Project Management

Top 9 Free Project Planning Software

By | 11 min read | Published

Project planning software helps you plan and successfully execute your projects.

No matter the size of the project, planning it right will ensure that it’s on the road to success. As a project manager, it’s your role to create a comprehensive project plan that will help you avoid any roadblocks. Otherwise, how will you know your team’s workload? How will you know the required budget? How will you decide the timeline?

However, we understand that even creating a plan can be a daunting task. Luckily, we have project planning software that will make your job of planning and your team’s job of executing easier. It will help you clearly communicate your project’s approach and the process your team will follow to complete it.

If you’re just beginning to use project planning software at your small business or looking for an affordable option, we suggest you start with a free tool. An added benefit here would be that you’ll get a chance to evaluate the tool’s usability before you decide to go for its premium version.

To help you make the right choice, we’ve compiled a list of nine free project planning software solutions (listed alphabetically) based on user ratings and reviews. (Read how we selected the products.)

Check out the complete list of the best project planning software in Capterra’s software directory.
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1

Asana: Comes with customizable project templates

Asana is a project planning software that helps you plan, manage, track, and communicate about your projects. It lets you outline key tasks and due dates and define goals, milestones, and objectives.

It offers project views in multiple formats, including list, calendar, Kanban, and timeline. The dashboard offers the real-time status of the projects. These dashboards are fully customizable and don’t require manual updating.

This project planning tool comes with a wide range of project templates that you can choose for your own projects. You can also create your own set of templates for common processes. This tool can be integrated with over 100 applications, including Microsoft Teams, Adobe Creative Cloud, Clockwise, and Google Calendar.

Asana has applications for Android, iOS, and Windows. It offers support via guides, forums, and articles. Their team is reachable by filling out a web form.

*Analysis accurate as of April 2022
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Key Features:

  • Action item tracking
  • Agenda management
  • Agile methodologies
  • Alerts/notifications
  • Approval workflow
  • Audit trail
Trial/Free Version:
Free Trial
Free Version
Cost to upgrade:

$10.99 per user, per month

Device Compatibility:

Screenshot:

<p><i><span style="font-weight: 400;">Task list in </span></i><a href="https://www.capterra.com/p/120550/Asana/"><i><span style="font-weight: 400;">Asana</span></i></a><i><span style="font-weight: 400;"> (</span></i><a href="https://www.capterra.com/p/120550/Asana/"><i><span style="font-weight: 400;">Source</span></i></a><i><span style="font-weight: 400;">)</span></i></p>
2

ClickUp: Allows software customization with ClickApps

ClickUp is project management software that comes with project planning features. It lets you plan, track, and collaborate on projects with your team members. You can leave comments on tasks and documents, chat in real time, or share attachments for easy communication.

This tool lets you simplify your complex tasks and projects by breaking them down into subtasks. It offers 15+ types of views for projects, including list, board, calendar, Gantt, mind map, and whiteboard.

You can customize ClickUp without optimizing its code. It comes with 35+ ClickApps, all with different functionalities, which you can use to tailor your tasks.

ClickUp has applications for Android, iOS, Mac, Windows, and Linux. It offers support via help docs, on-demand demos, video tutorials, webinars, and FAQs. Their team is reachable on call and chat.

*Analysis accurate as of April 2022
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Key Features:

  • Activity dashboard
  • Budgeting/forecasting
  • Calendar management
  • Collaboration tools
  • Customizable templates
  • Dashboard
Trial/Free Version:
Free Trial
Free Version
Cost to upgrade:

$5 per user, per month

Device Compatibility:

Screenshot:

<p><i><span style="font-weight: 400;">Board view in </span></i><a href="https://www.capterra.com/p/222938/ClickUp/"><i><span style="font-weight: 400;">ClickUp</span></i></a><i><span style="font-weight: 400;"> (</span></i><a href="https://www.capterra.com/p/222938/ClickUp/"><i><span style="font-weight: 400;">Source</span></i></a><i><span style="font-weight: 400;">)</span></i></p>
3

GoodDay: Helps improve productivity with Productivity Suite apps

GoodDay is a work management platform that lets you plan, manage, visualize, and track your project by managing your team’s workload, goals, and schedules. It comes with 20+ types of views, such as Kanban board, task list, and Gantt chart, among others, for you to select from for project planning.

This tool comes with three types of resources and workload management that let you plan resources based on the level of project, tasks, and priority. It also allows your team members to create custom work schedules based on events such as vacation and travel.

