Designers and creative professionals often juggle several projects simultaneously, which makes it difficult for them to manage deadlines while also maintaining quality.
Balancing creativity and order is often difficult, but in the modern work environment, it is highly necessary. That’s why many companies rely on using project management tools for designers.
The ability to keep a project organized can make you a standout as a designer and get you recognition in your field. But, with so many different options available, it can get a tad bit overwhelming.
- Project management software solutions for small businesses
- Virtual office software for remote teams
- Document collaboration tools for remote teams
To make things easier, here’s our list of the seven best project management tools for designers.
ClickUp is a fantastic project management tool that designers can use to keep everything in one place. From creating tasks to setting goals and from milestone generation to creating reporting dashboards, ClickUp has it all.
Why ClickUp for Designers?
ClickUp is a great app that combines features from several applications, blending them together in one easy-to-use platform.
It’s a fantastic application that gives you an array of powerful tools to structure your project management workflow however you want easily. Whether you work with a small team of designers or operate in a large enterprise with multiple design teams, ClickUp is highly scalable and can be customized to meet a company’s specific needs.
What Are The Features of ClickUp?
- Lets you break down tasks into nested items for improved tracking
- Simple drag-and-drop functionality
- Comprehensive document management functionality
- Easily create automation
Pros of ClickUp
- Free version available
- Custom dashboard templates
- Time tracking
- You can create goals, milestones, or generate automatic activity reports
Cons of ClickUp
- Learning curve is a bit steep
- The sheer number of features might seem a bit overwhelming for designers
ClickUp has a ton of options in their pricing plan. They do have a free plan that you can opt-in for, and truth be told, it’s quite a rich one. Their premium plans start from $5 per member per month.
What’s also interesting is that ClickUp is offering “Let’s make a deal” option where you can state how much you are willing to pay for their service and provide them with information about your company. So if you’re a good negotiator, this might be the best option for you!
Atarim is a visual feedback tool that designers can use to simplify their workflows and manage time more effectively. It’s a perfect tool for website development, as it allows designers to easily submit projects and get visual feedback from clients.
Why Atarim for Designers?
Atarim offers Kanban boards for task management, and it even lets designers track time more efficiently to ensure no hour goes unbilled. A major advantage that Atarim has over conventional project management tools is that clients can leave comments on specific parts of the design, making it much easier for your team to know exactly what changes need to be made.
What Are The Features of Atarim?
- Centralized inbox for managing requests
- Simplifies asset management in the backend
- Automatically converts comments into tasks
- Easily create internal team requests to discuss points with other designers
Pros of Atarim
- Free version available
- Reduces time-to-completion and minimizes back-and-forth communication
- Lets designers manage multiple projects seamlessly
Cons of Atarim
- Full version required to unlock more features
Atarim has a free plan which is perfect if you want to explore it more. Their premium plans start from $16/month, and with it, you will have up to 5 seats available, unlimited clients & collaborations, 20 active assets (including images and sites), and everything you need to manage your web design business.
Asana is one of the most popular collaboration tools on the market. Used by software development agencies, designers, and businesses alike, it’s a fantastic project management tool that offers a wide range of excellent features, such as expense tracking, budgeting, and the freedom to manage tasks more efficiently.
Why Asana for Designers?
Asana has hundreds of integrations that designers can use to augment their workflows, such as time tracking, managing open applications, and creating automation.
Thanks to the Clockwise integration, you can now also integrate tasks with your calendar app, making it easy to use time-blocking as a productivity technique.
What Are The Features of Asana?
- Various task views, including Kanban, calendars, or Gantt charts
- You can create dependencies within tasks
- Set priorities for tasks
Pros of Asana
- Supports custom fields
- Comprehensive reporting tools
- Integrations available for all popular apps
Cons of Asana
- No visual feedback options
- Priced slightly higher than other competitors
Asana has a free plan, and frankly, if you’re using it for a basic project and task management, it may be all you need. However, if you want to level up the game, their premium plans start from $10.99 per month per user if paid annually.
Asana has been around for a very long time, and some of the features from their premium plans are still leading in the project management and task management industry.
ProofHub is a great visual feedback tool that’s ideal for project management. Like most other options on this list, ProofHub also has various project views, including Kanban boards, Gantt charts, and conventional table views.
Why ProofHub for Designers?
Designers can define custom roles and create workflows to ensure projects continue to run smoothly. It is a cloud-based project management and collaboration tool that helps teams stay organized and productive.
It offers a variety of features, such as task management, messaging, file sharing, and time tracking, all of which allow users such as designers to manage projects effectively.
ProofHub is perfect for businesses of all scales and can be used by teams of any size. Plus, it's affordable and easy to use, making it a great choice for busy professionals.
Simply put, if you know how to leverage all of its benefits, ProofHub can be used to replace six to seven apps easily, making it the “engine” of your design team.
Assignees have a private space that they can manage on their own, and it has all the features that you’d expect from a top-tier management tool, such as time tracking, requisition forms, labels, and more.
What Are The Features of ProofHub?
- Lets you define milestones and create checkpoints
- Comprehensive file management system
- Easy CSV import option
- Get activity updates and review task history
Pros of ProofHub
- Integrated chat feature
- Annotations available for files to improve review and proofing
- Custom reporting, including resource and workload reports
Cons of ProofHub
- The user interface is a bit difficult to navigate
- Software tends to get slow when multiple users are uploading or managing files
ProofHub doesn’t have a free plan, but you can book a demo with them and test out all of their features. There is also a free trial based on the plan you pick.
