Project management tools are an incredible resource that have risen exponentially in popularity over the last decade. With two platforms standing out from the crowd, ClickUp and Asana.
Both of these platforms provide incredible organizational benefits to their users, and have grown a large userbase behind each of them. Today we’ll be looking deeper into each, and seeing how they stack up compared to each other.
What is ClickUp?
ClickUp is a relatively new project management tool, coming onto the stage in Match of 2017. Developed by Zeb Evans and Alex Yurkowski, the ClickUp platform was created to provide unparalleled project management, productivity, and organizational benefits for its users. Helping teams to come together in a single workspace, and ensure a higher quality of work in the process.
What is Asana?
Asana was originally an internal project management software created by former Facebook executives Justin Rosenstein and Dustin Moskovitz. These two executives worked at the very core of Facebook’s task management centre of operations, and developed Asana back in 2008. Working to improve the company’s ability to collaborate, and improve company wide productivity levels.
Since becoming its own unique platform, Asana has quickly risen in popularity. Now standing as one of the most professionally utilized project management software of its kind.
ClickUp has had the luxury of coming in late to the party, providing the platform with the ability to build itself using the strongest elements of many mainstream project management tools.
Let’s explore some of the core pros that make up the ClickUp platform:
Generous Free Plan for Small Teams
ClickUp is a Freemium project management software, and provides up to four different tiers for its paid options. However, at the base level ClickUp provides a ‘Basic’ plan, which enables teams of up to fifteen to utilize the software.
Coupled with this is the fact that very few features of the ClickUp platform will be limited in this free plan. Allowing small teams to take full advantage of ClickUp without any prior investment.
Compared to many other project management tools, this stands out as an extremely generous offering from the ClickUp team.
Unparalleled Organizational Capabilities
When it comes to a project management tool, organization is at the core of what the platform should provide. ClickUp is no slouch in this department, and works on what they call a Hierarchy system.
Split into Teams -> Spaces -> Projects -> Lists -> Tasks -> Subtasks. This system allows project managers to neatly organize their projects down to the finest detail, and keeps everyone focused and on track.
High Level of Workspace Customization
ClickUp’s platform is extensively customizable. Allowing users to tailor their workspaces to fit their unique industry, or personal, needs. For many teams, or individuals, who utilize project management tools, this level of customization is often a must-have. As the needs of these groups is unique, and very specific, often pertaining to industry standards.
This customization covers everything from how the UI is setup, down to how you setup your own personal information matrix, and even how tasks are reported, completed, and commented on.
Multiple Viewing Options
The ClickUp platform allows you an extensive list of viewing options for your information, which can be vitally important for many industries. These viewing options include:
- Board View
- List View
- Box View
- Gantt Charts
- Calendar View
- Activity View
- Workload View
- Table View
- Map View
- Chat View
- Timeline/Roadmap View
Custom Task Statuses
Whilst it may seem like a minor feature, the ability to add custom task statuses is incredibly useful. Allowing users to make very specific task statuses attached to their work. Ensuring the most about of flexibility possible when it comes time to apply ClickUp to your personal or team’s needs.
You can also add as many custom task statuses as you like. Meaning you can completely cover a task in personalized statuses, if that’s what you need to do. Adding that extra little element of freedom to the platform.
Supported on All Platforms
ClickUp is supported on all platforms. This includes any operating system that can use a web browser, and all mainstream app users. Such as iOS, Android, and Windows. Furthermore, these apps sync between themselves, meaning you can work on the go as long as you have access to your ClickUp workspace.
Asana has been developed out of a heavily corporate environment, and has built a reputation for its effectiveness in these settings. As well as providing significant benefits to even personal users.
Let’s take a closer look at many of the pros that Asana is known for:
Great User Experience
Asana’s user interface has been designed with usability in mind. Providing an incredibly easy to pick up workspace that almost anybody can quickly understand. It’s a breeze to navigate, and begin to explore. Leading users into the more advantaged features of the Asana platform with ease.
