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10 Best Project Planning Tools & Software List [2022]

The 10 Best Project Planning Tools List

Here’s a shortlist of the best online project planning tools:

  1. monday.com

    Best for Google users (G Suite and so on)

  2. Runn

    Best for IT and software teams

  3. GanttPRO

    Best for building project plans and timelines with online Gantt charts

  4. Zoho Projects

    Best for team scalability

  5. Kantata (formerly Mavenlink + Kimble)

    Best for resource management and planning

  6. Forecast

    Best for managing your projects, resources, and finances in one

  7. Paymo

    Best planning software for small & medium teams

  8. Kintone

    Best for building custom project workflows

  9. ProWorkflow

    Best for mobile users

  10. nutcache

    Best time tracker + planner

Project planning is one of the most important but time-consuming tasks in the entire project management lifecycle. It is the activity that will lead the initial conversations over your project, set expectations for all stakeholders, and help you keep track of activities.

Without proper PM software that helps you keep multiple projects organized and favors project insight, you’re in for a taste of hell on Earth. I’m talking about an excessive amount of time spent chasing people for progress updates, fights with clients over what dates and budgets you agreed on, multiple spreadsheets with potentially different formats, and more.

The project management tools on this list will help you avoid those situations and serve as a collaboration tool so that you, the client, and your team are aware of what is expected at all times.

Selection Criteria

There are a few categories that I focus on when analyzing and researching these project management tools for you. In this article, I focused on the following.

  1. User Interface (UI): Does the interface look uncluttered and simple enough to use? I focus on an interface that looks attractive, as you will be using this tool almost every day.
  2. Usability: I look for the factors that make it easy to learn and master. For example, good user support in the form of documentation or tutorial videos. The easier and more intuitive this project management tool is, the easier it will be to navigate and teach others how to use it.
  3. Integrations: I pick software that has integrations that can extend its functionality. These integrations will make your life simpler if you manage to connect other tools you are using.
  4. Pricing: I go deep into the pricing structure and look at the different tiers or pricing plans available and how much is the initial price. Also, I try to find information on free trials and free versions so you can try it yourself.

Key Features For Project Planning Tools

  1. Views: Diverse ways of displaying project information. These can include a Gantt chart, Kanban, calendar, table, and list view.
  2. Team collaboration tools: You can find Collaboration tools in the form of an integrated chat, the capacity to mention other members in the workspace on specific tasks, shared document creation, or interactive whiteboards.
  3. Resource planning: Most tools have resource management modules so you can see detailed information on workloads, allocation, and assigned activities.
  4. Analytics & reporting tools: This feature usually comes as a reporting module, plus a project dashboard. Both give you information on the time periods you are interested in. Dashboards, in particular, allow you to drag and drop elements to customize them to your needs.
  5. Automation: This feature helps you make recurring tasks a simple endeavor as they can be handled by the software without your intervention. You can also automate entire workflows, so make sure you look into this feature.
project planning tools logos list

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Overviews Of The Project Planning Tools Software

Here’s a brief description of each of the project planning tools that are featured on this top 10 list.

1

monday.com

Best for Google users (G Suite and so on)

monday.com is a popular project management software that can easily handle basic and complicated projects. Users will find it easy to collaborate, keep track of progress, customize workflows, and analyze information within the platform.

With an emphasis on transparency and collaboration, monday.com is packed with features that let you do your tasks and work with others using the tools you love. View your data in various highly visual dashboard options, communicate easily within monday.com, and manage all your resources efficiently.

monday.com integrates with popular productivity tools such as Slack, Dropbox, Outlook, and so much more with the option to integrate without any code required.

monday.com costs from $6/user/month and comes with a free 14-day trial. They offer a free plan for up to 2 users.

14-day free trial

From $10/user/month

2

Runn

Best for IT and software teams

Runn is a real-time project and resource planning tool with integrated time tracking and powerful forecasting capabilities. Get a bird’s-eye view of all projects and people to stay on top of your business. Collaborate with co-workers to remain up-to-date and on the same page with remote teams.

