Finding software can be overwhelming. We've helped thousands of SMBs choose the right online PM software so they can centralize project data in the cloud and lower upfront IT costs.

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NetSuite OpenAir

NetSuite OpenAir offers buyers a collection of applications designed to support every stage of the professional services delivery lifecycle. Offered as Software-as-a-Service, the platform includes applications to manage projects, ... Read more

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Recent recommendations: 66 recommendations

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NetSuite SRP

NetSuite Professional Services Automation is used by professional services organizations to optimize their project-based operations. The software offers integrated project management, resource management, project-based accounting ... Read more

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Recent recommendations: 40 recommendations

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BigTime

BigTime is an online time and billing solution designed to serve professional service firms like accounting, engineering, government contracting, legal and IT services. The integrated solution offers features like time and expense... Read more

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Recent recommendations: 36 recommendations

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Workzone

Workzone is a project management solution that offers document management, project collaboration, customizable reporting, resource and task management and time tracking. The software is cloud-based and offers automated emailed rep... Read more

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Recent recommendations: 36 recommendations

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Project Insight

Project Insight (PI) is the work management hub helping companies manage projects, allocate personnel and track what work is being done throughout the entire organization. The intuitive software aggregates data from high-prod... Read more

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Recent recommendations: 35 recommendations

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Clarizen

Using Clarizen’s leading collaborative work management solution for the enterprise, businesses can solve challenges far beyond traditional work, project or resource management. With Clarizen’s enterprise-grade solution, teams are ... Read more

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Recent recommendations: 27 recommendations

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BQE Core Suite

BQE Core Legal is a cloud-based solution that offers integrated accounting, time tracking, and billing and invoicing. It can support the operations of a variety of law firms including litigation, corporate, family, tax, immigratio... Read more

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Recent recommendations: 24 recommendations

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Quickbase

Quick Base is a low-code application development platform that enables organizations to unite information, people, and workflows within distribution in a single, cloud-based platform. Unlike traditional software solutions, Quick B... Read more

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Recent recommendations: 22 recommendations

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Easy Projects

Easy Projects is a cloud-based project management platform suitable for midsize organizations and enterprises. Easy Projects provides every contributing team member, project manager, executive, stakeholder or customer with ac... Read more

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Recent recommendations: 20 recommendations

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KeyedIn

KeyedIn is a cloud-based project management solution for enterprise-level companies offering a suite with features, such as program management, professional services automation and project portfolio management application. The sol... Read more

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Recent recommendations: 20 recommendations

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WorkOtter

WorkOtter is a SaaS project, resource, and portfolio management solution built for teams of 50-200 who demand a simple, sensible, and supportable PPM alternative. Touting over 50 gorgeous, configurable, and full animated dashboard... Read more

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Recent recommendations: 17 recommendations

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FunctionFox

FunctionFox is a cloud-based time tracking and project management application, offering timesheets and estimates, as well as scheduling, task assignment, and reporting. FunctionFox’s capabilities are suited for the billing a... Read more

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Recent recommendations: 14 recommendations

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Workamajig

Workamajig is a cloud-based HTML5 project management solution designed for creative ad agencies and in-house advertising teams of all sizes. Key features include opportunity tracking, project management, time tracking, resource ma... Read more

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Recent recommendations: 10 recommendations

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Cora PPM

Cora Systems provide enterprise project and portfolio management solutions to global organizations and government agencies, such as Honeywell, Elanco, PwC, City of London and the UK’s National Health Service. Their solution, Cora ... Read more

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Recent recommendations: 10 recommendations

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Smartsheet

Smartsheet is a work execution platform and collaboration tool with a familiar spreadsheet-like interface that helps teams plan, track, and manage projects in real-time. Smartsheet features include a range of project management to... Read more

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Recent recommendations: 9 recommendations

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Replicon

Replicon's advanced timesheet functionality lets businesses track valuable information including check-ins/outs, task progress, and billable/non-billable hours. The invoice module allows users to build custom invoices, examine pay... Read more

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Recent recommendations: 9 recommendations

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Sciforma

Sciforma is a cloud-based project and portfolio management solution for enterprises that allows to strategically track and analyze project data and make relevant decisions. It can be sold as a stand-alone portfolio management, pro... Read more

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Recent recommendations: 9 recommendations

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Wrike

Wrike is a cloud-based project management platform for teams of 20+ that is suitable for both large enterprises and SMBs. It supports remote work for various teams. This solution comes with Gantt charts, calendars, workload view f... Read more

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Recent recommendations: 7 recommendations

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Aysling

Aysling is a cloud-based enterprise resource solution that can run an entire business, from leads to sales, through delivery to payments. Aysling is easy to deploy, configure, use, and manage while offering top-level support and a... Read more

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Recent recommendations: 7 recommendations

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MPOWR Envision

Designed to eliminate rigid departmentalization and streamline strategic execution, MPOWR Envision helps organizations build an execution strategy using open communication and organizational alignment. As a cloud-based execution t... Read more

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Recent recommendations: 6 recommendations

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Buyers guide


Last Updated: April 19, 2021

Online project management software allows teams to collaborate on and manage projects from initial concept to completion. Online tools, which run on a Web-based user interface (UI), offer potential benefits over traditional systems that are installed on-premises. For example, most online tools can be licensed for a relatively low monthly fee, which reduces your upfront investment.

