15 Best project collaboration tools in 2023

Say you’ve started an organization, and you need to work remotely with your team. You set up your tasks, deadlines, and objectives. So far so good.

But then, bottlenecks appear. Team members don’t communicate well, and it gets impossible to follow who’s talking about what part of the project. Information gets lost and deadlines are still not being met.

This is why collaboration software is an essential part of any project team’s toolkit. PM tools can help your team work together effectively, be it through communication, file management, or automation of repetitive tasks.

In this blog post, we’ll review the 15 best project collaboration tools in 2023.

15 Best project collaboration tools in 2023 cover

What are project collaboration tools?

A project collaboration tool is project management software that facilitates collaboration.

Project collaboration is, in essence, the act of using communication, teamwork, and collaboration tools to boost project performance. It offers many benefits to a project, leading to an increase in:

  • A sense of belonging and responsibility in your project team,
  • Productivity,
  • Creativity, and 
  • Outcome quality.

Collaboration shines as one of the most important aspects of a project — especially in the modern era, as remote work gains in popularity. There is an ever-growing risk of team members feeling isolated and less involved in projects, and collaboration helps solve this issue. 

Most organizations use project management tools to improve project collaboration. But, not all tools are equally effective. The tools featured below were chosen and ranked by how well they fared in the following key categories:

  • Communication — through messaging, discussion boards, or email integration,
  • Team management — user profiles and administration that make it easy to determine who plays which role in a project,
  • Project management — milestones, time tracking, or calendaring, and
  • Project resource management — file storing, people management, time management, etc.

Where are project collaboration tools used?

Project collaboration tools are essential to almost any project.

As we’ve mentioned, collaboration is the driving force behind the success of your project team. So, having a tool that lets them collaborate will boost efficiency and quality of results.

Collaboration tools are most important in more elaborate projects, with a high number of iterations and moving parts, as team members will need to communicate and share files and ideas quite often.

How did we pick the best collaboration tools for project management?

To pick the best collaboration tool for a project, we need to look back to its key elements — communication, team, project, and resource management. 

These categories are our most important criteria and will help us search for the right features for the best collaboration tools. 

Besides those, we are looking for ease of use. That’s important no matter what aspect of a tool you’re focusing on, as it will allow your team to start collaborating in it sooner.

And finally, we’re looking at the pricing. We want to know if the tool is affordable, and if you can manage a functioning, collaborative project in that tool’s free plan.

An overview of the best project collaboration tools

We tested many different tools by these criteria and have come up with the following list.

#1: Plaky — best free project collaboration tool

Plaky’s activity log, source: Plaky
Plaky’s activity log, source: Plaky

Plaky is the best all-rounder for project collaboration, and — best of all — it offers all essential features in a generous free plan. 

Plaky makes communication easy and fluid, letting users know whenever there is a change in any task they are assigned to. It offers centralized file sharing, so all files relevant to the task can exist within it.

Plaky ProsPlaky Cons
Task-specific communicationLimited views
Centralized file sharingLimited integrations
Versatile free planNo automation options

What do you get with Plaky?

In Plaky, you can use the activity log to track changes on tasks or boards, and you’ll get notified of any changes occurring on the items you’re subscribed to. This improves transparency and lets everyone know the overall progress of the project.

You can check out everyone’s tasks’ progress on a public board, whether you are subscribed to that task or not. This lets team members coordinate better and keep track of the collective workload, as they know what everyone else is up to.

You can use comments, tags, and status fields to keep everyone notified of any information relevant to the task. You can also use @mentions while commenting to directly notify team members.

Plaky is very easy to learn and intuitive to use. It’s versatile, so you can use it for any type of project, and it won’t take long for your team to get a grip on its functionalities.

However, Plaky does not offer a timeline view, and it has limited integrations. It also offers no automation options, so be wary if you have plenty of repetitive tasks.

Why is Plaky the best free project collaboration tool?

