From the assessment done of all solutions that I know about, I wanted to bring two types of solutions considering a professionals and a small businesses. The first three are basically the best task management tools today, and the seven last the best solutions available for managing tasks and projects at the same time. Emphasise that the analysis done is focused on the free versions of each tool since my personal conviction is that most professionals and SMBs these versions, if they are chosen properly, are more than enough for facilitating the control and management of tasks and projects. Been said that, I have also included information about the costs of the paid versions to complete the vision required in the case your business grows in the need of it usage.
Remember the Milk (Position 10)
This is one of the most popular task management solutions in the market, and has the following strengths and weaknesses:
- Extremely easy and friendly to use solution.
- Allows collaborative task management with unlimited users.
- Include the duration tasks.
- Provides a basic solution for documentation tasks by priority.
- Creating tasks from iPhone using Siri voice recognition. Something very interesting if you're like me, spending a lot of time in the driving, while I use to plan my day.
- Vision of progress and achievement of tasks.
- App with the same look&feel available for the most common mobile operating systems (iPhone, Android, iPad and Blackberry) apart from the Web version. It has multiple plugin and integrations that enable the management of tasks in your most common environment without requiring to open the Web application (e.g.: Evernote, Gmail, Outlook -MilkSync under paid plan-, etc.).
- Available version of the App and Web version in more than 30 languages. Including Spanish, English and Portuguese.
- The synchronisation of tasks between the Web and mobile devices is not automatic. It is performed onces every 24 hours. It is a relevant con that penalises an interesting solution and leaves behind its competitors.
- No sub tasks management. Something important when the task is complex and is highly recommended dividing it into sub tasks to properly deal with them.
- While enables collaborative task management, it does not maintain the pulse of evolution based on comments by reviewers. Something that speeds up to monitoring the progress and breakthrough as not requiring to check it through other communication channels.
- Freemium version has an optional feature, security base on SSL when information is transmitted. While it is configurable, all the rest of competitors provides it by default.
Therefore, it is a basic but powerful solution for task management with simple and friendly interface, but it ranks in last position among my top 10 free solutions recommended for professional or small business, despite all the strengths identified due to the fact of not having an automatic task synchronisation between devices. Only available in paid version.
Wunderlist (Position 9)
The free task management solution of the well-known brand has the following strengths and weaknesses:
- Interface highly intuitive, user-friendly and attractive. It is very easy to create tasks.
- Unlimited space to upload files and associate them with tasks.
- Interesting comments feature on tasks, both for internal and for collaborators so that you can to monitoring and documenting evolution.
- Dashboard with the global view of progress of each task.
- Besides from the Web version of the app., it has one of the most extensive lists of available native apps per type of device (Windows 7&8, Mac, iPhone, Android, iPad, Windows Phone, Kindle Fire, Chromebook OS) and it has plugin available for major web browsers (Chrome, Firefox and Safari).
- App available in Spanish, Portuguese and English. As in more than 30 languages.
- It does not manages projects and the ability to work collaboratively in achieving tasks is very limited.
- The free version has a limit of 25 collaborators per list, which can be very limiting over time. The same applies to the limitation of 25 sub tasks per task; although it is high volume, compared to other alternatives penalises this solution.
- It does not permit including tags and labels in order to facilitate later fast search by filters.
- While it has the ability to prioritise tasks, prioritisation is performed only in two levels. Something with significant room for improvement, as we will view latter, this is a feature widespread in competitors solutions.
- Integrated only with Dropbox and not widely adopted solutions in the market as Google Drive, Box or OneDrive to attach files to tasks.
- Attachments to task limited to 5MB per file.
That is therefore an interesting solution for basic task management for a professional or SMB that is mainly focused individual work, not customer o collaborator oriented, based on lists that requires work from multiple devices and browsers throughout your workday. Although when the number of tasks and utilisation of the solution to grow, it is likely that you will require more functionality for monitoring and managing efficiently you workload.
Basecamp (Puesto 8)
This tasks and projects management solution, despite it does not come with a free version (only a trial of two months), is it worthy of recommendation to be truly complete in functionality and due to its differential approach, simplified interface and the project management that allows visibility and its orientation to external customers. It has the following strengths and weaknesses:
- Outstanding interface and simple look&feel, friendly yet powerful and complete at glance. It incorporates a single comprehensive view management and control of each project and task.
- It allows unlimited projects managed with 12 levels of workplaces, unlimited collaborators and tasks, and managed base on priorities.
- It has a powerful ability to incorporate labels and tags as well as a really excellent search engine.
