With so many different project management solutions out there, figuring out which is right for you is tough. You know you want efficient planning, tracking, and coordination of project tasks, deadlines, and milestones, but need to figure out which tool is best. I've got you! In this post, I'll help make your choice easy by using my personal experience managing hundreds of projects with various teams and projects to give you my picks of the best project timeline management software.
What is project timeline management software?
Project timeline management software is a specialized tool that helps you plan, visualize, and manage the chronological sequence of tasks and milestones throughout a project. This software typically provides features to create and customize project timelines, assign tasks to team members, set dependencies, and track progress. It allows users to create Gantt charts or other visual representations of project timelines, providing a clear and comprehensive overview of the project schedule.
Click Up has the most features you want in a timeline management software solution, such as flexibility, making it suitable for freelancers working in different industries. The tool is easy to use and intuitive, meaning that you will not be wasting valuable time learning the ropes. The software also has an app for every device, making it suitable for individuals or teams working on different devices at different times.
If there is one thing that makes Click Up beat the competition, it has to be the company's customer service. The company promises that someone will be available 24 hours a day, every day, even during the holidays. Added to this, when you use the tool, you get access to daily webinars and free coaching. This is why the tool is great for freelancers who often need support outside traditional business hours.
Click Up integrates with Slack, GitHub, GitLab, Webhooks, Everhour, Toggl, Harvest, Google Drive, One Drive, Dropbox, Outlook, Google Calendar, Figma, Vimeo, YouTube, Loom, Zoom, Bitbucket, Chrome, Amazon Alexa, Google Assistant, Google Hangouts Chat, Intercom, Box, Zendesk, Front, Clokify, Timely, PomoDone, TMetric, Timeneye, Promodone, and a host of other apps.
Click Up costs from $5/user/month and offers a free forever plan for personal use.
Miro is an online whiteboard and virtual collaboration software. It can be used for various parts of your project management process, from brainstorming through to task management. Your team can start with a blank canvas and map out ideas, tasks, timelines, and milestones. You can choose from shapes, lines, comments, sticky notes, images, video, and other multimedia assets.
The software has hundreds of pre-built templates, too, to help get you started. Things like product roadmaps, Kanban boards, Gantt charts, calendars, and process workflows can all be created. It's a highly versatile tool that can support your team in any number of ways. Whatever way you like to manage your project timeline, it can facilitate that.
The platform provides end-to-end encryption and adheres to industry-standard security protocols. Users can manage access to boards, set passwords, and activate two-factor authentication, enhancing security further. The software integrates with other workplace tools like Figma, Slack, monday.com, Asana, and Jira, among others. With these integrations ideas generated in Miro can be turned into tasks and projects, or shared across teams and departments.
A free plan is available, and paid plans start from $10/user/month.
FigJam is a virtual whiteboarding tool, created by (and easily integrated with) Figma. Because it's a more freeform solution, it can be used for project timeline management but also project brainstorming, scoping, planning, and more. The software comes with tons of templates your team can use to structure their work planning and tracking activities.
Once you have a whiteboard set up, you can customize it with stickers, comments, shapes, lines, arrows, images, and more. Timeline templates are among the pre-built options to choose from, and your team can collaborate in real-time to outline your project plan. You can also use your timeline board to track your team's progress as they accomplish tasks. Plenty of support documentation is also available for FigJam, both from the company and from the community.
Something else that stands out about this tool is its integration with Figma's design platform. You can connect the assets you create in FigJam with your Figma assets, creating a direct line between your ideation and planning with your team's execution. This can be helpful for adhering to timelines and reducing jumping between disjointed systems.
Native integrations are available for Figma, Microsoft Teams, Asana, Jira, Mixpanel, and Github.
A freemium plan is available for up to 3 boards, and paid plans start from $3 per user, per month.
Forecast is a project timeline management tool based on artificial intelligence (AI). The tool's AI makes it an excellent solution for specialized services firms because it reduces the time taken by non-billable work such as project planning, allocation of resources, and filling out timesheets so that teams can focus on more critical aspects of the project.
One of the excellent features that make Forecast better than many of its competitors is that it’s designed to show red bars when an employee is overbooked. This helps you to reallocate tasks within a project in an equitable way. The tool’s integration with the Harvest app allows users to see which projects are overrunning their time and budget.
Forecast integrates with Asana, Azure Active Directory, Azure DevOps, BambooHR, GitHub, GitLab, Google Calendar, Google Drive, Forecast for Android, GoSimplo, Harvest, HubSpot, iCloud Calendar, Forecaster for iOs, Jira MS Excel, MS Teams, Okta, Onelogin, Outlook, Pipedrive, Quickbooks, Reeport, Salesforce, Slack, Timelog, Trello, Unit4, Xero, and Zapier.
Forecast costs from $29/user/month and offers a free trial, but the tool's website doesn't indicate how long the trial is intended to last.