We wrote this buyer’s guide to help you better understand this market and research the solutions that can fit your needs.

Here's what we'll cover in this guide:

What Is Online Project Management Software?
A Comparison of Top Online Project Management Solutions
What Type of Buyer Are You?
Important Considerations

What Is Online Project Management Software?

Online project management systems track and manage the lifespan of a project, offering functionality for everything from planning to defining a budget to assigning individual tasks to team members. By giving each member an up-to-date view of the progress, teams can coordinate and collaborate better to see a project through to completion.

Screenshot of the team management feature in AtTask, an online solution

An online project management tool can be a cost-effective choice for self-employed individuals, small businesses and enterprises alike. And because users can access their platform from anywhere with an Internet connection, it can also be a great tool to connect teams that are located in different parts of the world.

Since online project management software is built to be delivered over the Web, it has a modern look and feel that can often provide a superior user experience (UX). And because it is built in the cloud, vendors are able to maintain, host and update it for you. This reduces the need for dedicated IT staff to manage your company’s software infrastructure. It also makes it easier to keep your company running on the most recent version, since vendors roll out updates to customers automatically.

A Comparison of Top Online Project Management Solutions

There are many popular Online Project Management solutions on the market, and it can be hard to understand what distinguishes one product from another and which is right for you. To help you better understand how the top Online Project Management systems stack up against one another, we created a series of side-by-side product comparison pages that break down the details of what each solution offers in terms of pricing, applications, ease of use, support and more:

Top Pivotal Tracker Comparisons Top Basecamp Comparisons Top Evernote Comparisons
Pivotal Tracker vs. Jjira
Pivotal Tracker vs. Trello
Evernote vs. Basecamp
Slack vs. Basecamp
Evernote vs. Basecamp
Slack vs. Evernote
Trello vs. Evernote
Top Trello Comparisons Top Slack Comparisons  
Pivotal Tracker vs. Trello
Trello vs. Evernote
Trello vs. Slack
Slack vs. Basecamp
Slack vs. Evernote
Trello vs. Slack

What Type of Buyer Are You?

There are many types of project management tools, and it’s important to select a system that fits your needs. Here are a few special scenarios that will require extra attention when selecting a new system:

Small businesses. Most small businesses we speak with are looking for collaboration features, task management, project scheduling and document-sharing capabilities. This allows small businesses to keep up-to-date with the current state of the project and with tasks that are assigned to team members.

Departmental buyers. Some companies purchase software to manage projects for a specific department. For instance, design teams may require a system that allows for easy collaboration on projects and lets team members share and comment on design mockups. Meanwhile, IT departments may require features that support a specific development methodology, such as agile development. If you are buying for an individual department, make sure your software supports that department’s workflow.

Screenshot of a burn down chart for agile software development in Clarizen

Industry-specific buyers. A few industries have very specific project management needs. Construction project managers, for instance, need to be able to review blueprints, track job costs and allocate inventory within a single system. As a result, they need highly specialized software. Other industries that have unique project needs include complex custom manufacturing and software development firms. If you fit into this buyer type, make sure to find a vendor that supports your industry-specific requirements.

Important Considerations

When evaluating these systems, you should keep the following considerations in mind:

Mobile applications. If your project managers spend a lot of time out in the field, you may want to consider vendors who support a mobile application. This will allow project managers to log issues, track project progress and access important documents while outside the office. Some vendors offer an app built to run natively on your iPhone, iPad or Android device, while others simply provide a mobile version of their Web application. Make sure you take your mobile needs into account before selecting a vendor.

Relatedly, if you're looking for a product designed to run optimally with a Mac operating system, we've profiled PM solutions for Mac here.

Social activity stream support. Several vendors now incorporate activity streams—which look similar to a Facebook news feed—into their software, so that team members can report on and discuss progress. Team members can quickly attach approval documents, expense sheets or any other document to a comment. If you think this type of social collaboration would help your team better execute projects, ask vendors if they support activity streams.

Integration options. Many companies will want to integrate their project management system with existing business applications. For instance, integrating your project management system with your accounting application will allow you to send project expense reports and other financial data directly to accounting to make billing, invoicing and financial management of the project more fluid. If you want to connect your project management system with existing applications, be sure to check with the vendor to see what integrations they currently support, as building your own integrations can be time-consuming and difficult.