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5 Extremely Cheap Project Management Software Products You can Consider

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What is the best cheap project management software?

The best cheap project management software is monday.com. The app is a killer at automating workflows, freeing you of redundant tasks. Its stunning visual approach gives you a snapshot of your project at a glance. Dashboards are intuitive and easy to customize so you can work at your own terms.

Finding right project management tools can be difficult, especially when you’re low on budget. However, that doesn’t mean you have to settle for low-quality platforms that can barely provide you with the solutions you need. There are plenty of affordable options out there that can give you powerful features ranging from task management to time tracking without breaking the bank. This is why we’ve prepared this article to help you out in choosing cheap, yet efficient project management software products.

project management software

What are the best cheap project management software products?

Business undertakings require good teamwork, effective communication, and most importantly, careful planning and execution. Whether you are working on something as simple as organizing an office gathering or something as elaborate as launching a new product, these factors play a big role in ensuring the success of your endeavors. In fact, in a survey by PricewaterhouseCoopers, results show that 97% of professionals believe that thorough project management is critical to business performance. The question now is, “how can you organize your projects properly and make sure that everyone on your team follows through on your plan?” Well, this is where project management software comes in.

Built to increase productivity and efficiency in the workplace, these platforms can resolve a number of pain points for many project managers and entrepreneurs. As seen on the table provided, many projects fail due to a lack of change management, inadequate risk planning, sudden changes in strategy, as well as poor communication. On top of that, according to a study by the Standish Group, only a third of projects get completed on time and on a budget in a year.

Source: AITS

By reinforcing your operations with a project management solution, you can avoid these problems and even improve the overall performance of your team. These platforms come with an array of tools created specifically for project management purposes. Be it task management, work delegation, resource allocation, or time tracking, you can count on these applications to equip you and your team with everything you need to streamline and simplify your work.

Unfortunately, despite having numerous benefits, entrepreneurs still tend to shy away from these types of software because investing in one can cost quite a lot. Luckily, there are plenty of affordable choices on the market, and with these, you can easily reap the benefits of this type of software without spending a fortune. Without further ado, here are the five cheap project management software products available on the market. Of course, these aren’t the only options available. If you’d like to browse for other platforms, you should also take a look at our list of top project management systems.

1. monday.com

monday dashboard example

For just $39 per month for 5 users, monday.com heads our extremely cheap project management software that you can consider. Clean, intuitive and visually stunning, this fully powered project management tool gets to the heart of your project workflows and delivers automation to relieve you of process bottlenecks and headache.

monday.com features timeline views to get you to the center of tasks and assigned team member so you know where any stage of your project stands. Switch to map view so you get a holistic picture in an instant, and clear up with works that are holding the whole workflow.

The vendor has an appealing free trial where you can tinker with the features at no cost. You can sign up for monday.com free trial here.

monday.com

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monday.com won our Expert's Choice Award for 2018

Our score
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Customize dashboards any way you want so you get on top of activities within your own comfort level. Add in logos and themes to get that professional touch when showing things off with project shareholders and other team members.

Need to reach out with any staff or the manager? Easily done with monday.com’s email integration, eliminating the need to switch to your email app of choice.

If storage issues have been plaguing your projects before, 50GB of space should more than take care of that. The centralized repository makes collaboration a breeze, ensuring that required documents, blueprints, approval forms get to the intended recipients in a timely manner.

Why Choose monday.com?

  1. Get anyone on board quickly, simply. No need for circuitous loops, labyrinth approval corners: a simple email will do the rest. Sign up, sign in, start contributing, share and collaborate any way you wish.
  2. Customize and automate workflow. Project management is all about moving essential works fast. This cannot happen if each task comes with a dozen mundane tasks getting in the way. monday.com relieves you of these redundancies so you can focus on essential tasks, quickly.
  3. Fully visual. From kanban board or chart view to files or calendar view, you get a snapshot of your projects to act on any section that needs your immediate attention.

2. Wrike

wrike dashboard example

Wrike is built to help professionals improve the efficiency and productivity of their operations. It is fully equipped with tools that let you schedule, prioritize, manage, discuss, and monitor projects without having to use multiple programs. 

