5 project management apps to use in 2020 (and beyond)
What’s your biggest challenge when it comes to managing your team?
Managing task lists?
Communicating and delivering information?
Staying within budget?
Meeting your deadline?
All of the above and a few dozen others?
If this sounds familiar, then you, my friend, are in dire need of a project management app.
Step right up.
In this guide we’ll review what a project management app does and how it can help you organize your next project. Then we’ll break down a few of the top options on the market today.
What is a project management app?
A project management app is a tool used by project managers (PMs) to organize their teams and projects.
These tools allow you to create to-do lists, communicate with team members, assign tasks, and analyze your progress and KPIs throughout a project.
And while this sounds like project management apps should be the go-to for PMs, you’ll find only 22% of organizations using them.
And that’s partly due to a lack of understanding…
Roughly 42% of organizations don’t know the value of project management apps. They think they’re glorified to-do lists — and they can handle that with pen and paper, thank you very much.
To set them straight, here’s a break down of the core benefits of a good project management app:
- Seamless team collaboration and shared task lists
- Communication in real-time (notes, comments, files)
- Budget monitoring, so you don’t go over
- Time tracking to improve productivity
- Centralized file storing enabling everyone to see and access what they need
- Task delegation, with tags, files, due dates, descriptions, and more
- Cloud-based organization, so your team can work from wherever they are
Here’s a glimpse at monday.com’s project management board, to give you a sense of how this all comes together:
What options are there for project management apps?
Type “project management app” into Google, and you’ll see a range of options available.
So which should you choose?
It depends on what you’re using the project management tool for.
Let’s take a look at five.
1. monday.com — for complete project management from beginning to end
Having a project management app that can do it all makes it simpler to do your job as a PM. This is especially true if you’re managing an Agile team. With monday, you have access to a range of features that simplifies project management from start to finish.
This includes tools to promote (remote) team collaboration, document sharing, visual boards, task delegation, budget management, and analytics reporting.
Here’s a look at what this digital work platform offers:
- Visual workflows (kanban board, timeline, Gantt chart, calendar, and map)
- Custom workflow automation (no coding needed)
- Hundreds of templates ready to use
- Communicate via Zoom calls in the platform (or leave comments on tasks for specific users)
It works on Mac, Windows, Android, and iOS, so you can manage projects anywhere you go.
The pricing is monthly for a range of team sizes. For instance, for up to 5 users, the pricing starts at $39/mo for Basic, $49/mo for Standard, and $79/mo for Pro. Enterprises will have to call for a quote.
There’s a 14-day free trial for those who want to give it a test run.
What sets it apart:
- Supports communication for large teams
- Visual workflows make it quick to view progress (alongside automated reports)
- Easy to use
For a breakdown of how monday.com addresses your project management needs, check out this video:
2. Oracle Primavera — for scheduling team projects
Keeping your projects on track requires efficient scheduling. With Primavera, you have a single cloud-based platform for:
- planning projects
- prioritizing tasks
- executing tasks
- monitoring project progress
You also have access to analytics showcasing the health of your project.
The planning features are flexible, allowing for Lean and critical path method (CPM) scheduling. And you can use it on Mac, Windows, iOS, and Android devices.
As for pricing, you’ll have to get a quote directly through Oracle Primavera.
What sets it apart:
- User-friendly (for those familiar with PM apps)
- Easy team collaboration
- Can manage a complex project
3. Timely — for tracking time spent on tasks
Good time management is essential to completing your projects on time (every time).
With scope creep terrorizing 46% of team leaders who don’t use PM software, it’s critical to have a project management tool that improves task management efficiency.
Timely is a project management app designed specifically for tracking time spent on tasks. It’s available for Mac, Windows, iOS, and Android devices.
The tool uses AI to automate time tracking and timesheets and to build analytics reports. It also enables you to:
- Track activities privately (users can share what’s public)
- Access your private daily activity timeline
- View real-time performance of your team, budget, and project
- Capture all billable hours (without human error)
The pricing for Timely ranges between $5 per user monthly and $359 monthly for 30 users.
What sets it apart:
- Different pricing options to meet your budget
- Good customer service and user-friendly
- Helps to improve productivity and task management
4. Forecast.app — for automating project finances
Keeping track of your project budget is just as important as ensuring timely completion. Going over budget is a major concern for project managers, which is why having the right tools is essential.
We find 66% of PMs completing projects within budget using PM software.
Forecast.app is a project management app that enables you to track project finances using its automated project budgeting.
It can also manage quotes and provide estimates. But it’s AI enhancements improve efficiency by predicting project delivery dates and capacity needs.
It’s web-based/cloud/SaaS, so no need to install it on your computer. However, there’s an app for Android and iOS devices.
You can try this project management solution for free. Once you’re ready to upgrade, expect to spend $29 per user monthly (min. 10 users) for light, $49/mo for Pro, and $69/mo for Enterprise.
What sets it apart:
- More accurate project proposals
- Supports collaboration
- Actionable insights using real-time business profitability data
5. Templafy — for document management
Trying to organize documents into files, manage access, and ensure compliance can be a hassle. With Templafy, you can remove some of these issues.
With this project management app, you can:
- Create and share (branded) document templates
- Dynamically update documents
- Control brand compliance across the organization
- Secure documents (safe enough for IT teams to trust)
- Search for documents using filters
- Ensure version control
It’s available on Windows, Mac, Web, iOS, and Android. There’s also a free demo, but no free-trial. You’ll have to contact Templafy for a quote.
What sets it apart:
- Simple document template creation
- Unifies the brand across presentations/documents
How to find the right project planning software for your business
Choosing to adopt a PM app can be the difference between you completing projects on time and missing deadlines. Stats show that companies who use project management apps complete 61% of their work on time (compared to 41% of companies who don’t).
By using a collaboration tool, you can organize better, delegate tasks, track progress, and communicate in real-time.
So how do you choose?
Here are the criteria to look for:
- Easy implementation and no learning curve (we’re trying to make work easier here…)
- Team collaboration features
- Cloud-based to work with remote teams
- Customization of templates to enable you to work how you want to
Once you find the right project management app, you’ll find it’s easier to improve team efficiency. PM software can improve organization, communication, task delegation, and progress reporting — everything needed to become a better project manager.
When you’re ready to start tracking your projects using project management software, give our free project tracker template a try!