Many PM tools offer a free plan, however, it is often quite limited. Plaky’s free plan is versatile, giving you all the necessary functionalities a collaboration tool should have.

Besides that, you get unlimited boards, team members, tasks, and more, all in Plaky’s free plan.

Plaky’s highlight feature is its task creation system. It offers more versatile options than its competitors — especially in their free plans. 

Besides many custom field options for the task, Plaky lets you keep all relevant files in the task card. You can also avoid losing time searching for files by utilizing search and filter options.

You can add assignees to tasks, create deadlines, introduce tags, and more. Furthermore, Plaky’s PM template center makes it easy to create project boards without having to start from scratch.

Available for: web, Android, iOS

Type of planPlaky free plan and pricing
Free trialYes
Free planYes, with unlimited members
Paid plansPro — $4.99/user/month (or $3.99/user/month billed annually)
Enterprise — $10.99/user/month (or $8.99/user/month billed annually)

#2: Asana — best for team communication

Bug tracking template in Asana, source: Asana
Bug tracking template in Asana, source: Asana

Asana is a well-regarded project management tool with collaboration capabilities that are easy to use.

It has a visual design that’s not just appealing, but also intuitive. Furthermore, Asana offers plenty of material — tutorials, guides, and forums — to help your team get used to its interface. 

Asana ProsAsana Cons
Plenty of chat optionsLimited free plan
Many integration optionsLimited reporting
Collaborative task optionsLimited mobile version

What do you get with Asana?

Many of Asana’s features allow for improved collaboration. A great example is the goal-tracking feature. 

You can set up project or team goals, define a deadline, and add subgoals to function as project OKRs. That way, the whole team can easily understand what they’re working towards.

Asana also lets you connect one task to multiple different projects, which makes collaboration between teams more fluid.

And, it has over 200 integrations to offer, with over 100 of them supported in the free plan.

Aside from that though, the free plan is limited. It does allow for 15 users, but most of the capabilities you’d want are hidden behind a paywall, so if you want a more affordable solution, you might want to look for a free Asana alternative

While Asana has reporting options, it leaves a bit to be desired in that department, as you can’t get certain advanced or customized reports out of it.

The mobile version of Asana is more limited, missing some functions, and making it overall more difficult to use on a smaller screen.

Why is Asana the best tool for team communication?

Asana is the best tool for team communication because it offers many avenues for your team to communicate. While many PM tools have message boards or comments, Asana beats them by sheer quantity.

It offers different chats for most areas of your project. There are conversation spaces specific to your team, project, and task, as well as an option for private messages.

Available for: web, Windows, macOS, iOS, Android

Type of planAsana free plan and pricing
Free trialYes, for 30 days
Free planYes, up to 15 members
Paid plansYes, starting from $10.99 per user per month

#3: Podio — best for automation

Client projects in Podio, source: Podio
Client projects in Podio, source: Podio

Podio is a project management tool created with a focus on automation and resource management. 

Collaboration does not only involve increasing communication — it also involves decreasing communication where it is unnecessary or disruptive. Automation helps with this issue by taking care of repetitive tasks.

Podio ProsPodio Cons
Great file sharingSteep learning curve
Automation optionsDifficult interface
Good email organizationNo markup attachments option

What do you get with Podio?

With Podio, you can improve your collaboration with great file sharing and many automation options.

Files are easily stored and easy to find. Anything that happens to a file in Podio is logged, making changes easy to track and revert, if necessary. The app also offers integrations with many file-sharing apps.

Podio has an extension — SwiftMail — that allows you to organize your email through the app. Sorting your email will let you communicate more effectively, as you won’t be cluttered with unnecessary information.

It doesn’t, however, let you mark up attachments. Implementing markup for attachments benefits collaboration greatly, as it allows team members to point out important aspects of a document to each other. So, it’s a shame that Podio, with such great file sharing, does not offer this feature.

Why is Podio best for automation?

When your project has plenty of repetitive tasks, it can get tiring to create them on a daily basis in your PM tool of choice. 

