Find the best Project Planning Software

What is project planning software?

Project planning software helps managers and stakeholders map out and visualize a project's critical path, or the sequence of activities and tasks required to complete a project, the duration of those tasks and the way they relate to one another.
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FrontRunners 2022

Float is a collaborative resource management software for real-time project planning and task scheduling. Features include an intuitive interface, drag-and-drop features, keyboard shortcuts, reports, and analytics, and editing too...Read more about Float


Confluence is a project management solution that enables organizations to create, collaborate, organize and review project documents. The system offers both cloud-based and on-premise deployment. Confluence’s editor feature a...Read more about Confluence is an award-winning work and project management platform that helps teams of all sizes plan, prioritize, manage, and execute their work more effectively. The platform offers solutions for a wide range of use-cases such...Read more about

4.57 (3108 reviews)

23 recommendations


Backlog is a cloud-based project management and issue tracking solution that caters to development teams working with design, marketing and IT teams. The key features of the solution include project and issue management, subtaskin...Read more about Backlog

4.51 (79 reviews)


ClickUp is a cloud-based collaboration and project management tool suitable for businesses of all sizes and industries. Features include communication and collaboration tools, task assignments and statuses, alerts and a task toolb...Read more about ClickUp


Wrike is a cloud-based project management platform for teams of 20+ that is suitable for both large enterprises and SMBs. It supports remote work for various teams. This solution comes with Gantt charts, calendars, workload view f...Read more about Wrike


Asana helps teams orchestrate their work at scale—from daily tasks to strategic initiatives. With Asana, teams are more confident, move faster, and accomplish more with less—no matter where they are located or how many different d...Read more about Asana is Australian-owned and -developed software that combines task and project management with time tracking and billing to provide an all-in-one productivity tool for freelancers, consultants and teams. Managing any number o...Read more about

4.41 (46 reviews)

Planview AdaptiveWork

Planview Clarizen is an award-winning enterprise work management solution for project portfolio management (PPM) and professional services delivery teams. The solution enables PMOs, EPMOs, PSOs, and ESOs to gain real-time visibil...Read more about Planview AdaptiveWork

4.24 (171 reviews)

4 recommendations

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FrontRunners 2022

Workzone is a project management solution that offers document management, project collaboration, customizable reporting, resource and task management and time tracking. The software is cloud-based and offers automated emailed rep...Read more about Workzone

4.74 (181 reviews)

25 recommendations

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Smartsheet is a work execution platform and collaboration tool with a familiar spreadsheet-like interface that helps teams plan, track, and manage projects in real-time. Smartsheet features include a range of project management to...Read more about Smartsheet

4.48 (2541 reviews)

14 recommendations

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InLoox is an on-premise and cloud-based project management and collaboration solution used by small and midsize businesses and global enterprises. Capabilities include task management, document management, time tracking and budget...Read more about INLOOXPM

4.79 (17 reviews)


Celoxis offers a comprehensive online project management solution for midsize to large businesses to help them plan and manage complex and diverse project portfolios. The collective suite includes modules for resource management, ...Read more about Celoxis

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FrontRunners 2022

ProofHub is a cloud-based solution for teams in numerous industries. The solution provides applications for project management, project collaboration, resource management, task management, plus more. Key features include discussi...Read more about ProofHub

4.53 (70 reviews)

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ProjectManager is an innovative project management software solution designed to help you navigate your project with ease. Say goodbye to roadblocks with features like: project planning, budgeting, time tracking, task and documen...Read more about

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KeyedIn Enterprise is a dynamic PPM software for growing and scaling, results-driven PMOs. KeyedIn Enterprise transforms the way a PMO delivers insight led-decision making across value based outcomes. With strong user adoption, ex...Read more about KeyedIn

4.32 (44 reviews)

6 recommendations

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FrontRunners 2022

RoboHead manages projects from start to finish with customizable project request forms, time tracking, resource management, online proofing/editing and approvals, client surveys, creative portfolios, asset management, and robust r...Read more about RoboHead

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Resource Guru

FrontRunners 2022

Resource Guru is a resource scheduling tool that helps busy teams keep projects on track. It offers a fast, flexible way to schedule people and assign work for any type of project, at companies big and small. Project managers and...Read more about Resource Guru

