In 2011, Google hired a team of researchers to analyze their teams and find out what the key differences were between the highly effective ones and the ones that struggled. The researchers spent months analyzing data, and couldn’t figure out the key to a “good” team dynamic.
Some of the high-performing teams were friends outside of work, while others weren’t. Some had built a team culture of interrupting while others let people finish their ideas. Some had shared hobbies while others didn’t. The researchers couldn’t find a pattern, but they knew there had to be one.
That’s when they looked at the “group norms” or “team culture.” They found that teams where everyone spent roughly the same amount of time speaking in the meetings performed the best. It didn’t matter if team members interrupted one another regularly versus if everyone finished their sentences. The teams that excelled were the ones where everyone made roughly the same amount of meaningful contributions to the discussions.
Fast forward to 2022 — we’re living in a world where a global pandemic has fast-tracked hybrid and remote work. It’s more important than ever to consider how you can help your team collaborate effectively and make sure every team member is given the chance to make meaningful contributions. Team management and productivity apps are a great way to help accomplish that.
Below is a list of 12 of the best team task management apps, listed alphabetically. They make up some of the most popular options for team management software currently on the market. We’ve included a range of options that cater to different needs and industries.
Read through to find the one that fits your team needs the best! Towards the end of the article, you’ll also find some FAQs about what team management is and what to look for in determining which software will best fit your team’s needs.
Asana is a team collaboration tool that’s highly customizable to your specific needs. You can use it in a Kanban-board style or view projects as task lists. With either option, you can add attachments, labels, sub-tasks, comments, and descriptions to the tasks.
With Asana, you can also set checklists, milestones, and due dates on projects to simplify teamwork. You can also utilize the in-app messaging option for communication on projects that won’t disrupt your workflow.
As far as team management apps go, Asana is a great option for those who want an easy, user-friendly tool for communicating with remote teams. Asana is available as a mobile app, making it easy for teams to communicate with one another at all times.
Asana is free for up to 15 team members. From there, the monthly pricing is either $10.99 per user or $24.99 per user depending on which plan you choose.
Clockify is a team time tracking app. It seamlessly integrates with 40+ platforms and allows team leaders to see how others are spending their time. Seeing timesheets of how your team allocates time, you can easily adjust deadlines on team projects or offer additional training on daily tasks that are eating up more time than they need to. The ability to track time facilitates accountability — especially valuable for remote teams.
With Clockify, you can track where team members are spending time and keep an eye on project progress. You can download the mobile app on either iOS or Android, making it easier than ever to stay in-the-loop at all times.
Clockify encourages team members to practice good time management. The Dashboard is Clockify’s standout feature. There, you can view a weekly breakdown of your team’s activities, including:
- What each team member worked on
- Who’s working on what in real-time
- Who’s most active throughout the week
Clockify allows users to opt for a free version, but it has limited features. From there, pricing ranges from $4.99 to $15.99 per user per month depending on the plan you choose.
Jira is a versatile project management tool ideal for business and software development teams. The highlight with Jira is really the versatility of the app. From being able to choose between templates (Kanban boards and Scrum are the most popular) to the option to customize your backlog of work to tracking daily tasks, Jira is an incredibly versatile software.
Within the app, you’ll be able to track progress (with labels such as “to-do,” “in-progress,” and “done”), fix issues, measure performance, and monitor project details. You can download the app to any device for simplified workflow.
You can assign team members to specific issues and plan and prioritize your work in a Roadview map.
For small teams with 10 or fewer members, using Jira is free. After that, pricing starts at $7 per user per month. Contact Jira to arrange a pricing plan for the top-tier features.
Microsoft Teams is ideal for team meetings and team communication. It allows you to have real-time conversations via chat or to quickly spin up video calls and utilize screen sharing. Teams allows users to record video calls so that team members unable to attend can stay in-the-loop on what is happening.
If your team already uses Microsoft 365, then Microsoft Teams might be a better candidate than the other apps on this list, being that Teams integrates seamlessly with other Microsoft tools such as PowerPoint or OneDrive.