Podio’s automation options are among the most extensive of any tool on the market.

With Citrix Podio, you can make custom automation for a great number of situations. Most of the actions in Podio can be automated using certain triggers. They can even be used to create PDFs and insert graphs.

For a simple example, repetitive task automation can be set up. On a weekly basis, say, every Monday, Podio will set it up for you, set the due date, and assign the appropriate person.

But, so many capabilities come with a flaw — Podio can be difficult to get a hang of. Its interface is not the most intuitive to use.

Available for: web, Windows, macOS, iOS, Android

Type of planPodio free plan and pricing
Free trialNo
Free planYes
Paid plansYes, starting from $11.20 per month

#4: Scoro — best for project progress transparency

Scoro reports, source: Scoro
Scoro reports, source: Scoro

Scoro is a sales-focused project collaboration tool that allows you to streamline work and automate tasks. Collaboration is facilitated by automated reports, which inform each member of your team about the project’s progress.

Tasks can be easily divided into subtasks, which makes task tracking easier.

Scoro ProsScoro Cons
ReportingNo free plan
Agenda sharingLacks “set as default” option for certain parameters
Time tracking optionSteep learning curve

What do you get with Scoro?

Scoro allows you to focus on your team members, their current work, progress, and future plans. 

In Scoro, there’s an option of sharing an agenda — which means that everyone can see what time everyone’s meetings are set for. This helps to avoid double booking and let everyone know when important meetings are taking place, without the use of apps such as Google Calendar.

Scoro offers integration with time tracking software, which is great to find out how much time everyone spends on their tasks.

On the other hand, automation is limited, with Scoro lacking a “set as default” option for certain parameters.

And, unfortunately, Scoro doesn’t offer a free plan. However, it offers a 14-day free trial.

Why is Scoro best for project progress transparency?

Scoro aims to keep everyone in the loop by having a detailed and robust reporting system. This feature gets a dedicated tab in the interface. 

Reports serve to show your team the project’s status and future goals, as well as to validate their success in pushing the project forward. Some reports that serve this purpose are:

  • Detailed work report,
  • Work summary report,
  • Success report,
  • Utilization report, etc.

However, so many options leave it with the same issues many other apps face — it can be difficult to learn.

Available for: web, Windows, macOS, iOS, Android

Type of planScoro free plan and pricing
Free trialYes, for 14 days
Free planNo
Paid plansYes, starting from $26 per user per month

#5: Trello — best for smaller teams

Trello simple project template
Trello simple project template

Trello is a visual collaboration tool built on the Kanban framework. It aims to simplify the (over)flow of information that today’s project teams deal with.

Thanks to the visual clarity of Trello, team members can understand the current state of a project’s workflow at a glance. 

Trello ProsTrello Cons
Custom keyboard shortcutsLimited free version
Collaborative task managementPoor for complex projects
Customization optionsNo Gantt chart

What do you get with Trello?

With Trello, you get a PM tool that facilitates collaboration, all in a neat package of great visual design.

Almost anything you see in Trello can be customized. You can create custom fields by type, be it numbers, dropdown lists, checkboxes, etc. You can even change the background image of your project. 

Trello also allows for tasks to be shared among team members, as you can have multiple assignees on a single task.

Its greatest feature, though, is that it allows you to create keyboard shortcuts. You can create a shortcut to open the Trello app and one to create a task card. Unfortunately, you can only do this in Trello’s desktop app.

Besides custom shortcuts, Trello also has plenty of default shortcuts available. For example, you can use a shortcut to launch Trello from anywhere or scroll through boards more easily.

It does not offer a Gantt chart, which would do wonders to facilitate collaboration. On that note, many of its advanced capabilities are lacking compared to the competition.

The free version is also quite limited, for example, it allows only 10 boards per workspace. If you need more than that, you might want to look for a free Trello alternative that doesn’t impose that limit.

Why is Trello best for small teams?