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FrontRunners 2022

Founded in 2002 and acquired by ProActive Software Ltd in 2003, ProWorkflow is a cloud-based project management and time tracking software that caters to companies of all sizes. ProWorkflow includes all the features of a trad...Read more about ProWorkflow

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Teamwork is the only project management platform built specifically for client work. Deliver work on time and on budget, eliminate client chaos, and understand profitability in one platform. Teamwork's customers track and manage t...Read more about Teamwork

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Buyers Guide

Last Updated: November 22, 2022

Whether or not a project is successful largely depends on how well the project is planned. In fact, in a recent analysis of project management (PM) software buyers who contacted Software Advice in the past year, 66% requested systems with project scheduling and resource management capabilities.*

We've created this guide to help buyers better understand project planning solutions and how they factor into the larger PM software market.

Here’s what we’ll cover:

What is project planning software?

Project planning software is a specialized tool that helps project managers and stakeholders map out and visualize a project plan, helping to optimize resource allocation across a complex project and/or multiple projects. The project planning management tool helps plan the sequence of activities and tasks required to complete a project and identify the best project team based on availability and skills set.

This high-level "roadmapping" process helps managers:

  • Identify key resources
  • Pinpoint project tasks’ dependencies and constraints
  • Determine essential project milestones
  • Set baselines for the project’s scope, budget, and timeline (the three benchmarks used to determine project success)

Businesses can purchase stand-alone project planning/project scheduling software or invest in an integrated PM suite. A comprehensive project management software solution typically contains project planning capabilities in addition to other core PM functionality, such as:

Among the best project planning tools are Gantt charts, which are used to visualize a project's schedule and determine the critical path. These digital charts are vastly less labor-intensive to update than Gantt charts created using manual methods.

Now let's get into more detail on planning tool features.


Common features of project planning software

The following are some common capabilities of project planning tools:

Gantt charts Used to determine the critical path of tasks, identify task dependencies, and potential risk areas. They can also help track performance and progress on tasks once projects are underway. Represented as cascading bar charts across a timeline or calendar (see screenshot below table for an example).
Resource scheduling Provides project managers increased visibility into team availability and skill set. Managers can schedule resources to tasks and projects or create a “placeholder resource” for roles they know they’ll need but haven’t been able to schedule yet.
Project timeline planning Visualize the full project timeline based on task durations and dependencies.  Project managers can create a project schedule, manage employee scheduling, and track project status (see screenshot below table for an example).
Risk identification Allows project managers to track and manage potential risk areas, such as dependent tasks (e.g., if task B can only start once task A is complete, these tasks would be flagged).
Automatic alerts Provides PMs and their team the ability to schedule in-app or email alerts. These can be used to notify the team about upcoming task due dates or to alert an employee assigned to a dependent task that the preceding work item is nearing completion.
Collaboration tools Helps facilitate team collaboration among users via in-app comments, in-task chat streams, or discussion forums. For example, users can comment and add status updates directly to tasks or flagged risk items or loop in a team member on a question posted to a project discussion board (see screenshot below table for an example).
Zoho Projects software Gantt chart
Gantt chart in Zoho Projects (Source)
Project time planning in Microsoft Project
Project timeline planning in Microsoft Project (Source)
Basecamp project team collaboration
Project collaboration in Basecamp (Source)

Benefits of project planning software

There are many benefits of using project planning software as opposed to manual methods. These benefits include:

  • Increased visibility: View, track, and manage individual and team workloads, their skill sets, and current and future availability. This benefit is best realized when using a comprehensive PM suite with both project planning and resource management capabilities.
  • Improved communication and collaboration: Project planning tools act as a shared hub where managers, team members, and stakeholders can store all project-related communication. This provides a permanent record for important decisions and project changes.
  • Early risk detection: Using visual planning tools, such as Gantt charts and timelines, project managers and stakeholders can plan risk management strategies ahead of time and mitigate any potential obstacles.
  • Maintain historical archives: The information in project plans and status reports can influence future business decisions. Managers and stakeholders using planning software can look back on previous projects to see why decisions were made and to compare timeline and budgetary measures.

*Analysis was performed on software buyer calls asking about project management software from March 10, 2020 through March 9, 2021.

Note: The applications selected in this article are examples to show a feature in context and are not intended as endorsements or recommendations. They have been obtained from sources believed to be reliable at the time of publication.