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What Is Agile Project Management Software? And How to Choose One for You?

If you struggle to juggle your project goals, tasks, and customer feedback, consider agile project management software. How would it help? Agile project management tools drive your teammates together to deliver projects quickly without hampering the quality.

To understand the benefits of agile tools, you need to get an idea of the agile approach and learn how agile project management software works. This is what we are going to discover in this article.

What Is Agile Project Management Software?

Before answering this question, here’s a short description of the agile framework: you create a project plan, develop a product, let customers test it, and implement the changes. You can run through the same stages until satisfactory results.

To improve each of these stages, agile project management software comes with features for sprint planning, collaboration, and bug tracking. With dashboards, lists, and graphs, you get a better picture of what’s happening. Team chats and task commenting add to team efficiency and speed up project delivery.

The agile method’s flexibility and scalability attract many project managers. Still, agile project management is a general term that includes several subtypes: Scrum, Kanban, Lean, Extreme Programming, and Adaptive Project Framework. Let’s discover how each of them works.

What Are the 5 Types of Agile Methodology?

What is Agile?

According to the Project Management Institute, the purpose of the Agile method is to create a measurable ROI by iterative project delivery. The team continuously involves customer feedback to meet their expectations on the highest level. Besides, agile processes run with strict alignment with the agile values and principles like cooperation, frequent delivery, stable work environment, etc.

What is Scrum?

Scrum is a popular Agile framework that has a specific structure: each team includes several roles responsible for particular tasks. The work is divided into sprints that usually take from two to four weeks. Each sprint should end with project delivery. Finally, the team reviews the sprint and makes conclusions to consider during the next sprint.

What is the difference between Agile and Scrum?

Agile vs Scrum are easy to confuse since both rest on iterative development, interactions with clients, and team collaboration. So what is a Scrum in Agile?

  • While Agile is a project management philosophy, Scrum is one of its frameworks.
  • Scrum involves several deliverables, while Agile unites everything into one final delivery.
  • Agile encourages collaboration across teams, while Scrum includes roles like Product Owner or Scrum Master for each team.

What is Kanban?

Kanban visualizes workflow and keeps everyone on the same page. The Kanban board displays the progress of each workpiece, including its status, assignees, and due dates. The main difference between Agile vs Kanban is that Kanban doesn’t involve iteration.

What is Lean Software Development?

Lean is about eliminating everything that brings no value to the process. This rule helps to improve the process and deliver the product as fast as possible. It’s rather a way of thinking than a set of rules.

What is Extreme Programming (XP)?

Extreme Programming breaks work into iterative sprints and encourages teamwork, communication, and customer feedback. It involves project testing throughout the whole development process to increase the outcome’s quality and speed.

What is Adaptive Project Framework (APF)?

Adaptive Project Framework makes a client the central figure in project development. The direction of the process majorly depends on customer feedback, so the team constantly adapts to the changing project environment.

What Is Waterfall Project Management?

Unlike the other agile approaches, the Waterfall methodology is linear and sequential. It includes the following stages:

  • Requirements
  • Design
  • Implementation
  • Testing
  • Deployment
  • Maintenance

Thus, gathering and understanding project requirements is the initial and critical step in this framework. It defines the project plan where each step flows into the next one making it similar to a waterfall. Gannt charts belong to the favorite tools of Waterfall project teams.

The Waterfall approach is traditional in project management and has long been used in construction. Over time, IT and software developers adapted it to their frameworks.

Agile vs Waterfall Project Management

In contrast to Agile’s flexibility, Waterfall project management might seem like a “use it or lose it” method fitting projects with minimum risk of sudden shifts. However, the agile methodology has its drawbacks, too. What approach is better for what?

What Are the Pros of Agile Methodology?

  • Early issue identification
  • Regular feedback intervals
  • Flexible task prioritization
  • Focus on customer satisfaction

What Are the Drawbacks of the Agile Approach?

  • The critical path and task dependencies may be not clear enough
  • Changing project requirements may impact team organization
  • The iterative nature may result in money and time waste

What Are the Benefits of Waterfall Project Management?

  • Precise roadmap
  • Accurate estimation of project scope and cost
  • Well-defined final product
  • Clear roles and responsibilities

What Are Waterfall’s Cons?