It’s easy and straightforward to set up, simplifying the onboarding process. Especially with the growing need remote teams have for good collaboration, this software will simplify your team communication.
The pricing for Microsoft Teams is $5 per user per month.
Notion is one of the best team management tools on the market for large teams. The Notion workspace is incredibly customizable to your team's needs with different organizational options depending on the team projects. Notion’s organizational options range from Kanban boards to Gannt charts to to-do lists.
Many companies use Notion’s Wikis in their onboarding process as it’s easy to store company culture and rules within the app. The mobile app is well-designed and is available for both iOS and Android.
You can also take advantage of file sharing to streamline collaboration on team projects. Notion allows you to easily upload spreadsheets, create to-do lists, and track milestones. While this software is not geared toward in-app messaging, you can assign tasks and ensure your team members are notified of comments using the “@name” command.
When being utilized for personal use, Notion is free. However, for teams, the pricing is $8 per user per month.
OpenProject is an open-source team collaboration tool that is especially useful to software development teams. It incorporates efficient bug tracking and the Agile and Scrum project management approach.
Because of the open-source code, OpenProject is an incredibly versatile and customizable free team management app. Team projects can be organized in Kanban boards, Gannt charts, or a calendar overview that tracks project deadlines.
OpenProject allows team members to add comments, tables, and images for streamlined communication and collaboration on projects.
Open project pricing starts at $8.50 per user per month.
Podio will help your team cut down on long email threads by providing high-quality in-app chat options. You can easily communicate with your whole team in real-time via updates, feedback, comments, and project progress stats. Take advantage of in-app file sharing, implement automated workflow processes, and track deadlines in the calendar view.
Streamline your external collaboration by adding freelancers and clients to the app as needed. Podio allows you to give different types of access depending on the individual's roles and responsibilities within the team. You can give them “Workspace Admin,” “Regular Member,” or “Light Member” access.
Podio allows you to make audio or video calls within the app. Podio’s greatest strength is the visual report feature.The visual reports allow your team to get a clean overview of daily activity and project deadlines.
For small teams up to five members, Podio offers a free version. After that, pricing ranges from $9-$24 per user per month.
More than 85,000 teams worldwide use Proofhub as their business management tool of choice. It is compatible with iOS, Android, or desktop apps — which makes it great for managing remote teams and in-house teams from the same app.
Project managers can set due dates, assign tasks to individual team members, and set time estimates for various projects. Project managers can also utilize in-app Gantt charts to visually estimate project timeline and adjust tasks to accommodate team needs.
Proofhub is one of the few team management apps on this list that does not have a free version. However, fixed pricing (at $89/month) billed annually means you only pay once for this powerful team management software.
Slack is a messaging tool for teams designed to be used on iOS, Android, or desktop app. Communication happens in real-time, making it a great communication tool for remote teams.
Within Slack, you can create various channels. Add the needed team members to these channels and those channels to communicate and collaborate on projects. Slack allows you to integrate other apps your team needs, such as Google Docs (for file sharing), Zoom (video calls), and other forms of team communication. Just add “@channel” to a message you send, and everyone will receive a notification that will remind them to check the team channel.
A great resource, Slack offers is the ability to set reminders. Type “/reminder” and then set the details. You can use this to send a reminder 15 minutes before a team meeting or to remind everyone in the channel of an upcoming project deadline.
Slack allows you to integrate with Clockwise, which syncs your calendar with your Slack status. This way, you won’t receive Slack notification while in meetings or during scheduled focus time.
Slack is a free team management tool for the first 10,000 messages. Once you reach the limit, it will start deleting old messages to make room for the newer ones. If you want to keep all of the team communication in the Slack database, the pricing for the pro version is $8 per user per month.
10. Teamwork Chat
As the name implies, Teamwork Chat is a chat-based collaboration tool. It’s similar to Slack in that it also allows you to create group messaging, send direct messages, and add emoji reactions to messages. You can get the Teamwork Chat app for iOS or Android as well as the desktop app, helping you communicate seamlessly with your team.
What we love about Teamwork Chat is you can create tasks directly from your conversations. So, as you’re chatting with your colleagues, you can easily capture tasks that come up in the conversation — while they’re fresh in your mind.
