Best free project management tools

Project management and collaboration are key business segments. Whether a big or small company, having effective software tools in place make all the difference when handling projects or tasks.

The tools listed here offer digital support through messaging, video conferencing, document collaboration, task management and a range of other features.

We've listed some of the top free project management tools that can help improve teamwork in your organisation.

Read next: The best enterprise collaboration software

Additional reporting by Hannah Williams.

ClickUp
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ClickUp

ClickUpis an all-in-one cloud-based project management and collaboration tool. It is available for businesses of all sizes and allows the user to designate tasks to specific groups or team members.

It offers over 1,000 integrations with various software applications such as Slack and Zapier. Users can also apply native time tracking to identify how long is being spent on projects and tasks.

ClickUp includes two-way sync to Google Calendar, with real-time updates to events synchronised as changes are made in the ClickUp app.

The tool offers a free forever plan, which includes 100MB storage for unlimited users, projects and spaces.

Paymo
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Paymo

Paymooffers a free project management software tool, which is effective for small teams and freelancers.

It also includes task management features, enabling users to create and reorder tasks as desired.

Paymo offers Kanban boards, reporting and file sharing features with an Adobe CC extension.

The free version is limited to one user and only 1GB of storage space. Pricing starts from $9.56 (£7.48) per user, a month for 50GB and more.

Bitrix24
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Bitrix24

Bitrix24is a collaboration and project management platform with added features for CRM, instant messaging and other social enterprise requirements.

The platform, which is best suited for small businesses, includes an online project workspace feature with an integrated planner, Gantt chart, Kanban board and custom features.

Bitrix24 also offers extranet access for external users, with the ability to archive public and private projects.

Its free plan is available for 12 users with 5GB online storage space.

Wrike
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Wrike

Wrikeis a project management tool, which includes embedded collaboration software features built for project managers.

It includes an activity stream, which enables users to micromanage tasks, view activities in chronological order and share with team members. It also has added security that can be customised to authorise who can access information.

Wrike offers live editing and file management, so all user changes appear in real-time. It also includes Gantt chart, resource management and time and budget tracking features.

The tool provides a free plan for five users and 2GB storage, suited for small teams. Priced plans start from $9.80 (£7.67) per user, a month for more users.

ProjectLibre
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ProjectLibre

ProjectLibreoffers free and open-source project management software, built as a standalone alternative for Microsoft Project by the founders of the discontinued OpenProj in 2012.

The tool offers a Gantt chart, network diagram, WBS/ RBS charts and other project management features for users around the world.

It is compatible with Microsoft Project 2003, 2007 and 2010 files and is available on Linux, Mac and Windows desktops. ProjectLibre is available in 19 languages including Arabic, Chinese, Italian and more.

ProjectLibre will release an enterprise cloud project management tool, with added extensions to the open-source tool such as multi-user and multi-projects that can be managed together in the cloud.

Smartsheet
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Smartsheet

Project management SaaS startup Smartsheet offers a tool that uses the familiar spreadsheet interface. It’s been valued at a staggering $850 million following a recent $52 million funding round in May 2017.

Although it’s a darling with VCs it does not come cheap: pricing starts at £11 per user per month when billed individually, £12 per user per month for a team with a minimum of three users, and £20 per user per month when billed annually for the business edition – minimum purchase three users.

For the individual tier you’ll get 10 sheets, a collaboration tool with attachments, reminders and notifications, and comments, plus a card system with view, Gantt charts, and a calendar view.

The team and business options offer administration rights including resource management and user and group management, plus custom colour and logos.

Smartsheet is integrated with G Suite, Office 365, Evernote, Dropbox, Box and Egnyte across all tiers with API calling also enabled.

But for the live data connector and Salesforce or Salesforce Service Cloud you’ll need to pay more starting at the Teams tier. An enterprise edition is also available, with pricing available on request. You can try Smartsheet for free here.

OpenProject
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OpenProject

OpenProjectis an open source project management tool that also operates a premium service for additional features. The standard FOSS flavour can be used for product roadmap and release planning, project planning and scheduling, time tracking, task management, team collaboration, agile/scrum and bug tracking.

If you pay for the cloud or enterprise editions (at €4.95 per user per month and €9.95 per user per month respectively) single sign-on is included as well as custom theme and logo, work package form configuration, multi-select custom fields and two factor authentication, as well as professional support including for installation.

Phabricator
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Phabricator

Specifically aimed at software developers, Phabricator is entirely free and open source if you want to install it locally, while a paid-for hosted option provides the user with automatic updates, maintenance and access to support.

You can host Git, Mercurial and Subversion repositories, and Phabricator supports post-committ auditing for primary workflow or with rule-based triggers. There are Trello-like workboards available and a document wiki as well, for example, for planning roadmaps. The hosted plan costs $20 per user per month, but you can sign up for a 30 day free trial before you commit.

Slite
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Slite

Sliteis a notes app for real-time content creation that neatly stores all your team's work in one place.