The platform is built on a colour-coded system. Allowing them to quickly label their projects, deadlines, and information to help them better navigate the full scope of their project management needs.
Improved Work Efficiency
Due to the Asana platform coming out of a corporate environment, it has been optimized for improved worker efficiency. Allowing you to have multiple views of your workflow, keep a strong hold on your deadlines, and always be engaged in your roadmap.
This keeps you focused on what is up next, and urgent. Allowing you to always stay the most efficient that you possibly can. Teams can also use this information to quickly organize themselves, and revise objectives as projects progress. Providing a boost to their productivity as a whole.
Provides a Free Plan
Asana is a paid service; however, it does provide a free plan for you to begin using. This plan is more tailored towards smaller teams, yet its perfectly usable for larger teams looking to try out Asana’s features before investing capital into companywide use.
With a platform like Asana, collaboration has been baked into the very fabric of the software, which is no surprise. Users can quickly invite others to their workspace, and assign tasks, and include these members in team wide objectives. As well as a range of other options for managers to keep track of project progress, and include important company deadlines.
Furthermore, you can use the platform to communicate in real-time through a message system. As well as file sharing being included in the same messenger integration. The collaboration also enables everyone to stay accountable for their work, as it will be quickly visible who is working on what across the workspace.
The creators of Asana know that not everything can be built into the platform itself. So, they have built Asana to support a wide range of off-site integrations, extending the platforms functionalities significantly. Tools such as Bridge24, for example, can be used to improve the platform’s exporting features.
In any corporate environment, security is important. Many people working in Asana workspaces will be dealing with sensitive information regarding the company. That is why Asana has been built to protect your data with a few simple clicks. Backing up information, and using an encrypted firewall to secure it. Only authorized team members can ever access this data.
No piece of software is without its flaws, and ClickUp is no exception to this rule. Let’s take a closer look at some of the drawbacks of the platform:
Poorly Optimized Web Client & App
For anybody that has taken time to look more closely at the app reviews for ClickUp, or seen non-sponsored information regarding the ClickUp web client, you’ll notice a trend. Many people struggle with the platform’s lack of optimization, which is especially frustrating on the ClickUp app.
Many users report struggling with crashes, freezes, or slow loading times. Especially present when they are dealing with highly complex workspace setups. It appears that ClickUp, whilst expansive, has not invested too much into their platform optimization. Causing some frustration for users down the line.
Difficult to Learn
ClickUp is designed for seasoned project managers in mind, with only an afterthought provided to the more small-time user or team. This makes it difficult to pick up how the platform operates on many levels if you are new to project management platforms.
Many features in the ClickUp platform can be confusing at first, and there are limited resources to get people up to speed quickly. If you are not accustomed to project management tools, you may struggle with ClickUp.
New Updates Are Often Bugged
ClickUp is regularly updated, which is typical for any online service. However, reports from users reflect that it is not rare for updates to be released with bugs. Since these updates are mandatory for all users, this can create incredible frustration for users who are using ClickUp as their primary workspace platform.
Support is Sometimes Lacking
If you are a corporate user, or a small team using ClickUp as your primary project management tool, you may find yourself needing support from the ClickUp team at one point. It’s here you will come face to face with a glaring issue with the ClickUp team, their lack of actual human support.
Many of the support resources for ClickUp are automated, or simply help documents. Meaning if you are facing a unique issue, you will need to dig deep to find an actual human to talk to.
This is especially hard if you are not a paying user.
Asana has been known to be frustrating in a few key areas. Let’s take a moment to explore some of the issues that the Asana platform faces:
No Time Tracking Feature
One interesting shortcoming of the Asana platform is a missing time tracking feature. Time tracking helps managers, and other team members, keep an eye on how much time is invested into each project. Helping to identify bottlenecks in the workflow. You won’t be finding any such feature in Asana.
You Cannot Assign Multiple People to the Same Task
The Asana platform only allows one person to be assigned to a task, which is a glaring oversight by the team. For the majority of teams working in Asana, more than one person working on a task will not be out of the ordinary.