Scheduling is easy and intuitive in Runn–simply drag-and-drop to create project phases and allocations. Create project milestones, project notes and add time off. Flick between monthly, quarterly and half-yearly views to plan for the short and long term. If you don’t have the right person at the right time, use placeholders to define the requirements for the project.

Runn makes planning dynamic and visual. Watch the charts and reports update as you plan your projects. You can see visualisations of capacity, workload, availability, and billable and non-billable utilisation. Plan out tentative projects to see how your resourcing plans might change if the work gets confirmed.

Track projects, view forecasts, and get relevant metrics within Runn. You’ll have up-to-date data in one place to keep tabs on insights like utilization, project variance, and overall financial performance. Use Runn’s built-in timesheets to understand how much time was worked on your projects compared to what was planned.

Runn integrates with Harvest, WorkflowMax, and Clockify for importing project, client, and people data and syncing time entries. With Runn’s API, you can build your own integration to send data across your favorite tools.

Try Runn free for 14 days, no credit card required. Runn has three pricing plans: Free for Startup (5 or fewer people), $10 per person for Pro, and custom pricing for Enterprise. There is also a 20% discount on annual plans.

14-day free trial

From $10/person managed/month

3

GanttPRO

Best for building project plans and timelines with online Gantt charts

GanttPRO is a project planning tool with powerful features for managing and completing various projects. Project teams can plan projects, schedule tasks, and manage resources in a centralized workspace, collaborating with colleagues, customers, and stakeholders.

GanttPRO users can break down their work into tasks using handy Gantt charts, assign tasks to their teammates, organize them into projects for timelines, set task dependencies and milestones, check the team’s progress, get notifications, and more.

This planning tool allows creating of several workspaces and projects. As soon as you’re done creating them, the drag & drop option will make it easy to start adding tasks and setting start/due dates.

GanttPRO is an inexpensive project planning solution with a friendly design, so you can get started without extra overhead. For an easy start, you may use ready-made Gantt chart templates. Additionally, you may export your diagrams and import charts from software like Microsoft Project and Excel.

Basic plans for 1 user start at $7.99/month if billed annually.

14-day free trial

From $7.99/user/month (billed annually)

4

Zoho Projects

Best for team scalability

Zoho Projects is an online project management solution that focuses on easy and effective planning, tracking, and collaboration. You can manage both simple and complex projects by splitting work items into milestones, tasklists, tasks and subtasks and viewing them as Kanban boards.

Zoho Projects lets you plan and schedule work with Gantt charts that have a drag and drop interface. You can set up baselines, compare multiple baselines, identify critical tasks, and create dependencies right from the Gantt chart. Zoho Projects comes with a workload allocation feature that lets you manage tasks and resources as well.

Your team can track project progress closely with numerous dashboards, charts and reports, communication tools, and collaborative documents. Zoho Projects also provides numerous features such as time tracking, budgeting, issue tracking, portfolio management, and automation capabilities.

Zoho Projects is great for scalability. You can start with their free plan and easily expand as you grow and need additional user spots or more advanced features. Even the uppermost plan is super affordable comparatively. You can also scale by integrating their other first-party platforms into your plan for sales, CRM, customer service, and so on.

Zoho Projects integrates with tools such as Google Drive, Google Calendar, Slack, Github, Bitbucket, and Dropbox. Access even more integrations through Zapier.

Zoho Projects costs from $4/user/month (billed annually) and offers a 10-day free trial. They have a free plan for up to 3 users.

10-day free trial

From $5/user/month

5

Kantata (formerly Mavenlink + Kimble)

Best for resource management and planning

Mavenlink is a robust resource management software with advanced project planning tools for execution, project accounting, and project analysis. For those going all out, you can leverage their business intelligence and team collaboration modules for a complete project management experience in a single operating environment.