Slite sets itself apart from other document collaboration software by focusing on straightforward document maintenance and sharing among users. It does this by tracking the actions of each team member in a living record of internal information that everyone can access.

The tool was launched in 2018 with a freemium version that comes stacked with collaboration features, Slack integration and unlimited personal notes. Users are given 50 shared team notes to start, with unlimited private notes and 2GB of storage.

Hibox
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Hibox

Hiboxis a freemium business-focused chat and collaboration program that has task management and videoconferencing built in. The free edition is available for 10 users but with limited storage of only 2GB and slim task management and support features.

The $4 per user per month pro tool has 5GB in storage per user and extra task management tools as well as external app integrations (G suite, email, Dropbox and Box).

For the $8 per user per month enterprise edition you get all of the above plus priority support, audit logs, a custom login URL, and extra security settings and compliance message history.

Trello
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Trello

Trellois a great project management tool with a simple and intuitive interface. Projects are represented and organised using what the company refers to as boards or cards that contain to-do lists that users share in real-time.

Cards can represent an ongoing technical issue, project specs, people, architecture or anything else you can think of. Organise them any way you like and keep track of progress using its progress meter.

The free version of Trello includes unlimited boards, lists, cards, members, checklists and attachments and a file attachment limit of 10MB.

Slack
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Slack

Slackhas surpassed $5 billion in market value by becoming a popular business messing app, but continues to offer a freemium version for an unlimited number of users.

The free pricing plan will get you 10 third-party or custom integrations, a backlog of 10,000 of your most recent messages and 5GB file storage.

It also comes with the usual messaging capabilities, including one-to-one chats, channels and private group chats, but you will be limited to only one-to-one voice and video calls.

Essentially, Slack is a good communications tool but it might lack some of the project management features of others. For a communications tool, it is one of the best, although a little limited if you choose the free package.

In July 2018, Slack signed a strategic partnership with Atlassian which offers a migration path for Atlassian customers to access Slack features. The partnership led to Atlassian's announcement that Hipchat and Stride will be discontinued.

Freedcamp
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Freedcamp

Freedcampoffers admin tools, messaging and customer relationship management in a comprehensive collaboration platform. It also provides an abundance of free features including unlimited storage, a fully synced calendar and task lists.

The free plan includes 10MB upload size, time-tracking and discussion boards. Freedcamp's free plan isn't dissimilar to others listed but its business offering is around half the price.

Flock
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Flock

Flockhas gained a lot of traction since it launched in the UK in January 2017, attracting companies Accenture, Ricoh and Victorinox.

The free plan offers a clean and user-friendly interface with unlimited messages, channels, apps and users.

It also includes a searchable history of 10,000 of your team's most recent messages, five third-party apps and integrations and 10GB of storage.

MeisterTask
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MeisterTask

MeisterTaskis another solid project and task management tool. Key features include task-mapping, instant messaging, social channel integration, cloud storage integration, automation "actions" and task manager add-ons.

Users can create a project, add team members, assign tasks and follow the progress. It offers flexible project boards that adapt to your workflow, customisable dashboards and integration with apps including Slack, GitHub and Dropbox.

The free version supports unlimited projects and users, integration with two different apps and a file attachment limit of 20MB.

Harvest
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Harvest

Harvestis a time-tracking and reporting tool that provides real-time insight into the cost of projects and the use of staff time

Users can create invoices and accept payments online and store photos of receipts. The tool integrates with more than 100 apps, including Paypal, GitHub and Slack.

The free service offers unlimited invoices and estimates, phone and email support and bank-level security, but only for up to two projects and one user.

It is available for one user and two projects, whilst pricing starts from $12 (£9.41) a month for unlimited projects. Harvest offers a 30-day free trial.

Asana
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Asana

Asanais a project and workflow management tool created by Facebook's cofounder Dustin Moskovitz and former tech lead Justin Rosenstein. It lets users customise their interface to whatever configuration makes them most productive.

It's designed to help users track projects from start to finish by assigning tasks and to-do lists and setting milestones and deadlines. Progress can be tracked on tablets, smartphones or desktops.

The free version includes unlimited tasks, projects, and conversations, basic dashboards and basic search. The basic plan is available for teams of up to 15 people.

Google\'s G-suite
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Google's G-suite

G Suiteencompasses a collection of apps including Gmail, Hangouts, Calendars, Docs, Sheets, Slides that people can connect to together through Google Cloud. It's accessible on most devices that can connect to the internet.

Users can work on the same document simultaneously and see each other's edits in real-time. They can also create hangouts for group chats or video conferencing.

G Suite lacks the discussion boards and internal chat interface of other products on this list, but its document collaboration is truly excellent.

Redmine
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Redmine

Redmineis a free and open source project management application that is renowned for being flexible and highly-customisable.

The app can be intimidating for beginners, but if you can get used to its rough around the edges interface, you'll be able to take advantage of some powerful features. These include feeds and notification system, issue tracking, file management, time tracking and forums where users can discuss projects.

It also offers calendars and Gantt charts and integrates with multiple databases, platforms and plugins.

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