Agile is everyone’s favorite project management and delivery buzzword, but what agile tools can you use to help successfully run an agile project? In this agile tools comparison article, we’re going to explore some of our favorite agile development tools and platforms for managing agile projects.
Quickly Compare & Evaluate The Best Agile Tools
The 10 Best Agile Tools Overviews
Everyone loves the idea of “being agile”, but how do you actually apply agile in your agency? And how do you make sure your toolset actually supports your intended processes and methods?
There are an incredible number of agile tool options. Perhaps too many. Everyone likes to manage their projects slightly differently so it’s important to try some tools to find what works for you.
Although there are dozens of great agile PM tools out there, here’s a detailed review of each agile project management tool that made it onto our list:
1. monday.com – Best agile planning tool
monday.com is a flexible tool that provides a structure that can easily be configured to suit teams working to agile and various hybrid methodologies. Because they’ve done away with some of the extra trimmings of typical PM tools, monday.com is a great choice for teams who want a simple, unobstructed focus on the work that needs to be done.
When using this tool, you put tasks on a board, and then you add in the steps you’ll need to take to get it done. It’s vaguely similar to a spreadsheet—but a much nicer-looking one that comes with multiple views (Kanban board, Gantt-style charts, list views) alerts, notifications, assignees, automated processes, and a lot more. Other features include a customizable task board for managing task status, assignee, due date, etc.
You can track your agile projects with monday.com’s project dashboards that collect data from multiple boards to easily see work in progress. You’ll also find easy file sharing and communication features such as mentions, comments, and hashtags.
Overall, this is an adaptable, easy-to-learn tool with a strong emphasis on customer service (the company’s customer support is available 24/7 by phone or email).
monday.com integrations include Slack, Google Drive, Gmail, Google Calendar, Jira, GitHub, Trello, Dropbox, Typeform, and many more that are accessible via Zapier.
monday.com pricing starts at $17/month for two users.
- Huge focus on collaboration
- Long list of supported integrations
- Spreadsheet-style pulses for task progress
- Complex pricing rubric
- Focus goes beyond Agile only
2. Hive – Agile project management tool with flexible views including Kanban
Hive is a project management tool and collaboration platform that powers companies like Starbucks, Google, Comcast, and Toyota. It’s marketed as a tool for fast-moving teams and includes a feature set that’s great for agile agencies, startups, operations, and marketing teams, among others.
Overall, this tool is well-laid out, well-rounded, and always adding useful new features for agile teams. Its flexible project views, which include Kanban, Gantt, portfolio, calendar and table view, allow you to apply agile methodologies to your workflow and allow your teams to adapt to whatever hybrid methodology works best at that time.
Hive also has some useful reporting features that use AI analytics—not just for tracking work in progress but also for tracking time, forecasting resources, and for viewing your key stats on a portfolio level. The interactive dashboards are a great feature of this tool.
One of the top selling points of this tool is its integrations. Hive has a large library of native integrations, including many standard tools like Salesforce, Slack, Microsoft Teams, OneDrive, Zoom, DropBox. It also offers one of the first full email integrations in any project management tool, which means you can send and receive Gmail and Outlook messages from the Hive app. It also has an integration with Jira, which is something a lot of other agile-style tools do not have.
The tool costs $12/user/month when billed annually.
- Flexible project layouts
- Native email & messaging
- Has infinite subtasks
- Add external users without paying for a seat
- Lack of a desktop app or an add-on
- Calendar tools are pretty basic
- Can’t view notes on the mobile app
3. Smartsheet – Best agile workflow tool
Smartsheet is an entire online project management suite, but in the suite, they also offer some customizable features for agile teams. You start by setting up a pre-built Kanban sheet template, to which you can import any existing kanban board data from Trello, Microsoft Excel, or Microsoft Project.
Smartsheet helps you organize projects, grids, calendars, dashboards, portals, forms, and more all from a unified control center. They have pre-built Gantt chart templates with customizable fonts and colors, “% Complete” and “Assigned To” columns, and more.
A useful feature of Smartsheet’s Kanban tool is that you can switch between traditional, grid, Gantt, and calendar views, helping you to see tasks in different ways. It offers all the Kanban essentials like attachments, custom fields, and searching for or filtering cards based on different criteria.
Smartsheet offers most of the integrations you’d need in a Kanban tool: integrations include Microsoft and Google apps, as well as development essentials like Jira, and useful business apps like Salesforce, ServiceNow, Slack, Box, and Tableau. The platform is extensible through a REST API and webhooks.
Smartsheet costs from $14/user/month and offers a 30-day trial.
