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The 16 Best Free Smartsheet Alternatives of 2021

Table of Content

     

    Smartsheet is a project management tool that essentially relies on a spreadsheet format for managing projects and tasks. Introduced in 2006, with a major redesign in 2010, the platform serves as a single systematic and flexible solution for all the task management needs of a team. This article will review the best free Smartsheet alternatives that can help your business and personal gigs.

     

    Being a spreadsheet program at its core, Smartsheet already calls for multiple alternatives. Although it has extensive features that cater to the project management needs, let’s be realistic! There’s not a single tool that can be the gold standard for fulfilling all the project management needs of an organization. The same goes for Smartsheet, because for a few reasons.

     

    Why You Should Look for Free Smartsheet Alternatives

     

    Time Tracking

     

    Being able to track the time associated with each and every project is one of the most critical aspects of project management software. Smartsheet doesn’t come with extensive time tracking features. You cannot track the time you’ve spent on a particular task, and that tends to be one of the biggest drawbacks of the tool.

     

    Real-time Chat

     

    For timely collaboration among team members, real-time chat features or comments within tasks should be a core element. Smartsheet doesn’t come with real-time chat options for team members to collaborate on the project progress.

     

    Limited Functionality of Reports

     

    Although Smartsheet does have a reporting feature, it’s too complicated to use. For a fully functional project report, users have to go through multiple steps and personally create a report. This is time-consuming, as well as frustrating.

     

    Expensive

     

    In contrast with the majority project management tools available freely in the market, Smartsheet can come off as quite expensive. With only a 30 days free trial period and upgrades starting from $14, Smartsheet calls for other cheaper alternatives to consider.

     

    Due to these limitations, we’ve gathered some of the tried and tested free Smartsheet alternatives for you to choose from. They are:

     

    1. nTask

     

    project_management_hero

     

    The top spot on this list of free Smartsheet alternatives goes to nTask.

     

    A versatile project management software equipped with an intelligent toolset that caters perfectly to all individual as well as team task management needs. With a simple user interface and smartly developed features, nTask facilitates seamless storing, processing, and monitoring of project performance – all under one roof.

     

    • App Logo
    • Simpler project management with nTask, absolutely free!

      5 workspaces, task management, project Gantt charts, bug and issue tracking and a lot more.

     

    Key Features

     

    Pros

    • Meetings Management to effectively execute meetings
    • Issues and Risks management to tackle their occurrence likelihood
    • Built-in Gantt charts for timely reporting
    • User-friendly interface
    • Powerful task filters
    • Free forever version and affordable upgrade

     

    Cons

    • Kanban boards for workflow visualization is currently not available (underworks)
    • Integration with multiple apps to avoid constant switching between apps (underworks)
    • Limited functionality of auto-generating Gantt charts
    • Feature of chat within tasks not available, however, comments can be made

     

    Pricing

    • Free – Unlimited free workspaces, unlimited tasks, unlimited meetings, 5 MBs file attachment size, 100 MBs of storage space, issues tracking, timesheets.
    • Pro – Starting at $1 user per month, unlimited projects, and Gantt Charts.

     

    2. Basecamp

     

    Basecamp

     

    Next up on our list of free Smartsheet alternatives is Basecamp. It’s an online project management tool providing collaboration solutions to small and medium-sized organizations. Coming with a diverse toolset, Basecamp tries to provide a single platform to users for effectively managing their projects.

     

    Key Features

    • To-do lists management
    • Tasks scheduling
    • Messages board
    • Group chat rooms
    • Clients portal
    • Hill charts
    • Project reports
    • Documents management
    • Notifications
    • Search filters

     

    Pros

    • Simple user-friendly design
    • Simple to-do list management
    • Easy drag and drop for uploading files
    • Check-in questions for status updates
    • Clients access portal
    • Personalized themes for workspaces

     

    Cons

    • Basic project management features
    • No recurring tasks management
    • No time-tracking with activities
    • No built-in chat features. Campfire sign up is required for availing it
    • Does not offer functionality for project budgeting

     

    Pricing

    • $99 per month – unlimited users, unlimited projects, all features, 500GB of file storage

     

    Basecamp comes with a free trial of 30 days.

     

    See also:

    The Top 10 Free Basecamp Alternatives To Use in 2020


     

    3. Jira

     

    Jira

     

    Third, on our list of free Smartsheet alternatives is Jira. Considered a #1 software chosen by agile teams for software development, Jira makes a pretty strong contender for Smartsheet.  The tool allows teams to use workflow mapping and agile reporting techniques to make sure projects are executed efficiently.