This requires administrators to either create duplicate tasks, and assign them to different people, or have people act as a team user to be assigned to a task. All work arounds that shouldn’t be needed.
Projects Can Get Complex
Asana has no limit to its features, which is a good advantage to the program. However, for many users, this can also weight them down when it comes to working in the Asana workspace.
Many users, when assigned to a task, will be overloaded with Asana’s features. Creating an air of complexity where there doesn’t have to be one. If one member is using features that others are not, this can begin to create confusion between team members.
Not Very Friendly to New Users
Asana is created with seasoned project managers in mind, coming from a highly corporate environment. This means that Asana has all of the extensive features these groups require, a big plus. However, for new users of project management tools, or even just Asana itself, this can quickly become a burden.
New users will be required to learn a significant amount about the platform before being able to make the most of it. Creating a barrier for entry that can slow down work, and delay teams more than is often acceptable.
No Two-Factor Authentication
Despite Asana’s native security measures to keep your data safe, it fails to offer one of the most basic features of online security. Two-Factor Authentication. A must-have for iron-clad security.
Without this feature, Asana workspaces are prone to hacks. Meaning if anybody shares their details, or someone happens to obtain these details, they could potentially access your Asana workspace with ease.
An embarrassing oversight for the Asana team, and a feature that would be simple to add.
Advantages That ClickUp Has Over Asana
Let’s explore some of the advantages that ClickUp has over Asana:
Better Security Measures
ClickUp provides significantly better security measures for teams to take advantage of. Including two-factor authentication, and a range of features that help to keep your data secure.
Easier to Learn than Asana
Whilst both ClickUp and Asana struggle with the new user experience, ClickUp is far easier to pick up than Asana. Providing much better support, compared to Asana, for new users to begin learning the ropes and make the most of the platform.
Much Better Free Plan
ClickUp’s free plan is considerably more generous than Asana’s. Allowing small teams of up to fifteen to use the platform with very little limitation. You will still need to invest to get the most out of the platform, but ClickUp provides more upfront for free.
Advantages That Asana Has Over ClickUp
Let’s take a moment to look more closely at the advantages that Asana has over ClickUp:
More Longstanding Optimization and Functionality
Asana’s platform has been around for over a decade now, and with that comes much more long-standing optimization and functionality. This crosses over to their app selection as well. Meaning you can expect Asana to work more smoothly on more hardware.
Better Integration Support
Asana has significantly more integration support than ClickUp. Providing a wide range of features that help you integrate your personal software selections into the platform with ease.
Higher Quality Platform Support
When it comes to getting live support from the Asana team, you will have a much easier time than with the ClickUp team. Meaning you can actually speak to a human about your problems, and get the solutions you need quickly.
Who Should Use ClickUp?
ClickUp is best suited for small teams, and larger corporate environments that don’t need an excess of features. This includes anything outside of the tech, engineering, or data centric fields.
Who Should Use Asana?
Asana is designed for seasoned project management teams, and for people who have extensive experience with these platforms. As well as supporting much more complex workspace solutions for these teams to take advantage of.
Which is Better for Project Management?
Asana wins in this department, but only by a thin margin. Due to its extensive career in the project management field, and being designed by hardened veterans of the project management space, you’ll find that Asana knows how to get the job done.
Which is Better for Collaboration?
ClickUp wins in this department. Due to a few oversights from the Asana team, ClickUp provides far better support for collaboration on their project management platform. Allowing multiple users to work together seamlessly.
Which is Better for Note Taking?
ClickUp will provide far better support for those looking to keep detailed notes. With a file matrix that is easy to set up, and a surprising amount of freedom around how you take notes, and custom tags.
Pricing: Asana vs Trello
- FREE plan (Basic)
- Premium 10.99$
- Business 24.99$
- Enterprise (custom)
- FREE plan (Basic)
- Trello Gold 5$
Both ClickUp and Asana are fantastic pieces of project management software, with their own benefits that make them popular choices for thousands all around the world. With ClickUp only new on the scene, and Asana standing as a veteran of the field, it will be interesting to see how the platforms grow over the coming years.