Teamwork Chat is $4 per user per month.
Trello is a project management tool modeled after the Kanban board. It’s especially good for small teams. Trello boards can start to feel a little crowded with too many people using the same one, and the pricing for large teams can start to add up.
With Trello, start by creating a board, which acts as a hub for all of your work. Then, add cards (organized into columns) to add hierarchy and instantly bring organization to your various work items. These columns are fully customizable, so use whatever organizational system works for your team.
A popular way to organize Trello boards is to place cards into the following columns: backlog, to-do, in process, and completed. Then, when the “status” on a project changes, you simply move the card from one column to the next.
You can add additional information to the cards listed in each column. For example:
- Due dates
This boosts team communication, as everyone stays in the loop on what the “next steps” are on all the team projects.
Trello helps streamline task lists, keep clear due dates for projects, and share milestones via the checklist feature.
One downside to it is that it can get a little confusing if people don’t understand the categorization you’re using for the columns. When onboarding a new team member, make sure to familiarize them with the platform.
With the free plan, you can have up to 10 separate boards. For unlimited boards, the pricing is $9.99 per user per month.
At its core, Wrike is a communication platform aiming to help teams strengthen their team collaboration.
The platform allows for file sharing. You can share images, videos, and files. Others can add comments to these shared files. Simplify workflow with integrations to Google Drive, GitHub, Salesforce, and other platforms.
Furthermore, within the app’s workspace you can schedule tasks in calendar view, plan team projects, and track progress.
For small teams of fewer than 5 members, you can use Wrike for free. With over 5 users, Wrike pricing is $9.80 per user per month.
Team management FAQs
What does team management mean?
Team management is the ability to coordinate a group of people (aka a team) to work together to complete a task or project. The best team managers are able to lead their team to accomplish the needed tasks within the allotted time frame, while communicating well with their team and developing their team members.
What is team management software?
For those who are tasked with business management, finding the best team task management app is a game changer. Choose the one that fits your leadership style, team needs, and budget.
Team management software generally offers the following functionality:
This includes the ability to assign tasks and keep your whole team informed on due dates and project timelines.
2. Progress tracking
Some software allows business managers to see the real-time progress of their team members. This can be incredibly valuable as a way to manage resources and streamline workflow.
Generate team reports and then track and analyze the progress that you are making over a period of time. Reporting is also essential when stakeholders are involved.
4. File storage
Some team management software is designed so you can upload images, spreadsheets, docs, and other files to the app to be accessed by everyone. It also allows you to create a data backlog for future teammates to access the information.
The ability to communicate easily and quickly is crucial to good collaboration.
What is the best team management tool?
The best team management tool depends on your team’s needs and size. First, determine your needs and then find the team management app that solves those problems.
How do you track what your team is working on?
Clockwise allows team managers to sync and view their teams schedules. This gives you an overview of what your team members are working on and how much uninterrupted deep Focus Time they have in their week. You can also seamlessly schedule team meetings that work for everyone.
As 12 of the top team management apps, they each offer their own unique strengths and are sure to help your team keep track of projects and communicate effectively with one another.
- For teams that want to hit the ground running with an easy-to-use platform — Asana, Proofhub, and Trello are great choices.
- For teams looking to uplevel their time management with a time-tracking solution, we recommend looking into Clockify.
- For software teams that need customizable workflows and Agile-friendly features — Jira, Wrike, and OpenProject are the standouts on this list.
- For teams that already use Microsoft 365, Microsoft Teams may be the easiest to incorporate into their workflow.
- For teams looking to increase transparency and banish data silos, we highly recommend Notion.
- For more efficient communication — Slack, Podio, and Teamwork Chat are all great options.
If you need to simplify the onboarding process, Notion is a great tool. Create and store training materials for new team members in the Notion database that they can read through on their own.
Trello is an awesome team management app to keep an eye on progress with specific projects. The Kanban board style is simple to use and the ability to add comments, to-do lists, and deadlines to the cards helps you stay on top of deadlines and communicate with teammates.