Trello is best for small teams because it is very easy to learn, as it’s a great visual tool. In a small team, you generally spend less time on a PM tool, so being able to see everything clearly and quickly is amazing.

Trello’s most optimal plan seems to be the Standard plan, which is geared toward smaller teams. Most of what you need in a small team are the basic features. So, unlimited boards, custom fields, and the rest of the features you get with the Standard plan make it great for smaller teams.

Available for: web, Windows, macOS, Linux, iOS, Android

Type of planTrello free plan and pricing
Free trialYes, for 14 days
Free planYes, with unlimited members
Paid plansYes, starting from $5 per user per month

#6: ClickUp — best for real-time collaboration

ClickUp project management template
ClickUp project management template

ClickUp uses real-time updates to let you see what every team member is doing as they are doing it. 

It lets teams collaborate on a versatile platform great for many projects. It has many features that plenty of other tools also have, but it polishes them even more — features like reporting, automation, file organization, etc.

ClickUp ProsClickUp Cons
Real-time collaborationLimited resources in free plan
Time trackingDifficult to set up
Automation featuresSlightly cluttered notifications

What do you get with ClickUp?

With ClickUp, you get real-time collaboration, time tracking, and automation.

ClickUp has a built-in time tracker that lets you know who was working on which task, and when. Every task comes with a time tracker option.

It also offers plenty of automation tools, such as email-to-task. For example, in ClickUp, you can set up automatic assignee reassignment. 

Say your project is in graphic design. When a designer completes the task, they change the status to pending review, and the system automatically changes the assignee to the reviewer. After the reviewer is done, they change the status to reviewed, and the designer becomes the assignee again.

File sharing is important for collaboration, and ClickUp’s free plan unfortunately only gives you only 100MB of storage.

While ClickUp’s interface is well-designed, the initial setup can be challenging. The notification system can also cause issues if you’re working on a larger project, as its configuration options can be frustrating to find. If that’s a problem, a simpler, less convoluted alternative to ClickUp may be what you need.

Why is ClickUp best for real-time collaboration?

There are some tools besides ClickUp that offer real-time collaboration, but its real-time collaboration seems to be the most seamless. 

And, instead of just notifying you, it lets you literally work together with your colleagues, whether it be on a task description or comment — though it can be embarrassing to have team members witness all of your typos before you fix them.

Available for: web, Windows, macOS, Linux, iOS, Android

Type of planClickUp free plan and pricing
Free trialYes
Free planYes, with unlimited members
Paid plansYes, starting from $5 per member per month

#7: Atlassian’s Confluence — best for integrations

Confluence’s whiteboard feature, source: Atlassian’s Confluence
Confluence’s whiteboard feature, source: Atlassian’s Confluence

Confluence is Atlassian’s tool that aims to help improve your project collaboration through using whiteboards, integrations, and cross-team connections.

It encourages an open, idea-filled environment.

Confluence ProsConfluence Cons
Idea whiteboardConfusing permissions and user management
Page collaborationLimited free plan
Integration optionsSteep learning curve

What do you get with Confluence?

In Confluence, 2 main things help your collaboration — the idea white board and page collaboration. 

Confluence uses the idea whiteboard to improve iteration, brainstorming, and idea creation. It involves sticky notes, votes, timers, etc. The sticky notes can be converted into Jira issues, which is another PM tool made by Atlassian.

Similar to ClickUp, Confluence updates tasks and pages in real-time. Every page also offers a comment space, as well as the ability to mention team members. 

However, managing permissions and users in Confluence can get a bit complicated. It lacks structure and can therefore make information difficult to search for.

Confluence’s free plan is also quite limited, omitting user permissions and calendars.

Why is Confluence best for integrations?

Integrations are a large part of collaboration, as they allow team members to connect their project tool with other apps that facilitate collaboration further. It’s also great for when your team is used to working on a specific app already, to be able to implement it with your PM tool of choice.

Confluence offers more than 2,000 integration options, so it should cover almost anything your team desires. While integrations are common in most PM tools, no other tool offers as many as Atlassian’s Confluence does.

