You know that New Year’s resolution you made to be more organized? Well, its time to get started. Now that the holidays are behind us and we are starting out the New Year, we can bring our focus back to working, whether we’re laboring in the office, at home or on the road. Getting the right tools is half the battle.
The number of project management tools available can be mind-boggling. Business-related apps currently account for 10% of all apps downloaded from the Apple Store (and that’s a lot of apps! Over 75 BILLION apps have been downloaded from Apple alone). Apps exclusively designed to enhance productivity account for another 3% of total apps retrieved. The point is – it’s a huge industry, and it might start to feel like you need an app just to manage all your management apps! But that’s a little crazy. So instead, here are five popular, free choices, that are worth a second look:
Perhaps the most popular choice, Asana comes to us from one of the co-founders of Facebook, Dustin Moskovitz. Asana is an intuitive task-management system that works in real time. Use it to visualize goals, track time, assign priorities and receive updates on progress. If you’re running marketing campaigns, this handy little tool can keep them on track and on time. Available online
This simple management system uses “cards” to represent any given task and a visual representation of where the project lies in development. Examining the alignment of the cards allows the use to see how far along a project is and what to work on next. While the front of the card has a mere task label, the back can be filled with all kinds of information, who is working on the task, when it’s due, and what parts of the task have already been completed. This tool works well for collaboration on multiple tasks, especially for small teams, and can be an effectively tool for organizing your own workflow as well. Available online
A simple name for a powerful productivity tool, Do helps you share files seamlessly with other team members. If you add tasks or plan events, you can add a person to the team with just an e-mail. The main dashboard is simple and easy to use by starting a project, entering a task and then inviting a colleague to join the team. Available online or while logged in to Google.
The first three tiers of this platform are available at no cost and others come with a paid upgrade, but the free trio comes packed with features:
- 2-Plan Desktop: A complete project management system
- 2-Plan Team: An online project management tool for multiple members
- Work 2-Gether: A task management board for single team integration
Whether you’re using the free version or one of the paid options, 2-Plan gives many more than just two options for marketing success. Available for free download
Among its many features, it permits users to create tasks that belong in multiple task lists, offers real-time communication between users, features results measurement and progress tracking, and lets users turn emails into tasks with a few simple clicks. No matter how you pronounce it, Producteev can make your marketing efforts more productive in 2015. Available online.
BONUS: Apple’s 2012 App Pick of the Year
Though it is not a project management app, Paper is a great way to capture thoughts and ideas without using a keyboard. It allows the user to make sketches, diagrams, and other visual data. The free app includes a basic drawing tool, reminiscent of the lines created by a fine fountain pen, along with many other colorful and useful features. Don’t use all these apps – that would just be crazy. But we’d love to hear what apps work best for you. What are your favorite project management tools? Tweet @TINT to let us know. Here’s to a more productive, organized and well-managed New Year!
Nick Rojas is a business consultant and writer who lives in Los Angeles and Chicago. He has consulted small and medium-sized enterprises for over twenty years. He has contributed articles to Visual.ly, Entrepreneur, and TechCrunch. You can follow him on Twitter @NickARojas, or you can reach him at NickAndrewRojas@gmail.com.