Wrike offers a handful of great features such as its intuitive task prioritization, interactive timeline, real-time newsfeed, workload management, and data protection tools. On top of that, this platform is completely accessible on mobile devices to help you work on the fly. It can also be integrated with file storage software like Google Docs and Dropbox to help you make document management easier.

Wrike recently introduced a number of new features to help you better in your project management tasks. For instance, it now has a built-in job number feature, where a unique task identifier is assigned automatically for every project you do, making referencing and searching significantly simple. It also introduced a new, simplified, and enhanced dashboard that allows increased visibility, improved navigation, etc. You can also build your own dashboards directly from Wrike’s templates.

Why Choose Wrike?

  1. Optimized File Management. Having an organized filing system is important when you are tackling projects for clients. To help you optimize the way you keep your documents, Wrike offers an optimized file management system that lets you upload and edit documents without saving attachments to your computer. This way, all your team members can get access to the files and even see any changes to them in real-time. Data protection options are also available so that you can safeguard all your confidential company information from prying eyes.
  2. Efficient Resource Tracking Tools. Project managers need to know every aspect of the projects they handle. This is why Wrike comes with a visual timeline that lets you get bird’s eye view of your project schedule, delegations, and dependencies. It even has a resource management tool that allows you to balance assets and track performance as well as time and budget tracking capabilities that let you know how time and money is being spent on each project.
  3. Customizable Workflows. Streamlining projects can be complicated. With Wrike’s customizable workflow planning tool, you can set the pace for every project you undertake more efficiently. This feature will allow you to gain visibility into your work at each stage, determine the resources you’ll be needing, set an accurate timeline for your project, and more. It can even be customized to match your business’ existing workflow if you wish.  

3. Zoho Projects

zoho projects dashboard example

Zoho Projects is an intuitive and user-friendly project management solution trusted by companies such as Intel, Jaguar, and Timex. Created for planning and tracking projects, it can help you divide projects into manageable units so that measuring their progress is much easier. This mobile-ready platform also offers a number of other features to reinforce your project management needs like custom reporting, time tracking, meeting organization, bug tracking, and document management.

Zoho Projects is available for free if you have a team of five or less and only handle 2 projects at a time. However, if you have a larger workforce and a heavier workload, you may also choose from their four paid plans. Zoho’s Standard, Express, Premium, and Enterprise plans are priced according to the number of users and projects you will be handling at a time and can easily be upgraded or downgraded depending on your needs. They cost $25, $50, $100, and $150 per month when billed monthly but you may get discounted prices when you choose to have them billed annually. You can sign up for a Zoho Projects free trial here.

Some of its newest features include Blueprint, a tool that allows users to generate workflows, connect activities, and monitor them across the entire workflow process. It now also has project status & custom fields feature. This allows you to include project statuses and then monitor them. In the project layout view, users can now add new sections and organize various custom fields. From the task classic view, you can also easily modify task durations, e.g., from days to hours, days to weeks, etc.

Why Choose Zoho Projects?

  1. Online Gantt Chart. Overlooking details can have costly consequences. Make sure you get a clear view of the status of your projects and the dependencies between tasks with Zoho Projects. The platform has an online Gantt Chart with drag-and-drop functionality to make it easier for you to plan, reschedule tasks, or make changes to your workflow. The tasks you enter into the chart can even be filtered by start date, end date, duration, or percentage complete depending on what your priority is.
  2. Time Tracking Capabilities. Time is the most valuable resource in business, so you need to make sure that every second is used wisely. With Zoho Projects’ time tracking capabilities, you can create timesheets and have them into various formats automatically. The platform can even load all this data into your accounting system to make invoicing and billing much easier and more transparent.   
  3. Seamless Integrations. Project management is only one aspect of your business. This is why Zoho Projects is built to support integrations seamlessly. Aside from being able to run alongside other Zoho applications, Zoho Projects can also handle third-party applications such as Slack, Zapier, GitHub, Dropbox, and Basecamp. This way, you won’t need to put extra effort into finding compatible applications or using multiple platforms for your operations.

