive and complex work-management systems in the market. Unlike every other project management software, it allows employees to enter their best- and worst-case scenario times for tasks and their advanced priority-based scheduling engine rolls up these estimates to automatically predict reliable finish dates. The tool is best preferred for project environments marked by high levels of uncertainty in project schedules and shifting priorities. The tool also has other features like built-in time tracking and collaboration.

Popular brands such as Bayer, Cisco, and Daimler have been using LiquidPlanner for many years. LiquidPlanner offers two account levels: Professional and Enterprise. Both of these account levels require a minimum of five users and all pricing is based on annual contracts. LiquidPlanner costs more than many other project management apps.

Pros

  • LiquidPlanner has rich time-tracking and time-estimation features.
  • Drag-and-drop simplicity and intuitive UI.
  • Cross-project visibility.

Cons

  • A pricey tool.
  • A good amount of learning is required to get started and a significant amount of time is required in the initial setup.
  • Very few business-friendly integration options.

Online Ratings

Gartner – 4.7
Capterra – 4.3
G2 Crowd – 4.2

7. Leading in Versatility and Innovation – ClickUp

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ClickUp stands out as a forward-thinking project management software, setting the benchmark for versatility and innovation in the workspace. It is celebrated for its all-in-one design, seamlessly integrating task management, document sharing, goal setting, and time tracking into a singular, user-friendly platform. ClickUp distinguishes itself by offering an unprecedented level of customization, enabling users to tailor the tool to fit their specific workflow needs precisely. Its commitment to continuous improvement and the addition of cutting-edge features make it a top choice for teams looking for a dynamic and adaptable project management solution.

Adopted by a diverse array of businesses, from nimble startups to expansive enterprises, ClickUp is designed to scale, ensuring that it grows alongside your team. The platform’s pricing structure is competitive and inclusive, offering solutions for teams of any size with a generous free tier, affordable premium options, and enterprise-grade services. This approach ensures that ClickUp remains accessible to a broad audience, emphasizing its mission to make productive work accessible to everyone.

Pros

  • Unrivaled customization options that cater to a wide variety of project management needs.
  • A comprehensive suite of features that supports a multitude of work processes within a single platform.
  • Agile development philosophy, with frequent updates and new features based on user feedback.

Cons

  • The sheer number of features and customization options can be overwhelming for new users.
  • While affordable, the cost can increase as teams require access to more advanced features.
  • Users may encounter a learning curve to fully leverage the platform’s extensive capabilities, requiring time and dedication to master.

Online Ratings

Gartner – 4.2
Capterra – 4.6
G2 Crowd – 4.7

8. Best for Small Teams looking to move away from Spreadsheets & Emails – Asana

Asana is a handy platform for teams looking to move away from using spreadsheets and emails, yet not overwhelm themselves with advanced project management capabilities. Asana is an advanced to-do list software that emphasizes deadlines and due dates and brings in the nitty-gritty of basic task management including sub-tasks and a slick timeline view. Asana also offers basic reporting to track project progress and plenty of integration options to tie it all together. The software, however, has limited features and is not intended for pure project management requirements such as time tracking, resource management, and project financials.

Asana is widely used globally and includes big-name clients like Dropbox, Vodafone, Uber, and IDEO. Asana comes in two paid flavors, Premium and Enterprise and also offers a free basic version. The timeline view, custom fields, task dependencies, and security features are available in their paid plans.

Pros

  • Modern and crisp user interface.
  • Very easy to use.
  • Relatively inexpensive monthly user cost (for paid versions)

Cons

  • A very limited and rudimentary feature set, lacking even the basic task estimation and time tracking capabilities.
  • Cannot assign multiple people to the same task.
  • Because of its over-simplified UI design, the system can get out-of-control with an increased number of projects, tasks, and team members.

Online Ratings

Gartner – 4.4
Capterra – 4.5
G2 Crowd – 4.3

9. Best for Teams looking for a Collaborative Tool – Trello

Trello is a great tool for people who aren’t familiar with Gantt charts or project management vocabulary. It is a light-weight tool that uses highly visual kanban-style boards for project management and team collaboration. While the tool is great for teams and projects that require simple to-do lists and basic task management, Trello lacks project management basics as Gantt charts, time-tracking components, resource management, and reporting tools. Trello’s design philosophy is centered around collaboration and visual work management and is not ideal for businesses that need more than a visual organization of work and checklists.

Trello has been widely used by companies like Google, Red Hat and Adobe where small groups need a collaborative platform to manage their daily activities.

Trello has two plans: Business Class and Enterprise that allows unlimited integration (called Trello Power-Ups) with tools like Evernote, MailChimp, Jira and more, along with basic security and file encryption policies. Trello also offers a true free forever version.

Pros

  • Visual and lightweight task collaboration app.
  • Pre-made boards and templates for different types of projects.
  • Easy to learn and intuitive UI.