  • Changing the original plan may be difficult
  • Testing is the final stage that may take much time
  • Addressing the changing customer needs may be impossible

The above analysis shows that the Agile method can benefit projects with rapidly changing critical paths, while Waterfall fits projects with steady customer requirements. Some project managers combine Agile and Waterfall frameworks for flexible and, at the same time, determined project direction.

Anyways, Agile project management software is our main character here, so let’s shed more light on its advantages.

What Are the Benefits of Agile Project Management Software?

What makes Agile project management tools different? These are the features that enable effective management of multiple projects at the same time, fast feedback cycles, and smooth team communication. Now, let’s check their benefits over regular project management tools.

Straightforward project planning

Agile method is prone to unexpected twists that can turn the project plan upside down. To let you keep everything under control, project management software simplifies setting task dependencies. Plus, you can track workflow using real-time reporting and dashboards.

Better productivity

Agile project management software is a central hub of all project-related information necessary to keep everyone updated. Teams can track progress, communicate, and solve issues together. This feature removes misunderstandings and boosts productivity.

Easier feedback tracking

Since agile methodology focuses on customer satisfaction, agile teams need tools to gather and track user feedback. Many product management solutions integrate with such tools, so you get quick access to customer feedback.

Streamlined team collaboration

Project management software delivers features like task assigning, commenting, messaging, and tagging. This allows teams to collaborate on issues and improve project quality.

Better project visibility

Kanban boards and dashboards are common instruments of project management software. Use them to visualize current projects and sprints and make on-the-go decisions. Besides, you can mix Agile frameworks like Scrum and Kanban and adjust them to your workflow.

8 Common Setbacks to Adopting Agile Project Development

In spite of multiple benefits, adopting Agile project management may bring difficulties due to the following setbacks:

  • Resistance to change across the company
  • Poor leadership involvement
  • Inconsistency of processes
  • Tendency to disorganization
  • Lack of Agile skills
  • Insufficient training
  • Attachment to traditional project techniques
  • Disorderly data and metrics

Often, the challenges of adopting Agile methodology are not Agile-related but caused by poor change management. To ensure a smooth transition, involve consistent instructions and the best techniques of change management.

Who Uses Agile Project Management Software?

The agile method is deemed the number one choice of project management teams with accelerated workflows. These are not necessarily development or operations teams. Agile approach may be helpful for any team depending on what it works on. For example, teams who deal with product improvement or projects without a clear scope can find this method effective.

So, what can teams use Agile project management for?

Bug tracking

With project management software, you can detect and report bugs, so everyone knows about current issues. Some tools allow you to prioritize bugs with colored labels to show what bugs are critical.

Sprint planning

Agile sprints include several stages like backlog, in progress, and deployment. You can use project management tools to collect all tasks in backlog and arrange them according to your milestones.

Product launches

An on-time product launch is one of the Agile manifesto’s principles. To enable frequent project delivery, project management software offers detailed project planning and scheduling.

What Are the Key Features of Agile Project Management Software?

Agile project management software brings features to help teams implement the best Agile practices including:

Sprint management

With project management tools, you can assign tasks to team members, set due dates, and organize workload according to your project plan. Some solutions include a drag-and-drop option to move tasks between the columns.

Kanban boards & Gantt charts

Agile teams can use these tools to visualize their workflows and set task dependencies. Kanban boards are similar to to-do lists, while Gantt charts are horizontal bars displaying task progress.

Dashboards

Since Agile teams deal with abrupt changes, access to relevant data is essential. With real-time data dashboards, project teams can get a snapshot of what’s going on.

Third-party integrations

To make your agile project management comprehensive, you might need additional tools for communication, sales, or reporting. Some software offers such tools as built-in or provides APIs to create your own integrations.

Mobile apps

Those apps are necessary for remote teams to manage their work from any place and at any time.

How to Choose Agile Project Management Software?

Project management systems vary: some are Agile-oriented, while some are more general with several agile tools. To choose the right one, you need to rest on the following criteria:

Framework requirements

Decide which Agile methods suit you better and look for the corresponding features in project management software. Consider team collaboration tools, time tracking, and resource management.

Long-term objectives

Software deployment requires investing resources. To avoid waste, make sure the tool goes in line with your long-term goals and can scale your business as it grows.

Budget

Align your software choices with your budget capabilities. If you look for premium features, estimate how much you can spend per month. You can also take advantage of the free versions and free trials.