GoodDay comes with specialized Productivity Suite apps that help you improve your productivity. These apps allow you to plan and run meetings, create reminders, organize events, create and share documents, store files, track time, and have one-to-one or group discussions.

GoodDay has applications for Android, iOS, Windows, Mac, and Linux. It offers support via articles. Their team is reachable by email or by opening a support ticket.

*Analysis accurate as of April 2022
best functionality
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Key Features:

  • Agile methodologies
  • Audit trail
  • Backlog management
  • Budget management
  • Calendar management
  • Capacity management
Trial/Free Version:
Free Trial
Free Version
Cost to upgrade:

$4 per user, per month

Device Compatibility:

Screenshot:

<p><i><span style="font-weight: 400;">Work schedule in </span></i><a href="https://www.capterra.com/p/169009/GoodDay/"><i><span style="font-weight: 400;">GoodDay</span></i></a><i><span style="font-weight: 400;"> (</span></i><a href="https://www.capterra.com/p/169009/GoodDay/"><i><span style="font-weight: 400;">Source</span></i></a><i><span style="font-weight: 400;">)</span></i></p>
4

Hive: Supports integration with 1000+ applications

Hive is a project management platform with functionalities that let you plan multiple projects with Gantt charts, Kanban board, calendars, and tables. You can also invite people outside your team to view your project plans.

With its resource management features, you can monitor your team’s utilization across various projects. You can also streamline processes and communication by designing custom workflows. Besides, you can access a fully customizable analytics portfolio that provides insights about all your work across all projects.

Hive can be integrated with 1000+ applications to bring data into one centralized dashboard. Some of the applications you can integrate Hive with are Google Drive, Jira, GitHub, Zendesk, and QuickBooks.

Hive has applications for Android, iOS, Windows, and Mac. It offers support via on-demand demos, FAQs, support articles, and video tutorials.

*Analysis accurate as of April 2022
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Key Features:

  • Activity dashboard
  • Agile methodologies
  • Backlog management
  • Calendar management
  • Collaboration tools
  • Customizable templates
Trial/Free Version:
Free Trial
Free Version
Cost to upgrade:

$12 per user, per month

Device Compatibility:

Screenshot:

<p><i><span style="font-weight: 400;">Gantt view in </span></i><a href="https://www.capterra.com/p/223599/Hive/"><i><span style="font-weight: 400;">Hive</span></i></a><i><span style="font-weight: 400;"> (</span></i><a href="https://www.capterra.com/p/223599/Hive/"><i><span style="font-weight: 400;">Source</span></i></a><i><span style="font-weight: 400;">)</span></i></p>
5

Jira: Helps improve performance with agile reports

Jira is a project management software built especially for software teams to plan, track, and release their software. You can create tasks and distribute them across the team. You can also keep track of the performance by analyzing real-time visual data.

With Jira, you can create Scrum boards and Kanban boards to manage complex projects. You can also create roadmaps to plan your releases and keep track of work across multiple teams. It also helps you understand the bandwidth of your team members so that you assign tasks accordingly.

This project manager comes with a dashboard and agile reports to help you make data-driven decisions. Using these reports, you can keep track of your goals, predict future performance, spot bottlenecks, and identify trends.

Jira has applications for Android, iOS, Windows, and Mac. It offers support via documentation, knowledge base, training, and support community. Their team is reachable by opening a support ticket.

*Analysis accurate as of April 2022
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Key Features:

  • Agile methodologies
  • Assignment management
  • Audit trail
  • Backlog management
  • Build log
  • Business process automation
Trial/Free Version:
Free Trial
Free Version
Cost to upgrade:

$7.50 per user, per month

Device Compatibility:

Screenshot:

<p><i><span style="font-weight: 400;">Features in </span></i><a href="https://www.capterra.com/p/19319/JIRA/"><i><span style="font-weight: 400;">Jira</span></i></a><i><span style="font-weight: 400;"> (</span></i><a href="https://www.capterra.com/p/19319/JIRA/"><i><span style="font-weight: 400;">Source</span></i></a><i><span style="font-weight: 400;">)</span></i></p>
6

monday.com: Allows custom automation for real-time updates

monday.com is a project management software solution with project planning features. It lets you plan, manage, and collaborate on projects and portfolios. With this PM tool, you can centralize all your projects and manage them through custom dashboards.

You can streamline projects by automating project approvals and tasks. You can also use customizable forms to create items on boards. Besides, you can enable team collaboration, allocate resources, and share real-time project updates.

