Project Management Software Reviews

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  • Teamwork Projects Review

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    Overview: The visionaries responsible for Teamwork.com, Peter Coppinger & Daniel Mackey, began their collaboration almost 15 years ago. Digital Crew, the company they founded together, specialized at that time only in the creation of websites, intranets and custom web-based solutions. However, the Ireland-based business quickly developed an international reputation for excellence, and in early 2007, […]

  • NetSuite ERP and SRP Review

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    Highlights: Enterprise business management software Robust features Cloud-based Strong user permissions 350 integrations Overview: Some small businesses can get by with basic bookkeeping tools, but others have long outgrown simple accounting software programs and need to bring in the big guns. That’s where NetSuite comes in. NetSuite is the whole business package, designed specifically for […]

  • Smartsheet Review

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    Overview: Smartsheet is a spreadsheet-based program that boasts several million users. As project management software goes, Smartsheet is fairly unusual, mainly because it was designed for so much more than project management. Smartsheet can be used like any other spreadsheet application, but it offers a lot of other interesting features that set it apart from […]

  • Wrike Review

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    Overview: When 8000 corporations use your product, it is safe to say you have met with unmodified success. When those companies include tech giants like Paypal and HTC, that success is even less in doubt. But for me, what makes Wrike’s success certain are the number of people who recommend it. It is easy for a […]

  • ProWorkflow Review

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    Overview: ProWorkflow, a New Zealand-born project management software, was originally intended by founder Julian Stone to serve as “a solution for internal workflow and communication needs.” However, it was so successful after its launch in 2002 that it was soon released to a wider array of customers and eventually made it onto the general market. […]

  • Genius Project Review

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    Overview: Genius Project, the flagship product of Genius Inside, was originally created “to address a need for project management software for the IBM marketplace.” According to the company’s website: Genius Project is not only a powerful project management software but also provides customers with the necessary expertise in project management best practices…Genius Project’s mission is […]

  • iMeet Central Review

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    Overview: Note: iMeet Central was known as Central Desktop SocialBridge until 2014 when the company was acquired by PGi. The software has subsequently been overhauled and rebranded. iMeet Central aims to be your one-stop-shop for collaboration. With stated goals of increasing conversation and discussion in the workplace, it claims to “democratize” the workplace, bringing employees […]

  • Redbooth Review

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    Overview: Redbooth began life in 2008 as Teambox, a simple, Barcelona-based project management program geared towards smaller organizations. After six years of relative success, the company underwent a major rebranding in January of 2014. According to the Redbooth website: Shortly after passing the 650,000 users mark we launched Redbooth and renamed the company. The new version had […]

  • Zoho Projects Review

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    Overview: Zoho Corporation, creator of Zoho Projects and a suite of other online office management software, is a privately-held company based out of Chennai, India. When it was originally founded in 1996, the company went by the name AdventNet, Inc. It was renamed in 2009 after the success of Zoho Office Suite. Zoho Corporation has […]

  • Comindware Project Review

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    Note: Comindware Project used to be a stand-alone product, but has now ostensibly been rolled into a larger program, Comindware Business Application Platform. We don’t know much about the new platform (as you will see if you read our review of it here) and were not allowed to test it. The company has also refused […]

What Is Project Management Software?

That’s a good question! And the answer is not as simple as you might think. The term ‘project management software’ could refer to anything from a rudimentary task manager to a complex tool with scheduling algorithms, workflow management, and highly sophisticated budgeting features.

At its most basic level, project management software helps you organize your work into discrete chunks, track time, and store files. These days, project management tools are mostly SaaS (software as a service)—that means they operate on a monthly subscription system and are accessible via the cloud.

How Can Project Management Software Benefit My Business?

Another good question! The answer? So many ways. More than I can easily enumerate here, actually. But let’s hit on two of the key ways that project management software can benefit businesses.