- Easy to pull data from multiple sources
- Great alternative to Excel spreadsheets
- Well-communicated prepared-by-client (PBC) requests
- Advanced training recommended
- Could use more formatting options for data columns
- Max. number of lines may be insufficient for complex projects
4. Wrike – Best for scaling organizations
Wrike is an award-winning collection of agile tools for project management suitable for teams of five or more. This highly configurable agile project management software allows users to customize workflows, dashboards, and reports.
Wrike’s simple interface enables users to switch between Kanban boards, interactive drag-and-drop Gantt charts, and workload views to visualize priorities. Wrike features a number of easy-to-use agile templates, backlog management functionalities, spaces for collaboration and feedback, and agile reporting and analytics. Other features include agile folder organization and automated task management.
Wrike’s features can be configured for each individual team’s needs, and the tool also offers a variety of different yet specific solutions depending on the type of team or organization, including solutions for marketing teams and professional service teams.
The software offers more than 400 pre-built native integrations, including popular file management software from Microsoft, Google, and Dropbox, along with sales and marketing software from Salesforce and Marketo.
Pricing for Wrike starts at $9.80/user/month. There are four different price points, including a free version and plans which offer the ability to invite free external collaborators to a paid account.
- Holistic, comprehensive task modeling
- Loads of configurable features
- Community feedback voting for roadmap features
- Not tailored for small organizations
- Commenting system could be better
5. Clarizen – Best agile tool for hybrid methodologies
Clarizen is an enterprise-grade professional service automation software solution, designed to speed up the way you do business – integrating work, content, and process tightly together to enable more efficient working. Clarizen’s real focus is making projects happen faster with timesaving workflows. Clarizen is a great project management tool if you have lots of repeatable projects that require repeatable processes as workflow automation is pretty flexible and powerful.
It covers off the PPM basics of task lists, schedules, docs and files, communications and reporting without breaking a sweat. Clarizen’s project planning tools are a powerful mix of functionality across the planning, executing and controlling of a project. Within planning are project workflows, a full-featured resource, schedule, and task planning tools, with project and portfolio optimization so that you can easily and quickly align projects to business objectives.
For project execution, Clarizen enables everyone on the team to be aligned with a dashboard that enables teams to work better together and see how their contribution fits into the bigger picture – from the project timeline and milestones to budget, project discussions, and sharing documents.
Instead of being obligated to make educated guesses, project managers can make accurate data-based decisions that align project selection and investment with big picture priorities. Changing tasks and schedules takes a few clicks, and project managers can run hypothetical scenarios to proactively see the impact of resource changes before they go live, and alert end users via their personal dashboard of any changes to their workload. Because resource scheduling is built-in, Clarizen delivers real-time insights into all available resources, schedules, and tasks.
Clarizen has some really powerful integration options out the box that is worth considering if you have other business-critical systems already in place. You can combine the power of Clarizen with other enterprise tools including Jira, SharePoint, Tableau, Salesforce, and Intaact, among others with a subscription to an App integration so you don’t have to play around with the API’s yourself. As well as the enterprise tool integrations possible, Clarizen has an App marketplace to add additional functionality into the system including helpful add-ons like active directory sync, Excel reporting integration, and priority automation – many of which are free.
Clarizen offers a free trial and costs from $60/user/month.
- Great graphical workflow editor
- Completely customizable fields and panels
- Strong focus on collaboration
- Variety of ways to customise PM workflows
- Higher learning curve
- Could use better issue tracking
- Only has 3 support mailboxes
6. Taiga – Best agile tool for user experience and interface
Taiga has a rich and complete feature set with extensive customization options, at the same time it is very simple to start with through its intuitive user interface.
Whether your team uses Scrum, Kanban, Scrumban or just wants to track issues, Taiga is an ideal agile project management tool. Its features include an intuitive backlog and sprint planning, a sprint board with swim-lanes per user story and a sprint dashboard with a burndown chart, fully customizable Kanban boards with WIP limits, Epics, subtasks, issue tracking, and a Wiki function.
Furthermore, you can specify different team roles, estimate story points per role and move unfinished user stories to other sprints.
The project timeline and projects dashboard provide an easy overview of activities while the sprint and team performance dashboards are focused on closed tasks, points from completed user stories and specific elements like issues reported and Wiki pages edited. There is also a unique estimation game to determine the (relative) size of different user stories.
What makes it stand out is the intuitive user interface. This makes Taiga particularly useful for multi-functional teams and/or client teams. The zoom function for the Kanban and Sprint boards allows you to easily move from overview to detail view and back and the tool is available in over 30 languages.
Integrations with Slack, Hipchat, GitHub, Gitlab, Mattermost are pre-configured. A lot more integrations are possible through easy to configure webhooks and an extensive API set. If you are currently working with Trello, Asana, Jira 7 or Github, you can seamlessly import your project data.