     

    Key Features

    • Kanban and Scrum boards
    • Powerful reports
    • Customizable dashboards
    • Project roadmaps
    • Custom search filters
    • Sprint management
    • Backlog management
    • Bug and issues tracker
    • Third-party application integrations

     

    Pros

    • Advanced project management features for Agile teams
    • Numerous progress tracking reports
    • Customizable Scrum boards
    • User stories mapping
    • Affordable plans

     

    Cons

    • Requires extensive configuration to set up
    • Complex functionality
    • Steep learning curve
    • No free version

     

    Pricing

    • Up to 10 users: $10 monthly
    • 11-100 users: $7 per user/month
    • More than 100 users: upon request

     

    Jira offers a free trial of 7 days.

     

    See also:

    Top 19 Jira Alternatives for Smarter Project Management in 2021


     

    4. Airtable

     

    Airtable

     

    Airtable is a cloud-based project management software that combines the functionality of a task management tool and a spreadsheet to provide the most user-friendly experience while managing projects. As a free Smartsheet alternatives, Airtable comes with a pleasing design and easy interface to help users have fun while getting things done.

     

    Key Features

    • Multiple views for tasks management
    • Video chat with team members
    • Time tracking with activities
    • Pre-built project templates
    • Issues and bug tracker
    • Powerful project sorting filters
    • Client project tracker
    • Safe file attachments
    • Multiple third-party application integrations

     

    Pros

    • Light and user-friendly interface
    • Clutter-free features
    • Users can create multiple databases in one location
    • Compatibility with multiple devices
    • Numerous built-in project templates

     

    Cons

    • Primarily a data storage and visualization tool
    • Limited functionality of time tracker
    • No meeting management features
    • Limited functionality of progress reports

     

    Pricing

    • Free: unlimited bases, 2GB attachment space with each base, other essential features
    • Plus: $10 per user/month, unlimited bases, 5GB attachment space, other essential features
    • Pro: $20 per user/month, unlimited bases, 20GB attachment space, essential and advanced features
    • Enterprise: upon request, unlimited bases, 1000 GB attachment space, essential and advanced features with maximum support and admin controls

     

    Also Read:

    The Best Free Airtable Alternatives of 2021


     

    5. Clarizen

     

    Clarizen

     

    The 5th tool in our collection of best free Smartsheet alternatives is Clarizen. It’s a collaborative work management solution designed and developed for enterprises. Providing an option to configure workflows according to the team needs, Clarizen facilitates a highly customizable and advanced platform for project management.

     

    Key Features

    • Projects dashboard
    • Project portfolio management
    • Resources management
    • Timesheets
    • Documents management
    • Expense sheets
    • Risk analysis and control
    • Gantt charts
    • Project financial management

     

    Pros

    • Easily customizable
    • Advanced functionality
    • Advanced project planning
    • Web portals for multiple teams
    • Integrations for easy collaboration

     

    Cons

    • Can be too advanced for small teams
    • Too many complicated features
    • Not too user-friendly
    • Expensive in comparison to other tools

     

    Pricing

    • Enterprise Edition: $45 per user per month
    • Unlimited Edition: $60 per user per month

     

    6. Asana

     

    Asana

     

    One of the top free Smartsheet alternatives that project managers love is Asana. Regarded as one of the most popular tools when it comes to project management, Asana allows you to smartly organize and tackle your project details with maximum efficiency.

     

    The tool comes with multiple project templates, designed to serve diverse team types and their project needs. With multiple third-party application integrations, Asana makes sure you get everything done without switching applications.

     

    Key Features

    • Tasks and subtasks management
    • Kanban boards for indicating workflows
    • Native project templates
    • Project timeline
    • File attachments and task comments
    • Milestone tracking
    • Backlog management
    • Sprint management
    • Issues and bug tracking
    • Third-party application access

     

    Pros

    • Advanced tasks management
    • Built-in project templates for quickly getting started
    • Project timeline management
    • Effective for large teams and multiple projects
    • Dedicated feature set for agile teams, like backlog management

     

    Cons

    • Native time tracking missing
    • Multiple assignees missing
    • No risks management
    • No meeting management
    • Limited features in the free version

     

    Pricing

    • Basic: for teams who are just gearing up
    • Premium: $9.99 per user/month for teams to create project plans effectively
    • Business: $19.99 per user/month for large teams
    • Enterprise: customizable plan for organizations who need more security and controls

    7. Redbooth

     

    Redbooth

     

    Redbooth is a project management software that comes with a dynamic feature set, enabling teams to manage their projects successfully from initiation till project closure. This free Smartsheet alternatives comes with a beautiful and intuitive user interface.