Project Management Tools Help You Communicate More Effectively

The modern workplace is crazy. With the advent and increased popularity of email, video conferencing, instant messaging, and cheap long-distance phone calls, the world has never had so many ways to be connected. But increased connectivity comes with increased chaos, and many businesses are still trying to operate with one foot in the old world and one foot in the new. If you’re relying on an unholy mixture of in-person meetings and Go-to-Meeting, sticky note memos and Outlook messages, phone calls and Skype calls, screen sharing and cubicle drop-bys, you’re doing it wrong. The more methods you use to communicate, the more information is going to fall through the cracks.

Project management software can help you do the unthinkable: streamline communication, simplify the exchange of information, and preserve a written record of memos and conversations. When all your means of communication come from one source—your project management solution—things will seem to magically fall into place. Your coworkers can’t pass the buck if there’s a smoking gun that shows the exact minute they agreed to take on a project. Likewise, you won’t have to experience the exquisite frustration of not knowing whether your email has been opened yet. Most project management tools offer email integration, live chat, and myriad other features that boost connectivity and communication between you and the rest of your office.

Project Management Software Organizes Work For You

Most of us don’t have the luxury of a personal assistant. At work, we’re expected to create our own schedules, track our own progress on tasks, and follow through on projects without being reminded. But that can be a big ask for most people, who are also responsible for remembering a host of other things (like when the milk expires, and which kids need to be picked up from which sporting event). Enter project management software, the modern business person’s best friend.

Project management tools, at their most basic level, provide a way to organize your work life. This type of software allows you to create tasks and task lists, assign projects to yourself or co-workers, store files in places they cannot get lost, and get frequent notifications about the progress and status of your workload. In other words, it allows you to free your brain of tedious details and focus on the task at hand.

Common Features to Looks For When Choosing Project Management Software

Not all software is created equal. However, there are certain features that are common to most project management tools:

  • Email integration
  • File storage
  • File management
  • Discussion channels
  • Instant messaging
  • Project creation
  • Task creation
  • Task dependencies
  • Contact management
  • Gantt charts
  • Notifications
  • User permissions

Higher-level project management software may also include the following, more advanced features:

  • Project budgets
  • Quotes and invoices
  • Automated scheduling
  • Risk/issue management
  • Iterations
  • Automated workflow
  • Video conferencing
  • Screen sharing
  • File editing
  • Image editing

How Much Will It Cost?

Not surprisingly, the answer to this question depends entirely on how many functions you need. Simple task management programs are often free for one user and can start as low as $5/month for more than one user. A typical mid-range SaaS project management tool might run anywhere from $19-$199/month, while locally-installed, enterprise level software suites can cost tens of thousands of dollars.

The price you pay will depend largely on what kind of subscription system your software vendor employs. Licensed, on-premise software comes at a hefty, usually one-time cost. But in general, the cloud-based project management software industry uses a few different pricing models:

  • Cost/person: In this model, the software’s features are included at every level and subscriptions are based on how many users you have in your organization.
  • Cost/feature: This model usually starts with a basic feature set and raises the price of the software as more features are added.

Often, these models are combined in some way. For example, if your organization has 1-10 people, you should be able to choose which plan you want to use. However, larger businesses may be forced to pay for plans that include more features. In fact, some vendors insist that businesses of 100 people or more use only the most premium plans.

There may also be additional costs to keep in mind. Some project management software companies charge extra for support services or for initial training and implementation. Others may charge yearly licensing fees, or impose fees for access to updates. As a rule, we encourage our readers to avoid software vendors that gouge their users for technical support or updates.

Choosing Specific Project Management Software

Now that you have some idea of what project management software brings to the table, which features to look for, and how much a system might cost, it’s time to get specific. At Merchant Maverick, we’ve spent countless hours researching and testing the best project management software programs on the market. Read our comprehensive reviews for more information, or check out this handy comparison table if you want a quick overview of the industry in general.

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