Trying to manage a project without a project management tool is similar to chaos holding a party. Project Management tools bring a definite amount of integration between different project work groups and also help in scheduling, cost control and budget management, resource allocation, collaboration, communication, quality management and documentation or administration. The project management tools aim to keep the project risks very low and bring down the costs significantly. Project Management is the key when we start up a business or a new venture. Here we look at some of the best project management tools for businesses which are free.
Trello is a web based project management tool which uses the kanban paradigm (move the task from left to right as it progresses) for managing projects. Projects are represented by boards, under which you can make lists (tasks); the lists contain cards which can be assigned to project members. The cards can be dragged and dropped as the project progresses.
Trello allows you to invite as many people to your board, all for free. It also comes with cool features like Power Ups, where a user can add additional features like development integration if needed without making the tool complex. It also allows access from any device through their mobile apps. Trello supports iPhone, iPad, Android mobiles, tablets and Kindle Fire tablets. Trello offers a business class paid service also.
GanttProject is an open source project management and scheduling software that runs under the Windows, Linux and Mac OS X operating systems. GanttProject is a desktop software and can be operated offline. It allows you to create a structured schedule for your project.
Basic project management functions like Gantt chart are used for project scheduling. This system can generate Gantt charts (for project scheduling), PERT charts, produce reports in HTML and PDF formats and resource management using resource load charts. GanttProject is free for any purposes including commercial use.
Asana is a web based software-as-a-service used in improving project collaboration. Founded by Facebook co-founder Dustin Moskovitz in 2008, it focuses on allowing users to manage project and tasks without the use of email. Asana’s task management system works best for teams which seek real time interaction. Asana introduced a feature called Inbox which notifies about updates, comments, changes in due date, and other statuses which are often emailed.
Teams can create workspaces, and add tasks to it. Users can add notes, comments, attachments, and tags in each task. They can follow projects and tasks and, when the state of a project or task change followers are updated in their Inbox. Asana also allows integration with other tools and is available for android and iOS.
FreedCamp is a web based project management and organization tool which uses cloud computing. It works well as a free tool when you are starting a business. It costs very little to build on with multiple paid for add-ons enabling new features as you go. The basic applications allow users to assign tasks to people, set milestones, schedule calendar events, track time spent on tasks and use discussion boards.
FreedCamp offers unlimited users and unlimited projects for lifetime with 200 MB of storage. There is no mobile app, but FreedCamp has optimized their website for mobile use.
Jira is popular project management software that is designed to help users capture, assign and set priorities to their work. Jira is a leadingsoftware development app used by agile teams. Users can create issues, plan sprints and assign tasks to project team members. It is useful in planning, tracking and releasing effective softwares.
Jira also offers real time visual data reports to analyse the performance and allows integration with 800+ add-ons and plug ins in the Atlassian marketplace and other tools which you already use. Jira can also be accessed on iPhones through the Jira app.
Jira is free for use by official organizations that are non-profit, non-academic, non-commercial, non-governmental, non-political, charities, and open-source projects, but not governmental, academic or religious organizations.
This list is far from complete. There are other free project management tools like Orange Scrum, MeisterTask, Bitrix24, Zoho Projects, Harvest, Producteev, 2-Plan Team, BamBam! and Redmine which you could try for your business. Most of them providing basic versions with premium upgrades to integrate as the business develop.