On top of this, it offers a system of dashboards, live time and expense tracking features, and a great documenting system. Drilling down into its key features, the BI suite module supplies built-in reports, custom reporting, trend analysis, data visualization, as well as data integration with other systems.

The software also provides more accounting tools than many others, with project costing, project and task budget management, real-time utilization and margin tracking, invoicing, rate cards, and robust integrations into back-end financial systems. It also has some good contextual collaboration features to communicate in both provide and public discussions around tasks, projects, and many other project objects.

Mavenlink operates its own integration platform (called M-Bridge) that lets you connect to other business apps like CRM, HCM, and financial software. On top of the M-Bridge platform, Mavelink provides several pre-built integrations with these tools: Expensify, G Suite, Xero, Salesforce, Netsuite, Jira, Hubspot, Slack, Concur, Dynamics 365, Qualtrics, Quickbooks, and Sage Intacct.

Mavenlink costs from $39/user/month and offers a free trial and demo.

Demo available

Pricing upon request

6

Forecast

Best for managing your projects, resources, and finances in one

Forecast is a project planning tool that unites your task lists, resources, and financials in one AI-powered platform. Project managers can leverage Forecast’s workflow automation capabilities to create smart schedules, estimate timeframes and budgets, and populate timesheets instantly. Forecast is currently used in over 40 countries by an assortment of agencies, consulting companies, SMBs, and enterprises.

PMs can control the workflow by building out detailed task lists and flagging clear priorities. Task cards allow every team member to easily comment, share files, and register time spent. Everything related to the specific task appears in one place, including dependencies and subtasks. You can put together projects for any type of work: fixed price, time and material, or retainer.

Forecast’s AI learns from previous work and suggests the number of hours you normally register on similar tasks to help you log time faster. You can monitor time registrations from a team perspective and notify each member if they forget to enter something in. Time tracking utilization on a company-wide level is calculated for you for easy alerts, estimates, and reporting.

Forecast integrates with Slack, Microsoft Teams, iCloud Calendar, Google Drive, Google Calendar, Outlook, Harvest, Trello, Asana, GitLab, Github, and dozens more using a paid plan through Zapier. Higher-tier subscriptions include native integrations with Timelog, Xero, QuickBooks Online, JIRA, Azure DevOps, Salesforce, Okta, OneLogin, and Azure Active Directory.

Forecast costs from $29/user/month with a minimum of 10 users and offers a 14-day free trial.

14-day free trial

From $29/user/month

Pros

  • Automated cost and budget estimations
  • Excellent iOS and Android apps
  • AI powered auto-scheduling and time entry suggestions
  • Projects, resources and financials connected in one platform

Cons

  • Minimum of 10 seats
  • No asset management
  • No browser extension for time tracking
7

Paymo

Best planning software for small & medium teams

Paymo is a project planning software for freelancers, small and medium teams, and businesses. It helps you plan projects and tasks, track your work time, and bill clients from the same platform and conveniently comes with a mobile app.

In Paymo, you can manage different workspaces and workflows, set recurring tasks, assign multiple users, and set deadlines and priorities. View all your tasks across all projects grouped by priority, progress, or due date. Even better, use the meta Kanban board to overview your team’s tasks grouped by workflow and user. Set task hours budget and get notifications for due dates or exceeded budgets.

Paymo’s Gantt chart schedules tasks automatically on the project timeline. Simply drag and drop tasks to create dependencies and make adjustments to lead & lag time while visualizing the critical path. It’s a great way to set milestones and monitor the progress of your project. If you’re instead focused on your team and HR, the resource scheduling and planning tools allow you to manage your resource allocation, view your resource capacity, create bookings, and schedule paid or unpaid leaves.

Paymo integrates with Google, Slack, Zapier, and more.

Free for freelancers and teams of up to 10 users. Paid plans start at $9.95/user/month. Paymo comes with a 15-day free trial.