- It has a complete solution for collaborative work that, apart from the normal functionalities, it includes a wall for discussion and feedback around tasks and the ability to work collaboratively over a text document.
- It has something differential compared to other solutions. If you work in customer projects to which you have to make them visible information thereof without sharing with them certain information, this can certainly be your solution as its allows to hide selectively any detail to be shared with one or more users within a project or task.
- It has cloud storage up to 300GB with the ability to upload files up to 10GB from your hard drive.
- It has app available, in addition to its Web version, on major mobile platforms (iPhone, Android and iPad).
- No sub task management.
- Lack of task dependency management.
- No control over time to complete tasks and projects
- Absence of native integration with leading storage and collaboration like Dropbox, Box, Google Drive, OneDrive type, etc.
- Today is only available in English.
While it is the first solution that I come to recommend that manages not only tasks but also projects, it ranks last among project managers, despite it interesting approach and simplicity of use, due to the remarkable lack of a free version.
Todoist (Position 7)
This is the second solution I recommend that goes beyond basic management tasks, allowing project management. It has the following strengths and weaknesses under the free version:
- Manages collaboratively tasks and projects, including phases, sub tasks and priorities. While all of this features are cap limited, the limits are high enough: 80 projects (active), 5 collaborators per project, 50 tasks per project with 150 sub tasks each one.
- Strong solution from the standpoint of easiness and friendly usage. The interface is very attractive and incorporates a dashboard view for tasks and projects.
- It has powerful plugin for incorporating tasks and manage projects without leaving your email client (Outlook, Gmail, Mozilla Thunderbird or Postbox) Something tremendously productive and efficient.
- It allows incorporating comment threads collaboratively at project or task level.
- Apart of the Web version, it has one of the largest list of available apps and plugin for all types of devices and operating systems (Android, iPhone, iPad, Gmail, Chrome, Firefox, Outlook, Thunderbird, Mac, Windows and Kindle).
- The solution is available in more than 20 languages. Including Spanish, English and Portuguese.
- It does not allow management dependences between task.
- it has not allow the control over time spent on each task.
- It does not permit including attachment files to task and projects. While it is recommended, I must say this is not essential as there is an alternative that becomes a best practice to be recommended. You can include a hyperlink to the document from a file, sync and share cloud provider. I recommend it as it allow us the centralised and maximum control over the file, and total guarantee that last version of the document is used.
- No possibility to to hide unwanted information selectively, for customer and collaborators.
While this solution does not have the capabilities that the following project management tools brings, it is highly recommended for professionals and small businesses that require managing small projects, with small groups of collaborators who wish not to have to be jumping from one applications on other along the day. The strength identified of having a plugin so well built for Outlook, Gmail, configures Todoist as an excellent choice.
Azeendo (Position 6)
We are about halfway of the ranking table of recommend solutions, and recommending a solution is becoming more and more a matter of nuances that matter to the end user. Azendoo has the following strengths and weaknesses under freemium version:
- Complete tasks and projects management that include unlimited projects, unlimited collaborators and unlimited sub tasks.
- It has the capacity to prioritize tasks as well as to include tags and lables to allow further fast effective searches.
- It allows certainly an attractive and unified control over progress of tasks and projects on a simple.
- It comes with 10 GB of cloud storage for uploading files up to 200MB, with integration with leading file, sync and share cloud vendors (Google Drive, Dropbox and Box).
- Available apps, apart from the Web version, for main PC platforms (Windows and Mac), Tablet and Smartphone (iPhone, iPad and Android).
- It has versions in 40 languages. Including Spanish, English and Portuguese (Brazilian and Portugal Portuguese).
- Interesting business model for paid solution, if growth is required for user administration and enhacanced functionalities.
- It lacks of task dependencies management
- No plugin available for major platforms email (Outlook, Gmail, Apple Mail, etc.) and only plugin available for Chrome browser.
- It does not allow the control of time spent on each task and project for re charge the cost or assignment to a client and / or project, for instance.
- No capacity to selectively hide information over tasks and / or projects to certain customers or collaborators.
Therefore, Azendoo is configured as an excellent freemium solution for managing tasks and projects collaboratively with features and functionalities that contribute to the professional and small business with a powerful tool for managing business at a very low cost.
Asana (Position 5)
The well-known tasks and projects management solution Asana are located in the middle of the ranking table of my recommendations due to the following strengths and weaknesses in their free solution:
- Powerful solution for collaborative tasks and projects management, with unlimited tasks and sub tasks to be handled.
- Extremely attractive and simple interface. Allows viewing and controlling tasks and project progress at first view.