     

    Through the dashboard, you can quickly view your urgent tasks and take a quick glance over your project performance. Furthermore, remote teams can take advantage of HD video conferencing mode to hold virtual team meetings whenever required.

     

    Key Features

    • Kanban boards for workflow visualization
    • Dashboards to get a glimpse of project performance
    • Gantt charts to schedule projects
    • HD video calls functionality
    • Multiple assignees of tasks
    • Chat and file sharing within tasks
    • Resource workload management
    • Third-party application integrations

     

    Pros

    • Simple user-interface
    • Gantt charts for project scheduling
    • Video calls for geographically dispersed teams
    • Quick team collaboration features
    • Free version available

     

    Cons

    • Very limited features in the free version
    • Automatic time tracking with tasks is missing
    • No issues or risks management
    • Can seem too simplistic for enterprise-level project management

     

    Pricing

    • Free: basic project management features for up to 2 users and 2 workspaces
    • Pro: $9 per user/month – unlimited workspaces and HD video meetings, among other features
    • Business: $15 per user/month – resource management, and much more
    • Enterprise: customizable plan with maximum controls

     

    8. Mavenlink

     

    Mavenlink

     

    If you’re looking for more than just basic project management, Mavenlink is the right Smartsheet alternative for you. Coming with a solid feature set of project management, resource management, business intelligence, and team collaboration, Mavenlink seems to cater it all.

     

    Through Gantt charts, you can plan and monitor your project performance effectively and streamline operations along the way. Additionally, your project portfolio facilitates in evaluating your overall project health in a better way.

     

    Key Features

    • Built-in project templates
    • Gantt charts for project scheduling
    • Resource management
    • Project portfolio management
    • Team conversations and mentions
    • Profit margin calculations
    • Timesheets for tracking time
    • Invoice management for billing clients
    • Customized project access and permissions

     

    Pros

    • A comprehensive solution for projects
    • Ability to set up multiple project templates
    • Powerful third-party integrations
    • Extensive reporting capabilities
    • Robust resource management features

     

    Cons

    • Advance reporting only available with Premier and Enterprise plans
    • The tool has a steep learning curve
    • Automatic time tracker is missing
    • No mobile applications at the moment

     

    Pricing

    • Team: $19 per month for 5 users – basic task management and team collaboration features
    • Professional: $39 per user/month – task management, Gantt charts, critical path analysis, among other features
    • Premier: custom pricing – advanced project management and resource planning features
    • Enterprise: custom pricing – all features

     

    9. Celoxis

     

    Celoxis

     

    An enterprise-level project management software, Celoxis is a powerful Smartsheet alternative you can get your hands on. Perfect for medium to large-sized organizations, Celoxis helps manage complex projects through native solutions.

     

    These solutions range from easy project planning to more advanced resource management. Through the customizable project portfolio dashboards, you can easily monitor your project KPIs and make informed decisions faster.

     

    Key Features

    • Gantt charts for project scheduling
    • Project portfolio management
    • Profit and expense tracking, along with revenue forecasting
    • Online discussions for team collaboration
    • Automatic task timers for tracking time
    • Activity stream to keep everyone updated
    • Custom dashboards to get quick insights
    • Multi-language support

     

    Pros

    • Full-featured project management solution
    • Wide variety of project reports
    • Available in multiple languages
    • Array of third-party integrations available
    • Customizable dashboards which make monitoring easy

     

    Cons

    • No in-app chat functionality
    • No free plan available
    • The interface can seem overwhelming for beginners

     

    Pricing

    • On Cloud: $25 per user/month – minimum 5 users
    • On-Premise: $450 per user, billed once – minimum 5 users

     

    10. Freedcamp

     

    freedcamp

     

    Freedcamp is a free Smartsheet alternative that makes the managing of multiple tasks quick and easy. The tool comes with an internal wiki to keep all the organization’s data in one place to be accessed at any time you want.

     

    Through milestones, you can create significant project events and give your team something to look forward to over the course of project lifecycle. Moreover, with the issue tracker, your project issues can be easily tracked and resolved within due time.

