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12 Best Task Management Tools Built for Startups

best task management tools, ntask

Running a startup is no piece of cake. There is a constant hammer of uncertainty that only adds to the already existing pressures of limited budget and scarce resources. Each week as the business of startups grow, so does the challenges that come with this growth.

As a Project Manager, you can only do so much, monitor and manage team collaboration, maintain time-accountability and assess the progress of your projects. And even then, things can get clunky and fall out of place. To foster an organized workflow, most organizations acquire the help of a nifty task management tool.

Because why let everything fall on your mortal human-shoulders when you have a wide array of automated friends to share your burden.

Why Use a Task Management Tool?

Before we move onto helping you choose the best task management tools, let’s skim through the reasons your emerging business could use one.

  1. Centralize team workflow and communication on a single platform
  2. Maintain and monitor team accountability for a myriad of tasks with just a few clicks
  3. Practice efficient time tracking of all your team members, at all times with an automated system
  4. Create a central hub for document storage, sharing, and retrieval
  5. Avoid time wastage in manually updating and organizing project schedules
  6. Schedule and attend virtual meetings from anywhere in the world

If you have never used a tool for task management, you will find yourself swimming in a bottomless sea of software to choose from. Which also means, you are equally likely to find yourself investing in the wrong software, which may sound like a good idea at the start but would turn out to be a big source of disappointment.

What Do the Best Task Management Tools Offer?

Here are 6 key-criteria you should refer to before investing in one:

  1. Does it provide issue tracking and risk assessment for each task or project that you create?
  2. Does it facilitate real-time communication with team members for clear & transparent management?
  3. Does it allow users the freedom to customize their workspace according to what best suits their preference?
  4. Is it visually simple to understand and flexible to use for all sorts of teams?
  5. Does it offer a generous set of features at a low price?
  6. Does it consist of time tracking features to ensure on-time project delivery?

If hopefully by now, you’re convinced that your startup could use the expertise of a management tool, we have reviewed a list of 7 best task management tools to help you manage teamwork and increase your productivity.

1. nTask

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nTask is a newcomer in the fierce market of software. It was designed to eliminate the frustration caused by overly complexed tools that are often abandoned by the users halfway down the road. Its specialty lies in its straightforward, elementary format that reduces the learning curve of users belonging to any team type.

Prominent Features:

  • Visually appealing views of tasks in the form of List, Grid, and Calendar. Assort and manage how you view tasks using a set of filters
  • Create and link multiple tasks to projects in one click
  • Create checklists and give descriptions to tasks
  • Give your tasks individual status, priority and a due date
  • Manually log hours that automatically update in corresponding timesheets
  • View task percentage progress via self-generating progress meter
  • Create task recurrence on a daily, weekly, monthly basis
  • Add files, images, and comments to each task for effective communication
  • Export task details to external sources via a public link or email
  • Use the color palette to color-code your tasks
  • Self-generating Gantt Charts to help you give a roadmap view of your task timelines
  • View task history in Activity Log
  • Assign tasks to multiple assignees for dividing the workflow
  • Conduct and manage minutes of meetings with defined agendas, discussion points, and follow-up actions

Integrations:

  • Slack, Zapier, Google Calendar, Outlook, Yahoo! Mail. (coming soon)

What will it cost you:

  • Free Plan – 5 workspaces, 200 MBs of storage.
  • Pro Plan – $2.99, Unlimited everything.

What’s missing:

  • Does not let you create sub-tasks or task dependencies
  • Does not have a real-time team chat

2. Teamwork

Evident from its name, Teamwork is one of the best task management tools focusing on streamlining team collaboration and effort. It offers an impressive tier of project management features that extend from simple task management to time tracking, billing and a lot more. Whether you work with a group of small teams or large, Teamwork will help you strengthen the different forts of your workspace, all under one roof.

