Discover today’s free project management tools for nonprofits with ABCD (A Better Community Database).
ABCD’s List of 9 Free Project Management Tools for Nonprofits
Project management tools for nonprofits help to streamline workflows, improve communication, and manage day-to-day tasks and assignments. Solutions are available for any size NPO and any budget, ranging from free platforms to subscription services.
While these tools are widely known among for-profit businesses, in the nonprofit sector they sometimes go overlooked. After all, NPOs have to wear a lot of hats. From program evaluation and case management, to outcome tracking, fundraising and more, NPOs are busy.
At ABCD, we understand this. And along with our mission to improve nonprofit data management, we aim to ensure NPOs are up-to-date on all the tools available to help them succeed. That’s why we offer our own database management system without any licensing fees. EVER.
Join us in this quick list of 9 free project management tools for nonprofits. Find out if there are any tools your NPO might be overlooking.
First on the list, there is Trello. This is a list-making app for project management. Trello is suitable for nonprofits both small and large, or even single-person operations. It enables projects to function with clear organization and workflow, and is one of the top free options in list-making apps.
Trello is a collaboration tool which organizes projects into boards. Trello boards show what’s being worked on, who’s working on what, and when something is in progress. Think of a white board covered with sticky notes, and each note as a task within the project.
Each task is a “card” on the Trello board. Teams can drag, drop, and re-order cards. You can show progression status, add people to cards, label tasks, vote, share files, and more. Real-time updates enable teams to follow progress on task checklists, and thus streamline communications.
With Trello, there are no limits to the number of users you can add to a team, and it’s completely free to use. This ranks Trello among the best free project management tools for nonprofits of all sizes, and in particular for NPOs looking for a budget-friendly list-making app.
Next, there is Asana. This web and mobile app for project management aims to help teams manage work, projects, and tasks online. Similar to Trello, Asana’s standard features include tools for project workflows, task assignment, team creation, deadlines, and comments.
Asana utilizes boards and at-a-glance status tracking. This enables teams to know the status of projects without having to send emails back and forth. Advanced features include functions to upload documents, and integration with multiple platforms. It’s also possible to add guests to individual projects and teams, allowing for collaboration outside of your network.
With up to 15 users on the free plan, Asana makes for a strong project management tool for small nonprofits. Access premium plans for more advanced features, or for adding additional users at a monthly subscription rate.
3. Google Workspace (formerly G Suite)
Often the backbone of many small and growing nonprofits, Google Workspace provides simple but powerful tools for all of your day-to-day communications. Create custom email addresses for team members. Schedule meetings, events, and due dates with Google Calendar, or safely store and share files with Google Drive.
Drive allows you to create and organize all the files your teams use, from documents to spreadsheets, and presentations. Collaborate and create in real-time, and set up permission levels at the individual level so that only authorized parties have access to your files. You can also choose to download files to share with external sources.
Another popular Workspace feature is Google Meet, which enables teams to easily and securely host video conferences. Simply create a meeting link and share directly or on Calendar for guests to access the meeting room.
Another great free option in project management tools for nonprofits is Slack. This platform enables teams to organize communications into channels. Open channels for various distributed teams and projects, or create private channels to share sensitive information.
Slack provides direct and group messaging, file sharing, voice and video calls, and more. It also supports integrations with various apps like Google Drive, Asana, Twitter, and Dropbox.
The free version of Slack makes for a great communication tool for small and growing nonprofits, and for any distributed teams in general. If you want more features, there are standard, plus, and enterprise level plans for additional storage, security, DLP tools, and more.
Another versatile project management tool for nonprofits is Freedcamp. This is a web, mobile, and desktop project management and collaboration system for teams. It allows for unlimited users and projects, and comes with 200MB of storage.
Deploy this platform for small projects or for managing extensive nonprofit goals and programs. Customize how you track progress, and make lists and calendars to streamline processes and workflows. Use Freedcamp’s unique time-tracking feature to record and report on the time that goes into tasks, and then use the invoicing app to bill tasks accordingly.
Upgrade to a paid version for more comprehensive functions. The paid options enable you to choose specific features to upgrade (more storage, CRM, invoicing, and more). There is no product bundling, meaning that upgrading gets you exactly what you need and nothing more.
Next on the list of free project management tools for nonprofits, there is MeisterTask. What makes MeisterTask stand out the most to us is the wide range of functions available with their free accounts.
MeisterTask has customizable dashboards, and free apps for mobile and PC devices. Integrate the platform with MindMeister, and plan projects with others visually and in real-time. Collaborate with teams and brainstorm on projects, all remotely and with drag and drop task cards to visualize your project.
The basic plan includes two integrations, dash and project boards, checklists, comments, and attachments. Upgrade to the pro plan at per-user monthly fees, or to a business plan for more robust features. Paid plans include limitless integrations, workflow automations, stats, reports, and more.
Bitrix24 is another successful project management solution, only with a twist. This free collaboration platform aims to provide project management in a visual format similar to social media networks.
Bitrix24 boasts intuitive communication features just as you expect to see on social media. It has an update feed, reactions, and commenting for collecting input on tasks and projects.
Other features include traditional workflows (for general requests, time-off applications, business trips, expenses, etc), email integration, staff workload management, and more. Upgrade to a premium plan for additional features including reporting tools, analytics, and record conversions for your CRM.
Looking for a project management tool that differs from the rest? ClickUp might be the solution for your agency. Multiple viewing options cater to different types of users, with clean interfaces and a multi-task toolbar for making changes across various projects at once.
ClickUp provides features for any level of user, from project managers to web designers and developers. Use ClickUp to meet communication needs, organize projects, or to track time and create schedules. This program has wide capabilities, and a long list of possible and significant integrations.
Free for as many users as you want to add, the basic plan comes with 100MB of storage. For more storage, premium plans are available at monthly per-user fees.
Another option to consider in project management tools for nonprofits is Basecamp. As with other platforms, Basecamp provides a system for team collaboration made up of checklists.
Standard user functions include creating, modifying, and assigning tasks. Users can add notes to projects, and communicate progress by completing tasks on their to-do list. Basecamp provides message boards, direct messaging, and a group chat feature “Campfire”.
Basecamp allows for file storage, scheduling, notifications, and report options. It also comes with an interface you can customize from user to user. Try it out for free over a trial period, or get Basecamp for your team at a reasonable monthly fee for unlimited users.
To find more free solutions for nonprofits
If you’d like to learn more about free project management tools for nonprofits, free resources, and more, contact ABCD today. ABCD is a Canadian based nonprofit data solution for case management, program management, and outcome tracking.
Discover if our solution would be right for your organization, or simply reach out to discuss free project management tools for nonprofits.