I’ll admit that when I first discovered Smartsheet I was blown away (and somewhat addicted).
As our business scaled up and our team grew, however, I quickly realized that we needed a more robust project management platform. We still use Smartsheet for specific projects and SOPs, but tie it all together with a pureplay project management tool.
The following platfroms were ALL tested by myself and our team, prior to settling on our #1 pick (see below).
Summary: If you need to get your team together, collaborating in ONE virtual environement, Wrike provides the closest thing to a shared workspace. Third-party integrations are nice, but the magic of Wrike is that it all can be done in one app, one dashboard, and in real-time.
An “all-in-one” workspace that stands alone as a unified workspace (consolidates your workspace)
Native document editor that updates in real-time for full collaboration
Unique “Wrike Proof” built-in mechanism for providing optimal feedback loops
Unique “Wrike Lock” to control access to restricted data & audit control
Summary: Nutcache is not your typical project management tool, melding traditional PM views with financial management, expense projections, and specialized versions for specific industries and use cases.
Unique budget management, tracking and projection dashboards (ideal for cost control and client billing)
Specialized builds available for Development teams, Creative & Marketing teams, and Freelancers.
Robust invoicing and project management system for Freelancers (integrates with all major payment software)
14 daysfully featured Free Trial
Cheaper than Smartsheet per user (at each pricing tier)
Might be overkill for basic freelance management
No permanent free version (unlike Trello, Asana, etc…)
Nutcache Prices: Starts at $8.95 per month for the basic Freelancer plan (1 user), and actually goes DOWN to $6/month per user for the Pro account (beyond 1 user). The Enterprise price point is $12 per month per user. The Pro and Enterprise are effective across the specialized plans, too, regardless of what type of team you are.
Summary: The free version of Asana is still among the most capable project management tools, flexible for agile style workflows (like Trello) or more traditional to-do list and timeline based projects. At a certain point you will want to scale up to the paid version, which adds a bit more functionality but not as much as other tools.
Intuitive and easy to use (no manual or wiki required)
Ideal for agile style waterfall project tracking
Integrates with many other tools and apps, including Slack for seamless notifications and Gsuite
Excellent real-time chat functionality on cards (almost no lag)
Easy to assign and delegate tasks
Robust free version
Actively avoids feature bloat
Somewhat limited functionality beyond waterfall cards, although they are adding more features
Paid version a bit underpowered comapred to peers
No per user cost structure (no price inflation as you scale)
Asana Prices: Asana starts off free (remarkably functional) and then scales with a $10.99 Premium Plan and a $24.99 Business Plan (more advanced integrations).
Summary: ProWorkflow is another full-stack project management tool, boasting many integrations particularly on the accounting site of the house. ProWorkflow is particularly useful for larger teams as they scale.
Full project management software, not just a spreadsheet
128bit encryption and SAS70 Type II compliant data centers (more robust than Smartsheet)
Capable of handling larger teams and even divisions of companies
Flexible API hook for in-depth custom integrations
Free client and customer access (no payment required)
Summary: Trying to move your organization towards a large multi-departmental objective? Celoxis has mastered the art of cross-platform and project integration, with multiple path dependencies to synchronize those large scale mission oriented projects.
Offers fully functional free trial
Supports cross-project dependencies
Resource management and allocation views and templates built-in
Microsoft Project synchronization and full compatibility
Offers Chinese, Arabic, and Russian language support
Live chat customer support
Not as approachable for the average user compared to Smartsheet
Starting price point is over 2X that of Smartsheet
Celoxis Prices: Celoxis starts at $25 / month per user for thier Cloud version, with a $450 on premise setup fee (per user / one time).
Summary: Mavenlink is more than just a project management tool. It syncs relevant DATA to DECISIONS in a symbiotic project management view, going beyond basic task tracking. While Mavenlin integrates with many large-enterprise software suites, they also integrate with smaller players. Their enterprise pricing can pricey, but starts off at a surprisingly approachable $19 / month per user.
Extra built-in data analytics functionality (beyond just project management)
Extensive project accounting features
Advanced Business Intelligence analysis and views
Hard and Soft resource allocation reports and views
Summary: It’s not the sexiest project management solution, but Microsoft Project is a remarkably capable alternative worth taking a look at. Best of all, it integrates with the rest of the Microsoft ecosystem so if you are a Microsoft organization, the benefits may be hard to pass up.
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