Available for: web, Windows, macOS, Linux, iOS, Android

Type of planConfluence free plan and pricing
Free trialYes, for 30 days
Free planYes, for 10 users
Paid plansYes, starting from $5.75 per member per month

#8: Miro — the best visual idea-sharing tool

Whiteboard brainstorming in Miro, source: Miro
Whiteboard brainstorming in Miro, source: Miro

Miro is all about the visuals. Everybody can share their creative ideas with their team easily in Miro’s mind maps, whiteboards, and videos.

If you want a place to brainstorm, iterate, and share ideas visually — Miro is the tool for you.

Miro ProsMiro Cons
Plenty of visual tools to share ideasLacks integrations
Supports different formatsLimited free version
Easy to learnUI can get busy

What do you get with Miro?

In Miro, you get a great space for your team to collaborate on ideas and share them in real time, so much so that many users describe it as the closest you can get to physically being in a room with your colleagues while remote.

For example, a Capterra user, Jonathan E, says “Miro manages to completely make you forget about physical whiteboards by providing a perfect digital equivalent, with all the associated benefits that a digital tool brings.”

It offers plenty of templates to help you set up an activity or a meeting, which is great for learning to use a PM tool with a non-traditional user interface.

Miro also supports many formats — whether it’s a pdf, image, or video, you can create it within the app and share it with your team seamlessly.

As it is a visual tool, Miro’s visual design is superb — which makes it super easy to learn. Although, especially during meetings, the UI can become busy at times.

Besides that, Miro has a limited free version, which gives you just one workspace with 3 boards. 

It also lacks integrations, though it offers some of the more popular ones, like Teams and Google Workspace.

Why is Miro the best visual idea-sharing tool?

Miro highlights collaborative work by allowing team members to use whiteboards and iterate, brainstorm, and communicate in real-time. 

Its collaborative whiteboards work in real-time and can be used “freehand”, which means you can essentially draw on it with your team members. 

You can use sticky notes, mind maps, images, etc., and save sessions for future reference.

Available for: web, Windows, macOS, Linux, iOS, Android

Type of planMiro free plan and pricing
Free trialNo
Free planYes, with unlimited members
Paid plansYes, starting from $8 per member per month

#9: Hive — best for setting clear expectations

Hive content calendar template, source: Hive
Hive content calendar template, source: Hive

Hive is a collaboration-focused project management tool that relies on user forum votes to determine new features. So, users have a say in what new features will be added in the future.

It has a smooth interface with collaboration and communication features to help you meet your project deadlines by letting you focus on the tasks.

Hive ProsHive Cons
Time trackingLimited mobile app
Collaborative task viewsNotifications are difficult to find after reading
Easier proofingLimited reporting

What do you get with Hive?

Hive gives you all the capabilities of a PM tool created through a collaborative lens.

It lets you use collaborative board views — Calendar, Team, and Gantt chart views let everyone know what the whole team is up to, with full transparency. It also makes task expectations more clear, with great task layouts.

Hive also offers a time tracking feature, which allows you to keep track of what team members are working on and when.

Hive has a solid reporting feature, but it does lack more advanced reports. It offers just 4 different ways of reporting.

The mobile app also offers fewer functionalities than the desktop version, which can make it difficult to use on the go.

While notifications are well done in Hive, after reading them, it can be difficult to find the archived ones, as read notifications disappear from your inbox.

Why is Hive best for clear expectations?

Expectations are important in project collaboration — your team needs to have their due dates, responsibilities, and tasks clearly communicated.

Hive allows for this with great task creation options, as well as its use of layouts and collaborative task views. Through this, the whole team knows what is expected of them, both individually and as a whole team.

Hive offers a proofing feature in its tasks, which allows for easier task reviews, without unnecessary back-and-forth up the review chain. 