Tech ecosystem

Project management software may not include some tools like sales management, so you’ll need to integrate it with other apps. Make sure your option can do that.

What Are the Best Agile Project Management Tools?

What software is used in Agile project management? Depending on your industry and business, your requirements may be different. So let’s check the best project management software and tools with the most comprehensive features.

Jira Software

Jira Software belongs to the favorite software of Agile teams. With a drag-and-drop interface, you can quickly assign tasks and respond to changes. For Scrum sprint planning, Jira provides version management and story points. Also, you can access progress reports directly from the dashboard. For the Kanban framework, Jira offers swimlanes, built-in Kaban boards, and WIP limits.

Jira Agile Software

Source: Jira Software

What Are the Jira Software Pros?

  • Robust bug tracking tool
  • Agile- and Scrum-orientation
  • Multiple integrations and plug-ins
  • Enhanced visualization via graphs and charts

What Are the Jira Software Cons?

  • Challenging set-up
  • The interface may be complicated for non-developers
  • No communication tools

Jira Software Pricing

Jira offers a functional free plan with up to 10 seats and a 7-day free trial. The paid plans start at $7.50/user. You can benefit from bulk discounts, if you’re a large company or an enterprise.

Jira Pricing

Source: Jira Software

ClickUp

ClickUp comes as an all-in-one solution that can benefit any agile team. With workflow automation, you can streamline processes and plan sprints faster. To simplify bug tracking, Click Up allows you to capture bugs and turn them into tasks. Also, you get 360-degree visibility with its customizable dashboards and widgets for sprints, burndown, cycle time, and more.

ClickUp Agile Project Management

Source: ClickUp

ClickUp Pros to Check

  • Friendly layout
  • Powerful dashboard view
  • Full-featured free version
  • Customizable project templates

ClickUp Cons Enlisted

  • The number of features may be overwhelming for some users
  • Too many options for customization
  • The UI gets cluttered easily

ClickUp Pricing Overview

ClickUp offers highly compatible pricing that starts at $5/user/month. There are several paid plans, so you can choose one that fits your budget. Also, you can use the Free Forever plan to explore the tool.

ClickUp Pricing

Source: ClickUp

Monday.com

With Monday.com work management, agile teams can streamline sprint planning, bug tracking, real-time reporting, and track progress with Gantt charts. The rich toolset makes it suitable for Scrum, Kanban, or hybrid methods. Another benefit of this project management system is its high adaptability. You can customize boards with columns, groups, and views, and change the coloring.

Monday Agile Software

Source: Monday

What Are the Monday Pros?

  • Accessible interface
  • Strong progress tracking
  • Centralized communication
  • Alternative project views

Monday Cons to Be Aware of

  • Some users find the interface disorganized
  • Poor integration possibilities
  • Limited mobile app

Monday Pricing Tag

Monday offers 4 pricing packages for businesses of all sizes and starts at $8/user/month. To try out the tool, you can use the 14-day free trial sign up for the free plan with up to 2 users.

Monday Price

Source: Monday

Wrike

Besides common project management features like time tracking, task automation, and reporting, Wrike brings built-in Kanban boards and Gantt charts. Plus, it offers customizable templates like Agile Teamwork, Kanban Project, and Sprint Planning. Therefore, you can centralize and manage multiple projects and boost your team’s efficiency.

Wrike Agile

Source: Wrike

What Are the Wrike Strengths?

  • Easy setup
  • Custom request forms
  • Built-in time tracking
  • Excellent customer support

What Are the Wrike Drawbacks?

  • Steep learning curve for beginners
  • Poor task prioritization
  • Limited mobile functionality

Wrike Pricing to Check

Wrike offers several pricing tiers including a free plan with up to 5 users. The price start at $9.80 while most popular Business plan costs $24.80/user/month.

Wrike Price

Source: Wrike

Smartsheet

Whatever industry you deal with, Smartsheet can help you handle projects and adapt to changing environments. Build and track your critical path with Gantt charts and manage product releases with the Product Development dashboard. Also, you can automate routine tasks and structurize work with Kanban boards.

