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Free and low-cost online project management tools

3-minute read

Feel like you’re spending too much time assigning project tasks and updating team members on internal progress, especially when they’re working remotely? It may be time to think about online project management tools.

This category focuses on tools that simplify the process of managing projects online. It includes any application that can help you work with others to successfully accomplish specific tasks and report on a project’s progress.

  • Many of the solutions presented here include a time-tracking component. If all you want to know is how much time you spend on a given project, you may want to check out the applications listed under Online timesheet tracking tools.
  • We also encourage you to visit the Online collaboration tools page to learn more about enterprise social networks, whiteboards and knowledge management applications.

How do online project management tools help?

Online project management tools offer the following key benefits:

  • Better alignment of project goals
  • Real-time and accurate tracking of overall project performance
  • Visibility into other people’s work and progress
  • Improved communication
  • A greater sense of involvement and belonging through online communities
  • Improved morale and productivity across geographic and organizational boundaries
  • Reduced risk through early identification of bottlenecks
  • Time and cost savings by reducing unnecessary emails and meetings

How do online project management tools work?

Online project management tools allow businesses to host their own workspaces to manage certain projects and foster improved collaboration among employees. Typically, users need to download and install a program, or simply log in online, to create tasks, participate in discussions or edit, store and share documents. These applications usually include activity streams allowing users to easily find out who changed what and when and share feedback.

Free and low-cost online project management tools

If you’re looking for a low-cost or free solution, consider the following cloud-based applications.

Revised May 2024

This table lists applications alphabetically and isn’t exhaustive. Hyperlinks to external sites do not constitute endorsement by BDC of those websites or any information, opinions, products or services expressed or described on them.

Furthermore, the list is only a starting point and excludes applications that are neither low cost nor free. When assessing online collaboration tools for your organization, you will probably consider many other factors.

BDC will review and edit this list regularly. If you are an online collaboration tool vendor and would like us to consider adding your solution, please contact us.

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