This tool allows you to set up custom automation to get real-time updates on your projects. You can send emails when due dates are near or updated as the tasks are completed. Additionally, you can integrate the tool with applications such as Gmail and Dropbox.

monday.com has applications for Android, iOS, Windows, and Mac. It offers support via guides, webinars, community forums, video tutorials, blogs, and podcasts. Their team is reachable by filling out a web form.

*Analysis accurate as of April 2022
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Key Features:

  • Activity tracking
  • Advertising management
  • Approval process control
  • Calendar management
  • Campaign management
  • CRM
Trial/Free Version:
Free Trial
Free Version
Cost to upgrade:

$8 per user, per month

Device Compatibility:

Screenshot:

<p><i><span style="font-weight: 400;">Workload management in </span></i><a href="https://www.capterra.com/p/220947/mondaycom/"><i><span style="font-weight: 400;">monday.com</span></i></a><i><span style="font-weight: 400;"> (</span></i><a href="https://www.capterra.com/p/220947/mondaycom/"><i><span style="font-weight: 400;">Source</span></i></a><i><span style="font-weight: 400;">)</span></i></p>
7

Paymo: Helps create and manage invoices and payments

Paymo is a work and project management solution that helps you plan and manage your projects and track work time. It comes with team collaboration tools that can help you keep your team members in sync.

For task management and task tracking, this tool offers different kinds of views such as Kanban board, task list, spreadsheet, and task calendar view. You can break your bigger tasks into smaller sub-tasks, set priorities, and set email alerts to get notified about upcoming due dates.

With Paymo, you can turn timesheet data into customizable invoices and make necessary adjustments manually. You can also export these invoices as PDF or CSV files or sync them with your accounting tools such as QuickBooks and Xero. Additionally, you can set up payment gateways to receive payments securely.

Paymo has applications for Android, iOS, Windows, Mac, and Linux. It offers support via user guides and demos.

*Analysis accurate as of April 2022
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Key Features:

  • Activity dashboard
  • Billing and invoicing
  • Client portal
  • Collaboration tools
  • File sharing
  • Invoice creation
Trial/Free Version:
Free Trial
Free Version
Cost to upgrade:

$4.95 per user, per month

Device Compatibility:

Screenshot:

<p><i><span style="font-weight: 400;">Team scheduling in </span></i><a href="https://www.capterra.com/p/222132/Paymo/"><i><span style="font-weight: 400;">Paymo</span></i></a><i><span style="font-weight: 400;"> (</span></i><a href="https://www.capterra.com/p/222132/Paymo/"><i><span style="font-weight: 400;">Source</span></i></a><i><span style="font-weight: 400;">)</span></i></p>
8

Quire: Allows outsourcing of projects

Quire is a project management tool with features such as a Kanban board, sub-lists, and a dynamic timeline that lets you plan, arrange, and prioritize your tasks and projects. It also gives you an overview of how well each of your projects is performing.

This tool allows you to outsource tasks to third parties. You can share an invitation link with those who want to access the project. You can also make your project public and let those with the project’s URL access it.

You can temporarily hide your currently non-actionable tasks to keep your task list organized. You can highlight your tasks and projects by adding color. You can also personalize your Quire workspace by changing its theme, color, and font sizes as per your liking.

Quire has applications for Android, iOS, and web. It offers support via tutorials, guides, and FAQs. Their team is reachable through email.

*Analysis accurate as of April 2022
View Profile

Key Features:

  • Activity dashboard
  • Agile methodologies
  • Calendar management
  • Collaboration tools
  • Customizable templates
  • File sharing
Trial/Free Version:
Free Trial
Free Version
Cost to upgrade:

$8.50 per user, per month

Device Compatibility:

Screenshot:

<p><i><span style="font-weight: 400;">A nested task in </span></i><a href="https://www.capterra.com/p/222556/Quire/"><i><span style="font-weight: 400;">Quire</span></i></a><i><span style="font-weight: 400;"> (</span></i><a href="https://www.capterra.com/p/222556/Quire/"><i><span style="font-weight: 400;">Source</span></i></a><i><span style="font-weight: 400;">)</span></i></p>
9

Teamwork: Helps manage time with time tracking features

Teamwork is a project management tool that comes with project planning as well as resource management features. It gives you real-time data on your team members’ capacity and allows you to easily add, edit, reassign work, and shift priorities.

This PM tool uses Gantt charts to visualize your project’s timeline and lets you break your tasks into smaller ones. It also helps you identify any risks associated with your project and manage them with resource management features.

Teamwork comes with time tracking features with which you can keep track of billable hours. It has a built-in online time tracker that measures team members’ time spent on projects. Based on the data, this tool can also generate invoices.