Free plan available

From $4.95/user/month

8

Kintone

Best for building custom project workflows

Kintone is a customizable project planning platform used by teams at Volvo Trucks North America, Japan Airlines, Shiseido, and over 23,000 organizations worldwide. Their unique approach to project and task management lets you build a wide variety of customizable “apps” either from scratch, using templates or from your existing spreadsheets, for data management, business processes, and workflows. Kintone apps can be customized for project management, sales CRM, customer databases, expense reports, shared to-do lists, equipment management, product feedback, and much more.

Apps can be built either from scratch, using templates, or from existing spreadsheets for data management, business processes, and workflow purposes. Kintone apps can be customized for project management, sales CRM, customer databases, expense reports, shared to-do lists, equipment management, product feedback, and much more.

Kintone lets you build agile project management apps by dragging and dropping elements that you want to see onto the page: rich text fields, date fields, drop-down menus, number fields with built-in calculations, spaces for attachments, user or group selection menus, related data from other apps, tables, and more. Your agile project management solution can look and work however you want it to.

What makes Kintone particularly great for agile project management is that it empowers project managers to track all facets of their project, from individual tasks and project data to workflows and communication—and then use their findings to rapidly improve their processes as they go. Because the end-users are also the app designers, feedback loops are instant, continuous, and actionable.

There are so many ways to customize Kintone it can be hard to know where to start. Read the starter blog “What Can You Build with Kintone?” or watch Creating an App from Scratch for a quick look at how the drag-and-drop builder works.

Kintone lets you expand its capabilities with both free native plugins built by the Kintone team as well as integrations with other tools like Slack, Gmail, Google Calendar, Outlook, Tableau, Dropbox, Salesforce, HubSpot, Eventbrite, WordPress, QuickBooks, MailChimp, and many more through a paid plan with Zapier or via API integrations.

Kintone costs $24/user/month with a minimum requirement of 5 users. They offer a 30-day free trial (no credit card required) and discounted prices for nonprofits and educators. Kintone’s team also offers a free custom app build as part of the free trial process.

30 days free trial

From $24/user/month

9

ProWorkflow

Best for mobile users

ProWorkflow makes it easy to work on the go, from anywhere, using any device. It’s a cloud-based project management software that serves as a platform for task tracking, time tracking, collaboration, and is a central source of information. It also comes with invoicing and performance and financial reporting features.

Because ProWorkflow is accessible on any device, making your teams more productive, allowing management to gain more insight, and everyone can communicate with teammates, clients, and contractors within one platform.

ProWorkflow integrates with tools such as Xero, Dropbox, Quickbooks Online, Quickbooks Desktop, and so much more through Zapier.

ProWorkflow costs from $20 per user per month with no user limit. ProWorkflow offers a free trial and more specific pricing details upon request.

14-day free trial

From $20/user/month

10

nutcache

Best time tracker + planner

Nutcache offers users an all-in-one solution for project management where users can organize their data the way they want, stay within budget with the help of alerts, approve time and expenses as well as bill and invoice within the platform, to increase productivity, gain visibility, and maintain control.

Keep your projects on budget with Nutcache. Organize your workspace by viewing your data in Gantt charts, stay on track by automating reminders and alerts, and track all of your team members’ time no matter where they’re working from.

Nutcache integrates with PayPal, Stripe, QuickBooks, Dynacom Accounting, 2Checkout, Authorized.Net, Gmail, Google Drive, Github, Slack, and hundreds more using a paid plan through Zapier.

Nutcache costs $6 per user per month and they offer a free plan with limited features for a maximum of 20 users. Their Enterprise plan starts at $12 per user per month.

14-day free trial

From $13.95/user/month

Need expert help selecting the right Project Scheduling Software?

We’ve joined up with the software comparison platform Crozdesk.com to assist you in finding the right software. Crozdesk’s Project Scheduling Software advisors can create a personalized shortlist of software solutions with unbiased recommendations to help you identify the solutions that best suit your business's needs. Through our partnership you get free access to their bespoke software selection advice, removing both time and hassle from the research process.