     

    Key Features:

    • Tasks and subtasks management
    • Pre-built project templates for recurring projects
    • Kanban visualization of workflow
    • Gantt charts for project planning
    • Milestones to track your project’s significant events
    • Wiki for keeping all your team data in one place
    • Time tracking, along with invoice generation
    • Issue tracker for tracking and managing issues
    • Third-party application integrations

     

    Pros

    • Best suited for teams working on multiple projects
    • Easy to set up, with a user-friendly interface
    • Free plan available
    • Option to set personal tasks private
    • Streamlined team collaboration through discussions

     

    Cons

    • Limited free features
    • Time tracking only available in paid plans
    • No dedicated meeting management module
    • No risks management

     

    Pricing

    • Free: unlimited projects, users, tasks, and storage, along with some integrations
    • Minimalist: $1.49 per user/month – unlimited users, integrations, recurring tasks, and more
    • Freelancer: $3.49 per user/month – all the core task management features with calendar sharing
    • Business: $7.49 per user/month – all the advanced features with weekly backups
    • Enterprise: $16.99 per user/month – all features with daily backups

     

    11. Scoro

     

    Scoro

     

    Scoro comes as another handy recommendation on our best & free Smartsheet alternatives list. It is a robust solution with an ability to combine all kinds of features needed for increased workflow.

     

    Side effects of using Score are optimal performance, contact management, team collaboration, multiple billing modules, and vice versa. Of course, Scoro is not a perfect task management tool. There are some setbacks here n’ there.

     

    However, as a Smartsheet alternative, Scoro brilliantly works to fulfill all end-user requirements.

     

    Key Features:

    • Manage financials for each project through different billing options.
    • Compare billable and non-billable work hours to estimate expenses.
    • Collaborate with team members and stakeholders through 3rd party app integrations.
    • Offers a beautiful interactive dashboard with a minimalistic design.

     

    Pros

    • Bigger project overview at a glance
    • See visual progress with a timeline
    • Task automation
    • Monitor resources
    • Can use it as a CRM tool

     

    Cons

    • No free plan
    • Costly for startups
    • A bit complicated for new users
    • Difficult to implement agile methodology

     

    Pricing:

    • Scoro’s base plan starts at $26 per month.

     

    12. Bitrix24

     

    bitrix 24

     

    We have mentioned Bitrix24 a couple of times in our other write-ups. Overall, it is a well-rounded task and project management program. The tool is overlayed with several social media collaboration features, communication management, file sharing, tasks, and contact monitoring functions.

     

    Bitrix24 developers reportedly release new updates to keep up with the competition. To that end, they also listen to customer feedback and try to add many user-requested features to offer a more personalized experience to power users.

     

    As a free Smartsheet alternative, Bitrix24 comes packed with followed features.

     

    Key Features:

    • Social intranet for internal communication.
    • Gantt charts for understanding project timelines and deliverables.
    • Employee workload, billing, and process management.
    • Integrates with Telephone for contact management.

     

    Pros

    • Easy to organize documents
    • Simple all-in-one solution for work management
    • Free plan available
    • Easy to streamline activities

     

    Cons

    • Users complained about some functionality errors
    • Complicated for beginners
    • Not so user-friendly UI/UX

     

    Pricing:

    • Bitrix24 is free to use at the cost of limited functionality.
    • Paid plans start at $48 with an addition of unlimited features, extra storage space, and much more!

     

    13. Workzone

     

    workzone

     

    Another fine example on this list would be Workzone. The application is an amazing project management tool that helps with your document management efficiently.

     

    Created in 2002, Workzone is recognized for a number of features. Some of the key highlights are appended below.

     

    Key Features

    • Task Dependencies
    • Automated reports
    • Email alerts
    • File versioning
    • Full-text search
    • Group calendar
    • Individual to-do lists
    • Project templates
    • Approvals workflow
    • Custom branding
    • Expense tracking
    • Flexible permissions
    • Gantt chart
    • Image markup
    • Project request forms
    • Projects overview dashboard

     

    Pros

    • Easy to use
    • Excellent customer support
    • The amazing project management application
    • Overall a great Smartsheet alternative

     

    Cons

    • The search functionality needs to be improved

     

    Pricing

    • Contact the company for a price quote

     

    14. Trello

     

    Trello

     

    Another great alternative to Smartsheet is Trello, which uses interactive boards to keep track of all of the different projects and the tasks related to them.

