Find the best Small Business Project Management Software
What is small business project management software?Project management tools offer functionality that help small businesses plan and track projects on visual dashboards. These tools also serve as a repository of project related information and offer insights on employee performance and ROI of projects.
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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 about NetSuite OpenAir
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 about BigTime
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 about Wrike
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 about Workzone
BQE CORE Suite
BQE CORE Suite
BQE’s powerful all-in-one platform and expert support give A & E firms the intuitive tools they need to meet the demands of their firm, empower their team, maximize profitability, and deliver superior results to clients. BQE CO...Read more about BQE CORE Suite
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 about Smartsheet
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 about Workamajig
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 about FunctionFox
Deltek Ajera is an integrated accounting and project management solution built for architecture and engineering (A/E) firms. It is suitable for small to mid-size firms seeking an industry-tailored solution to improve project level...Read more about Deltek Ajera
Trello is a visual collaboration tool for planning tasks and projects. While commonly used by agile software development teams, the solution is also used in other departments such as marketing, sales, support and HR. The web-based...Read more about Trello
Basecamp is an efficient collaboration tool used by thousands of teams across the globe. Teams use Basecamp to keep track of assignments, work together on documents, plan projects, chat, and more. Basecamp is opinionated. It's b...Read more about Basecamp
Jira Software is a business process management tool used by agile teams to plan, track and release software. Jira Software supports Scrum, Kanban, a hybrid model or another unique workflow. Jira enables users to create project r...Read more about Jira
Evernote is a web-based project management tool that offers project collaboration, scheduling and task management functionalities within a suite. This solution is designed to cater to businesses of all sizes. Evernote allows ...Read more about Evernote Teams
GitHub is a project management and code sharing platform that allows users to share their codes with others and create/iterate using collective intelligence. The software can be used for different kinds of coding assignments inclu...Read more about GitHub
Simplify your tech stack and save on cost with the Content Cloud: a secure, easy-to-use platform built for the entire content lifecycle, from file creation and sharing, to co-editing, e-signature, classification, and retention. An...Read more about Box
Clockify is a cloud-based time tracking solution designed to help businesses monitor employee productivity, attendance and billable hours. Key features include time audit, reminders, data export, customizable reporting and permiss...Read more about Clockify
ClickUp is a cloud-based collaboration and project management tool suitable for businesses of all sizes and industries. Features include communication and collaboration tools, task assignments and statuses, alerts and a task toolb...Read more about ClickUp
Freshdesk is a cloud-based customer service software that helps businesses provide effortless service across every customer touchpoint. Freshdesk empowers businesses to monitor customer conversations across email, phone, chat, soc...Read more about Freshdesk
Procore manages your projects, resources, and financials from project planning to closeout. The platform connects every project contributor with the owner and general or specialty contractor. The centralized dashboard allows manag...Read more about Procore
Todoist is a to-do list and task manager for professionals and small businesses. Combining tasks, projects, comments, attachments, notifications, and more, Todoist lets users streamline their personal and team productivity and wo...Read more about Todoist
Buyers GuideLast Updated: March 16, 2023
Small businesses that replace inefficient manual systems with project management software reduce operating costs. Besides lowering costs, these tools help businesses improve employee productivity, resulting in better products and higher revenue.
That said, project management (PM) tools for small businesses differ in functionality, pricing and deployment. For instance, certain PM offerings are better for managing IT projects, while some solutions are more suitable for small marketing teams.
In this Buyer's Guide, we look at the core features, uses and benefits of small business PM software. Read on to learn what you should look for when deciding on the best PM tools for your business.
Here's what we'll cover:
What Is Small Business Project Management Software?
Common Features of Small Business Project Management Software
What Is Small Business Project Management Software?
Project management tools offer functionality that help small businesses plan and track projects on visual dashboards. These tools also serve as a repository of project related information and offer insights on employee performance and ROI of projects.
Small businesses that consult Software Advice for project management software have a low number of software users (less than 50), and are looking for an easy-to-use and cost-effective solution.
As a result, small businesses often choose cloud-based solutions that are available online, require no upkeep and offer intuitive interfaces with features such as drag-and-drop kanban dashboards.
