Whether you are tackling personal tasks or coordinating a team effort, choosing a good-fit task tracker platform can make your work life easier, from organizing your everyday to-do list to handling complex projects.
Amidst the millions of platforms labeled "sponsored" that you can find on Google, it's hard not to be overwhelmed and indecisive.
We've tested many task tracker tools and put them together in the updated list of the top 10 tools to help you choose the perfect fit for your needs.
But before we dive into the nitty-gritty, let's take a step back and understand what task tracker tools are and why they play as a digital assistant for individuals and teams to get work done.
What is a Task Tracker?
"On average, 50.2% of managers' task time is spent on productive, focused work."
The Task Management Trends Report shows the common challenges for managers in prioritizing and defending their time for focused work due to various factors, such as meetings, interruptions, and administrative tasks. To organize the vast workloads that managers face daily, they need a task management tool to keep track of to-dos and not let things slip through the cracks.
A task tracker is a smart to-do list to manage tasks and responsibilities. It empowers you to stay on top of your work, set task deadlines, receive timely reminders, and easily track their completion. Then, you are released from the constraints of a limited memory capacity and the chaos of scattered notes.
The best part is that task trackers are not only for personal work management. It works well for teams with many available collaboration features today, from basic to advanced.
As a manager, you can use the task tracker as a centralized hub where everyone can see what needs to be done and who is responsible for each task. Having all tasks and their statuses in one place gives you a hundred percent control of every action item. This makes it easier to identify any bottlenecks, redistribute workloads if needed, and ensure your projects stay on schedule.
Benefits of a task tracker
If you manage hybrid or remote teams, you probably understand the difficulty of keeping everyone on the same page when they are working from different locations and time zones. Using a task tracker can be transformative, offering numerous benefits that enhance your ability to track and manage your team's progress effectively. Some key advantages of using a task tracker include:
No more memory challenges
Scientific studies show that short-term memory can only hold around seven items, so it's easy to forget important tasks. With a task tracker, every action item is set and distributed into individual to-do lists with reminders, so you never have to worry about forgetting anything.
Tame the chaos of scattered notes
Post-it notes are great for intentional planning. But to execute ideas, you need a shared system with context, deadlines, and assigned team members to turn them into action items. A task tracker ensures that every task is listed and organized, so you don't waste any good ideas.
Easily track progress
Checking off completed tasks is a great motivator for teams. A task tracker lets you easily see what's been accomplished and what still needs to be done. Who is happier than a manager seeing his or her projects many steps closer to the end goals?
Set yourselves up for productivity
People often procrastinate when they don't receive the signal "Get this done asap!" or need more explicit deadlines or at least priority levels. Externally imposed deadlines are proven to improve task performance. With a task tracker, you can set deadlines and priorities for every task with just a few clicks. They will be automatically rearranged to the date-of-finish view.
Collaboration made easy
A task tracker makes it easy to share tasks and assign them to team members. No more searching through endless messages on Slack. Your remote team members will receive a notification in their task tracker with all the details they need to start working.
Criteria to choose a task tracker tool for team collaboration
While a to-do list is great for jotting down personal tasks, more is needed for managing tasks in a team or project context. When choosing a task tracker tool for team collaboration, there are a few key criteria for you to consider as below:
First and foremost, a task tracker should be user-friendly for the daily use of you and your team. A complex interface and overwhelming features will create more friction in overseeing your tasks. You don't want to waste more time on an app instead of actually finishing work.
As you want to use a task tracker for team collaboration, flexibility will be needed regarding personal tastes, project labels, and tags. This allows team members to control task lists in their own way but still keep an eye on shared objectives.
Integration with Other Tools
Choosing the suitable tool for your team, consider its integration feature that can link with your team's current tools and platforms, such as Slack, Calendar, etc., to synchronize data and streamline communication and collaboration among team members.
Scalability and Task Complex
It's essential to measure your team's scale and the complexity of the projects before making the decision. If your team is expanding rapidly (congrats!), steer clear of any tools that may suffice for your current needs but won't be able to keep up with your growth and become cumbersome when dealing with more complex projects.
A task tracker is an efficient tool for team communication and task management. Everyone can access and update task information in real time, highlighting personal responsibilities. Often, managers may find switching to a dedicated planning tool helpful for more complex projects requiring detailed planning. Other than that, the simplicity of a task tracker makes it invaluable.
What are the different types of task trackers?
You can look at different task tracker styles to consider which works best for your work styles and preferences. Some tools offer flexibility, allowing you to switch styles based on your current needs. Here are some common approaches:
A list-based view organizes tasks in a hierarchical list format. It presents tasks in columns of task name, due dates, and person-in-charge. You can sort them based on due dates to have the order of priority and start finishing them one by one.
A Kanban board view uses columns and cards to visualize tasks. Each column represents a stage of progress, such as "To Do," "In Progress," and "Done." You can move cards across columns to reflect their current status and see what is still in the pipeline.
A calendar-based view displays tasks within a calendar interface. Many jobs extend beyond a single day. In this interface, you'll be able to see what you need to accomplish each day, as well as get a sense of how long certain tasks will take. This way, you can identify any potential issues, like overlapping deadlines or a team member who may be overloaded, and make adjustments accordingly.
Having autonomous teams, all you have to do is stay updated with progress status and support with arising blockers. This type of task tracking empowers ownership of work but still lets managers maintain visibility.
Based on the team's instinct and goal, you can choose different styles of task tracker tools to keep track of performance. Most tools now allow you to have more than one view to manage your team's workloads and progress.
The List of the Best 10 Task Tracker Tools
When you drive increased performance and employee productivity of hybrid teams, it's often a struggle to keep the team continuously updated and not let tasks jump here and there. So here is The List of the Best 10 Task Tracker Tools to guarantee your control:
If you're a manager that promotes autonomy at work, well, you seem to be the most desired type of leader in any organization. This doesn't mean that you totally hands off. Stay updated with deliverables to provide feedback and hand prompt supports when your team needs it. Geekbot is a simple and one-thing-focus Slack integration to let you do so.
Geekbot will automatically ask your team members to update their daily progress and send it to a designated channel. Therefore, as a manager, you know what assignments are delivered today and if they are moving towards shared objectives.
- Geekbot allows team members to set their weekly goals every Monday and reflect on their work throughout the week on Friday. This feature highlights the importance of priorities and focused work.
- One-step installation and work in a daily team communication channel reduce the friction of switching among applications.
- Alternative for standup meetings and asynchronous status report meetings.
Notion is an all-in-one workspace for team collaboration and management. If your team uses Notion for project planning, let's make the most out of it with a task-tracking template. Thanks to the linked database feature, every team member can create their own personalized page to centralize tasks from different projects.
Notion offers several task-tracking options. You can create simple to-do lists, Kanban boards, calendars, and project timelines. Notion users can customize their pages with maximum choices and premade templates. This flexible task-tracking tool is great for young and creative teams.
- Notion supports rich media embedding, making integrating documents, files, images, and even third-party applications into your task trackers easy.
- You can do content-related tasks directly on Notion instead of Google Docs and Sheets. Notion AI is also a plus, helping you generate drafts, brainstorm ideas, summarize existing content, and more.
- Notion is free for your personal space. However, for team collaboration plan will cost you $8/ user/ month.
If you're looking for an easy-to-use task-tracking tool, Todoist is a great option. It's popular among users and has a simple interface perfect for beginners. You can create tasks, set deadlines, and categorize them with ease. Additionally, you can label tasks with priority flags, organize them into folders, and view them on a Kanban board. Even with the free version, you can collaborate with up to 5 people per project.
- Todoist allows you to send tasks directly from email and easily capture and organize tasks without leaving your inbox. By forwarding an email to a unique Todoist email address, the content of the email becomes a task in your Todoist account.
- Todoist integrates with Power of You to create a personalized dashboard that visualizes your productivity levels, task completion rates, and other relevant data.
- There's a free account with collaborating with up to 5 people per project and managing five projects simultaneously. For teams of more than 5, try the Pro plan with an additional $4/user.
Taskade is a versatile platform that helps teams organize their work, brainstorm ideas, and stay on track. It provides multiple ways to visualize your projects. You can switch between List, Mind Map, Org Chart, and Board views, allowing teams to adapt styles to their specific needs.
Taskade is particularly well-suited for hybrid and remote managers. It offers seamless communication and task coordination among team members. You can utilize its note-taking ability and in-app video conferencing feature to collaborate in real-time even when you are not in the same location.
- Team communication features, including chat, video conference, and project comments, make collaboration easy, especially for distributed teams.
- Taskade AI uses OpenAI's GPT-4 technology to help you generate lists of tasks with Taskade AI Smart Assistant.
- It's only free for personal use without a team collaboration workspace. The Starter plan for three members costs $4 per month per user, and there are plans for larger teams up to $99 for 100 members.
Small Steps is the alternative for Taskade AI Smart Assistant that you can try now for free. This stand-alone tool allows you to unlock the power of AI to break down any projects into actionable tasks.
Asana perfectly outperforms the project management software options on the market. Have you ever considered leveraging the platform for your daily personal use? Even the free version of Asana almost offers powerful features such as separate Workspaces, Projects, calendar view, repeating due dates, color coding, tags and so on. This can help you track effectively your to-do list, plan your weekly schedule or map out your goals.
Moreover, Asana has a desktop app for both macOS and Windows that allows you to quit your web browser when you want to focus on only work in Asana.
- Pasting the bullet points from your notes into Asana is quite convenient. The system automatically arranges them into individual tasks, saving you the trouble of manually copying each one.
- Free plan for personal and small team use of up to 15 users. However, for complex projects and large teams, it might not be a good fit plan anymore as you will be limited to some administrative controls as well as a timeline view or advanced search.
If you've learned about different task management tools, you probably not unfamiliar with Trello developed by Atlassian. Trello would be the best choice for Kanban lovers by its ease of use and super simplistic interface. Besides Kanban, its workspace provides a Table, Calendar, and Timeline view that better visualizes your to-do list.
On top of that, there are many templates in place ranging from various topics, or you can become a designer of your own space by customizing which color and background you like. It also does a good job of team collaboration through flexibility and streamlining teamwork.
- That said, Trello's highly visual and customizable kanbans make it stand out among its competitors.
- The automation tool called Butfler allows users to create rules, buttons, and commands that automate almost any action in Trello.
- Trello's free plan has most core features. To access boards view with timeline, map, and dashboard, upgrade to the standard plan for $6/user/month.
Any.do is a Kanban-based task tracker with a minimal design. The mobile app experience is personalized and intuitive, while it is a bit tricky on desktop and web.
You can create projects from a blank page or the platform's free template resources, then add tasks and subtasks (using "checklist"), assignees, and deadlines. Team members can have an overall look at their tasks from every project in the "My Task - Workspace." Any.do also promotes teamwork with the chat feature on each assignment.
- Plan your working day with My Day. This feature has smart suggestions for overdue and upcoming tasks to let you plan ahead and prioritize your daily goals.
- The Any.do Moment feature on the mobile app prompts users to review daily tasks and decide whether to commit or defer them. (You might enjoy it!)
- You will unlock a 14-day free trial with all premium features, including unlimited workspace and collaborators when signing up for Any.do. After that, a Team plan costs $5 per month per user.
Microsoft Planner is a user-friendly interface and integrates seamlessly with other Microsoft tools, such as Teams and SharePoint, making it a popular choice for teams already using the Microsoft ecosystem. Microsoft Planner offers a Kanban-style task-tracking system. Tasks can be organized into different boards, lists, and buckets, allowing teams to visualize and track progress easily. You can create tasks, assign them to team members, set due dates, and add additional details or attachments.
To use the Microsoft Planner, you must subscribe to one of the 365 Business, Family, or Home plans. Its integration with other Microsoft apps and accessibility make it an ideal choice for teams using Microsoft Office.
- "My Day" Feature: The "My Day" feature in Microsoft To-Do helps you stay organized and manage your tasks effectively. You can create detailed plans for each task, and drag emails from your inbox to create tasks or calendar events.
- Planner plans can integrate with the Viva Goals feature that help align your task with broader organizational goal. Microsoft has added a new feature to reduce extra work by quickly setting up automatic repeating tasks for interval options – from daily and weekly to bi-weekly and beyond.
Google Keep is a simple and easy-to-use note-taking app created by Google. It helps you capture ideas, make to-do lists, and organize tasks and notes.
With Google Keep, you can create tasks, set due dates, add reminders, and categorize tasks with labels and colors. It presents your tasks in a straightforward and uncomplicated format, making it easy to stay organized. You can also share task lists with your team, allowing for collaboration and keeping everyone on the same page. Another great thing about Google Keep is that you can access it from various devices, such as web browsers, Android phones, and iPhones.
If you are a user of other Google services, Google Keep can be very helpful to quickly capture tasks with a sharing option. However, if you require more advanced organization features, it would be best to find an alternative.
- Note-taking and Task Management: Google Keep lets you quickly jot down notes, ideas, and to-do lists. You can create text notes, add checkboxes for tasks, and organize them using labels or colors.
- Voice Recording and Transcription: Google Keep offers the ability to record voice memos, which can be transcribed into text. This feature is convenient for capturing ideas or taking notes on the go.
As its name, Teamwork is positioned as a comprehensive project management solution that aims to simplify projects. The platform makes it suitable for teams that handle client work because it offers the features like invoicing and billing for client work, milestone and task management, time tracking, project templates, workload planning, and easy calendar management.
Teamwork has different pricing tiers to cater to different needs. The Free Forever account is available at no cost and supports up to five people and two projects. Still, it lacks certain advanced features like billing and invoicing, project templates, and app integrations.
- Teamwork includes built-in time-tracking features. You can track the time spent on tasks using an in-app timer or manually enter time entries. This helps with accurate project billing and monitoring productivity.
- The free account supports five people and two projects at a time, while the starter plan has all the basic project management you need at $5.99, which provides more templates and automation.
How To Choose A Task Tracker that Works
In general, most task tracker tools offer a free plan for individuals, but you may need to pay to access more advanced features for team use. The value of investing in a paid plan depends on your team's specific needs, budget, and preference for integrating with existing tools and platforms.
For individuals and small teams, starting with simple and affordable tools like Todoist, Any.do, Trello, or Notion can be an excellent choice for managing to-do lists and basic team collaboration.
For larger teams and more complex projects, platforms like Teamwork, Asana, or Taskade are specifically designed to cater to the needs of cross-functional collaboration at a larger scale.
A recommended approach is to utilize your team's existing system and enhance it for efficient task tracking. Notion is a potential option for teams with Business or Enterprise plans as it facilitates connection with various teams and tools. For those using Microsoft or Google Enterprise plans, Google Keep or Microsoft Planner can be utilized for seamless integration within their respective systems.
A good task tracker can greatly improve collaboration and productivity among team members. The List of the Best 10 Task Tracker Tools is here to help you make an informed decision and find the best solution for your team.