Cons

  • Light on features – lacks Gantt charts, time tracking, resource management, billing, and reporting capabilities.
  • Basic security, even with the Enterprise plan.
  • As the number of boards and teams increases, the interface can get messy.

Online Ratings

Gartner – 4.3
Capterra – 4.5
G2 Crowd – 4.4

10. Best for Small Marketing Teams with Proofing Requirements – ProofHub

ProofHub would be your best bet if you are looking to facilitate project management and team collaboration for marketing and creative teams for small businesses. It includes everything that is needed to run your marketing projects efficiently keeping track of every detail giving you real-time visibility into everything your team is working on. ProofHub is a straightforward software that does not complicate project management any more than necessary and includes only the essential features like task management, time tracking, online proofing and approval, kanban boards, discussions and group chats, and reporting.

ProofHub is used by leading organizations like Netflix, TripAdvisor, Nike and many more. The software is available in two variants: Essential and Ultimate Control. Both of these options are charged a flat fee for an unlimited number of users, rather than charging per user.

Pros

  • Seamless communication and collaboration capabilities.
  • Competitively priced.
  • No per-user license fees.

Cons

  • No project financials.
  • Limited integrations.
  • Not optimized for slow internet connection and may face occasional interface annoyances.

Online Ratings

Gartner – 4.0
Capterra – 4.6
G2 Crowd – 4.5

11. Best for Teams looking for a Tool from CRM to Invoicing – Scoro

If your organization needs an all-in-one solution for managing customers, tracking sales to invoicing automation, then Scoro should be on your shortlist. It has a tidy set of features suitable for small to medium-sized teams and enables the users to unify data across their CRM, billing and work management tools, thus eliminating the need for separate tools. Scoro is an end-to-end business management solution that allows client-based businesses like agencies to eliminate routine project management tasks and streamline the entire workflow from one place.

Brands like Air Guru, Grant Thornton, and WSI trust Scoro to run their businesses smoothly and efficiently. Scoro comes in three plans: Plus, Premium and Ultimate. All plans require a minimum 5 user sign-up.

Pros

  • The tool comes with plenty of customizations.
  • Out-of-the-box integration with all popular accounting systems like QuickBooks and Xero.
  • Covers a broad spectrum of business – from sales right through to billing.

Cons

  • Lacks core project management features such as Gantt charts, sub-tasks, critical path, resource load charts, etc.
  • Lacks team collaboration capabilities.
  • Needs onboarding services for successful adoption.

Online Ratings

Gartner – 4.5
Capterra – 4.6
G2 Crowd – 4.5 

12. Best for Scalable, Customizable Project Management – Wrike

Wrike is a versatile and scalable project management software, well-suited for teams and businesses seeking customizable workflows and comprehensive project tracking capabilities. It distinguishes itself with its high degree of adaptability, allowing users to tailor the platform to their specific project management processes and needs. Wrike’s strengths include advanced task management, real-time collaboration tools, and customizable dashboards that provide a clear overview of project statuses and performance metrics. It’s ideal for teams that require a mix of standard project management features with the flexibility to adapt to complex workflows.

Wrike has been adopted by a variety of organizations, from small businesses to large enterprises, across multiple industries. The platform offers a range of pricing options, from free basic plans for small teams to more advanced enterprise solutions. Pricing is generally based on the number of users and the level of features required, with flexibility to scale as organizational needs evolve.

Pros

  • Highly customizable, allowing for tailored workflows and dashboards.
  • Robust task management and real-time collaboration features.
  • Scalable solution that grows with the business, suitable for a wide range of team sizes and industries.

Cons

  • The high level of customization can result in a steeper learning curve for new users.
  • Advanced features and higher user tiers can become expensive.
  • Some users may find the interface less intuitive compared to more visually-oriented project management software.

Online Ratings

Gartner – 4.5
Capterra – 4.3
G2 Crowd – 4.2

13. Best for User-Friendly Interface and Customization – Monday.com

Monday.com is a highly intuitive and customizable project management software, known for its user-friendly interface and flexible features. It stands out for its ability to adapt to various project management styles and business workflows, making it a popular choice among a wide range of industries. Monday.com offers a visually appealing interface with drag-and-drop functionality, making project tracking and collaboration both straightforward and engaging. It’s especially effective for teams looking for a balance between simplicity and powerful project management capabilities. Key features include customizable workflows, multiple view options like Kanban and Gantt charts, and a wide array of integration options.

A diverse set of organizations, from small startups to large enterprises, have embraced Monday.com for its adaptability and ease of use. Monday.com offers different pricing plans, ranging from basic to enterprise levels, catering to the needs of different team sizes and requirements. The pricing model is primarily user-based, providing flexibility for teams to scale up or down as needed.

Pros

  • Highly user-friendly and visually appealing interface.
  • Extensive customization options to suit different project management needs.
  • Wide range of integrations with other tools and software.