Taiga costs from $7/user/month for unlimited private projects. They offer a 30-day free trial (no credit card required).
- Easily create cards and track progress
- Options for adding custom user inputs
- Saves time by easily replicating past workflows
- Can be challenging to categorize and link items
- Can’t see history of item with documented changes
- Strongly oriented towards ticket processing
7. Forecast – Best agile tool for scrum methodologies
Forecast is perfect for agile teams, as it ensures optimal project deliveries through an adaptive work process and workflow automation to save project managers time and maintain visibility on projects, tasks, and milestones.
The platform uses AI to help make estimates, so you can effectively plan for a more accurate view of your sprint capacity and monitor velocity. Everything is in one place so you can reduce the amount of rework and improve efficiency while grooming the backlog, planning the sprint, tracking progress and velocity, and discerning where processes can be improved.
Forecast also integrates with the tools your developers love, such as Azure DevOps, GitHub, GitLab, as well as two-way sync with Jira, so you can collaborate with ease and deliver value faster.
Forecast is currently used in 40+ countries worldwide, by agencies, consulting companies, and enterprises. Paid plans start at $29/user/month. Forecast has a 14-day free trial.
- Predictive tasks for spreadsheets
- Great UI
- Includes resource management
- Good for RFP processes
- Additional fee for onboarding/training
- Higher learning curve than some other tools
- Caters more to agencies
8. ProjectManager – Best agile reporting tool
The award-winning software ProjectManager.com is a well-rounded PM tool used by some big-name brands, including NASA and Ralph Lauren.
It’s not a pure-bred agile tool, but it offers a couple of flexible features that agile teams in various settings can take advantage of. For example, Kanban boards with real-time reports and collaboration features. You can attach files to cards, make comments, assign tasks, and check your real-time project stats in the dashboard view. For reporting, it doesn’t specifically have agile reports (for instance, a burndown chart). However, the real-time dashboard serves the same purpose—and you can set up your own custom reports in addition to pre-set reports on expenses, timesheets, team availability, workloads, tasks, and more.
One of the coolest things about this tool is that it lets you seamlessly switch between views. It’s a great tool for teams who have adopted some agile principles into a hybrid methodology because you can easily toggle between Gantt chart, task list, and Kanban board views, adapting the tool to what makes the most sense for the task at hand.
ProjectManager.com integrations include native integrations with Google Apps like Drive, Gmail, Calendar, etc. as well as Microsoft Office and Microsoft Project. For all other integrations, you can use Zapier to sync ProjectManager.com with other tools.
Pricing for ProjectManager.com starts at $15/user/month, with their basic “Personal” plan requiring a minimum of 5 users. They offer a 30-day free trial (a credit card is required to sign up for a free trial).
- Excellent high level view of project
- Customizable schedule templates
- Time and expense tracking
- Multilingual and very flexible
- No mobile app
- No way to update partially complete tasks
- Doesn’t output schedule files to .mpp
9. Zoho Sprints – Best for beginner agile practitioners and agile veterans
Zoho Sprints is an agile project management tool that aims to provide an iterative and collaborative approach to work. It can be used equally well by seasoned agile practitioners as well as by teams that are starting our their journey of agile transformation.
An intuitive backlog makes it easy to plan and prioritize work items that are in the format of user stories, tasks, and bugs. Scrumban teams can also set WIP limits, sort and view progress in swimlanes, and track sprint summaries on dashboards. Incomplete work items can be moved back to the backlog or moved across other active and upcoming sprints.
The Global View helps in tracking progress across all projects. Each project gets a project dashboard that provides project managers and Scrum masters a birds-eye view of project progress. Actionable insights from velocity charts, burnup and burndown reports, and cumulative flow diagrams help teams iterate their sprint planning.
Teams get live updates about all project activities with the project feed. The Meetings module lets teams schedule sprint planning, review, and retrospective meetings. All users can log billable and non-billable hours while the global timer can be used to start a timer for any work item. The timesheet reports provide a summary of log hours distributed across parameters like duration, sprint, work item type, and user.
Issues from Jira can be imported using the built-in Jira Import wizard. Software development teams can use built-in integrations with tools like GitHub, GitLab, and Bitbucket. There is also a Marketplace that has several pre-built extensions. You can also build and sell extensions as well.
Zoho Sprints offers a free trial for 15 days (no credit card required). Zoho Sprints has one paid plan starting at $12/12 users and every additional user costs $5, billed monthly.
