The 14 Best Free Smartsheet Alternatives of 2020

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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 2020


 

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 2020


 

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

 

See also:

Top 14 Microsoft Project Alternatives of 2020

 

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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