9 best collaboration software and project management tools to use
Teamwork wins the game. That’s what all reasonable coaches teach their players, but this phrase can be used far beyond the court. With today’s technology, it has never been easier to work in a group than it is now, thanks to the internet.
Companies and businesses can function flawlessly, without employees being in the same room, or the same continent. There are numerous tools that allow people to work remotely, while keeping the communication and productivity on the maximum level.
But because our professional needs are different, it’s sometimes hard to choose the best, most effective software for remote collaboration. In that manner, we did some research, and created a list of the best software for collaboration compatible with Windows 10.
So, read our article, pick the best software for you, gather your team, and start getting the job done.
The best collaboration software for Windows
Slack is one of the most popular collaboration software in the world, and definitely is among the most effective ones. This program offers so many options, that will allow you to organize the communication of the whole team, or organization.
At first look, Slack is just another messaging service, but it’s actually much more than that. You can create group chats, so-called “Channels”, to communicate with different people from your organization. Channels are public, so everyone can see what’s going on. Additionally, you can create private channels, where only people within that channel will have the access.
Slack is also integrated with many services, like Google Drive, Dropbox, Twitter, and more. Sharing external files with channels is also easy, because it works on a simple drag and drop principle.
There are free (Lite), Standard, and Plus versions of Slack. Each version offers it a set of features according to the price. The Lite version supports the unlimited number of people, but there are some storage limitations. Also, group chats are not possible, and users can integrate Slack with only one service. The Standard version costs $8 per user per month provides 10GB of storage per user, and allows group chats. And the Plus version guarantees 20GB of storage per user, for $15.
If you want to download Slack, you can grab it from this link.
Wrike is a cloud-based project management tool, suitable for any team or organization. This software has all features required from a serious project management service.
Wrike allows you to create a project, and add various assignments to it. Assignments can be further assigned to team members. There are also some additional options, like the ability to set deadlines, write comments, manage tasks, and more. Integration with other services works great, so users can add various attachments.
Privacy in Wrike is highly valued, unlike in some other project management tools. You’ll have to invite people to join the project, even if they’re part of the team. If you’re not working on a project, you can create folders, where other types of files are put. Folders even allow you to sort projects, for better management.
Communication in Wrike is not on the highest level, because there’s no built-in chat app.
When it comes to pricing, Wrike does offer a free version, but, of course, with limitations. There are also Pro ($9.80 per user per month), Business ($24.80 per user per month), and Enterprise versions.
For more info about Wrike, visit its official website.
InVision is a powerful tool aimed at designers and artists. Its main purpose is creating prototypes of your design, but you can also use it as an effective project management tool. If you’re working on an app design, for example, you can bring your ideas to life with Invision. And get useful feedback from your colleagues.
You can use designs from any program, like Photoshop, or Illustrator, and turn them into interactive prototypes. Everything works smoothly, and it will give you a clear idea of how your project will look like. Anyone from your team can jump in, and leave comments, for even better understanding.
InVision also allows you to start interactive design meetings. Here you can discuss with colleagues about the project, and easily share ideas. This web-based service is not a classical project management tool, but it surely provides great collaboration options.
InVision is available for free. However, the free version allows you only one project at the time. For more plans and pricing, visit InVision’s official website.
Asana is different than other project management tools. It serves as some kind of an advanced to-do list, with lots of additional options. With Asana, you can set goals for your team, in form of list items. But these items are interactive, as team members can collaborate with each other through them.
This service is extremely flexible. When you create a ‘to-do’ list with Asana, you can assign it to a team member, set a due date, upload or link to associated documents, add tags, and more. You can even subscribe to the project, and receive notification about any change.
In terms of communication, there are definitely better options than Asana. However, you can combine Asana with Slack, and other popular tools. Additionally, there’s a general discussion board where team members can discuss the project.
Asana is generally available for free. The free version offers you all basic options, that are enough for smaller teams. You can set up a team of up to 15 people, create unlimited projects and tasks, but with limited Dashboards. The paid version of Asana costs $99.96 per person per year, and offers the unlimited number of team members, unlimited guests, support, and more.
You can find more details about Asana on its official website.
Podio is a web-based service that serves like a micro social network , only for the members of your team (but it doesn’t advertise itself as a social network, though). Everyone from the team creates their own personal account on Podio. These accounts allow team members to communicate with each other, and participate in the working process.
Podio is organized into workspaces, where different people from your team can be ‘placed.’ Just like real social-media sites, Podio also supports apps. Some of the apps are the group chat app, Project Management app, Meetings app, and more.