Prominent Features:

  • Create multiple tasks and divide them into easily manageable sub-tasks
  • Track and log time individually on each task using the digital timer
  • Log billable and non-billable hours on each task using the digital timer
  • Add estimates and work progress next to each task
  • Set priority status, tags, reminders, and labels for each task
  • Create task dependencies and recurring tasks
  • Import tasks from Excel
  • Link tasks to Milestones created separately on Teamwork. You can also link tasks to Teamwork Calendar
  • Manage who to notify and when by controlling Notification Settings
  • Communicate with Team members using Comment and Chat Feature Task Board

Integrations:

  • Basecamp, Trello, Slack, YouTube, Infusionsoft, Dropbox, Gmail, Everhour

What will it cost you:

  • Free Plan – 5 User, 100 MB storage.
  • Pro Plan – $9 user/month. 100 GB file storage.

What’s missing:

  • Does not provide Issue tracking or reporting within Task Management

3. Droptask

Approved into use by some of the most influential names across the world, such as Harvard University, Coca-Cola, and Disney, Droptask brings a pleasant twist in the framework of task management. Designed with visually appealing Venn diagrams that permit color customization, it has the shortest learning curve compared to any task management software out there.

Prominent Features:

  • Alternate between fun-inducing canvas view or a workflow view of a task
  • Add notes, assignees, tags, checklists, reminders, and attachments to each task
  • Choose and manage urgency, priority, progress, and effort of a task with a slide bar
  • Access and view task history at any time you want
  • Create separate category or project, then use Drag & Drop option to relocate task into either one
  • Monitor and manage task notifications for each member

Integrations:

Dropbox, Google Calendar, Outlook, Google Drive

What will it cost you:

  • Free Plan – Unlimited users. Unlimited workspaces.
  • Individual Plan – $5/month, single user, all features

What’s missing:

  • No issue tracker to report and identify issues related to tasks
  • No Gantt Chart views to display roadmap of task timelines
  • No timesheets to keep track of employee hours

4. ProofHub

ProofHub may be a tad expensive, but with irresistible perks like unified communication, email project management, and a multilingual interface, this versatile software is beloved and used by thousands. Similar to nTask, ProofHub has the easiest platform to manage team collaboration and deliver projects on time.

Prominent Features:

  • Define workflow, with flexible Kanban boards that provide List view and board view of tasks
  • Track time spent on each task using a digital timer or manually log the hours
  • Assign custom roles to members for each task
  • Switch and move tasks into varying stages depending on the project life cycle
  • Visit infographic column on the task board to get a quick analytical summary of tasks in progress, tasks completed and total tasks
  • Create Sub-tasks and assign to various team members
  • Change interface language from English to either French, Spanish, German, Polish or Portuguese
  • View roadmaps of task and project timelines in holistic Gantt Charts

Integrations:

  • FreshBooks, Dropbox, Google Drive, Box.

What will it cost you:

  • $89/ month- Unlimited projects and users

What’s missing:

  • Does not offer issue or risk tracking

5. ActiveCollab

ActiveCollab is another powerful tool perfect for organizing workflow for small teams and businesses in general. It has been around the block for a decade, and because of its smooth and flexible usability, it has rendered a favorite spot among numerous academic institutions and government organizations. You can manage every aspect of your project be it time tracking, team collaboration or invoicing.

Active Collab is a cloud-based app that functions on multiple browsers and can be installed on a personal server as well.

Prominent Features:

  • Create and organize tasks on a single board and filter them into due dates, labels or people
  • Choose assignees for each task, add reminders, leave comments and attach files for your team to share
  • Assemble your tasks in Gantt-like view, Column view or list view
  • Sync your calendar with event-specific tasks
  • Track the total hours spent on a task with the use of a stopwatch
  • Generate reports for the number of open tasks

Integrations:

  • Slack, Quickbooks, Google Drive, Dropbox, Asana, Zapier.

