The human mind is great at generating ideas, not retaining them. Since time immemorial, we have been using task management solutions. From clay tablets, notepads, spreadsheets to the task manager apps. We have always needed help in keeping track of work.
The advent of cloud technology has fuelled the rapid growth of business software of all kinds, including task/project management tools. When we first started Taskworld in 2013, we could count the total number of task manager apps on our fingers. Now there are hundreds and hundreds of them.
If you are someone looking to try out a free task manager app for the first time and are intimidated by the options, this post is for you.
Each of these tools offers the core features of task management – creating/assigning tasks, task comments, simple reports, and email notifications.
Here is a list of the top 11 free project management tools:
While free software can be a great start for any project, as you scale and get involved in more projects, finding a dedicated tool that can fit your needs is well worth the investment.
Taskworld has a 14-day PRO Free Trial which gives our users the perfect amount of time to see if it’s a good fit for them. After that, your account turns into a non-stop Free plan! You’ll still have access to your most important stuff, just with a couple of limits.
Task management by itself isn’t enough for modern teams to collaborate. Relying on integrations to solve other problems isn’t very efficient as most integrations are half cooked. For example, a Trello/Slack integration doesn’t let you seamlessly chat and move Kanban boards from the same tab.
That’s why it’s important to include core aspects of collaboration in one tool – task/project management, team messaging, performance evaluation, file management, and advanced reports. And that’s what Taskworld does. It has those features built-in.
One of the first kanban-based task management tools, Trello was originally developed by Fog Creek Software and is now owned by Atlassian.
For many users, Trello has been their first foray into visual task management. It provides a good clean Kanban experience. It’s one of the few tools that provide a free version to an unlimited number of users.
Trello has minimal onboarding and immediately draws you inside their app. It doesn’t require a verified email to use it. Trello has 200+ integrations, although the free version restricts only one per board. Trello also recently added a new integration called Butler, which helps automate workflow based on custom commands. It has tons of automation options.
Trello is a good, simple, and free tool for small teams. It does lack some important task management features such as assigning checklist items, recurring tasks, and syncing tasks across multiple projects.
Launched in 2017, ClickUp is a relatively new entrant in the task management space. It’s a solid all-around task manager app. It offers some important features in its free versions such as Gantt charts, goals, and mind maps. This is especially useful for teams who want a more feature-rich free task manager than Trello.
However, it restricts their usage to 100 times. Its free version also offers 10 automations per month, time tracking, and 50+ native integrations.
One big limitation of Clickup’s free version is its file storage limit of 100MB. This shouldn’t be a problem if your team isn’t sharing heavy files on it. But this can be a dealbreaker for agencies and teams that share hi-res files frequently.
Some users find Clickup’s feature-rich interface a bit overwhelming. However, once you are past the learning curve, ClickUp is one of the strongest free task management tools.
Todoist initially started as an online to-do list, but in recent years has added more features to become a task manager. It might not offer advanced task management features or Kanban boards like Trello and ClickUp, but it’s still a helpful tool for solopreneurs, students, and small teams.
Todoist’s free plan offers popular task management features such as recurring tasks, prioritization, subtasks, and visual reports.
If you are looking for a mobile-first task manager experience, then Todoist is worth a try. It also integrates with multiple SaaS tools, including other task management solutions. Todoist also has an interesting feature called Todoist Karma that gamifies task management by awarding you points for completing tasks and maintaining your streaks.
Created by MeisterLabs, MeisterTask is a Kanban-based popular task manager. It’s not as feature-heavy as ClickUp but instead focuses on its minimal UI. This makes it popular among users who are new to task management tools.
MeisterTask’s free version gives you unlimited users and up to 3 projects. You also have some simple customization options and time tracking. However, you have to subscribe to its paid plans to use more advanced task management features such as timeline, checklist items, and permission settings, and attachment limits over 20MB.
Overall, MeisterTask is a clean and easy task manager.
Basecamp is one of the first task managers. It has been in the market since 2004. Although most of its good stuff is part of Basecamp Business (paid version), its free version still offers great value. That’s why Basecamp is very popular among small teams, freelancers and students.
Basecamp’s free version gives you 1GB of storage space, 20 users, and up to 3 projects to collaborate. You have basic task management features and also real-time team chat. It has an interesting approach to notification settings where you can specify what times during the week you don’t want to be disturbed.
Timecamp is an automatic time tracker that also allows its users to monitor tasks done for free. This application was launched by the programmer Kamil Rudnicki in 2009, who is also the founder of Time Solutions. Freelancers and teams within a company widely use it because of its graphical timesheets that show activities that are best for professional B2B companies.
With Timecamp, you can track a team’s performance, a project’s profitability, and the productivity of each individual. It has a simple user interface that most users will utilize in a short period of time. With these features, this web-based application can speed up tracking billables, attendance reporting, and invoicing but can mostly be used with the paid version. The free version offers great features such as unlimited users and tasks, availability of project templates, and one integration.
Airtable is a project management tool that helps tasks be organized and filtered and for the team members to collaborate and unify their works aiming to attain a goal. This collaborative software was founded in 2013 by Howie Liu, AndrewOfstad, and Emmett Nicholas. Its free version is fit for small teams and individuals.
One of its most important advantages is the ability to create custom dashboards to present the facts you care about the most. External programs such as Dropbox, Google Drive, MailChimp, Slack, and several social media platforms are also supported.
Paymo is an online management platform that assures businesses in helping with their projects; however, its free plan is only limited to one user, making it ideal for freelancers.
To assure the success of a project, Paymo is confident in helping in the provision of accurate project estimates, improved planning processes, constant tracking of the team’s activities, easier collaboration, staying on schedule and within the budget, informing stakeholders, and hassle-free invoicing.
Infolio is a task management application that makes collaboration easy by mainly using the Kanban view boards that each user can customize a project’s list and status. It also showcases customizable fields in a posted project or task, chat spaces, team view, and smart filters.
Infolio’s free plan contains all of the usual capabilities, with the exception of storage as it has space having 1GB. The premium plan for a space upgrade is $4.99 per user per month.
nTask is another web-based software that is easy to learn, making it manageable even to users uninclined to technology. It is suitable for an individual or any team size that handles complex projects to help managers plan, schedule, execute, manage resources, and report about the projects within the platform.
The free version offers usage for up to 5 members that provide checklists, receive notifications on task assignments, track working time and set due dates, and manage priorities.
Whether you’re in sales, marketing, HR, engineering, construction, or design, there are a ton of ways you can use task management. It’s important to evaluate what you’ll really end up needing it for, but you’ll be thrilled when you start seeing the benefits!
If you’re ready to take that step, just sign up right here and get started for free!