When a team member creates an image, video, or MS Office file that needs to be approved, they can submit it in this feature. Then, they add an “approver”, who will be taken to a tab where they can leave comments and notes on that file.

Available for: web, Windows, macOS, Linux, iOS, Android

Type of planHive free plan and pricing
Free trialYes, for 14 days
Free planYes, for 10 members
Paid plansYes, starting from $12 per member per month

#10: ProofHub — best for mid-sized teams

ProofHub interface, source: ProofHub
ProofHub interface, source: ProofHub

ProofHub is a collaborative tool that aims to keep your project clear and help your team get on the same page.

It offers many communication features, like discussion boards that support inviting project stakeholders to keep them in the loop. Communication enables collaboration, and ProofHub aims to be on par with Asana in this regard.

ProofHub ProsProofHub Cons
Discussion boardsNotification overflow
Resource managementLimited integrations
Good user interfaceNo free plan

What do you get with ProofHub?

ProofHub’s greatest feature is definitely its discussion boards.

You can use them to communicate with your team regarding specific areas of your project. As we mentioned, you can even add stakeholders to the conversation. There is also an instant messaging option, in case you need to address something to a single team member.

It makes file sharing fluid, letting you keep resources relevant to tasks in one place. Time tracking features also allow you to keep track of human resources.

The UI is also very intuitive, which makes the tool easy to use. It uses colors and its layout to great effect, so you can pick up on the most important pieces of information quickly.

Managing notifications can be a tad difficult in ProofHub. The lack of filtering in notifications makes it easy to get overwhelmed by the amount of information coming your way.

ProofHub’s integrations are also very limited, as it has less than 20 to offer. It also does not offer a free plan.

Why is ProofHub best for mid-sized teams?

ProofHub is best for mid-sized teams as it offers advanced features that are unnecessary to small teams, while still being a bit behind the competition in more advanced features. 

And, just like with Trello, the plan that seems most optimal in ProofHub — the Ultimate Control plan — is best for a mid-sized team.

Available for: web, Windows, macOS, Linux, iOS, Android

Type of planProofHub free plan and pricing
Free trialYes, for 14 days
Free planNo
Paid plansYes, starting from $45 per month

#11: Smartsheet — best for scaling teams

Smartsheet campaign plan template, source: Smartsheet
Smartsheet campaign plan template, source: Smartsheet

Smartsheet is a project management tool that enables collaboration through managing projects and portfolios in an interconnected view.

It updates information in real-time to keep your team and stakeholders up to date on the project’s progress. Additionally, it uses Gantt charts to help everyone stick to deadlines more efficiently.

Smartsheet ProsSmartsheet Cons
Stakeholder inclusionDifficult to adapt to
Easily scalableLimited free plan
Great integrationsLimited mobile app

What do you get with Smartsheet?

Smartsheet allows for stakeholder inclusion — all stakeholders can be added to a sheet, work on it simultaneously, and get notified on its progress. You can also share reports with stakeholders easily, with just a couple of clicks.

It has over 90 integration options to help your team use third-party apps they’d like to add to the project.

With so many options, Smartsheet can be a bit difficult to learn, which can cause issues in collaboration until your team gets used to it. The interface is not as intuitive as some other tools in the industry.

The mobile app and the free plan are limited. Unlike some Smartsheet alternatives, the free plan allows for just 1 user, which is not suitable for most projects.

Why is Smartsheet best for scaling?

Smartsheet has customizable plans and packages, letting you bring new team members on board easily. It even has a scaling webinar, i.e. an online tutorial on scaling for its users.

Its plans contain all you will need for a team of any size, so you won’t need to switch plans often as you scale.

Available for: web, Windows, macOS, Linux, iOS, Android

Type of planSmartsheet free plan and pricing
Free trialYes, for 30 days
Free planYes, for one user and up to 2 editors
Paid plansYes, starting from $7 per user per month

#12: Wrike — best for project clarity

Collaboration through communication in Wrike, source: Wrike
Collaboration through communication in Wrike, source: Wrike

Wrike is a project management tool that aims to help its users be more collaborative through clarity in communication. It’s great for midsize to large teams.