What will it cost you:

  • $25/ month. 5 users. 5GB space

What’s missing:

  • No sub-tasks, no task dependencies
  • No issue or risk tracking

 6. Trello

One of the best task management tools that need no real introduction, Trello is the very definition of basic task management. Trello’s specialty lies in its interactively simple Kanban boards that assist quick drag & drop ability of tasks from one column to another. The incredibly generous Free plan of Trello that offers unlimited members, boards and checklists are what has granted Trello a golden spot in the hearts of small businesses and setups.

 Prominent Features:

  • Flexible Kanban boards that store created tasks in the form of cards, boards and lists
  • Users can create checklists within the cards and toss in their vote for each performance being carried out within the card
  • Email-to-board feature allows users to convert their emails into boards and cards
  • Assign tasks, attach files, add descriptions and progress checklists to each individual board containing a task
  • Add comments with emojis on boards and cards to communicate real-time with the rest of the team

Integrations:

  • Google Hangouts, Zapier, Google Calendar, GitHub

What will it cost you:

  • Free Plan – Unlimited users and unlimited boards.
  • Business Plan – $9.99/month – 250 MB storage, multiple integrations, added data security

What’s missing:

  • No time tracking available for tasks
  • No reporting formats available for task summaries
  • No task dependencies or recurring tasks
  • No Gannt Chart view of boards and tasks

7. Nifty

Primarily a project management tool, Nifty is gradually becoming a strong name to remember in this crowded market of task management tools. It provides users with a diverse array of features that assist both team communication as well as project management. The meager pricing plan of Nifty is a big business-pleaser for small teams looking to invest in something affordable to enhance team productivity.

Prominent Features:

  • Kanban Board view that splits and divides tasks into three categories of New tasks, In-progress and Completed
  • A visual overview of task deadline and milestones on a roadmap
  • File storage with separate categories of spreadsheets, presentations, videos, audios, images and even code
  • Control and manage notifications for each member of the team
  • Filter tasks by user and milestones
  • Assign one or more members to a task
  • Commenting feature to assist team collaboration on tasks in addition to a discussion board

Integrations:

  • Google Drive, Google Calendar, Slack (coming soon)

What will it cost you:

  • Basic Plan – $8 per user/month. 5 GB space. Unlimited projects

What’s missing:

  • No Gantt Charts
  • No task Priority
  • No task Progress
  • No activity dashboard

8. Avaza

Gathering clientele, struggling with new deadlines and the processes of recruiting the right team can be a draining process. Startups need something that is not only affordable but also helps take care of multiple dimensions of team and project management.

That is where Avaza steps in. Avaza lines up in our list of best task management tools due to its comprehensive feature list that lets you manage projects, teams as well as the invoices. Simplify complex projects by breaking them down into manageable work through to-do lists, add details such as a start and end date and view them in Kanvan, Gantt charts or lists.

Starting with the initial quotation to processing invoices, with Avaza your financials are taken well care of, so you can focus entirely on your project delivery. Avaza makes payment and invoicing even easier through options that allow for conveying and monitoring detailed estimates to potential clients, which you can convert into a project with a few clicks.

It also offers an inbuilt client management module that includes a Time & Expenses tab and caters to direct payment through PayPal or Stripe.

Prominent Features:

  • Task management including group tasks
  • Multiple task views including Kanban, Gantt & List
  • Comments, file sharing and collaboration
  • Project management including project budgeting and project progress dashboards
  • Scrum project Burndown charts to assess work pressure
  • Activity feeds so your team can stay updated on the latest developments
  • Time tracking to stay on track
  • Timesheet entry and billing
  • Business reporting
  • Cloud accounting
  • Credit notes
  • Invoice, Quotation and Estimation
  • Support for split payments across invoices
  • Billing and expense management
  • Multi-currency expenses, invoicing, payments and credit notes
  • Online payments (partial payments, PayPal payment integration)
  • iOS and Android mobile apps

Integrations:

Zapier, SharpSpring, Stripe, Quickbooks, Xero, Basecamp, Trello, Zendesk, Insightly, Google Docs, Evernote, Jira, DropBox, MailChimp, Slack, Salesforce, and Github.