4. Quire

quire dashboard example

Marketed as a modern task management application for creative teams, Quire aims to simplify overwhelming projects and help professionals accomplish more tasks in shorter periods of time. This mobile-ready platform, like the others mentioned on this list, offers real-time collaboration tools, status tagging options, time tracking features, as well as smart filtering features. What sets it apart is its one-of-a-kind tree structure that lets you revamp the way you manage your tasks. It also has project sharing options and external access control features which is great for teams who regularly work with contributors and outsiders.

It is used by global brands such as Kodak and Asus as well as reputable organizations like Northwestern University and the Department of Health, so you can be sure that it is a good investment. If you think this software solution is for you, all you have to do is register for an account and you’re good to go. Quire is a free-to-use application, making it ideal for businesses who have limited financial resources.

The vendor recently added Quire Mark III, which helps you to further streamline visually your workflow using the Kanban board view. With this new view, carrying out your to-do lists is made simpler to allow you to focus more on your daily, important tasks. This also allows easier monitoring of your tasks, given its board visualization functionality. You can now also choose multiple tasks at the same time to assign them in bulk.

Why Choose Quire?

  1. Intuitive Task-Tree. Unlike other project management systems, Quire does not provide a conventional to-do list. They have an intuitive task tree designed to naturally capture how tasks evolve through their life cycle. This helps you break down big tasks and let you map out your strategy more dynamically.
  2. Smart Batch Feature. Quire has a smart batch feature that helps users move from the planning process to the implementation stage smoothly. This tool enables users to pick out listed tasks, group them into to-dos, set deadlines for each, and then delegate the tasks as you see fit. You may even reschedule and reorder the tasks should you encounter issues with them later.  
  3. Filter Options. Good task prioritization contributes greatly to the success of any project. To help you plan project goals more effectively, Quire allows you to sort your tasks according to your preferences. You may filter this information by date, assignee, team member, or custom tags, so that it is easier to identify which tasks to prioritize over others.

5. Zoho Sprints

zoho sprints dashboard example

Zoho Sprints is an online agile project management application. Created to help professionals deliver the right products in the fastest and most efficient manner possible, this clutter-free platform streamlines workflows using best-in-class features. It leverages the power of tools such as sprint creation, backlog metrics, activity tracking, and priority listing to make tackling urgent projects more simple. The system also allows its users to organize meetings and get access to analytics solutions.

Zoho Sprints offers two enterprise plans: one that costs $8.3/month and can support up to 10 users; and one priced at $2.5/user/month that can support up to 100 users. For those looking to support more than 100 users on a monthly basis, you may either use their price calculator or contact their sales team for a quote. In case, you have a small team of up to 5 members, you may use Zoho Sprints free of charge. You can sign up for a Zoho Sprints free trial here.

Zoho recently added its new project templates feature that allows users to create projects with the same workflow by simply cloning their templates, which offers considerable time savings. The software also has a new advanced and enhanced search function, which allows users to search for specific templates, projects, and work items within your work teams. Its new timesheet report enables you to monitor the least and most number of hours logged per month, types of work item, users, and sprints.

Why Choose Zoho Sprints?

  1. Flexible Scrum Board. Keeping tabs on all activities related to your projects can be a handful. With Zoho Sprints’ flexible scrum board, you can track the status of all your tasks. This makes it easier for managers to find out which items are still in the queue, already in progress, or accomplished. You may even create custom columns to suit your operations’ requirements.
  2. Complete Dashboard. Having business intelligence tools that help you turn raw data into actionable insights can do wonders for your operations. Luckily, Zoho Sprints comes with analytics features to help you do this. On top of that, the platform has a complete dashboard that provides users a quick look of your sprints and project data. By having all your key metrics compiled in one window, planning, finding patterns, and tracking projects are much faster.
  3. Meeting Scheduler While using online collaboration tools are helpful, nothing beats face-to-face meetings. With Zoho Sprints, you can set up meetings and track meetings you have conducted in the past. The platform also has a daily stand-up feature that helps team members stay on track during the course of the sprint by sending them reminders based on your meetings.