Drag-and-drop in a Trello board
At small businesses, choosing a PM tool is a decision made by a handful of people at most. While this can simplify the decision-making process, it can be challenging to understand what functionality a particular small business needs. Once you identify the features most important to your company, you can identify the best candidates.
Common Features of Small Business Project Management Software
Build to-do-lists, add due dates to tasks and set-up automated reminders
Communicate with colleagues and stakeholders using task comments, activity streams and built-in chat boards
Store and share files, documents, videos etc, with project members on a centralized platform
View and track project progress as a series of task-lists or cards on Kanban/Scrum boards
Control the access of users to a project, functionality or file by setting-up permissions
View project progress reports as charts and graphs or as an email digest
Monitor the time employees spend on a single task or the whole project
What Type of Buyer Are You?
Research and advisory firm Gartner defines small businesses having under 100 employees and with less than $50 million in annual revenue. However, even within this broad category, the right PM tool for each small business differs based on factors such as actual number of software users, primary business challenges and so on.
Here are the three common types of small business PM software buyers:
Individual buyers: Individuals can manage projects by using low-cost or even free solutions. Common capabilities include basic task management with the ability to set due dates and reminders. Some software options offer additional functionality such as file sharing for attaching documents to tasks.
Best-of-breed buyers: These buyers are looking for software that solves specific challenges. For instance, one small business may be looking for a tool that helps improve team communication between project members working out of different locations. In this case, collaboration tools can be a good choice. On the other hand, small IT teams might be interested in bug tracking software, which is a specialized tool for tracking the time taken to resolve bugs in software.
Full-suite buyers: Some small businesses need all of the common PM features, with support for multiple users and additional functionality such as attaching documents to tasks. Full-suite small business PM tools are different from enterprise-grade tools called project portfolio management software, which offer sophisticated functionality such as analytics and resource planning.
As a small business, you want to invest in software that is low-cost, yet offers the relevant features you need. Likewise, you don't want a tool that employees need extensive training to use.
Here's are some of the top considerations small business buyers have when selecting project management software:
Deployment and availability: The first question when selecting software is whether to opt for an on-premise or cloud-based solution. For small businesses the latter option, also known as online project management software, is preferable as there are no upfront costs. If users are going to be accessing PM tools from Windows, Mac and mobile devices, you'll want an OS-agnostic solution.
Free vs. open source vs. low-cost: Many small business PM tools offer a free version with limited features. These are suitable for individuals, but not for businesses that need to track multiple simultaneous projects and users, and want full control over their project data. These businesses may be deciding between open source and low-cost tools. While open source PM tools are free to use, they can result in long-term costs since these systems have to be maintained on-site by a team member who has a lot of technical knowledge.
Integration: Last but not the least, small businesses should ensure that the PM tool offers basic integration with third-party tools that they use regularly. An increasingly important one is email integration, which allows project members to directly turn email into tasks. Similarly, integration with file sharing tools such as Box or Dropbox helps project members to easily attach notes and files to tasks.
From our research and conversations with small business project management buyers, we've identified these three emerging trends:
Agile project management: There has been a rise in specialized PM tools that help small businesses execute agile frameworks such as Scrum and Kanban. The reason behind this is the increasing popularity of agile PM, an approach that began with software companies but is becoming increasingly popular in businesses of all types.
Workplace collaboration: Social networking tools have changed how people communicate online. As a result, email has taken a back seat to collaborative tools that offer functionality such as comment threads for tasks, social chat groups, hashtags and ratings. Nearly all small business PM tools offer some level of collaboration, but some focus more closely on social media-like functionality.
Chatbots: An emerging trend in PM technology is the use of chatbots, which automate many different kinds of tasks. These can include project scheduling, booking online meetings, project status reporting and many more. The technology is relevant to small businesses as it's relatively cheap and easy to deploy.
Related Project Management Software
- Agile Project Management Software
- Kanban Software
- Scrum Software
- ALM Tools
- Bug Tracking Software
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- Online Project Management Software
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- Project Portfolio Management Software
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- Time And Expense Tracking Software
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- Construction Project Management Software
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- Small Business Project Management Software