Backlog is designed to ensure that all the different segments of a project easily connect with each other. The tool's Wikis make projects available to all team members and allow for easy editing, making it a great tool for software development teams. The Kanban boards make it easy to visualize different phases. Interactive Gantt charts permit users to visualize the timeline of an entire project.
Other features that put Backlog in this top ten list include giving users the ability to create parent and child tasks to enhance order and create custom fields relevant to a specific project. Its file-sharing feature makes it possible to keep all files in one workplace. The tool's drag and drop functionality allows for easy editing of timelines and durations or changing a task's status.
Backlog integrates with Typetalk, Cacoo, Nulab Pass, Slack, Redmine, Jira Importer, iOS App, LombdaTest, and Android App.
Backlog costs from $35/30users/month and offers a forever free plan for up to 10 users and a 30-day free trial on paid plans.
Since the pronouncement that Covid-19 had become a pandemic, the workplace has changed. Many organizations have realized that a hybrid team can be as effective as co-located teams. ProjectManager is a software program designed for these hybrid teams.
A central feature that makes ProjectManager one of the best tools is that while it provides team members with a common goal created in, say, Gantt charts, it also allows individual teams to use different methods to execute the project such as Kanban boards or spreadsheet views.
ProjectManager integrates with Slack, Trello, Atlassian Jira, and Microsoft Teams.
ProjectManager costs from $14/user/month and offers a free 30-day trial and a free forever plan for up to three users.
Projectworks is a project and resource management software that combines time tracking, resource planning, budgeting, and invoicing capabilities. It can also provide revenue forecasting to help you plan your upcoming projects and allocate resources accordingly.
The resourcing module of the software allows you to allocate team members to projects, or plan projects with shadow resources. It provides you with a week by week overview of who will be working on what, making it easy to make adjustments as needed. Employees can also log their hours in the system, giving you an accurate measure of time allotted vs. time needed for various projects and initiatives.
The software also provides admins with utilization reports, so they can see who can handle an increased workload and who's been assigned too many tasks. Your staff can also submit leave requests, which will show up when you're planning and resourcing projects.
Project expenses can be tracked as the work progresses, helping you stay within your budget. Expenses reported and employee hours logged can both be used to generate invoices for your clients or customers.
The software integrates with QuickBooks, Xero, MYOB, Jira, Azure DevOps, and Hubspot. You can also connect it with a paid Zapier account to access additional integrations, or use its API to build custom integrations. A free trial is available, and pricing is available upon request.
GoodDay is a work management platform for building timelines to plan projects, allocate resources, and manage tasks, subprojects, events, and dependencies.
Why I picked GoodDay: It’s an affordable all-in-one tool for project management, tasks collaboration, planning, reporting, and productivity with an easy-to-use interface.
GoodDay lets you customize Gantt chart views, columns, the user interface, fields, task types, project templates, and priorities. Additional functionalities include auto-zoom, export to PDF, and filtering.
GoodDay Standout Features & Integrations
Features include 20+ views, templates, resource planning and workload, unlimited projects hierarchy, portfolios, agile project support, and request forms.
Integrations include hundreds of apps such as Google Drive, Google Calendar, Gmail, Slack, GitHub, Gitlab, Excel, Jira, Trello, and many others, accessible via native integration. More integrations are available through Zapier and GoodDay Api.
GoodDay Plans & Pricing
Pricing starts at $6/user/month and offers a free-forever version for up to 15 users.
TeamGantt is a project planning tool that enables users to build and adjust timelines using a drag and drop scheduling feature. A leading feature of the software is that it helps users use dependencies to ensure that work is done correctly. You can use baselines to determine the impact of delays on the project deadlines. The tool is great for small businesses because it's easy to use and doesn't require much training.
One of the features that make TeamGantt a great software tool is its clean and clear layout. Added to this, the software makes it possible to see the big picture at a glance. TeamGantt's sharing capabilities are some of the best in the market. For example, the software allows you to share charts without logging in.
TeamGantt integrates with Zapier, Dropbox, Slack, Basecamp 2, and Trello.
TeamGantt costs from $19/user/month, offers a 30-day free trial and a forever free version for up to three users.
GanttPRO is an online timeline management tool designed to facilitate collaboration between team members while also giving clients an idea of a specific project's start and end dates. The tool allows a project to be split into tasks, subtasks, and milestones. It's suitable for both professionals and students because it’s not loaded with too many features that make it bulky and expensive.
GanttPRO has made it into the top project timeline software list because it is easy to learn. The developers of the software promise that it takes only 3 minutes to become an advanced user of the GanttPRO Gantt chart online maker. The tool combines the features of the waterfall project management approach and agile methodology.
GanttPRO integrates with Slack.
Basic plans for 1 user start at $7.99/month if billed annually.
