Entrepreneurs who are getting their startups off the ground have a lot of expenses to think about but there are several online services that will help their teams collaborate at no cost at all. These free project management tools help startups not just with getting their tasks done but also help them track the progress of these tasks.
Google Docs allow teams can work on spreadsheets simultaneously with Google Docs’ spreadsheet. While the spreadsheet is not as powerful as Microsoft Excel in terms of formulas, the collaborative nature of the software makes it very useful for teams that need to work on simple datasets. The documents and spreadsheets that users can create with Google Docs are easily shared and users just need a Gmail or Google account to use and access their Google Docs.
Trello lets team members create “cards” or tasks that they can transfer onto different columns. The columns lets everyone on the team know what each team member is working on and the progress of each tasks. Managers can add cards or tasks and assign these to a particular team member or members. The basic service is free but they’re offering “Trello Gold” where users get additional stickers and board backgrounds. Users can get the Trello Gold for free by inviting new members or pay $5 a month or $45 a year for the extra service.
Asana is another collaborative task management tool that startups can consider. Users can create, assign, follow, and comment on tasks and its makers hope Asana takes the place of email and by creating a space where all of the team communicates. Tasks can be assigned to one member than followers can be added to the tasks so that they can be updated on its progress. Priorities and due dates can also be set for the tasks to make it easier for project managers to hit team milestones.
Based on a Gantt chart that illustrates a project schedule, TeamWeek allows startup teams to plan a project based on a timeline. They say their program’s interface is “so simple that your grandmother can use it.” Like the other programs on the list, the tasks can be assigned to team members but TeamWeek also lets the user assign resources for the task. TeamWeek is free for teams of up to five members with increasing rates for teams with more members. They also have apps available to make it easier to use the chart on tablets.