- Robust customization options
- Easily schedule meetings for sprint reviews and daily stand-ups
- Easily turn feed messages into a work item
- No cumulative by-project timesheets for a user
- Doesn’t integrate well with other Zoho apps
- No Kanban boards
10. Nutcache – Best for flexibility to various agile methodologies
Nutcache is a project management tool designed to plan, track, and manage all aspects of your project using a sophisticated toolbox of color-coded schedules, task organization queues, and data reporting. Users can organize with Agile or Scrum project management, depending on your preferences.
Use the Gantt chart to plan, track, and visually organize your tasks with easy drag-drop-and-click editing techniques. Nutcache offers tools to prioritize and focus on critical tasks: build custom workflows and attach multiple assignees to a task, break down each phase of your project, make adjustments to reschedule your tasks, and visualize project deadlines.
Integrations include Dynacom Accounting, PayPal, 2Checkout, Stripe, Authorized.Net, QuickBooks Online, Google Sign In, Google Drive, GitHub, Slack, and hundreds of other apps through Zapier.
Nutcache costs from $6/user/month with a “Pro” plan that requires 5 users.
- Easy to use
- Great time tracking functionality
- Easy to integrate new employees
- Complicated security levels for employees
- Need more third party integrations
Summary Of The Best Agile Tools
Criteria For Choosing Agile Tools
The best agile management tools supply the following most important elements for agile project management. I look at elements outside of their feature set, such as their user interface, their usability (how easy is it to learn?). I also evaluate how much value the tool offers for the price—how its price stacks up against other tools with similar features and functionality.
I looked for the following features when evaluating the best agile tools in this review:
- Task management – Kanban or Scrum boards with projects, task lists and everything else that goes with it – from files and discussions to time records and expenses.
- Backlog management tools – Features to vote on, label, prioritize, and re-prioritize user stories and bugs.
- User story tools – Basic tools consist of cards on boards, which all online project management software offer. However, more comprehensive agile platforms include more user story tools such as dedicated boards for user story mapping and dedicated features for estimating user stories.
- Team collaboration – Communicate updates with local and distributed teams, and share task lists, feedback, and assignments
- Agile reporting & analytics – Tools should, at the very least, offer an agile dashboard displaying common agile charts like burndown and velocity. More advanced agile reporting features include progress reports for stakeholders, team performance evaluation features, and financial reporting tools.
And finally, I check for integrations. I want to make sure the tool plays well with the right tools. In the case of agile tools, which are often used for developing software, I treat integrations with software development and issue management tools with higher priority. However, keep in mind teams in non-development environments won’t need this type of integration and would benefit more from integrations with other work apps like Slack, Google Apps, Adobe, and others.
Other agile tools worth considering:
None of the above work for you? Check out our list of other agile tools worth having a gander at:
- ZenHub – one of the top software development project management tools for agile teams, built directly into GitHub
- GitScrum – a simple low-cost agile management software for growing businesses
- Hansoft – agile management software with additional portfolio and product backlog management tools, built to scale to the enterprise level
- AgileCRM – one of the few agile tools not designed for software dev teams—this is a CRM, project management, marketing, and customer support tool combined into one and designed to support agile practices across a variety of industries
- Scoro – a general business management software (financial management, work scheduling, project management, CRM, quoting, reporting) with a couple of agile-based tools
- GoodDay – a modern work management platform with some of the best visualizations around. Find multiple views of your projects, tasks, teams, and work in progress, plus beautiful charts and reports.
- Conceptboard – a simple agile tool with collaboration features to sync teams across time zones and departments
- Phabricator – an agile project tracking and planning tool for software development projects that includes tools for code reviews and testing
- Hygger – flexible project management software agile teams can use for making product roadmaps, planning sprints, managing requirements, prioritizing features, managing clients, releases, bugs, issues, and a dozen other use cases.
- OpenProject – comprehensive open source agile project management software
- Kanbanchi – agile project management software made for collaboration on G Suite
- Wrike – a robust work management platform with some agile features like planning boards
- Yanado – great agile productivity tool—this is a task and project management tool that lives inside your Gmail and helps manage emails as tasks on Kanban-style board
Need expert help finding the right Agile Project Management software?
We’ve partnered with the software comparison portal Crozdesk.com to help you find the right solution. Crozdesk’s Agile Project Management software advisors can give you independent advice and shortlist software products that best fit your specific needs. Our partnership gives you free access to their tailored software selection advice and community negotiated discounts, taking the hassle out of the research process.
It takes just a minute to submit your requirements and they will give you a call at no cost or commitment. You’ll get custom product shortlists covering the top solutions that best fit your specific needs from their team of software experts (via phone or email) and they can even connect you to your choice of the selected vendors. To get started, please submit the form below: