Most project managers can’t imagine running a project without Gantt charts. This tool has been in the project management toolbox for so long that it predates computers. But once it joined the digital revolution, it became that much more powerful. We’re looking at the best Gantt chart software out there so you can make an informed decision when in the market to purchase one.
We’ll survey the best free Gantt chart software and those that require a paid subscription. Before we get into our roundup of online Gantt chart software, we’ll first explain what a Gantt chart is and why Gantt chart software is so beneficial when managing a project.
What Is Gantt Chart Software?
Gantt chart software is used in the project planning phase of project management to schedule tasks and is useful throughout the life cycle of a project. It was made to automate processes of a static Gantt chart, which previously were made on paper or spreadsheets, which presented notable disadvantages.
With Gantt chart software, it’s easier to add tasks, note their duration, create milestones and link task dependencies that can otherwise cause bottlenecks and lead to costly delays. Depending on the Gantt chart software you use, it’s also possible to identify the critical path, which shows those tasks which are essential to getting the project done correctly.
Using Gantt chart software offers other advantages, but first and foremost it disproves the belief that Gantt charts are hard to use. It’s true that making a Gantt chart on paper or even on an Excel spreadsheet is difficult and editing the Gantt chart is even worse, but those hurdles have been cleared with the advent of Gantt chart software.
Benefits of Using Gantt Chart Software
If you’re not using Gantt chart software, why consider it? It’s understandable that maybe you’ve become accustomed to the many shortcomings of a spreadsheet, but it’s familiar. Gantt charts are ideal for knowing what’s going on in a project, communicating with teams and avoiding resource overload.
Of course, all that can be done faster and more accurately with Gantt chart software. With many Gantt chart software products, you can easily share project plans with the team, who can comment on tasks and manage resources and costs, which automatically update.
You can also measure progress in real time without manual updates. And with many Gantt chart software solutions, there are other project management tools that share the project plan of the data, but let team members work on the tool that’s most appropriate for them. The bottom line is that Gantt chart software is more efficient, easier to use and more powerful than its analog cousin.
Top 10 Best Gantt Chart Software
By now, you’re ready to hear about the best Gantt chart software. We’ve narrowed it down to a top 10 in order of preference, with the leader starting things off.
ProjectManager is award-winning Gantt chart software with features that expand upon that tool and offer task management, resource management and risk management. It has multiple project views that share live project data, real-time dashboards, reporting and other essential time-tracking features. It’s powerful and expansive project management software that helps project managers and their teams plan, manage and track projects in real time.
Best Gantt Chart Software
While every product here has a good Gantt chart, ProjectManager leaves the competition in the dust. First off, the Gantt chart is easy to set up. You can import any kind of spreadsheet, even Microsoft Project files (we’ll explain why you’d want to do that in the next segment). There are even industry-related templates to get you started quickly. Once you add the start dates and end dates, the project timeline automatically populates. You can then add milestones, color-code phases, add resources, costs and more.
But what makes ProjectManager’s Gantt chart software special is that it links all four types of task dependencies, which is a must to avoid costly delays. You can also filter for the critical path. That means no time–consuming calculations. It’s done in an instant. Now you can see the tasks that are critical to delivering your project. Best of all, you can set a baseline once you’ve completed the project plan. This feeds the real-time dashboard, reports and more to allow users to track their actual effort against their planned effort. That’s how you stay on schedule and keep to your budget.
Let’s take a look at the real-time dashboard. Other Gantt chart software products might have it, but they usually require time-consuming configuration or expensive plugins. ProjectManager’s dashboard is ready when you are, capturing live data and displaying it on easy-to-read graphs and charts. There are also secure timesheets that give project managers a live view of how far their team is in completing their tasks. Plus, customizable reporting tools can be filtered to show the data you want to see for project and portfolio status, workload, timesheets, variance and more. Then shared in a variety of formats with stakeholders.
ProjectManager’s Gantt chart software is great for planning and managing resources. From nonhuman costs to easy onboarding of labor, accounting for availability and more. There’s a color-coded workload chart that makes it easy to see who on the team is overallocated. You can then reallocate resources right from that page, balancing your team’s workload to keep them working at capacity and productive, but avoiding burnout.
ProjectManager tops this list because its Gantt chart software is superior to the competition. The fact that it builds on that with multiple project views, such as kanban boards, task lists and calendars, a collaborative platform and the flexibility that makes it ideal for construction, manufacturing, IT, professional service and really any industry only sweetens the deal. Get started with ProjectManager today for free.
- Team: $13/user/month
- Business: $24/user/month
- ProjectManager has a free 30-day trial
- ProjectManager has a mobile project management app available for Android and iOS
2. Microsoft Project
Microsoft Project is the gorilla in the Gantt chart software room so it deserves attention. Many larger organizations use it to manage their projects. It seems designed for complexity, which is both a plus and a minus about this Gantt chart software. However, you can’t deny Microsoft its power, with seamless integrations with Teams, Office and more. Plus, it’s got a full suite of project tools, from Gantt charts to dashboards.
It’s also built to do what’s needed in project management. That is, it’s a planning, tracking and management tool. It has an organized view of your tasks and timelines and can allocate resources and report on the project, but these features aren’t intuitively designed. You’ll need to factor in a lot of time before you can even start working on your Gantt chart to figure out how to use it properly.
Of course, lots of Gantt chart software has some learning curve to deal with, but Microsoft Project adds more roadblocks. It’s expensive. That alone is going to drive away the majority of potential customers. Then there’s the issue of compatibility. If not everyone on the team is using the same software, MS Project doesn’t make it easy to share. Add to the limits in customization and buyer beware.
- Project Plan 1: $10/user/month
- Project Plan 3: $30/user/month
- Project Plan 5: $55/user/month
- Microsoft Project has a free 1-month trial
- Microsoft Project doesn’t have a mobile app
InstaGantt bills itself as a simple online Gantt chart software. It’s an affordable option that helps you create projects, manage tasks and set task dependencies. For a little extra money, you can access more features, such as a kanban board view, workload management, dashboards and reporting. In terms of Gantt charts, which is where it puts all its attention, you can schedule milestones, build timelines and create tasks and subtasks. Asana users will like it because it integrates with this project management software.
But when you put all your eggs in one basket, you’re asking for trouble. One thing is that it’s not great for updating stakeholders and you can’t export views to a PDF. While it integrates with Asana, InstaGantt is woefully behind in integrations with the more commonly used third-party tools. Also, the fact that users need to team up with another project management software to get a full suite of features to manage their projects feels like too much effort and cost when there are software solutions that offer it all under one roof.
- Individual Plan: $7 month
- Team Plan: $5/user/month
- InstaGantt has a free 7-day trial
- InstaGantt doesn’t have a mobile app, but a mobile-optimized view
TeamGantt is intuitive Gantt chart software for beginners and those who are tasked with the management of small projects or businesses. Gantt charts can be complicated, especially for those who aren’t used to working with them. Here the interactive Gantt charts are easy to use, which is further helped by the fact that the software offers strong tutorial content. They hold your hand but still have features such as automatic dependencies, so it’s not a bare-bones tool.
But beginners quickly become more experts and expect their Gantt chart software to follow suit. Unfortunately, that’s not the case. For example, there are no budgeting or invoicing tools, which are going to send users to other software to fill the holes. While there are reporting features, they’re underwhelming. Compared to other Gantt chart software these reports are basic and not very useful. The Gantt chart is good, but the software rests its reputation on that tool. Users who want project management software will have to look elsewhere.
- Lite: $19/user/month
- Pro: $49/user/month
- Enterprise: $99/user/month
- TeamGantt has a free 30-day trial
- TeamGantt has a mobile app
GanttPRO is a simple way to plan with Gantt chart software. It enables users to work alone or create a workspace with Gantt charts that are shared with your team. It’s especially useful for small teams. It’s easy to use and well-designed, with a lot of features that teams will want. It also has kanban boards for those who don’t want to only work on Gantt charts. Add to that a competitive price and you can see why it made it to our list.
However, there’s a reason it lands in the middle of our listing. One is that there are no customizable reporting tools. You can’t even customize its dashboard. If you’re looking to do billing or invoicing, you’re out of luck. There are no such features. You might be able to live with that if you integrate with some of your favorite third-party apps, but that’s not likely. While there’s some integration, it’s very light and is one of the biggest areas that could use improvement on the tool.
- Basic: $7.99/user/month
- Pro: $12.99/user/month
- Business: $19.99/user/month
- Enterprise: Contact sales
- GanttPRO has a free 14-day free trial
- GanttPRO has a mobile app available on iOS and Android
ClickUp is Gantt chart software that helps users manage tasks, workflows, collaborate and streamlines processes with automation. There’s a great deal of customization, which is both positive and negative. It gives you more control but it’s also a bit overwhelming. If you want to take advantage of this, you’ll be spending a lot of time setting up instead of working. However, it’s a great collaboration tool. You can send emails on the app, chat and edit Google Docs together.
What’s really going to stop people from adopting this Gantt chart software is its limited time tracking. While there are some rudimentary time-tracking features, such as deadlines and time spent on tasks, it’s a far cry from other Gantt chart software. A Gantt chart needs powerful time tracking to help you keep to your project plan. Then there’s the steep learning curve. We alluded to it above, with all the customization options available, but it goes beyond that. If you don’t have the hours necessary to learn ClickUp, you might want to keep looking.