They have 2 premium plans – Essential, which starts from $45 per month (billed annually), and Ultimate Control which starts from $89 per month (also billed annually). They also have a 15 days refund policy in case you don’t find the product to be what you expected.
Monday.com dubs itself the “Work OS”, and for a good reason. monday.com is a project management tool that helps teams of all sizes collaborate and coordinate their efforts more effectively.
It's an online platform with a variety of features that allow users to track tasks, assign deadlines, share files, and communicate with one another in real-time. Whether you're looking to manage a small project or take your design team's productivity to the next level, you can customize this tool to fit your needs.
Why Monday.com for Designers?
It allows designers to create simple automation with monday.com to bridge gaps between multiple departments and stay in the loop about the latest updates. Its simple and intuitive interface makes it easy to create and manage projects, tasks, and files.
In addition to the features that make project management easier, monday.com also offers integrations with other applications such as Slack and Google Drive, making it a powerful tool for collaboration.
Designers looking for an alternative to traditional project management tools such as Asana or Trello will definitely find monday.com to be a viable choice.
You can create various columns to manage workflows, ranging from time management to tracking projects as they move through different stages. This makes it easy for users to gain a high-level understanding of project flows.
What Are The Features of Monday.com?
- End-to-end project management
- Automations can help reduce low-impact work
- Polished user interface
- Free version available
- Highly versatile tool with extensive customization
- Integrates with all popular work apps
- Doesn’t have comprehensive task dependencies
- No built-in option to assign comments
- Idea management features are limited
Monday.com has a free plan for up to 2 seats, and it’s basically for individuals who are looking to keep track of their work.
There are various premium plans, and they start from $8 per seat per month.
Trello is a project management tool that is simple, visually appealing, and versatile. It was created in 2011 by Fog Creek Software and has become one of the most popular project management tools available. It was acquired by Atlassian, the Australian software giant.
Trello is used by businesses, freelancers, designers, and individuals for a variety of purposes, such as keeping track of tasks, creating checklists, collaborating with others, and a whole lot more.
Why Trello for Designers?
Trello’s greatest strength lies in its use of Kanban boards. They come in many shapes and sizes, but the premise is always the same: you have a list of items to do on one side and cards or sticky notes representing each item on the other.
As you work on tasks, you move them from left to right, towards “done”. This helps keep project managers or designers organized and makes it easy to see where any bottlenecks are.
It’s one of the first apps that popularized this format and has continued to add a whole bunch of features, such as custom automations, dedicated templates, and a ton of integrations.
What Are The Features of Trello?
- Hundreds of integrations
- Custom project views available
- Powerful no-code automations
- Ability to create rules and commands to track performance
- Has a free version
- A simple tool that’s ideal for small design teams
- Suitable for smaller projects and doesn’t get overwhelming
- Not exactly a fully-featured project management tool
- Limited communication features (supports commenting on tasks)
- Often requires using multiple apps instead of an all-in-one solution
Trello also has a free plan that you can use for personal needs and organization, and truth be told, if that’s the case, you will never need to upgrade.
Trello’s premium plans start as low as $5 per month per user if you’re paying annually and $6 if you prefer monthly billing.
It would be inaccurate to describe Notion as a project management tool. Notion is an all-in-one workspace application that helps businesses increase their productivity by streamlining workflows.
With Notion, you can create custom workspaces for your team, complete with task lists, calendars, file storage, and more. You can also integrate Notion with other applications like Slack, Zapier, and Google Drive to create even more powerful workflows.
It’s an app that uses “blocks” to help users create relational databases and “connect” tasks.
Why Notion for Designers?
Notion advertises itself as the “all-in-one workspace for your notes, docs, wikis, and databases”, and that's not far from the truth. With its clean design and simple interface, Notion makes it easy for businesses including designers to centralize all of their projects and tasks in one place.
It also includes features such as Kanban boards, calendars, and to-do lists that businesses can use to manage their workflows more effectively.
Notion also offers a number of templates that businesses can use to get started with their workspace. These templates include everything from project management workflows to team databases.
And if you need more flexibility than is offered by the templates, you can always create your own custom pages using the drag-and-drop interface.
What Are The Features of Notion?
- Fully customizable interface
- Tons of free templates available
- Ideal for workflow management
Pros of Notion
- Free version available
- Fully customizable to meet the needs of any design team
- A clean interface that’s infinitely scalable
Cons of Notion
- Can be a bit tricky to learn
- Notion’s not always the best for project views
- It takes a bit of time to set up custom views
Just like Asana and Trello, Notion has a very good free plan that should fulfill all your needs in case you’re just looking for one place where to keep track of everything.
If you decide to step up your organization, Notion premium plans start from $4 per month per user if billed annually ($5 if billed monthly).
Which Project Management Tool Should Designers Use?
If are looking for a project management tool that is specifically designed for creatives, then Atarim is a great option, relied on by many successful web agencies.
However, if you want a conventional project management tool and wish to customize it for your needs, then monday.com, Trello, Notion, ProofHub, and others may be better suited for your needs. Try out a few different tools to see which one works best for you and your design team.