Best customizable workflow templates
Best for working with formulas
- Zoho Projects
Best for setting and tracking task dependencies
Best for large and complex projects
Best for small teams just getting started
- Polaris PSA By Replicon
Best for sophisticated what-if scenario analysis
Best for project portfolio management
- Office Timeline
Best for visual project planning
- Hub Planner
Best for team analytics & dynamic reports
Project management for predictive scheduling in agile teams
Project timeline software for tracking progress for scattered teams
Time tracking, task management, file storage, and messaging software for project management teams
Project management software for tracking work time and client billing
- Toggl Plan
Project timeline management tool for ensuring equitable work distribution in small teams
Free project management software for managing deadlines through managing task statuses and priorities and setting planned and actual due dates
- Teamwork Projects
Project timeline management tool for ensuring accurate billable time and real-time collaboration between team members and clients
How I Picked The Best Project Timeline Management Software
First, I researched and selected all the popular timeline management software according to user reviews and ratings. Then, I narrowed down the list by weighing factors that make software a good option for building and maintaining timelines. Finally, using my experience in project management, I came up with criteria I would use for my evaluation, such as:
User Interface (UI)
I look for a project timeline management tool that’s simple to use, clear to understand, and attractive. It should respond with speed and be consistent whether I’m using a mobile phone, tablet, laptop, or desktop.
I pay attention to how the software allows me to solve my challenges, such as managing task lists, setting task dependencies, using calendar views, and file sharing. To satisfy this criterion, the software needs to be intuitive and allow me to complete critical tasks adequately and efficiently while also leaving me with a good feeling about my experience.
I look for a software tool that creates a seamless experience with different software tools that I use to accomplish other tasks like project scheduling, customer relations management (CRM), connecting with different stakeholders, checking project status, invoicing, and project templates.
That is why I research all the ways in which the tool can expand its capabilities. These include pre-built integrations, custom integrations using an API, and connections through third-party software, like Zapier.
I am looking for a software solution compatible with my existing systems. This implies that apart from looking at the operating system that the software can work on, I should also determine whether it supports mobile applications for iOS or Android.
I look for the optimal combination of quality and cost. This means I look for the best outcome at the lowest price possible. However, through a cost-benefit analysis, I consider both the financial and non-financial costs, meaning that I will not always go with the cheapest available tool.
What is a project timeline?
A project timeline is a visual representation of the work you need to do in a project. You can find it in the best project management software as a special view and it contains task information, and details on milestones, dependencies, and task progress.
How do you create a timeline?
Creating a timeline is usually the easy part. After you have laid out all the tasks that need to be done, you can go to the timeline view. Then, you use the drag-and-drop functionality to start building your chart. Finally, once you finish you can connect bars to signal dependencies between tasks.
If you want detailed information, you can check out our guide to building Gantt charts.
What are the key features of project timeline management software?
- Task management and scheduling. This feature ensures smooth workflows because it connects project tasks and subtasks to make it easy to collaborate. This helps in avoiding silos, repetition of tasks, and confusion. A software package with Gantt charts or Kanban boards makes dependencies and relationships clear.
- Real-time reporting. It’s much easier to deal with problems at an early stage before they escalate into insurmountable challenges. One way of keeping your fingers on the pulse of a project timeline is to know which milestones are being completed on schedule and which ones are behind. Real-time reports provide an idea of project progress at any specific moment.
- Team collaboration tools. Successful timeline management depends on effective collaboration. Therefore, I am looking for a system that allows for document management and sharing, updating statuses and timelines, making it easy to communicate with an entire team as efficiently as possible.
- Data Analytics. Having data is important, but knowing what the data is saying is more crucial. This is the reason I am looking for a timeline and task management software tool that can track project timelines and provide me with insights on which projects are lagging and which ones are ahead of schedule.
- Security. Projects involve a lot of personal and confidential information. Apart from that, it’s easy to lose important and irretrievable information if security is not taken seriously during software development.
Why do projects get delayed?
If your team can deliver projects on time and within budget most of the time, congratulations; your project planning or project timeline management software is on point. You deserve a pat on the back because a recent survey concluded that only 29% of organizations said they mostly or always complete projects on time.
Several reasons can be attributed to projects that overrun their allocated timeframes, including poor teamwork or team collaboration, lack of automation, cumbersome approvals and permissions processes, general poor communication regarding due dates, poor resource management, and failure to manage remote teams effectively.
Undoubtedly, balancing all the elements attributed to project success can be challenging, especially for small businesses, when you use legacy project management solutions like excel spreadsheets and old-fashioned written to-do lists. However, the good news is that the market is awash with software geared explicitly at managing project timelines for all types of teams.
Now that we've covered the basics of timelines and tools you can use, you can check out more content on this topic. We have a guide that tells you how to create a project plan in 10 easy steps. Also, a little more in-depth knowledge on project milestones and how they are important to your timeline.
Related tool lists:
- Gantt chart software
- Best Project Scheduling Software
- Best project management software list (60 tools)
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