Smartsheet Agile

Source: Smartsheet

Benefits of Smartsheet

  • Drag-and-drop cards
  • Effective resource management
  • Automatic update requests
  • Project linking

Drawbacks of Smartsheet to Know About

  • No time tracking
  • Onboarding may be challenging
  • Dashboards could be more customizable

Smartsheet Pricing Overview

You can choose between three Smartsheet pricing tiers starting at $7/user/month. The vendor recommends the Business package for $25/user/month as the universal one. Also, you can use the 30-day free trial to check whether Smartsheet meets your requirements.

Smartsheet Price

Source: Smartsheet

Basecamp

Basecamp is a project management and team collaboration tool commonly preferred by Scrum teams. It enhances teamwork with simplified file sharing, real-time chat, and message boards. You can set notifications, ping teammates, and share reports to keep processes transparent. With a powerful search tool, you can search for people, projects, or files whether across the whole system or in a specific section.

Basecamp Agile

Source: Basecamp

What Are the Strong Sides of Basecamp?

  • Quick onboarding
  • Built-in communication tools
  • Client-specific project management
  • Multiple integrations and add-ons

What Are the Weak Sides of Basecamp?

  • Lack of advanced tools
  • No time tracking
  • Limited customization

Basecamp Pricing Check Up

Basecamp pricing is quite straightforward since it comes with two packages. The Personal plan is free but a bit limited, while the paid Business plan costs $99/month flat. To check the paid features for free, use the 30-day free trial.

Basecamp Price

Source: Basecamp

Teamwork

Teamwork offers essential project and task management features like creating projects, delegating tasks, and sharing files. In addition, you get a couple of features to handle agile projects including board views, automations, and time tracking. To cope with large work volumes, you can break tasks into subtasks and set task dependencies. With customizable dashboards, you can build custom views and tailor Teamwork to your agile method.

Teamwork Agile

Source: Teamwork

Check the Pros of Teamwork

  • Intuitive design
  • Task bulk editing
  • Built-in Teamwork apps
  • Billing and invoicing included

What Are the Cons of Teamwork

  • Some processes require additional training
  • Limited report customization
  • Some users complain about bugs

Teamwork Pricing Overview

Teamwork offers a Free Forever plan and 3 paid packages starting at $12.50/user/month. The free plan allows 5 users and 2 projects at a time. Whatever plan you choose, you automatically get a 30-day free trial of Grow plan.

Teamwork Software Price

Source: Teamwork

GitHub

GitHub is an open-source project management platform offering agile mature software developers agile tools. The top features include backlog management, sprint planning, collaborative coding, and workflow automation. Also, the open-source nature of this software allows developers to enhance security with code scanning, custom queries, and automated monitoring.

GitHub Agile

Source: GitHub

What Are the GitHub Pros?

  • Powerful versioning
  • Comprehensive documentation
  • Markdown to write formatted documents
  • Multiple integration options

Has GitHub Any Cons?

    • Steep learning curve for beginners

 

    • Some users complain about challenging file deletion

 

    Conflict management could be improved

GitHub Pricing Details

GitHub offers 3 pricing plans – Free, Team, and Enterprise. The free plan allows unlimited users but suits only basic project management. The price of the most popular Team plan starts at $4/user/month.

GitHub Price

Source: GitHub

GitLab

Whether you’re Agile, Lean, Scrum, or Kanban team, GitLab can help you manage projects and cope with complex workflows. Assign tasks, discuss ideas, collaborate on code, and visualize progress with boards and roadmaps. To arrange and plan work, use epics, milestones, and iterations.

GitLab Agile Planning

Source: GitLab

GitLab Pros Check

  • Easy setup
  • Ability to build a project wiki
  • Unlimited free private repositories
  • Integration with multiple APIs and third-party services

GitLab Cons to Know About

  • UI may be confusing for first-time users
  • Merge request management could be improved
  • No integrated deployment server

What Is GitLab Pricing?

The GitLab price starts at $19/user/month, and it can be quite costly for teams on tight budgets. Still, you can use a free plan with 5GB of storage and 5 users per namespace. There’s also an Ultimate plan with premium features for large companies.

GitLab Price

Source: GitLab

Zoho Projects

Zoho Projects allows agile teams to create project baselines, handle recurring tasks, and record issues and bugs. The portfolio dashboards, task views, and Gantt charts provide detailed reports on your progress. Plus, you can use Zoho Sprints integration to manage hybrid projects, log time, and plan sprints.