What will it cost you:

  • Avaza offers Free, Startup ($9.95 per month), Basic ($19.95 per month) and Business ($39.95 per month) plans.

What’s missing:

  • Mobile apps are not as intuitive and easy to navigate
  • Higher learning curve as takes time to get around it
  • No auto-update for new comments, which means you need to manually refresh page to keep check of new comments.
  • No issue management
  • No risk management
  • No meeting management

9. Wrike

A complete project and task management tool with growing number of subscribers with each passing day, Wrike holds its place as one of the best task management tools for teams of all sizes in all industries.

Offering a multitude of options with a sleek interface to manage projects encompassing complexity from basic to enterprise, this tool is one of the all-under-one-roof solutions. Beginning with a multiple pane view for viewing and monitoring information from different aspects, Wrike makes it easy to stay on top of your projects with little effort.

You can organize, prioritize and schedule tasks, engage team members through tagging, customize reports and collaborate with peers with just a few clicks. If you are just starting up, you can start free with a limited number of users and a fixed set of features. You can later upgrade your subscription as your team grows or as the workload and project lists expand requiring a vaster feature set.

Prominent Features:

  • Comprehensive task management feature set
  • Setting recurrent tasks
  • Task organization and prioritization
  • Team discussions in tasks
  • 3 pane project view for analysing data efficiently
  • Member engagement through tags
  • Customized reports
  • Interactive timeline (Gantt chart)
  • Real-time newsfeed
  • Document collaboration
  • Workload management
  • Time-tracking
  • Email integration
  • Meeting management
  • iPhone and Android apps

Integrations:

Salesforce, Box, JIRA, Google, GitHub, Octa, HipChat, Microsoft, Bitium, DropBox, EVernote, Zapier, Zendesk,Wufoo, Hubspot, Marketer, LinkedIn, Survey Monkey, and more.

What will it cost you:

Wrike offers multiple plans that comprise Free, Professional ($9.80 per user per month), Business ($ 24.80 per user per month), Marketers ($ 34.60 per user per month) and Enterprise (customized) plans.

What’s missing:

  • Higher learning curve
  • No progress completion percentage.
  • Time reporting option is not available.
  • Not as intuitive to work with and takes time to learn.
  • Task management in mobile apps is not as efficient.

10. Basecamp

With a focused but powerful set of features that can help you streamline your task management activities and that is affordable, Basecamp could be your next best task management tool. Basecamp provides channels for instant messaging and real time chat with groups and individuals, a good amount of file storage, to-do lists for sorting out work related tasks, scheduling work and sharing documents and other information.

Plus, it generates reports automatically based on your work summary so it saves you time. Also, instead of juggling between various payment plans, if you like to keep the payment plan fuss free, at a single standard rate, regardless of the team size, Basecamp offers you uncomplicated pricing.

This means you don’t need to juggle between saving expenses and growing your team.

Prominent Features:

  • To do lists for tasks
  • Scheduling tasks
  • Setting priorities for tasks
  • Task History
  • Project management including project templates
  • Use of calendar
  • Tracking hours spent on projects
  • Interactive Gantt Charts for projects
  • Create Teams/Groups
  • Messaging or Instant Messaging with individuals or groups
  • Document Management
  • Information and file sharing
  • Forums for team discussions
  • RSS Feed
  • Issue history
  • Resources allocation and forecasting

Integrations:

Unito.io To-Do Sync, Zapier, Automate.io, TaskClone, Project Buddy, Pleexy, Tick, Calamari, Hubstaff, Time Doctor, EverHour, Ganttify, MangoBoard, Workstack, SlickPlan, Bridge24, and more.