It uses reporting, request forms, and a cloud-powered workspace to help you meet your project deliverables in time.

Wrike ProsWrike Cons
Great automationLimited free plan
Request formsLimited integrations
Good reportingSteep learning curve

What do you get with Wrike?

With Wrike, you can automate tasks to remove unnecessary communication and repetitive tasks. You can set up specific triggers that perform an action if or when something happens in your project.

The automation works as a “WHEN — THEN” function. If WHEN is triggered, THEN performs an action. For example, when the status of a task doesn’t change for a specific time, the task’s assignee is automatically @mentioned in a comment.

There is a limit to the number of rules you can create depending on your plan, though it is unlikely you will reach it. 

Due to these extensive options, Wrike is another app with a high learning curve that may make you look for an easier-to-learn Wrike alternative.

Wrike has fewer than 50 integrations to offer, putting it below the average compared to the competition. 

The free plan is also limited, just like Smartsheet, allowing for just 1 user. So, it is near impossible to use the free plan for a collaborative project.

Why is Wrike best for clear expectations?

A feature we just mentioned, request forms, is what lets Wrike help its users make tasks with clear, easily understood expectations. This is an avenue of communication that is very rarely seen in PM tools, and Wrike utilizes it considerably.

Admins can create request forms, which can be submitted by any user. You can use request forms to ask questions to your team within tasks, in order to get in-context feedback and manage work delegation.

They can also be used to automatically create or duplicate tasks or projects. 

Couple that with an interface that is visually clear, and a good task creation feature, and you can let your team members know every necessary detail about the tasks they’ll be working on.

Available for: web, Windows, macOS, iOS, Android

Type of planWrike free plan and pricing
Free trialYes, for 14 days
Free planYes, for one user
Paid plansYes, starting from $9.80 per user per month

#13: Basecamp — best for resource management

Project view in Basecamp, source: Basecamp
Project view in Basecamp, source: Basecamp

As one of the oldest PM tools out there, Basecamp has been in the business for almost 2 decades. All that experience translates to a tool that’s streamlined and brimming with great collaboration features for your team.

The main appeal of Basecamp is its lack of complexity — it aims to maintain clarity in everything, whether it be your project, team members’ roles, or tasks.

Basecamp ProsBasecamp Cons
Clear overviewPossibly too simple
Resource managementLack of features on mobile
Easy to useNot ideal for complex projects

What do you get with Basecamp?

As we mentioned, Basecamp sticks to the basics, which leads to a clear overview of the project for anyone who starts up the app.

It has a minimalistic approach, which makes it easy to keep roles, projects, and tasks clear and easy to understand.

This simplicity comes with a flaw, though, as it can seem too simple at times. It has little to no customization options. This makes it poor for larger and more complex projects.

Just like many apps, its mobile version is limited. It takes away some of Basecamp’s functionalities and is generally less satisfying to use than the desktop one.

Why is Basecamp best for resource management?

Basecamp’s resource management feature lets it claim the title of “best” in this category.

Basecamp offers not only a place to share files relevant to your project but also ways to organize files and resources effectively by splitting them into folders.

Any PM tool has a file sharing feature, however, Basecamp’s creative decision to allow users to organize their files is both great for the user’s resource management and makes it stand out from the competition.

It couples that with a fun UI design inspired by file sharing — everything looks like it’s stored in a neat file cabinet.

Available for: web, Windows, macOS, iOS, Android

Type of planBasecamp free plan and pricing
Free trialYes, for 30 days
Free planNo
Paid plansYes, starting from $15 per user per month

#14: monday.com — best all-rounder collaboration tool

Volunteer registration management template in Monday, source: Monday
Volunteer registration management template in monday.com, source: monday.com

monday.com is a collaborative project management tool that has an intuitive interface and visual progress tracking to help your team achieve better results.

monday.com also aims to make communication easier, offering many avenues for different types of discussions.

monday.com Prosmonday.com Cons
Simple to learnLimited free plan
Progress trackingTakes a while to set up
Centralized communicationSubitem issues

What do you get with monday.com?