Teamwork has applications for Android, iOS, and web. It offers support via blogs, video tutorials, guides, and webinars. Their team is reachable through call and email.

*Analysis accurate as of April 2022
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Key Features:

  • Activity dashboard
  • Calendar management
  • Capacity management
  • Customizable templates
  • Drag and drop
  • Idea management
Trial/Free Version:
Free Trial
Free Version
Cost to upgrade:

$10 per user, per month

Device Compatibility:

Screenshot:

<p><i><span style="font-weight: 400;">Project view in </span></i><a href="https://www.capterra.com/p/220945/Teamwork/"><i><span style="font-weight: 400;">Teamwork</span></i></a><i><span style="font-weight: 400;"> (</span></i><a href="https://www.capterra.com/p/220945/Teamwork/"><i><span style="font-weight: 400;">Source</span></i></a><i><span style="font-weight: 400;">)</span></i></p>

How to choose the right free project planning software

  • Project views: Project planners offers various types of views for the projects, including a list, spreadsheet, Gantt chart, or a timeline view. Although you may not need all of them, some project planning tools may not also have the view that you are most comfortable working with. Therefore, thoroughly check for the type of views that you want.
  • Invoicing and billing: Creating invoices and bills for clients can be a time-consuming process. However, project planning tools can do this job for you. They track members’ time spent on tasks and projects and automatically create invoices. Therefore, when looking for a project planning tool, go for the one with invoicing and billing features.
  • Automated project alerts and updates: To ensure that you complete your project on time, you need to ensure that you don’t miss any deadlines or important project updates. Therefore, look for a tool that can send out automated emails reminding you about the approaching deadlines and informing you if there’s been any change in the timeline.

Common questions to ask while selecting free project planning software

Is there any learning curve involved?

Not all project planning software solutions are intuitive and easy to navigate. Even if you go for one which claims to be user-friendly, your teammates may have difficulty understanding the whole system. Therefore, ask your vendor about the learning curve and enquire if they provide training.

What type of integrations does the tool support?

You must be using different applications for team conferences, emails, data storage, or payments. A good project planning tool will integrate with them so that you don’t have to toggle between tabs. Therefore, ask the vendor about the types of integrations their solution supports and see if they match with the applications that you currently use.

What security features does your software have?

If your projects often contain confidential information, you cannot overlook the security aspect. You will need password protection or the ability to change or completely revoke user access permissions. So, ask your vendors if these security options are available in their free project planning software.

How did we choose these products? We didn’t—you did

To find your ideal software match, you need information you can trust—so you can save time, stay on budget, and focus more energy on growing your business. It’s why we vet and verify all our user reviews and recommend only the tools endorsed by people like you.

In other words, our product recommendations are never bought or sold, or based on the opinion of a single individual—they’re chosen by your peers, reflecting the views and experiences of our independent base of software reviewers.

At Capterra, we objectively select and rank products based on a methodology developed by our research team. Some vendors pay us when they receive web traffic, but this has no influence on our methodology.

To be considered for this list, products had to:

  1. Have at least 20 unique product reviews published on Capterra within the past two years, with an average rating of 3.0 or higher (as of April 25, 2022). We selected the nine products with the highest ratings to feature in this article.
  2. Offer a free, stand-alone version of the software (not a trial version of the software where you must purchase a product after a limited amount of time).
  3. Meet our project planning software market definition: “Project planning software enables project stakeholders to define and execute tasks required to successfully complete a project, and plan and visualize project execution strategies on connected timelines.”

The “best functionality” tool is identified based on the highest user ratings for functionality that a vendor received based on publicly available reviews (as of April 25, 2022).

The “most affordable” tool is identified based on the lowest pricing a vendor offered on their website in terms of cost to upgrade (as of April 25, 2022).

Disclaimer: We conducted this analysis based on reviews and ratings data as of April 25, 2022. In order to present the most up-to-date information, the product cards show real-time ratings. Please note that this means the ratings value in the product card may not reflect the ratings value at the time of analysis.

Product research for this article was conducted by Himanshi Arora.


Looking for Project Management software? Check out Capterra's list of the best Project Management software solutions.
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About the Author

Preksha Buttan

Preksha Buttan

Preksha Buttan is a Writer at Capterra. She provides expert insights and helps small businesses identify the right software for their needs by analyzing user reviews for the highest rated products in relevant software categories. She has previously written and published content for the medical and automotive industries. Her interest lies in marketing and branding. When she’s not working, she can be found watching a thriller.

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