     

    Key Features

    • Easy uploading of files and attachments
    • Data filtering
    • Card records archive
    • Upload attachments
    • Information retrieval and back-up
    • SSL encryption of data
    • A quick overview of the task or board entity, on the front and back of cards

     

    Pros

    • All of the internal and external stakeholders (vendors or clients) can be invited to have a look at the work-boards
    • All of the information can be converted into a PDF document which you can print out to take a second look in the future
    • All of the information you create or interact with can be synced across all of the devices that you use

     

    Cons

    • A limited number of features if you want to use it as your project management daily driver software
    • Especially weak to make estimates about the different dependencies and budgets associated with the project
    • The reporting features that let your team know about the problems regarding the project are quite weak

     

    Pricing

    • Paid subscription starts at $12.50/month

     


     

    15. Wrike

     

    Wrike Home

     

    One of the best project management software out there, Wrike is an incredible tool that you can use to track and manage all of your tasks and processes related to your project.

     

    You can also track the reports related to your projects and with a push of a button, you can report all of those results to anyone you want.

     

    The software is quite customizable, but if you are a mid-tier business or a fully-fledged enterprise-level behemoth, then this project management software is going to do wonders for you.

     

    Key Features

    • Forms management
    • Planning tools
    • Progress reports
    • Project time tracking
    • Project workflow
    • Reporting & statistics
    • Role-based permissions
    • Shared workspace
    • Task management
    • Task scheduling
    • Personal dashboard
    • Prioritizing
    • Project reporting
    • Project tracking
    • Real-time reporting
    • Resource management
    • Secure data storage
    • Subtasks
    • Task planning
    • Task tracking

     

    Pros

    • Integration with many different tools and apps that are used in the organizational paradigm
    • Users can collaborate to increase productivity
    • Amazing Gantt charting and custom timelines, so that the team can work how they want and when they want

     

    Cons

    • The software is so extensive that sometimes users have complained that they have a hard time understanding it all

     

    Pricing

    • There is a free trial of the software available to be used before you make a purchase
    • The paid subscription of the software starts at $9.80/month

     


     

    16.  Microsoft Project

     

    Microsoft project - best project management software

     

    One of the leading pioneers in project management is the software Microsoft project, which has been a part of the market since the start.

     

    The software is an incredible tool for project managers to track and manage their tasks and processes related to the projects that they are working on.

     

    Key Features

    • Anywhere access
    • Burndown charts
    • Communicate in real-time
    • Discover and share information
    • Give effective presentations
    • Mobile task and time management
    • Out-of-the-box reports
    • Project management
    • Anticipate change
    • Built-in templates
    • Collaboration tools
    • Deliver projects successfully
    • Gantt charts
    • Milestones
    • Multiple timelines
    • Portfolio optimization
    • Project planning

     

    Pros

    • Cloud-based online project management software
    • Mobile apps and a desktop version of this application are available so that you can manage all of your work on the go
    • Includes time and resource tracking as well

     

    Cons

    • Not easy to learn
    • Not easy for smaller projects to make a mark for themselves in the interface, because they are overshadowed by the bigger projects

     

    Pricing

    • A trial version of the application is available so that if you want to check the software out before making a purchase, you can do so
    • The paid subscription of the application starts at $10/month

     

    See also:

    Top 14 Microsoft Project Alternatives of 2021

     

    SmartSheet Common Questions

     

    1. How Many Rows of Data can Smartsheet handle?

     

    Smartsheet is an incredible software that is capable of handling over 20,000 rows in a single sheet.

     

    2. Is Smartsheet like Excel?

     

    When it comes to core functionality, the two software are surprisingly similar as they are both “sheets” based data collectors, and have been used for general category project management.

     

    But where Smartsheet takes the lead is the tracking feature to track the progress and status of the project that you are working on.

     

    3. What is the Pricing Model of Smartsheet?

     

    Here is the pricing model of Smartsheet.

    • There is a free trial available for anyone who wants to try the software before making the purchase
    • The paid subscriptions start at $14/month

     

    Conclusion

     

    We have listed some of the best Smartsheet alternatives that you can start using right now.

     

    But don’t forget that there are different software available for different business genres. You need to be thorough when you are searching for the best option.

     

    On that note, compare different features and price ranges that the apps have – and scale them against the requirements criteria. Weigh out the pros and cons, and you will eventually get a handy tool for years to come.

     

    What are your favorite free Smartsheet alternatives? Share your recommendations in the comments below.

     

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