- Unlimited: $5/user/month
- Business: $9/user/month
- Business Pro: $19/user/month
- ClickUp doesn’t have a free trial
- ClickUp has a mobile project planning app available for Android and iOS
7. Zoho Projects
Zoho Projects is online Gantt chart software for project planning, tracking work and team collaboration. The fact that they offer a free edition, though with limited features and only for three users, is attractive. If you find the software working for you, then the pricing structure is reasonable. It offers the standard features one expects with Gantt chart software. It’s also pretty easy to navigate, which users who have been scratching their heads with complicated software like Microsoft Project will definitely appreciate.
But users might find this Gantt chart software a bit bland. It hits the basics but doesn’t go the extra mile to make the software more competitive. It’s not easy to find tasks and the tool’s search function could use an upgrade. Same with bug reporting. Users have complained about the dashboard functionality, but the biggest complaint is the steep learning curve. Many Gantt chart software products are hard to learn, which is a hurdle users are often not willing to clear.
- Free for up to three users
- Premium: $5/user/month
- Enterprise: $10/user/month
- Zoho Projects has a free 10-day free
- Zoho Projects has a mobile app
Wrike is Gantt chart software that’s broad enough to deliver project and product management features, proofing and publishing as well as risk management. It tends to be used by marketers, digital agencies and those working in professional services. They like its simple but effective collaborative features, such as built-in chat. It’s best for monitoring workloads and activities, plus it can track the progress of the project. Agencies like the billing and invoicing capabilities.
It’s lower on our Gantt chart software list primarily because the Gantt chart and other features aren’t intuitive. Even worse, you can’t view projects, only tasks on its kanban board. If you like lists, though, this is for you. Gantt charts, not so much. For example, you can’t track all four task dependencies on its Gantt chart. Also, if you’re managing multiple projects, you’ll not like the lack of portfolio reporting. There’s also no option to pay monthly, the cost is divided into 12 to show how much you’ll pay monthly but you have to sign up for a year.
- Professional plan: $9.80/user/month
- Business plan: $24.80/user/month
- Wrike has a 14-day free trial
- Wrike has a mobile project management app available for Android and iOS
Monday.com is Gantt chart software that bills itself as a project management, workflow and automation and collaborative tool. It’s made an aggressive push to a general market and appeals to users who like a spreadsheet view. It has integrations you can pick from or build your own. Users like its colorful interface and how the software helps to visualize work. It’s also priced for a general market with very competitive subscription tiers.
However, if you’re a business that needs project management software, Monday.com is going to fall short. Even if you’re using it for less dynamic projects, the onboarding and training are not great and support is hard to reach. In terms of Gantt chart software, its Gantt chart is especially problematic. For example, you have to manually add task dependencies. It’s really a task management, not a project management tool.
- Basic: $8/user/month
- Standard: $10/user/month
- Pro: $16/user/month
- Monday.com has a free 14-day trial
- Monday has a mobile project management app available for Android and iOS
Smartsheet is collaborative software that has some Gantt chart software features but is mostly a super-powered spreadsheet. It emphasizes the sharing of data with teams. It has a lot of templates and forms to help you get started as well as training tools. There are workflow automation tools that create efficiencies. There’s also a high level of customization, which many users will appreciate. If you want a Gantt chart, you’re going to have to create one yourself and it’s not going to satisfy users looking for Gantt chart software.
That should be a clue that this isn’t project management software and is barely a Gantt chart software. But it’s popular, which is why it’s included, if at the bottom of our rankings. There’s a lack of portfolio management features, resource management and capacity planning are expensive add-ons only available for top-tier subscriptions. The dashboard is cumbersome and, if you’re an enterprise customer, you’ll find the tool lacking. It’s not bad as a supplement to other tools, but why pay all that money for only a partial solution?
- Pro plan: $7/user/month
- Business plan: $25/user/month, 3-user limit, making it $75/month
- Smartsheet has a 30-day free trial
- Smartsheet has a mobile project management app available for Android and iOS
Related Gantt Chart Content
If you’re still on the fence, we have a ton of free content on our site that can help you understand how Gantt charts work and why they’re such an important part of project management. Here are some articles to help you make a decision about which Gantt chart software is right for you.
You’ve Seen the List of Gantt Chart Software. Which Is the Best of the Best?
It’s important to pick the Gantt chart software that fits your needs. You’ll want one that’s easy to use and doesn’t require a complicated and time-consuming setup. It should easily link all four types of task dependencies, filter for the critical path and set a baseline to help you track project variance.
Then that Gantt chart should seamlessly connect with other project views and tools, such as dashboards and reporting. It should be cloud-based to allow teams to collaborate and give you real-time data to make more informed decisions. Look for that Gantt chart software that does all that and you’ll never look for another Gantt chart software again.
ProjectManager is award-winning Gantt chart software that links all four dependencies, filters for the critical path and sets a baseline to track progress in real time. Our Gantt chart is one of the multiple project views that all update together to keep you on the same page. There are also built-in task management, risk management and resource management features. Join teams at Avis, Nestle and Siemens who use our software to deliver success. Get started with ProjectManager today for free.