- It comes with 2GB of storage space in the cloud to add files to tasks and projects. With a maximum limit per file of 100MB and integration with leading cloud providers of file, sync and share (Dropbox, Google Drive and Box).
- Apart of Web version, it has native app for major mobile platforms (iPhone, iPad and Android).
- Available in more than 40 languages. Including Spanish, English and Portuguese.
- Collaborators under freemium version limited to 15.
- Only three levels of projects or workspaces.
- No dependencies management between tasks.
- No control of time dedicated to each task; necessary for monitoring and allocation of costs and resources to projects, re charge it, etc.
- No capacity to hide information selectively over tasks or projects to clients or collaborators in the free version.
- It lacks of extensions for all major mail platforms (Outlook, Gmail, Apple Mail, etc.) that allow users to manage task and project from their mail client without having to switch from on screen to the other. Just Chrome browser plugin available.
- Compared to other apps presented below, its paid business model for growing needs it heavily penalising this solution.
Asana is, therefore, a safe and highly recommended alternative for professional setting or SMEs with medium or high requirements of managing tasks and projects. It is certainly one of the most recognised and adopted solutions in this market, being a complete and attractive solution considering functionality / cost. But we shall say that there are solutions that compete face to face with it, as you can view below.
Podio (Position 4)
Tasks and projects management solution from the company Citrix, forming part of its productivity, collaboration and communication cloud suite, highlighted by the following strengths and weaknesses under the free version:
- Comprehensive and collaborative tasks and projects solution that can handle unlimited projects and tasks. Also sub projects or workspaces and sub tasks are unlimited.
- It allows managing project phases and tasks based on priorities.
- Includes capacity to include tags on task in order to facilitate later quick and effective searches based on filters.
- Ability to configure progress views on tasks and projects that facilitate the user full control of its workload.
- It incorporates, at task and project level, the capacity to add notes and comments collaboratively.
- Something differential is that it allows schedule, notes taking of meetings within the same tool itself.
- It comes with unlimited storage space in the cloud. With file limit size of to 100MB per file, and integration with the most extensive list of cloud file, sync and share vendors (Box, Google Drive, Evernote, ShareFile, OneDrive, SugarSync or Dropbox).
- It has, apart from the Web version, with native app versions for Android, iPhone and iPad.
- Native integration with the suite of productivity, collaboration and communication solutions from Citrix (e.g. GotoMeeting -Web Meeting, ShareFile -Storage and Collaboration, etc.).
- It is available in 12 languages, including Spanish, English and Portuguese (from Brazil and Portugal).
- Attractive and affordable paid business model in case of requiring to increase number of subscription managed under the same company.
- Free version limited to 5 collaborators only.
- No possibility to define task dependencies
- No control over time spent on each task and project.
- it lacks of extensions for major mail platforms (Outlook, Gmail, Apple Mail, etc.). Just Chrome browser plugin available.
Podio, as you can view, is a simple and friendly solution that covers with flying colors every need a professional or small business may require on tasks and project management. It is highly recommended for professional or SMB by the fact that it coexists natively with the rest of the productivity, collaboration and communication tools of Citrix and due to the highly interesting economic model if you need to grow.
Producteev (Position 3)
As recommended in third place, powerful solution for managing tasks and projects under a freemium version, I definitely recommended Producteev, from Jive Company. Recognised by Gartner as a leader in social collaboration tools in its famous Magic Quadrant in 2014 (source: Gartner. “Magic Quadrant for Social Software in the Workplace”. 3 de septiembre, 2014). Until recently, I have been working with this free version for more than a year, not without having intensely tested other alternative solutions in complex projects with collaborators and customers and the results have been outstanding list of strengths and weaknesses of this solution under the free version:
- Complete solution for collaborative tasks and projects management that allows unlimited managing projects, tasks, sub tasks, collaborators, task assignments, etc.
- Comprehensive and simple interface that facilitates at first view and few click to track all details.
- Capacity to prioritise tasks and adding tags for later agile search when achieving large volume of task managed.
- It allows to incorporate comments and notes collaboratively to every task and project.
- Including files associated to tasks and projects loaded from file, sync and share cloud services with 15MB per file of maximum weight and with native integration with Dropbox and Box services.
- It has versions for iPhone, Android, iPad and Mac, complimenting the web version.
- No dependencies assignment between tasks or monitoring the time consumed to complete workload.
- It lacks of option to hide task information selectively to customers and collaborators.
- I was not able, up to date, to confirm with provider the amount of cloud space included under the free version to attach files to task and projects.
- Solution only available today in English.