Bonus: ProjectManager

projectmanager dashboard example

ProjectManager is a feature-rich project management solution built to help professionals perform routine tasks effortlessly. Equipped with comprehensive and intuitive tools, this platform can help you create and map plans as well as simplify collaborations within your workplace. Whether you need task management solutions, advanced reporting features, time tracking options, or workload management tools, this software has your requirements covered. It also has security options that you can customize according to your operations’ needs. To help you personalize the platform, even more, this system can be integrated seamlessly with various plugins and third-party applications.

ProjectManager offers three subscription plans priced according to the number of users who will be enrolled in the system and the types of features you will need. The Team plan can hold up to 10 users and costs $20/user/month and the Business plan can support up to 20 users and costs $25/user/month. If you have a team of over 50 employees, you may choose to request a quote from their sales team. You can sign up for a ProjectManager free trial here.

Some of its recent features include a number of enhancements. For one, you can now quickly import any project file (CSV, Excel template, or Microsoft Project) to automatically occupy your online dashboard and view the actual progress of your projects. Monitoring of your projects also became a more agile process as you can view their health status in easy-to-understand colors (green, yellow, or red), allowing you quickly see their progress and do the necessary follow-up actions.

Why Choose ProjectManager?

  1. Project Planning and Scheduling Tools. No matter how large or small your project, ProjectManager has tools to help you finetune your process. It lets you plan the details of each project, separate them down into actionable tasks, as well as set due dates for your tasks. The system even has the capacity to support file attachments so that you won’t need an external file storage software for your documents.
  2. One-Click Reports. The success of your project lies in being able to determine which of your strategies are effective and which are not. To help you gauge this, ProjectManager has real-time dashboards that can be accessed whenever and wherever you want. This tool allows you to monitor time, budget, and team workload in one window. You may even print the reports out or save it in pdf format so you can easily share them with clients, stakeholders, and other interested parties.
  3. Team Management. Managing your team effectively can be difficult if you don’t know what your team members are doing at a given time. To help you see who’s available and who’s overloaded, ProjectManager has a team management tool that lets you get a color-coded overview of your team’s workload, holidays, hourly availability, and more. This feature even has integrated timesheets so you don’t need to invest in a separate platform to calculate billable hours.

Some Final Notes

The success of each project you undertake is only as good as the efficiency of your workflow. And whether you own a small startup or a large conglomerate, one of the best ways to do this is by investing in a project management software. These tools can provide you with top-of-the-line tools that help you optimize the way you plan your endeavors, meet deadlines, and more. The best part about them is that there are plenty of affordable yet scalable options to choose from. Hopefully, with our list, you were able to find a platform that can cater to the needs of your operations without compromising your company’s budget.

So how do you choose the most suitable project management tool for your business? Because each project and each team are unique, there’s really no one-size-fits-all solution. In this regard, it’s prudent to undertake some best practices before you make that final decision.

  • First, you must sum up all your needs. You must also include things such as the new features do your teams need, the area/s where your current tool had failed, etc.
  • You then search for alternatives. Begin with vendors that offer the features that you require, search online and seek the help of peers.
  • Once you have a short list, test them and examine them versus your business requirements.
  • Analyze the costs. You need to evaluate the different rates offered by the vendors, including whether what subscription plan would work for you.
  • Implement the project management solution. To efficiently do so, you must outline an implementation plan, including the need for training, etc.
  • You must evaluate the software and how your team is performing with the new project management platform. Do this periodically to allow adjustments to be made proactively in problem areas.

Are you still unsure if any of these software solutions are a good fit for your business? If so, feel free to check out our buyer’s guide to online project management platforms.

This should give you a better idea of what to look for when browsing through project management platforms.

Lastly, if you sign up for monday.com free trial here, you’ll be able to test-drive its features to ascertain if it’s the platform for you or not.

By Nestor Gilbert

Senior writer for FinancesOnline. If he is not writing about the booming SaaS and B2B industry, with special focus on developments in CRM and business intelligence software spaces, he is editing manuscripts for aspiring and veteran authors. He has compiled years of experience editing book titles and writing for popular marketing and technical publications.

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