4 top open source project management software solutions

Project management software is essential for organizing, tracking, and assessing projects. Project managers who want even more control over their processes can benefit from using an open source project management tool.

Open source project management software differs from ordinary organizational tools because it allows for constant enhancement. You can make changes to the software to adjust how things are tracked and organized. This personalized touch can help you get work done more quickly and efficiently while creating a long-term plan for the future.

OpenProject

OpenProject is an open source project management tool that helps you manage your projects from conception to completion. It emphasizes each stage of the journey to ensure that you don’t miss any important steps. For example, at the beginning of a project, OpenProject makes it easy to collect ideas, specify project scope, and set deadlines, so everyone is on the same page from the start.

You can use Gantt charts to outline how and when projects will be delivered. Time tracking, budgeting, and other reports are also easy to access in OpenProject so that anyone on the team can quickly see what needs to be done and when. There’s also a free community edition, as well as a hosted cloud solution and an on-premises solution.

OpenProject’s open source functionality makes it flexible and adaptable to each project’s needs. According to Jose Maria Delos Santos at Project-Management.com, OpenProject has a thriving open source community that many project managers can benefit from. This engaged online community enables users to ask questions and get technical support on demand, which makes customizing the tool easier.

project management software on a computer screen

Odoo 

Odoo is an enterprise software company with an agile open source project management tool that emphasizes clean, simple design and user-friendly navigation. With Odoo’s modern interface, you can organize, schedule, plan, and analyze tasks from a single dashboard.

One benefit of using Odoo is that it enables real-time forecasting based on past successes and failures. This is especially helpful for startups and other small businesses that work with investors and other stakeholders who require short- and long-term forecasting. Graphs, filters, search, and grouping features allow you to conceptualize the project scope from any point during the process.

Odoo’s notes and attachments features make it easy to share documents correlated with a task. Content and product teams will find this especially useful, as it eliminates the need for time-consuming meetings by recording and facilitating conversations in a single location.

In addition to enabling flexibility in design and functionality, Odoo offers many different views. “Start in the tasks and issues screen to see details up close. Move to the scheduling screen to see a broader, daily picture. Update large-scale changes to the project in the calendar screen. All of these options are available for each project and each user can access them individually,” writes the team at TechnologyAdvice.

ProjectLibre

ProjectLibre is an open source desktop tool for project management. Their main goal is to replace Microsoft Project with a more modern, streamlined solution that meets the demands of today’s teams.

ProjectLibre can easily interpret and view Microsoft Project documents, easing the transition from Microsoft Project. ProjectLibre’s software and documentation have been translated into dozens of languages and continue to be translated into others.

The tool features Gantt, RBS, and PERT charts and earned value costing, but perhaps ProjectLibre’s greatest benefit is the thriving online community. Their global user base is divided into different regional groups that discuss best practices, challenges, and successes with the tool.

Helen Bradley at Small Business Computing points out that ProjectLibre isn’t just about seeing the scope of your project from a single vantage point; it’s about finding ways to improve and advance everything. “Not only can you can use ProjectLibre to complete your project, but you can also use it as a tool for analyzing and improving systems.”

ZenTao

ZenTao is a professional scrum tool and open source project management software program. Though designed to support Agile and Waterfall project management, the tool isn’t limited to those styles.

ZenTao takes advantage of their open source community by turning advice into action. They frequently release product upgrades and performance enhancements that make the product an effective, user-driven tool that benefits small and medium-sized teams. Additionally, ZenTao comes with a variety of plug-ins and extensions that allow you to customize the tool so that it works for your needs.

ZenTao’s support team is dedicated to helping people easily transition from their old project management tool. Their on-demand support team provides paid members with a streamlined post-sale onboarding solution. This includes installation, upgrade, data migration, consulting, and advice to ensure a seamless experience.

If you’re looking for an open source project management tool, consider your needs — and the perks of the best tools on the market — to help narrow down your search and get you back to tracking projects with ease.

Images by: Fauxels, Eduardo Rosas, Jopwell

This article is originally published on Jan 14, 2020, and updated on Jan 20, 2020
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