- High cost if you want to incorporate user management and Outlook plug; Only available under paid version.
Despite the apparent weaknesses listed, the way Producteev solves tasks and projects management is really effective. The conjunction of allowing unlimited management of all main fundamental and advanced features and under a freem model is certainly an excellent solution to be recommend.
Trello (Position 2)
The race for the last two positions of the podium is becoming even more complicated. Further details and adequacy of features to specific requirements to fit with profesional and SMB needs should make the decision on one solution against the other. In my opinion, Trello would rise to second place by having the following strengths and weaknesses:
- Very simple and friendly solution yet very complete: projects, tasks, sub projects or workspaces, collaborators and task assignments, all of them, unlimited.
- Unlimited cloud space to attachment of file to task or project from file, sync and share main cloud service (Google Drive, Dropbox, Box and OneDrive). Up to 10MB of file.
- Enables prioritisation and adding tags on task. It also provides fast view of the progress of each task and project.
- Very interesting and powerful way to collaboratively incorporate comments and notes to each task or project.
- Apart from the Web versions, it has native app for Android, iPhone, iPad, Windows 8 and Kindle Fire platforms.
- Easy and affordable paid business model to facilitate the growth in subscribers managed by company, despite mainly feature is included under the free version.
- Not allowed to set sub projects or task dependency. Also control the time consumed to finalised activities.
- No way to hide information shared with customers and collaborators selectively.
- Only English version available today.
- • No plugin for Outlook, Gmail, Apple Mail, etc. email platforms. Also no plugin for major browsers (Explorer, Chrome, Firefox, Safari, etc.). There is only the omnipresent capacity of incorporating shortcut to an app in Outlook or integrate with the agenda thanks to it supported iCanlendar.
Despite these shortcomings, since the solution is unlimited for the most important functionalities required for management of tasks and projects in a collaborative way, and due to paid business model that allows affordable escalation in subscription managed by the company, Trello is configured as the second best alternative I recommend strongly.
Wrike (Position 1)
Definitely my recommendation for professionals and small businesses, wanting to perform an advanced, professional, organised, controlled and effective tasks and projects management collaboratively with third parties, would be Wrike. The strengths and weaknesses of this solution on its free version are summarised as follows:
- Unlimited Project, tasks, collaborators to be managed.
- It allows prioritised task and assigning dependencies between them.
- Sub task and 2 levels of sub project included in the free version.
- Splitting projects into phases.
- Monitoring duration of tasks and projects.
- Capacity to include tags on task for later agile searches.
- Incorporates collaborative comments on task and project.
- Capacity to collaborative editing text document.
- Hiding selectively information in order to share a project with customers is doable.
- You can upload files to a task or project up to 500MB per file, with native integration with Google Drive, Dropbox and Box.
- Apart from the Web version, also offers native application for iPhone, Android and iPad. It also has plugin for Outlook.
- It has not only the common SSL security feature for securing the information transmitted between your browser and provider platform, but also AES 256 encryption for files uploaded to the cloud.
- The solution is available in 13 languages. Among them Spanish, English and Portuguese.
- Business model that scales affordably well when business needs requires user management and extra storage space in the cloud.
- It does not allow management meetings as Podio allows. But you can make a pseudo management thereof. There are tricks and best practices that I will be sharing in future post.
- Up until now, I have been unable to verify with the provider whats is the cloud storage space included in the freemium version.