Zoho Projects Agile

Source: Zoho Projects

What Are the Zoho Project Benefits?

  • Multiple team collaboration channels
  • All-in-one business suite
  • Robust in-app tracking tools
  • Easy navigation
  • Affordable pricing

Has Zoho Projects Any Drawbacks?

  • No ready-made templates
  • English is the only language supported

Zoho Projects Pricing Overview

Zoho Projects offers three pricing plans including a free plan. You can choose to pay monthly or save 20% on getting the yearly subscription. The Premium plan costs $5/user/month, while the Enterprise plan is twice more expensive. You can use a 10-day free trial to test the paid packages.

Zoho Projects Agile

Source: Zoho Projects

Trello

Trello is a web-based project management system based on the Kanban framework but still successfully used by Scrum teams. You can use it to visualize work with boards and lists, manage sprint backlog, and prioritize tasks with labels. If built-in features aren’t enough, you can extend the functionality with Trello Power-Ups.

Trello Agile Board

Source: Trello

What Are the Strong Sides of Trello?

  • Straightforward design
  • Real-time updates are displayed on cards
  • Unlimited automation rules
  • Powerful notifications
  • High-level security

What Are the Trello’s Weak Spots?

  • No Gantt chart
  • Comments can’t be edited
  • Task can belong to one board or project

What Is in the Trello Pricing?

Trello offers a free plan with unlimited users and cards and basic features. The paid plans start at $5/user/month and deliver sustainable value for all-sized teams. Plus, you can try the Premium plan for free for 14 days.

Trello Price

Source: Trello

Asana

Asana is a powerful project management system frequently used by Kanban teams. It delivers Kanban board view and a range of other project views like Timeline and Calendar. You can use Asana to track bugs, plan sprints, gather stakeholder feedback, and launch products. Also, you can set triggers to automate tedious tasks.

Asana Agile Project Management Software

Source: Asana

Asana Pros to Know About

  • Powerful Kanban features
  • Advanced search capabilities
  • Custom fields allow tracking of necessary data
  • Work request management
  • Over 1000 integrations

Mention Some Cons of Asana

  • May be confusing for non-technical users
  • Task can be assigned only to one person
  • No built-in time tracking

Asana Pricing Tiers Check

Asana offers 3 paid plans starting at $10.99/user/month and an unlimited free plan. There’s also a 30-day free trial available.

Asana Price

Source: Asana

How to Migrate to Agile Project Management Software?

To start using your agile software, you first need to import data to the system. How can you handle it? You can manually prepare and import the CSV file or use the built-in import tools offered by software vendors. Or you can transfer your project management records automatedly and securely – run a Free Demo to see how our Migration Wizard works.

Frequently Asked Questions

Popular agile tools include Jira Software, Wrike, Monday.com, ClickUp to enlist a few.

The top books on Agile methodology include:

  1. “The Art of Agile Development 1st Edition” by James Shore and Shane Warden
  2. “Essential Scrum: A Practical Guide to the Most Popular Agile Process” by Kenneth S. Rubin
  3. “Agile Estimating and Planning” by Mike Cohn
  4. “Scrum: The Art of Doing Twice the Work in Half the Time” by J. Sutherland
  5. “The Deadline: A Novel about Project Management” by Tom DeMarco Paperback

Agile approach reduces the risk of project failure and helps handle large-scale projects.

Scrum, Kanban, and Extreme Programming (XP) are most common Agile methods for product development.

Agile project management has the following phases:

  • Envision
  • Speculate
  • Explore
  • Adapt
  • Close

Agile project management has the following four principles:

  • Individuals and Interactions Over Processes and Tools
  • Working Software Over Comprehensive Documentation
  • Customer Collaboration Over Contract Negotiation
  • Responding to Change Over Following a Plan

A team can apply Agile practices without using Scrum, while Scrum teams cannot dispense with Agile techniques. This is because Scrum is a sub-framework of Agile methodology.

There are 5 main Agile methodologies: Scrum, Kanban, Extreme Programming (XP), Lean Software Development, and Crystal Agile Framework.

Jira Software is most commonly used by Scrum Masters since this software has multiple features and is easy to adopt or implement.

Among useful sprint planning tools, you should turn attention to Jira Software, Asana, ClickUp, Wrike, Monday.com.

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