All these apps are available to users in Podio’s own web store. The ability to add various features and options through apps makes Podio extremely flexible and customizable. Each workspace can have its different set of apps, and different people from the team.
When it comes to pricing, Podio charges $9, $14, and $24 per month for its Basic, Plus, and Premium plans respectively. Each plan offers a number of features according to its price. Podio also offers a free account, but it’s quite limited, because it doesn’t support project management.
You can find more info about Podio on its official website.
Trello is another tool that many people consider a ‘to-do list’ tool, but is actually more. This project management tool is for visual persons, because it’s a nice mix of good looks and functionality. Trello is organized into boards and cards. Boards can be characterized as a workspace, while cards can represent a certain part of the project.
Cards are highly customizable, so you can design each one by your needs. Cards can be a combination of text, images, or other documents. You can combine different media, to get the most accurate picture of the current milestone. There’s a good integration with other services and file formats, so you can easily make a card out of PDF document.
Every team member on board can have a card assigned to himself/herself. Tracking is enabled, so you can always see what’s going on at any card. There are some missing features, like the ability to mark a milestone as done. However, Trello has the ability to set a due date to cards, and archive them.
Trello is available for free, but with some limitations. Users of the free version can attach cards up to 10MB in size, but the number of cards is unlimited. There are also Gold, Business Class, and Enterprise versions, which, of course, remove some limitations.
To find out more about the versions of Trello, visit its official website.
Appear.in is a slick, simple video conferencing tool. Its pure purpose is the communication between the team members, as it doesn’t offer project management features. But that’s not a problem, because this web-based tool is not a project management app.
Appear.in makes it extremely simple for team members to communicate with each other. No registration is required, and it’s completely free. All you have to do is go to the site, create a room, get a shareable link, and invite others via that link. You can have up to 8 people in the conversation at the same time.
The service works in HTML5 only, which means no flash, or additional plugins are required. When it comes to sound quality, it even beats some competitors. So, if you need a fast, reliable option for communicating with your team members, you can’t go wrong with Appear.in.
However, if you’re working on some more complicated projects, that require more than just talking with your colleagues, you’ll probably have to look for another solution. But for simple communication, you can hardly find a better tool.
You can try Appear.in here. It’s completely free.
Yes, you’ve read it right, we consider Skype a good collaboration tool. You probably won’t find Skype on any other ‘top collaboration tools’ list, but the fact is Skype is used by millions of professionals. Some smaller companies simply don’t have resources for premium tools, so they choose to stick with Skype.
If we ignore occasional bugs, Skype is still a decent choice. Microsoft’s service has everything a smaller team needs to get the job done. As you probably know, you can call multiple people, chat, make group chats, share files and links, and more.
There’s also Skype for Business, for bigger organizations. Microsoft made Skype integrated with basically any platform, so you can even use the browser version.
So, if you don’t want to experiment with ‘less-known’ tools, and don’t need any advanced project management tool, Skype is just fine.
You can download the free version of Skype for Windows from its official website.
Clarizen is a project management tool for large organizations. Upfront costs of using Clarizen are huge, so smaller companies cannot even think about it. However, despite its peppery price, Clarizen is still fairly easy and straightforward to use.
Setting up Clarizen account is easy. Once you have your account set up, you’ll have access to numerous features of this software. Clarizen offers everything you’d expect from a professional project management tool.
When creating a project, you can choose a template, or start entirely from scratch. The most important features are the ability to add milestones, detailed info about tasks, easy task management, and more. There are also some more advanced tools, like Gantt chart view of the project’s tasks, or an approvals system for timesheets and expenses.
When it comes to design, Clarizen is not the number one tool on the market. There are project management services that outshine Clarizen in aesthetics. But if functionality and the number of features are explicitly what you’re looking for, Clarizen is aiming for the highest position on your list.
Wrike comes in three variants: Enterprise ($45 user/month), Unlimited ($60 user/month), and Clarizen Salesforce Edition ($79 user/month). All payments are made 36 months upfront. This means a larger company would have to pay more than $50,000 for its employees to use Clarizen.
For more info about the software and pricing plans, visit Clarizen’s official website.
There you go, these are our top picks for collaboration software for Windows 10. Most of these services are suitable for any level of organization and teams of any size. So, you can take a deeper analysis, and see what program is worth paying for (or not). To make you, and your team even more productive, make sure to check out our picks for the best mind mapping tools, and timer apps for Windows.
Tell us what do you think about our choices in the comments, and let us know if you know about some other great project management tool we didn’t mention here.
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