Cons

  • Can become costly as teams grow and require more advanced features.
  • While versatile, it may lack some advanced features needed for highly specialized project management.
  • The simplicity of the interface might limit detailed data analysis and reporting for complex projects.

Online Ratings

Gartner – 4.5
Capterra – 4.6
G2 Crowd – 4.7

14. Best for Single-user Desktop – Microsoft Project 

Microsoft Project is the behemoth of the project management software industry. It is the dominant PC-based single-user project management software in today’s marketplace. Microsoft Project works only on Microsoft Windows. While it supports all the typical things you’d want to do in a project management app, one cannot emphasize enough that the tool is meant to be used by experienced and trained project managers. The user interface is very similar to other Microsoft Office apps, which comes much to the relief of organizations who are already a Microsoft house and invested in other Microsoft products.

Pros

  • Powerful and built-in integration with Microsoft software suites like Office 365, Sharepoint, and Skype.
  • Prominence in the industry with 20 million users and over 10,000 organizations.
  • The tool has a set of high-quality tools and offers a lot of flexibility and customization for power users.

Cons

  • Demands a very high learning curve and reliance on a certified project manager on board to drive the software. Users frequently complain that once the beginning is understood, it requires patience and training to advance one’s scheduling skills.
  • MS Project is highly complex, unintuitive and unforgiving software, and even after rigorous training, users do not know how to use the flexibility correctly.
  • Customized reports are difficult to create and require additional tools like Power BI. Lack of real-time dashboards makes it hard to stay on top of projects.

Online Ratings

Gartner – 4.3
Capterra – 4.4
G2 Crowd – 4.0

15. Optimal Solution for SMEs and Project Collaboration – Zoho Project

Zoho Project emerges as a highly favored project management software, especially for small to medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) looking for an affordable yet comprehensive solution. It is celebrated for its intuitive interface, ease of use, and extensive feature set that covers project planning, tracking, and collaboration. Zoho Projects stands out for its seamless integration with the Zoho ecosystem and other popular business tools, facilitating a connected and efficient workflow environment. Its flexibility in managing diverse project types and its capability to support remote teams make it a go-to platform for businesses aiming to enhance productivity and team collaboration.

Zoho Project has been widely adopted across various industries, thanks to its scalability and the value it offers at competitive price points. From basic task management to complex project planning and reporting, Zoho Projects provides a versatile range of features that cater to the dynamic needs of growing businesses. The platform offers multiple pricing tiers, including a free plan for small teams, making it accessible to businesses at different stages of growth.

Pros

  • User-friendly interface and straightforward setup, ideal for SMEs and teams new to project management software.
  • Excellent integration capabilities with the Zoho suite and other business applications, enhancing productivity and data flow.
  • Competitive pricing with a generous free tier, offering great value for small to medium-sized businesses.

Cons

  • While robust, its features may be outpaced by more specialized, high-end project management software, particularly for very large or complex projects.
  • Advanced features and customization options may require higher-tier plans, impacting budget-conscious businesses.
  • Users looking for extensive third-party integrations may find limitations compared to platforms with a broader ecosystem focus.

Online Ratings

Gartner – 4.2
Capterra – 4.4
G2 Crowd – 4.3

Conclusion

Choosing the best software for project management is crucial in 2024, with options ranging from comprehensive enterprise solutions like Celoxis to versatile platforms like ClickUp and specialized tools like Planview. Whether you’re a small business or a large enterprise, the key to success lies in selecting a tool that aligns with your project requirements, team size, and budget. The best project management software offer a mix of functionality, customization, and integration capabilities to streamline workflows, enhance collaboration, and drive project success. As technology evolves, staying informed and adaptable will be paramount for project managers seeking to leverage these tools effectively.


himanshi

Have a look at ProofHub also. It is a great tool. It makes it easy to create plans, collaborating teams and keeping things organised to deliver projects on time.

jose

Great! Nowadays, these are the latest and best project management software in the market. Every Profession is looking for the project management software. But here is another project management software and called as orangescrum.com. Orangescrum is free agile project management software to manage projects, task and team in a single place.

rica

I like Z-Stream by Zazmic https://zazmic.io/ . There are some very interesting solutions I've never met in similar apps. One of them comprehensive in-app QA functionality for example. You can write and run individual tests, manage and track software testing without extra plugins for it.

andrew

Let me add one more tool. I would classify it as "Best for project visualization and getting easy-to-read timeline" - GanttPRO Gantt chart software https://ganttpro.com. However, it offers far more features than a simple Gantt chart view: progress tracking, deadline management, resource management, cost management, personal calendars, undo, baseline, collaboration, resource workload. Notably that the learning curve is quite short and after spending a few minutes in the app, you'll be able to create your first project.

jane

These are all great applications. If you don’t not mind, please check out Fanurio: Fanurio (http://www.fanuriotimetracking.com) can do project management, time tracking and invoicing. It can be used on Windows, OS X and Linux. A license costs $59 and you can use it forever.


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