It only takes a minute to submit your requirements and they will give you a quick call at no cost or commitment. Based on your needs you’ll receive customized software shortlists listing the best-fitting solutions from their team of software advisors (via phone or email). They can even connect you with your selected vendor choices along with community negotiated discounts. To get started, please complete the form below:

Summary Of The Best Project Planning Tools

Tool Free Option Price
1
monday.com

Best for Google users (G Suite and so on)

14-day free trial

From $10/user/month Visit Website
2
Runn

Best for IT and software teams

14-day free trial

From $10/person managed/month Visit Website
3
GanttPRO

Best for building project plans and timelines with online Gantt charts

14-day free trial

From $7.99/user/month (billed annually) Visit Website
4
Zoho Projects

Best for team scalability

10-day free trial

From $5/user/month Visit Website
5
Kantata (formerly Mavenlink + Kimble)

Best for resource management and planning

Demo available

Pricing upon request Visit Website
6
Forecast

Best for managing your projects, resources, and finances in one

14-day free trial

From $29/user/month Visit Website
7
Paymo

Best planning software for small & medium teams

Free plan available

From $4.95/user/month Visit Website
8
Kintone

Best for building custom project workflows

30 days free trial

From $24/user/month Visit Website
9
ProWorkflow

Best for mobile users

14-day free trial

From $20/user/month Visit Website
10
nutcache

Best time tracker + planner

14-day free trial

From $13.95/user/month Visit Website

Other Project Planning Tools Options

Here are a few more that didn’t make the top list. If you need additional suggestions for handy project planning tools, check these out.

  1. CROOW

    Best for workflow customization, automation, and visibility into overall business performance

  2. Primetric

    Best for IT service companies & digital agencies

  3. Teamwork

    Best for real-time metrics, KPIs, deliverables

  4. Wrike

    Best collaborative project planning tool

  5. Hive

    Best in-app communication tools

  6. Celoxis

    Best for its Microsoft suite integrations and client portal

  7. GoodDay

    Best for team productivity and collaboration

  8. Walling

    Best for visually planning project ideas and tasks side by side

  9. Kissflow

    Best collaborative project planning tool

  10. ProjectManager.com

    Best timeline builder

Not looking for project planning tools? Check out our other lists of top project management software and other tools:

  1. Need help building, storing, and processing timesheets? Try these 10 Best Time Tracking Software For Employees.
  2. Need tools for managing a smaller project team? Try these 10 Best Project Management Software For Small Business.
  3. Have concerns about risk management? Try some of the Best Risk Management Software for Enterprises and Midsize Businesses.

What are project planning tools?

Project planning tools are software products that help you organize your projects by giving you features that support the planning phase of the project management lifecycle. Think of a drag-and-drop interface where you can build a Gantt chart to visually represent your workflow.

Further, the features offered go beyond task management and go into resource and budget management. There will be modules to help you view your project resources and their workload so you can assign work accordingly. Also, you can use custom fields in table views to record budget amounts and avoid losing track of money.

Here are a few things we’ve written to help you plan like a rockstar.

Related Read: What Is Gantt Chart Software?

What Do You Think?

I would love to know your thoughts on this list and how it relates to the tools you currently use. If you have any other tools you recommend for project planning, make sure you mention them in the comments.


Finally, if you want to get better at project planning, you may learn a trick or two by subscribing to our Insider Membership newsletter, which is delivered to your inbox every week.

By Ben Aston

I’m Ben Aston, a digital project manager and founder of thedpm.com. I've been in the industry for more than 15 years working in the UK at London’s top digital agencies including Dare, Wunderman, Lowe and DDB. I’ve delivered everything from film to CMS', games to advertising and eCRM to eCommerce sites. I’ve been fortunate enough to work across a wide range of great clients; automotive brands including Land Rover, Volkswagen and Honda; Utility brands including BT, British Gas and Exxon, FMCG brands such as Unilever, and consumer electronics brands including Sony.

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