|VERSION GRATUITA||Wrike||Trello||Producteev||Podio||asana||Azendoo||ToDoist||Basecamp||Wunderlist||Remember the milk
|Collaborators/external users||Unlimited||Unlimited||Unlimited||Up to 5 collaborators||Up to 15 collaborators||Unlimited||1 user||60 trial days for free
|Project levels/ workspaces||2 leveles||Unlimited||Unlimited||Unlimited||3 levels||1 level||80 prjects/3 levels||12 levels||No||No|
|Task asignement||Unlimited||Unlimited||Unlimited||Unlimited||Unlimited||Limited||50 tasks per project||Unlimited||Limited||Unlimited|
|Sub task management||Yes*****||Yes*****||Yes***||Yes***||Yes***||Yes*****||Yes***
150 per project
Up to 25 per task
|Time consumed on tasks/ projects||Yes*****||No||No||No||No||No||No||No||No||No|
|Project phases management||Yes*****||No||Yes***||Yes***||Yes***||Yes**||Yes*||Yes*||No||No|
|Tags /labels management||Yes*****||Yes*****||Yes*****||Yes*****||Yes***||Yes**||Yes**||Yes****||No||No|
|Views and filters management||Yes*****||Yes****||Yes*****||Yes****||Yes*****||Yes*****||Yes*****||Yes***||No||Yes|
|Via voice task dictation (Siri)||No||No||No||No||No||No||No||No||No||Yes|
|Project wall/ Comments||Yes*****||Yes*****||Yes*****||Yes*****||Yes*****||Yes*****||Yes**||Yes*****||Yes***||No|
|Collaborative text document||Yes*****||No||No||No||No||No||No||Yes*****||No||No|
GoogleDrive, Dropbox, Box
up to 500MB per file
Google Drive, Dropbox, Box, or OneDrive
up to 10MB per file
Up to 15MB per file
Google Drive,Evernote, ShareFile,Onedrive,
SugarSync or Dropbox
Up to 100MB per file
Dropbox, Google Drive, Box
Up to 100MB per file
Google Drive, Dropbox, Box
Up to 200MB per file
|No on free version
(in paid v. Google Drive & Dropbox)
Up to 10GB per file
Up to 5 MB per file
Up tp 25 per list
|Customer management / hide information||Yes*****||No||No||No||No||No||No||Yes*****||No||No|
|company user management||Yes*****||No||Yes*****||Yes*****||Yes*****||No||Yes*||Yes*****||No||No|
|Task progress view||Yes*****||Yes*****||Yes***||Yes****||Yes***||Yes*****||Yes*****||Yes*****||Yes**||Yes**|
|Project breakthrough view||Yes*****||Yes*||Yes***||Yes**||Yes***||Yes***||Yes***||Yes**||No||No|
iPhone, Android, iPad, & Web
Web, Android, iPhone,
iPad, Windows 8, Kinde Fire
iPhone, Android, iPad, Mac & Web
Android, iPhone, iPad
iPhone, Android, iPad & Web
Windows, Mac, iPhone, Android, iPad, & Web
|Android, iPhone, iPad, Gmail, Chrome, Firefox, Outlook, Thunderbird, Mac, Windows, Kindle & Web||Yes*****
iPhone, Android, iPad & Web
Windows 7&8, Mac,
iPhone, Android, iPad, Windows Phone, Kindle Fire, Chromebook & Web
iPhone, Android, iPad, Blackberry & Web
(español, inglés y portugues)
|English||English||12 languages (Spanish, English and Portuguese)||40 languages
(Spanish, English and Portuguese)
(Spanish, English and Portuguese)
(Spanish, English and Portuguese)
(Spanish, English and Portuguese)
(Spanish, English and Portuguese)
|Security||SSL in transference
AES 256 encryption for files uploaded
|Simplicity / usability||*****||****||***||****||****||****||*****||*****||*****||*****|
Outlook, Gmail, PostBox, Thunderbird
Chrome, Firefox, Safari
|Free Support||Web, Knowledge base,
|Web, FAQs, ticket/e-mail
response in 24 hrs
|Web, FAQs, Community, Twitter, Ticket/e-mail||Web, FAQs,
|Web, FAQs, ticket/email &
|Web, ticket/e-mail||Web, FAQs,
Forum, ticket/e-mail, Twitter, Facebook & Google
|PAID VERSION||Wrike||Trello||Producteev||Podio||asana||Azendoo||ToDoist||Basecamp||Remember the milk||Wunderlist|
|Users||Prof. Plan: 5 users per 49$/m
15 users 99$/u&m
|Gold Plan: 5$/u&m (attachment up to 250MB)
Biz Class Plan: 5$/u&m (idem Gold but Sup adm features)
|Unlimited 99$/u&m||Basic Plan: 9$/u&m
Plus Plan: 14$/u&m (idem+unlimited workflows)
Premium Plan: 24$/u&m (idem+premium support)
|15 users 63$/m
25 users 125$/m
|Premium Plan: 7$/m
Biz Plan: 9$/m&u (idem but sup adm features)
(auto sync across platforms, uploadfiles, 200 task per proj., 200 proj., tags&labels, reminders, backup, etc)
|Plan A: Unlimited 25$/m
Plan B: Unlimited 50$/m
Unlimited Plan: 150$/m
|Plan Pro: 1 user 4,99$/m
Plan Biz: 4,99$/m per user(adm features)
|25$ año por usuario
(Instant sync across devices, reminders, scorecards)
|Levels of project||Unlimited||Unlimited||Unlimited||Unlimited||Unlimited||Unlimited||200||Plan A:12 levels
Plan B: 40 levels
|Cloud Storage||Prof. Plan: 5GB
20MB per file
|Plan A: 3GB
Plan B: 15GB
Unlimited Plan: 100GB