In my Forecast in-depth review, I’m sharing the results of my analysis and evaluation from hands-on testing and experimentation. Before we dive in, if you’re just starting your search for the best resource management software, you should first check out my picks for the best resource management tools. Forecast is one of the top-rated resource management tools out there, but to figure out if it's a good match for you, it's important to understand the software’s benefits and drawbacks.
My in-depth Forecast review will take you through everything you need to know to make a more informed decision—pros and cons, features and functionality, pricing, and more—to help you to better understand its capabilities and suitability for your needs.
Forecast Product Overview
The Forecast app is a robust project management software designed to streamline workflow through integrated time tracking and enhanced team collaboration. Its target users are project managers and teams looking for a unified platform for complex project planning and execution. The benefits of the tool include improved project visibility, efficient resource allocation, and a reduction in time spent on project administration.
- AI Work Automation: Saves time. This feature harnesses artificial intelligence to automate task allocation and resource planning, cutting down manual scheduling efforts.
- Real-time Insights: Enhances decision-making. Access to real-time data and analytics helps teams make informed decisions quickly, adapting to changes efficiently.
- Customizable Workflows: Increases flexibility. The ability to tailor workflows allows teams to align the software's functionality with their unique project management processes.
- Learning Curve: Requires adaptation. New users may find it takes time to fully grasp the breadth of features and how to integrate them into their daily work.
- Integration Depth: Limited third-party tools. While Forecast integrates with many services, the depth of these integrations can be shallow, requiring additional steps to achieve full functionality.
- Cost Efficiency: Potentially high for small teams. Small teams or startups may find the cost versus features balance less advantageous than other straightforward project management solutions.
Based on my professional experience, I highly recommend Forecast as a project and resource management software. It offers solid project oversight capabilities and robust CRM features. Its AI-driven resource allocation helps to minimize manual input and optimize team productivity, which is crucial in IT project management.
Forecast is a powerful tool for mid-sized to large organizations with complex project timelines and resource management needs. While its support and interface are sleek and user-friendly, the learning curve can be steep, making onboarding challenging for some users. Additionally, its pricing may not always match the perceived value for smaller teams or projects with more basic functionality needs.
Forecast: The Bottom Line
Forecast stands out with its AI-powered project timeline prediction and decision-making assistance. This feature is more advanced than what other tools offer. It also has a unique combination of project management, time tracking, and CRM functionalities in one platform, eliminating the need for multiple tools.
Excellent is its interface that centralizes project information, providing visibility into team workloads and project progress. Noteworthy is its suite of integrations. Despite some being less than ideal, it still allows for a significant level of automation and streamlining in day-to-day operations.
Forecast Deep Dive
- Task Management - Yes
- Milestone Tracking - Yes
- Gantt Charts - Yes
- Time Tracking - Yes
- Resource Scheduling - Yes
- Document Storage - Yes
- Reporting/Analytics - Yes
- Financial Management - Yes
- Risk Analysis - Yes
- Agile Methodologies Support - Yes
- CRM - Yes
- Collaboration Tools - Yes
- Project Forecasting - Yes
- Kanban Boards - Yes
- Issue Tracking - Yes
- Workflow Automation - Yes
- Third-party Integrations - Yes
- Mobile Access - Yes
- Customizable Templates - Yes
- User Access Controls - Yes
- Real-time Chat - Yes
- Calendar Management - Yes
- Email Integration - Yes
- Data Import/Export - Yes
- API Access - Yes
Forecast Feature Overview
- AI Work Automation: Forecast's AI-driven automation capabilities for task scheduling and resource management are powerful, reducing the time required for setup and ongoing project adjustments.
- Real-time Insights: The real-time dashboard provides immediate visibility into project health, financials, and performance, which helps managers make proactive decisions.
- Customizable Workflows: Flexibility in workflow customization allows businesses to tailor the tool to their specific project management styles and processes.
- Resource Scheduling: With Forecast, resource management is dynamic, offering a clear view of team availability and project allocation, which is crucial for balancing workloads.
- Time Tracking: Integrated time tracking within tasks and projects simplifies the process of monitoring billable hours and employee productivity.
- Financial Management: Forecast excels in financial management, allowing users to track budgets, forecast costs, and monitor project financials in one place.
- Agile Methodologies Support: It supports Agile processes with features like Kanban boards and sprints, making it versatile for various project management approaches.
- Advanced Reporting: With comprehensive reporting tools, users can create detailed reports for deep dives into data and metrics necessary to stakeholders.
- Third-party Integrations: Forecast offers a range of integrations with other tools; although the depth can vary, it still enables a connected ecosystem for project management.
- CRM Features: Unlike some project management software, Forecast includes CRM features, which help manage customer information and sales pipelines within the same platform.
- AI Work Automation: Forecast's AI-driven automation for scheduling and resource allocation differentiates it from competitors by learning and adapting to project patterns, which enhances project efficiency.
- Project Forecasting: The ability to predict project timelines and adjust resources accordingly is a standout feature, which isn’t as developed in other project management tools.
- Advanced Reporting: Forecast provides in-depth custom reporting, which allows for a granular look into project performance, something that can be less comprehensive in other solutions.
Forecast offers seamless integration with leading business intelligence tools, enabling data-driven decision-making and empowering users to manage expenses efficiently. Its notable integrations include QuickBooks and Xero for accounting, Trello and Asana for task management, and Jira and GitHub for development workflows.
Moreover, Forecast integrates financial data, project tasks, and development updates between systems, with bespoke API, add-ons for analytics, and custom fields for data collection.