With monday.com, you get a bunch of useful features.

It aims to keep all of your communication in one place, reducing the need to use any third-party communication apps. You can communicate in tasks, but your team can also communicate in a chat dedicated to the entire board.

monday.com has another great communication feature — status bar notes. Let’s say your status bar has an option for “stuck”. With this feature, your team members can leave notes on the status bar, detailing why they are “stuck” on a specific task.

It uses progress tracking to help you meet deadlines, with the status of tasks becoming apparent at a quick glance.

And finally, it’s simple to learn, letting your team focus on collaboration sooner.

But, even though it’s intuitive, with so many features, setting up monday.com for the first time can be a bit time-consuming. 

There are also occasional subitem issues. Most notably, if you set up an automation that transfers an item to another board once it’s completed, it might not take the subitems with it. 

For example, a Capterra user, Josh T encountered a similar issue: “For example, I can set an automation so that if a status changes to a particular thing, then the item is moved to another board. However, when that happens, there is no way to make it bring the subitems with it. I can bring the subitems with it when I move the item manually, but I don’t want to have to do that every time.”

And, unsurprisingly and unfortunately, the free version is very limited. It offers just 2 users and 3 boards, but you can find a solid monday.com alternative without this limit.

Why is monday.com the best all-rounder collaboration tool?

monday.com is a jack-of-all-trades PM tool. It has all the capabilities you want a collaboration tool to have.

Because monday.com chose not to focus on just one aspect of collaboration, it has plenty of good features, making it the best all-rounder tool. It stands out from other collaboration tools in how well-polished every specific feature is, even if other tools have it too.

Available for: web, Windows, macOS, iOS, Android

Type of planmonday.com free plan and pricing
Free trialYes (14-day free trial)
Free planYes, up to 2 team members
Paid plansYes, starting from $8 per user per month

#15: Teamwork — best for workload management

Workload feature in Teamwork, source: Teamwork
Workload feature in Teamwork, source: Teamwork

Teamwork is a collaborative project management tool built originally for client work. 

It helps your team keep track of what everyone is doing with Gantt charts, Kanban views, and communication through comments and mentions.

Teamwork ProsTeamwork Cons
Workload featureFew customization options
Outlook communicationLimited mobile version
Built-in chat platformLimited free plan

What do you get with Teamwork?

Teamwork lets you set up milestones for your project as you’re making it, making the whole team aware of the project goals at all times.

It has a built-in chat platform, centralizing all communication. Teamwork communication support extends to Outlook as well.

But, it offers few customization options. The mobile version and free plan are also limited.

Why is Teamwork best for workload management?

Teamwork’s best feature is also what makes it best in this category — the workload feature.

It lets everyone know how much work each member of your team has, letting other team members know how busy they are. It also lets managers know how to reassign tasks as needed to stop everyone from burning out.

Available for: web, Windows, macOS, Linux, iOS, Android

Type of planTeamwork free plan and pricing
Free trialYes, for 30 days
Free planYes, up to 5 users
Paid plansYes, starting from $5.99 per user per month, billed annually 

Conclusion: Using a PM tool will improve your project collaboration by a long shot

Now that you know what the 15 best collaboration tools are, it’s time to ask yourself specific questions about how your team should use them. 

”What is it that my project needs?”

“Do my team members need many avenues of communication?” 

“Does my project require plenty of file organization?” 

“What tool works best for the scale of my team?”

The answers to these questions will determine the right collaboration PM tool for you. We hope this list will help you make that choice.

✉️ Has this guide helped you choose the right project collaboration tool for you? Have you used any of these tools before? Let us know at blogfeedback@plaky.com, and we may include your answers in this or future posts. If you liked this blog post and found it useful, share it with someone you think would also benefit from it.