What will it cost you:

Basecamp offers one standard price at $99 per month regardless of the number of users, projects or teams.

What’s missing:

  • The details associated with each project is limited and scattered across the tool. This means it does not display information under a single view.
  • Limited features for task or project reporting.
  • Lack of options for task or project budgeting.
  • There is no built in time tracking, however, it can be integrated.
  • There is no customization option.
  • It does not offer an in-built instant messaging feature.
  • No search and filer options for files or to-do lists.
  • No risk management
  • No built in meeting management

11. Asana

A task management tool, Asana has come a long way and has made a name for itself as one of the best task management tools floating the market. You can create and manage tasks individually or assign them to projects as well as follow up on them through various devices.

Modules such as My Tasks list and Focus Mode help you focus on more important, more urgent tasks. Team members can easily collaborate with each other on the work at hand through comments, likes and follow options.

Plus, Asana makes it easy to share files and other information, and even tag a team member in the comments to involve them in a certain task. Asana saves you the need to use email or other third-party add-ons for collaboration.

Prominent Features:

  • Activity feed for centralized updates on the workflow and team activities
  • Add assignees to tasks
  • Add attachments to tasks
  • ‘Like’ tasks and activities through ‘hearts’
  • Automatic updates to inbox
  • Create custom calendars and views
  • Email bridge
  • My Tasks list and Focus Mode
  • Track tasks and add followers
  • Notifications and reminders
  • iPhone support, HTML5 mobile site
  • Multiple workspaces for handling multiple teams in parallel
  • Project Sections and Search Views
  • Real-time updates on tasks and projects
  • See team members’ tasks and priorities
  • Set goals, priorities, and due dates
  • Set project permissions
  • Project and task creation
  • Comment on tasks for further clarification
  • Task dependencies for streamlined workflow
  • Gantt Charts
  • Kanban support
  • Meeting minutes

Integrations:

CSV importer, Zapier, Dossier, TimeCamp, MS Office 365, Salesforce, Slack, DropBox, tray.io, Hipchat, Everhour, OneLogin, Box, and more.

What will it cost you:

Asana offers a Free, Premium ($ 9.99 per user per month) and Enterprise (customized) plan.

What’s missing:

  • No task assignment to multiple users or team members
  • Limited task status options
  • No option of converting comments to tasks and vice versa
  • Higher learning curve
  • Not so easy to keep track of tasks or other information due to its nested structure
  • No built in meeting management

12. Hitask

Hitask is a task management tool that is the perfect fit for start-ups. Comprising of multiple features placed neatly on a user friendly interface, this app makes it very easy to manage tasks and collaborate with teams.

Prominent Features:

  • Task creation from email to Hitask account
  • Email and mobile push notifications
  • Multiple reminders per task
  • Task assignment to team members
  • Notification on comments, due dates, missed deadlines and updated or completed tasks
  • Chat and instant messaging
  • Task comments for elaboration and added information
  • Hierarchy of tasks and sub-tasks forming nested task lists
  • Recurring tasks on a daily, weekly, monthly or yearly basis
  • Issue tracking by unique number
  • Task progress and spent time reporting
  • Multi-lingual support for multiple languages
  • Tags for categorizing items by contexts
  • Color tagging for tasks and projects
  • Data export option for Excel and other data format for external processing
  • IOS and android mobile apps

Integrations:

Google Calendar, iCalendar and Microsoft Outlook.

What will it cost you:

Hitask offers Team Free, Team Business ($ 25 per month) and Enterprise ($ 120 per month ) plans.

What’s missing:

  • No meeting management module
  • No Gantt charts
  • No user management
  • No document management
  • No built in meeting management

Although not every task management tool in our reviewed list meets each criterion necessary for selection, we leave the final decision up to you. Keeping your startup’s framework in mind, its limitations and your strengths as a project manager, select and find out which task management tool will best catapult your business.


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