Forecast pricing scales with team size and feature needs. It may seem more expensive than similar tools, but it offers comprehensive features, especially in AI and automation. Users should consider additional costs, such as implementation services or premium support.
The pricing tiers for Forecast are as follows:
- Essential Tier: Offers basic project and resource management features. Pricing is typically lower, around $29/user/month (min 10 seats).
- Professional Tier: This includes everything in Essential plus financial and business intelligence features. Expect pricing to be mid-range, around $49/user/month (min 10 seats).
- Enterprise Tier: Includes all features in Professional, with additional security and support options suitable for larger organizations. This tier is priced higher, often requiring custom pricing upon request, and may come with extra support costs.
Prices are billed annually with a one-time setup fee based on the tier and level of onboarding assistance. Specifics may vary, contact the Forecast sales team for accurate information.
Ease of Use
In evaluating Forecast, I find that while the user interface is clean and modern, there is a complexity to it that requires a decent onboarding process to master. The software has a lot of features and functions, so it takes time to navigate through them all.
The tool's capabilities are rich and logically organized, but can be overwhelming for new users. The AI-driven features may not be immediately intuitive as they rely on improving data input and algorithms.
Forecast's customer support offers a variety of helpful resources like documentation, webinars, live chat, and tutorials. Response times are typically good, but during peak times there may be delays which can be frustrating for those who need immediate support.
The platform offers broad support but may fall short in dealing with complex issues or unique cases. The webinars and tutorials are helpful for onboarding and continuous learning, but users may find a gap in tailored support for their specific project management challenges.
Forecast Use Case
Who Would Be A Good Fit For Forecast?
From my assessment, Forecast best suits environments where project complexity requires robust planning and resource management. It is a good fit for mid-sized to large organizations with multiple teams and projects running simultaneously.
Agencies in software development, marketing, and consulting, where time tracking and project forecasting are critical, tend to benefit significantly. The tool suits those with a dedicated project management office or experienced project managers who can leverage its advanced features, such as AI work automation and business intelligence.
Loyal customers often cite the comprehensive nature of Forecast, which allows for detailed control over project variables and helps scale project management practices within growing companies.
Who Would Be A Bad Fit For Forecast?
Forecast may not be the best fit for tiny teams or solo entrepreneurs. The tool's breadth and complexity could be overkill for simple project tracking needs, potentially slowing down rather than streamlining processes. Industries with more straightforward project management needs, or those looking for a quick plug-and-play solution, might find Forecast cumbersome.
If your company is searching for a free or low-cost tool that offers only basic functionality, Forecast may not fully meet your expectations. This platform offers advanced project management features that businesses seeking a comprehensive tool can utilize by investing in it.
Is Forecast available on iOS and Android devices?
Yes, Forecast has apps available for both iOS and Android, which can be downloaded from the Apple App Store and Google Play Store, respectively.
Can I manage invoicing directly through Forecast?
The forecast allows you to manage invoicing within its platform, integrating financial management features that streamline the billing process.
Are there any user reviews available for Forecast in the app stores?
Yes, user reviews for Forecast are available on both the Apple App Store and Google Play Store, providing insights from other users' experiences.
Does Forecast offer a widget for iPhone or iPad?
Forecast offers a widget for iOS devices, enabling quick access to project overviews and other functionalities directly from the home screen on iPhone and iPad.
Is Forecast software available in languages other than English?
Currently, Forecast is primarily available in English, but it may offer support for additional languages.
Can I take a screenshot within the Forecast app to share with my team?
Yes, you can take screenshots within the Forecast app just as you would with any other application on your device.
Does Forecast have a lite version for users who want minimal features?
Forecast does not offer a lite version; its platform is comprehensive and designed for teams that require full project management capabilities.
How does Forecast handle notifications?
Forecast sends notifications for important updates and reminders, which can be customized to suit your workflow needs.
Alternatives to Forecast
- Asana: Asana is an excellent option for teams looking for a more straightforward and user-friendly interface that still offers powerful project management features.
- Trello: Trello stands out with its simple, card-based layout that works well for individuals and teams who prefer a highly visual task management approach.
- Monday.com: Monday.com excels in customization and is ideal for teams that want to tailor their project management software to fit particular workflow needs.
Forecast Company Overview & History
Forecast is a SaaS company that provides project management solutions to businesses in project-based sectors. It's privately owned and backed by venture funding. The headquarters of Forecast is situated in the United Kingdom, indicating its strong presence in the European market.
Forecast doesn't publicly disclose specific details about notable employees, board members, or advisors, but the company takes pride in its team's extensive expertise in AI, project management, and software development. The company's mission statement revolves around leveraging AI-driven automation to enable teams to work smarter, providing insights and efficiency in project management tasks.
Since its inception, Forecast has achieved several milestones, including substantial funding rounds, significant growth in its user base, and recognition as a leader in project management solutions. It has also expanded its offerings to include advanced resource management, time tracking, and team collaboration features, staying ahead in a competitive market.
In conclusion, Forecast stands out as a robust project management tool with strong capabilities in AI-driven automation and resource management. Its position is solid in the market, with a notable presence in the United Kingdom and an overall rating that reflects its quality and effectiveness. The software is best suited for mid-sized to large companies that require comprehensive project management features.
If you're thinking about using Forecast for your team, make sure to evaluate its features against your specific needs. Use any available trial periods to test its suitability for your organization. Share your experiences and questions in the comments below to learn from each other's insights.